After-Take: CHICAGO PD “In a Duffel Bag”
Name of the Episode: “In a Duffel Bag”
Beware – spoilers!
While playing cards with his friends, Voight hears his son Justin was in town. He was under the impression Justin would be in town later. Although he is caught off guard, he puts his attention to a call about a suspicious package at the lakefront. The investigating officers are in need of a sergeant on scene before making any more calls. They don’t call the bomb squad; instead, Voight opens the duffel bag. Inside, he sees a newborn baby, frozen. The paramedics say the baby girl is at negative zero, but still needs to be taken to the hospital to pronounce the death officially. In the bag, they also found rocks; disturbing because the murderer wanted the bag to sink in the lake. Preliminary reports say the bag was dropped around 2am. Lindsay asks Voight if he would prefer to take the case to city homicide, but he declines. He wants to find the person responsible for this situation. The team is visibly shaken by this case, Voight doesn’t want to have the baby’s photo displayed in the room.
There is no identity for the baby, but the duffel bag was given out as a radio station promotion from a sports shop. Everyone takes a different section of security to find someone with the bag. Pajamas and blanket found on the scene were also mass produced, nothing unique about the pieces. Roman and Burgess go to Med to collect the baby’s body. However, Natalie has the baby doe currently in a trauma room. The nurses were able to warm up the baby, but many machines are doing lots of work. Once the baby fully warms to normal temperatures, the doctors will know what condition the baby is in. Sharon goes to Voight with blood panels and results; the baby has anemia and sickle cell disease. This is good news, one of the parents would also have these conditions and would be an ongoing treatment.
Ruzek gets a hit from the sickle cell research. His name is Trey Butler and he lives in Rockford. Al and Ruzek go to his home to see if he can give any information. Trey denies any knowledge about the baby. He agrees to go into the station for a DNA test so he can clear his name. After the test is done, it’s revealed he is the father of the baby doe. He still insists he does not have a baby. He comes to Chicago for his monthly treatments and says anyone he’s been with would have come to him if she was pregnant. Voight is angry and wants answers; he begins to choke Trey violently for a name. Voight asks whom Trey was with in July. Trey panics and realizes he had a hook up with a random girl at a blues festival last July. He thinks her name might be Tanna Miller, or something close.
There’s a thought she might have been under the age of 21 at the time. Al says he can call a friend about finding a high school dropout due to a pregnancy. He goes to the office and his friend pulls up a couple of potential mothers to the baby doe. He finds a girl named Tanna Myers who attended Susan B. Anthony High School. She missed a substantial days of school and the mascot is a hawk. Another detail Trey provided matches up; she turned 18 a week before the search. Voight shows a line up of school photos to Trey. He identifies Tanna as the girl he hooked up with. Halstead and Lindsay are tasked to find her parents and find out if they know anything about the baby. Tanna’s mother is very defensive about the accusations being made.
Tanna is conveniently out of the country and her mother claims she is a minor. Lindsay counteracts that statement by saying the school record shows she is already 18. Tanna’s father visibly wants to say what’s going on, but Debra is insistent to call the lawyer. Lindsay tries to give details about how the baby is fighting for her life and they are responsible for hiding valuable information from the police. Ben sneaks out the back door of the home and wishes to speak in private.
He informs Lindsay and Halstead that Tanna gave birth to the baby, but has nothing to do with the baby’s misfortune. They found a midwife who knew a family wanting another baby. He doesn’t know the name of the family. They felt it would be better if the process worked like a “closed adoption.” Tanna would drop out of school and the baby could have a better life. He discloses the name of the midwife, Mariella Hernandez. Roman and Burgess are standing guard in front of the baby’s trauma room and Natalie invites them in. The baby’s heart is beating successfully on her own, the baby has a greater chance of living. Antonio is searching hospitals were the midwife might deliver, while Mouse is searching her financials.
Two weeks ago, she had a cash deposit of $20,000. Seems she received the money after she delivered Tanna’s baby. She was hesitant about taking the money at first because she wanted to do everything legally. However, Debra threatened to deport Mariella if she didn’t take care of their needs. Al asks for the other family’s information and Mariella complies. The squad shows up at the home of Thomas Flynn with a warrant to search the premises. Thomas is surprised and his wife is wondering what is happening. He says Mariella did not give them the baby they were promised. She said the other family had changed their mind once the baby was delivered. The couple’s son, Max also confirms there was never a baby at the house. Back at the hospital, baby doe loses her heartbeat.
