Dead Reflection is the twenty-first episode in Season Eight of NCIS and the 183rd episode of the entire NCIS series.
The NCIS team investigate when a Naval officer is found dead in an office in the Pentagon with her murder being recorded via security camera. It appears to be a simple and easy case but then the team later discover that their main suspect has died, having suffered an apparent heart attack, leading them to suspect that someone else is responsible for killing the Naval officer and as this goes on, Agent Barrett's team continue investigating the Port to Port serial killings, culminating in a shocking revelation being revealed, one that leaves all the NCIS personnel stunned.
The episode opens with an overhead view of the Pentagon while a DJ welcomes his Washington D.C. listeners while remarking that it's 6:45am and it's a chilly 59 degrees before telling his audience he'll warm them up by playing a little Jamaica jive.
As the music plays, it then cuts to a level inside the Pentagon as Bates, a janitor who works at the Pentagon arrives up on the floor after traveling on an escalator.
He's busy listening to the music and as he approaches his office, he sees a familiar face which causes him to remove his headphones and remark that they got in early.
It's a woman named Corporal Jameson who tells him that she was lost all weekend without her credit cards. She even states that she was just about to cancel them when she got Bates's text before asking Bates where he found her wallet.
Bates tells her it was in the copy room and that he found it while he was moping behind a shredder.
As Bates prepares to let himself into his office, Jameson is stunned as to how her wallet got beind a shredder in the copy room.
"Beats me", Bates replies.
While he's busy dumping his bag inside on a table, Jameson who's waiting outside tells Bates that he saved her a fortune because without her credit cards, she couldn't go shopping.
Bates remarks that he wishes that his wife would lose hers before heading outside and giving Jameson her wallet.
She asks him if he's had his coffee yet.
Bates gets tongue-tied for a second but Jameson tells him to join her because she's buying.
While shutting the door to his office, Bates remarks that any distraction on a Monday morning is a good one.
It then cuts to inside Bates's office where just as the door closes, it reveals that behind is the body of a young woman who's lying on the ground behind some mops with her ID tag saying "Ross", identifying her as Lieutenant Lauren Ross.
In the Squadroom and from their Bullpen, NCIS Special Agents Timothy McGee, Anthony DiNozzo and Ziva David are busy examining the human eyeball that Tony received in a drink in the previous episode while their boss and team leader, Leroy Jethro Gibbs and fellow Special Agent Erica Jane Barrett head down the stairs.
McGee comments with disbelief that it was in Tony's gin and tonic with Tony commenting that it was a real eye-opener.
McGee states that it must have freaked Tony out with Tony agreeing and stating that he thought he needed a drink before, he really needed one after.
McGee wants to know where the eyeball is right now with Ziva telling McGee that Ducky has it.
As Gibbs and EJ approach the Bullpen, Tony notices that Gibbs isn't smiling.
"When is he?", Ziva remarks.
As Gibbs heads in, he announces that EJ and her team are taking over the Port-to-Port case while Ziva seems surprised that EJ even has a team.
As Gibbs grabs something from his desk locker, EJ in her own part of the sqaudroom tells Ziva, Tony and McGee that her team members, Agents Cade and Levin are finally en route and that she'd appreciate it if Gibbs's team gave them a warm welcome because they're top-notch agents and maybe Gibbs's team can pick up a few points.
This statement leaves McGee and Tony extremely annoyed with Ziva wondering what Barrett means by that statement.
At his desk, McGee wonders what they're doing with Gibbs announcing that they're going to the D-wing of the Pentagon to investigate a dead Navy Lieutenant.
As Tony gets ready, he and EJ exchange a smile which Gibbs unsurprisingly notices and as Gibbs leaves the bullpen, he tells his team, "Let's go" with Ziva, Tony and McGee grabbing their belongings and joining Gibbs at the Elevator.
A while later, the area has been sealed off and numerous personnel are coming to see what's going on, only to be stopped by a security guard.
Palmer states that the victim's C5 and C6 vertebrae are shattered.
Ducky prompts Palmer again with Palmer stating that there are no signs of bruising or ligatures.
Ducky wonders what that suggests with Palmer stating that it means that Ross's neck was broken efficiently and that someone had martial arts skills while behind Ducky, Ziva is busy interviewing Bates, the janitor.
