Law & Order (1990–2010): Season 22, Episode 18 - Law & Order - full transcript

When a young woman dies a slow and painful death from an untreated infection, Cosgrove and Shaw suspect she was under the influence of a powerful cult; Price and Maroun put pressure on its members to find the cult's true mastermind.

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- In the criminal
justice system,

the people are represented

by two separate, yet
equally important groups:

the police, who
investigate crime,

and the district attorneys,
who prosecute the offenders.

These are their stories.

Hi, this is Jenny.
Leave a message.

Hi, Mom.

Sorry I haven't been
in touch for a while.

Things have been a little
crazy lately with classes

and work at the coffee shop.

I miss you.

Let's get together soon.

Maybe dinner at the
Jupiter or something?

I love you. [door creaks open]

Okay. I gotta go.

Tell Dad I love him
too. [door slams]


[ominous music]

I'm really not feeling well.

Restaurant worker found
her in the dumpster.

Body's been rolled
up in that rug.

Any ID?

No wallet. No phone, either.

Approximate age?

17 or 18. Your guess
is as good as mine.

Time of death?

MLI said she's been
dead at least a day.

Probably been here a few hours.

Cause of death?

- No obvious signs of trauma.
- [groans]

♪ ♪

What is that?

Looks like a brand.

Lone star?

What is that, Texas?

No, no, no. Lodestar.

Means inspiration or a guiding
light for a ship at night.

What the hell guided her here?

[dramatic music]

♪ ♪

Young lady at the end.

What did she die of?

She died of septic shock.

The wound from the
branding got infected.

It was festering for
a couple of weeks.

And she never got any
medical treatment.

Probably because of this.

- Ligature marks.
- Mm-hmm.

So she was being held
against her will.

Meanwhile, the infection spread.

Sepsis caused tissue damage
and ultimately, organ failure.

Any estimate on her age?

The forensic odontologist
put her in her early 20s.

She seemed a hell of a
lot younger than that.

Malnutrition will do that.

She probably comes from money.

Has expensive dental work.

So nobody in Missing Persons
matches her description.

Facial rec was a bust.

And the branding design didn't
turn up in any database.

- You run her prints?
- Not in the system.

Only thing I found was
this in her pocket.

It's got a logo
to a music store.

Sharp Sounds Music.

That's Ava. What the
hell happened to her?

That's what we're
trying to figure out.

She died of an infection.

- An infection?
- Was she in here recently?

It's been a couple months.

She was super sweet
and really nice.

We're trying to identify her.

Maybe you know her last name?

I'm sorry.

What about a receipt?
Maybe she bought something.

No, I gave her a
couple guitar picks.

I gave her a harmonica too.

I kind of felt sorry for her.

Why is that?

She seemed lost.

She used to stop by the
store every now and then,

you know, ask to play
some of the guitars.

I loved listening to her.

You know, she was
really talented.

She ever come in
here with anybody?

Uh, yeah, a dude.

Oh, yeah? What'd he look like?

Early 20s, dreadlocks.

Don't suppose you know
where we can find him.

Yeah, sometimes he
busks at that park

a couple blocks south of here.

Name's Ken something.

- Thanks.
- Thank you.

[mellow acoustic music]

Excuse me.

Excuse me, Ken.

Ken, we need a word.

It's primetime right now, man.

Can this wait?

Unfortunately, it can't.

Ava and I met senior
year at Tufts.

We both wanted to be musicians.

We moved in together
right after graduation.

A few months ago, she
started hanging out

with a new group of friends,

said she was looking to
deepen her creative forces.

Kicked me to the curb.

That make you mad?

Bummed me out, but
I didn't kill her.

I loved her.

We wanna get in touch
with her parents.

You know her last name?


They live on the
Upper East Side.

When was the last
time you saw her?

We were supposed
to meet up at a bar

in Red Hook five days ago.

I wanted to apologize
for some things.

She stood you up?

Someone said they saw her
outside the bar running away.

I went to go check,
but she wasn't there,

so I figured she changed
her mind about meeting me.

We need the name of the bar.

Sorry, guys. We're
not open yet.

Come back in an hour.


You the manager?

I'm the owner. How can I help?

