Episode PremiereAugust 05, 2012
Show Period2010 - 2013
Production CompanyFox TV Studios
Cast and Crew
- Matt Passmore as Jim Longworth
- Kiele Sanchez as Callie Cargill
- Carlos Gomez
- Michelle Hurd
- Jordan Wall
- Uriah Shelton
- Taylor Cole as Jennifer Starke
- Taylor Cole as Jennifer Starke
- Kaya Mae Maloney
- Rob Mayes
- Wil Traval
- Erin Chambers
Two marine biologists climb out of the water and onto a lush, practically untouched tropical island. They make their way onto the beach, and head towards their towels and backpacks. The female biologist grabs her water purifier and heads off into the forest in search of a stream. As she checks the ground for mud, she notices unusual red drops on the ground. Curious, she follows the trail of red to a nearby shrub where she sees a man, face down and dead, the back of his head bashed in.
At Atlanta General Hospital, Callie Cargill sits at the nurse's station, chatting and swapping medical jargon over the phone with Medical Examiner Carlos Sanchez. She's worried about freezing up during exams and Carlos can totally relate because he's been there before. He suggests she do some deep breathing before them. Meanwhile, Detective Jim Longworth waits impatiently for Carlos to get off the phone with his girlfriend so that he can talk to her. Finally, he grabs the phone out of Carlos' hand, but Callie apologizes and tells him that her break is over and she has to go. She says they'll talk later and hangs up.
Jim walks towards FDLE Bureau Chief Jennifer Starke and Carlos, who is standing over the victim. Carlos reports the victim is a white male in his early 30s. He has no ID on him. Based on his liver temperature, time of death was between 11 a.m. and noon that day. Puncture wounds on his head indicate that the murder weapon has a curved edge. The killer stunned him and then finished him off from behind. No defense wounds or signs of struggle. Daniel Green joins the group, telling them to keep an eye out for wildlife. He explains that the island is only accessible by water and one causeway bridge. It's pretty much untouched by humans and is home to a lot of different types of animals, including manatees, sea turtles, bobcats, pythons, and panthers. Upon hearing "panthers", Carlos gets up and tells the team he's ready to bring the body back to the substation. Daniel, who hadn't gotten a good look at the victim until now, identifies him as Brian Taylor who won $130 million in last year's Florida State Lottery. He has an obsession with lottery winners because he finds it fascinating how much lives can change when you're suddenly able to do or buy anything. Some winners go on to have amazing lives, while others don't. Jim says that it looks like Brian's luck ran out.
Techs work the crime scene as Jennifer asks how a millionaire can end up murdered on a deserted island. Jim says it's probably because the island isn't so deserted after all. They spot a walking trail and head down the path. Jennifer says that the island that they're on, Rubicon Key, is part of a chain of islands called Islandia. Only three of the keys are privately owned, with Rubicon being one of them. They continue walking until the path opens up to reveal an Old French Colonial house covered in Spanish moss and surrounded by large trees. Jim wonders aloud who would want to live in a place like this with all the predators and bugs around. "It suits me just fine," says a voice behind them. They turn around to see a scruffy looking guy, who tells them if they don't like it they could leave or he could get his hunting rifle. Jim flashes his badge and guy identifies himself as Neil Gannon, the owner of the island. He takes in their sweaty, overheated condition, and tells them that they need water. They follow him inside.