Natalie and the other nurses try desperately to save her. For the moment, the baby is stable; all anyone can do is pray and wait. At the station, everyone is wondering if the Flynn’s were able to keep the baby a secret. Their lives will be under a microscope to find any leads. Tanna’s parents are once again being interviewed, but their lawyer is present for the meeting. Debra has a new side to her story: she insists Mariella was the one blackmailing them for money. She asked to be paid $10,000 for Tanna’s delivery and silence in the matter. She also asked for $10,000 more so the adoptive family would also keep quiet. In the interrogation room, Mariella insists she did not keep the baby for two weeks.
She says the baby clothing and food at her apartment is for mother’s coming for post-natal care. Lindsay interrupts the conversation, Tanna is downstairs and ready for questioning. Tanna says her mother gave her no choice; she must give up the baby or Tanna would be disowned. Tanna insists Mariella was very nice to her, and she knows nothing about the other family. Upstairs, Lindsay is reeling from the case; she sits down to talk with Voight. He talks about a memory with his wife Camilla.
When his son Justin was born, he was also a twin. However, the second baby was stillborn; Lindsay never knew about this story. Voight has regrets about not giving the baby a proper burial. The little baby, was a girl. Lindsay sees why Voight is so invested in solving this case. As he finishes the story, Ruzek comes in with new information: Thomas Flynn had a business go belly up, and one of their connections was the sports shop that contracted the duffel bags. The squad rolls into the Flynn household and they see the family is on the run. They have at least an hour head start, but Mouse flags all credit cards and put an alert for them. Patrol caught the Flynn’s vehicle going northbound on the freeway, and the team gets a visual confirmation at a gas station. Cars roll into the station and block the Flynn’s vehicle. As everyone is taken into custody, Thomas yells his confession.
At the station, Thomas and his wife give full confessions to the incident. Thomas had too much to drink, him and Janet had been arguing that night. Max wanted to see the lunar eclipse, he is obsessed with everything outer space. However, the eclipse wouldn’t start until 2am and Janet didn’t want Max up that late. Janet went to bed first, and Thomas woke Max up at 1:30 but accidently woke up the baby as well.
He took the baby outside with them to see the eclipse. Thomas passed out and left Max with a blanket. Max woke up at 6am, and said he couldn’t wake up the baby. Thomas panicked, that’s his excuse. The whole situation is sticky. In the end, Thomas will go to prison, Mariella will be deported and Debra will be arrested for paying to get rid of her grandbaby.
While Ruzek is talking with Max, Max says he wanted the baby to see the eclipse with him. Ruzek asks if he meant his dad was with him too. Max says no, he took the baby outside by himself. With the new information, Voight goes back to the interrogation room to see Thomas. Voight ensures Thomas that Max will not go away for his horrible accident. The state’s attorney will see Max needs some help, but he also needs his father. Thomas recounts the story, they didn’t know Max took the baby outside. They never meant to hurt her; Voight understands because he’s also a father.
At the end of the episode, Debra and Ben are enjoying a lovely meal at a fancy restaurant. Until Lindsay and Halstead march in to arrest Debra. She cannot believe the charges and Ben says he will call the lawyer; to which Halstead simply suggests, “run for your life man.” Couldn’t have said it better. At the hospital, Natalie informs everyone the baby is remarkably healthy. She will have a long road of recovery, but she is no doubt a fighter. Tanna is the first one to be at the baby’s bedside. Since Tanna never signed away any of her parental rights, she has a chance to keep the baby. Looks like this story gets a happy ending after all. Voight enjoys a dinner with his daughter in law and asks about Justin’s visit. She said Justin had a last minute training day and he wanted to visit with some friends.
In the end, Voight just wanted to know Justin is doing fine. Voight cares for his grandson and sees everything he needs is right in front of him. At Molly’s, Natalie admits this is one of the best days as a doctor. She toasts with Roman and Burgess to “hold them close, and love hard”. With that, Roman and Burgess go back to her apartment and make things official between them. Goodbye Burzek and hello Romess! (Or whatever name fans come up with) [AMRIE note: I am NOT okay with this!! I love Ruzek so much….]
Next week: A wrongful shooting, an officer down, the intelligence group goes to court to see justice. Stay tuned next week for another after take!