Can a long-unsolved case still have a positive outcome?
Danny (Donnie Wahlberg) got an answer in "Open Secrets," Friday's (Feb. 28) episode of CBS' "Blue Bloods" written by executive producer Ian Biederman and directed by TV veteran Eric Laneuville.
Danny and Maria (Marisa Ramirez) were called to a school from which a youngster named Jenna had disappeared, a crossing guard telling them she'd seen the girl atypically get into a car rather than walk home. The situation brought back troubling memories for Danny, who'd failed to locate a missing girl named Allie years earlier and still was visited regularly by her father Joseph (guest star Patrick Breen), who continued to maintain hope she'd be found.
Erin (Bridget Moynahan) was handling the potential prosecution of Diana Del Rio (guest star Caroline Strong), who claimed she had a bipolar condition that caused her to fatally run over her building's superintendent. The defendant's lawyer, real-life attorney Bruce Cutler (again guest-starring as himself), challenged Erin to disprove the illness ... which she admitted would be "very difficult." He retorted, "Exactly. That's why they pay me the big bucks."
That didn't keep her from calling in a psychiatric expert, Dr. Michael Raskins (guest star Greg Germann), who had assisted the District Attorney's office on many occasions. Confident he could deal with whatever the defense threw at him, he told Erin, "I've never let this office down. I don't intend to start now."
Frank (Tom Selleck) had an international dilemma on his hands after a detective in the International Liaison Program he oversaw was arrested in England for allegedly tampering with evidence in a terrorist bombing. That put the program in the crosshairs of Inspector General Kelly Peterson (recurring guest star Bebe Neuwirth), who was concerned about the secrecy it operated under.
When the missing Jenna's parents denied she'd ever go off with a driver she didn't know, Danny cautioned them, "There's a lot of bad people out there." The girl's father Mark (guest star Quincy Dunn-Baker) actually turned out to be her stepfather, arrested before for domestic violence against his first wife. Ultimately, the detectives' suspicions of his taking Jenna proved to be unfounded.
On the witness stand, Dr. Raskins was grilled by Cutler about Del Rio's medical file -- which Raskins confessed he only had read partially, making his "expert" testimony suspect and angering Erin, who accused him of putting his ego ahead of doing his job.
Later, Erin came home to a surprised Nicky (Sami Gayle), who had a boy named Ben (guest star Jimmy Brewer) in her room ... and shoes hastily put back on suggested they'd been doing more than studying, to Erin's apparent worry.
"You've never mentioned him before," she said to a somewhat secretive Nicky, who responded, "I'm sure you've got a lot of friends you've never mentioned to me, right?"
Back at the school, Danny and Maria questioned friendly custodian Roseanne Galecki (guest star Jayne Houdyshell), who was familiar with Jenna's participation in art fairs. The woman claimed to be artistic herself when Maria noticed floral decorations on her cart, and Mrs. Galecki gave her one as a gift.
At the weekly Reagan family dinner, Danny voiced second thoughts about letting Sean (Andrew Terraciano) take a planned trip with a friend and his father. Sean immediately deduced it was because of the ongoing search for Jenna, and Nicky asked, "At some point, shouldn't people have control over how they live their lives?" -- a question clearly aimed at Erin.
With the possibility of a subpoena and potential arrest hanging over him if he didn't disclose details of how the International Liaison Program operated, Frank had a chat outside Lincoln Center with Kelly. She warned him he could take the secrecy only so far before others wondered if he was hiding something.
Finally, at his office, Frank agreed to regular monthly meetings about the ILP -- but only with Kelly, in an effort to keep the information as confidential as possible. "Would you really have put me in jail?," he asked her. 'Yes," she confirmed. "But with a heavy heart."
Erin told Dr. Raskins she'd had other psychiatrists examine defendant Del Rio, and they came up with conclusions "directly contradicting your testimony." She then told him she'd make his unreliability known around the D.A.'s office, and she successfully lobbied to have the woman found not guilty by reason of insanity and placed in psychiatric care.
Another visit by Ben to Nicky ended in a goodnight kiss, in view of Erin. Nicky said they'd talked about becoming physically intimate, to which Erin noted, "I'm sorry to disappoint you, but I'm not going to yell and scream." And she added she would keep faith in Nicky's "good judgment," but that house boundaries also had to be observed.
Nicky agreed, then asked if Erin ever had that conversation with her own mother. Yes, Erin said, "the day before I married your father. And I didn't have the heart to tell her she was a little late." And both women laughed.
Danny and Maria discovered both of the missing girls had entered art fairs, and researching the submissions, the detectives found one of Jenna's pieces was an exact match for the decoration Mrs. Galecki had given Maria. Next stop: The Galecki home.
Though Mrs. Galecki tried to keep them out, the threat of a search warrant persuaded her to let them into the darkened home. Curious about a locked basement door, Danny called out to see if anyone was downstairs ... and a child's voice responded, "Help me! Please!"
Danny broke open the door and, with gun drawn, descended the stairs to find Jenna (guest star Gabriella Palminteri, daughter of earlier "Blue Bloods" guest Chazz Palminteri) being held by Mrs. Galecki's husband (guest star James Shanahan). As Danny moved in and arrested him, Jenna said, "Detective Reagan?" -- ready to reveal something more to him.
Summoned to meet Danny at the rescue site, Joseph was overwhelmed to find that his daughter Allie (guest star Leanne Agmon) also had been recovered. As the long-separated father and child embraced tightly, a teary-eyed Danny turned and walked back into the night.
Photo/Video credit: CBS