The detectives take in Neil's place, which is filled with antique furniture and old Florida memorabilia. Jim notices a pair of muddy boots by the front door and Jennifer asks how anybody could wear them in the humidity. Neil looks down at their shoes and says only idiots would trudge through the island's rough terrain in heels or sneakers. He hands them two slightly murky glasses of cloudy water (he says it's fine, he just needs to "change the filter), which they look at and sniff with mild displeasure. Jim pours his out, but Jennifer, not wanting to offend, takes a sip, but then makes a face and spits it out. Jim shows Neil a picture of Brian, asking if he recognizes him. He shakes his head and Jennifer tells him that Brian was murdered on his island and that there was no one else around except for Neil and two marine biologists. Neil says that people come to his island all of the time without permission: botanists, bird watchers, cops. Jim spots a wrestling trophy on the shelf: Micanopy High School Champion, Bill Wichowski and asks who "Bill Wichowski" is. Neil explains that he collects old junk to give the place a homey feel. He says he didn't hear anyone on his property that morning; he never left the house and didn't see Brian. He maintains he's not a shut-in, he just hates people. Jim tells him not to take any sudden trips without notifying them first, but Neil assures them that the mainland lost its allure to him a long time ago and that he isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
Jim enters the autopsy room as he talks to Callie on the phone. He says he's trying to plan a trip to Atlanta to see her the following weekend. Rushing to her rounds, Callie tells Jim that she would love that, but with her boards coming up, she's going to be really busy. She'll call him tomorrow during her study break. Jim's frustrated that he won't be able to see her again, but he says OK and hangs up. He focuses his attention on Carlos's computer screen, where there's a photo of a yacht. Carlos removes a lottery ticket from his lab coat, saying all it takes is "a dollar and a dream." He reports that Brian was killed by blunt force trauma to the head, but he also discovered Brian's liver and kidney were mush. The deterioration happened recently and very fast. The toxicology report came back clean, except for the presence of Paxil, a common anti-depressant, something that wouldn't have such an effect on the organs. Brian also had signs of dehydration. Jim notes that there wasn't much fresh water on the island. Is it possible the dehydration could damage the liver the way it did? Carlos hypothesizes that his levels weren't high enough to do that much damage, so Brian probably ingested a poison. Brian may have died from a blow to the head, but he was just hours away from his body shutting down. Jim says Daniel is working with the Coast Guard to see if Brian was shipwrecked. Maybe he didn't have any provisions and was eating plants on the island. He is also researching what kinds of plants grow on the island.
Jim heads towards his office where he is met by FDLE Regional Director Colleen Manus and Jennifer. Manus tells them that Brian was almost destitute before winning the lotto, but the money turned him into a mini real estate mogul; he owned several estates around the country. He made one call before his death, to his next of kin, his brother Lucas. The police have already informed him of his brother's death. Jim and Jennifer head out to talk to him.
The detectives walk up the driveway of an enormous cookie-cutter McMansion with expensive cars outside. Jennifer asks Jim what he would do if he won the lottery. Without hesitating, he says he'd buy a castle in Scotland and a house in Pebble Beach, great places to play golf. He's clearly thought about this before. She grins, telling him that she doesn't see him walking away from the job; she wouldn't either. Jim smiles, telling Jennifer that her boyfriend Mike would think it was nuts. She agrees, but mumbles that she's not sure how much longer that's going to be an issue. This catches Jim's attention, but before he can ask her about it, the sound of a small engine revving up comes from the backyard. They turn the corner to see Lucas flying a remote controlled quadrocopter. Jim flashes his badge and waves him over. He lands the toy and jogs over to the officers. Jennifer tells Lucas she's sorry for his loss. He says he's been doing anything to keep his mind off of it. Jim looks around, telling him that it must be easy to do that with millions of dollars. Lucas tells him he'd trade everything to have his brother back. When Jennifer asks about the phone call from Brian, Lucas says that Brian never left him a message. Lucas has been at the house all weekend. The neighbors could verify that since they've been complaining about the noise. He hadn't heard from Brian in a few days, but it wasn't unusual for him to take off and check out without telling anyone. He liked to get away from everything, especially the money. The detectives head off and Daniel calls Jim to report that the Coast Guard recovered Brian's boat, "Lulu's Dream" about a mile down shore from where his body was found. There was no evidence of foul play and it looks like he was traveling alone. Daniel couldn't find anyone named Lulu associated with Brian. He says he also looked into whether there were any other residents living on Rubicon Island, aside from Neil. It doesn't look like there were. But satellite images show what looks like a campsite near the shore.
