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MC401
Title A Rose Is a Rose
Series Major Crimes
Season 4
Episode 1
Airdate June 8, 2015
Viewers 3.99 million
Written by Duppy Demetrius
Directed by David McWhirter
Guests
Previous episode Special Master Part Two
Next episode Sorry I Missed You
Episode list Season 4


Season Premiere. The squad investigates a double homicide related to an ongoing string of home invasions in the Hollywood Hills. Meanwhile, Sanchez attempts to reintegrate himself in the division after his suspension over a questionable use of force, while Captain Raydor makes a fateful choice in the life of her adopted son, Rusty.

The VictimEdit

  • Gary David Erwin
    • Retired accountant and widower.
    • Shot three times in the back.
    • Innocent bystander murdered because he waved at Raul Diaz before he entered Lisa Lewis's home to kill her.
  • Lisa Lewis
    • Mother of Ashley and Peter Lewis.
    • Lost her husband two years before and became overbearing out of fear.
    • Cut off contact with her son after he refused to follow her wishes for his life.
    • Murdered by Raul Diaz for Ashley who found Lisa too overbearing in her life.
  • Detective Amy Sykes
    • Tasered by Claudia Rivas during a sting operation to catch the home invaders.

The SuspectsEdit

  • Jim Norton
    • Part of a ring of home invaders.
    • Uses his job as a patrol officer for a security company to case houses to rob.
    • Found selling items stolen from home invasions in Chicago.
    • Was under surveillance by SIS at the time of murders.
    • Works for Remus Home Security with Claudia and Earl.
  • Claudia Rivas
    • Female member of the robbery gang.
    • Tasers homeowners at beginning of robbery, tasered Sykes.
    • Works for Remus Home Security with Earl and Jim.
    • Married to Earl Davis.
  • Earl Davis
    • Other male member of the robbery ring.
    • Works for Remus Home Security with Claudia and Jim.
    • Married to Claudia Rivas.
  • Peter Lewis
    • Lisa Lewis's son.
    • Bought the taser used in the murders for his sister but otherwise innocent.
  • Ashley Lewis
    • Lisa Lewis's daughter.
    • Orchestrated the robbery and murders to get away from her overbearing mother.
    • Bought the flowers used in the murders.
  • Raul Diaz
    • Ashley Lewis's boyfriend who he believed loved him.
    • Manipulated by Ashley to murder her overbearing mother.

EvidenceEdit

  • Flowers and broken vase in the Lewis home.
  • Items stolen from the home.
  • Mr. Lewis's stolen gun.
  • Footage of Jim Norton buying the flowers used in the home invasion.
  • Testimony from Jim Norton.
  • Stun gun bought by Peter Lewis.
  • Interview with Ashley Lewis.
  • Testimony from Raul Diaz.
  • Proof of Ashley Lewis buying the flowers used in the murders.

Closing the CaseEdit

After SIS spots Jim Norton buying the roses that have been a part of every robbery that has been committed, the squad assumes that the robbers are pulling off one last robbery before fleeing town. In response, Major Crimes and SIS set up a sting operation to catch the robbers in the act. When the robbers arrive, they are greeted by Sykes, disguised as the home owner. The female robber tasers Sykes, but as they set up to rob the house, the two are confronted by the squad. Provenza brings down the male with beanbag rounds from a shotgun while Robby Oderno and Tao arrests the woman without trouble. With Sykes stunned but otherwise unharmed, Sharon has Lieutenant Chuck Cooper order his people to arrest Norton.

Following the arrests, Sharon and Tao question Norton while searches have turned up nothing from the robbery of the Lewis home in the three's possession. Sharon brings Norton a picture of him buying the flowers used in the foiled robbery along with the fact that he left them in his patrol car to be collected by Claudia Rivas, the female member of the robbery ring who drove the patrol car next. As Claudia and Earl Davis, the other robber are married, they can't be compelled to testify against each other and Sharon tells Norton that they will likely make a deal implicating him instead.

After considering, Norton agrees to cooperate if they will get him an attorney and a deal of grant theft served in the county jail. A confused Sharon tells Norton that they don't plead down murder to grand theft and shows him the pictures of the victims. Panicked, Norton inadvertently confesses to the home invasions while pointing out inconsistencies in the crime scenes of the murder victims: neither were bound and gagged and the vase is different than the one Norton uses. Sanchez also discovers that the roses are of a different brand. Rusty Beck, while interviewing Lisa's son Peter for a story, finds out that having gone a bit crazy following her husband's death two years previously, Lisa would've never answered the door in her bathrobe and only Peter would've sent her flowers for Mother's Day. Other inconsistencies are found between the Lewis home and the other homes robbed by the gang.

