tv WBTV Sunday News 11pm CBS March 20, 2016 11:00pm-11:35pm EDT
mr. baxter. you'll be pleased to hear we've identified the midnight ranger. turns out he was in your check register all along. please have a seat. um... mike was my friend. yesterday, you and mr. eichorn made him sound like an enemy. he was superlative's enemy, not mine. mike approached me a little over two years ago and asked my permission to wear the midnight ranger costume to... fight crime. 'cause that's what you do when you want to assume the mantle of a copyrighted superhero, you go to the editor of that hero's comic book? well, i'm not just the editor. my grandfather was morty stiller. morty stiller, the creator of the midnight ranger? yeah. here was a guy who was everything my grandfather wanted the midnight ranger to be, you know? he was, um, brave and honorable and decent. someone who just wanted to make the world better.
romantic? (sighs): yeah, i guess. my grandfather would have loved it. a real midnight ranger helping real people. so, i... i gave him my blessing. so this was written less than a week ago. right, well, the first time we met, i told him i had one condition-- that he needed to take steps to protect himself. so i gave him some money to buy body armor. after that, i'd send him a little something whenever i could, you know, just to keep him safe. look, i... really wanted to tell you guys about this yesterday, but you have to understand, if sandy finds out that i did this... you'll lose your job? well, more than that. working here at superlative, it's, like, my last connection to this character. and my grandfather. hey, if it'll help, i will give you access to my e-mail accounts. yes.
all of my correspondence with mike, and you'll see. he was my friend. hey. hey. thanks. so, scale of one to ten, how crazy? not crazy. i mean, not exactly. i mean, everything was very organized. he kept notes like a cop would. you said he worked as a security guard? part-time-- he was going to school to become a social worker. guess do-gooding at night wasn't enough for the guy. (sighs) is that from the lab? yeah, the trace evidence unit i.d.'d a piece of fabric found at the scene as a flap torn from a pouch on a tactical belt. makes sense-- the victim was wearing one. he was, but his belt was intact. you think the killer was wearing a tactical belt, too? there was a struggle before mike stratton was shot. maybe he tore that off.
you two need to see. gregson: this happened in greenpoint just a couple of hours ago. this guy stole a lady's purse, and this guy chased him down and got it back. "the midnight ranger lives." eh. obviously, some new nut-job just got himself a costume and decided to pick up where mike stratton left off. who you calling? sherlock. i think i might know who the new midnight ranger is. and if i'm right... he might have killed the old one. how'd you find me? i used everything i know about you to find out the one thing i didn't.
why are you here? my partner and i are investigating the possibility that mike stratton was murdered by a fellow superhero. what? it seems the killer left a piece of a tactical belt at the scene. would it surprise you to know that it's the same brand of belt that you wear as the standard-bearer? lots of heroes have that belt. well, let's say that's true. how many do you suppose want to be the new midnight ranger? i have to admit, ben, looks good on you. i'm lucky to get through a shift without a disaster. my bargain detergent, it couldn't keep up. so i switched to tide pods. they're super concentrated... so i get a better clean. voted 2016 product of the year.
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fleas and ticks for 8 continuous months. its innovative delivery system offers effective flea and tick protection... in an easy-to-use, non-greasy collar. seresto . designed to perform for 8 months. from bayer. i was trying to honor mike. i wanted to show the person who killed him that the midnight ranger will never die. not him, not the things he stands for. bell: it's just funny how you had your own midnight ranger costume all ready to go. i didn't have it "ready to go." i had this costume for years. i bought it to go to a comic book convention. i have costumes of all my favorite heroes. the midnight ranger's your absolute favorite, is he not? the first thing i noticed at the print shop was your name. ben garrett. it reminded me of, uh, benji garrett. a frequent contributor to the letters column
my partner's suspicion that you killed mike stratton suddenly made a little more sense. what are you talking about? benji mostly heaped praise on the comic, but then in 2007, the midnight ranger was revamped. he became, uh, more brooding, more bloodthirsty. certain elements of his backstory, his origin story, were-- i believe the term is-- retconned. watson: benji didn't like the changes. his letters to superlative became more and more impassioned, until he finally told them that he was never gonna buy another one of their comics. what they did was wrong. someone had to tell them so. bell: maybe you didn't like what mike was doing with the midnight ranger. maybe you decided to tell him so. watson: can you tell us your whereabouts between 10:00 p.m. and midnight two nights ago? i was on patrol. did anyone see you? (sighs) if i killed mike, why would i have come to you the other night? why would i tell you who he was, where he lived? watson: because you knew
you wanted to present yourself as a friend. i was a friend! i... a year ago, i was... different... than i am now. i... didn't like myself. i didn't like the world i lived in. the news was on. a girl had been assaulted in greenpoint. the police only had sketches, and then all of a sudden, i mean, right there on my screen... is the midnight ranger. they were talking to him because he was putting up flyers. they thought it was funny, but if they had just listened... i looked at him and i thought, why can't i try to be like that? in the end, i got a message to him. i said...
