Season Four, Episode Twenty, Atonement
Original Air Date: November 17, 2010
Andrew Hope is found dead in a small, sparsely furnished house behind a church. Andrew was a good Samaritan that helped those in need and was loved by everyone he came in contact with. The case takes a twist when they learn that Andrew Hope isn't the good man everyone thought he was. Meanwhile, Stanley Wolfe has trouble of his own when his daughter hits a parked car, doesn't leave a note then tries to cover the accident up.
Hope was taped to a chair and shot four times some twenty-four hours previous. He was looking at his killer when the fatal shot to his forehead was fired as powder burns were found in his eyes. Allie and Rhys are on scene and find no personal information for Hope on scene just one change of clothes and his Bible. Matt arrives and is briefed on the case and is going to have forensics run his prints for a positive identification while Allie and Rhys consult missing persons.
Rhys and Allie interview Andrew Hope's boss from the shelter where he worked six shifts a week but refused a full-time job as he didn't want to be paid for helping those in need. She knew of no family or friends and no one at the shelter had taken a dislike to him. He was so well-liked that a wealthy local businessman, Schaendorf, had written him into his will and was planning to leave Andrew his house for all the help Andrew had given him when he had taken ill.
Schaendorf's daughter, Heidi, who is already re-decorating her father's home, had only met Andrew once but she was worried he was taking advantage of her father. According to her, her father wanted Andrew to have his house and $10,000 which will now most likely revert to her upon her fathers passing. Allie and Rhys speak with Schaendorf themselves and he doesn't exactly paint a flattering picture of his daughter and cannot vouch for her alibi at the time of the murder.
According to pathology, Andrew Hope was beaten up five days before his murder by someone who knew how to work someone over without it showing. Nick found someone at the shelter with priors, Samuel Brian Spears. Spears, who has an injured wrist, denies beating Hope as he was drinking at the time of the beating (he hurt his wrist then, as well). Hope had told him about having been beaten. Spears claimed to have been at home alone at the time of the murder. Allie wants to rule Spears out because she doesn't feel he has a proper motive for killing Andrew.
Nick finds that Andrew Hope isn't who they thought he was. He was actually Andrew Wade Rigg. He had served 19 of the 20 years he was sentenced to for aggravated burglary, rape and murder. On 3rd September, 1990, Rigg and his accomplice, Martin Sanderson, broke into the home of the Chisholm family. They tied up the mum and her two daughters and ransacked the home. While Rigg was stealing whatever he could find in the home, Sanderson was sexually assaulting 14-year-old Liz Chisholm. Shirley Chisholm broke free while Liz was being raped and almost killed Sanderson with her bare hands. A panicked Rigg shot her and left the girls there to watch their mum die. Liz Chisholm has a long list of drug and alcohol offenses with no fixed address and threatened to kill Rigg when he was released from prison. Her younger sister Megan has coped better and has a stable family life.
A constable brings Stanley's daughter Stephanie in to the office. She was driving home from uni one night when she hit a parked car while talking on her mobile. She was going to leave a note but since it was a quiet street, she left without doing so. Someone saw her and left a note with her registration information under the wiper of the hit car and the owner called the police. Because Stephanie's driving points have tanked, her friend Miranda who was at Stephanie's when the police came round said she was the one who was driving as she had plenty of points to spare. However, the investigation proved that Miranda was elsewhere at the time of the accident and Stephanie is going to be charged. Stephanie wants her father to use his position to help her out of trouble but he will not do it. She accuses him of putting the job first always and leaves his office.
Rhys and Allie pay a visit to Megan Walsh and her husband Tristan about Rigg's murder. Tristan Walsh was at work at the time of the murder and gives Rhys contact information to prove it. Megan was in Sydney for the day for a seminar. She doesn't know where her sister is. Megan Walsh is living surprisingly well with what she endured twenty years ago.At the progress meeting Megan and Tristan Walsh are eliminated as suspects as their alibis hold up. Sanderson is the next likely suspect as Rigg told the police everything about the burglary and rape when he was arrested. Duncan is still trying to track Sanderson down as he hasn't been in contact with his parole officer for two months and his whereabouts are unknown. Matt has been doing some checking on phone records and found that Heidi Schaendorf and Samuel Spears have been in frequent phone contact with one another and he wants to know why.
Allie and Nick bring Heidi in for questioning but she seems to not be very bothered by the phone records that she and Spears had been in contact with one another. Spears tells Duncan and Rhys that he and Heidi met at the shelter when she came by to check Andrew Hope out. Hope wasn't there and Spears offered to take Heidi out for a drink to tell her about him. Heidi admits to Allie and Nick that she and Spears went out for coffee once. She claims the only offer Spears made her was to find out if Andrew Hope's interest in her father was above board and phoned her incessantly with updates. Rhys brings Allie the news that Spears claimed Heidi had sex with him in return for him beating up Hope. Under threat of searching her home for a gun she admits she did give Spears money but did not have sex with him. She asked him to put pressure on Andrew but just to scare him but she denies that she killed Hope.
