Criminal Minds -- To Kill A Mocking Bird
The unkindest cut of all
The episode started out with JJ wanting Cruz to tell the team the truth about them, because she was afraid they thought they were having an affair, but he said no can do. Cruz also is involved with this case that happens in their own backyard and someone else's.
At the heart of this case is the plot from to Kill A Mocking Bird where a white woman falsely accuses a black man of rape. Only in this case there's no court case, but swift justice by some Klan-like youths.
The nightmare begins for Charles Johnson as a teenager when a white teenage girl named Audrey is late for curfew so she lies that Charles raped her. She could have picked a white boy, but she obvious picked a black boy believing everyone would believe her and wouldn't believe him. Charles is walking down the street when a bunch of good old boys grab him up and take him off with them. They string Charles up and castrate him. When Audrey dies many years later she writes a letter saying she's sorry she lied. Charles wasn't impressed by it and neither was I. Yeah, that's right, sweetie, confess when you die so you don't have to pay any consequences for your actions. Her little confession letter triggers Charles to kill a string of people connected to what happened to him. I kind of hope she's burning in hell somewhere as even though Charles was the one who killed the people, her dirty little lie and for such a pathetic reason as not wanting to get in trouble for coming home late cause everything that happened afterwards.
Anyway, fast forward to the present time and a broken water pipe reveals two dead skeletons buried in the Johnson backyard and mother, father and son are taken into BAU Headquarters as the team tries to find out who did it.
At first the times suspects Lyle and they send in Hotch to interrogate him. When he heard the FBI was at his house he took off running, and they were convinced it was because he'd buried the bodies in his backyard. Lyle's got a lot of attitude towards the man. It doesn't help that one of the female skeletons is identified and she was a previous girlfriend of Lyle's. However, when Lyle finds out her genitals were mutilated and buried in his backyard he loses his tude and even confesses to the crime. However, Hotch no longer believes it was him. Especially when two more skeletons are unearthed, and this time they're men with their genitals mutilated who were buried there thirty-five years ago when Lyle was only five.
They turn their attention on to Charles and Rossi tries to get the truth out of Charles. Seems Lyle's girlfriend was related to one of the men who mutilated him so he visited the sins of the father on to the daughter. The two men who he also killed were also men who took part in mutating him.
To get Charles to open up to him, Rossi reveals a racial event from his past. When he was a kid so he wouldn't be picked in he locked a black boy in a school locked and peed on him because the school bullies told him to. The entire team hears this, but Morgan says Rossi was only a kid and to stop blaming himself. Rossi also reveals his second wife was a black woman.
It's only when they figure out Lyle isn't really Charles' son that Charles agrees to make a full confession if the truth is kept from Lyle. He explains when those white boys strung him up and mutilated him hatred was bred in him. But it seems like while the hatred was festering inside him, he didn't do anything. It was the Teen Queen's little, "I'm sorry I lied that you raped me so I wouldn't get in trouble for being late," letter that set him off. So, once again the Teen Queen puts something in motion with her selfishness.
And it was pure selfishness. She didn't say anything until she was going to die. So she lived with it all those years. Then she wants to die with a clear conscience so she has the nerve to write to the guy she falsely accused. Just like the original lie, telling the truth was all about her.
Lying someone raped you just so you won't get grounded for being ten minutes late takes a special kind of person. That's an awful big thing to lie about for something so little and paltry as being late getting home. Then living with what you did all those years. Well, she should have taken her dirty little secret to the grave with her instead of trying to clear his conscience when she wouldn't have to face any consequences and bringing it all back for Charles Johnson for what he suffered because of her lies.
This is the second unsub I felt sorry for. In a way I don't even blame him for his actions. I blame the Teen Queen who started this whole thing not once but twice. And both times she lied and told the truth was all about herself. Did she really think Charles Johnson was going to feel good all because she deigned to finally tell the truth when it no longer mattered? I doubt she even gave the man she wronged a second thought. How unburying the horrible thing that was done to him as a teen would affect him. How making him remember it all over again would rake up all that anger might cause him to act out. She probably never even saw him as a real person, just someone she could use to get herself out of trouble. See, it was all about making herself feel better. There's not a place hot enough in hell for this woman.
See, sweetie, just because you unburdened yourself when you wouldn't have to face up to what you did didn't guarantee you a place in heaven. It actually condemned you into a place in hell. Maybe in death you'll actually have to pay for the actions you got away with without paying for in life. If she wanted to save herself from purgatory she needed to actually admit what she did and face the consequences for her actions.