Review: CSI: Miami — ‘Killer Regrets’

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The Miami team protects a sheriff from Mexico, who is being targeted by the Mala Noche gang.

Synopsis:

Sheriff Anita Torres is on her way to work in La Cancion, Mexico when her husband’s car explodes with him inside. She heads to Miami with her brother Carlos to consult with Horatio. The Mala Noche gang is behind Geraldo’s death, and she believes Memmo Fierro ordered the hit. Memmo claims he wasn’t involved, and the hit came from Mexico eight months ago. The killer, El Asesino, won’t stop until Anita is dead.

The bomb was created using a WWII grenade, which traces back to a weapons stockpile in Texas. The man who runs it, Brendon Dwyer, has an office in Miami, and Calleigh and Eric speak with him. He says the stockpile was robbed a year ago, and he got shot in the process. There are rumors that Anita’s husband was working with Mala Noche, and Carlos admits that the gang approached them once while they were eating in a restaurant. They told Geraldo to take care of his wife or they would, and they left a stack of money on the table. He put the money in a church box and told Carlos not to tell his sister.

Anita and Carlos head to a safe house, but a hit man gets in and tries to kill them. The man gets away, but he is wounded. Anita got paint under her fingernails from the hit man, which leads the team to a Mala Noche member who huffs paint, Luis. He has a gunshot wound on his arm. El Asesino is the one who shot him because he knows it’s his job to kill Anita. Luis wasn’t behind the car bombing. If the CSIs want answers, they need to get them from Memmo.

Memmo reveals that El Asesino is set to make a weapons buy, and they find Brendon Dwyer at the location. He works for the government, and they were trying to use weapons to track the low level Mala Noche members in order to find the upper level ones. There are sensors hidden inside the guns, which the gang was able to find and remove easily. However, there is also a second set of sensors inside some of the weapons, which the Mala Noche didn’t remove. One of these weapons is a special order .22, which Eric tracks to the house where Anita and Carlos are staying. They find the gun in Carlos’ bag, but the young man insists that he found the weapon under Geraldo’s dresser back in La Cancion.

Geraldo’s glasses were found at the scene of the bombing, but there’s no evidence of blood on any of the debris. He faked his own death—Geraldo is El Asesino. He met Anita eight months ago when the gang put out the hit on her, but he fell in love with her and couldn’t bring himself to finish the job. He hoped his “death” would make her quit her job, giving Mala Noche no reason to continue going after her. He came to the safe house to protect her, and that’s why he shot at Luis. The only way to draw Geraldo out is for him to think the Mala Noche got to Anita. They pretend she got shot and announce it on the news, and Geraldo rushes to the hospital. When he realizes what is going on, he pulls his gun, and Horatio is forced to shoot him.


Analysis:

“Killer Regrets” finds the team dealing with the Mala Noche gang once again. This time, the gang ostensibly kills the husband of Sheriff Anita Torres in La Cancion, Mexico, and the woman heads to Miami to get the help of Horatio Caine. I guess Horatio is the international authority on the Mala Noche—or at least Memmo Fierro, the gang member who killed Horatio’s wife Marisol. Horatio recaptured Memmo in “Last Stand” after he escaped from prison last season, and this week he is forced to visit the man in jail to ask questions about the gang. Anita is sure that Memmo ordered the hit, and Horatio is willing to use any means necessary to get information from the man. He threatens to have Memmo’s daughter Elsa, who was seen in “Manhunt”, taken away from her mother. Memmo is reluctant to help the CSIs, but he does respond to the threat against his family. He tells Horatio to hit him so it won’t look too suspicious that Memmo is talking to a cop in jail. Horatio doesn’t hesitate to slam his fist into Memmo’s face, and Memmo points out that he’s “been holding on to that for a while.”