Back on Rubicon Island, Jim and Jennifer arrive at the campsite. The tent's flattened out and Jim examines an empty backpack, monogrammed with the letters "BG" that he found on the ground. Jennifer finds a burned out stack of papers, held together by a big, thick binder clip and throws it into an evidence bag. It looks like legal documents. But why would Brian bring them to a camp site? Jennifer spots an empty bottle of fancy looking water near the campsite. She recognizes it as Vatn, a $7 volcanic spring water from Iceland. Jim's curious about it, since the autopsy showed Brian was dehydrated. He checks out the bottle and notices a dozen or so dead ants around it. He bags the bottle for testing. While crouching down to get a better look, Jennifer's eyes spot something; it's blood and a few distinct boot impressions in the dirt. They know someone who wears boots on the island: Neil.
At the station, Neil sits in the hot seat. Jim places some teen romance paperback books on the table with titles like "Girl Unloved" and "Forever Young." Jim questions how Neil got into writing young adult romance novels. Neil says he doesn't like to talk about his writing. Jim doesn't blame him. Neil says the books weren't the ideal paths to his success, but they have allowed him to buy his island and focus on his "serious" writing. Jim suggests that Brian got in the way of Neil's solitude and that's why he killed him. Neil shakes his head, and says he would have just asked Brian to leave, not kill him. Jim asks about the boot prints all over the campsite. Neil finally admits to being at the campsite, where he told Brian that he was on private property and to leave the island immediately, but Brian just kept saying that the island belonged to him and that he bought it. Neil says maybe it had something to do with the annoying realtor who has hounded him all year. She kept showing up with gift baskets, trying to get him to sell. But Neil wasn't interested. He threw the "junk" from her baskets into his compost and recycling bins. The realtor's name is Meghan Connor.
Jim and Jennifer enter an office and notice the reception area is filled with fancy gift baskets of gourmet items. Meghan Connor, a petite woman with striking red hair, turns around and asks the detectives if she can help them. After identifying himself, Jim tells her that Brian was found dead. Meghan's reaction seems genuine, but Jim wastes no time questioning her and asks about the 30 percent commissions she takes from Brian's sales. Meghan says she works hard for her clients and spent a lot of time focused on Brian, who was determined to buy Rubicon Island; he was obsessed with it. She showed him many other properties, but that's the one he wanted. But Neil wasn't interested in selling.. Meghan tells them that yesterday morning she wasn't anywhere near Rubicon; she was sprucing up a property for an open house. Jim says perhaps Meghan was being a bit greedy with her large commission, but she maintains she's a good business woman and always negotiates the best deal for herself.
Callie sits at her kitchen table, her nose deep in textbooks, when she hears a knock on the door. It's Miranda and Callie immediately freaks out, assuming she missed a shift. Miranda quickly tells her she's fine. She apologizes to Callie, telling her that they got off on the wrong foot and she wants to make it up to her. She asks her to come with her to a medical event that night. It's a 30-minute presentation followed by free booze and food. It's also a great place to network. Callie says she's been buried in her books all week because of exams. Miranda assures her that she's going to burn out unless she has a break. Callie considers this, then agrees to go.
At the station, Daniel tells Jim that he can't find the olive oil hand cream Jim was looking for, so he substituted it with a rose salve. After a questioning eye from Carlos, Jim tells him he's sending Callie a big gift basket of her favorite things to let her know he's thinking about her. Manus and Jennifer approach the group as Jim asks Carlos if he's found anything off the bottle of Vatn water they got from Brian's campsite. Carlos says there are a thousand different poisons and he has to identify the poison in Brian's system first. Jennifer says she went through Brian and Lucas' financials and found that Brian invested a million dollars into Lucas' sunglasses business, which failed after three months. Manus says that Brian signed over power of attorney to Lucas, giving him control of all the money, but after the sunglasses business disaster, Brian revoked it. According to Brian's attorney, Brian had lost all faith in Lucas' business decisions and was having a new will drawn up to take Lucas out of it.
