Title Cheaters Never Prosper
Series Major Crimes
Season 1
Episode 9
Airdate October 8, 2012
Viewers 4.33 million
Written by Mike Berchem
Directed by Stacey K. Black
Previous episode Dismissed with Prejudice
Next episode Long Shot
Episode list Season 1

The Major Crimes squad gets involved in the case of a murdered police officer and an identity theft ring. At the same time, Rusty is set to spend a weekend with his biological father who's behavior has Raydor increasingly worried.

The VictimEdit

  • Detective Mike Adams, Las Vegas PD

The SuspectsEdit

  • Doctor Jeremy Durban
  • Laura Elkins


Closing the CaseEdit

While texting with Rusty, Raydor gets an idea and calls Tao and Flynn. As the accounts the identity thieves are using have their own separate email addresses and post office boxes attached to them, Raydor suggests sending an email to each that the LAPD believes they might be the victims of fraud. She figures that it might cause the thieves to panic and move the money into one big account which they may be able to track. They will then freeze the money so that the thieves can't get it back afterwards. Detective Connor is displeased with this move, but it works: monitoring the accounts credit reports, they detect the money being moved into one account under the name of Doctor Jeremy Durban, Professor of Economics at Santa Monica University and not one of the identity theft victims. Believing Durban to be behind the identity theft and Detective Adams' murder, Sykes goes undercover as someone looking for investment information and gives him an iPad running a fingerprint identification program. Using Durban's fingerprints, Tao discovers he has at least four other names, at least one of which has a criminal record for fraud. Flynn figures that the teenagers who stole the victims' laptops were probably Durban's students and decides to arrest him despite Julio's disbelief that Durban would be involved in murder or at the bar that Adams was found at. After receiving the order, Sykes gleefully arrests Durban for Adams' murder as he was annoying her. Durban, who has driver's licenses with 30 different names at his apartment alone, waives his right to an attorney, insisting that he didn't commit murder or fraud as he never stole any money from any of the people he took the identities from and paid back every loan he got in their names. When he points out that they can check the credit report to confirm that, Raydor realizes that a person's credit report is the only way to track identity fraud and that Laura Elkins' wasn't in the case files that Connor gave them despite Adams continually running her driver's license, they had to ask for her permission to check her finances. Checking the flash drives they recovered from Durban, they discover Elkins' stolen information isn't among them causing Connor to quickly tell them that he never said Elkins was part of the identity theft case and they jumped to their own conclusions. Raydor and Flynn pull him aside, enraged that he lied about the case and used them to solve it while knowing full well the identity theft had nothing to do with the murder. After Raydor threatens to call Internal Affairs, Connor finally starts to cooperate: Adams had a habit of having affairs with the victims he interviewed and if they gave him even some kind of glimmer of hope, he'd stalk them. Elkins was his type and he had a complaint filed against him seven months earlier. It becomes apparent that Adams stalked Elkins to her home in LA, something Connor says is new and means that Adams' behavior was escalating. As Raydor asks whether or not there were any other women in LA Adams might've been stalking, Flynn notices a problem on Elkins credit report: despite telling them her laptop was vital for her business, Elkins has not replaced it since she reported it stolen and neither has any of her family bought anything expensive enough to be a laptop. Flynn and Raydor bring Elkins in for questioning while the police search her house and locate her supposedly stolen laptop on her desk where it should be. Confronted with the evidence of her lie, Elkins breaks down and tells her story to Raydor and Flynn who pretend to be sympathetic: she met Adams when she was at a hotel in Las Vegas and left her laptop downstairs. Adams returned it to her and warned her about the identity theft ring and how she might be in danger from it. They had what she thought would be a one-night stand but he began stalking her afterwards, calling and texting all the time and then showing up at her house and telling her husband and children he was worried she might be part of the case. Adams refused to leave her alone and demanded she meet him at the bar. When he refused to back off, she dosed two of his drinks with antifreeze. Flynn arrests her for premeditated murder and before they take her to see the DDA to make a deal, Raydor warns her to stop talking before she talks her way onto death row. As they can't prove that Durban intended to permanently deprive his victims of the money he stole, the squad turns him over to Connor to face the identity theft charges in Nevada and he requests they not be too hard on his students that stole the laptops as they just did it for good grades. Although they speculate that Durban might get away with the charges in Nevada too, he is wanted in five other states so he will likely get charged with something that will stick. They also hope to one day learn his real name as Durban is just another alias.

Guest CastEdit

  • Sprague Grayden as Laura Elkins
  • Michael Rodrick as Detective Richard Conner
  • Eric Lange as Dr. Jeremy Durban
  • Ronnie Tyrone Lee as Detective Mike Adams
  • Michael Harris as Club Bouncer



Episode NotesEdit

  • When talking with Sharon Raydor at the end of the episode, Rusty Beck tells her more about his abandonment at the zoo by his mother's boyfriend and the abuse he suffered at the man's hands. This is further explored in the five-part "Hindsight" arc when both Sharon Beck and her ex-boyfriend Gary Lewis return to Rusty's life.
  • While Sharon is texting Rusty, her phone gives the date as October 6th.


Episode MediaEdit