'NCIS' Recap: Can Gibbs Get Justice for a Murdered Female Veteran?
'NCIS' Recap: Can Gibbs Get Justice for a Murdered Female Veteran?
Alexandria Gunn
Alexandria Gunn
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
Abby's exit storyline begins in this episode of NCIS season 15, titled "One Step Closer." When she lands a dinner invitation at one of the most exclusive restaurants in the city, everyone wants to be her plus-one. Meanwhile, Gibbs agrees to take on a case of a murdered veteran, despite it not being in the team's jurisdiction. Will it be the PR nightmare that Vance fears?

Gibbs Feels a Connection

The episode opens with Gibbs attempting to get into the base but being held up by a commotion. The guards are preventing a woman from getting in. Sara Carter wants to talk to someone in charge so much that she punches a guard and is arrested. Gibbs decides to find out what she wants. All Sara needs is for someone to look into her mother's murder and find the killer. The murder was looked at as a burglary gone wrong, and nobody was ever arrested.

Hearing about how Sara, her mother May and her grandmother are all veterans encourages Gibbs to take on the case. Vance worries that it's out of their jurisdiction and could be a PR nightmare, but Gibbs isn't backing down.

The local police department is willing to pass on all the information, and it doesn't take long to find Robert Flynn, who had been arrested for a burglary at a home close to May Carter's house. Flynn shares that he'd heard shouting coming from May's house, which the police had previously looked into. May and Sara had been arguing around the time of May's death.

Sara is in thousands of dollars of debt and living in her car with her son. She can't work because of the traumatic brain injury she suffered while deployed. It turns out that May had cashed in her 401(k) to start a photography business but used the money to pay Sara's bills instead. That was what the two had been arguing about.

Now Sara doesn't want to admit that she's homeless because her son will be taken from her. That stops her from taking up Reeves' offer to stay at a homeless shelter for veteran women with children. After working with a charity for homeless vets for some time, he understands this and doesn't pressure her. Instead, he gives her a prepaid cell phone with his number in case she changes her mind.

Piecing the Puzzle Together

NCIS get to work on getting all the pieces of the puzzle together. One piece leads them to a motel by a gas station. The owner instantly does a runner but is hit by a car before Reeves and Torres can catch him.

There's a hidden cupboard in the front desk. He was known by narcotics, but they hadn't been able to find out what the guy's dealing. Now NCIS has to figure out whether May was stealing pills to sell to the motel owner or had been buying pills from him.

This connects to the other piece of the puzzle, involving why May's body had been moved. Whoever killed her had moved the body to get something. Abby works her magic to find out that it was a piece of paper with serial numbers written on it. Those numbers link to a shipping company, and the numbers were for medication that was being shipped under a veteran program. The medication had been recorded as stolen.

Sara admits that her mom used to use drugs after she suffered from depression, but she entered rehab and got sober. She doesn't believe that May relapsed or was involved in a drug ring. The police never ran a tox panel on May, so there's nothing to say either way. However, the gun that the motel owner had was the same gun that killed May.

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The Case is Solved

When Sara is attacked, her son uses the prepaid cell phone to call Reeves for help. Sara is able to fight her attacker off, and she gets to NCIS. Jack is sure that someone was looking for something in her car, but she can't think of what it could be.

In the end, Sara admits that her pills had also gone missing, and now she fears that her mom has stolen them. However, May had filed a report with the insurance company and, during this process, accidentally got hold of all the tracking numbers of stolen pills. May turned detective to take down the drug ring and tracked everything back to the shipping company boss. He was the drug supplier and realized that May was on to him so he had the motel owner kill May.

The shipping company owner realized that Sara had a photo that May had taken. He'd attacked Sara to get the photo.

Abby Chooses a Colleague

While dealing with the case, Abby also has an important decision to make: who she'll take to a free dinner for two at a prestigious restaurant. McGee, Bishop, Palmer and Torres all fight for the place, but Abby wants to give it to someone who really deserves it.

One thing that helps her make a choice is seeing all the volunteering that Reeves is doing. He volunteers at a homeless shelter so that he can feel close to his mom. He and his mom were homeless when he was a child, but his mom died when he was 3. Volunteering is also a part of his recovery, and he has plans to retire and open his own shelter.

Abby chooses Reeves to go to dinner with her. As they walk home, they're stopped by someone asking for money. He pulls out a gun, and the situation climaxes, with Reeves pushing Abby out of the way as the gun fires and the screen goes black.

Did you expect that shocking ending? Are you ready for Abby's last episode? What did you think of the focus on female vets? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

NCIS season 15 airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on CBS. Want more news? Like our NCIS Facebook page.

(Image courtesy of CBS)