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I have not been near a computer since last week’s episodes of pretty little liars and twisted aired.   I owe you double and will be getting my computer very soon! It’s going to be a bit busy until the end of July but then I will be back in full swing. 🙂

EDIT TO ADD: The next 2 entries on PLL and Twisted will be combinations of this week’s episodes and last week’s.  The reason I am doing this is because for both shows, one of the episodes had significantly more broken laws than the other one.  Last week, PLL had some unusual good behavior which came to an abrupt halt this week.  For Twisted, it’s the other way around.

The entries will be up ASAP, but while you wait, check out my very farfetched but plausible PLL theory based on Melissa’s behavior in the most recent episode of Pretty Little Liars, “Cat’s Cradle.”

Twisted Pilot: Trying to Twist the Law in Your Favor Only Gets You Locked Up (Twisted Season 1 Episode 1 Recap + Broken Laws)

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Opening note: “twisted” takes place in New York, and accordingly I will be basing the legal aspects of my blog posts about this show on New York law.

The series premiere of “Twisted,” a new show on ABC Family, begins with two eleven-year-old girls playing on the swings. The scene seems innocent enough for approximately three seconds.  Then suddenly the swing set looks as if it belongs in a horror film, and the mood has gone from innocent to ominous.  The creaking noise coming from the swings does not sound fitting for the soundtrack of a play date among eleven-year-olds.

The blonde girl’s name is Jo, and her friend’s name is Lacey.  They’re at their friend Danny’s house, but we haven’t seen him yet.  Jo is worried about him because he has been acting different and strange lately, but Lacey reassures her that there’s nothing wrong — another sentiment that lasts all of two seconds.  The third musketeer of this group, Danny Desai, comes outside and approaches the girls.  He is armed with a red jump rope, but it’s obvious that he’s not in the mood to play any games.  With a pale and terrifying expression on his face, he says, “I had to.  I didn’t have a choice.  Please don’t hate me.” Who else is already reeled in and terrified by the intense beginning of this show?

It turns out, now 16-year-old Jo Masterson (Madelaine Hasson) is terrified as well.  The opening scene that we just watched was a nightmare she was having, but we quickly find out that it is based on an event that really happened when she was 11 years old.  Jo wakes up shaking, and her mother, Tess Masterson (Kimberly Quinn) calls her into the kitchen to eat breakfast before school.  This is going to be more than your average day at school, though.  Jo and her parents have the news turned on, and the anchor is talking about this upcoming school day; Danny Desai (Avan Jogia) is returning to school after spending five years in juvenile detention for strangling and killing his aunt.

Legal Comment/ Broken Law # 1!

I’m confident that I do not need to alert you that Danny has (allegedly) broken a law, I will explain the reasoning behind his conviction.  First of all, in New York, to be convicted of murder in the first degree, one has to not only intend to kill somebody and actually kill them, but additionally meet one of the enumerated conditions, such as killing a police officer, murdering for hire, terrorism, etc.  Since there is no indication that Danny met any of the enumerated conditions for first degree murder, he was more than likely found guilty of second degree murder:

New York Penal – Article 125 – § 125.25 Murder in the Second Degree
 § 125.25 Murder in the second degree.
    “A person is guilty of murder in the second degree when:
    1.  With intent to cause the death of another person, he causes the death of such person or of a third person; except  that in any prosecution under this subdivision, it is an affirmative defense that:
    (a) The defendant acted under the influence of extreme disturbance for which there was a reasonable explanation or excuse, the reasonableness of which is to be determined from the viewpoint of a person in the defendant’s situation under the circumstances as the defendant believed them to be.  Nothing contained in this paragraph shall constitute a defense to a prosecution for, or preclude a conviction of manslaughter in the first degree or any other crime”

I included the above affirmative defense, because Danny insists that he had a reason for what he did and that he had no other choice, yet he will not tell anybody what that reason actually was.  It’s possible that if he DID tell somebody, his conviction could have been lowered from 2nd degree murder to manslaughter in the 1st degree.  

Additionally, Danny’s sentencing was different because he allegedly killed his aunt when he was eleven years old, as opposed to committing the same crime as an adult.  Therefore, he was subjected to New York’s laws for sentencing juvenile offenders :

New York Penal – Article 70 – § 70.05 Sentence of Imprisonment for Juvenile Offender (in relevant part)
 ” 2. Maximum term of sentence. The maximum term of an indeterminate

sentence for a juvenile offender shall be at least three years and the

term shall be fixed as follows:

  (a) For the class A felony of murder in the second degree, the term

shall be life imprisonment;

3. Minimum period of imprisonment. The minimum period of imprisonment
under an indeterminate sentence for a juvenile offender shall be
specified in the sentence as follows:
  (a) For the class A felony of murder in the second degree, the minimum
period of imprisonment shall be fixed by the court and shall be not less
than five years but shall not exceed nine years…”

Therefore, it appears that Danny was sentenced for 2nd degree murder and given the minimum period of imprisonment for a juvenile offender.  I’m sure his upcoming return to school is INCREDIBLY comforting for his peers.  At least he’s not one of those REALLY bad murderers given the maximum sentence.  Now THAT would be crazy. 

Moving on.  As the anchor discusses Danny’s return on TV, Jo’s parents suggest that she should start seeing her psychologist again.  However, Jo has a different idea on how to approach the situation; she wants to yell at her “lunatic freak” of an ex-best friend and tell him how much she hates his guts.  Her father, Kyle Masterson (Sam Robards), the town sheriff, quickly informs Jo that this might not be the greatest idea.  It must be all of the experience in his line of work that gives him the insight that screaming at a confessed murderer could be a poor choice.    

