Conspiracy Theory is the nineteenth episode in Season Two as well as the 42nd episode of the entire NCIS series.
The NCIS team investigate when a young Petty Officer informs the local authorities that she was attacked by someone wearing battle fatigues and body armor but the Petty Officer's therapist strongly disagrees, instead believing that the woman is suffering from paranoid delusions that were triggered by the death of her fiancee in Iraq the previous month. Unfortunately, the woman is later found dead in her room, having apparently committed suicide by hanging herself with her bed-sheets but Ducky soon discovers that she was actually murdered, sending the team on a quest to find out who was not only responsible for the woman's death and for also triggering her supposed breakdown but who was having an affair with one of the personnel at the hospital....
The scene opens with Petty Officer Jessica Smith lying in her room, asleep.
However, a man's voice calling her name echoes into the bedroom and she wakes up, glancing around the room in fright.
The voice continues taunting Jessica, telling her that her fiance is dead and that they're going to get her.
The quilt on Jessica's bed is pulled off and she begins freaking out.
It then shows someone wearing a military-style uniform and they're wielding a flashlight along with a knife.
It then cuts to Jessica who begins screaming rather hysterically.
It's early morning in the office and as the work day begins, Anthony DiNozzo is doing sit-up exercises when his colleagues, Caitlin Todd and Timothy McGee come in. DiNozzo, having obviously only just started pretends he's finished just as Kate and McGee arrive in and begin questioning him.
Tony defends himself by claiming he's not doing push-ups because of a girl although Kate and McGee beg to differ.
When McGee tries to give DiNozzo his favorite bacon-sausage-cheese breakfast burrito, DiNozzo passes, stating there's too much fat which confirms McGee and Kate's theory that it must have been a really young girl that rejected DiNozzo.
Abigail Sciuto arrives in, agreeing and although Tony tries to stop her from talking, she recounts how of the woman who was 5'10, had blonde hair, long legs and according to Tony, "ginormous headlights".
Tony's in disagreement about that final part although Abby claims that's what Tony called her.
Abby then tells Kate and McGee that the unnamed girl broke down by the Navy Yard the previous night and Tony helped her out.
"Oh, I bet he did", Kate says.
Abby then reveals that the woman is a junior at Georgetown with Kate wondering if the girl's actually twenty.
McGee believes that she might be younger given how he was eighteen when he was a junior at MIT.
Tony states that when they need clarification, they'll ask McGee.
As McGee gives Abby her Caf-Pow, Kate wants to know how old the woman is.
Abby, taking the Caf-Pow tells them that the woman was old enough to turn Tony down, stating that she only goes with guys who are in their twenties.
Kate sarcastically sympathies with Tony who states that the woman wasn't his type anyway.
Kate, on the other hand decides to mock Tony by stating that it's a good thing he got turned and in a stage whisper, tells him that the "Sex Machine" should hang his spurs up just as Leroy Jethro Gibbs comes into the office, armed with his usual cup of coffee.
Tony wants to know how she knows about that. Kate tells him that dating his frat brother had his advantages.
Gibbs heads into the bullpen and tells the team to grab their gear as they're going to go to Georgetown to investigate a Petty Officer who was seemingly assaulted in her home the previous night and tells "Sex Machine" aka Tony that he's driving before tossing the keys to Tony who catches them.
While this goes on, Abby and Kate smirk, amused.
But Tony's extremely pissed off and as they prepare to leave, sends Kate an email, telling her she should check it as it's kind of important.
Kate rolls her eyes and goes to check her email, only to find that the email has a photo of her winning the Wet T-Shirt Competition in 1994.
Kate's stunned, demanding to know where Tony got it. He tells her that he saw it when he was in Panama City the previous month.
Kate is left dumbstruck.
Tony then states that he was going to keep it himself but then she told everyone his pledge name.
Realizing her career might be in jeopardy if this gets out, Kate closes the email and tries to be nice to Tony who unsurprisingly is having none of it.
Once they've gotten inside, the lift doors close on Tony who's acting all innocent, Kate who looks worried and McGee who's just looking back and forth, puzzled.
The team arrive at the scene where they meet Alex Taylor who tells them what he knows along with his belief that the attack didn't even happen.
Inside, Petty Officer Jessica Smith is in a state and tries to talk to Gibbs and Kate while music plays in the background courtesy of the radio. This is because she's worried that whoever's listening to her might hear what's going on.
Unfortunately, the interview is interrupted by Commander Allan Witten with DiNozzo informing Gibbs that the Commander refused to wait outside.
Gibbs then orders the Commander outside while Kate tries to comfort Jessica who tells her that she can't go back there.
In the hall, Witten reveals that Smith has been diagnosed with brief reactive psychosis which he believes was triggered by the death of Smith's fiancé in Iraq the previous month.
Gibbs wants to know why Smith isn't in the hospital with Witten explaining as Smith's condition improved, they released her.
When DiNozzo informs Witten about a man who was supposedly in Smith's bedroom wearing camouflage, body armor and who was also wielding a knife, Witten plays the claim down, stating that it was just a delusion and tries to assures the Agents that no crime was committed.
"Why don't you let me decide that?", Gibbs asks.
Back in the truck, Kate tries to apologize to Tony but he's having none of it and instead thinking of using the Wet T-Shirt picture as a poster.
Kate snaps, telling him that it'll be war or rather Hell on Earth if that happens.