Memmo wasn’t behind the hit. He says the gang sent a man called El Asesino to kill the sheriff, who has been causing trouble for the gang since she took charge. Horatio wants the name of El Asesino, but Memmo says only his victims know who he is—and they’re keeping his identity secret. Horatio expects him to find out something useful. Memmo wants to see his daughter, but Horatio won’t agree to that. The most he’s willing to do is give the man a steak. Frank, Eric and Ryan are reluctant to go to Memmo for answers, but Frank says they may have to “dance with the devil to get out of hell.” Horatio goes to jail and brings Memmo a steak, and Memmo finally offers something worthwhile: the time and location of the weapons buy, where he assumes the team will be able to find El Asesino.

The team is surprised to find an ATF agent delivering a truck full of weapons for gang members, and they are skeptical when he mentions that the government sent him on purpose so they could track the guns to find gang members higher up in the food chain. The whole scheme sounds like the “Fast and Furious” operation, in which the ATF reportedly allowed nearly 2,000 guns to be smuggled into Mexico over a 15 month period, without the knowledge of the Mexican government. The purpose was to track the guns to drug cartel leaders, but many of the weapons were used in crimes—including the death of a US border patrol agent in Arizona.

I’m not sure how Carlos is able to bring the .22 into the country in his backpack. I’m no expert on gun laws or bringing weapons into the US, but that seems like a major plot hole to me. Would Anita even have been allowed to have her gun if she wasn’t on official police business? I can chalk most of it up to the writers using dramatic license to keep the story moving, but it does stand out to me.

“Killer Regrets” continues an ongoing storyline while setting up the possibility for a very interesting plotline in the future. The team first dealt with Inspector Scott O’Shay in “Look Who’s Taunting”, when he prevented them from executing a search warrant that may have nabbed a killer. O’Shay runs the Mayor’s civilian oversight panel, and his goal is to police the actions of law enforcement officers to ensure that they are doing their jobs correctly. This week, O’Shay confronts Calleigh about working on the bomb evidence from the Torres case despite the fact that they have no legal right to process it. Calleigh refuses to apologize, telling O’Shay that the grenade from the bombing is from an ATF facility in Texas, and the man who heads it has an office in Miami. It would only take a car ride to check the man out. O’Shay is unimpressed; he reminds her that Hank Kradic is on the oversight panel with him, and the man also donated the Hummers used by the lab. Later in the episode, when the Mala Noche hit man breaks into the house where Anita and Carlos are staying and tries to kill them, Calleigh rushes out to her Hummer to head to the scene—only to find that the car won’t start. She angrily confronts O’Shay, who says Kradic had it cut off remotely when he heard about its “foreign use.” She reminds him that a cop was killed during that shooting, and she sends a message to Kradic: if he ever messes with her car again, she’ll have him arrested for obstruction at the very least. This team won’t put up with anybody preventing them from doing their job, and I’m curious to see where things go from here.

At the end of the episode, O’Shay approaches Walter and says the CSI has “great potential”. Walter thanks him, but he isn’t sure what it is that O’Shay wants. The inspector says he just wants cooperation, and he gives Walter his card before walking away. Calleigh approaches Walter, having seen the exchange from afar. Walter insists that he would never work with a man like O’Shay, but Calleigh suggests that it might be a good idea for Walter to let O’Shay think he’s willing to work with him. I’m looking forward to watching this play out. There’s no doubt in my mind that Walter will prove himself, but I hope he doesn’t find himself in danger in the process.

When the hour draws to a close, Horatio visits Memmo in jail one last time. Memmo has been beaten up, and he was demoted in the gang. He asks if his daughter is doing well, and Horatio says that Elsa is fine. Memmo brings up something Horatio mentioned earlier: Horatio suggested that Memmo should start working to earn the “grace” he was given, and Memmo asks at the end of the episode if working with Horatio might have helped in that regard. Horatio says that’s up to Memmo, and while I don’t know that Horatio could ever actually forgive the man, I do wonder if we’ll be seeing him help the team again this season.


See also: “Killer Regrets” episode guide

Rachel Trongo

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Rachel Trongo

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