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Recap / Law And Order S 18 E 2 Darkness

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Lupo's transfer is finalized, and he and Green are officially partners. The wife and daughter of wealthy CEO John Conlan are kidnapped during a city-wide blackout, and their maid is murdered. A kidnapper soon calls in a ransom demand but the suspect, Nick Costas, is killed in an accident before he can be arrested. Cutter orders Lupo and Green to search a store owned by Costas' family, even though they cannot get a search warrant. Inside the store, the detectives find Mrs. Conlan dead but her daughter Katie alive. Lupo arrests Costas' cousin Roy Barkin, who was also inside the building. However, Barkin is unable to identify another accomplice Costas had hired.

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Evidence that the kidnappers knew the blackout was due leads to the discovery that two power companies have been colluding to drive up prices by periodically withdrawing supply. One of these companies is owned by Mr. Conlan, and the unidentified appliance must be connected to him. Cutter and Rubirosa track down a Marty Dressler, who had been spying on Conlan by hacking into his computer. Because of the issue with the search warrant, Cutter needs Conlan's testimony; but Conlan refuses to implicate himself for fraud. Cutter gets the case dismissed and the defendants released, then tells Katie that they are going free because her father won't testify. Conlan agrees to give testimony and the trial proceeds.

This episode contains examples of:

  • Double-Meaning Title
  • Ethnic Menial Labor: The Conlans' maid.
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  • No Ending: The outcome of the trial isn't shown.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: Based on the scandal surrounding Enron using blackouts to manipulate energy prices.
  • Scatterbrained Senior: Mr. Costas has Alzheimer's Disease, and his obviously unreliable testimony means that a judge won't grant a search warrant for the store.
  • Technophobia: Rubirosa says McCoy's still using an old typewriter because he doesn't trust computers.
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