"so be a hero," he said. i couldn't have hurt mike. he saved my life. i'll apply for a warrant to search his apartment, see if we can find a tactical belt with a flap torn off. what'd you think? i think i liked him as a suspect a lot more five minutes ago. did you identify any other suspects from mike stratton's war journals? um, there was one name that popped up in more recent entries-- a renny molina. he's a drug dealer that set up shop in greenpoint park a few months ago. mike was hassling him on a regular basis, interfering with drug deals.
there was an entry from last week that said things finally got physical between them. physical how? it wasn't clear. he didn't document his failures with as much detail as his victories. first thing tomorrow, we'll pay mr. molina a visit. actually, i can't. i have an appointment with your father. he sent over some materials, i want to return them in person. you decided to heed my advice. we've got enough going on; he can find his mole himself. (sighs) (sniffs) it's dangerous counting your money in this park. hear there are drug dealers about. do tell. mr. molina, i, uh... i work with the police. the midnight ranger was something of a... tormentor to you. interfering with your business, even called the police on a few occasions, causing you to run away. the last time he came here, he was the one who ran away, okay? yeah.
'cause he wrote about it. he said there was a confrontation, which resulted in the loss of a piece of equipment. i'm thinking perhaps you stole his belt. his belt? yeah. well, there was a piece of one found at the scene of his murder. maybe you stole his, he replaced it, and then, for some reason, you had the original on you the night you shot him. (chuckles): you're crazy, man. i got nothing to say to you. hello? captain? yeah. yeah, i found him. yeah. no, he doesn't want to cooperate. i know. yeah. at the precinct? yeah. okay. well, he says it's going to take at least ten men. hey. hang on. what? now he's saying, "why don't you come here yourself?" hey, man. yeah. hold on. yeah, hold on, i'm gonna have to call you back. this is the equipment i took. fool dropped it after i popped him right here. and i warned him, yo. i told him to get out of my face, but he wouldn't listen. no.
as, you know, a trophy. it's a burner. got some access code, man, so you can't... yeah. how'd you do that? so, i suppose you are gonna tell me that you were here the night of the murder, aren't you? actually, i won't, 'cause i wasn't. i was in the e.r. on chambers street with my girl and her kid. she thought he got into my stash, eaten something he shouldn't have. turned out to be nothing, but we were there all night. well, this has been very helpful. i think i know who i need to speak with next. yo, but-but what about with the captain, all that stuff? is that for real? if i were you, i'd leave here, don't come back. i'm gonna keep this. thank you. morland: i confess, i didn't expect to hear back from you so soon. did you review the materials i sent? i did. every report, every file, every e-mail. and? first, i'd like to talk to you about ruslan krasnov.
i didn't realize you were aware of mr. krasnov. i wasn't, not until yesterday. so, two years ago, he was the one who actually pulled the trigger, right? he killed sabine? if my son is to be believed, yes. according to sherlock, you paid someone to break him out of a russian prison, presumably to torture him, make him give you the name of the person who hired him. nonsense. so he's wrong? you had nothing to do with krasnov escaping? i did not. your son thinks we should stay away from you. that you put everyone around you in danger. respectfully, joan, i didn't hire you to lecture me on things that don't concern you. actually, you didn't hire me.
to a cause that you don't give a damn about because you thought i would be indebted to you. we deserve to know-- are you starting a war with someone? were my negotiations with the colombians undermined by someone in my company or weren't they? no. there's no mole here. at least, there's nothing in the material that you gave me that points to one. as far as i could tell, you were just outmaneuvered. that can happen, you know. you can lose. sherlock holmes, meet sergeant black from the 7-4. nice to meet you. hey, um... this is the number of your desk phone, correct? yeah, yeah. why? uh, you hear about the midnight ranger murder? yeah, the guy in the cape. heard he got shot the other night. that was his phone.
to street crimes he couldn't handle alone. yeah, yeah. if you look at the log here, there are exactly 37 calls to the police, one from them. specifically from you. what? bell: yeah, this would've been a week ago today, little after 11:00 p.m. i remember now. the green goblin was trying to help skeletor bust out of his cell. i couldn't get the midnight signal up, so i just, i called the ranger direct. you already confirmed this is your number. is this guy for real? we just want to know if you knew him. you know, he kept a low profile, so anyone who can share information with us... isn't in this room. look, excuse me. i got some real work to do. oh, well, perhaps you'd like us to assume that you were sharing information with him. i beg your pardon? you're a sergeant, you're often desk-bound. difficult to effect any real change, though not for the midnight ranger. perhaps you thought an alliance with him was an attractive idea. look, no one is accusing you of anything, okay? we just want to know if you knew mike stratton.
no, no. but i know that name. about a week ago, they brought a guy in, 10:30 at night, passed out behind the wheel of his car. it was parked, but it was still a dwi. he used my phone to call his friend for bail, and his friend's name was stratton. you remember the name of the guy who got collared? uh, baxter. baxter something. al baxter? yeah. you should talk to him. we did, twice. you ask him about his gun? we weren't aware he owned one. he had a permit to carry a .45 right in his wallet. what kind of gun was used in the homicide? a .45. (elevator bell dings) i heard about the second midnight ranger a little while ago. please tell me there's not a third. actually, mr. eichorn, we're here to speak with al baxter. is he around? no, he's... working from home. you hesitated. why? "working from home" is usually code for "too hungover to come into the office."