Back at the Brian's mansion, Jim and Jennifer approach Lucas, who's lounging in a floating pool chair, wearing bright orange sunglasses. Jim asks if they are his design and Lucas smiles, telling him he has a whole storage unit full of them in case the FDLE wants any. Jim and Jennifer say that they know Brian was cutting him out of the will. Lucas says that he never cared about the money and he has a business degree, so he could have fended for himself. He didn't kill his brother. Brian didn't trust some stranger controlling his money and at least he helped keep the long line of moochers at bay. Jim asks him who was on the list of moochers.
Inside the house, Lucas gives the detectives a giant wicker basket filled with letters. He tells them that they were all from people asking Brian for money. There were even 50 marriage proposals. Jennifer says it's no wonder Brian wanted to live alone on an island. She asks Lucas if he knew that Meghan was trying to sell him one. It doesn't surprise him. Lucas said she would have sold Brian Disneyland if she could. Lucas says Brian made the financial decisions and that he just made sure the money was in escrow. If he was trying to buy an island, Lucas didn't know anything about it. Jim spots a picture on the mantel of a teenage Brian and a beautiful redheaded girl, happy and smiling. Lucas tells him that her name was Lourdes, and she was Brian's high school crush; she died in an accident when they were teens. Brian never really got over her. He had trouble letting things go. Lucas grabs a bottle of Vatn water from the fridge. Jim and Jennifer trade a look, and ask him where he got the water. He says that Meghan puts them in the gift baskets she hands out.
At the lab, Carlos tells Jim and Jennifer that the poison found in Brian's system is Amanita Virosa, or Destroying Angel. It's a tasteless mushroom that releases Amatoxin, which is what damaged Brian's liver and kidney. But there weren't any traces in Brian's stomach, so he needs to run further tests to see how it got into his system. Jim suggests it was a bottle of overpriced water. Manus is getting a warrant for all of the suspects' computers so they can see if anybody has researched poisonous mushrooms online recently. Daniel walks in and says he was finally able to print images from the photographic plates he got off the charred documents found at the murder site. He pops a drive into his computer to show escrow papers for Rubicon Island. Meghan was the realtor listed and Brian was the buyer. There's a 90 day escrow for a $20 million sale, which Meghan would have made a 30 percent commission on. Daniel checked with the city and found out that the paperwork was never filed, or even notarized; they are completely fake. Daniel goes to Meghan's website and Jennifer notices that she was the listing agent for every one of Brian's property sales going back the entire last year, after he won the lotto. Daniel scrolls from one listing to another, and Jennifer and Jim notice Meghan has slightly different hair styles and colors in each one, leading up to the red hair she's currently sporting. Jim holds the photo of Lourdes next to the computer screen. She's a dead ringer. Getting off the phone, Carlos tells the team that the final lab results just came in and trace evidence of a distilled solution of Amatoxin was definitely in the bottle of water from the crime scene.
Jim and Jennifer surprise Meghan as they enter her office. Jim asks her for a bottle of her expensive water. She says she's all out and asks what this is all about. Jim says that Brian was poisoned with water from one of her bottles. She doesn't know what he's taking about. Jim says that Brian went to Rubicon Island with her fake escrow papers. Megan looks upset. Jim says that Neil told Brian he never sold him or anyone else the island. Jennifer adds that they know Meghan cashed a $7 million commission check. Jim theorizes that Brian threatened to report Meghan for fraud. At that point, she couldn't wait for the poison to kill him; she had to crush his skull. Realizing the situation looks bad, she tells the detectives that she didn't kill Brian, she was in love with him. Jim thinks she was probably in love with his money. He shows her the picture of Lourdes and Brian and points out the uncanny the resemblance between her and Meghan. She must have thought changing to look more like Lourdes by going under the knife and dying her hair would make him fall in love with her too. Meghan says it was about the money at first, but she grew to love Brian. She thought she could make him happy. As far as the bottles of water go, she says she's given away hundreds of gift baskets, including more than a dozen to Neil Gannon in the last three months trying to convince him to sell. Jim and Jennifer register this as Jim gets a call from Manus, who tells him that she looked into Lourdes's death. Apparently, the investigation was eventually ruled an accident, but tips from a high school friend called the accident into question. For a while, it was treated like a homicide. Jim correctly guesses that the high school friend was Brian. Manus says Brian claimed that while he wasn't there at the time of her death, he knows her drowning at the Micanopy rock pit was no accident. The prime suspect during the investigation was a high school wrestling champion named Bill Wichowski.
