Law and Order, Special Victims Unit - Season 17
(2015 - 2016)
The series was renewed for a seventeenth season on February 5, 2015.
Episode - Devil Dissections - 1701 - NBC - 2015.
The SVU returns to the beach where serial killer Gregory Yates (Dallas Roberts) had buried his victims when another body is washed ashore. Detective Rollins visits Yates in prison to obtain a confession, but he instead provides information that leads the squad to a different suspect (ME Dr. Carl Rudnick, who had performed the autopsy), causing ADA Barba to deal with the possibility of Yates appealing his conviction in court.
Episode - Criminal Pathology - 1702 - NBC - 2015.
The SVU team decides to do a secondary investigation into Yates' murders when his fiancée's dismembered body is discovered washed ashore. The clues then lead to the Deputy Chief M.E. Carl Rudnick (Jefferson Mays), who failed to disclose his past association with Yates. After Sergeant Benson places M.E. Rudnick under arrest, Barba pushes the SVU team to gather as much evidence against him as possible to secure a conviction. With a trial looming, Rudnick hires two defense attorneys (Elizabeth Marvel & Delaney Williams) to square off against Barba in court. Meanwhile, Rollins discovers that she is pregnant.
A transgender teen, Avery, is sent to the hospital for injuries inflicted when three boys bullied and then pushed her off a walking bridge. Although Avery shows forgiveness to the boys, ruthless ADA Kenneth O'Dwyer (Robert Sean Leonard) takes the case out of family court and decides to try one of the offenders on adult charges. Detective Tutuola and the SVU squad are conflicted on whether the crime fits the charges, while dealing with the delicacy of the families involved.
Episode - Institutional Fail - 1704 - NBC - 2015.
When a child is found wandering the streets alone, Benson and SVU search for the neglectful mother, only to find another child in danger in the same home. After Benson questions the social worker (John Magaro), they discovered he has not visited the family's home in months, leading Benson to push Barba to prosecute the social worker's supervisor (Whoopi Goldberg) for falsifying records. When one child dies, Benson and Barba intensify their case against social services, which is met with resistance by Deputy Chief Dodds and 1PP. Meanwhile, Dodds announces Benson's promotion to lieutenant and his choice for her new sergeant-his son Mike.
Episode - Community Policing - 1705 - NBC - 2015.
While in pursuit of an SVU rape suspect, detectives from the 27th precinct shoot and kill an unarmed black man. Internal Affairs investigates the shooting, but under intense pressure from the Mayor and the DA, Barba takes the case to a grand jury to indict the cops. While Benson believes the detectives were following procedure, Barba disagrees, creating a tense divide between the newly-minted lieutenant and the ADA.
Episode - Maternal Instincts - 1706 - NBC - 2015.
While Rollins' mother (Virginia Madsen) throws her a baby shower, the SVU is called to a hotel after a violinist is raped by her flautist colleague, Anton (Zach McGowan). The man has no recollection of his wrongdoings and claims he was drugged and robbed by an escort. When the security tape arrives, Rollins sees that it was her fugitive sister, Kim (Lindsay Pulsipher), who stole Anton's flute, leading her to have to track down her sister before Benson and Tutuola find out her secret. Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Dodds introduces his son, Mike (Andy Karl), as SVU's new sergeant.
Episode - Patrimonial Burden - 1707 - NBC - 2015.
The SVU is forced to investigate pregnant 13-year old Lane Baker from a famous reality TV family with 10 children. After initial hesitation by the parents to let the girl talk with detectives, Lane confesses that the family's cameraman had sex with her. However, the cameraman shows footage that Lane is covering for her brother, Graham, who has multiple past accusations of sexual misconduct. When SVU looks into the family tree, Benson and Detective Carisi realize that there is evidence of a cover-up, not only within the famous family but also in the entire small-town community. Meanwhile, Rollins experiences pregnancy health issues and is ordered on bed-rest.
Episode - Melancholy Pursuit - 1708 - NBC - 2015.
A girl goes missing and SVU is called in to find the 15-year old. When the girl turns up dead, Sgt. Dodds begins to feel overwhelmed by the case. The detectives get a break when Dr. Warner is able to get a partial DNA match, but it soon turns into a headache for Benson, as the match is to a dead man who had many children with different women. As SVU weaves through a complicated family history, Dodds becomes determined to find the man responsible. Episode inspired by an Italian case of murder.
Episode - Depravity Standard - 1709 - NBC - 2015.
Three years after Benson arrested him, Lewis Hodda (Tom Sizemore) refuses a plea deal on kidnapping charges. When the parents of the kidnapped boy refuse to let him testify, Barba must try Hodda on murder charges for a 1999 abduction that Benson also handled. Benson's interrogation tactics come under fire and the savvy defense attorney (Robin Weigert) hires former SVU colleague, Dr. Huang (BD Wong), to challenge Barba's already-shaky case in court. Meanwhile, Rollins goes into labor, but faces extreme difficulties.
Episode - Catfishing Teacher - 1710 - NBC - 2016.
A high school teacher has sex with two of her students. Another student, Zack Foster, receives text messages, supposedly from her, to meet her at a train station and bring his passport. However, she does not show up and Zack is, instead, kidnapped by his wrestling coach, who has a history of molesting his athletes. Zack is taken to a cabin in Pennsylvania where he is tracked down by the SVU team. When Zack's parents refuse to allow him to testify in court, SVU turns to another victim, Nat Dennehy, who still resides in New York. Nat also refuses to testify but goes to the coach's house, determined to get a confession from him. Meanwhile, Rollins adjusts to motherhood with her new daughter.
Episode - Townhouse Incident - 1711 - NBC - 2016.
When Benson's sitter expresses concern over another mother for whom she babysits, Benson looks into the matter and steps into the middle of a violent home invasion where she becomes a hostage. To protect the family and save her own life, Benson works to get inside the perps' heads while SVU and newly promoted Internal Affairs Bureau (IAB) Captain Ed Tucker (Robert John Burke) works the escalating situation from the outside to rescue the lieutenant.