Next, Jo’s former best friend Lacey Porter (Kylie Bunbury) comes onto the screen and expresses her feelings on Danny’s return.  “If it were my choice, I wouldn’t let that socio anywhere near my school,” she proclaims.  At least Danny has a shiny new nickname for his first day back!  As the anchor elaborates on Danny’s family life, we learn that his father recently fell off of a company yacht while he was intoxicated, and his body was never recovered.  So we already have a deadly jump rope and a fatal cruise in one family.  We also see Danny’s mother, Karen Desai (Denise Richards), who clearly spent hours in hair and makeup for her brief cameo on the news.  I would like to take this moment to formally apologize for any of my complaints about the negativity on my local news channel.

Jo’s father drives her to school, and Jo finally admits that she is upset about Danny’s return to school and that she feels like suddenly she is eleven years old again.  When she gets out of the car, she sees that the school is surrounded by reporters.  She is greeted by her best friend, Rico (Ashton Moio), who is also concerned about the difficult day that awaits.  The only difference here is that Jo is worried about a murderer’s return to school and Rico is worried about a pre-calc quiz.  Jo puts Rico in his place by reminding him that a child murderer roaming the school hallways trumps a math quiz.  

Meanwhile, Lacey is walking towards the school with her two current best friends, Regina (Karynn Moore) and Sarita (Jamila Velasquez).  Regina informs Lacey that her “socio” line is trending on Twitter.  Fun fact: it was also trending on Twitter in real life. #Socio.  Lacey’s two best friends assure her that they have her back against Danny.  Inside the school, Lacey’s boyfriend, Archie (Grey Damon) tells her that he saw her on the news and that he thinks she’s sexy when she’s traumatized.  Wow, what a compliment!  He’s definitely a charmer.  Archie and Lacey’s other friends make fun of Jo’s appearance.  

Lacey approaches Jo to discuss Danny.  Then, she “invites” Jo to Regina’s party, by saying, “If you want, you can come.  I don’t care.”  Is Jo supposed to RSVP to that polite invitation?  This awkward conversation is abruptly interrupted when Danny arrives at school.  Regina thinks that he’s hot.  He walks up to Lacey and Jo and creepily says “boo!”  He claims that he is just kidding, but neither of the girls seem entertained.  Fortunately for the girls, this encounter is cut short by the principal (Rob Yang) who tells Danny to come to his office.  Danny wears an unfazed, “whatever, the principal’s office is nothing compared to juvie” look on his face.  He’s your regular dark, brooding, high school bad boy.  He just also happens to be a killer.   

The next scene is a meeting between the principal, Danny, and Danny’s mother.  Danny’s mother is clearly more excited about Danny’s return to Green Grove High School than Danny is.  The principal explains that he thinks Danny will be fine academically, but he might have a difficult time socially.  His mother insists that there won’t be any problems, and this conversation is met by Danny’s sarcastic banter.  “Yes, mother, I’m sure you’ll be running the PTA again by spring,” he promises.  Danny’s sarcasm is interrupted by the principal awkwardly hitting on Danny’s mother.  Did he really just say “am I right?” after calling Karen Desai beautiful?  Right, and Danny is the socially awkward one.  That sounds about right!  

After his lovely meeting in the principal’s office, Danny approaches Jo at her locker.  He tells her that he is nervous to be back at school and he begs her to chat.  Jo angrily blames him for her lost childhood and her “journey to post traumatic stress disorder.”  She demands to know Danny’s reason for killing his aunt, but Danny refuses to disclose that information.  He can never tell that to anybody, which makes everybody want to know what the reason is RIGHT NOW. 

Much to Jo’s dismay, when Danny asks her to direct him to his next class, she learns that he is in her psychology class.  The teacher, Mrs. Fisk (Kathy Najimi), uses Danny as her lesson plan for the day.  She informs him that his nickname on “The Twitter” is “Socio.”  Danny replies, “I guess I should get into this whole Twitter thing.”  “You should, it’s a delightful waste of time,” Mrs. Fisk tells him.  Is the username @Socio taken?  Lacey’s idiot of a boyfriend attempts to humiliate Danny in front of the class by telling Mrs. Fisk that the class is distracted because they’ve never seen a “real psycho” before.  In this class session, the students learn that sociopaths are good at mimicking human emotion.  This clearly makes Jo wonder if that’s exactly what Danny has been doing all day.  

Afterwards, in the school cafeteria, Lacey sits with her friends and they discuss Regina’s desire to have sex with Danny.  Regina beckons Danny to their table by screaming “Socio!” across the room.  She invites Danny to her party, and Danny is enjoying the conversation.  When Regina tells him that everyone will get over the whole murderer thing, he likens the school to “Glee” and says that he expects the students to break out into song any minute.  When Regina expresses surprise that Danny’s familiar with “Glee,” he tells her that watching the show was part of his punishment when he was in juvie.  His tone quickly turns creepy when he notices Regina’s necklace.  His reaction to it is incredibly strange, and he wants to know where she got the necklace.  He looks incredibly suspicious when he asks her, as if the necklace has frightened him somehow or brought up a bad memory for him.  He seems skeptical when Regina responds that she got the necklace as a gift. 

The next scene takes place at a diner where Jo and Rico are studying.  In reality, Rico is studying, and Jo is just a “lady who’s apparently ok with an A-minus on this problem set.”  Rico is definitely a nerd, but he’s hilarious.  When Danny walks into the diner, Rico warns Jo, “whatever you do, don’t turn around and then look up.”  Guess what Jo does next?  If you guessed that she turns around and looks up, you’re correct!  Danny approaches the table where Jo and Rico are sitting, and he echoes the words that Jo said to her father earlier, “It’s like suddenly I’m eleven again.”  Then, he introduces himself to Rico, who quickly and candidly responds, “Hi, I’m Rico.  I’m extraordinarily uncomfortable right now.”  When Danny leaves, Rico exclaims, “Oh, my god that was tense.  I feel like I just lived through a Hitchcock movie!”  His one-liners are already becoming an essential part of this show.  