Jim and Jennifer arrive at the home of Bill Wichowski, now known as Neil Gannon, to find it battened down with hurricane shutters drawn. Jim bangs on the door and checks the place out. Jennifer tells him that the Florida Highway Patrol is going to block off the causeway. Jim notices that Neil's boat is still at the dock, so he has to be somewhere on the island. They look out into the dense, uninviting subtropical wilderness in front of them and then set off in search of Neil.
Meanwhile, Callie stands at the nurse's station, signing out for the day as Miranda approaches. Miranda smiles, telling Callie that she had fun with her the other night. Callie agrees, saying that a break was definitely what she needed, and thanks Miranda for taking her. But now she's turning off her phone and going into studying lockdown mode. She leaves just as Jim's gift basket arrives.
Sweaty and tired, Jim and Jennifer slog through the untamed landscape. Jim continuously checks his cell, waiting to hear from Callie to acknowledge she received his gift. Jennifer assures him that Callie must be busy and not to worry. She asks Jim what he thinks about the beef between Brian and Neil. Jim guesses that it probably started as a high school rivalry. There was probably some sort of love triangle between Neil, Brian, and Lourdes that eventually turned messy. He guesses Neil, the stud wrestler, probably beat out quiet Brian for Lulu's affection. Brian's clearly been carrying a torch for Lourdes for all of these years. Jennifer says, "You can't help who you fall in love with." Jim uses this as an opportunity to ask about Mike and Jennifer tells him that they haven't ended things, but they should. She found out Mike's married and doesn't plan on leaving his wife anytime soon. She explains that as much as she wants to cut him out of her life immediately, it's hard because she's in love. She stops, not being able to take the humidity, and takes off her blouse revealing a light camisole sticking to her skin. Jim tries not to notice and Jennifer notices him not noticing. Jim does the same, getting down to his undershirt, and they trudge on. They finally arrive at what Jim determines to be an ankle-deep stream. Jim walks in and, although Jennifer is hesitant, she follows him into the water. The water reaches their waists. Suddenly, Jennifer trips over something and tries to grab onto Jim, but he's just out of her reach. She goes down under the water. She pulls herself up, soaking wet and Jim cracks up. Jennifer is not happy about this, but reaches down to see what she tripped on. She lifts her hand to reveal a small camping shovel with a curved blade: the murder weapon. They step out of the water and head toward a recycle and compost bin. They look inside and find Neil's refuse and recyclables. It includes a fancy basket, and empty bottles of Vatn water, which Jim pulls out. Suddenly, the detectives hear a light rustling coming from the trees, but ignore it at first. When they hear it again, they run off. A panther emerges from the bushes and Jim and Jennifer climb up a tree.