You seen this girl
around here before?

Doesn't look familiar.

- What about this guy?
- Yeah, yeah, yeah.

He comes in from time to time.

Did he do something?

We're not sure.

How long these
cameras store video?

About a week.

Love to see the footage.



I tracked down
the vic's parents.

Father is a Wall
Street big shot.

The mother is a
network news anchor.

Uh, Jenny Newhall?

Oh, my wife loves her.

Well, they're in Palm Beach,

but they're headed
back to New York now.


How are we doing with
that video from the bar?

Going through it now.

Ava's ex-boyfriend
was definitely there.

- Yeah, does she ever show?
- Not exactly.

This is about a
block from the bar.

[suspenseful music]

There's Ava.

Whoa, whoa, whoa.
Hey, hey, hey, hey.

That's attempted kidnapping.

Who the hell is this guy?


All right, find out
who that guy was.

I'll run the plates.

♪ ♪

There's our car.

Donnie Preston.


What are you doing? This
is my car, my house.

Is there a problem?


Hands above your head.

Touch the fence.

Keep your hands on the fence.

Do not move.

I didn't do nothing.

Yeah, well, you got
a lot of firepower

for a guy who didn't do nothing.

They're legal.

What's this all about?

Attempted kidnapping,
for starters.

♪ ♪

It's not what you think.

I wasn't gonna hurt her.

No, you were just gonna
drive her around the city,

maybe grab a cocktail
at the Polo Lounge,

and then drop her off safe
and sound at home, right?

Look, I know Ava's parents.

I'm the doorman
in their building.

Her mother hired me,
paid me 20 grand,

half upfront and the
other half upon delivery.

What do you mean delivery?

I was supposed to
bring the kid home.

Come on, bro.

You're trying to make us believe

that Ava's parents
hired you to kidnap her?

No. I was trying to save her.

- From what?
- I don't know. I didn't ask.

I got bills to pay just
like everyone else.

- [knock at door]
- Yeah.

Ava's parents are here.

Sit tight.

She sent us a strange voicemail

a couple of days ago.

We tried calling, but
she never picked up.

This is exactly what we
were trying to prevent.

It's why we hired Donnie.

Was your daughter in
some kind of trouble?

Yes, she was.

She'd apparently joined
some sort of cult.

She went to a meeting,
a group dedicated

to unlocking their creativity
or something like that.

Ava had been
depressed, uninspired.

Anyway, she seemed
really excited about it,

- so we were supportive.
- At first.

But then it started to spiral.

Was she living with
anyone at this cult?

I think so.

She pretty much cut off
all contact with us.

Except when she wanted money.

These people tried
to bleed her dry.

They emptied her bank
accounts and then started

taking from her trust fund.

Thank God my lawyer called me.

We put a freeze on the account.

So you cut her off?

I had to.

How did she take that?

She just kept
repeating this mantra.

"I'm not a victim.
Lodestar is my guide.

I will manifest my future."

It's like she wasn't
herself anymore.

We just... we couldn't
connect with her, the...

The real her.

So you hired your doorman
to bring her home?

I assume that means you
know where she was living.

[suspenseful music]

♪ ♪

Sisters, these detectives
just told me we lost Ava.

- [gasps]
- Oh, no.

I don't understand
what happened.

Ava was on a righteous
path. She was a warrior.

I'm sure she was,
but unfortunately,

that's not how we found her.

When was the last time
any of you saw Ava?

I haven't seen
her in a few days.

Me, either.

I went to her room this morning.

I was gonna give her
a cup of mint tea,

but she wasn't there.

I saw her two nights ago.

I think she was going
to watch some bands.

She didn't look like she was
going out to listen to music.

She was still in her pajamas.

She wasn't even wearing shoes.

What exactly goes
on in this house?

We're just a community of women

dedicated to creativity
and self-actualization.

Oh. Who's in charge?

We're all in charge,

yet at the same time,
we're all subordinate.

So let me get this straight.

Ava died from an infection

that was spreading for
days, maybe even weeks.

She was rolled up in a carpet
and tossed into a dumpster.

Nobody here noticed anything
out of the ordinary.

♪ ♪

And no one can tell me
what happened to her.

You look familiar to me.