Jo goes after Danny outside.  She wants him to stop trying to talk to her, which is all well and good, except that when he agrees to leave her alone, she continues talking to him.  She offers her condolences about Danny’s father, and Danny makes sociopath jokes and then invites Jo to accompany him to Regina’s party.  In two seconds they have gone from not speaking to partying together.

The next thing we know, Danny and Jo are walking into Regina’s party.  Jo explains that she doesn’t drink alcohol or mingle, but she came to the party so that she can tell her grandkids that she did something stupid in high school.  Regina is ecstatic to see that Danny accepted her invitation.  “Socio!  You came!” she shouts.  Then she drags Jo away to ask her “what’s up with [her] and Danny.”  Regina informs Jo that she wants Danny, but that she’s willing to “pass him to her after” because “sharing is caring.”  Regina then goes on to half-insult, half-compliment Jo by remarking, “You’re so cool- everyone is so wrong about you!”  Then she grabs drinks for the two of them and instructs Jo to “twirl it, swirl it, knock it down.”  And now we get to twirl and swirl and knock into:

Broken Law # 2 Alert! 

New York Alcoholic Beverage Control – Article 5 – § 65-C Unlawful Possession of an Alcoholic Beverage With the Intent to Consume by Persons Under the Age of Twenty-one Years (in relevant part): “No person under the age of twenty-one years shall possess any alcoholic beverage… with the intent to consume such beverage.”  There is an exception which allows people under the age of 21 to possess an alcoholic beverage with the intent to consume it if the alcoholic beverage was given to them by their parent or guardian.  (paraphrased).  However, since Regina had this party while her parents were out of town, and it does not appear that the alcohol was provided to her by her housekeeper, she would not likely fall into this exception, and neither would any of her underage guests.  

Grading: (in relevant part) “Any person who unlawfully possesses an alcoholic beverage with intent to consume may be summoned before and examined by a court having jurisdiction of that charge… If a determination is made sustaining such a charge the court may impose a fine not exceeding fifty dollars and/or completion of an alcohol awareness program… and/or an appropriate amount of community service not to exceed thirty hours…”

Although it’s rather tame compared to the murder premise in this show, anyone who is drinking underage at that party is not within New York law.  

Next, Danny approaches Lacey, who is with her friend, Sarita at the party.  Sarita calls Danny a stalker, and Danny calls Sarita out on her 5th grade facial hair issues.  He makes fun of some lazer surgery that Sarita supposedly got when she was younger.  Lacey comments that Jo is already following Danny like a puppy.  When he observes that she’s being harsh, she justifies her behavior.  “Didn’t you hear?  I’m a bitch now.”  Regina walks up to them and suggests that Lacey invite her boyfriend to the party so that there can be a “stud-off” between Socio and the Soccer captain.  Danny claims that his new nickname is catchy. 

Jo is completely wasted; this may or may not be her first time ever drinking.  Sarita convinces Jo to do a body shot off of Scott.  Then, Scott and Sarita physically try to make Jo take off her shirt.  Sarita claims that she has to do it and that it’s “Green Grove High School law.”  Sarita and Scott have a thing or two to learn about New York State’s REAL laws.  

Broken Law # 3 Alert!

While some might believe that Sarita and Scott’s behavior seems typical in the party scene, you’re actually not allowed to physically abuse people, EVEN at parties. Their behavior definitely places Jo in fear of being physically injured. 

New York Penal – Article 120 – § 120.15 Menacing in the Third Degree: 

“A person is guilty of menacing in the third degree when, by physical menace, he or she intentionally places or attempts to place another person in fear of death, imminent serious physical injury, or physical injury.

Menacing in the third degree is a class B misdemeanor.”  

What’s the main lesson here?  Don’t grab a girl and try to force her, violently, to remove her shirt when she clearly doesn’t want to.  It’s rather simple.  Oh, and another important lesson: “Green Grove High School Law” is a bunch of BS.  It’s becoming comical that the same people doing this to Jo are so concerned that a criminal attends their school.  If this is how they behave regularly, it’s surprising that they haven’t been to juvie as well.  

Additionally, Scott and Sarita could get nailed for:

Broken Law # 4 Alert!

New York Penal – Article 120 – § 120.20 Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree:
 “A person is guilty of reckless endangerment in the second degree when he recklessly engages in conduct which creates a substantial risk of serious physical injury to another person.  
Reckless endangerment in the second degree is a class A misdemeanor.”

While all of this is happening, Regina attempts to bring Danny to her room.  She uses the upfront approach of telling him that she has something to show him, then giving him a hint that, that “something” is her bed.  Fortunately for Jo, Danny does not take Regina up on this offer, and he notices what Scott and Sarita are doing to Jo and intervenes. 

When Danny gets Scott off of Jo, Scott tells him to mind his own business, then he calls Danny a freak.  This leads to a dramatic moment.  The party music immediately stops playing as Danny informs Scott that “freak” is a little too generic of an insult.  Scott then calls him “rope boy” and violently shoves Danny across the room.  Pretty soon everyone at school is going to be gossiping about Scott and giving him new nicknames if he keeps up this type of behavior.  

Broken Law # 5 Alert!

When Scott shoves Danny across the room, he is not obeying New York law.  

New York Penal – Article 120 – § 120.00 Assault in the Third Degree (in relevant part):  
“A person is guilty of assault in the third degree when:
with intent to cause physical injury to another person, he causes such injury to such person…”
“Assault in the third degree is a class A misdemeanor.”

So far, Scott seems more violent than the school’s resident Socio/Murderer.  

When Scott tries to get violent with Danny again, Danny grabs him and whispers something in his ear. We don’t get to hear what he said, but we see that it immediately gets Scott to back off.  Danny and Jo leave the party, and Jo asks Danny what he said to Scott.  Danny claims that he said “something about suing him for assault and winning.”  

Legal Comment/Broken Law # 6!

