IN TREATMENT (#CI8012)
EPISODE PREMIERE: May 10, 2009
Nichols and Wheeler step into the world of high finance to catch an unlikely killer. SYNOPSIS:
Wall Street hustler ARCHIE BEULISS, is a captain of the financial industry, leading Beuliss Securities, one of the nations most successful hedge funds. He is the honorary speaker at a gala dinner when the place erupts amid news reports that Beuliss Securities is under investigation by the SEC for fraud. The stock’s value begins to plummet immediately. When Beuliss Securities FEO, FRANK HATCHER, is found stabbed in the men’s room, Nichols and Wheeler step into the world of high finance to catch an unlikely killer.
Nichols and Wheeler consider that an angry investor may have killed Hatcher, but Archie insists that his company is sound. He tells of a disgruntled former employee, RICHARD KRAMER, who was fired after accusing Hatcher of financial irregularities.
The detectives pay Kramer a visit and learn that the company in engaged in what appears to be an elaborate ponzi scheme. Kramer, suspecting Hatcher, blew the whistle and got fired for his efforts.
Following up on this tip, the detectives speak with a representative at the Attorney General’s Office. Nichols deduces that Frank Hatcher wasn’t the target of the SEC’s investigation, but the source of it. Hatcher was informing the SEC about Archie’s fraudulent activities, swindling his investors.
Nichols and Wheeler arrive at Beuliss Securities to confront Archie, but learn that Archie has been admitted to a psychological rehabilitation center and cannot be contacted, by doctor’s orders.
DR. ERNST, therapist to the ultra-wealthy, refuses to grant access to Archie, claiming he’s under too much psychological distress. Nichols says Archie is hiding out from the SEC and Ernst is complicit in allowing him to evade a federal investigation. In return, Ernst tells Nichols he has authority issues and could benefit from therapy.
Wheeler confirms everyone’s suspicions when she admits that she’s pregnant. With the baby’s father in jail, she’s got a tough road ahead, but will be able to carry out her responsibilities as a detective.
Nichols takes a cue from Ernst and shows up for Ernst’s next group therapy session – the same group Archie participates in. Before Ernst can get rid of him, Nichols stirs up the group enough to elicit an outburst from RON HEMMINGS, who blames Archie for losing his family’s fortune.
Shortly after, Elaine (Archie’s wife) consoles Hemmings and assures him that his investment in Archie’s company is sound. It also becomes clear they have been having an affair.
Later, the detectives visit Ron Hemmings and find he has made peace with the financial catastrophe wrought by Archie and takes full responsibility for a bad investment. His emotional outburst was confined to the therapy session, he says.
The investigation turns to Elaine and she quickly admits to having an affair with Ron Hemmings. She explains that Hemmings anger at Archie really stems from the fact that she recently cut things off.
In a therapy session with Ernst, Elaine explains that she talked to Ron and tried to convince him to remain calm about his investments, but she’s not sure whether she got through to him. She also says she told the cops that Hemmings outburst at Archie was really about the broken-off affair, but she’s not sure they believed her.
Indeed, the detectives aren’t sure what to believe. When they return to Hemmings’ place to question him, they find him dead. He committed suicide in the bathtub.
Nichols and Wheeler confront Ernst about Hemmings’ suicide. Ernst explains that wealthy individuals find their identities in their financial success and when their portfolios collapse, so do they. Nichols observes that working with wealthy individuals is Ernst’s niche. The helicopter rides to the Hamptons are a nice perk. Ernst admits that he helps them to have successful relationships, be happy and fulfilled, make another billion dollars. Nichols counters that happiness and making a billion dollars are supposed to be different things.
Research into Ernst uncovers that nearly all of his patients have invested with Archie - Hemmings had invested a billion. A tox screen of Ron Hemmings comes back from the lab telling he had taken psychotropic drugs that are contraindicated.
In the final scene of the show, Nichols and Wheeler disrupt Ernst’s group therapy session to find that all of the participants had invested with Beuliss Securities on Ernst’s advice. Archie has tacitly approved of Ernst drumming up money for his flagging company, but when Ernst starts talking about the company as if it’s his own, it’s clear the psychiatrist has crossed some identity boundary of his own. Nichols tells that Ernst masterminded Hemmings’ suicide by prescribing a cocktail of self-destruction. He murdered Hatcher in cold blood to protect Beuliss Securities, the company he had come to feel as his own, from the SEC.