Ducky then hands Palmer a scanner while asking for the approximate time of death.
Palmer then smiles and takes the scanner while behind him, Gibbs is talking to Captain Jack Painter, Ross's C.O.
Gibbs wants to know how long Ross was under Painter's command with Painter explaining that Ross came aboard the previous summer, August being the month she started.
Painter is in disbelief over the fact that something like this has happened, more or less in the Pentagon.
Gibbs also wants to know the last time Painter saw Ross. Painter tells him that it was Friday and that Ross had taken some personal time off the previous week due to doctor's appointments which has Gibbs surprised.
As Gibbs scribbles those down, Painter stated that Ross wanted to come in this weekend to catch up.
Gibbs wants to know what exactly Painter's department does.
Painter remarks that they keep records and that they're part of the joint DOD- Department of Defense Command Center.
"Sensitive stuff, huh?", Gibbs says.
"Some", Painter replies before saying that they mostly handle routine documents.
Gibbs then tells Painter that he's got it and as Gibbs continues writing, it cuts to Painter who's still in shock over what's happened.
As Painter leaves, Gibbs heads into the crime scene, asking Ducky if he has a time of death which Ducky asks Palmer for. Palmer then states that the Lieutenant died between two and three o'clock, Sunday afternoon.
"Yesterday?", Gibbs wonders.
"Mmm-hmm", Palmer confirms.
Suddenly, Gibbs's cell-phone rings. He answers the phone with the caller being revealed as McGee with Gibbs telling McGee that he's on his way.
With that, Gibbs then leaves the crime scene once again.
A while later, Gibbs arrives at the control room with McGee stating, "The Pentagon, boss. One of the most secure buildings in the world".
McGee then explains that there are several rooms just like this one that are covering different rings throughout the building.
"Why don't you tell him how sides it has, Tim?", Tony wonders.
McGee just pulls a face before going on to say that they pulled footage from 2:13 Sunday afternoon.
Almost instantly, on screen, footage of Lt. Ross talking to a man pops up on the screen and as the footage continues playing, Tony remarks that the guy seems friendly enough before telling Gibbs to watch this.
In the video, Ross is seen greeting the man before promptly turning away with the man walking after her and breaking her neck, killing her instantly before Ross's lifeless body falls into the man's arms who then proceeds to dump the remains into the janitor's office.
Tony remarks that it was pretty professional.
"No question what happened", Gibbs grimly states.
The security guard playing the footage then stops it and zooms in on the man's face, bringing up his name which Gibbs recognizes as being Petty Officer Donner while from his seat, McGee then asks Gibbs if he's ever had a murder case this easy.
It then cuts to Gibbs who's still staring at the footage of the killer.
At her desk, Ziva is busy shuffling through some files, obviously looking for something. She eventually finds what she's looking for and heads over but stops upon seeing EJ talking to someone.
EJ then asks Ziva if she needs something with Ziva assuring the other Agent that she's fine before Ziva heads off with EJ staring after her.
Ziva then heads over to McGee's desk just as McGee hangs up the phone. McGee tells Ziva that Lieutenant Ross's roommate is here and that the roommate is being brought to the Conference Room.
Ziva leans in and tells McGee that she's not sure how she feels about that woman, EJ.
They both look over at EJ with McGee stating that he knows what Ziva means while Ziva states that EJ is what her Bubbe David would call a real nidchefet- a nose pusher.
McGee tells her that he can only guess what "nidchefet" means with Ziva explaining that it loses something in translation.
As this happens, Gibbs and Tony arrive back in and as Tony dumps his backpack behind his desk, he tells Ziva and McGee that neither Petty Officer Donner nor his wife were at the residence before wondering if McGee put out a BOLO.
"Yes, Tony", McGee snaps sarcastically.
Gibbs wants to know what McGee has found.
The team then gather at the plasma screen while Tony suddenly develops an interest in the man EJ is talking to and as that goes on, McGee explains that Donner and Ross worked in the same department, that they were both very friendly and cordial to each other and that none of their co-workers noticed any animosity.
Ziva then states to Gibbs that there's no apparent motive for Donner murdering Ross.