god hates the midnight ranger. i don't know why. he just does. so the fact that a trusted employee shot a man dressed up as the midnight ranger doesn't seem strange to you? why is that? because al baxter is the angriest guy i know. i didn't hire him by choice. it was the publisher's idea. she thought it would be fun bringing in the grandson of the ranger's creator to edit the ranger comic. course, she didn't have to work with him every day. she didn't have to put up with his crap. define "crap." back in the '40s, superlative basically screwed morty stiller out of his rights to the character. that's how the companies did business in those days, but baxter never shut up about it. always complaining about how rich he and his family should be, how the rest of us wouldn't even be here without his granddad. no one in the bullpen could stand him. well, we found multiple indications that mike stratton could stand him, and the two of them were, in fact, good friends.
that the guy was causing headaches for the company. then why shoot him? maybe he wanted to screw up the midnight ranger movie deal. a week ago, baxter found out that everyone from editorial was having dinner with the studio execs. everyone except him. so he wasn't invited? last thing we needed was him crying into his coffee about how he should be getting his cut. he threw a tantrum. he stormed out of here. probably went straight to a bar. bell: was this, by any chance, the night of the 13th? sounds right. same night he got that dwi. eichorn: the point is, the stratton kid, the real ranger, he got killed a stone's throw from the restaurant. what restaurant? the one we took the movie guys to. zona rosa. i didn't realize how close we were until i saw it in the paper the other day. so you're saying the dinner took place the same night mike stratton was killed? same night. and less than 500 feet away. so what are the chances that, uh, mr. baxter comes in today, despite his hangover?
but he might still come in? sure. why? (fire alarm blaring) what the hell did you do that for? quickest way to evacuate your offices and draw the authorities to the building. if mr. baxter decides to come to work today, we don't want you and your staff being here. why not? i don't think he planned to kill mike stratton the other night. i think he planned to kill everyone except for mike stratton. in life there are things you wanna touch and some you just don't. the kohler touchless toilet.
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mr. baxter, have a seat. (clears throat) your captain called me here. they said that they identified a suspect in mike's murder-- someone i may or may not recognize. so my colleague, detective bell, just found a virtual arsenal in the basement of your home. wh-what are you...? wait, is this a trick? did you bring me here so that you could search my place? why? (chuckles) yeah, i got some guns. so what? they're all registered. i ask you, is there anything more quintessentially american than being gunned down in a place that you're meant to feel safe? sometimes i think it should be on u.s. currency. most of your ilk do themselves in. of course, that is after the deed has been done. but you were stopped before you could even get started, weren't you? foiled by a caped crusader. i don't know what you're talking about.
that's not in question. and at some point, perhaps whilst drunk, you made the depths of your hatred for superlative comics frighteningly and abundantly clear. i'm not sure whether you told him that you intended to shoot as many of your coworkers as you possibly could, but you did give him cause for concern. he knew about the dinner you had been excluded from. he went there to make sure you didn't do anything stupid. so imagine his horror when you arrive armed to the teeth. (sighs) you got quite an imagination; you should work in comics. this was found near his body. at first, we thought it was torn from the belt of another hero. but it wasn't. tactical belts aren't made for do-gooding, they're made for people with guns. they're meant to carry extra ammunition. before you shot mike, there was a struggle, and he ripped this from your belt. it was a coincidence, an armored man being shot by armor-piercing bullets. they weren't meant for him.
at superlative comics. you wanted to be able to shoot through furniture, you wanted to be able to shoot through other people, through anything and everything that stood between you and them. i think you've told me precisely two things that were true. one, that you admired and appreciated mike's dedication to the midnight ranger's ideals, and secondly, that mike was your friend. so why don't you do the right thing now. why don't you make it clear that your friend didn't die a silly man in a silly costume. hmm? and make it clear that he died a hero. i... (sobs) i never shot anybody before. (sniffles) i saw mike laying there,
what's all that? it's a little light reading for our friend ben garrett, aka benji garrett, aka the standard-bearer, aka the new midnight ranger. i e-mailed him about the resolution of our case. despite mike stratton's murder, he's still intent on remaining a hero. and you thought since you can't change his mind... i would loan him some materials that might hone his observational skills, help him know a threat when he sees one. that's sweet. makes me want to buy you a cape. all right, i'm going out for a little while. being fitted for your own costume? i'm having dinner with a friend. see you later. watson: emil kurtz? do i know you? we have a friend in common: morland holmes. oh. well, nice to meet you. morland asked me to find a mole in his office.
in other words, he asked me to find you. what? you collect jazz records. a week before morland's deal fell apart, you sent a few very long e-mails to someone named vinylvenue43. he was offering to sell you some rare albums; you wanted a better deal. do you know what a vigen re cipher is? it's a form of encryption that allows a person to hide messages inside regular texts. you weren't looking to buy any records. you were sharing information with the competition. what do you want? same thing that vinylvenue43 did. a mole inside morland holmes' office. captioning sponsored by cbs
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