The team reopens the 1991 case of a young inner-city schoolteacher, originally thought to have been killed in a carjacking gone wrong, when her car keys are discovered in an old desk at the high school.
Rush reopens Laura McKinney’s 1991 murder case when a former student of hers, Darnell Brent (now a teacher) brings in a set of car keys he found in an old desk at the inner-city school where she taught.
Laura was an idealistic teacher who joined The Teach For America program right after college. She thought she could make a difference, but she ended up finding resistance at every turn. The students were difficult, but so were her fellow teachers. The initial theory was that she was the victim of a carjacking gone wrong, but since she left her car keys in the desk, it seems unlikely that’s where she was going.
She had difficulties with fellow teacher Margaret Trudlow, whom our detectives discover illegally bought the gun that killed Laura. Margaret says the gun was stolen before Laura’s murder and she never reported it because it was illegal.
She points the finger at a troubled student, Renaldo Ramos who gave Laura a difficult time. Renaldo didn’t kill Laura, but provides the key to solving the crime. Laura caught him with drugs and discovered he was buying them and delivering them to one of the teachers at the school, Kenneth "Kenny" Yates. When she confronts him, he ends up shooting her to death to protect himself.
- Kathryn Morris as Lilly Rush
- Danny Pino as Scotty Valens
- John Finn as John Stillman
- Jeremy Ratchford as Nick Vera
- Thom Barry as Will Jeffries
- Tracie Thoms as Kat Miller
- Cassidy Freeman as Laura McKinney
- Steven Anderson as David McKinney (2008)
- Patricia Belcher as Margaret Trudlow (2008)
- Starletta DuPois as Mrs. Harris
- David Julian Hirsh as Kenneth Yates (1991)
- Cleavon McClendon III as Darnell Brent (1991)
- Adetokumboh M'Cormack as Darnell Brent (2008)
- Alex Morris as Carlton Rawls (2008)
- Scott Paulin as Kenneth Yates (2008)
- Andres Saenz-Hudson as Renaldo Ramos (2008)
- Jon Budinoff as Renaldo Ramos (1991)
- Susan Beaubian as Margaret Trudlow (1991)
- Marlene Forte as Yesenia Ramos
- Chane't Johnson as Carla Difranco
- Terrell D. Lee as Carlton Rawls (1991)
- Sahra Mellesse as Student (1991)
- Ken Meseroll as David McKinney (1991)
- This episode uses elements from the novel Up the Down Staircase by Bel Kaufman, the 1995 film Dangerous Minds, and the 2007 film Freedom Writers.
- Jesus Jones "Right Here, Right Now"
- The Sundays "Here's Where The Story Ends"
- Pixies "Where Is My Mind"
- N.W.A. "Quiet On Tha Set"
- Seal "Crazy"
- Closing Song: R.E.M. "Half a World Away"