SVU, Episode 6.04
Production number: E5207
First aired: 19 October 2004
  th of 476 produced in SVU  
th of 476 released in SVU
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Benson Scavenger
Written By
Dawn DeNoon & Lisa Marie Petersen

Directed By
Daniel Sackheim


The detectives are in a time crunch when they try to solve clues left by a serial killer who is basically taunting them to find him before he gets another victim.


Two joggers find a baby alone in a stroller with a note taped to him saying that his mother was kidnapped. The note reads, "The mean, mean man has a monster in his head. Find him by tomorrow or my mom will be dead. Rupert Daniel Kilmore"

Benson and Stabler interview a watchmaker named Rupert Kilmore about the rape and abduction. He expresses his disgust that a rapist used his name, when a call comes from an anonymous man telling Rupert to "Give the detectives the fax". The fax reads "Once there were so cops so dumb, they took hours to get to clue number 1. Mommy's running out of time, so the answer is written above the rhyme."

Benson and Stabler track down a junkie who sent the fax to them at the watch store. He has a message for them but he is too high to remember. After 8 hours the clues they get are the words Hog, Pat, Mend, Top, Yarn. Eric Liebert comes to the precinct saying that the baby was his son and finds out his wife Julie is the kidnapping victim. Captain Cragen receives a envelope via messenger with Julie Liebert's severed ear.

Munch, Cragen, and Staber crack the code from the clue words given by the junkie. Benson and Stabler go to the payphone only to discover they were too late and missed the call. They trace the call and are led to a warehouse where the discover Julie's body with "RDK is," with an arrow pointing to the woman's back, indicating it means "RDK is back", and another riddle saying that he's abducted another woman.

The detectives discover the body of the second victim covered in roses with symbols drawn on her feet and a newspaper from that day expressing his disappointment in the lack of media attention.

They talk with a surviving victim of the original RDK killings and find out she was interviewed by someone impersonating a reporter, which leads them to Humphrey Becker. He is not the real RDK, but a copy cat. They search Humphrey's apartment and find a diary indicating where he plans to take his next victim, a showgirl. While picking up his next intended victim Benson gets a call saying the survivor from the original murders is missing. Benson goes to her apartment and finds Humphrey laying in her bed.

During interrogation, Humphrey refuses to say where Jeanette is, telling Stabler that he buried her alive with an oxygen tank good for fifteen hours of air. Stabler presss him for details, eventually getting him in a chokehold, but Cragen and Doctor Huang enter the room and Cragen orders Stabler out, leaving Wong to deal with Humphrey. As the interrogation continues, Huang deduced that Humphrey was emotionally scarred by his mother as a child, which is why he only targeted victims that were mothers but left the sons alive. Reasoning that it might be the key to locating Jeanette, Benson locates Hunphrey's mother. After her introduction into the interrogation, Humphrey becomes more and more agitated, displaying the tension between the two. His mother reveals that Humphrey was a difficult child and that she would lock him in a dark closet when she went out to keep him from hurting himself, leading Huang and Stabler to realize that Humphrey is afraid of the dark because if this. Benson and Stabler lock Humphrey in a closet until he reveals Jeanette's location. They find Jeanette trapped in an old refrigerator, but alive.


Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast


RDK, Policeman's Helmet, Manhattan Sun, Lincoln Center; Julia Liebert; Gloria Dunham


"Why, Detective, is that your phone vibrating in your pocket, or do you just find me terribly exciting?"

Humphrey Becker, after Stabler's cellphone goes off during the interrogation.

(Huang has told Becker that the FBI have gotten involved in the case)

Humphrey Becker: And what are they saying about me?

Dr. George Huang: That you're impotent. (pause)

Humphrey Becker: Now why would they say that?

Dr. George Huang: All of RDK's victims were raped. None of your victims were.

Humprey Becker: They have no idea what I did to those women.

Dr. George Huang: Well, you didn't rape them.

Dr. Huang: What did your mother do to you?

Humphrey Becker: Please! With you people it's always about the mother.

Ida Becker: I couldn't take him anywhere. Not even to my movies.

Humphrey Becker: Shut up!

Ida Becker: As soon as the lights went down, he'd throw a tantrum until they asked us to leave.

Humphrey Becker: Well, you sure in hell found a way to go to them anyway.

Dr. George Huang: How'd you manage that?

Ida Becker: Left him at home.

Humphrey Becker: Shut up!

Elliot Stabler: Alone?

Ida Becker: I made sure he couldn’t hurt himself

Humphrey Becker: (visibly agitated) Please...

Elliot Stabler: You locked him in the closet

Ida Becker: It was only for two hours. But he'd get so worked up, he'd soil himself.

Humphrey Becker: (enraged) Shut up! Don't you ever shut up?! (screaming) DON'T YOU EVER SHUT UP?!

Background information and notes

  • RDK is probably based on the notorious BTK killer, Dennis Rader, who murdered ten people between 1974 and 1991; by sheer coincidence, when the episode aired in October 2004 - 13 years after the last killing and the trail seemingly long gone cold - police in Wichita, Kansas, having received a letter from BTK about a previously unknown murder, were busy making the case which would lead to Rader's arrest four months later.
  • During the episode, Becker leaves a note saying "Who do I have to kill to get on page 1 above the fold?". This is similar to the opening of a letter written by BTK killer Dennis Rader, who wrote, "How many do I have to Kill before I get a name in the paper or some national attention."

Episode scene cards

1 2 3

Kilmore Time
Sales & Repair
Staten Island, New York
Tuesday, September 28

Apartment of
Jeannette Henley
38 West 84th Street
Wednesday, September 29

Conrado's Cigar Club
& Lounge
253 East 51st Street
Wednesday, September 29

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