The investigation into an extreme fighting death leads to the discovery of a 28-year-old woman posing as a 16-year-old high school student.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. George Huang (as B.D. Wong) (credit only)
Cassandra Sullivan
Scott Heston
Sonia Briglund
Scott Sowers ...


The investigation into an extreme fighting death leads to the discovery of a 28-year-old woman posing as a 16-year-old high school student.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis






Release Date:

15 May 2007 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


This episode was loosely based on the story of Treva Throneberry. Shortly after graduating high school in 1987, Throneberry traveled the United States claiming to be an underage teenager She attended many high schools and lived in many foster and group homes throughout the US. In 1998 she moved to Vancouver, Washington, and as sixteen-year-old Brianna Stewart enrolled in Evergreen High School. After graduating in 2000, she attended Clark College. In January 2001 she tried to get an official birth certificate so she could obtain a Social Security number. When her fingerprints were checked, her original identity was revealed, leading to her arrest in Vancouver, Washington. On March 22, 2001, Throneberry was arrested for theft, fraud, and perjury for trying to obtain legal documents with false identity. She had defrauded the state for foster care and college tuition worth $4,670. She could not raise bail of $20,000. Other charges around the country also increased the load. Throneberry continued to insist that she was Brianna Stewart and refused to acknowledge her parents. Authorities proved her original identity with fingerprints and DNA testing. Psychologists and lawyers began to study her, trying to find out if she was a con artist or delusional. Her trial started in November 2001 in Vancouver. State prosecutors charged that Throneberry was a con artist who had intentionally taken advantage of the social security system for personal gain. Throneberry fired her court-appointed lawyer and decided to defend herself in court. She was not successful and received three years and two months for fraud and perjury and was sent to the Washington Correction Center for Women. The judge recommended that she receive psychotherapy in prison. Throneberry was released on June 18, 2003, after two years. As of 2003, she continued to maintain that she is Brianna Stewart and tried to appeal her fraud conviction. See more »


In the video of Riley Cuskey's death there is not nearly enough blood spilled to cause a healthy person to die. If the femoral artery is severed blood flows out as if from a hose. Death is very quick, a few minutes at most. See more »


Cassandra Sullivan: [to Novak] They kicked me out of school, out of foster care. Everything I own in the world is in those two garbage bags. If you hadn't gotten me into this shelter, I'd be living on the street.
Casey Novak: I want you to take the plea.
Cassandra Sullivan: I didn't rape anybody.
Casey Novak: Technically, you did.
Cassandra Sullivan: I'm only 16.
Casey Novak: You're gonna have to drop that act, Denise.
Cassandra Sullivan: My name is Cassandra.
See more »

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User Reviews

Step into adulthood
19 December 2014 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

When I first saw the opening of this SVU episode I thought it was going to be based on the Eigil Vesti homicide. The shot of one leather masked figure leaving the scene and another inside a deserted apartment house dead on a mat made me think. Of course the real story was bad enough, but what it led to was something quite different.

The dead body used to be a high school kid who did some extreme martial arts fighting for exhibit on line. The one who filmed it Dan Leonard brought the tape into the squad and got at least one local pedophile off that Benson and Stabler were zeroing in on.

On the periphery of all this is a kind of groupie girl hanging out with the teen combatants. Misti Traya gets the center of their attention when Leonard is killed and the thought with Diane Neal prosecuting the case is that Traya did it to protect her secret. Not only was she using an alias but she was 28 years old and still in high school and foster care.

This story is truly tragic. For whatever reasons and I've known a few in my life, that is people who just don't want to step into adulthood. They like to be teens forever and in her case she found foster care so satisfying that she wouldn't leave. Traya would just pick up and move to another area and work herself into the system as a homeless youth.

Traya may have issues, but she's not dumb. She pursues a legal strategy that is quite unorthodox when she's charged with Leonard's murder.

As for her own future, guilty or innocent, it isn't a bright one.

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