The detectives cling to the branches as the panther jumps up at them. Jim reaches for his gun, but realizes that it fell off of him when he was climbing the tree. They are out of options. After a short time, Neil emerges from the bushes, a rifle strapped to his back. He scoops up Jim's gun and pets the panther, who he calls "Sheila," on the head. The panther is obviously his pet. Neil tells the detectives that they're trespassing, but Jim says it's only because they had to arrest him for murder. Jennifer says that before he gets any ideas, they have 30 armed agents surrounding them. Neil says, "Do you mean the two fat sheriffs waving people off my causeway?" He knows there are only three people on the island. Neil tells Sheila to go away and Jim uses the opportunity to distract him. He jumps from the tree and onto him, wrestling him to the ground as Jennifer takes the gun and points it at him. Neil pleads with them, saying that he didn't kill anybody. He locked up his house because he was tired of being bothered by everyone and wanted to get out and clear his head. Jims asks Neil why he lied about his real name. He theorizes it's because Neil knew that they would eventually figure out that he went to school with Brian and hated him and blamed him for Lulu's death. Neil says that what happened to Lourdes was an accident. They were dumb kids and they shouldn't have been swimming in the rock pit. He didn't kill her, but he felt responsible. Brian could never let go, but he suffered a lot, too. Maybe that's why he changed his name and writes romance novels. He tries to write his own happy ending. Jim asks about Brian's happy ending. Neil profited off of Lulu's tragedy with his teen love stories. When Brian won the lottery, he figured the best way to get Neil back was to take away his island and steal his happiness like Neil stole his. Jim theorizes that Neil needed to shut him up once and for all. He poisoned the water he got from Meghan. Jennifer adds that he then silenced him for good with the shovel. But Neil says that's not what happened. He tried to reason with Brian. He even apologized again. But he was acting really strange, like something was wrong with him. He assures them that he never gave him any water. He threw them all out in his recycling bin. He swears that he didn't hurt or kill Brian. He felt bad for him. He figured if he left him alone, maybe he'd come to his senses. Brian was definitely alive when Neil left him. Daniel calls Jim to tell him that he downloaded all of the Internet searches from the suspects. But at this point, Jim already knows who did it. It wasn't someone who was trying to kill Brian; it was someone who wanted to kill Neil.
Lucas sits across the Jim in the interrogation room. Jim tells him that he knows what happened. Lucas researched all there was to know about Destroying Angel. He chose that mushroom because it caused such a painful death. Lucas wanted Neil to suffer like his brother had suffered his whole life over Lourdes' death. He intended to kill Neil and put an end to his brother's misery by poisoning one of the bottles Meghan sent him. But he didn't count on Neil throwing the bottles away and Brian going to the island, where he eventually needed water to drink. After looking around the island, Brian found the water bottles in Neil's recycling bin. Jim says Lucas did talk to Brian that morning. That's when he heard Brain, who sounded completely delirious and in pain. So he went to the island to put his brother out of his misery. He smacked him in the back of the head so he wouldn't have to look him in the face. Lucas reacts to this and tells Jim that after Brian won the money, all he cared about was getting back at Bill (Neil). He knew that as long as Bill was alive, Brian would never be happy and put Lourdes' death behind him. That's why he had to kill him.
Callie and Miranda sit at the nurses' station, eating from a half-picked through basket of goodies. Callie notices that all of the items are her favorites and gets suspicious. She digs through the basket to find a letter addressed to her from Jim. Callie quickly calls Jim and apologizes profusely for having not called sooner. Jim, not his usual perky self when talking to Callie, says it's fine, but she can tell it's not. Callie tells him that Miranda brought her to a medical sales mixer to force her to take a break from studying. Jim sounds even more sad and disappointed. Callie asks if they're OK, and Jim says they are. But by the tone of his voice, Callie isn't convinced. She is about to say something when suddenly a code red goes off in the hospital; it's an emergency. Miranda rushes by Callie telling her she needs to come along. Callie tells Jim she has to go.
Troubled, Jim sits at his desk, then heads out into the substation where the team is gathered around a desk. Seeing how upset he is, Jennifer comes up to him. He asks how she and Mike are able to "figure things out" when they're so far apart. Jennifer tells him that they haven't. She uses the distance to figure out what she really wants. And she finally realized that it was never going to work out. Either he was never going to leave his wife, or she would stop wanting him to. She can't date someone she can't trust. She will know when the right guy comes along. Jim takes this in. Jennifer tells him that Daniel won $100 in the lottery and is taking the team out for beers. Jim declines, saying that he's just not up for going out tonight. He turns and walks out of the station as Jennifer watches him go.