When McGee tries to find out what's going on, they tell him that it's none of his business before Gibbs joins them.
Sliding into the driver's seat, Gibbs wonders if Smith said anything while Gibbs was talking to her shrink, Commander Witten. Kate says no and that the only thing Smith said was to call her C.O and let him know that the monsters were after her again. It then shows Witten dragging Smith to his car.
As this goes on, Kate says that judging from appearance, it looks like Smith has had a relapse with Gibbs remarking that his first two marriages were based on appearances and he then tells her to pull Petty Officer Smith's records when they get back to the office.
As the van heads off back to NCIS, the sound of something or someone, probably McGee falling over in the truck is heard.
Back at the office, Kate reveals that Smith is a Navy Achievement winner and a Sailor of the Quarter three times before remarking that Smith is an outstanding sailor.
Tony then remarks that a lot of overachievers and perfectionists lose it. He then tells them about his second uncle who was a successful businessman until he was found at a golf course digging up holes, looking for mole people before asking Kate if she's a perfectionist.
Kate's stunned and McGee then reveals that before Smith's breakdown, she worked at the Department of Acquisitions at the Pentagon.
Gibbs wants to know about her C.O. Tony reveals that it's a Captain Ross Vetter and that there's an open case file on him.
As it turns out, the file doesn't belong to NCIS.
It's the FBI who opened it about a month before Smith had her psychotic break.
Gibbs wants to know what they're investigating Vetter for but Tony tells him that he doesn't know because NCIS isn't being read into the investigation.
While Tony winces, Gibbs calls on McGee who tells him he's going to start working on getting access to the file right away.
Gibbs tells Tony and Kate to roll.
When Tony asks where to, Gibbs tells him that they're going to ask Petty Officer some questions about monsters and with that, they depart the bullpen while McGee continues working.
At the hospital, Catherine Reynolds, a patient greets them, telling Witten will see them shortly.
William the Truthteller emerges and tells them he can tell everything he knows about the place but thankfully, Catherine sends him back to his group before pointing out that Witten is approaching.
Gibbs and Kate head out to talk to Commander Witten while Catherine begins flirting with Tony. Thankfully, her flirting ends when Corpsman Timothy Morgan drags her back to the group, revealing that she is a patient too.
Down at Smith's room, Witten shows Gibbs and Kate that Smith has been sedated and is sleeping rather peacefully.
Gibbs wants to talk to Smith when she wakes up but Witten shoots the request down, stating that Smith's paranoid of authority figures although Gibbs states that judging by the state of things, it looks like Smith's only paranoid of Witter.
Gibbs gets up Witten's nose by telling them they'll talk again in the morning before Gibbs and Kate depart.
The three then arrive back at the office where McGee reveals that the FBI is stonewalling them, claiming that the case against Vetter is classified. Tony then gets in McGee's face by stating that the last time he checked, NCIS had clearances.
McGee tells Tony that while the FBI are not releasing the info, McGee called the Pentagon and spoke with the admiral in charge of Vetter's office.
As a photo of Vetter pops up on the plasma, McGee reveals that the FBI believe that Vetter was taking kickbacks in exchange for government contracts and as a result, Vetter's on leave pending the outcome of the investigation.
Gibbs wants to know about Petty Officer Smith.
McGee tells him that Smith along with everyone else in Vetter's group was questioned.
Kate believes that if Smith was found mentally ill, then she would be excused from testifying against Vetter.
Tony remarks that it didn't look like Smith was faking it to him with Kate remarking, "Something tells me you say that a lot".
When DiNozzo tries to piss Kate off, Gibbs tells him that if he does that, then Gibbs is going to put his boot so far up DiNozzo's ass, only to get interrupted by the sound of his cell-phone ringing which he answers while Kate's obviously having a good chuckle.
The person calling Gibbs is none other than Petty Officer Smith and she's frantic, telling Gibbs they need to talk before hanging up.
Gibbs leaves the bullpen, choosing Kate to go with him and they eventually reach the hospital, confronting Corpsman Morgan who's rather unwilling to do that at first but finally does it after an enraged Gibbs threatens to break the door down.
Morgan quickly opens the door and everyone gets a shock when they see Petty Officer Smith dangling from the end of her bed, having committed suicide by hanging herself with her sheets.
It then cuts to Gibbs and Kate, both of whom look devastated at the scene.
Petty Officer Smith's bedroom is being processed and as she lies in the body bag, ready to be transported back to NCIS, Gibbs orders McGee to find who else Smith called while ordering the younger Agent to check her speed-dial and phone book.
As McGee does that, NCIS's Medical Examiner Donald Mallard studies the body and tells Gibbs that Smith should have been observed 24 hours a day and that Smith being left alone all night is negligent at best.
Witten then studies the scene and is left horrified before asking if she let a note.
Gibbs tells him that Smith didn't and if she had, what would she have written?
"I don't know", Witten admits and leaves.
Ducky gets to his feet upon realizing that Witten is the one responsible for overseeing Petty Officer Smith and leaves to give him a peace of his mind with Gibbs ordering Ducky to go easy.
In the corridor, Ducky confronts Witten who defends himself, stating that Smith like the seven others were all considered non-suicide risks.
"I'm sure the family will take great solace from that", Ducky grimly replies.