How do I know you?

I'd like to ask you
a few questions.

Why don't you grab your
coat and step outside?

Let's go.

♪ ♪

Sorry for your loss.

You really found
Ava in the dumpster?

- What's your name?
- Sienna Barton.

I recognized that hand signal.

You were asking for help, right?

I have a daughter
about your age.

She learned it on social media.

- I need to talk to my parents.
- Sure.

I'll get you a
phone. Come here.

Hold on. You're safe with us.

No one's gonna hurt you.

It's okay. It's okay.
Just take a breath.

You know your friend
Ava was sick, right?

She had a brand
that got infected.

You know anything about that?

I don't wanna talk
about all this.

I need to call my parents.

Then why don't we call
them from the car?

It's probably safer.

Is that okay?

♪ ♪

Ava and I worked in
the same coffee shop.

She said she was
feeling kind of stuck,

so I told her about
this group, Lodestar.

I thought we could help.

Was she being held
against her will?

No. We were all
there voluntarily.

Can you explain
the ligature marks?

On her wrists, she
had these marks.

It looked like she
was being restrained.

That's from the
branding ceremony.

It kind of hurts, so
we tie everyone down.

When was she branded?

A couple of weeks ago.

That wound got infected.
That's what killed her.

Did you... did you notice
her health was deteriorating?

She seemed okay,
but I didn't really

see her much in
the past few days.

Did somebody prevent her
from seeing a doctor?

Not exactly.

I'm sorry, but it's complicated.

You can tell us what
you're afraid of.

I'm not a victim.

Lodestar is my guide. I
will manifest my future.

[suspenseful music]

We respect that, but
a woman has died.

You know that you
participated in an assault?

Sienna, sweetheart.

This is my daughter.

I wanna talk to her alone.

I think we should charge her.

With what?

Assault, conspiracy,

She admitted she
participated in the branding.

No, I get it, but I just...

I don't think that's enough.

We charge manslaughter when kids

drink themselves to death
at fraternity hazings.

Yeah, but that's not
what happened here.

There's a time gap.

She had enough time
to go to a doctor.

Maybe somebody didn't let her

because going to get
medical treatment

would have drawn
attention to the cult.

Okay. Fair enough.

So if you can find
evidence that the person

who branded Ava also prevented
her from going to the doctor

and then dumped her body,

we can charge that
person with homicide.

Police. Open up.


We're executing
a search warrant.

We need to enter the premises.

Step back, miss.

Please step back.

- Move into that room, please.
- Come on.

- Ladies, let's go.
- Hey, let's go. Come on.

I need everyone to
stop what they're doing

and move over to
this room. Come on.

Move along. Have a seat.

Keep an eye on them.

Where's Ava's room?

It's over there at
the end of the hall.

- Whose room is that?
- That's my room.

Please have a seat.

♪ ♪

I was just in Ava's bedroom.

Couldn't find a cell phone,
but I found a brand new carpet

with the price tag still on it.

I got a receipt for an
8 by 10 foot carpet,

purchased this morning.

- Paid for by Jocelyn Davis.
- Get out of here.

So she replaced the carpet,

which shows
consciousness of guilt.

Means we can prove Ava
was killed in her bedroom.

Also means we can prove
Jocelyn lied to us.

She said that Ava
went to go see a band

and never came home.

There she is.

I got the branding iron.

Well, that's three
strikes against Jocelyn.

Jocelyn, could you
come over here, please?

We need a word.

You can't take control over me.

You can't break the circle.

These bonds, they're

You don't wanna
interfere in an arrest.

We stand united.

Yeah, that's not how this works.

So you back off now,

or we're gonna do
our own division.

Frank, let's try a
different approach.

Jocelyn, you seem
like a smart woman.

Come with us.

Okay, all of you
listen to me closely.

We can do this the easy way,

or we can do this
my partner's way.

Up to you.

♪ ♪

It's okay.

We haven't done anything wrong.

Put your hands behind your back.

You're under arrest for
the death of Ava Newhall.

This is a branding iron
we found in your bedroom.

Your fingerprints were
lifted from the handle.

Ava's DNA was found
on the Lodestar stamp.

Ava consented to the branding.