If Danny really wants to successfully sue Scott for something, it would be the tort of BATTERY rather than the tort of assault.  In New York, if someone is criminally guilty of assault, they can be found liable in tort for battery.  New York follows the 2nd restatement of torts in its definition for the tort of battery:

Tort of Battery (in relevant part): Sections 13 and 18 of the Restatement state that “an actor commits a battery if he acts intentionally… to cause a harmful or offensive contact…”  An offensive contact, under the restatement, is considered any contact with someone that was not permitted and would offend a reasonable person.  Conversely, in New York, the tort of assault would impose liability on someone for placing another in reasonable apprehension of imminent harmful or offensive conduct.  Essentially, in New York, the tort of assault places someone in fear of an imminent tort of battery. (paraphrased).  

After this night of wild partying, Lacey offers to give Jo and Danny a ride home.  When Jo gets home, she has not sobered up at all, and she drunkenly engages in conversation with her parents.  When she knocks on the door to her house and her parents open it for her, she greets them by crying out “Mom, dad!  You came!  Welcome!”  Jo is most definitely a light-weight.  Since Danny is so intimidating, he tries to boss Jo’s father around by telling him to try not to go too hard on her.  Jo’s version of what happened between Danny and Scott is entertaining to say the least.  She slurs to her parents that Scott tried to get her to take off her shirt and Danny said “get away from her, you suck!”  Drunk Jo is definitely funny even if her parents don’t appreciate it.  

After dropping Jo off at home, Danny bribes Lacy into his house with the promise of blue ranch potato chips.  He thanks her for saving him from an hour of tedious drunk walking.  Lacey describes how difficult Danny made her life, but Danny believes that deep down, Lacey misses her friendship with Jo and Danny.  He tells Lacey that he regrets not growing up with her and Jo.  Lacey proceeds to pass out in Danny’s room, cuddling the bag of blue ranch potato chips.  Her boyfriend would definitely not be happy about this!  

Then, we see that in his two days out of juvie, Danny has already gotten himself an iPhone.  He receives text messages from Regina, who invites him to come back to her house for “an after party of two.”  She’s incredibly persistent; she really wants to get him into that bed!  When Danny rejects this invitation, he receives another text from Regina, but this one is a lot more disturbing.  It reads: “Come over.  We have to talk.  I know why you killed your aunt.”  

The following morning, Lacey bolts out of Danny’s house while he is still asleep.  Danny’s mother sees her leaving, and is abnormally happy that his son had a girl spend the night.  Meanwhile, we see Jo in her room looking at an old picture of herself and Lacey and Danny.  Then, Regina’s housekeeper finds Regina on the floor… DEAD!  Jo goes to Danny’s house to thank him for rescuing her from the “wannabe rapist jock douche” formerly known as Scott.  Danny’s mother is happy to see Jo, and exclaims that she’s “So big.  Not in a fat way but in a grown up way.”  Um, thanks?  Then, a story about Regina’s death comes on the news at Danny’s house.  As Danny watches this with his mother and Jo, we can tell that Jo is wondering if Danny could be the one who killed Regina.  

At school, Lacey mourns the loss of Regina with her other friends.  Archie and Scott insist to Lacey that Danny is definitely the person who killed Regina.  Scott claims that Danny threatened to kill him and “enjoy it like he did last time” if he didn’t get away from Jo at the party.  Then, there’s an assembly in Regina’s honor at the school.  The students begin chanting “Socio!”  They clearly suspect that Danny is guilty of murdering Regina.  Jo’s father and two other police officers interrupt the assembly to take Danny in for questioning.  Jo stands up and gives a speech to her fellow students about how they shouldn’t jump to any conclusions about Danny.  Jo and Lacey argue in the hallway afterwards.  Jo is upset that Lacey doesn’t want to help her stand up for Danny.  Jo believes that Lacey cares way too much about her high school social status.  

Jo’s father questions Danny about the text messages he received from Regina.  He also shows Danny a picture of Regina’s necklace and asks him if it looks familiar.  Danny says that it doesn’t.  Jo’s father informs Danny that he asked about the necklace because Regina’s housekeeper said that Regina never took that necklace off, yet it was the only item missing from the house after Regina’s death.  Danny comments that this sounds like a burglary gone wrong.  

Legal Comment/ Broken Law # 7!

Actually, if the person responsible for Regina’s murder and the theft of her necklace was NOT Danny, this sounds more like a burglary gone RIGHT, in New York.  

New York Penal – Article 140 – § 140.30 Burglary in the First Degree (in relevant part): 
 “A person is guilty of burglary in the first degree when he knowingly enters or remains unlawfully in a dwelling with intent to commit a crime therein, and when, in effecting entry or while in the dwelling or in immediate flight therefrom, he… causes physical injury to any person who is not a participant in the crime.”  
“Burglary in the first degree is a class B felony.” 

If Danny IS responsible for this, then his comment about a “burglary gone wrong” would be more accurate, because he wouldn’t have been in Regina’s dwelling unlawfully, because she invited him over.  However, assuming somebody else, who Regina did not give permission to enter, did this, that person would be guilty of burglary, because that person would have unlawfully entered Regina’s dwelling with the intent to commit a crime therein (kill Regina, steal the necklace).  Then, the person would have met the next requirement, because Regina was physically injured (ore more accurately, Regina was KILLED).  

Jo’s father’s questioning of Danny is cut short when Danny’s mother and her lawyers arrive at the police station.  Afterwards, Danny talks to Jo about the speech she gave in his defense during the assembly.  He also tells her about the text messages he got from Regina, and he still refuses to tell Jo his reason for killing his aunt.  He says that he is protecting Jo by not telling her this information.  He swears that he is not the one who killed Regina, and he needs Jo to trust him.  He gives her the perfect reason to trust him, too.  “I may have killed someone before, but I never lied to you,” he insists.  How comforting and convincing!  

At the end of the episode, Danny’s mother comes into his room as he is looking at an old picture of himself and his father.  Danny’s mother says that she believes that he is innocent.  She tells him that if he doesn’t feel comfortable in this town and at this school, they can find somewhere else to live and start over.  Danny doesn’t think this is a good idea.  He explains, “I haven’t brushed up on my criminal law lately, but I think fleeing town might make me look guilty.”  Maybe Danny should be the one writing this blog!  

