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Hey, do you think you'll ever catch Joe's partner?
Samsen

Daria Samsen is the first victim (and eventual accomplice) of Joe Bachner, who appeared in the Season Nine episode of Criminal Minds, "The Edge of Winter".

Background

"I loved him. That's why I did those things. After a while, he didn't even have to ask me to do it. I just did."

Samsen was originally a medical student at Cornell University who enjoyed a close relationship with her sister Ellen. She also worked part-time as a diner waitress. While walking to the diner with Ellen in March 2012, she encountered Joe Bachner, who flirted with her. Later that day, he managed to get her into his car. When Samsen woke up after being suddenly rendered unconscious, she found herself tied up in Bachner's house; he then held her captive, repeatedly raping and torturing her. Eventually, Samsen submitted to the torture, developing Stockholm syndrome and gradually falling in love with Bachner. Once she was completely submissive towards him, she acted as a partner for his crimes, cleaning up his tool-shed and helping him dispose the bodies of other victims. At some point in 2013, a woman named Carrie, Bachner's latest captive, managed to smuggle the key to the shed one night and convinced Samsen to help her escape. They broke out, but when an awakened Bachner fired several shots from a rifle, wounding Carrie, Samsen panicked and left her behind, running through the forest and out into the road, where she was hit by a passing truck.

Rescued (likely by the truck driver), Samsen later woke up in the hospital, having been rendered in a dissociative state due to the trauma and the accident. She alternated between hysterically begging for Carrie's forgiveness and screaming about "them", but nonetheless gave the BAU (who had been called in after three of Bachner's victims were found) key clues about the unsub. Her mind having been broken, she convinced herself that Bachner's partner was one of his poker buddies, a man named Coby Peters, who coincidentally had medical training; this caused the BAU to briefly suspect him of being the actual accomplice to the murders. However, when they quickly realized he wasn't the partner, he provided them with Bachner's location, which enabled them to arrest him and rescue Carrie, as well as a man he abducted after Samsen escaped. During another interview, Morgan noticed that Samsen was constantly making things around her neat, a sign of the OCD they had profiled the submissive partner as having. He made her divulge the location of an icepick, and then confronted her with the truth: she was the other partner. Unable to accept this, Samsen started screaming and apparently descended further into a dissociative state, ending up in the Maynard Grove Mental Institution for a year.

The Edge of Winter

In the episode, Morgan visits her again to prepare her for Samsen's trial as a sympathetic witness. After going over the events of last year, he makes her face her role as Bachner's accomplice. He assumes that he had coerced her, but she calmly reveals that she did her part willingly, having fallen in love with him. Disappointed, Morgan sadly tells Ellen that Samsen will be staying in the hospital for the rest of her life lest she faces jail time. After taking her medication, she slips back into her delusional state and innocently asks if Morgan will ever find Bachner's partner. He replies with "I'm not sure, but we're still looking". She wishes him good luck and he says goodbye.

Modus Operandi

Under Bachner's influence, Samsen would inflict at least some of the torture on his victims for him. She would do so by stabbing them 28 times with an icepick under his orders. The wounds were always positioned in seven groups of four each due to her OCD. Samsen would then help him dispose of the bodies afterwards.

Known Victims

  • Note: The following were abducted and killed by Bachner, while Samsen would torture them.
  • 2012:
    • December 6: Marlene Godfrey (killed on December 29)
    • December 15: Chloe Reynolds (killed on January 5, 2013)
    • December 21: Ben Wilson (killed on January 8, 2013)
  • January 1, 2013: Carrie (abducted, raped, tortured, non-fatally shot with a rifle, and stabbed in the stomach with an icepick; was rescued on January 10, but possibly died from her injuries afterwards)

Appearances

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