We both know consent
is not a defense

to the infliction of
serious bodily injury.

And we found this
carpet in the dumpster.

It was used to hide and
transport Ava's dead body.

Crime lab technicians
recovered a few strands

of hair in the fibers.

Matches your client's DNA...

Strong evidence that she's the
one who disposed of the body.

Why did you throw
her into a dumpster?

Why didn't you call her parents?

Why didn't you call 911?

Don't answer that.

From where I sit, you didn't
want her to get any help.

You didn't want the doctors
to see her branding.

You knew that would
expose you and your cult.

Who helped you carry the body?

'Cause there was no way
that you lugged her body

out of the loft by yourself.

Ava Newhall got sick
from the branding.

We don't deny that.

But she was awake and alert

and able to move and
make her own decisions.

She could have called the
doctor or her parents.

Tough to do when
you're tied down.

This is absurd.

There is no causal connection
between my client's

alleged actions and Ava's death.

Come on. We're
getting out of here.

May I?

Charge her.

Charge her with what?

♪ ♪

The defendant is charged
with aggravated assault

and illegal disposal
of a corpse.

Are the People seeking bail?

We're seeking 1 million cash.

$1 million?

At most she's facing
a few years probation.

Point taken.

Why should I impose
bail, Ms. Maroun?

The defendant
branded another woman

as part of an
initiation into a cult.

The wound got infected
and Ava Newhall died.

Then the defendant dumped
her dead body in the trash.

Your Honor, my client
has no criminal record.

She is not a flight risk.

The people are
simply punishing her

for her unconventional

These are trumped up charges
that will go nowhere.

We're asking for personal.

The defendant is currently
under investigation for murder.

If the people wanna
charge murder,

come back and I'll
reconsider the bail.

Until then, I'm releasing
her on her own recognizance.

Can I go? Am I free?


Next case. [gavel bangs]

What the hell happened in there?

It's only the arraignment.

We thought the judge
would hold her.

Bail is only to assure
that she'll return.

I don't need a lecture
from you on bail.

I know how the system works.

The woman who
killed my daughter,

rolled her body up in a carpet,
and tossed her in a dumpster

gets to go home to
her comfortable loft

while our daughter lies in a
coffin in Woodland Cemetery.


[indistinct chatter]

No. No! Stop. It's okay.

Well, Jocelyn Davis just
waltzed out of the courtroom.

She's probably out buying a
new branding iron as we speak.

Don't you have her on
a couple of felonies?


So chances are she'll end
up serving a year or two.

That's not enough.
Not even close.

Do you have any evidence to
suggest that Jocelyn Davis

is responsible for the
death of this young woman?

No, but that doesn't mean
she's not responsible.

She's a cult leader, Nolan.

She recruits young,
vulnerable women

fresh out of college
just trying to figure out

what to do with
their lives, then...

Then she preys on
them, controls them,

manipulates them,
steals their money.

She's the reason a
22-year-old woman is dead.

Fair enough, but you're
just saying things.

There's no real evidence
to support this.

No. I know.

If you want me to
prosecute it as a homicide,

you need something concrete,
something that shows

that Jocelyn prevented Ava

from getting treatment
for her wounds.

I tried, but none of
the women in the cult

are willing to cooperate.

Well, then work with Forensics.

See if you can find
texts or voicemails

that show that Jocelyn
exercised control over Ava,

something that prevented her
from seeking medical attention.

I've done a deep dive
into Jocelyn's devices.

She didn't send any texts
or voicemails to Ava,

but I did find some
disturbing videos.

This is Sienna Barton's.

Last year, I volunteered
at an emergency shelter

for abused women and children.

[suspenseful music]

♪ ♪

I stole money from one of
the women who lived there.

$1,000, probably all the money
that she had in the world.

When she realized the
money was missing,

I blamed somebody else,
and that person got fired,

and she was arrested.

But I'm not a victim.

I own what I did.

Still, if my family...

[sighs] Or my
friends find out...

I'd want to kill myself.

I am so ashamed.

I share this confession
as an expression of trust

for my entry into Lodestar.

♪ ♪

That's why she didn't
wanna cooperate.

She was afraid of being exposed.

Looks that way.

