The team of investigators interview husband and wife serial killers with their execution date set for two days time.



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Episode credited cast:
Warden Charles Diehl
Sam Shapiro
Deb Mason
David A. Kimball ...
Frank Sheffield
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Cher Calvin ...
Lara Sedgwick
Ren Casey ...

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The team investigates the Dawes couple on death row in Florida State Penitentiary for thirteen (or more) murders on young blonde girls in 1985. A dozen girl's bodies were found buried under the sexual psychopath Jacob's garage after the police got an anonymous call. Sarah Jean Dawes (née Mason) 'the Ice Queen' only confessed killing her own two-year old son Riley, Jacob would have ordered her to kill him because he slowed down their flight. Sarah's mother Deb Mason claims she was a normal shy girl util she met Jacob, her late father was a strict soldier but hit his wife. Gideon concludes from a letter to her mother and an interview that Sarah Jean is physically innocent. She just blames herself for failing to stop Jacob and tipped the police herself. Jacob, who clearly craves notoriety, refuses to tell Aaron "Hotch" Hotchner or Jennifer "JJ" Jareau if there are more bodies. When told that Sarah got a stay of execution, Jacob spontaneously offers the location of their son's burial ... Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

25 January 2006 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


The town of Keystone heights is within the appropriate driving distance of the prison for the time line to work. However, it's a small rural area, and houses like the one shown simply don't exist here. The closest town that would have a house that style is Fleming Island, another hour or more north east of the prison. See more »


In the second scene, we see the crew traveling by car to Starke, FL. At the bottom of the screen we see the word "Florida" but there are mountains outside of the vehicle window. See more »


Jason Gideon: I think you're innocent.
Sarah Jean Dawes: We are all guilty of something.
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Criminal Minds (TV Show Intro / Main Song Theme)
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User Reviews

striking performances
31 July 2012 | by See all my reviews

From what I've watched so far, Criminal Minds is a mediocre program overall. It's something that's good to watch, when you have nothing else to do. I don't doubt it could get better, but for now (well up to this episode) it's just a plain Jane - there's nothing that would make me recommend it to all my friends, but I have no reason to dismiss it and never watch it again.

However, I do believe this episode, "Riding the Lightening" to have been a flash of something beautiful in all that is plain. As a viewer, I was finally able to connect with a character on amazing amount of levels - something I've found until now was very lacking in this show. This is a very beautiful episode, there are a lot of questions raised, a very powerful story is told, and it made me cry, a lot. And due to the emotional experience i had watching it, I would very much recommend the episode. Happy viewing!

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