As Tony glances back at EJ again with Gibbs joining in, McGee explains that Donner was formally attached to a covert Navy Special Warfare unit and trained in hand-to-hand combat.
Gibbs and Tony then return their attention to the briefing as McGee continues to reveal that an injury Donner sustained two years ago sidelined Donner to the clerical job Donner now has at the Pentagon.
Tony then glances back at EJ again with Ziva copying him. Tony wants to know what EJ is doing with that geek, Steve from the IT Department.
Ziva simply shrugs and tells Tony that she has no idea before opening the file she has and revealing that Donner is married to a woman named Kelsey and that Kelsey Donner is a civilian security guard at the Indian Head Naval Support Facility.
McGee then picks up, stating that their victim, Lieutenant Ross was an Annapolis graduate who was born in Missoula, Montana and that her parents and a younger brother still there.
Gibbs wants to know if Ross was married but McGee tells him that Ross was single, that Ross shared an apartment with a roommate in Alexandria before stating the roommate is here and is currently being brought to the conference room.
Gibbs then tells McGee to take DiNozzo and go interview the roommate while Gibbs himself and Ziva will talk to Donner's wife.
Tony is still distracted, staring at EJ until Ziva slaps him in the chest which gets Tony going again.
In the conference room, Emma Park (Dead Reflection), Lt. Ross's roommate has arrived with McGee stating that they appreciate her coming in.
As Tony gives Emma some water, Emma wants to know if Lauren's parents know about their daughter's death.
McGee confirms that Casualty Assistance Officers are notifying them. As Emma drinks some water, Tony wants to know the last time she saw Lt. Ross.
Emma tells them that it was Sunday morning and that they had coffee at Starbucks before she went into the office.
Tony wonders if Emma did think anything of it when Ross didn't come home last night.
Emma places her glass on the table before stating that Ross was seeing someone and that it wasn't unusual for Ross to spend the night out but she normally called.
McGee wants to know who Ross was seeing with Tony stating that they just need a name.
Emma pauses for a second before telling them that under the circumstances, she can tell them. She then reveals that the guy Ross was seeing is married.
Tony wants to know the name but Emma insists that she honestly doesn't know because Ross felt uncomfortable talking about it and Emma didn't press.
Emma then states that she knew Lauren and that Lauren would tell her when she was ready.
Tony wonders if Lt. Ross ever mentioned a Petty Officer Eric Donner but Emma tells him that she doesn't think so.
McGee then gives Emma a photo of Donner which Emma looks at before she tells the two Agents that she's never seen Donner.
It then cuts to McGee and DiNozzo who look distant.
At the entrance to the Indian Head Naval Support Facility, Gibbs and Ziva are busy talking to a security guard where a Base Security SUV pulls up.
Gibbs and Ziva then thank the guard and head off to the SUV where Kelsey Donner emerges, asking them if they're NCIS. Gibbs holds up his badge, identifying himself and Ziva as NCIS Special Agents.
Kelsey then tells them that she got a call that they were looking for her before wondering, "What's up?".
Gibbs states that they're trying to find her husband which has Kelsey wondering if something happened to her husband.
Ziva wants to know when she saw Eric Donner last. Kelsey pauses for a second before stating that it was Friday morning before he left for work.
Gibbs is sure that Kelsey didn't see him this weekend with Kelsey insisting that she didn't.
"You do live together?", Gibbs asks.
"Yeah", Kelsey replies.
Ziva wants to know if everything's okay between the two of them.
Kelsey states that there is and that she got a text from him Friday night that had him telling her that something came up and then he said that he was going to call on Sunday and he didn't.
Gibbs then wonders if Kelsey wasn't worried but she tells them that she's used to not knowing where her husband is and that for six years he was attached to the Navy Special Warfare Unit with everything he did there being secret and black ops.
Kelsey also states that her husband was gone a lot and that he couldn't tell her anything although the talk is interrupted by a helicopter flying overheard.
Once it's passed, Kelsey tells them that her husband didn't like being tied to a desk at the Pentagon and that he always wanted to get back into Special Ops before stating that's what she thought happened this weekend.
She then wonders if something went wrong because it has to be the reason NCIS is looking for him.
Ziva then states that Kelsey's husband is a person of interest in the murder of a co-worker.
