As our daydream continues, we find a woman in a church praying. She finishes her prayers and then begins walking up the aisle towards the door when she notices someone else sitting in a pew. She stops and offers help to the stranger who seems distressed. The man doesn’t talk to her but continues fidgeting with his fingers and mumbling something. She listens to the creepy feeling in her gut and excuses herself, leaving the man alone in the church sanctuary. A short time later, a priest emerges from his office and prepares to close the church for the evening. In the dimly lit sanctuary, he does not see the hooded figure lurking just outside his peripheral vision. The hooded figure grabs the priest from behind and cuts his throat.
The NCI team is on the scene of the brutal murder of a priest. There doesn’t seem to be any CCTV footage even though this is the first public murder from the broken knife killer. Ki Hyung sends Min Young and Sun Woo to hear the witness statement of the woman who was at the church earlier that evening. Meanwhile, Ki Hyung, Lee Han, and Hyun Joon examine the murder scene. Hyun Joon notices that blood is pooled underneath the cloth around the victim’s eyes, indicating that the cloth was placed over his eyes following his death. In another room, the only witness says she remembers that the strange man in the church sanctuary was constantly moving his fingers as though he were playing the piano. She did not see his face since he was wearing a hood that covered most of his face. Back at the murder scene, Lee Han asks another detective to show him the blade that is embedded in the victim’s ear. As he examines the blade, Na Hwang calls Ki Hyung and tells him that the priest had been accused of child molestation. Parents who stood by the priest gathered petition signatures and eventually the charges were dropped. When Ki Hyung, Sun Woo, and Min Young return to the murder scene, they find Lee Han in full concentration mode. He tells the team that he will go back to his office first, as he has something he needs to check on there. Ki Hyung sends Min Young with him.
Outside, Hyun Joon calls Na Hwang and asks if the other victims had ever been charged with a crime. It turns out that each of them had some criminal record but each of them was eventually found innocent or were given significantly reduced sentences. Hyun Joon returns to the church sanctuary and tells the rest of the team what he has discovered. Ki Hyung agrees that the victims are being targeted for evading justice.
Back at NCI headquarters, Lee Han goes to Na Hwang’s office to show her what he’s found. The blade inside the priest’s ear has a pattern on it. It is a “baraegi” or goblin pattern, used to drive away evil spirits since the Unified Silla period. The pattern is still used in modern architecture. Finding one on the murder weapon seems to indicate that the killer believes that he must conquer some sort evil.
Ki Hyung and Hyun Joon brief the other officers about their findings. Now they understand that he is blindfolding the victims as a representation of Lady Justice who is meant to be blind to social status or wealth. However, unlike other countries, where Lady Justice is blindfolded, in Korea, she does not have a blindfold. Ki Hyung also feels that the culprit probably works somewhere within the justice system.
Ki Hyung tells the gathered officers that the murderer will be unassuming in appearance and he uses his ordinary looks as his cover. Sun Woo expresses how important it is that the details of the case be kept a secret for now. If the killer believes that he is being praised for his crimes, he will only increase how many he kills. The words are still hanging in the air when Min Young receives a phone call. There has been another murder. The team also receives a tip about a possible victim. Hyun Joon and Sun Woo go to intercept the potential victim before she is murdered as well. Before Hyun Joon and Sun Woo can leave, Min Young comes into the conference room and turns on the television. A pretty reporter is spilling every single detail about the case. And it isn’t only her but every station in Korea has information about the murders. The teams plan to keep the investigation on the down low has just been destroyed and their time clock for catching the killer before he kills again has been dramatically reduced.
The female witness, whose testimony allowed a killer to walk free, walk home casually with headphones in her ears. She walks into her building and doesn’t notice the hooded figure following her. (Just a tip: NEVER wear both earpieces in your ears….EVER!!) Once inside her building, she becomes aware that she is being followed but it is too late. The hooded figure drags her into a stairwell as she screams. Fortunately for her, Hyun Joon and Sun Woo have arrived just in time. They hear her screams and burst through the stairwell doors just before the hooded man stabs her to death. Hyun Joon quickly disarms the man and has him in handcuffs while Sun Woo protects the witness. What they miss is the hooded man with the jittery fingers standing halfway up the next set of stairs.