What about Ava? She
make any confessions?

Yeah. Check it out.

My mom is kind of famous.

She's the anchor on
"Evening in America."

She's... she's having an affair

with one of the
political correspondents.

If my dad knew,
he'd be heartbroken,

and she'd lose her job for sure.

But I trust you with
this confession.

I am not a victim.

I am on a path to
creative enlightenment.

I am sharing this confession
as an expression of trust

for my entry into Lodestar.


The video confessions show
that Jocelyn had the power

to exert tremendous
pressure over these women

to get them to do
whatever she wanted.

That's good news.

Once they gave over
their confessions,

the women couldn't walk away.

They'd live in fear that their
secrets would be revealed.

Took away their free will.

And it explains why Ava
didn't seek medical treatment

for her infection.
She felt threatened.

And she wanted to
protect her mother.

That makes it a kidnapping.

Which is a felony.

Since Ava died during the
course of that felony...

It's a felony murder.

There's our homicide case.

We've elevated the
charges to felony murder.

Thank you.

And she's been rearrested
and held without bail.

You have no idea how
much we appreciate that.

We have to warn you.

It's gonna come at a cost.

What do you mean?

There are things that are
gonna come out at trial.

Things about Ava?

Things about the family.

We don't care. We just
want justice for Ava.

But what kind of things?

Ava shared some
secrets with the group.

We don't have anything to hide.

Right, honey?

♪ ♪

She was a free spirit,
so smart and creative.

And she was a musician.

She played the
guitar and she sang.

We wanted her to go to
graduate school at Berkeley.

She'd filled out
the applications,

but, like most creatives,
she had her demons.

She was going through
a period of self-doubt.

Was it during this period
that she was introduced

to the defendant, Jocelyn Davis?


She sucked the life out of
her, took away her autonomy,

imposed harmful and
arbitrary rules.

So the defendant exercised
control over Ava?

Once, when I hadn't
seen Ava in a few weeks,

I begged her to
meet me for lunch.

And were you able to
see your own daughter?

Ava said that she had
to check with Jocelyn.

And Jocelyn told her
that she needed to focus

on her creative enlightenment.

So the defendant
controlled Ava's movements.

She dictated who she could
and couldn't socialize with.



Are you aware of
a video confession

Ava made to the defendant?

[suspenseful music]

I don't know how she
found out, but...

Ava knew that I was having
an affair with a colleague,

and she knew that if
it got out, my marriage

and my career would
suffer tremendously.

♪ ♪

Was Ava protective of you?

Of your marriage or your career?


I believe that Ava
went to her grave

in order to protect my secret.

Thank you.

Nothing further.

You can't prove that my
client used this information

to threaten your
daughter, can you?

Objection... Ms. Newhall
is simply a witness.

Not her burden to prove
or disprove anything.


You can't testify my client
prevented your daughter

from calling a doctor
or going to a hospital.

No, but one can infer.

Here, in a court of law, we
deal in facts and evidence,

not what one can infer.

Your Honor, I have nothing
further for this witness.

I move for a directed verdict.

Your Honor, the people
submit that there's...

Hold it, Mr. Price.

I'll see all counsels
in my chambers.

The people have
no concrete proof

that my client
committed a kidnapping.

There is nothing to
show that Ava Newhall

was being held against her will.

Mr. Price, is that true?

People are allowed to present
a circumstantial case.

That may be, but
if you can't offer

a direct causal connection
between the defendant

and the victim's failure
to seek medical assistance,

I'm prepared to issue
a directed verdict

and find Jocelyn Davis not
guilty as a matter of law.

That won't be necessary.

We have a witness who will
tie all the elements together

and establish that Ava
wasn't free to leave the loft

and seek medical help.

What are you talking about?

Or better yet, who
are you talking about?

Sienna Barton.

Sienna B... no.

Not a chance in hell
she's gonna cooperate.

I told you before, I
don't want to testify.

Sienna has been
through hell and back.

That is exactly why I need her.

She has to tell the jury
what she and Ava endured.

We know all the
women in the cult

were required to share
embarrassing things

about their past.

We watched your
video confession.

I know it feels
like a huge deal.

You did something shameful
when you worked at a shelter,

but it's not the
end of the world.

