SVU, Episode 12.09
Production number: 12009
First aired: 17 November 2010
  {{{nNthProducedInSeries}}}th of 432 produced in SVU  
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Written By
George Huang

Directed By
Helen Shaver


Stabler speaks at a Take Back the Night rally at his daughter's college campus, and the rally inspires a woman to accuse a fellow student of rape. Stabler and Benson then investigate the case, and ADA Paxton is assigned to prosecute it.


At Hudson University's Take Back the Night rally, a student named Bethany accuses another student Chuck of raping her. Stabler brings both parties in for questioning. Bethany swears that months ago, when she passed out on Chuck's bed, she woke up to him raping her. Chuck tells Stabler that he and Bethany "hook up", but she cried rape.

When Bethany told the college of her attack, Chuck received disciplinary action and a permanent mark on his academic record. Chuck also informs Stabler that Bethany has a web site that's sole purpose is telling other women that Chuck is a rapist. Stabler, Munch and Fin personally believe this is a classic case of Bethany not taking rejection well, while Benson believes Chuck really is a rapist.

ADA Paxton surprises everybody by returning to SVU. Ever since she was suspended for appearing intoxicated in court, she's been sobering up in rehab. Now she's completed her stint, and she's been assigned to this latest rape case. She tells the detectives right away that they need more physical evidence before she can press charges against Chuck. Stabler and Benson discover that Hudson University has encouraged a buddy system for college students who drink, so intoxicated females won't find themselves in dangerous situations.

Stabler finds out that his daughter Kathleen was the sober "buddy" for Bethany on the night of her attack. Kathleen tearfully admits leaving a drunken Bethany's side for a few minutes. That's when Bethany disappeared and left with Chuck. Kathleen drops off Chuck's sealed disciplinary file for Stabler to look at. Kathleen says the guy she liked at school stole the file for her after she asked him to.

Kathleen still feels guilty for not being there on the night of Bethany's alleged attack, and hopes this file will put Chuck away for good. Kathleen assures her dad that there's a legal loophole allowing Stabler to look at the contents inside the file, as long as he never asked Kathleen to get the files for him to begin with. The detectives interview another student who's currently dating Chuck. Carla tells Benson and Stabler she was pregnant with Chuck's baby, but lost it a week ago. Carla says she Chuck had sex, and he convinced her to try a new lubricant to enhance the pleasure (which contained Misoprostol).

The next day, Carla miscarried the baby. The detectives hint that Chuck's "love potion" lubricant was used to kill Carla's unborn baby. The lubricant used on Carla was mixed with an ulcer medication with the side effect of fetal harm. Paxton meets with Chuck and his lawyer who has proof that Chuck takes the ulcer medication as an alternative for erectile dysfunction, which he suffers from when drinking.

The lawyer stands by Chuck's story that he had no intention of causing harm to his unborn child. Stabler assures Paxton that he's in the clear because of the legal loophole that states he can have possession of the file, if he never directly asked his daughter for it. Paxton has no choice but to subpoena Kathleen and have her testify under oath that she in fact had the files stolen without her father's request - a confession that could get her expelled from college.

Stabler tearfully pleas with Paxton to change her mind about calling Kathleen to the stand. Paxton has a change of heart and tells Stabler that she'll tell the court Kathleen was an undercover informant, and that's how she got a hold of the files. She promises Stabler that Kathleen's name will not be revealed to the Judge.

The next day, Chuck's lawyer asks the Judge to step down, based on an incident from her past that would make her impartial on Chuck's case. Judge Quinn meets with both lawyers in her chambers and says she's removing herself from the case. Paxton wants to know her reasoning, but the Judge won't go into details. Instead, she turns the case over to another judge. The other judge happens to be the same one who ordered Paxton into rehab last year.

Paxton immediately requests another judge, but her request is denied. Paxton feels her entire case is lost based on this new judge. Judge Quinn tells Paxton to fight for this case, especially since she had to remove herself from it, and promises to do whatever she can to make sure Chuck is convicted. Judge Quinn meets with Carla at Hudson University, to try to persuade her to testify against Chuck.

Judge Quinn shares her emotional story of being gang raped 40 years ago while in college, and how she never was able to find justice. She reminds Carla that this is her time to get justice for what Chuck did to her. Carla is moved enough to agree to testify against Chuck.

The next day in court, Carla is a no-show. Paxton encounters a very impatient judge, who warns that if Carla doesn't appear to testify in 30 minutes, Chuck's case is dismissed. Benson goes searching for Carla at her dorm room and discovers her unconscious on the floor.

Later, Warner says Carla died from toxic shock syndrome, from the abortion Chuck caused by administering the ulcer drug to her during intercourse. The detectives and Paxton go to the bar to arrest Chuck on manslaughter charges for administering the drug to Carla. Paxton is relieved that she has herself a winning case, after all.


Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast



Benson: Sonya, what are you doing here?
Paxton: You mean how did I escape the drunk tank?
Stabler: No, she means why us?

Background information and notes

Episode scene cards

1 2 3 4

Hudson University
Campus Police
Monday, November 8

Hudson University
Women's Crisis Center
Monday, November 8

Hudson University
Dorm Room of
Carla Vincent
Tuesday, November 9

Green's Pharmacy
2789 Broadway
Wednesday, November 10

5 6 7

Chambers of
Judge Sylvia Quinn
Wednesday, November 10

Arraignment Court
Part 37
Thursday, November 11

Supreme Court
Probable Cause Hearing
Part 71
Friday, November 12

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