The shouting match ends rather abruptly and James Palmer emerges, telling Ducky that Smith is ready for transport. Ducky then heads inside and tells Palmer to get her back to NCIS.
On in the main hall, Reynolds emerges, wanting to know what's going on while William tells that Jessica's dead, having committed suicide.
Catherine then asks Witten if it's true to which he confirms rather sadly.
As this happens, Ducky wheeling the body bag containing Smith's body walks past with Jimmy following while Tony hangs back to talk to Catherine.
Witten then orders Corpsman Morgan to get everyone into the day room which Morgan agrees to and while this goes on, Tony talks to Catherine who unsurprisingly begins flirting with him again.
Gibbs thankfully breaks up the flirting as he and Kate head for the main office. Tony quickly recovers and then uses the opportunity to race after them, leaving Catherine staring at him.
In the office, Corpsman Morgan is being interviewed and that the last time he checked on Petty Officer Smith was around 19:30. He noted that she was sedated and sleeping peacefully.
Tony and Kate want to know if Smith was sedated, then how did she manage to call them and then hang herself?
Morgan then states that he's seen patients kill themselves by stuffing their noses and throats with toilet paper and remarks that if they want to do it, they'll find a way.
"Or they're helped", Gibbs remarks before asking who regarded Smith as a non-suicide risk. Morgan reveals that it was Commander Witten and with that, Gibbs ends the interview, allowing Morgan to leave and resume his duties.
McGee arrives in with the announcement that he's finished processing the scene and then asks Gibbs if he can tape off the room.
Gibbs tells he can before stating that he wants everything on Witten including the contact that the Commander's had with Smith.
McGee's puzzled at first but one glare from Gibbs has him realizing it's all right.
Once Gibbs has left, McGee wonders about doctor-patient confidentiality with Tony who's on his PDA stating that it doesn't exist in the military anymore and sadly for some, it doesn't exist between NCIS teammates either.
As he says this, he shows Kate a photo of her Wet T-Shirt contest.
Kate tries to act all cool by telling Tony that he's wasting his time and that it doesn't bother her anymore.
Tony blows it out of the water by asking McGee if he wants to see something hot but Kate stops him from showing McGee the photo while also wondering what it's going to cost her. Tony wonders if she still has that Catholic schoolgirl uniform which has Kate annoyed.
In the office, as Tony arrives in for work, he gets a shock when he sees FBI Agent Tobias Fornell at Gibbs's desk.
Fornell tells DiNozzo that he got better despite having seemingly committed suicide in The Bone Yard (episode) before telling the other man that he's just checking his email and that Gibbs won't mind.
Tony then grills McGee for information with McGee telling Tony that Fornell's been there ever since McGee got in this morning.
A few minutes, Kate arrives in and wonders about Fornell being dead with Tony stating that the thing is apparently, Fornell got better.
Unfortunately, Tony and Kate's belief that Gibbs will lose it upon seeing Fornell sitting at his desk is shattered when Gibbs wanders in, asking Fornell if he's comfortable.
As it turns out, Fornell has come to talk to Gibbs about something and as Fornell leaves for their usual conference room (the lift), Gibbs tells McGee to make sure that Fornell didn't put any of that virus goat rope crap on his computer which has McGee confused.
Kate and Tony then mention that McGee's a FUBAR which leaves the younger Agent either confused or annoyed.
In the lift, Gibbs demands to know why the FBI is investigating a Navy Captain without even telling NCIS. Fornell mockingly remembers that NCIS "always" informs the FBI when one of their cases heads into FBI jurisdiction.
Fornell tells Gibbs that the FBI are looking into Vetter taking cutbacks and also reveals that his FBI superiors want Gibbs to back off with Fornell knowingly telling them that it was useless to get Gibbs to do that.
Gibbs wants to know about Vetter but Fornell tells him that he doesn't know and that he's just the messenger.
Fornell then tells Gibbs he'll see what he can find out but Gibbs stops him by telling Fornell that he owns him.
Fornell's stunned by that and is left further shocked when Gibbs reveals that Petty Officer Smith is dead, having committed suicide.
Gibbs finally gets what he wants and promises not to jeopardize the FBI investigation into Captain Vetter although Fornell believes otherwise.
A while later, Gibbs and McGee head to the Vetter household where they talk to Captain Vetter who tells them he's being targeted, all because he tried to change the system and because of that, his family is suffering for it so much so that Vetter has even resorted to drinking to help him cope.
During the talk, Gibbs and McGee break the news of Petty Officer Smith's death to him which has Vetter stunned. Audrey Vetter, the Captain's wife emerges, treating the NCIS agents with hostility as she's tired of answering questions and as such, has refused to answer any.
Gibbs and McGee take heed and then depart.
Back in the morgue, Ducky's finishing his autopsy findings and tells Gibbs that he's found that Petty Officer Smith was smothered to death by having a pillow pressed over her face which killed her instantly and then her body was hung to make it appear as if she had killed herself.
"This was no suicide, Jethro", Ducky concludes gravely. "Our petty officer was murdered".
It then cuts to Smith's lifeless body lying on the table.
In the Evidence Garage, while waiting for Gibbs and Abby, Tony and Kate study the blow-up doll on the bed which is also wearing Abby's clothing.
To pass the time, they have a little talk about Kate's Spring Break photo which Tony shows Kate. The topic changes when Gibbs and Abby arrive down.