It is for me.

Can't you people
just leave her alone?

Sienna's testimony is critical.

She can prove that Jocelyn
used the confessions

to threaten women
into submission.

And more specifically,
it'll prove why Ava

was afraid to seek medical
help and ended up dead.

I want to help you, but...

Sienna, like it or not,

you played a role in all this.

You held Ava down
while she was branded.

What exactly are you saying?

She doesn't cooperate,
we will charge her

with several felonies.

Assault, kidnapping,

Are you crazy?

She's the victim here.

She was brainwashed and branded.

Doesn't mean she didn't
commit a crime too.

She could spend a
few years in prison.

I know that you have suffered

tremendous emotional
and physical pain.

We wanna hold the person
who did this to you

and who killed Ava responsible.

And to do that,
we need your help.

And if she cooperates?

We'll immunize her. We'll
treat her as a victim.

And she will go
back home with you.

Be smart, Sienna.

Your future depends on it.

[suspenseful music]

♪ ♪

Did Jocelyn Davis prevent Ava

from getting medical
treatment for her wound?


Did she render any aid herself?

She told me she put
bandages on the wound,

gave her painkillers.

Can you please tell the jury

how the defendant convinced
Ava to stay in her room?

Jocelyn threatened to
release her confession.

Ava was scared.

She wanted to get help, but she
felt like she had no choice.

Jocelyn Davis held
all the confessions.

She made all the decisions.
She was in charge.

Yes. Well...

Not exactly.

Lodestar was really in charge.


He's our supreme leader.

Lodestar is a person?


We didn't meet him until
after we'd been branded,

after we gave our confessions.

Had Ava met him?

Not yet. She was going to.

Did Lodestar have
influence over Jocelyn?

He controlled all of
us, including Jocelyn.

He set the rules, told
us where we could go,

who we could socialize
with, what we could eat.

He, um, liked us to be thin.

- And the money?
- He kept our money.

What about the confessions?

Jocelyn sent them to him.

Anything else?

There was the sex.

♪ ♪

The real head of the cult
is this guy, Zach Elfont.

He gets Jocelyn Davis to control

and manipulate the women,

pressure them to donate
money to the cult,

but it's really a guise
for this Zach Elfont guy

to get rich and have
sex with young women.

Sounds like the NXIVM cult.

It's more like a sick copycat.

No one at NXIVM died
from their branding.

Why are we just learning
about Elfont now?

His name never came up.

Members of the cult have
obviously been protecting him.

But he's the one
calling the shots?


Jocelyn gives him
the confessions,

and he uses them to coerce women

into doing whatever he wants.

So this whole thing
is about pleasing

a sociopathic narcissist?

I wanna charge Elfont
with felony murder.

What's stopping you?

Sienna can't testify about

his involvement
with Ava's death.

I can't prove that
without Jocelyn.

Then try to flip Jocelyn.

We'd like your cooperation.

And in exchange?

We are prepared to
offer full immunity,

dismiss all charges.

I can't.

I can't turn on Lodestar.

We just want you to tell the
truth about what happened.

The truth is, he's a great guy.

I'd be nothing without him.

I was a 16-year-old punk
when I met Lodestar.


Did he have sex with
you at that age?

That's not important.

You were a minor.

He exerted tremendous
influence over you.

Lodestar saved me.

I grew up with an
abusive stepfather.

I ran away.

I started doing drugs, stealing.

And then I met him.

And he took advantage of you.

♪ ♪

I'm not a victim.

He taught me to
stand up for myself,

and that's what I'm doing.

Don't you hear the irony?

He has trained you to believe
that you're not a victim.

And all the while, he's
been victimizing you.

You're facing life in
prison because of him.

Jocelyn, they are
offering a fair deal.

Think about it.
Protect yourself.

♪ ♪

We are going to get him

with or without you.

You'll never get
anywhere in your journey

until you stop complaining
about what the world owes you.

The world owes you nothing.

You have to stop
acting like victims.

Excuse me, Lodestar.

- Can I help you?
- We'll see about that. NYPD.

Take your hands
out of your pocket.

Put your hands behind your back.

Okay, hold on.
What are you doing?