At the very end of the episode, we see Danny looking at an old picture from when he was 4 years old.  It’s a picture of him and his aunt Tara, who he allegedly killed.  In the picture, his aunt is wearing the exact same necklace that Regina had — the necklace which is now missing.  Then, we see that the necklace is now in Danny’s bedroom.  We are left in a state of complete suspense, wondering if Danny killed Regina and then took the necklace from her house, or if there is some other explanation for all of this.  Maybe we will find out more information in the second episode of “Twisted,” which airs tonight on ABC Family, right after “Pretty Little Liars.”  Stay tuned!

A is For A-L-I-V-E … and A-R-R-E-S-T if You Keep Breaking The Law (Pretty Little Liars Season 4 Episode 1 Recap + Broken Laws)

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This episode begins right where the Season 3 finale ended.  The girls and Mona are standing by Wilden’s car which has mysteriously emerged from the lake.  Since Mona is “Hannibal Lecter Smart,” as Hanna put it, she puts on her pretty black gloves.  The other girls just brilliantly decide to decorate the stolen cop car with their fingerprints before opening the trunk.  As soon as the trunk is open, all 5 girls are greeted by a dead pig.  Apparently, “A” wants them to know that this is serious business; now pig slaughter is involved.  Aria is probably really content with her vegan eating habits right about now.

Spencer notices that Mona is out of the girls’ sight and the girls freak out and immediately assume that she set them up.

Although it’s not an outrageous assumption, Hanna realizes that Mona is inside Wilden’s car frantically messing with the magic computer inside.  I refer to it as the magic computer because it has survived being submerged under water without any damage to it or its contents.  I want information about the software on this thing!  When Hanna asks Mona what she’s doing in there, Mona replies, “saving your mom.”  That sounds all well and good, but unfortunately, by “saving,” Mona means that she is stealing evidence from a police car.  That’s right, we’re two minutes into the fourth season of Pretty Little Liars, and Mona is already bringing us to:

Broken Law # 1 Alert!

18 Pa.C.S. § 4911.  Tampering with public records or information. (in relevant part)
“(a)  Offense defined.–A person commits an offense if he:   (1)  knowingly makes a false entry in, or false alteration of, any record, document or thing belonging to, or received or kept by, the government for information or record, or required by law to be kept by others for information of the government; … or (3)  intentionally and unlawfully destroys, conceals, removes or otherwise impairs the verity or availability of any such record, document or thing.”  
 (b)  Grading.–An offense under this section is a misdemeanor of the second degree unless the intent of the actor is to defraud or injure anyone, in which case the offense is a felony of the third degree.”

Since Mona is stealing this evidence from a police car that she knows belongs to Detective Wilden, a law enforcement officer who works for the government, she has violated this law.  In my opinion, she did this with the intent to defraud someone, so she’d get the felony of the third degree charge, but otherwise, it’s a misdemeanor of the second degree. 

Hanna urges Mona to hurry up, while the other girls start the car so that they can bolt from the scene of the crime as quickly as possible.  Leaving the scene of the crime?  Wait a minute, that does not sound right.  All of the girls are already breaking the law again.  In case anyone was worried that the PLLs were going to start abiding by the law, the girls are rapidly showing us otherwise.

Broken Law # 2 Alert!

18 Pa.C.S. § 5126.  Flight to avoid apprehension, trial or punishment.
 (a)  Offense defined.–A person who willfully conceals  himself or moves or travels within or outside this Commonwealth with the intent to avoid apprehension, trial or punishment commits a felony of the third degree when the crime which he has been charged with or has been convicted of is a felony and commits a misdemeanor of the second degree when the crime which he has been charged with or has been convicted of is a misdemeanor.”  

Great start to the season, girls!  Keep it coming!

The girls have a slumber party at Spencer’s house, where they turn on the news to see if there are any press releases about Wilden’s car.  Luckily for them though, the news seems to only be covering the fire at the lodge, because as Hanna puts it, “a fire trumps a dead pig.”  

Mona attempts to act like the girls’ new BFF.  She assures Aria that the police are not coming to arrest them.  Aria doesn’t trust Mona and Emily reminds Mona that she’s lucky the girls aren’t beating the crap out of her.  Now it’s time for the girls to gossip, AKA play an entertaining game called “The 3rd Degree.”  The girls demand answers from Mona.  

Some of the answers she gives the girls include: 1) Mona did not get Wilden’s car out of the lake, but she DID put the car in Hanna’s garage. 2) Shana knew Jenna before she came to Rosewood, may be in love with her, and both of them are afraid of Melissa. 3) When CeCe came to Radley, Mona thought that she was Ali at first, and because of her medication, does not remember what they talked about.  4) Lucas gave Emily the not-at-all soothing massage she got (we knew that it couldn’t have been Mona or Toby).  5) Mona recruited Toby to the A team when he got his job in Bucks County.  6) She didn’t push Ian off of the bell tower and she doesn’t know who did.  

Answers 1) and 4) constitute broken laws which I will now discuss, because although they did not occur in this episode, this is the episode where we learned who was responsible for the acts. 

Broken Law # 3 Alert!

Tort of Battery (in relevant part) Pennsylvania follows the Restatement (Second) of Torts.  Sections 13 and 18 of the Restatement state that “an actor commits a battery if he acts intentionally… to cause a harmful or offensive contact…”

An offensive contact is considered any contact with someone that was not permitted, and would offend a reasonable person.  Lucas would be liable for battery for giving Emily that massage.  Emily did not give LUCAS permission to give her a massage; she thought she was getting a massage from a professional.  A reasonable person would be offended by contact of this kind.  

Apparently when Lucas isn’t taking yearbook pictures, he’s out breaking the law. 