As Kelsey struggles to digest the news, Ziva wonders if Petty Officer Donner ever mentioned a woman named Lt. Lauren Ross?
Kelsey hesitates for a second before stating, "No" and that she doesn't think so.
It then cuts to Gibbs who stares at Kelsey.
Later, as they head back to the car, Ziva remarks that she believes that Kelsey Donner knows more than she's telling them.
"You think?", Gibbs replies before suggesting that they stake out her house.
Back at NCIS, Tony's heading back to his desk where he spots something that instantly catches his eye and has him calling out McGee's name.
As McGee looks up from his work, Tony announces that it looks like one of Barrett's team has arrived. McGee admits that he didn't notice before working again.
Tony states that McGee is an investigator and that he's paid to notice.
Tony then grabs a big NCIS cap and places it on his head as McGee demands to know what Tony's doing before warning Tony not to mess with any of the stuff belonging to EJ's team.
Tony simply ignores him and then examines the jacket which he claims is ginormous.
McGee then gets up from his desk as Tony puts on the jacket while stating that he hasn't seen anything this big since John Candy's jockey shorts in Planes, Trains and Automobiles.
McGee from the edge of their bullpen demands that Tony take the jacket off but Tony ignores him, wondering if the person who wears it is the Hulk or what?
Tony then states in a deep tone that he is an enormous big dumb oaf as McGee glances to something or someone behind Tony.
McGee calls Tony's name again and it cuts to show that EJ has arrived in the bullpen with a new member of her team. She then tells Tony that the big dumb oaf has an IQ of 160.
As EJ walks off, stopping in front of Tony, her unnamed teammate removes the cap, remarking that this must be DiNozzo, an ashamed Tony replies "Hi".
As McGee heads off, Tony takes off the jacket while the teammates remarks that was warned about Tony.
"Sorry.. It's..", Tony replies.
EJ then gets in Tony's face, smugly telling him that her teammates doesn't like it when people wear his hat.
Back at the desk, the unnamed teammate is simply unpacking his things, pausing to give Tony the evil eye.
In the morgue, as Palmer puts up an X-ray and just as Gibbs arrives in, Ducky is telling EJ that Abby is expanding the DNA search and that the owner of the eyeball is male, has undergone LASIK surgery and is in his 30s before Ducky hangs up.
As Ducky approaches the table, he calls EJ a very sorry young lady with Gibbs telling him that EJ is just doing her job before announcing that his priority is the murder of Lt. Ross and he tells Ducky that they've got a suspect, that Gibbs needs to wrap the case up before telling Ducky that he mentioned that he found something.
Ducky states that he hasn't begun the autopsy yet but he thought that Gibbs should know that Lt. Ross was eight to ten weeks pregnant.
Gibbs then looks down at Ross's body before glancing over at Palmer who gives him a small smile.
It then cuts to Gibbs who looks disappointed at the news.
A few hours later, Tony and Ziva are staking out the Donner residence.
As they sit in the car, Tony eating onion rings, Ziva a salad, Tony remarks that salads aren't stakeout food with Ziva stating that the should be because at least salads don't stink up the car.
Tony wants to know if Ziva wants an onion ring with Ziva stating that she doesn't while Tony tells her, "Your loss" before eating the onion ring.
Ziva wants to know if Gibbs has spoken to Tony about Barrett, about dating. Tony simply shakes his head and says "Nope".
Ziva sighs and runs a hand through her hair before asking Tony if he's sure Gibbs knows.
"He's Gibbs", Tony replies. "He knows everything" before stating that Gibbs read Barrett the riot act.
Ziva remarks that that isn't good before suggesting that Tony should go talk to Gibbs himself and that he and Gibbs go way back before stating that it's the big rhinoceros in the room that no-one wants to talk about.
Tony corrects her by stating that it's actually an elephant in the room and that it isn't a hippopoptamus, a rhinoceros and that it's an elephant before asking Ziva about her and CIRay- a reference to Ziva's boyfriend, CIA agent Ray Cruz.
Ziva then insists that her relationship with Ray is over. Tony then wonders if Ziva hasn't spoken to Ray.
Ziva admits that Ray has left her messages, texts and emails but she hasn't read them.
Tony wonders if Ray's still in Washington but Ziva stops him upon seeing a SUV approach the Donner household.
