Whoopi Goldberg easily earns another Emmy nom on this episode of “Law & Order: SVU,” as a child buys a snack from a convenience store and the clerk asks him where his mom is. Benson got a call to go to the convenience store. When she got there Finn was there because the boy wouldn’t talk to anyone and the police didn’t know what to do with him.
Olivia talked to the boy but he wouldn’t respond to her either. Eventually she got him to say his name was Bruno. Rollins and Sonny talked to parents at a local playground to try and find out who the boy’s mom is. Benson and Sonny went to child protective services Benson told a worker there that the boy was found abandoned.
Benson and Sonny went to the house of the employee and found an unconscious child named Keisha locked in a cage. In the hospital, Benson and Sonny were told Keisha was starved and dehydrated so bad her organs were shutting down.
Finn found the mother of Bruno and Keisha and arrested her. The mom said she starved Keisha because she wouldn’t stop crying. Benson and Sonny told Rollins and Finn that Keisha had just passed away. Sonny and Benson talked to the boss at child protective services and she said she had visited two weeks prior to Keisha and Bruno’s house. The woman swore Keisha looked healthy two weeks ago. Benson said they would need the laptop computer of the case worker, Keith, that was assigned to Keisha and Bruno. Reports were backdated by the case worker after Keisha was checked in on.
Benson said child protective services was responsible for Keisha’s death. The ADA for SVU did a press conference regarding Keisha’s death and said her mother had been charged with homicide. He said Keith’s fraud was covered up by his boss. Both Keith and his boss were arrested. The judge set a $50,000 bail for Keith.
Keisha’s mother was in the hospital and begged to be allowed to go to Keisha’s funeral. She said she hadn’t seen her case worker in months before Keisha died. Keith and his lawyer talked to Sonny and the ADA.
The team found out other case workers with child protective services had falsified paper work from home visits. Sonny went to talk to Keith at his request. Keith told the ADA his boss told him he didn’t have to make all his home visits as long as there was a record that he had made those visits.
In court the ADA showed the jury pictures of Keisha. He then said NYPD detectives found Keisha locked in a cage in her mother’s house. The mother’s lawyer said Keith was responsible for her death. He said his client;s only failure was trusting the case worker that failed them. The doctor that treated Keisha testified that the condition Keisha was in could have happened within a few weeks. Keith testified and said that he made the wrong choice when handling Keisha’s case. Keith said he followed orders because he wanted to keep his job.
Bruno was brought to the jail so his mother could see him. In court Keith’s boss said she didn’t know how bad things were for Keisha and she wished Keith had come to her sooner. The ADA confronted Keith’s boss on giving him more cases than she ever had in the past. She said she asked Keith to meet with her when he fell behind in filing his paperwork from home visits. She said God himself could not do her job and that the ADA wouldn’t last an hour in her world. She also said everyone wanted to make her the scapegoat. They determined she had had a breakdown in court and she was removed from the trial.
The Chief of Police told Benson her reform of child services allowed her to have a new Sergeant at the station. The Chief said his son would be the Sergeant.