Broken Law # 4 Alert! 

18 Pa.C.S. §  3925: theft by receiving stolen property (in relevant part).
“(a)  Offense defined.–A person is guilty of theft if he intentionally receives, retains, or disposes of movable property of another knowing that it has been stolen, or believing that it has probably been stolen, unless the property is received, retained, or disposed with intent to restore it to the owner.”

Mona is guilty of violating this law because she stole Wilden’s car from the scene of the accident and put it in Hanna’s garage.  The fact that she left the car on somebody’s private property makes her guilty of breaking other laws as well:

Broken Law # 5 Alert!

75 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 3712
” (b)  Abandonment on public or private property.–No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any public or private property without the express or implied consent of the owner or person in lawful possession or control of the property.”


Broken Law # 6 Alert!

75 Pa. Const. Stat. § 3717.  Trespass by motor vehicle.
 “(a)  General rule.–It is unlawful for a person to knowingly operate a motor vehicle on private real property other than a private road or driveway without consent of the owner or lessor of the real property.”

Mona didn’t just abandon Wilden’s car on the Marin’s property, she operated it in their garage; she left the car on and the video playing on a loop.  

Mona once said, “Call me guilty!” and she is making it extremely easy to abide by that request right now. 

Sometime after Mona’s confessions, the girls realize that they had passed out and that Mona has left the house.  Any time Mona is more than 3 feet away from the girls, they freak out and think that Mona has set them up, put drugs in their drinks and poisoned their food.  Where was all of this protective instinct when the girls didn’t know who “A” was?  Interestingly enough, while the girls continuously think that Mona is trying to set them up, they also seem to believe her stories. 

Mona walks back into the house carrying something, but it’s not the hand grenade that the girls are expecting.  Coffee is on her, and after being “A” for so long, she knows how each girl likes their lattes and chai tea! Nobody accuses her of poisoning the coffee, because the PLLs, especially Spencer, are caffeine addicts.  Mona explains that she “borrowed” Emily’s car and that she has her own set of car keys for it.  In case any of us needed a ride to the next broken law, Mona’s driving!

Broken Law # 7 Alert!

18 Pa.C.S. §  § 3928.  Unauthorized use of automobiles and other vehicles.
 “(a)  Offense defined.–A person is guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree if he operates the automobile, airplane, motorcycle, motorboat, or other motor-propelled vehicle of another without consent of the owner.”

If anyone is curious, we are only 5 minutes into the episode at this point.  Mona is giving us a LOT more material.  

Hanna wants the chip that Mona has, but Mona says that she cannot give it to her until they find out who the phantom person in the Red Coat is.  “Like it or not, we’re in this together,” she proclaims.  The girls want Mona to prove her loyalty to them.  Are they going to make her kidnap a 7 year old child?  Apparently that’s Mona’s idea of loyalty.  The girls are looking for something different, though.  They want to see everything that Mona has on them.  “Mi casa es su casa,” Mona agrees to take the girls to her lair, and Spencer has to translate the Spanish phrase to Hanna.  

On their way to the lair, the girls see that the area surrounding Detective Wilden’s car has become a huge crime scene now.  “All this for a muddy cop car and a dead pig?”  Hanna wonders.  It turns out that it’s for a lot more than that; Wilden is DEAD.  Mona realizes that the text “A” sent the girls in the season 3 finale that said “your mine now” means that the girls are going to be framed for Wilden’s murder.

Next, we see Toby who is still hiding in the bushes by the lodge that was set on fire in the season 3 finale. He sees a fireman pull a burned red jacket (is it THE red coat?!) out of the rubble.  He is also fiddling with the lighter that presumably was used to set the fire, providing the Rosewood Law Enforcement with any proof that they might need that he was present at the scene of the crime.  Really, Toby?  Playing with a lighter at the scene of an arson?  Actually, Toby is not just playing with the lighter; he runs off with it, taking what most likely is evidence of the crime away from the crime scene without informing the police of its existence.  The A-Team is really racking up broken laws here.

Broken Law # 8 Alert! 

18 Pa.C.S. § 4910.  Tampering with or fabricating physical evidence (in relevant part).
“A person commits a misdemeanor of the second degree if, believing that an official proceeding or investigation is  pending or about to be instituted, he: (1)  alters, destroys, conceals or removes any record, document or thing with intent to impair its verity or availability in such proceeding or investigation”

Toby is a smart guy; he definitely knew that taking that lighter away from the lodge would hinder the investigation.  Come on, Toby.  You’re supposed to be Rosewood’s moral compass!  

Meanwhile, it’s a fiesta in A’s lair.  Hanna, a fiesta is a party.  The girls discuss the fact that Red Coat (who some of the girls believe is Alison) is playing with them as if they’re mice or dolls.  Emily refuses to believe that Alison is playing with them.  She seems to be the only one in the group who says out loud that Alison is dead. 

Hanna realizes that Mona was the person on the Halloween train who dressed up in the same costume as Caleb.  Mona snidely responds to this realization with “To think we were this close to our first kiss.”  Aria furiously accuses Mona of being the person who tried to kill her on the train, too.  Mona insists that she was not the person who did that, and she has proof in the form of video surveillance of the people who DID put Aria in the box.  Wait a minute, is Mona ALLOWED to have the videos that are stored in the computer in A’s lair?  The following broken law applies to the video Mona shows the girls of the Halloween train activities, along with any other similar surveillance that the A team has collected:

Broken Law # 9 Alert! 

18 Pa.C.S. Interception, disclosure or use of wire, electronic or oral communications.
“Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, a person is guilty of a felony of the third degree if he:
(1)  intentionally intercepts, endeavors to intercept, or procures any other person to intercept or endeavor to intercept any wire, electronic or oral communication;
(2)  intentionally discloses or endeavors to disclose to any other person the contents of any wire, electronic or oral communication, or evidence derived therefrom, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of a wire, electronic or oral communication; or
(3)  intentionally uses or endeavors to use the contents of any wire, electronic or oral communication, or evidence derived therefrom, knowing or having reason to know, that the information was obtained through the interception of a wire, electronic or oral communication.”

