NCIS: New Orleans started with a bang: many, many bangs in fact, as action got underway with masked bandits in a van firing off an ungodly amount of rounds at cops before speeding off. It's not until the van is well on its way -- accidentally letting a trunk fall out of it in the process -- that officers get up and realize they haven't been hit. Although the bandits were armed with powerful AR-15s, grenades and made off with high-powered MP5 weapons, they were shooting with rubber bullets.
Meanwhile, at shady Mayor Hamilton's (Steven Weber) office, he's paranoid he's being surveilled, and having his office swept for bugs. And since he pays in cash -- no paper trails, thank you -- we know it's not by someone on the official payroll. He had a right to be worried though; back at NCIS: NOLA HQ, Patton (Daryl "Chill" Mitchell) is in fact gathering all the intel that's able to be gathered within the strict parameters of the law.
When Gregorio (Vanessa Ferlito), LaSalle (Lucas Black) and Percy (Shalita Grant) do interviews at the crime scene, they chat up maker of traditional and rubber-bullet guns Justice Bancroft (J. Downing), whose goods got stolen in the heist. This is the third time too! Though he seems fairly cool, it's his daughter Nadine Bancroft (Sara Lindsey) who's acting cagey -- letting them know they don't have time for this silly little investigation since they have to host a charity event tomorrow. (Don't TV rich people aways have some charity event that doesn't leave them time for meddlesome authorities? What a life!)
After Sebastian (Rob Kerkovich) does some digging, he realizes he couldn't find the suspects because he'd been looking for men. Way to check your male privilege, Sebastian! They realize one of the gangstresses affiliated with this mess is a woman named Bellacroix, who in short order ends up dead. The curious thing about her body though? Wade (CCH Pounder) makes it clear that she'd been shot and stitched up before -- a clue that links them to an associate, Dr. Emma Miller. She'll be at the Bancroft's fancy gathering, the squad figures, and they head off to talk with her.
She was there alright, but not really able to enjoy the wine and the Sheryl Crow concert since she was dead. That makes two women associated with this family snuffed out. What's going on?
It's still fuzzy, but we do know that Bancroft is soon in Mayor Hamilton's office, asking to get NCIS off his back as he tries to get his missing guns. Having heard enough, Pride (Scott Bakula) breaches protocol -- totally ignoring the fact that this audio isn't legal -- to detain Bancroft and risk all his effort to nab Hamilton by admitting NCIS: NOLA had been listening to Hamilton. It's clear now that Bancroft was trying to steal his guns back -- except he was covering up for Nadine, who was part of the heist crew. But it's not long before they find her in the company of masked gunmen who've tied her up. Another shootout ensues as NCIS: NOLA's heroes save her, popping bad guys in the process.
Examining one of the bodies that fell in that shootout, Wade (CCH Pounder) has a big surprise for Pride: the men who captured Nadine are Boko Haram, which she could tell by the markings on their faces and legs. What are they doing in New Orleans, and why are they killing the heist crew? Under interrogation, Nadine admits that, while on a humanitarian attack trip to Africa, she witnessed Boko Haram torturing, raping and killing innocent people; she was trying to get those guns to help the villagers trapped there. Well how about that?! Sure, what she was doing made her eligible for more than a dozen felonies but, if they don't let her go, she says, the terrorists will keep attacking the people there. Could they live with that?
Pride makes the call that they'll follow Nadine as she tries to do a gun drop at a hangar, get the guns and detain her. When they do though, they arrive to find her within an inch of her life and the terrorists about to blow her head off. As they shield her from a shower of bullets, she slips out of the structure and begs Percy to let her run. If free, she can warn villagers about the impending retaliation for this mess and lead them into safety. (She's like that girl that goes on a trip to Africa and takes it to a whole 'nother level, right?) Against her better judgement, Percy lets her go. And that turns out to to be a terrible mistake -- she's hauled into a judge's office, where a tape is played showing her letting Nadine run. Despite Pride's best pleas, she's now in serious trouble. How much trouble? Pride has to be the one to break the bad news to her crush LaSalle: they're taking Percy to jail.
NCIS: New Orleans airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on CBS.
(Full disclosure: TVGuide.com is owned by CBS.)