As Tony gets the camera ready, Ziva wonders if that's Donner. Tony then takes a few photographs of the mysterious man exiting the SUV before stating that is most definitely not Eric Donner.
"Well, then, who is it?", Ziva wonders.
From the car, they watch as the unnamed man heads up the path to the Donner household and as Kelsey Donner emerges, hugging the man, Tony takes more photographs while remarking that whoever the man is, he's getting a little squeeze from Kelsey Donner and as this happens, Kelsey and the man then enter the house together.
Tony then reaches for a laptop which is stashed on the board and as he sets it up, he remarks that he's going to download these pictures and send them to McGee and Abby or "McAbby" and that they can run some facial recognition.
Ziva disagrees, stating that it'll be easier if she runs his licence plate. Tony protests that his way is easier with Ziva unsurprisingly disagreeing.
Tony then tells Ziva that he'll bet her but she just gets out of the car and heads down the street while Tony brings up the photos.
In the lab, as McGee keeps an eye on the recognition system, Abigail Sciuto is pacing back and forth while remarking that she hopes this isn't going to take long.
McGee tells her that it shouldn't and that they're only running the image against Naval officers.
Abby then glances at the watch on McGee's right wrist and then begins pacing again, causing McGee to wonder if Abby is in a hurry with Abby eventually admitting that she is.
Suddenly, the software pops up a face with McGee revealing that the man in question is Commander Nelson Tunney.
"Great", Abby says.
Back in the car and as Ziva works on the laptop, Tony's cell-phone rings.
It's Abby who tells him that they've got a name but Tony states that he already knows the name: Commander Nelson Tunney.
"If you already knew, then why did you keep us here so late?", Abby demands from the lab while McGee continues searching for information.
In the car, Tony apologizes, stating that Ziva ran the licence plate which has Ziva smiling, obviously very smug.
In the lab, McGee tells Abby to let her talk to Tony.
Abby hands the phone over and McGee announces that Tunney was Donner's former C.O. in a Naval Special Warfare unit.
Tony tells McGee good work and thanks before they both hang up and as that happens, a voice calls to Abby that they thought she was going to meet them in the squad room.
It then pans over to reveal NCIS Special Agent Simon Cade, the guy who is a member of EJ's team and who Tony unknowingly mocked earlier.
As McGee looks on, Abby greets Simon before apologizing and stating that something came up.
Simon wonders if they're still on for tonight with Abby telling him that they are and to let her go get her coat.
With that, Abby grabs her phone from McGee and then heads into the next room to get ready, leaving Simon and McGee alone and after a moment of silence, the two Agents exchange greetings.
The next morning, in the Pentagon, Painter is telling Gibbs that it's been a surreal experience and that they've made crisis counsellors available to the staff but it's been hard to focus.
Gibbs understands while Painter wants to know if they've found Donner yet. Gibbs admits that they haven't, not yet at least.
Painter is in disbelief over the fact that there would be any kind of problem between both Donner and Lt. Ross.
Gibbs then tells Painter that NCIS believes that Donner and Ross were having a sexual relationship before asking Painter if he ever saw any evidence of that.
Painter admits that he didn't before wondering why NCIS would think. Gibbs states that NCIS knows that Lt. Ross was dating a married man.
"Are you sure?", Painter asks.
Gibbs assures him that they are because Ross was pregnant before telling Painter that NCIS's Medical Examiner is testing the foetus's DNA for a possible match.
Painter then takes Gibbs to a corner before telling the Agent not to bother because he'll save Gibbs and NCIS some time.
Painter then reveals that he's the married man having the affair with Lt. Ross and he's also most likely the father of her unborn baby.
It then cuts to Gibbs who is still looking at Painter.
In the squadroom, Cade and EJ emerge from an area just as Ziva, Commander Tunney and Tony walk past them into the Conference Room. Ziva tells Tunney to come this way, please.
As Ziva heads into the conference room and Cade heads off, EJ remarks that she told Tony that she didn't like his old cologne and that this one is way worse.
Tony remarks that it isn't him, it's Commander Tunney.
EJ then nods before wondering how late Tony and Ziva worked last night.
Tony ignores the question, stating that he's gotta get into the conference room before he heads into the room and as Tony shuts the door, Ziva is already busy interviewing Tunney, wondering when was the last time Tunney saw Donner.