Abby then reveals that when Petty Officer Smith was given 15mg of Trazodone when Smith arrived at the mental hospital which in Abby's opinion was enough to zonk Smith out for the rest of the day.
Kate wants to know how Smith made the phone call to NCIS, asking them for help.
Abby then tells them that the effects of the drug would have start wearing off on Smith and then demonstrates by placing a pillow over the doll, suggesting that Smith was too weak to fight off whoever killed her. Tony then states there was no sign of a struggle at the scene.
Abby asks him if he's ever been on Trazodone before stating that in her condition, Smith couldn't have even fought off a ten year old.
Gibbs then realizes that the pending question is how the people responsible for Smith's death hung her body after they had killed her.
Heading over to the computer, Abby brings up a photo of the scene and asks the group what's missing. Tony realizes that there's nothing to stand.
Abby agrees and continues with her original question. Kate believes that there were two of them who hung the body but Abby believes that there's a much simpler way to the story.
While Tony, Gibbs and Kate look on, Abby wraps a piece of the bedsheet around the doll's neck before telling them that the legs of the bed act as a fulcrum. She then pushes the bed so that it is standing on the end and as the doll hangs, Abby remarks that it the bed that made it easier for one person to lift Jessica's weight.
As the revelation sinks in, Tony remarks that the sound of the bed lifting would have made some noise with Kate realizing that it would have been heard at the nurses's station.
Gibbs believes that Corpsman Morgan knows something and tells Kate that Morgan is to report to NCIS tomorrow but not to be told why.
As they leave for the lift, Tony grabs the instructions for the doll and as they head inside, Kate remarks that she saw that. Tony wonders what she saw before showing her his PDA.
Upon realizing the photo could get out, Kate lies and tells Tony that she saw nothing just as the door closes on Tony who's smiling, Kate who looks annoyed and Gibbs who looks emotionless as ever.
Later, in Gibbs's basement, Fornell arrives in and begins telling Gibbs what he's found in the FBI investigation into Captain Vetter.
Officially, Fornell couldn't find anything but unofficially, the investigation wasn't getting very so far so they decided to go for someone weaker in his office.
"His personal assistant, Petty Officer Smith", Gibbs states before asking Fornell why NCIS was shut out of it. Fornell tells him that his FBI superiors worked Smith over pretty hard and that they didn't think Gibbs would go along with it so they opted not to inform him. They also threatened Smith with jail time and even forced her to wear a wire to work.
Gibbs in disbelief remarks that Smith just lost her fiancé in Iraq.
Fornell replies that because of that, Smith was more vulnerable and much easier for the FBI agents to manipulate.
"Man, you call me a bastard", Gibbs mutters.
Fornell defends himself, stating that it's not his case and that he's just doing Gibbs a favor before stating that the FBI agents believed that Smith was hiding something.
When Gibbs ponders, Fornell states that Smith killed herself before they could find out. Gibbs then reveals that Smith did not commit suicide and that she was actually murdered.
"By whom?", Fornell asks.
"That's what you're gonna help me find out", Gibbs replies, taking a sip from his mug while Fornell looks on, stunned.
The next morning, in the squadroom, McGee and Kate are busy listening to recordings of Smith's therapy sessions with Tony demanding to know what's going on.
Unsurprisingly, when Tony demands a copy, Kate tries to stop him, only for her to change her tune and ask McGee to burn DiNozzo a copy. The three soon realize that Smith might have told someone in the ward she was in something really important. When Kate tries to get her own back, Tony stops her cold with the footage of the wet t-shirt photo, causing Kate to back down.
Corpsman Morgan arrives in the office and tells DiNozzo that he had orders to see him.
DiNozzo then reveals that the statement was not the case before revealing that Morgan's actually here to see Gibbs who is then seen descending the stairs and walking towards the bullpen much to Morgan's surprise.
In Interrogation, Gibbs is busy talking to Morgan while in Observation, as the interrogation is being recorded, Tony and Kate look on. Well, Kate is staring at the Interrogation while Tony relaxes on a chair, watching it on a TV.
In Interrogation, Gibbs wants to know how long the rounds Morgan made took. Morgan tells him that it was a few minutes.
Gibbs wants to know if Morgan saw anyone else coming in or out of the ward that night.
Morgan tells him no, he didn't and that he didn't hear anything usual until Gibbs and Kate showed up.
After writing everything down, Gibbs tells Morgan that they've got a problem. Gibbs then tells Morgan that Petty Officer Smith was murdered which leaves Morgan stunned. Gibbs then states that Morgan's the only one who could have done it. Kate who's been silently studying the talk then informs Tony that there's no way that Morgan did it.
As usual, Tony doesn't buy the story, remarking that Morgan's a good actor.
"Nobody's that good", Kate states.
Tony then produces his PDA and gets all nice while telling Kate that he intends to delete the photo. Kate is relieved but gets a very rude awakening when Tony tells her that he was acting all along which has Kate extremely pissed off yet again.
In the Interrogation Room, Morgan confesses that he lied.
Gibbs tells Morgan that he kind of figured that part out by himself. Morgan then admits that he really screwed up which Gibbs figured out too.
Morgan then admits that he left his post for 40 minutes and after a heartbeat, confesses that he's been having sex with Catherine Reynolds for three months now.
As they return to the bullpen, Gibbs tells Tony to go to the hospital and verify Morgan's alibi by talking to Mrs. Reynolds.
