Criminal Minds (2005–2020)
5 user


The BAU co-work with the U.S. Army to find the perpetrator behind an anthrax attack on a park in Annapolis, Maryland.


John Gallagher


Jeff Davis (created by), Oanh Ly | 1 more credit »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Mantegna ... David Rossi
Paget Brewster ... Emily Prentiss
Shemar Moore ... Derek Morgan
Matthew Gray Gubler ... Dr. Spencer Reid
A.J. Cook ... Jennifer Jareau
Kirsten Vangsness ... Penelope Garcia
Thomas Gibson ... Aaron Hotchner
Dan Lauria ... General Lee Whitworth, MD
Tamlyn Tomita ... Dr. Linda Kimura
David Dean Bottrell ... Chad Brown
Miles Anderson ... Dr. Nichols
Donald Sage Mackay ... Senator Baylor
Joe Howard ... Russ Daniels
Eric Brandon Eric Brandon ... Ethan
Traci Belushi ... Melinda


Within 18 hours of their common time together, 12 people who visited Quiet Hills Park in Annapolis, Maryland, have died from anthrax poisoning, with at least 13 more in emergency rooms headed in the same direction. It is a highly sophisticated strain of anthrax, meaning that it was developed by someone with a science background. The military is called in as the BAU believes that such scientific work is the specialty of the military, the resulting pathogen was used as a potential WMD. Although the strain of the pathogen is not being used by the military, military scientists are the most likely candidates able to develop such a strain. The attack site, a family-oriented public park, is contrary to such work, and thus the BAU believes the site is personal to the perpetrator. Because of the panic it could cause, there is a media blackout on the story, which negatively affects some on the team, some for personal and some for professional reasons. The team is hit even harder when deep into ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Prentiss says to Morgan that the "suspect" in the 2001 anthrax attacks sent letters to 2 senators with whom he had conflicting religious views. The 2001 suspect that is spoken about is never named in the episode. However, it can be assumed that she is talking about Bruce Ivins. Ivins worked at Fort Detrick as a biodefense researcher, microbiologist and vaccinologist. His name is most likely left out because Ivins committed suicide when he believed the FBI were about to file criminal charges against him. See more »


The train that pulls into the station (filled with passengers) has a "Not in Service" message on its display. See more »


Jennifer Jareau: I don't know how to do this. I can't stop thinking about Henry. He goes for a walk almost every single day at Potomac Park. What type of mother am I if I don't at least call and tell him to stay home?
Aaron Hotchner: JJ, we can't
Jennifer Jareau: I know, but... how do I not?
Aaron Hotchner: I understand that you want to protect your son. But if we all called home and use this information to give us an advantage that other people don't have... is that the right thing to do?
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References Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) See more »


Criminal Minds Theme
Written by Mark Mancina
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User Reviews

The case of the anthrax attack
30 November 2016 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Season 4 is a contender for the best 'Criminal Minds' season, with so many fantastic episodes and even lesser episodes such as "Demonology" and "Catching Out" not being bad at all.

"Amplification" is up there with the fantastic episodes of the season, and almost up there with the best of the show overall. What was immediately impressive was that it took a very familiar idea that has been portrayed a number of times in media and made a tense, suspenseful and thrilling episode where one really finds themselves caring for the characters and their welfare.

The story is incredibly compelling throughout, with tension, suspense and thrills aplenty as well as emotional impact, showing the full horrors of something as terrifying as an anthrax attack. The script is tautly structured and thought-provoking, doing a wonderful job with developing the BAU team and how the case affects them personally, Reid and Morgan are especially well done here. Love the chemistry between JJ and Hotch (very touching bonding scenes), Reid and Morgan (almost like brothers) and Rossi and Prentiss (their ending scene being a standout, showing a compassionate side to Rossi).

Production values are stylish, classy and atmospheric, while the music is hauntingly moody. The acting is very good, with particularly brilliant performances from Matthew Gray Gubler (not surprising, he has always been a bright spot, even in lesser episodes when he isn't underused) and Shemar Moore.

Overall, fantastic episode that does wonders with an old idea, but with such great execution it was an idea that didn't feel old. 10/10 Bethany Cox

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USA | Canada



Release Date:

13 May 2009 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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