Law & Order: SVU
Original Air Date: Feb 5, 2014
Caitlin – Senior Staff Writer
Olivia wakes from a creepy nightmare before heading to a drugstore- to buy a pregnancy test. She stuffs it casually into her desk and says everything is fine. Later, she learns the test was negative. But she’s not as happy about that fact as she thinks she should be.
Elsewhere, a man waits for his delayed flight and calls home to say he’ll see his wife and their son as soon as he can. When he finally makes it, he goes to see his kid, but the young boy isn’t in his bed. He rouses his wife, who doesn’t realize what happened.
The dad is a doctor working the UN to help babies. The son, Nicky, is adopted from Georgia and, according to a neighbor, is often- and vocally- unhappy with his mother. The window was left open and Olivia wonders if Nicky could have escaped on his own. Because of how long he spent in an orphanage, he has developmental issues. He’s also a diabetic and only has a limited supply of insulin.
While the detectives look for Nicky, they’re stopped by a somewhat smarmy media rep-type police guy who wants to tell the story to the police. After talking with a homeless guy and checking out the trunk of a car, they talk to the parents again. The reason quickly becomes (somewhat) evident when they show the mother an image of her driving with an empty car seat. She breaks down, saying only “I had to.”
We can make some serious guesses as to what Lisa means, but she won’t tell anyone- not even her husband, who she says was never there for her when things were especially bad. When pressed, she claims she gave Nicky to a family in Connecticut that said they could handle him. Neither Olivia nor the representative guy are thrilled, but because of state laws, there’s not too much they can do.
The adoption agency and its records are decidedly sketchy and now Nicky is in the hands of unknown individuals. Remarkably, they’re able to track the couple down. They’re registered sex offenders for their former porn work and seem to have adopted several other kids- perhaps to do “work” for them. A full-scale search leads to an abandoned house. The kids aren’t there any more, but a DVD tells all we need to know.
Amber alerts aren’t doing much to help and Nicky’s parents report (from a phone app) that his blood sugar levels are spiking. A woman is soon found in a pharmacy trying to buy medicine. Amanda pins her down, but her husband may have been tipped off and she’s not cooperating. She was abused and homeless, has worked in porn and has lost a young child. The detectives use that last fact to try and get her to talk about Nicky.
She does seem to genuinely care about the kid, and because of that, she gives up her husband Roger’s location. In the hotel room, they find the other kids- and a baby- left alone. Apparently Roger took Nicky out for “a treat” when his wife didn’t come home. Olivia picks up the baby, and we start to get an idea of why this case lead to her being so emotionally about the results of her own pregnancy test.
The hotel clerk isn’t much help, so Amanda and Olivia try talking to an older girl who stays and helps take care of the other kids. She says Roger brought the baby home as a present. Apparently, he claimed to have found him abandoned in a train station. The search for Nicky turns to an airport. There are no leads, but there is footage of Roger, who’s wheelchair is soon found in a bathroom stall without him in it.
The fact Roger can apparently walk is devastating to his wife, who didn’t suspect it for years. Olivia asks her if he has any accomplices who could have helped him hide Nicky. Nick and Fin interrupt him in the middle of stuffing his face and drag him off after arresting him. The whole time, he says he has no idea what they’re talking about, or even that he has any idea who Nicky is.
He continues to play dumb when interrogated, though he actually brags about the advantages of pretending to be disabled. He’s pretty outraged to know his wife has learned the truth and finally admits he took Nicky to a doughnut shop. Again, remember that he’s a diabetic. Olivia finds him on a plane, passed out in a bathroom. She yells for a doctor, asking if anyone else has insulin.
Later, Nicky is at the hospital with his parents waiting anxiously to see him. When the father goes in, Olivia tells the mother that, if it were to up to her, she wouldn’t get Nicky back. Now we need to focus on the other kids, who have been put in their foster care system. Nobody comes forward to claim the baby either, which seems to weigh on Olivia more than anything else as a judge rules on their welfare.