Tony remarks that he'll be glad too.
Gibbs then summons Kate to go with him.
As the three get ready to go, Gibbs calls for McGee, only to stop when he doesn't hear the younger Agent.
Turning around, Gibbs then realizes that McGee is at his desk, listening to another recording. This pisses Gibbs off so much so that he storms over to McGee's desk and removes the headphones.
McGee turns around and Gibbs wants to know what the Hell he's doing.
As McGee explains what he's doing, Tony pretends to go through some papers but he's actually taking an interest in Gibbs taking his own anger out on McGee.
Back at his desk, McGee reveals that Petty Officer Smith socialized with both Catherine Reynolds and Lynn Simons, that the three might have been friends and that Smith might have confined in Reynolds and Simons and told them something she didn't tell anyone else.
Gibbs tells McGee it's good thinking which has Tony stating that he came up with the idea. Gibbs cuts him off by changing the assignments.
Instead of going out, Tony is to stay and babysit Corpsman Morgan while McGee goes to talk to Catherine Reynolds.
Once Gibbs and Kate have left, Tony angrily confronts McGee and McGee replies, "Tony, a wise man once told me there's no I in team".
As McGee leaves, Tony is left annoyed.
Inside the lift, Kate wants to know where they're going with Gibbs revealing that they're going back to Smith's house as he believes that she was telling the truth about someone being in her bedroom.
A while later, wearing her NCIS coat and hat, Kate carries a briefcase and her backpack to the front door before stopping, having sensed that something isn't right.
She looks back at Gibbs and as he draws his weapon, Kate attempts to draw hers, only for Gibbs to drag her to the ground as a series of gunshots rip through the front door.
On the grass, Gibbs, having shielded Kate with his body asks her if she's alright. She assures him that she is.
"Let's get this bastard", Gibbs snarls.
As Gibbs breaks down the door, he and Kate enter the house, checking each and every spot for the mysterious shooter.
Just as they finish clearing Smith's bedroom, they hear a car engine starting from outside as well as the sound of a gun being fired.
This forces Gibbs and Kate to head back outside again where they emerge just in time to see a gold or yellow-colored car turn a corner before disappearing altogether.
Gibbs intends to go after it, only to realize that the car's tyres are flat which has Gibbs cursing.
With their plan of chasing the suspect gone, Gibbs and Kate head back into the bedroom where they begin searching for something.
Gibbs then spots a screwdriver on the ground along with a screw and realizes that it came from the air-dent.
With the two now wearing their gloves, Kate gets up onto a chair and begins removing the air-dent shield with Gibbs bagging the shield.
Shining a flashlight into the dent, Kate finds a radio which she gives to Gibbs.
Taking one look at it, Gibbs quickly realizes that it's a radio receiver and a broadcast speaker.
"I guess Jessica Smith was hearing voices", Kate states.
"Yeah and they weren't in her head", Gibbs finishes.
It then cuts to Gibbs who examines at the speaker before he glances at Kate who simply looks lost in thought.
The next morning, in the lab, Abby tells Gibbs that the parts are off the shelf but the execution is very sophisticated.
She then states that the speaker is actually the guts for a disposable cell-phone which means that all the person has to is the dial the number and the device will activate.
"Like a terrorist bomb", Gibbs replies.
Abby then tells him that instead of a bomb, they get this.
She then presses a thin metal stick against one of the buttons and a male voice calling Smith's name is heard in the lab with the voice continuing to taunt her over her dead fiancé. Gibbs is left lost for words.
The next few minutes are then spent with Abby trying to educate Gibbs on the Friday the 13th movie series with no success.
After that ends, Gibbs prepares to leave the lab after telling Abby to call him when she's gotten something. He's barely half out of the door when Abby rings him, telling him she's found something, forcing Gibbs to turn around and head back into the lab where Abby shows him that her right index finger is wrapped in a bandage. She explains that she cut it when she installed a new graphics card in her computer.
Gibbs wonders if Abby wants him to kiss it better. Abby states that it would be really nice but it's not the point she was hoping to prove. She then states that most of the metal inside anything electronics is unfinished and that she cuts herself all the time on burs and rough edges.
"Yeah, well, you ought to try building a boat with hand tools after a couple shots of Jack", Gibbs remarks.
Abby chuckles and then states that while she was snooping around the circuit board, she found some blood inside the circuit which means that whoever assembled the radio speaker managed to get themselves cut in the process and that also means that they've got the DNA.
Gibbs compliments her and kisses her finger before leaving.
"Does that feel better?", he asks.
"Much", Abby replies.
Meanwhile, McGee has finally arrived at the hospital and is getting the cold shoulder from Commander Witten who's extremely annoyed about NCIS disrupting life in the hospital.
McGee reveals that he intends to interview Catherine Reynolds and Lyn Simons.
Witten tells him that Simons was discharged from the Navy three weeks ago and that Reynolds in her home while stating that she is not to be disturbed under any circumstances whatsoever. McGee then states that it wasn't a request.
Angered, Witten rounds on McGee, demanding if McGee knows just how upsetting NCIS's presence was the other night.
McGee stands his ground, stating that he has some idea before asking Witten if the Commander has any idea of what's really going on in his ward. Witten demands to know what that statement means.
McGee then delivers the cold, hard truth by revealing that Corpsman Morgan has been sleeping with Catherine Reynolds for three months.