I suppose we can’t be too shocked that the A team has committed some felonies along the way.  

When Mona shows the girls the video from the Halloween party, she tells the girls that the two people in the video are the ones who put Aria in the box.  The video reveals Wilden in a Queen of Hearts costume screaming at another person in a Queen of Hearts costume.  In the video, Wilden tells the other Queen of Hearts to “just leave her” (presumably referring to Aria) because “Garrett is going to tell them everything and we can’t let that happen.”

The second Queen of Hearts is still disguised on the video, and Mona tells the girls that it’s Melissa Hastings.  Before she can prove it by continuing to play the video, somebody mysteriously deletes all of Mona’s files from the computer.  The Halloween Costume Shop where Shana works definitely got a lot of business this year from a bunch of people who nobody trusts.  

Then, the girls hear creepy girls that look like younger versions of themselves, playing with creepy toy dolls who “coincidentally” are named, Aria, Hanna, Spencer, Emily, and Mona.  The little girls tell Mona that her “friend Alison” gave them the dolls.  

Later, at Emily’s house, Hanna talks to Mona on the phone and agrees to help her hide the RV.  Hanna explains to Emily that “Mona just wants to get rid of the RV so [they] can all get rid of it together,” and that Hanna is going to drive her to do it.  This plan makes Hanna and Mona guilty of: 

Broken Law # 10 Alert! 

18 Pa. C.S. § 903.  Criminal conspiracy.
(a)  Definition of conspiracy.–A person is guilty of conspiracy with another person or persons to commit a crime if with the intent of promoting or facilitating its commission he:
(1)  agrees with such other person or persons that they or one or more of them will engage in conduct which constitutes such crime or an attempt or solicitation to commit such crime; or
(2)  agrees to aid such other person or persons in the planning or commission of such crime or of an attempt or solicitation to commit such crime.

The crime they are conspiring to commit can be found above in this entry under Broken Law # 8  Alert (tampering with or fabricating physical evidence).  

Pam walks in and brings Emily and Hanna’s discussion about Mona to a halt.  She’s talking about “Poor Wilden” and the fact that there were witnesses, but she “didn’t know what they saw.”  She’s trying to comfort the girls, but she’s inadvertently scaring them instead.  Also, when Pam took that job at the police station, she didn’t quit her day job as a welcome wagon lady.  She tells Emily and Hanna that Mrs. DiLaurentis is moving back into her old house and is doing well despite what is going on with Wilden.  She gives Emily a gift basket to bring to Mrs. DiLaurentis.  Hanna’s new theory is that Mrs. DiLaurentis came back to Rosewood because she knows that Ali is alive.

Spencer and Toby make what Mona would call a “rookie mistake” by returning to a crime scene (the lodge where the fire happened).  Toby discourages going inside the lodge and reminds Spencer that Ali died 2 years ago.  No wonder he and Emily get along so well.

Emily brings the basket to Mrs. DiLaurentis.  Mrs. D is “freakishly like Ali,” as the girls would say.  She behaves exactly like Ali to the point that it’s disturbing.  Whoever the DiLaurentis family uses as a moving company must be filthy rich by now.  Also, apparently Emily always gets stuck helping people bring boxes upstairs in that house.  Emily is creeped out by the “shrine” Mrs. D is making for Ali. 

Next, we see Mona and Hanna hiding the RV.  Mona thanks Hanna for helping her, and Hanna says that “there’s stuff in there that could bring [them] all down.”  They’ve now completed the crime that they conspired to commit, and are guilty of both, conspiracy as stated above, and:

Broken Law # 11 Alert! 

See: Broken Law # 8 Alert (tampering with or fabricating physical evidence).  

The same applies here, except instead of Toby, Hanna and Mona are the guilty parties.  

Mona misses the glory days when Hanna + Mona equaled “us.”  Scenes between Hanna and Mona are beginning to look like scenes a former couple would have.  Speaking of scenes involving former couples, the next scene features Aria and Ezra.  They engage in incredibly awkward small-talk, and Ezra informs Aria that he will be working full time at her school again.  He rubs in Aria’s face that he “has a family now.”  When Aria leaves, she refers to him as “Mr. Fitz.” I’d be willing to bet that something about “Ezria” was trending worldwide on twitter during this part of the episode. 

Meanwhile, Boyfriend– I mean Toby is cooking breakfast for Spencer as she obsessively scours the newspaper article about Wilden’s death. Toby reminds Spencer how to use a fork and tries to be subtle about suggesting caffeine rehab.  Spencer reads about Wilden being shot multiple times and somebody moving his body.  What is it with this town and moving dead bodies?  It’s like a sport here!  Toby receives a text from A.  A picture of Toby’s mother is attached, and the text reads, “Bet you miss her every day. Kisses.”  Now it’s time for some role reversal; when Spencer asks Toby if he’s ok, he lies to her about “A,” just like Spencer always lied to him.  

At school, Emily reminds Aria of the concept of a double date, but Aria is too busy staring at Ezra to pay too much attention.  The Vice Principal is staring at Aria too.  In the hallway, Hanna tells Mona about her nightmares of Wilden with a pig face, and they reminisce about the days when they would go shopping together.  They make a rendezvous to go to Macy’s later. 

Aria gets called to the Vice Principal’s office, where she finds out that Ezra Fitz is getting arrested for having sex with a minor.  This only happens in Aria’s imagination, though; really, the Vice Principal just had some papers for her to give to Ella.  Paige wants Emily to come to college in California with her so that she can become an interior decorator and eat donuts without A watching.  Emily says yes, and they say “I love you” to each other.  

