Recap/Review – Major Crimes – “Backfire” – 8/12/13

majorcrimesrecap815smallThe Major Crimes squad struggles to reach an acceptable deal with the murderer of a 19-year-old prostitute, likely belonging to a larger criminal organization.


Jason Goss murdered a 19-year-old prostitute. His lawyer, Mr. Page, wants to negotiate a deal in which Goss will give up the names of a criminal organization in return for a manslaughter charge.

They’re not too keen on letting him get away with murder; Goss’s lawyer points out that their case is very circumstantial, and he can spin it in his client’s favor if they were to go to trial.

Jump with me to read more.

Raydor wants corroborating evidence before proceeding with the plea. Goss says that he was in a silver S-class Mercedes when he murdered Briana and that he’ll give them the location of the car once he’s convicted.

Once in the courtroom, Goss simply states that he threw 19-year-old Briana Mathis from the car on Mulholland Drive. The judge asks for the motive, and Goss remains silent. Goss admits to being paid to commit the murder, and the judge would like to know by whom. When the lawyer stalls, the judge calls both sides forth.

The judge refuses to accept this plea for the horrific crime and won’t rule on it until they have sufficient evidence and answers to his questions.

They can’t use the car because it was given to them during the deal that is no longer on the table. (Glad to see Sharon enforcing the rules again.)

Tao has deconstructed the 9-1-1 call with lots of technical jargon. The call came from an office.

Taylor wants them to get Goss to cooperate and tries to get under Raydor’s skin by comparing her to Chief Johnson. Wow. After all these years, she gets a compliment, and she’s gone. Flynn takes Sharon’s side and explains that while Brenda could probably get them to confess, it would come back to bite them sooner or later. Ouch.

Raydor requests a full-body scan of Briana’s body. They find a small GPS tag embedded in her skin. That’s how the mysterious 9-1-1 caller knew the location of her body.

Page is waiting for an offer from the FBI. Special Agent Shaw says Goss is valuable in their ongoing investigation and is reluctant to explain further.

But Raydor won’t let Goss leave without some insight into their case. The FBI is investigating Jerry Stone, the owner of the strip club where Briana used to work. He used Briana to extort politicians into allowing casinos and strip clubs into their districts.

Shaw then shows the detectives a classified video in which Briana explains her part in the investigation. She doesn’t want to keep going back to work for Jerry, as the other girls she’s worked with have turned up dead, but Shaw promises that in just three days more, she’ll be home free. The video also confirms that they installed the chip into Briana. It was meant to keep her safe, but she was drugged before being placed in the car, and they thought she was asleep.

On the video, Briana mentioned the Mercedes, as well as the name of her driver, Cory Stark. Since the video is classified, they can’t legally pursue this lead. Instead, Raydor has Tao and Provenza sit on Cory’s house while she finds another way in.

Unfortunately, Rusty is in the squad room, listening to the failed efforts of the FBI to protect its witness. I bet that’s comforting.

Shaw wants to grant Goss immunity, but the judge wouldn’t even accept manslaughter as a plea. I doubt he’ll accept immunity. Raydor suggests having him settle for murder two. Shaw tells them—on the record—that Cory was the driver of the Mercedes S and Raydor hands that information over to Provenza. There’s no answer at the Stark residence, but a puddle of blood gives them probable cause to enter. Someone got there before them; Stark is dead.

The Mercedes isn’t in the garage, but the keys and Stark’s cell phone were found by his body.

Raydor uses these items to convince Goss that they’ve found Cory and he’s cooperating. It’s up to Goss now to prove that he should get the deal. A deal, in light of the new evidence and the inclusion of the FBI, that has now been upped to murder two.

Goss gives up the location of the car and admits that Jerry ordered the hit once Briana told Cory about her involvement in the investigation.

Goss then repeats this story in court, and now the detectives have the evidence to back it up. Once the judge inquires about Cory Stark, we get to watch Goss’s reaction to the news that he’s been played. Lovely.

Emma Rios has some choice words for the judge. She believes his failure to accept the plea earlier led to the death of Cory Stark. He couldn’t care less.

Rusty shows Kris the 11 threatening letters he’s received and, in light of Briana’s case, wants to remain friends in order to protect her. Kris leaves the station in tears.

The beginning of this episode was different—starting in the middle of the investigation, where we have to put the pieces together without viewing the crime scene. It was a nice change.

I believe this is the moment we’re supposed to realize that Rios truly cares for the law and isn’t Creepy Emma. I don’t know about anyone else, but that didn’t happen for me.

Loved the way Rusty handled that. The “we can only be friends because it will save your life.” This might backfire; wouldn’t she fall for him because of this gesture? And when will he tell Sharon about those letters?

– Lindsay

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