"Hunting Ground"
SVU, Episode 13.15
Production number: 13015
First aired: 22 February 2012
  th of 476 produced in SVU  
th of 476 released in SVU
  th of 1229 released in all  
Teleplay By
David Matthews & John P. Roche

Story By
John P. Roche & Warren Leight

Directed By
Jonathan Kaplan

Detectives Olivia Benson and Nick Amaro lead the search for a serial killer who targets young prostitutes.


Detective Benson and Executive ADA Haden's romantic weekend is interrupted by news that an underage prostitute has gone missing. As the SVU detectives dig into her disappearance, they find a pattern of several missing escorts who all posted ads on a popular newspaper’s website. The line between Benson and Haden's personal and professional lives starts to blur as the squad races against the clock to find the girl before it's too late. Eventually, with the help of an escaped victim, the detectives track down the killer, but Amaro is forced to kill him to save Benson. They rescue the victim and find the bodies of eleven other victims during the investigation, but learn that he killed fifteen people.


Episode summary


Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast


Episode quotes

Background information and notes

  • This episode was inspired by the real-life crimes of the Long Island serial killer, who is currently unidentified and unapprehended.
  • Graham Winger's unassuming appearance and his habit of abducting, hunting and raping his victims is most likely inspired by the real-life serial killer Robert Hansen, who raped over 30 women and killed between 17 and 21 of them.
  • While it is not stated directly, it's obvious that the film Haden and Benson are discussing at the beginning of the episode is The Artist.
  • This is the first time Detective Nick Amaro has killed a perpetrator. It occurred when the suspect was about to shoot Olivia and his victim, who survived his attacks.

Episode scene cards

1 2 3 4

G&S Services LLC
51 Woodhull Avenue
Hollis, Queens
Monday, February 6

Offices of
The Downtown Voice
68 Washington Square South
Tuesday, February 7

1061 Oceanview Avenue
Manhattan Beach, Brooklyn
Tuesday, February 7

General Hospital
117 Ulster Avenue
Saturday, February 11

Previous episode:
"Home Invasions"
"Hunting Ground"
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Season 13
Next episode:
"Child's Welfare"
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