We're taking you on your own
journey to enlightenment.

[women arguing]

- He hasn't done anything.
- Stop!

He hasn't done anything wrong.

We've developed a
strong homicide case

against you, Mr. Elfont.

Jocelyn called me from the jail.

She said you tried
to pressure her.

She's not gonna
testify against me.

We don't need her testimony.

Forensic analysis of your
phone shows that Jocelyn texted

Ava's confession to you.

I never asked her to
send me those things.

The woman has an unhealthy
obsession with me.

She was jealous of Ava.


We also have GPS and
surveillance video

of your car outside the
loft and near the dumpster

around the time that Ava died.

Jocelyn borrowed my
car all the time.

Bank records show that
Jocelyn sent you all the money

she collected from the women.

I run a business.

I help women who wanna
tap into their creativity.

Jocelyn worked for me.

She helped to collect tuition.

And oh, by the way, I
slept with some of them.

Nothing illegal about that.

All this stuff about
branding and confessions

and cults, it's insane.

I had nothing to do with it.

[suspenseful music]

♪ ♪

Elfont has an answer
for everything.

I need Jocelyn to refute the
false narrative he's created.

If you can't get
her to cooperate...

There's a good chance he skates.

Where are you with
Jocelyn's trial?

It's winding down.

Are you going to
get a conviction?

I believe I am.

Not exactly cause for despair.

Let's not forget
she's responsible

for Ava Newhall's death.

Elfont was behind it all.

He met her when
she was a teenager.

He groomed her for sex.

He manipulated her
into doing his bidding.

All you can do is
offer her a fair deal.

The rest is up to her.

You're not her lawyer.

I must say, I was pleased

to receive your call last night.

Well, I was glad too.

Jocelyn and I have
done a lot of talking,

and she does see the importance
of protecting herself here.

That true?

You willing to
testify against him?

Yes. Absolutely.

I want him to pay for what
he did to those girls.

And for what he did to me.

[pensive music]

I'm not a bad
person, Mr. Price.

I swear.

I just...

I lost my way.

Those things you said about
manifesting your future,

you're doing that...
Right here, right now.

So good for you.

♪ ♪


Good news.

Jocelyn's lawyer managed
to talk sense into her.

She has agreed to cooperate.

It's too late.

- What do you mean?
- Elfont is dead.

He's dead?

Lodestar mouthed off
to the wrong guy.

Someone beat him to death in
his cell about an hour ago.

You're prepared to
do your closing?

What, you want me to pull
Jocelyn's plea offer?

We don't need her
testimony anymore.

That doesn't change the fact
that she's still a victim.

She was a victim.

At some point, she
became a victimizer.

She recruited dozens
of unsuspecting women,

took their money, groomed
them for sex with this guy.

None of this would have
happened without Elfont.

She killed someone. She's
gotta answer to that.

Would we be having
this conversation

if Jocelyn was a man?

♪ ♪

- I thought we had a deal.
- Circumstances changed.

But she was willing
to cooperate.

It's not her fault
that Elfont is dead.

We made her a fair offer.

She waited too long to accept.

You yourself admitted
that she was a victim.

You pleaded with me to
get her to cooperate.

Can we at least come to
some kind of a compromise?

We both know she doesn't deserve

to spend the rest of
her life in prison.

I understand both parties
have reached an agreement.

My client would like to
change her plea to guilty.

Is that true, Ms. Davis?


I just wanna say to
the Newhall family,

I'm so sorry.

I really liked Ava.

I wish I had never gotten
involved in Lodestar,

that I'd never met Zach.

I used to think I was
lucky to know him,

to be in his orbit,

but he used me.

He used all of us.

♪ ♪

Thank you, Ms. Davis.

I'll accept your plea as
knowing and voluntary.

Do the people move
for sentencing?

- We do.
- What's your recommendation?

We have an agreed-upon

of 12 years in state prison.

The court hereby sentences you

to serve 12 years in
the state penitentiary.

[gavel bangs]

We're adjourned.

♪ ♪

12 years.

If we give a free
pass to everyone

who's ever been victimized,

we'll have to open
the prison gates.

♪ ♪

[dramatic music]

♪ ♪

[wolf howls]