Discussing the inconsistencies, the squad comes to the realization that Norton, Rivas and Davis couldn't have committed the murders. As the details of the robbers MO were published in the news to warn potential victims, they realize that someone could've seen it and faked a home invasion to hide the truth behind the murders. Checking Peter Lewis' finances, Oderno finds a charge on his credit card for a stun gun six weeks before the murders.

Learning that Rusty is interviewing Peter, Sharon quickly pulls him out of the room and has Sanchez read Peter his rights. Sharon then questions Peter about the stun gun and he reveals that he bought it for his sister as her ex-boyfriend was stalking her. The ex-boyfriend then stole the stun gun from her. Peter identifies the ex as Raul Diaz and gives them his address.

At Diaz's home, Cooper attempts to arrest him but Diaz pulls a gun, opens fire on Cooper and runs, chased by Cooper, Sykes and Oderno. At the same time, Flynn and Provenza find Ashley Lewis emerging from Diaz's car, crying that Diaz threatened to kill her like he did her mother. In the trunk of the car, as Flynn drives Ashley to safety, Provenza and Tao find the stun gun. Diaz is ultimately arrested and confesses immediately to the robbery, murders and kidnapping before Sykes and Oderno can even ask a question.

At the station, Provenza, Sykes and Tao report on Diaz's arrest and confession to Sharon and Assistant Chief Russell Taylor. Along with Raul's confession, the gun he had was registered to Lisa Lewis's husband and they found the stolen items in his bedroom. They explain that Diaz told them he felt Ashley was still in love with him and with her mother out of the way, they would be able to be together. Erwin had waved at Diaz as he drove up to the house and Diaz felt he had no choice but to kill him as a result. However, Sharon remains suspicious that there is more to the story such as how Raul knew the combination to the safe or that there was a gun inside.

Along with Flynn, Sanchez then questions Ashley, displaying a much calmer demeanor during the interrogation than he has in times past when Peter tries to leave. Ashley claims that Raul called her, saying that he knew who killed her mother and then when she entered his car, revealed that it was him. Ashley tells Flynn and Sanchez that Raul threatened to kill everyone she loved if she didn't come with him and sleep with him, calling Raul a freak.

Sharon, Tao and Oderno then take a recording of the interview to Raul who breaks down, telling them that he thought Ashley loved him. When Sharon points out that Raul will likely go to prison for the rest of his life for two counts of first degree murder and aggravated kidnapping, Raul tells them that he didn't kidnap Ashley, she called him to pick her up so that she could get her half of the money. Raul tells them that Ashley planned the robbery and murder so that she could get out from under her overbearing mother and the handcuffs from the so-called kidnapping were bought by Raul to stage the murder like the home invasions. Raul is able to provide the squad with the location of the florist where Ashley bought the flowers as proof of her involvement.

Sykes takes Buzz Watson to the flower shop to check for proof of Ashley buying the roses, particularly from the security cameras. After they return with proof, Sykes arrests Ashley Lewis for the murders of Lisa Lewis and Gary David Erwin despite her brother's protests.

Guest CastEdit

RecurringEdit

LocationsEdit

Episode NotesEdit

  • At the end of the episode, while looking for a story, Buzz Watson points Rusty in the direction of the Alice Herrera case. After seeing Alice's picture still on the murder board and realizing what Buzz was trying to tell him, Rusty decides to begin investigating Alice's case himself in an attempt to identify her. He posts his findings in a video blog (vblog) posted on YouTube called Identity. In "Hostage to Fortune", Rusty's efforts pan out and he identifies Alice as Mariana Wallace after locating her brother Gustavo (Gus) Wallace. In "Fifth Dynasty", Mariana is laid to rest with Rusty and the squad in attendance. His reaction at the funeral shows that what started out as a simple story for him ended with him much more emotionally involved.

TriviaEdit

Episode MediaEdit

  • This episode launches a new series of online videos, featuring Graham Patrick Martin as Rusty Beck. With Buzz's encouragement, Rusty has begun a video blog (vlog), reporting his efforts to identify Alice Hererra. The show will release his latest vlog to multiple platforms each Monday, after the episode is broadcast.
What's In a Name Pt02:52

What's In a Name Pt. 1

Identity by Rusty Beck

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