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Episode 304: Reasonable Doubt
The episode opens at the Animal Medical Clinic where Reese and Finch have brought Bear to be checked for a suspected illness by a veterinarian, Dr. Rachel Jensen. When the doctor enters the rear of the clinic for medicine for Bear, she is startled to find Reese waiting in the doorway. She tells him he is not allowed in the area but suddenly an armed man confronts them demanding ketamine, followed by his friends. Reese promptly shoots three of the perpetrators but the fourth takes Dr. Jensen at gunpoint. Bear rushes in and attacks the man, but Reese tells him to stop. Dr. Jensen is very grateful and agrees to provide an expensive chew toy for Bear in exchange. Finch is so impressed with Dr. Jensen that he expresses his intent to return Bear to the clinic for future routine treatments.
October 1Back at the Library, Finch reports to Reese that Vanessa's number has been issued. Vanessa had formerly worked as a prosecutor for the District attorney's office. Her husband is a well known defense attorney infamous for getting his clients off on technicalities. Reese watches Vanessa as she leaves her home with her best friend Nicole Spencer. Suddenly, the police, led by Detective Gary Cameron, arrive and arrest Vanessa for the murder of her husband.
In an interview room at the precinct house, Cameron begins to interrogate Vanessa. He plays for her the recording of her call to 911, and shows her a swab of blood recovered from the deck of the boat. He also tells her that the statement she signed at the scene was tested and came back positive for gunshot residue. He shows her a gun and tells her that a witness saw her throw it into the Long Island Sound and the police recovered it. She calmly cuts Cameron off and reminds him that he doesn't have a body and asks for her attorney.
Realizing that Vanessa could be in danger if she remains in custody, Finch contacts Fusco, asking for help. Fusco enters the interview room to find Vanessa's attorney unconscious on the floor without her dress. Vanessa had knocked her out, stolen her clothes and walked out of the precinct pretending to be the attorney.
At the bus station, Cameron informs the assembled officers including Carter, Fusco and Laskey that Domain Awareness has identified Vanessa purchasing a bus ticket to Philadelphia. Fusco forwards to Finch the surveillance footage of her purchasing her ticket. The police fan out to search the station and the immediate surroundings. Just outside, Carter observes Vanessa and he and Finch realize that she bought the ticket as a ruse to throw off the police. Finch has Shaw retrace Vanessa's movements and discovers that she pickpocketed an elderly man. Shaw locates the man and finds out that Vanessa stole his cellphone.
Reese and Shaw track Vanessa to an apartment building in Washington Heights. She asks for a person named Reverb and is told he is unavailable. She shouts the name "Reginald" and a man walks out the door to meet her. He suddenly hugs her and thanks her for speaking to the judge in his case. Carter reports to Finch that Cameron has declared Vanessa to be armed and dangerous, which is highly unusual. Reverb hands Vanessa a kilogram of cocaine while Reese and Shaw look on. Finch gets word that the police are on their way. He tells Reese and Shaw to leave the area and contacts Carter for help.
Several police cars arrive at the scene, and Reverb and his gang run off while Vanessa is forced to run into the apartment building entrance. With guns drawn, Cameron leads the police into the building and orders them to search it floor by floor. Finch has located the phone Vanessa stole and tracks her to the roof, where Carter offers to help her. Vanessa says no one can help her and swears that she did not kill her husband before suddenly leaping from the roof and landing into a dumpster on a passing truck.
Carter meets Reese in an alley next to the apartment building and they discuss Vanessa and Cameron's manhunt for her. As Reese walks off, Carter is surprised to find Laskey standing in the alley. He does not question her about Reese.
Back at the Library, Shaw and Finch discuss why Vanessa ran away. Shaw wants to wager on her guilt or innocence. Suddenly, the signal from Vanessa's stolen cell phone goes offline. Reese figures she may turn to someone she knows, so Finch pulls up Nicole Spencer's Friendczar page and learns that she is having a book club meeting that afternoon at her house. Shaw makes plans to attend posing at the friend of one of Vanessa's friends. Finch is concerned she may not fit in, but Shaw assures him she has a "secret weapon".
Nicole opens her door to find Shaw, claiming to be Carmen, a friend of Nicole's friend Mindy. Nicole is reluctant to let her in until Shaw reveals her "secret weapon" - a bag full of bottles of wine. As the wine flows, the women gossip; not about the book of the month but about the situation with Vanessa and Jeremy. Shaw asks to use the powder room and then surreptitiously accesses Nicole's banking records to confirm that Nicole is not giving money to Vanessa. Shaw then bluejacks Nicole's phone and discovers that not only has there been no contact with Vanessa, but that Nicole has been trading sexual text messages with Jeremy. Shaw confronts Nicole about her affair with Jeremy and informs her that Vanessa may be on her way to kill her. She pulls a gun in front of the shocked group before calmly sitting down and, a glass of wine in hand, asking about the book they were discussing.
