When there's something strange in the neighborhood, who you gonna call? Rick Castle!
Actually, you'd probably call TV ghost wrangler Jack Sinclair, who is investigating some paranormal activity at the old McClaren Mansion. Strange things are happening as he videotapes from the inside. Jack says, "Mercy, I can see it. Mercy!" Then there are screams. Then silence. Dead silence.
Jack Sinclair's body is found inside the living room. His throat was slit, but the blood splatter on the floor was unobstructed by the killer's body. Jack's producer says all camera signals went south just before the murder. The owner of the McClaren Mansion, Steve Fuller, says his place has been hard to rent for 20 years thanks to its haunted history. As you may have guessed, Castle is scaring up lots of paranormal possibilities for the murder.
Jack's cameraman, Barry Bavetta, could have tampered with the video signals. But the guy alibis out. Castle's ghostly theories become a little more credible when some video footage shows a tripod moving across the floor on its own. There have been several murders inside the mansion over the years with the killers almost always claiming a demon was responsible. Spooky.
Fingerprints from a recently-paroled man who was embarrassed on Jack Sinclair's TV show are found in the McClaren Mansion. Ron Berger wrote a threatening letter after Jack's Ghost Wranglers show turned him into a jailhouse laughingstock. Berger says Jack apologized and actually asked him to take photos of the house. All the pictures are of the living room which is also the crime scene.
Castle and Ryan question a ghost hunter named Mercy LaGrande. That happens to be the name Jack screamed out just before he died. Mercy says Jack sought her help because he was repressing memories of a murder that took place at the McClaren Mansion. It was a horrific event he witnessed as a boy. When Jack returned to the scene of the crime, the killer's face finally became clear.
20 years ago, 11-year-old Jack Sinclair witnessed the murder of Melanie Benton. The investigating officer, Detective Addison Smith, suspected the victim's abusive husband, Matt, was the killer. The guy sent postcards to his brother, Pete, from Vienna 15 years ago placing blame for the murder on a demon.
Castle wants to check out the McClaren place with Beckett at night-unless she's afraid of demons. Beckett replies, "I ain't afraid of no ghosts." Castle loves it. Better break out the proton packs, especially when the lights go out and a draft blows out a candle. A secret passageway is found in the ceiling. There's magnetic field generator in a hidden room as well as the skeleton of Matt Benton that has been there for 20 years.
Pete Benton had always assumed Matt killed his wife. He also suspected Melanie was having an affair. The team believes the mansion's owner, Steve Fuller, may be the mystery man/killer after they find his prints on a new light bulb in the hidden room. They lead Fuller to believe they will be tearing down a wall leading to the hidden room. If he's the killer, he'll want to remove the body before they arrive. A trap is set.
Castle and Beckett catch their man in the act, but it's not Fuller. It's Detective Addison Smith. He was in love with Melanie Benton and killed her when she tried to break off their relationship. Smith asked Fuller to give him a call whenever there was activity at the McClaren Mansion. That's how he knew Jack Sinclair would be there. He used the demon legend to scare people away. He confesses this while on hidden camera. Case closed.
Though there were no demons present at the mansion, Castle gets Beckett to admit they may have had some supernatural help solving the case. In other news, a double date with Ryan and Jenny leads Esposito and Lanie to believe they should take a little break. Alexis is also having relationship woes doing the long distance thing with Ashley. She feels a bit better as she snuggles up to her dad to watch a good old-fashioned flesh-eating zombie movie. It's scary how good these two are for each other.