Law and Order
SVU, Episode 20.18
Production number: 20018
First aired: 21 March 2019
  th of 502 produced in SVU  
th of 502 released in SVU
  th of 1271 released in all  
Written By
Peter Blauner

Directed By
Christopher Misiano


When defense attorney Nikki Staines is raped after a police charity event, Benson reluctantly looks to her own for a suspect.


Benson is leaving the gym and bumps into Nikki Staines who is pleasantly surprised to see her. After exchanging greetings, Staines offers tickets to the charity ball but the latter declines because she has a ticket and will see her there.

At the party, Benson and Rollins complain about how the party is not very interesting before they notice Fin and Carisi sharing a talk with Staines. Soon Chief Dodds appears with a friend but everyone recognizes as Rob Miller one of the famed lawyers in the city.

The next day, a woman is found on a stoop behaving groggy. Police are brought in, before Fin and Rollins appear on the scene. The officers informed the detectives that while the woman was barely coherent, she was insistent that she wanted SVU to help her and that's why they were called. The detectives identify the woman as Nikki Staines who does not recall what happen but says she thinks she was raped.

Rollins meets with Benson and she reveals that she's going out on a date with Rob Miller. Rollins is shocked by this and describes the cases that Miller was involved in. Benson reveals that she had that feeling as well and that is the reason why she agreed to have a date with him, with Rollins realizing she wants to confirm her suspicions.


Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast

  • Ian Blackman as Judge Leonard
  • Jerry Clicquot as J.J. Austen
  • Charlie Thurston as David Smith
  • Paul Hickert as Alphonse D'Osso
  • John Bermudez as Andrew Rogers
  • Casey Braxton as Joe Alvarado
  • Patrice Bell as Tasha Ali
  • Victoria Prescott as Claudia
  • Chris Davis as Bartender
  • Erica Tachoir as Jogger




Benson: Miller deliberately misled me. He manipulated a judge and he intimidated our victim.
Dodds: Olivia, I'm not saying you're wrong.
Benson: Then what are you saying? Hm?
Dodds: That if we strike at the king and miss, it will be both our heads on the chopping block.
Benson: So let's make sure we don't miss.

Rollins [to Nikki Staines]: Hey, what happened to you?
Nikki Staines: I can't remember. I must have been drugged.
Rollins: Okay, okay. We're gonna take care of you.
Fin: You know who did this to you?
Nikki: No. All I know is that I need a goddamn rape kit.

Nikki Staines: I have been personally threatened by cops dozens of times and now I have been assaulted after a police party, so why aren't you questioning them? You should be looking at your own.

Rob Miller: Let me tell you something. You're either a wolf in this life or a lamb. My father was a lamb. He had a shop and every week, the wolves in my neighborhood would come and pick the shelves clean, and when there was nothing left to steal, they took my sister in a back room and my father did nothing. You know what I learned? I'd rather run with the wolves.

Nikki: All the cases that I've done. And all the... all the victims that I've put on the stand. The way that I have have torn them apart.
Benson: You were just doing your job.
Nikki: I know. I know what I did to them now. And I don't know if I will ever be the same again. And I... I don't even know if I'll be able to do my job again.
Benson: You will because you have to, and because, Nikki, because you're damn good at it.

Background Information and Notes

  • Benson finds out about a memo Dodds wrote about possibly replacing her after she took a leave of absence after Noah's kidnapping (which happened in the episodes "Intent" and "Gone Baby Gone"). She also learns that Fin knew about the memo (which was when the audience first knew about it), which was revealed in the episode "Flight Risk".

Episode scene cards

1 2 3

The Flat Health & Fitness
23 West 24th Street
Thursday, March 7

Mic Check 1-2 Studios
401 West 50th Street
Friday, March 8

Law Firm of
Miller, Griffin & Woodruff
562 1st Avenue
Monday, March 11

4 5 6

Citizens of Chelsea
401 West 25th Street
Tuesday, March 12

Chambers of
Judge Brian Leonard
60 Centre Street
Tuesday, March 12

Panorama Room
Queens Museum
Corona, Queens
Wednesday, March 13

Previous episode:
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Season 20
Next episode:
"Dearly Beloved"
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