When Martin Sanderson was sighted at a motel in Williamstown, the team, including Jarvis, head to the motel to take him into custody. Sanderson opens the door and punches Allie in the face but is taken into custody by the other detectives.
Stanley has coffee with Senior Constable Bremner, the constable in charge of his daughter's case. Stanley has spoken with the owner of the vehicle she hit and the man is willing to let the charges drop as long as his costs are covered, which Stanley is prepared to initially do. Stanley doesn't want him to overlook that Stephanie lied to the police he just wants him to understand the situation. He tells Stanley to "leave it with me" then leaves.
Sanderson claims to know nothing about Riggs' murder. He says he hit Allie because he thought she was Liz Chisholm as she has been following him since he got out of prison. He says she is constantly leaving notes smeared with blood under his front door. Sanderson feels no remorse for anything he's done in his life and he confesses to them that he has already had his revenge on Riggs. He had some mates in prison pay Riggs a visit during his incarceration. According to Sanderson, Riggs told him to keep all the money from the Chisholm job.
A bloody note was found in the rubbish at Sanderson's home. As they are discussing the suspects left in the case, Tristan Walsh enters the office and tells them where to find Liz but asks that they don't say anything to Megan about him being there.
Liz Chisholm is glad Riggs is dead and she doesn't have an alibi for the time of the murder. She claims she doesn't even know where she is now. She accuses Allie of kicking her under the table twice and goes wild throwing water on Allie and screaming about wanting to leave. Matt texts Rhys to end the interview and Stanley orders Liz put in the cells overnight and that she be fed and get some sleep.
Bernice pays a late visit to Stanley's office about his meeting with S.C. Bremner. Bremner is preparing a report that Stanley tried to coerce him into dropping the charges against Stephanie. Bernice calls Bremner in to discuss his report and he stands behind it saying that "members who use their position for personal gain shouldn't be members at all", something Bernice agrees with. She warns him that junior officers who try to use a senior officer to jump start their career often have the tables turned on them and things don't go as they plan. She gives him his report back and he now has the freedom to lodge it if he sees fit.
Matt informs Allie that he wants someone else to join Rhys in the interview of Liz Chisholm that day. Duncan calls Matt with the information that Megan Walsh lied about going to Sydney and had a colleague attend the seminar in her place. They head to the Walsh house with a search warrant. Nick finds a locked box that Tristan had never seen before. Megan unlocks the box and they find it contains newspaper clippings and childhood drawings relating to what happened to her family twenty years ago.
Megan is taken in for questioning where she admits that she didn't go to Sydney. Instead, she had an abortion despite the fact she and Tristan had been trying to have a child. She couldn't bring a baby into the world after what had happened to her mum and sister. When Megan is cleared as a suspect, Matt orders Allie and Duncan to question Liz. He is putting Allie back in the interview because he needs someone that can push Liz's buttons.
Liz knew where to find Riggs but she denies killing him. She had seen him two weeks previously at the shelter. She followed him home that night and wanted to hurt him but she didn't. Rhys pulls Allie out of the interview to tell her he checked on Megan's alibi again and the nurse at the clinic said she checked on Megan in her recovery room an hour after the procedure and the room was empty. She had a full hour where no one at the clinic could say for certain where she was. Rhys didn't bring her in because she didn't go home. They ask Liz if she had told Megan about Riggs' whereabouts and they tell her about the abortion. Liz is surprised at the news and gives them the name of a place where they used to meet. Allie and Rhys take Liz to the location and they see that Megan is standing on the roof of a nearby building. Allie goes onto the roof to talk with Megan. Despite everything Allie tells her about how things can be worked out Megan jumps.
Stephanie pays a visit to Stanley's office and thanks him for whatever he did to make things good for her as S.C. Bremner is going to let the charges drop as long as she pays for the damage to the car.
Allie tells Rhys she wants to pull some strings to get Liz Chisholm into a program and find a place for her to live. She's realized that being strong isn't enough. When she starts to cry, Rhys is there to comfort her.
Allie has been the focus, or rather, a major character, in a lot of the shows this season. I know she isn't a fan favorite but I've always liked her. We've seen a good bit of detail this season about what makes Allie Kingston tick and she's a complicated character. I love the relationship she and Rhys have built up. They are both newbies to the team (Rhys more so than Allie) and they are kind of kindred spirits as they both do their own thing. I was really thinking we might see a little romance between her and Rhys but with just one more show to go, unless it happens next week, it won't be happening at all.
Sneaky Bernice! I loved her chat with S.C. Bremner. She handled the matter perfectly. She knew that trying to set the record straight wouldn't achieve the desired result so she used a bit of reverse psychology instead. And speaking of the Stanley/Stephanie situation, is it just me or is Stephanie a bit spoiled? She accuses her father of always putting the job first when he tells her he can't help her and then when things go her way she tells him she loves him and thanks him and asks to borrow $600 to boot!
Next Wednesday is the season finale of City Homicide. One of the squad will be leaving forever. Who will it be? My guess is that it will be either Jennifer or Nick. It's a can't-miss show!
For more information:
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