Tunney states that it was last week and when asked where, Tunney replies that it was a sports bar on U Street before revealing that he'd gotten back from a tour of the Middle East and that Tunney and Donner got together to catch up.
Tony wants to know how Donner was with Tunney replying that Donner seemed fine and as Tony begins taking notes, Ziva tells Tunney that Kelsey Donner thought that her husband might have been on assignment with Tunney's unit.
Tunney agrees, stating that Donner had told him that he was bored with his clerical job at the Pentagon but that he wasn't doing anything for Spec War.
Tony wants to know if Tunney is sure about that.
Turrey explains that Donner was injured a couple of years ago in an accident and as a result, Donner had to drop out of the unit because he could never pass the physical.
Tony then wonders where was the last time Tunney saw Kelsey Donner which leaves Tunney stunned before he calms down and states that she rang him yesterday after Kelsey had spoken to NCIS before revealing that Kelsey was pretty upset and that Tunney stopped by to console her.
Tony and Ziva then glance at each other.
In the lab, with her music playing, Abby is looking over the footage of Petty Officer Donner and Lt. Ross and trying to figure out something. McGee comes in, asking her if she's still messing with that.
Abby states that she is but she can't figure out what they're saying.
McGee wants to know how last night went which leaves Abby puzzled.
"Yeah", McGee replies. "You and Special Agent Cade".
Abby then smiles, stating Cade is great before wondering if McGee's spoken to him.
McGee states that he hasn't.
Abby then tells McGee that he should and she explains that Simon doesn't know anyone in Washington and that he's living out of a hotel but he's still looking for a place with Abby thinking that she would show him around.
As McGee fumes, Abby then states that maybe she could get off Ross's lips off this mirror in the footage. She then highlights the footage as McGee asks her where she and Simon went.
Abby reveals that they went to an Indian restaurant where Cade spoke Hindi with the waiter and after that they then took a cab to a club in Georgetown where Cade had a conversation in Swahili with the cab driver.
McGee then realizes that Cade is a linguist.
Abby then goes on about how Cade is very, very, very smart and endearing much to McGee's jealously. She then states that Cade's a jock and that he played football in college.
"Where?", McGee asks.
Abby states that it was Yale and that Cade is all Ivy League.
McGee then remarks that he hopes that Abby didn't show Cade all of her tattoos.
Abby then turns away and pointing a finger at McGee, remarks that McGee is jealous.
McGee just ignores the question and offers to take a look at the security footage which has Abby smiling.
It then cuts to McGee who looks very pissed off.
Abby tells him that the lips are moving but it's very distorted and out of focus before revealing that she's going to have to work on it.
McGee just looks at Abby and silently nods while Abby smiles before nodding again.
Up in the bullpen, Ziva is showing Tony and Gibbs Donner's text and phone records. She then reveals that Donner's phone isn't transmitting right now and that the last communication was the text that Donner sent his wife on Saturday.
Gibbs wants to know where it came from.
Ziva reveals that it came from a cell tower in Fairfax County just as Cade shouts, "There he is!".
This has Ziva, Tony and Gibbs stopping what they're doing and looking over to the bullpen.
Cade then remarks that it's about time and it shows a young African-American man wandering into the bullpen and as Gibbs, Tony and Ziva look on, the three agents exchange greetings with EJ stating that she thought that the man was going to the hotel.
As they hug, the African-American man states that he came straight from Dulles before wondering how EJ is doing. EJ remarks that she's good before the African-American man exchange a fist-bump.
EJ wonders what the memory stick is with the African-American man stating that it's photos of a British sailor killed in Singapore with some similarities to the Port-to-Port case.
The man then states that it's nothing but he thought that his team should at least see it.
As Cade gets ready to load it up, EJ introduces the man who is Special Agent Gayne Levin to Gibbs, Ziva and DiNozzo, Levin shakes hands with Gibbs, remarking that he's heard a lot about Gibbs.
Gibbs wonders how Levin's doing before Levin, Ziva and Tony all exchange greetings as well.
As this happens, Gibbs answers his phone while at his desk, Cade announces that he has it up with EJ announcing that they should put it on the big screen.
