Synopsis 05×23: After Joan finds than Shinwell is dead she decides to continue his fight to bring down SPK. Meanwhile, Sherlock grapples with a mysterious woman who refuses to stay out of his business.
Back at the brownstone Sherlock commended Joan for being so forgiving and told her it was not her fault. She clarified that she did not feel guilty, she felt angry. She refused to believe his path had been a dead end. Despite what he had done, he was determined to bring down the gang and was doing so selflessly. That had to mean something.
Joan decided they would pursue the case and finish Shinwell’s work. They talked with Detective Guzman from the gang squad, who gave them all the information he had on the leadership. At the top was a gentleman named Bonzi Folsom who had been untouchable since he was underage. Shinwell was the third informant they had lost trying to investigate and bring down SPK. After browsing through financial records Sherlock thought their “in” would be through Bonzi’s brother by leaning on him with threats about their mother’s tax returns.
In the midst of it Sherlock had to duck out to go to a meeting. At the meeting he shared obliquely about Shinwell’s death and said that it reminded him he needed to try harder with his own recovery. Across the group was a young woman who approached him afterward, offering to listen, claiming she knew the look on his face meant there was more going on than he shared. Sherlock told her about another arrest he had helped make without having seen the crime scene. The suspect killed himself while being held in jail claiming his innocence, making Sherlock wonder if he had gotten it wrong.
Joan and Marcus went to talk with Tyus, Bonzi’s brother, who is a complex structure analyst and appears to have stayed out of his brother’s gang activity. He claimed he had nothing to do with his brother’s business. They had not even talked in two years. He insinuated that the detectives were barking up the wrong tree and that he “didn’t know that man any better than [they] do.”
Given the dead end, they looked at Bonzi and came to the conclusion that he was using his social media account to pass messages to his gang. It would explain a lot, since very few people come and go from his apartment and he rarely leaves. Joan suggested that the codes were in the image titles. Before they could go much deeper they received a call from Bonzi claiming he had information on Shinwell’s murder. When they showed up for the information he directed them to Tall Boy, who of course was brought in and refused to be a rat, leaving them back at square one.
Trying to decode Bonzi’s messages, Sherlock brought in an enigma machine because he had noticed the same one in Bonzi’s apartment. Moments later Sherlock’s friend from AA appeared at the station and he took her into a private room away from everyone. She said she wanted to check in on him, he said he was fine and was back to believing they had the right killer. He explained that the suspect had killed her in someone’s yard with a chain from a swing then moved the body. With that out of the way he told her to not come to the station ever again.
Sherlock actually slept while Joan stayed up for once, fueled by her desire to do right by Shinwell. She was able to decode the messages and suggested they set up a sting operation to prove they had decoded them properly. Of course Bonzi was a step ahead of them and the sting operation went south. He also deleted his social media accounts and the DA refused to give Gregson the go-ahead. They needed more proof.
After they went through the archived social media messages they found some names stated plainly that appeared to have nothing to do with the gang. Instead they seemed to be tied to the financial world and that led them to put Tyus and Bonzi together. The two of them were working together, some of the messages coming through a masked IP address while others came straight from Bonzi’s. Of course Tyus once again refuted any claim that he was connected to his brother.
The only useful information they got was from Tyus’ response to the name Carol Logan, a woman brutally raped and killed which was out of character for the other killings. Bonzi apparently saw Carol the night she was killed. He most likely killed her and had his men cover it up, which meant they might be able to get Bonzi on that murder and compel a DNA sample.
Sherlock took a break and followed up on the other crime he had spoken with his AA friend about, calling the detective on the case to come get the chains. When they arrived the chains were gone. The detective assured Sherlock that a tip had come from, they assumed, him, and the chains were in evidence and being processed. Sherlock seemed very disturbed by that because he had not sent the message, or at least did not remember sending it.
With a warrant for Bonzi’s DNA in hand, Joan, Marcus, and a crew of officers showed up at his apartment only to find him being rushed off to the hospital. He took a bad bump of cocaine and ended up in a vegetative state. It looked like he received a hotshot – cocaine laced with bleach – and they immediately accused his brother of the crime. Tyus subtly threatened them, saying if he was really the one who did all of that then they should be worried about what he might do to them. It was clear that Tyus was the real mastermind behind SPK.
Sherlock confronted his friend from AA, listed in the credits as “May,” and told her she needed to stop meddling. She had a response of her own: people who love each other don’t make threats, they make promises. Whether she is real or a hallucination, it was clear from Jonny Lee Miller’s performance during that scene that Sherlock Holmes is definitely Not Okay™.