Season 1 Episode 3

Reconstructing Alice

Aired Friday 9:00 PM Mar 30, 2007 on NBC

Episode Recap

Raines is in bed, unable to sleep. "Sleep! You know, what could be more natural. You close your eyes and next thing you know it's morning. Right? Unless you start thinking about things. Like how your marriage might have been saved if you had worked a little harder or how your partner might still be alive if you'd fired a little sooner. So maybe you watch the tv to drown out the noise in your head. You know, trouble is, sometimes that's worse. After a while you get kind of used to living in a state of weariness. It may be physical but it starts to feel existential. And then it's the morning and ready or not you... ya gotta start all over again."

Raines is called to a murder scene. A woman's body is found. He continues his monologue. "It's a simple thing sleep. Without it you start to lose your ability to concentrate or perform simple tasks. And, uh, after a while you can even start to hallucinate. They say that if you go without sleep long enough you'll die. I see death everyday and sometimes it looks restful. Like a big sleep."

The body is a Jane Doe with a single gunshot to the chest. She has no identification. A man named James Milton seems agitated by the bodies' presence interrupting his work day. Raines puts him in his place by insisting they take castings of the man's expensive shoes. As Raines goes to throw away his coffee cup he is called...... by the victim. He heads to his car, attempting to get away from the woman. He tells her he has to go find her killer.

Raines has the other cops trying to help find out who the bag lady is. She has nothing on her that would tell who she is. He tells them he is going to cover shelters and outreach centers. He goes to the break room and the bag lady is fascinated by all the food around the room. She wants to know if it is there for anyone to take. Raines tells her, "Unless there's a name on it." The bag lady rummages in the fridge and pulls out a wrapped food package. Reading the name on it she says, "Boyer?" Raines nods and tells her, "It's yours."

Raines goes to the Venice Outreach Center run by a woman named Helen Mewlan. Inviting him in her dog starts to growl until Helen pets him and tells him that Raines is a friend. Raines shows her a picture of the bag lady and Helen recognizes the woman but tells Raines she doesn't know the woman's name. She points Raines in the direction of a man named Micky Russo who partnered with the victim. As he leaves the Center a man tells Raines to check out a motel that he saw her at. Raines discovers the victim was named Alice Brody. Alice worked there a couple years before cleaning rooms. He hears his name and turns to find Alice dressed in a french maid outfit. Thankfully for him the hallucination is interrupted by the return of the woman who runs the motel. She gives Raines a copy of Alice's job application.

Alice is a friend of Sal Martinez who runs a body shop. Raines gets the information out of Sal that Alice was friendly when she had a few drinks in her. He admits that Alice had come to him a week prior, wanting his help to get off the streets. Sal took her to apply for SSI but she was ineligible since she had money in a bank account.

Raines goes to see the bank manager, Scott Bills. He tells Raines that Alice showed up drunk, wanting her money. She claimed to be "Alice Brody" who has an account there. The social security number matched but the victim, Alice, didn't know the password or the PIN number for the account. Scott reveals he tried to contact his client Alice Brody but she has not returned any of his calls. Raines has him call again and the phone is disconnected. Scott gives Raines the address to Alice's apartment. Conversing with Alice Raines surmises there might be a chance that bag lady Alice didn't steal bank account Alice's identity, but perhaps bag lady Alice has gotten her own identity stolen.

Raines brings a detail crew to Alice's apartment. It is empty. Raines is drawn to the bathroom by a sound. He finds a woman in the bathtub and does a doubletake until he realizes it is his hallucination. He clears the other officers from the apartment. Raines tells Alice that someone was renting the apartment in her name. He finds mail, mostly junk mail. He also finds mail addressed to Alice, referring to her as a shareholder and valued portfolio customer. He calls Carolyn to get a warrant for a stock market portfolio account. He notices he is late for an appointment.

He has to meet with his therapist, Dr. Samantha Kohl again. He tells her that his newest victim Alice is annoying. He is reminded, "She's dead." Raines backpedals and says, "The way I imagine her, she's annoying." He is told to picture Alice sitting on a stool in the room. He feigns inability to imagine Alice there. He begins berating imaginary Alice in the chair, firing off a series of questions at her. Alice replies by sticking her tongue out at Raines.

Boyer has been unable to find Micky Russo. He checked out all the places where homeless people would hang out. Finally he looked in the phone book and found a listing for him. Micky tells Raines he loved Alice, he tried to get her off the street. He admits he used to beat on her but he didn't kill her. He is two years sober and has been off the street. Alice told Micky she couldn't sleep unless she could hear the ocean. Micky tells Raines that Alice's family is dead. She had a husband and son back in Denver Colorado who died in a car crash.

Officer Lance arrives dressed to the nines, with the complete records for the stock account information. The stocks purchased were all purchased in 6-8 hundred shares and sold the next day, making money every time. The man, Douglas, who gave her the paperwork told her that every day, about an hour after the stock market closes he gets calls from clients asking about certain stocks. They buy those stocks and sell the next day. Oddly the sales coincide with stocks mentioned on a tv show called, "Crazy Money." The motto of the show is "Feed Your Greed".