Back at NCI headquarters, Ki Hyun and Hyun Joon interrogate the man. He is Gong Hyung Kyu and he works for a private security company at a bank. He was robbed last year and received medical treatment. Since that time he has been behaving strangely. Min Young asks how the interrogation is going and Sun Woo tells her that Hyung Kyu has confessed to every crime. Ki Hyung begins to question the man and he boldly gives reasons why each victim deserved to die. Ki Hyung asks him why he stabbed the priest in the heart. The suspect goes on and on about how he wishes he had choked him and not killed him so simply but Ki Hyung stops him. The priest was not stabbed in the heart. This man is not their killer. Ki Hyung leaves the copycat to Hyun Joon. Hyun Joon asks Hyung Kyu if he was that desperate to be a star. He then gathers his folders and leaves the faker alone. He is merely an imposter who wants to take credit for the crimes.
Hyun Joon talks with Na Hwang and she cannot find anything about the victims that overlap except that all of their cases were tried through the same court. Meanwhile, Lee Han and Min Young confront the reporter who broke the story. He is unrepentant and says he will only help if he can get an interview with Ki Hyung.
Hyun Joon and Sun Woo go to the eastern district court to look for clues. They question a few court employees and don’t get very far. All of the employees watch criminals walk on a daily basis and although they would want them punished, none of them would turn into murderers to do it. As they talk to other court employees, they fail to notice the court stenographer who meekly sits at his desk just below the judge’s bench.
The NCI team asks the reporter what he knows about the different murder victims and he is very familiar with their cases. Min Young shows him crime scene photos while Ki Hyung asks a few questions. He noticed how easily the reporter made the killer into a hero by calling him a vigilante for justice. He also believes that the reporter wouldn’t mind if the killer wasn’t caught for a while. It would give him something to write about. Slowly but surely the reporter figures out what Ki Hyung is doing and starts to be insulted by it. Ki Hyung takes a step back and asks for the reporters help if what he is saying about him isn’t true.
At the court records building, Hyun Joon and Sun Woo search the court documents for clues and find that there is a backlog for the cases. Meanwhile. Ki Hyung looks at a file with the personal information of each murder victim. Ki Hyung remembers what the woman at the church said about the man’s fingers. They were moving like he was playing the piano. Ki Hyung gets up from his desk and calls Na Hwang. He asks her to look into the court stenographer for each one of the murder victims court cases. At about the same time, Hyun Joon and Sun Woo are figuring out the same thing. They ask where the stenographer is now and it is then that they remember the unassuming clerk sitting below the judge’s bench. They realize that he would have heard all of their questions.
Na Hwang quickly finds information on the court stenographer. His name is Jung Do Il and he was the victim of a violent crime when he was fifteen. His family was murdered and he was the only survivor. Hyun Joon and Sun Woo go to the court room but find that Do Il has taken the rest of the day off, claiming to be sick. At home, Do Il stabs another photograph onto the pile and leaves his apartment wearing his black hoodie.
The NCI team and local police descend on Do Il’s apartment. They find the windows covered in foil and the rooms lined with boxes filled with file folders. Sun Woo finds a single framed photo in the apartment. It is Do Il and his family. Na Hwang calls with information about Do Il’s family. His father, Jung Hyung Soo, was a teacher of folklore and the family was murdered by one of his students, Oh Kyeung Sub. At the time of the murders, Oh Kyeung Sub’s blood alcohol level was 0.25% and he claimed that Do Il’s father had abused him for years, resulting in psychological damage. He was sentenced to only ten years in prison and then subsequently had the sentence reduced to seven years. Oh Kyeung Sub found religion after being released from jail and became a missionary. Ki Hyung finds a broken cross on the bookshelf and realizes that not only is Do Il angry with the justice system but he is also angry with God. Hyun Joon calls Ki Hyung into the next room. He has found a box full of home made knives and case files. It appears that Do Il had no plans to stop the killing. Han Lee finds a stenographers keyboard and notices that it is so well worn that the letters are missing from the keys.
Sun Woo finds folder after folder of case files but none of them are written in a language she can understand. Lee Han explains that court stenographers often have their own secret codes for recording information. The team begins to dig into box after box filled with folders. The team wonders if they will be able to make sense of anything they find until Lee Han realizes that Do Il marked the cases with post-it notes that have since been removed. The post-it note may be gone, but the mark on the paper where it used to be, remains. Hyun Joon calls Na Hwang and gives her the date information he finds for the pages with the post-it residue. The dates coincide with the ruling dates for the murder victims. Na Hwang also finds a case that is similar to Do Il’s family story. Hwang In Chul murdered his own parents claiming that he suffered abuse at their hands. He was found not guilty and released. A detective enters the room and hands Ki Hyung a stack of pictures on an office spindle. The top photo is Hwang In Chul.