Witten is shocked, stating that it's impossible and that he would have known.
McGee then finishes with the news that Smith was actually murdered with Witten being left stunned by both revelations.
While Witten struggles to get to grips with this, McGee tells the Commander that it's his call.
It then cuts to Catherine Reynolds's room where the woman in question is sitting on a bed, reading a travel magazine and listening to some music.
Suddenly, a knock on the door interrupts her and as she removes her headphone, Commander Witten identifies himself before asking if she's decent.
"If I was, I wouldn't be in here, Doc", Catherine snaps. "Go away".
However, just as she's about to put on the headphones, Catherine stops upon hearing Witten tell her that she has a visitor and eagerly rushes for the door with Witten's message that it's NCIS Special Agent McGee getting lost in the wind. She opens the door and is disappointed, remarking that she thought it was the cute one- (Tony).
McGee then tells Reynolds that he just needs to ask her a few questions.
Reynolds agrees on the condition that she can ask him some of her own. Witten tells McGee that he'll be down the hall and leaves. Reynolds invites McGee and closes the door before hopping onto the bed. McGee then changes his mind by leaving the door open and remarks that he's here to talk to Reynolds about Corpsman Morgan.
As he sits on a chair opposite the bed, McGee tells Reynolds that Corpsman Morgan claims that he's been in a relationship with her and that on the night of Jessica Smith's death but McGee can't bring himself to finish the sentence. Reynolds helpfully adds, "With me. Knocking boots" before remarking that patients usually take what they can get around here- (in the hospital).
Reynolds then changes the interview by asking McGee if he's a virgin to which McGee replies, "No". Reynolds seems to be in disbelief at that and is even chuckling, asking McGee if he's sure about that.
McGee tells her that he wasn't a virgin the last time and that Reynolds asked him two questions instead of one.
Reynolds then puts her magazine aside and sits up before settling down on the bed. McGee then asks her what time she was with Morgan at. Reynolds states that it was between 7pm and 8:30pm.
McGee then asks her if she was close to Petty Officer Smith at all.
Reynolds gets a bit distant, remarking that she liked Smith and that she believed that Smith didn't belong in the hospital. She then asks McGee if he's ever been in love, a question that throws him for a loop. McGee then says that he has, sometimes and that he thinks he might have been.
Reynolds remarks that he's honest, that she likes that and it's very rare in a man. McGee then wonders if Petty Officer Smith ever told Reynolds about her problems.
Reynolds states that she did and when McGee asks about it, Reynolds sits up on the bed, informing McGee that Petty Officer Smith was having an affair with a married man.
McGee wonders if Reynolds ever got a name but Reynolds didn't.
With that, McGee concludes the interview, thanking Reynolds for her time. As he gets up, Reynolds then states that Petty Officer Smith did tell Lynn Simons who then told Reynolds herself. McGee's stunned.
Reynolds then gets up from the bed and approaches McGee before she begins playing with his tie.
While she does this, she then begins asking him if he wears boxers or tighty-whiteys. McGee tells her that it depends and that he sometimes wears both. Reynolds then asks McGee what he's wearing right now.
McGee, extremely annoyed tells her that it's boxers.
The wind having been taken out of her sails, Reynolds then states that the married man Smith was sleeping with was her C.O and then goes on to say that the guy or rather bastard never returned any of her phone calls.
As a result, Smith then asked Simons to deliver a message for her.
As Reynolds continues exploring McGee's shirt and tie, McGee looks around as if expecting Commander Witten to appear.
Back in the office, McGee informs the team about Petty Officer Lynn Simons who is an avionics and electronics tech.
He also reveals that Simons received a medical discharge three weeks ago before stating that Petty Officer Smith had asked Simons to give Captain Ross Vetter a message from Smith herself which was that Smith loved him and promised to forgive him if he would just contact her.
Kate, having finished performing a background search, informs them that Simons failed to report to her therapy session at the VA two weeks ago and that no-one's seen her since.
Gibbs then orders that Lynn Simons be found and then tasks McGee with bringing Captain Vetter to NCIS and that if the Captain refuses, then McGee should put Vetter in cuffs.
As Gibbs leaves the bullpen, Tony calls after him that Vetter and Witten both served on the USS Kennedy in 1999.
Kate isn't impressed, stating that the USS Kennedy is a big ship and that it could all be a coincidence.
As Gibbs heads upstairs while on his cell-phone, he tells Kate that he doesn't believe in coincidences with Tony mouthing the same words.
He then tells the person at the other end- (possibly, Fornell) that it's him and that they need to talk.
A while later, Captain Vetter sits in Interrogation, cuffed to the chair, suggesting that he didn't take McGee's suggestion of coming to NCIS too lightly.
Gibbs and Fornell then enter to begin a joint interrogation while in Observation, Kate and McGee look on with McGee wondering what the plan's going to be: good cop, bad cop.
"More like bad cop, scary cop, McGee", Kate replies.
McGee wonders which one's which and Kate tells him that she thinks McGee will ask Fornell and Gibbs's ex-wives that one.
In Interrogation, Vetter is extremely pissed off, demanding to know what the Hell is going on.
Fornell tells him that it isn't and that's just the end of Vetter's life as he knows it.
Vetter then rounds on Gibbs, telling Gibbs that this is what the FBI have been doing to him: threats, intimidation and then states that he won't stand for it.