Raines goes to the show's set to interview the host, Milton Treger. Milt tells Raines no one there does insider trading. He insists everyone on staff show him their financials. He assures Raines no one on his show is involved. Raines tells him that is too bad because it leaves him as the only suspect. Milt wants to know why he is there. Raines tells him about the murder, and tells him the paper trail has led to his show. Milt tells Raines he makes his predictions from the makeup chair, hands them to his assistant Tammy who gives them to three people. He takes Raines through the studio pointing out the people, proving those three have no time to call brokers. He tells Raines no one else sees the list. Tammy interrupts and mentions that the director has her give a kid named Jason Kitman the list as well.

Raines visits Jason. He seizes his computer. Jason has a dog who barks at Raines, even after Jason tells him to shut up. Back at the office Raines is pouring yet another cup of coffee. Alice says, "That's about your 10th cup." Raines asks, "What are you the caffeine police?"

Raines tells Alice he thinks Kitman killed her. She says, "I still think Treger did it. Kitman's just a patsy." Raines replies, "Lee Oswald was a patsy. Kitman's a suspect. Treger? I don't like him anymore than you do. But he didn't kill you." Carolyn has been in touch with Denver Sheriff's and the Deputy told her there are no next of kin but he is flying in to identify the body. He told Carolyn he knows the family.

Talking to Jason, Raines suggests that Jason used Alice's identity to purchase and sell the stocks. When the bank manager called the number Jason set up as Alice's number, Jason got nervous and killed her. Jason tells Raines he didn't kill anyone. He says he never even heard of her. Raines says, "The genius of using a homeless person's identity is that they're not gonna miss it. They don't use it anyway." Jason also owns the same kind of gun used to shoot Alice. Jason says it was stolen. He departs and Raines tells him not to leave town. Boyer put a tracking device on Jason's car.

Raines shows Jason's picture to Helen and she declines knowledge of him. Raines has nodded off on the couch and is awakened by a kettle whistling. Alice is in the kitchen making tea. She tells Raines she couldn't sleep. He tells he can't now either. He goes to sit and have tea with her. The scenery shifts around and Raines is suddenly sitting with Alice at a "Mad Tea Party."

Deputy Mark Jessup arrives from Denver to identify Alice's body. He makes a positive identification and asks how it happened. Raines tells her gunshot wound, and mentions that she had been living on the street for a couple years. Raines tells Jessup Alice took things hard after she lost her family. Jessup tells Raines there was no accident, Alice deserted her family, walked out. Alice was his mother. Jessup says Alice quit cleaning, fixing meals, locked herself in her room, then one day was gone. Raines asks how Jessup wants to handle the funeral arrangements. Jessup says, "Treat her like you would any other indigent." He says he spent his whole life saying goodbye to her and he is not taking her home. Jessup leaves.

Alice is upset, wanting Raines to go back and talk to Jessup. She wants to know what kind of a monster would walk out on her family. Raines just says, "You tell me." Boyer interrupts, calling to say Jason is running. They catch the car and find a carjacker in it. They are told the keys were in the door. Raines wants to know where Kitman is. He goes to Kitman's apartment. The dog is barking nonstop. Raines asks for animal control and a neighbor interupts. She has a key, takes care of the dog when Jason is out. Jason's body is found in his bedroom, also dead from a gunshot.

Raines tells the neighbor Jason is dead. She mentions hearing a door slam about 2 am. She didn't hear anyone or anything else. The dog barks at Raines. Curious, Raines asks the neighbor if she heard the dog bark the night before. She tells him no. Raines asks if she ever read Sherlock Holmes? He quotes, "The dog didn't bark. That was the curious incident."

Helen is in her office when Jason's dog comes in and she greets him familiarly. Raines follows the dog in. Down at the station Raines sets out photos of some of the homeless people. Raines surmises that Jason set up accounts in the homeless people's identities. He figures Jason got their identity from Helen. Helen tells him, "People are starving to death on the streets of the richest country on Earth. I had to do something. I couldn't let them drive us out. I was just taking back a little of what they'd stolen." She denies shooting Jason. Raines points out that gunshot residue will still be in her hands. He mentions Alice. Helen said she told Jason that Alice was completely harmless. Helen didn't want to believe that Jason killed Alice.

She went to Jason the night before. He was packing to leave town. He told Helen he was only putting Alice out of her misery. He told Helen she wasn't any better than he was. That upset her. She got his gun out of the suitcase and shot him. Helen tells Raines, "He shot a sleeping homeless woman. He couldn't see her. She wasn't a person to him."

Raines is on the pier holding a box. He looks over at Alice and tells her he thought she might like it there. He tells her he doesn't know what caused her to do the things she did but he knows that sometimes what looks like a choice is not really a choice at all. She says, "It's too bad you're the only one who knows that." He says, "Maybe I'm not the only one." Micky arrives thanking Raines for calling him. He compliments the setting. Raines reminds Micky that he said Alice couldn't sleep unless she could hear the ocean. Micky takes the box of ashes and says, "Alice you had more good in you then anybody I ever knew or hoped to. That's what got me off the street, helped me stay strong, stay sober. I just thank God you're at peace now." Mickey opens the box and releases the ashes as Raines' figment of Alice disappears.

Dr. Kohl asks if Raines ever figured out why Alice bothered him so much. Raines replies that he thought she might be the Ghost of Christmas yet to come. Dr. Kohl finds it interesting that he thinks he might become homeless. She tells him the main causes of homelessness are economic distress, alcoholism and psychiatric disorder. Dr. Kohl tells Raines that in his case she doesn't think money is an issue and she doesn't think he is is an alcoholic. Raines says, "Not yet." Dr. Kohl asks if he thinks he might be going crazy and he just tells her he has to get back to her on that.