At Hanna’s house, Mona and Hanna talk about the latest fashion trends — they both still love talking about clothes–  and Mona explains that being a stalking mental patient hasn’t gotten her many dates.  She tells Hanna that she knows that she’s only pretending to be her friend again.  She still gives Hanna the chip that she wanted and tells her that it’s the only copy.  Mona says, in the past tense, that she really loved Hanna once and she really was her friend.  Does that mean Mona was just pretending to be friends with Hanna again, too?  Well then, at least they’re being honest about their lies.  

Jenna spies on Emily as she gives Paige her goodnight kiss.  Jenna needs a favor from Emily; she wants for Emily to give Toby a message for Jenna if anything ever happens to her.  Jenna wants Toby to know that she never meant to hurt him. When Emily asks Jenna if she burned herself, Jenna tries to conceal a mysterious injury.  Maybe it’s just another red herring injury like Lucas and Jason’s leg injuries.  Jenna points out that everyone who saw Alison the night she went missing is “waking up dead.”  She explains that Garrett told her that Wilden saw Ali that night also.  The girls and Toby saw Ali the night she disappeared, too.  Under Jenna’s theory, does that mean that they’re all going to die, too?  Or is Jenna only referring to an elite clique of dead people?  

Spencer looks out her window and into Ali’s old bedroom, only to find Mrs. DiLaurentis staring back at her.  That’s not creepy or anything.  Spencer gets a text from “A” that says “Closed caskets keep secrets.  His is open and exposes yours.  Kisses, bitches.”  A clipping of Wilden’s obituary is attached to the text.  

When the girls get to Wilden’s funeral, the place is packed.  Spencer gives Hanna a science lesson about embalming dead bodies.  The girls see someone at the funeral who is disguised in a black, lace outfit with her face hidden.  Another person in an enigmatic disguise!  They want to know who it is.  Maybe it’s Melissa, considering that she has been behind all of the secret costumes in this show so far.  Ezra brought Maggie as his date to Wilden’s funeral.  

Spencer comes up with one of her million dollar ideas; the girls should split up (AT A FUNERAL) to search for Wilden’s casket.  Spencer and Mona find it; apparently Mona received the same text message about Wilden’s casket.  Spencer and Mona hear a cell phone ringing from inside the casket.  I wonder what cell phone company provides such good signal inside a casket.  Spencer opens the casket, moves Wilden a tiny bit, and retrieves the phone.  

Potential Broken Law # 12 Alert!

 18 Pa.C.S. § 5510.  Abuse of corpse.
“Except as authorized by law, a person who treats a corpse in a way that he knows would outrage ordinary family sensibilities commits a misdemeanor of the second degree.” 

I labeled this as a “potential broken law,” because it depends on whether or not a court determined that Spencer’s movement of Wilden’s body to get the phone amounted to behavior that would outrage ordinary family sensibilities. 

When Mona and Spencer look through the phone, they find that it has missed calls from blocked numbers and a contact named “Kisses.”  Spencer redials “kisses,” and Hanna answers on the other end. The girls realize that the phone Spencer found in Wilden’s casket belongs to Hanna’s mother.  Why on Earth was it in Wilden’s casket, and why on Earth was Hanna’s name “kisses” in her mother’s phone?  Did Ashley do that?  Or was it Wilden or “A?”  Hanna believes that her mother is the next person that “A” is going to target.  

Alison’s mother comes up to the girls at the funeral.  She makes an odd comment about Hanna’s weight loss, then she asks the girls to sit next to her in the Church.  A guy that we haven’t been introduced to walks Jenna into the Church; Jenna is wearing her Gucci sunglasses indoors again.  Has she lost her vision again?  Is she pretending that she’s lost her vision again?  Who knows with this girl?  During the funeral, the girls see the mysterious woman in the black lace, again, and continue to wonder who she is.  

Then we see Toby driving the A-Team lair, and it looks like tears are coming out of those “pretty eyes.”  He has received another “A” text: “I know what happened 2 ur mom.  Bring the lair and u’ll know 2.  Kisses.”  It seems this “A” likes shorthand.  Toby has a flashback of a time when he and Ali were friends, or at least friendlier than any other interaction we’ve seen between those two.  Toby and Ali almost kiss, but Toby’s mother who looks frail, sick, and exhausted, walks in before they can.  When Toby tells Ali that he thinks something is wrong with his mother, she rudely chalks it up to laziness.  When Toby asks Ali to leave, she does, but not before calling him a loser.  Then, in present time, we see Toby walk into the woods with a sad look on his face.

Back at the Church, the girls learn that there’s a new cop in town.  His name is Officer Holbrook and he’s investigating Garrett and Wilden’s murders.  He agrees with the girls that Wilden’s behavior towards them was inappropriate, or at least he says that he agrees with them.  Maybe he’s secretly sleeping with one of their enemies, or maybe he’s being honest.  He reminds the girls that he’s “one of the good guys” and that he’s “there to find the truth.”  Of course, “A” is always watching, and right on cue, all 5 girls receive a text: “The truth won’t set you free.  I’m going to bury you with it.  Kisses, A.”  A video is attached to the message, which reveals that “A” recorded the girls stealing the evidence from Wilden’s car and then fleeing the scene.  

At the end, Mystery Girl in the Black Lace is wearing black gloves and an “Ali” mask that looks as if it was severely burned — maybe in the fire in the season 3 finale.  She’s carrying a doll, and probably plenty of other secrets that will keep us guessing throughout season 4.  We’ll see what kind of mischief the girls get caught up in next week! 

Pretty Little Twisted Patience

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My entries on PLL and Twisted will be up ASAP.  My post about the 1st episode of season 4 of Pretty Little Liars should be up by tonight 6/13 or tomorrow, with the post about Twisted closely following.

Spoiler Alert: 5 minutes into the PLL episode, we will have already discussed 7 broken laws.  Stay tuned!


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Effective next week, in addition to Pretty Little Liars, I’ll be covering ABC Family’s new show, Twisted.  If any of you have any other shows that you’d like to see covered on this blog, let me know in the comments!