Fusco reviews the file on Jeremy's disappearance and discovers that Vanessa's makeup kit was covered in gunshot residue. Reese and Finch conclude that someone planted the evidence and ask Fusco about the witness. His name is Scott Rollins, a security guard at the marina where the Watkins' keep their yacht. Reese leaves to find Rollins.
In the patrol car, Laskey asks Carter about the man in the suit from the night before. She dodges the question and Laskey congratulates her for moving on after Beecher. Carter gives Laskey some advice about his fiancée and he thanks her for it.
Fusco and Finch talk about Jeremy's yacht and his finances. His yacht was mortgaged through a shell company owned by a mobster for $5 million. All of his other accounts are in the red as well. The only account he has with money in it is for a charity he founded called "Innocence Now". Reese watches from a distance as Rollins is arrested by the NYPD. One of the officers is carrying the same bag of cocaine that Vanessa got from Reverb the night before. They conclude that she has framed the only witness against her. Reese spots Vanessa watching the scene and trails her to Rollins' SUV. Vanessa enters the truck and suddenly, Reese appears from the back seat.
At a safe house, Finch and Carter discuss the need to decide whether Vanessa is guilty or innocent before they can go further. Reese drops a hooded Vanessa into a chair and removes the hood. Vanessa protests that they are breaking several laws but Finch tells her that they need to hold a trial, and if she is innocent, they will help her relocate, and if she is guilty they will turn her in. She agrees to the trial.
Cameron shows a group of officers including Terney a photo of Scott Rollins' SUV and lets them know that the city's license plats readers are searching for it. He also tells them that she was seen with a man in a suit.
The trial begins back at the safe house with discussions about the evidence against her including the makeup kit covered with GSR. Vanessa surprises them with the news that she stole a copy of the police report from Cameron's desk during her escape from the precinct. She swears that her husband drowned. She shows them $50,000 that she found in Scott Rollins' locker and asserts that it was a bribe paid to frame her for murder. Carter questions her about her relationship with Jeremy and how they met. Carter mentions his life insurance but Vanessa corrects her that they have a living trust and if he dies under suspicious circumstances, the money would go instead to their charity. She then tells the story about how she had confronted him the night he disappeared about a threatening note she found on her car which implied he owed a good deal of money to a gangster.
Shaw and Fusco are meeting with a banker at the charity's bank in Greenwich, CT. The banker informs them that the account had over $20 million in it yesterday, but that the money was transferred out of the account earlier that morning.
At the safe house, Carter reveals that Jeremy was having an affair. Vanessa responds that she was also having an affair. Finch questions her statement as they have no evidence of the affair.
She provides a second email address which Finch uses to view the emails to her lover and confirm her story. She claims they promised to give up outside affairs and rededicate themselves to each other. After professing her love for Jeremy, Carter tells Vanessa that Jeremy was having an affair with Nicole. Vanessa refuses to believe that either of them would do that to her.
The police have located Rollins' SUV and begin to search the immediate area. Carter, Finch and Reese discuss the results of their mock trial and conclude that Vanessa is innocent.
Fusco and Shaw have discovered that it was the co-signer on the charity's accounts who transferred the money. His name is Henry Shain. When he sends the photo to Finch, he is shocked to discover that the man is really Jeremy, who is not dead after all and must have faked his death.
The team shows Vanessa Jeremy's fake ID and she realizes that he is the one who framed her for murder. Reese concludes that Jeremy might try to kill her and offers to get her out of town. Carter's police radio crackles and she announces they have entered the building. Suddenly, the police break open a door and rush in, but it's not the safe house, but an underground gambling den across town that Finch heard about from Zoe Morgan.
Reese takes Vanessa to the bus station. She thanks him for his help but expresses concern that Jeremy will come after her. Reese, believing she might be in danger, gives her his backup weapon which she slips into her purse. He watches as she walks off to board her bus.
As Carter is speaking to Finch, she looks down and discovers a picture of Jeremy on the chair Vanessa was sitting in.
The picture has been defaced and torn. This leads Carter to change her verdict and conclude that Vanessa was lying. Finch then cross-references Jeremy's fake passport and learns that Vanessa not only ordered it but got a fake one for herself as well. Finch contacts Reese, who runs to the bus only to find that Vanessa is not on it. The team realizes that Vanessa is the perpetrator and will kill Jeremy.
In Central Park, Laskey reports to Terney that Carter is beginning to trust him and that he has seen her new "boyfriend".
Aboard the yacht, Jeremy enters calling for Nicole, just before an armed Vanessa confronts him. They discuss his betrayal and he promises he can make it right. Reese appears and Jeremy begs him to intervene, but he declines. Instead, he takes out a sidearm, wipes it clean and leaves it on a table next to Jeremy. He then leaves them alone and unties the boat from the dock. Finch calls to find out what's happened and Reese tells him to call the Coast Guard as two shots ring out from the boat, now floating freely in the harbor.