Blinking Red Light - Recap
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A young girl, Molly Meyer, perhaps teenaged, is found in a park with her throat slit and rocks placed on her eyes. Police determined that she is the fifth victim of the purported San Joaquin Killer, aka SJK.
Agents Jane and Lisbon are discussing some past serial killers whose photos have been pinned up on a cork board in the CBI headquarters. Being familiar with the killers' motivations for what
they do best, Jane tells Lisbon to take a closer look at the photos, asking her to use her gut instincts to pick out the one she thinks is doing the murders. Lisbon guesses that one Richard Haibach
might be the perpetrator.
Lisbon and Van Pelt are dispatched to Haibach's house where he lives alone. He is a known photographer with a taste for the odd. Lisbon instructs Van Pelt to wait in the cruiser while she
knocks on Haibach's door. He greets her very hostilely, telling her to leave him alone, saying in an exasperated tone, "Why can't you people just leave me alone? I've already answered all
your questions!" Lisbon tries again to question him but he nearly slams the door in her face when she asks his permission to search his house. He adamantly refuses her request and then does slam the door
abruptly, leaving her standing on the porch. Back at the car, she tells Van Pelt that they will have to get a search warrant to find evidence. Lisbon phones Rigsby to find out about the other suspects but nothing turns up because the other would-be perps had solid alibis. The women head back to headquarters.
Across town, television reporter Karen Cross, an old acquaintance of Jane's is preparing to interview one Agent Wainwright and a man named James Panzer who has made it his business to delve into
the minds of serial killers. Karen sees Jane buying a hotdog at a nearby stand and walks over to chat with him. She asks him if he knows anything about SJK, but he doesn't say much about the case. She asks
if she can interview him on the spot, but he demurs. Not discouraged, she says, maybe later and Jane nods. Turning on her heel, she proceeds to the two agents and interviews them on camera. Jane ambles
off to enjoy his hand-held meal.
Agent Cho phones Lisbon to tell her that he and Rigsby are tailing Haibach in their car as he leaves his home and finds suspicious circumstances. Lisbon says she is drawing up a search warrant.
Jane sits down with Panzer and discusses the latest SJK killing, and Panzer's research on the serial killer. Panzer seems obsessed with SJK which stirs suspicion in Jane's alert mind. As Panzer rhapsodizes on
how cunning SJK must be not to be caught yet, Jane begins to watch the man very carefully. The expression on Jane's face should give it way to Panzer but the man is lost in his rantings. Despite that, Jane
asks Panzer for his insight and help with the case to which Panzer agrees.
Lisbon and Van Pelt, search warrant in hand, invade Haibach's house amidst the man's loud protestations. Van Pelt searches the house while Lisbon stands guard over Haibach, soon noticing that he
seems to be trying to burn something in the fireplace behind him. She tells him to move, which he reluctantly does with tears in his eyes and profound frustration on his face. As she kneels to try to
retrieve the objects, she hears Van Pelt's shrill call in the darkroom, telling her that Van Pelt has found numerous photos of young girls in compromising positions. The agents tale Haibach into headquarters and question him, telling him he is being held as the SJK killer. Jane feels pretty sure that Haibach is not the killer, but will use him to draw out the real killer. Jane asks Panzer to introduce him to the latest victim's family which he does the next day. He asks to be shown the girl's bedroom, which the father does. Mr. Meyer plays a CD of Molly dancing to It's a Wonderful World sung by Louis Armstrong. Jane later plays the same tune in Panzer's hearing, who acts annoyed, further raising Jane's suspicions. Jane gets a call telling him another body has been found. Panzer says that the killer has struck again! Later, Haibach's lawyer tells Jane they have no evidence against his client, threatens to sue the CBI for harrassment.
That night, Jane and Lisbon follow Panzer out to an abandoned warehouse where they run into Karen Cross and her camera crew who are preparing to interview Panzer on air. Karen pipes up that she got a text from a blocked number, asking her to meet with SJK at that time, that night. Jane tells her to leave, taking
her crew with her. She protests but obeys. Panzer acts very offended, and leaves. Jane wants to catch Panzer in the act.
The next day, Karen Cross is busily interviewing Panzer on air about SJK who gushes about how smar the killer must be to get away with ten or more murders so far. During a break, Jane appears on the show and talks with Panzer about the murderer, saying he must be a very dull person, a sad virgin with no life and so on. Panzer becomes agitated, angry and sputters. Karen saves the day by asking Jane if CBI knows who the killer is. He says they have their suspicions but he can't release any information right yet. He intones that the killer will be caught very soon which upsets Panzer still further.
That night, Jane gets a phone call that tells him to meet the agents at the same warehouse. He sees the agents standing around outside the building and asks what is going on. Lisbon tells him to go
see inside for himself, which he does. He finds a very dead Panzer, blood running down his chest from a self inflicted wound and a Red John happy face on the wall nearby. No more SJK.