'NCIS: New Orleans' Season 6 Episode 3 highlights Dwayne Pride's brilliance, reminding us why he is the best TV agent
The episode sees Pride dig up his past, particularly the unsolved case of Ashley Griffin as new evidence resurfaces and suddenly his ethics come under questioning.
This article contains spoilers for season 6, episode 3.
NCIS: New Orleans' season 6, episode 3 saw Agent Dwayne Pride dig up his past and relive not so fond memories as the case of Ashley Griffin emerged once again. The official CBS synopsis for the episode reveals that “Pride travels to New York City after new DNA evidence links to a 20-year-old cold case from his time at the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s office.”
And while we see that happening, what is even more terrifying is how the loose ends get tied, to offer closure as the episode culminates.
The Ashley Griffin case involves the mysterious disappearance of a young girl before her body is found next to the baseball bat she was murdered with. The entire scene was grisly enough for Pride to still vividly remember it, and with newer evidence resurfacing, he decides to take a shot at the case again.
One of their prime suspects back in the day was a man called Elliot Whitman, who allegedly possesses 'trophies' he collected from his victims. When Whitman's neighbor's house catches fire, the fire department uses his air vent to douse the blaze, and there within the depths of the vent, they find a mysterious box with several items including Ashley's panties, which still contains her DNA on them.
Back in the day, when the actual investigation was on, Pride, who was working with the Sheriff, ended up falling in a tough pit due to the Sheriff's overzealous attitude around Whitman, which had spurred his family to threaten to sue them. The whole reason why Whitman was a prime suspect, was because of his suspicious behavior at the time of the investigation; witnesses claimed they saw Whitman follow Ashley the day she went missing, and since there was no other evidence linking him to the murder, he was allowed to walk out a free man.
However, with the box of trophies coming into the light, Whitman - in the present time - ends up being the prime suspect of possibly three other murders. His shady habits of moving a lot and taking random 'vacations' every once in a while didn't exactly help his cause either. But he pulled a fine act of being so traumatized by the first round of investigation from the past, that he had a screaming outburst the moment he saw Pride, thus leading NYPD Detective David Cabrera to ask Pride to sit this one out.
Cabrera came around once he noticed Pride's rank and the fact that he also had a very pretty daughter, and as the two partnered together in the case, they found out about the other victims whose belongings were in the box.
Not only that, they matched the MO of the murders of the others with that of Ashley's and linked them back to Whitman. The only problem now was that Whitman happened to have an alibi for the rest of them. This is where Whitman's reputation as a loner came into play; suspecting he had a partner in his crime, literally, the police dug up Whitman's past to find out the only friend he had ever made in high school - Parker Lacey - a mentor of sorts to Whitman.
Digging further, the authorities found a correlation between the missing women: those that Whitman had murdered, had wronged Lacey sometimes in the past. And for those that Whitman had an alibi for, aka the ones likely murdered by Lacey, were all women whose families had wronged Whitman in the past. Things were still looking pretty bleak, but trust Pride's brilliance and expertise as a crime-solving pro to tie the loose ends towards the end of the episode.
When the cops seek out Lacey, they find he has been hiding in tunnels, owing to his resources at the energy department. In the chase, Lacey rushes out of the tunnel's end and gets fatally hit by a truck the moment he comes out, thus leaving Pride with no confession to take Whitman in. But when Pride meets Whitman, he lies and tells him that Lacey confessed it all.
Conveniently keeping the fact that Lacey had died a secret, Pride tells Whitman how Lacey had so much to live for and claimed that Whitman threatened to harm his family if he didn't participate in his sick murders. As expected, the sick deviant can't deal with this and in an outburst, under Pride's crafty manipulation, he spills it all. And while Pride's ethics can be brought into question here, there's no denying, he is one hell of a detective.
'NCIS: New Orleans' season 6 airs on Tuesdays at 10 pm only on CBS.