Gibbs then calmly remarks that Vetter told him that he regarded Petty Officer Smith as a daughter to him.
Vetter wants to know about that.
"Considering you were sleeping with her, a lot", Gibbs replies.
Vetter's rocked by that news and then demands a lawyer.
Gibbs then tells Vetter that he'll need one and then tells the Captain that Smith was murdered which has Vetter stunned.
Fornell then approaches Vetter and tells the Captain that they believe that Vetter himself is responsible for Smith's death.
Gibbs then asks where Vetter was Wednesday night.
Vetter tells them that he was at home with his wife.
Fornell then tells Vetter that they checked with his wife and that Audrey Vetter told them that her husband actually went out and didn't come back until around midnight. Vetter insists that his wife's lying.
"Maybe", Gibbs replies.
Fornell then tells Vetter that women do tend to get vindictive when they learn that their spouses have been cheating on them.
Vetter's stunned that his wife knows about his affair with Petty Officer Smith.
Gibbs then reveals that he was the one who told Vetter's wife and then states that the Captain might want to get a divorce lawyer while he's at it.
As this goes on, in Observation, Kate and McGee exchange glances with one another.
Vetter then insists that he didn't kill Petty Officer Smith and that he loved her.
Fornell then tells Gibbs that Vetter loved him and that they've got to let Vetter go. Gibbs agrees but thinks that it should happen only after Vetter's served about eighty or ninety years in Leavenworth.
Fornell tells Vetter that he has means, motive and no alibi which means that at the moment, Captain Vetter is their number one suspect in the investigation.
Gibbs wants to know if Smith caught Vetter taking the kickbacks or if she was helping him.
Vetter then cracks, informing them that Smith caught him and that the money was supposed to have been for them after Vetter divorced his wife.
Vetter then protests that he's innocent and that he didn't and he couldn't have murdered Petty Officer Smith.
"You know what might help me believe him, Gibbs?", Fornell asks.
"If he started crying?", Gibbs suggests.
Fornell refuses and then demands Vetter tell them where the money is.
Vetter then realizes that they're offering him a deal but Gibbs tells him that it depends before asking Vetter who else knew the location of the money.
Vetter tells them that only he and Jessica knew the location.
But it's clear that Gibbs and Fornell don't believe him.
A while later, while Tony and Kate sit outside the gym, Tony then voices his belief that Vetter was telling the truth and that he stashed the money in a gym locker.
It then cuts to Gibbs and Fornell who are in MTAC, watching the proceedings happen while in the car, Tony's talking to Gibbs on a walkie-talker while Kate films the footage with a camera.
Tony then reveals that the money total is about $800,000 and that it's in a green duffle bag.
In MTAC, Fornell asks Gibbs who's going to be picking up the money with Gibbs remarking, "Our killer".
At a console, McGee who's been analyzing the bag tells Gibbs that the GPS marker Tony put with the money is showing movement.
Gibbs then tells Tony that the bag's in play and tells him to have Kate tighten up on the entrance to the gym.
Tony agrees and then tells Kate to go tighter which she does.
The gym doors open and the missing Petty Officer Lynn Simons emerges. Tony voices this with Gibbs remarking, "Well, yes, Tony. We can all see that". Tony's annoyed by that comment and then wonders if they should take Simons down. Gibbs refuses, stating that he wants to know where Simons is going.
"Whoa", Fornell says. "That's $800,000 in there, Jethro".
"Relax, Tobias", Gibbs states. "It's not yours".
In the lab, Abby who's working on erasing the footage of a gay cowboy gets a beep from her computer, confirming that the blood on the radio-speaker Gibbs and Kate found in Petty Officer Smith's bedroom belongs to Lynn Simons.
She dials Gibbs's number and upon him answering, tells him that she ran the blood drop from the circuit through AFDIL- (Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory) but her news is interrupted when Gibbs tells her that they already know who it belongs before hanging up.
Abby then grabs one of her toy dolls, remarking that she really hates it when Gibbs does that.
In MTAC and at the console, McGee reveals that Simons is heading for Bethesda.
As Simons's car heads around a corner, Tony and Kate, having stopped a few meters back are already at the scene with Kate's camera continuing to send the live footage back to MTAC.
Simons's car pulls into a spot and it's obvious that she's waiting for someone.
Commander Witten emerges and Tony voices his concern that Simons might be picking up Witten. But Witten simply heads for his car with Tony still beliving that Witten's going to follow Simons.
As Witten leaves, Simons just stays put while Kate gleefully tells Tony to guess again.
It then shows that the person Simons is waiting for is actually Catherine Reynolds, Tony's "girlfriend".
Tony just throws his walkie-talkie aside, disgusted.
As Reynolds gets into Simons's car, Gibbs and Fornell silently watch on from MTAC.
Inside the car, Reynolds and Simons then exchange a passionate kiss.
Reynolds wants to know if Simons got the money. Simons assures her that she did.
It looks like a cushy affair but that changes when Reynolds produces a gun, ordering Simons to get out.
Simons wants to know what's going out. Reynolds tells her she's going to do what she always does: survive.
Simons protests, stating that if it wasn't for her, then Reynolds would never have gotten Smith back into the hospital or even the location where she hid the money.
Reynolds agrees before stating, "Get out, bitch".