"Like they have a big screen", Tony says.
EJ then grabs a remote and hits a button just as a big TV or plasma screen emerges, causing Tony to state that it's jumbotron and wonder where EJ got that.
EJ states that Steve from I.T hooked her up with Levin stating that it's pretty nice.
"Yeah", Tony replies. "It's very, uh, motorized".
As a photo of a Navy sailor with his throat cut pops up on the screen, Gibbs hangs up and tells Ziva and Tony to gear up because Virginia State Police found Petty Officer Donner.
As they all head off to grab their belongings, Tony wonders if Donner's talking but Gibbs states that he isn't because Donner is actually dead.
At the crime scene which is a small hill, Ziva and McGee are busy taking a statement from an officer while down below, Tony is taking photographs while Gibbs heads over to the car to see what Ducky and Jimmy have.
Ducky states that he doesn't think that Donner died in the accident because there's no apparent trauma to the body.
"What? Car drifted off the road, came down the embankment?" Gibbs states before asking what the cause of death is.
Ducky admits that he has no idea but that there is something odd and he explains that Donner is no longer in rigour.
"Meaning what?", Gibbs asks.
Ducky then states that Donner has been here long enough so that he's stiffened and then unstiffened with Palmer stating that the tell-tale signs are the skin slip, discoloration and marbling and finishing with the news that Donner's been here a while.
"How long?", Gibbs wonders.
Ducky states that it's at least four days but Gibbs refuses to believe that, stating that they've got footage of Donner killing Lt. Ross in the Pentagon two days ago.
Palmer looks at Ducky who tells Gibbs that Donner could not have been there.
It then cuts to Gibbs who looks stunned.
- NCIS Special Agents Simon Cade and Gayne Lavin, both of whom are members of EJ Barrett's team are both introduced for the first time.
- This is Alimi Ballard's second time working with Michael Weatherly as the two had previously appeared together in "Dark Angel".
- While uploading the photos, Tony makes a reference to McAbby, the term used by fans of the show in describing a possible romantic relationship between NCIS Special Agent Timothy McGee and NCIS Forensic Scientist Abigail Sciuto.
|Leroy Jethro Gibbs||Mark Harmon||Special Agent in charge of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Anthony DiNozzo||Michael Weatherly||Senior Agent and second-in-command of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Ziva David||Cote de Pablo||NCIS Probationary Agent and also a member of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Timothy McGee||Sean Murray (actor)||Junior Special Agent of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Abigail Sciuto||Pauley Perrette||Chief Forensic Specialist of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Leon Vance||Rocky Carroll||Director of NCIS.|
|Donald Mallard||David McCallum||Chief Medical Examiner of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|James Palmer||Brian Dietzen||Assistant Medical Examiner.|
|Erica Jane Barrett||Sarah Jane Morris (actress)||Special Agent in Charge of a team formerly based in Rota, Spain.|
|Simon Cade||Matt Willig||NCIS Special Agent attached to Barrett's MCRT previously stationed in Rota.|
|Gayne Levin||Alimi Ballard||NCIS Special Agent attached to Barrett's MCRT previously stationed in Rota.|
|Jack Painter||Terrell Tilford||Captain in the United States Navy who was having an affair with Lauren Ross.|
|Commander Nelson Tunney, USN||Jeffrey Johnson||United States Navy responsible for killing Lt. Lauren Ross.|
|Lieutenant Junior Grade Lauren Ross, USN||Kimberly Alexander||United States Navy and the victim who was pregnant with Painter's child.|
|Jameson||Alicia Ziegler||A Corporal in the United States Marine Corps.|
|Petty Officer Eric Donner, USN||Jason Sarcinelli||United States Navy whose body is later found in a car. It's later revealed that he had died of a heart attack and that Nelson Tunney had copied his face in an attempt to stop himself from being exposed in a recent scandal.|
|Kelsey Donner||Cara Pifko||Petty Officer Erin Donner's wife.|
|Miles Hogan||John Ales||A guy who makes masks of people for a living. Like Abby, he drinks Caf-Pow.|
|Emma Park (Dead Reflection)||Milauna Jackson||Lt. Lauren Ross's room-mate.|
|Bates||Terry Woodberry||A janitor assigned to work at the Pentagon.|