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As the team races to Hwang In Chul’s home, Min Young tries desperately to reach him by phone. Even his wife is unavailable. Meanwhile, Do Il is tracking Hwang In Chul. He sees his target and exits his vehicle to follow him on foot. Ki Hyung finally contacts In Chul’s wife and explains to her what is happening. She immediately calls him to warn him but she is too late. Do Il has already cut In Chul and has dragged him to a nearby playground to publically execute him. Before he kills him, Do Il tries to get In Chul to confess that he lied in court. The NCI team arrives and tries to talk Do Il out of committing his awful crime. A crowd gathers as Ki Hyung promises Do Il that they will reinvestigate his parent’s murder case.
Another unassuming young man has gathered with the onlookers. He blends in with the crowd and for a moment we completely forget that he is there. Hyun Joon also tries to talk Do Il away from In Chul, reminding him that if he kills In Chul he will never know the full reason why Kyung Sub murdered his family. In Chul begs for forgiveness which only causes Do Il’s rage to increase. Do Il remembers visiting Kyung Sub in jail and hearing him say that “the Lord” forgave him had sent Do Il over the edge. Sitting in court every day and watching those that he knew were guilty walk free only served to add fuel to the fire in his mind. He had planned to kill Kyung Sub the day he walked out of prison but instead he watched as Kyung Sub walked into the waiting arms of his living breathing parents.
Do Il raises his knife to strike and a local police officer shoots him. In Chul is pulled away from Do Il and Hyun Joon and Ki Hyung rush to Do Il’s side. Before he dies he says that he couldn’t believe that “he” was living his life after doing something so horrible. In Chul stands up and begins to walk away from the scene with a strange smile on his face and it makes us wonder if Do Il was right. He doesn’t get very far when the unassuming young man that we forgot about comes up to him and says “This is judgment by justice” before stabbing him repeatedly. In Chul falls to the ground as his attacker is dragged away.
“I am against violence because even if it seems to serve a greater good, it in itself is only temporary. As long as violence exists, evil will persist forever.” -Gandhi
Ki Hyung sits at his desk and watches several man-on-the-street interviews about the court killer. Some of those interviewed think that he was delivering justice while others see that what he did was not right. Hyun Joon comes to his office to report on the unassuming man that killed In Chul. He was only a copycat killer and had no ties to In Chul at all. Ki Hyung admits to being unsettled while watching the street interviews and hearing the widely diverse opinions of the average citizen. “If the law can’t do its job, the world will go insane.” Hyun Joon admits that there are times when he would like to use his fists instead of waiting for the law and he acknowledges that the general public must feel that to an even greater degree. Out of nowhere, Ki Hyung asks Hyun Joon out for a drink. Hyun Joon quickly agrees and the men exit the office and leave the most recent case behind.
Na Hwang, Han Byul, Min Young, and her niece are returning from a weekend trip. The head towards the subway and encounter a long tunnel littered with homeless people. The children ask questions that children do about being homeless and the women have a difficult time giving the children solid answers on the topic. Later the group sits down for a quick bite. Min Young spends most of her time on the internet and when Na Hwang complains about it she explains that she is talking to her landlord about her rent. Na Hwang says that she needs to get her own house but Min Young says she’s not sure if she could afford it.
In the same subway hall, a well-dressed man walks past the homeless people sleeping on their cardboard boxes. One of the homeless men sits up and acts as if he recognizes the well-dressed man but a stern look from the suit wearing stranger and the homeless man immediately apologizes and reassures the man that he has mistaken him for someone else. Later, we see the same man in a luxury apartment. He is wearing a bathrobe and watching television as a pretty young girl wanders the apartment and comments on how much it must cost him to live there. She appears to be a call girl and not someone who is familiar with the man or his lifestyle. He invites her to have dinner with him and they adjourn to the kitchen for some food and wine. Soon her head is hurting and she is asking him playfully if he drugged her drink. She tries to make her way to the couch to collect her purse and leave but he comes up behind her with a golf club and bashes her head in.
The next day, the luxury high-rise holds an open house in their model apartment. Interested buyers walk through the apartment inspecting its many amenities. One woman goes to the kitchen and begins pulling drawers and cabinets open. She reaches for a cabinet door and when she opens it she finds the bloodied body of the call girl stuffed inside. At NCI headquarters, Min Young briefs the team on the murder and we learn that it isn’t the first such murder. Another woman was murdered in a model apartment and it appeared that the killer even took a bath and ate dinner before leaving the scene of the crime. There is also no evidence of sexual assault on either body.
Ki Hyung sends Hyun Joon and Sun Woo to investigate the most recent model home murder. Undigested food in the victim’s stomach indicates that she ate her last meal at the apartment. Hyun Joon goes to the cabinet where the woman was found. Her blood still stains the pristine white cabinet.