At that moment, Tony descends on the car, ordering Reynolds drop the gun while Kate's a few meters away, her gun trained on the passenger seat where Reynolds is. Both Reynolds and Simons are stunned with Reynolds attempting to shoot Simons while Simons insists that the gun isn't loaded and begs for Tony and Kate not to shoot.
This distraction gives Tony just enough time to grab Reynolds's arms and slam her right arm against the door-frame of the car, causing Reynolds to drop the gun. Reynolds snaps at Tony not to touch her.
Tony retorts that she's not his type before ordering Simons to get her hands on the wheel which Simons does.
While this goes on, numerous people are standing by, watching the scene unfold. Tony orders Kate to cuff Reynolds (the whack-job) which Kate gladly does.
Simons just sits there, her hands on the steering wheel, still struggling to come to terms with what's happened.
In the bullpen, a few hours later, while the team are busy wrapping up the paperwork for the case, a grinning Tony sends Kate a photo of her Wet T-Shirt competition which has the slogan, "NCIS Agent of the Month". Kate gives Tony a sarcastic smile and then hits a few keys on her keyboard.
Tony then looks at the message which is him of posing as a gay cowboy and tells Kate that it's not him. She tells him of course it isn't but it's too bad no-one else is going to notice that, though.
Tony snaps that it's low while Kate retorts that she learnt from the best.
Kate then suggests that they delete their photos at the same time.
Tony agrees and suggests, "On three".
However, their attempts to delete them go wrong when they end up being sent to Gibbs's inbox instead with the beep informing Gibbs that he has two unread messages.
This has Tony and Kate both freaking out and they wisely decide to leave the bullpen before Gibbs decides to open the emails.
Once they've headed into the elevator, Gibbs presses a few buttons.
It then cuts to Gibbs who upon seeing one of the emails, smiles, obviously amused.
- Kate refers to her past dating relationship with Tony's old fraternity brother, in The Meat Puzzle (episode).
- Abby claims that the 15 mg of Trazodone the victim was given would have knocked her out. However the standard starting dosage of Trazodone (an SSRI anti-depressant) is 50mg which may make you drowsy, but wouldn't necessarily knock you out; 150mg might.
- In this episode, the murdered officer was under the treatment of a psychologist, who worked in and ran a ward of a mental facility, and handled her medication. A psychologist can't actually dispense medicine—the actual term is psychiatrist.
- Gibbs admits to having no expertise in the area of psychology... "Just a BS meter."
- Kate tries to explain to McGee that Goat-Rope "means halfway between FUBAR and SNAFU," but doesn't care to elaborate that FUBAR stands for "F***** Up Beyond All Recognition" and SNAFU for "Situation Normal, All F***** Up."
- When McGee is listing the things the three women had in common, he manages to say "knitting, crossword puzzles, the TV show Quan--" before Gibbs interrupts him. It's pretty easy to assume he was about to say "Quantum Leap", another Bellisario program.
- At the beginning of the episode, McGee is seen giving Abby her Caf-Pow yet just before Gibbs comes off the lift and heads into the bullpen, Abby's seen walking to Gibbs's desk, carrying a folder minus the Caf-Pow and McGee is still holding the Caf-Pow. However just before Gibbs throws the keys to Tony, Abby can be seen holding the Caf-Pow again.
- Season Two Cast
|Leroy Jethro Gibbs||Mark Harmon||An NCIS Special Agent in charge of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Anthony DiNozzo||Michael Weatherly||The Senior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team and also the second-in-command.|
|Caitlin Todd||Sasha Alexander||A Secret Service Agent previously assigned to the Presidential Protection Detail on Air Force One and who is now an NCIS Special Agent as well as Tony DiNozzo's partner.|
|Abigail Sciuto||Pauley Perette||A Goth who is also the Chief Forensic Scientist and who also works for the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Timothy McGee||Sean Murray (actor)||An NCIS Special Agent previously assigned to the Norfolk Naval Base who is now the Junior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Donald Mallard||David McCallum||NCIS's Chief Medical Examiner.|
|Tobias Fornell||Joe Spano||An agent with the FBI.|
|James Palmer||Brian Dietzen||Gerald Jackson's temporary replacement as the Assistant Medical Examiner.|
|Catherine Reynolds||Brigid Brannagh||A woman who was at a psych ward at Bethesda and also one of Petty Officer Jessica Smith's killers.|
|Ross Vetter||Dan Ziskie||A Captain in the Navy who worked at the Department of Acquisitions and who's under investigation for accepting kickbacks in exchange for government contracts.|
|Lynn Simons||Jennifer Dundas||A former Petty Officer and another one of Petty Officer Jessica Smith's killers.|
|Jessica Smith||Hilary Salvatore||A Petty Officer who supposedly commits suicide although Ducky later discovers she was actually murdered.|
|Audrey Vetter||Molly Hagan||Captain Ross Vetter's wife.|
|Allan Witten||Dean McDermott||A Commander and also Petty Officer Jessica Smith's therapist/psychiatrist.|
|William the Truthteller||Kevin Quigley||A man at a psych ward in Bethesda.|
|Timothy Morgan||Jonathan Redford||A Corpsman who works at the same psych ward in Bethesda.|
|Alex Taylor||Robert Ray Manning Jr.||A local police officer.|
|Fraternity Pledge Leader||Jason Maxim||A man who appears in the episode.|