Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Season 5, Episode 5

Serendipity (21 Oct. 2003)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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After finding a dead baby in a plastic bag in the sewer, the detectives find the mother, also dead, in her nearby apartment. After talking to her doctor the detectives discover that the ... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. George Huang (as B.D. Wong)
Jack Gilpin ...
Ron Wolcott
Kelly Wolcott
Dan Ziskie ...
Dr. Curtis
Caralyn Kozlowski ...
Mrs. Newlands
Curious Woman
Marcy Cochran


After finding a dead baby in a plastic bag in the sewer, the detectives find the mother, also dead, in her nearby apartment. After talking to her doctor the detectives discover that the mother had planned to give her baby up for adoption and the adoptive parents were paying her doctor's bills. During the investigation they meet Casey Novak, the new A.D.A. Written by Anonymous

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21 October 2003 (USA)  »

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Looisely based on the case of Dr. John Schneeberger. Dr. Schneeberger inserted a tube into his arm filled with a patient's blood in an attempt to fool investigators in Kipling, Saskatchewan, into thinking that he was not responsible for the sexual assaults for which he was eventually found guilty. See more »


The entomologist claims that the blowfly larva on the dead baby were freshly laid, so the baby died not more than 3 hours before. Firstly flies lay eggs, not larva. And secondly, it takes anywhere from 12 to 24 hours for blow fly eggs to hatch into larva. See more »


A.D.A. Casey Novak: What do you tell your boyfriend?
Detective Olivia Benson: I don't have one actually, once they find out what I do, the ones that don't pull away immediately get too interested and want to know all the sickening details.
A.D.A. Casey Novak: I guess it's easier on the men's side.
Detective Olivia Benson: Well, Fin doesn't talk about his personal life at work, Elliot doesn't talk about his work at home, and Munch has just given up.
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Enter Casey Novak
26 July 2015 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Diane Neal who played a perpetrator in an earlier episode of SVU must have made some good impression on the producers because when Stephanie March left the show Neal was hired to replace her as the sex crimes ADA. But in this show what's demonstrated is that she's going to have to get used to the way they operate. As for Benson and Stabler they're not crazy about Casey Novak's 'hands on' approach.

An aborted baby fetus and the mother are found dead in separate places and we learn the victim was a surrogate mother. It gets complicated and I won't say more but the squad gets a hit off the DNA they lift from a suspect and it opens up a new case involving a serial rapist gone undetected.

I always liked Diane Neal's character. She was rather unrealistically brought back for guest star appearances and given how she was written out in the future it was dumb to bring her back. But right now she's getting her feet wet in sex crimes and Neal makes a fine debut.

You have to see how the serial rapist was beating the investigators for years. Good story.

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