|“||The men I hunt down are cowards. For the most part, they target the weakest members of society, women, and children. There's nothing I'd rather do more than put the bastards away.||”|
— Elle in "Broken Mirror"
Elle Greenaway is a former Supervisory Special Agent with the BAU. Her specialty was sexual offense crimes. She officially resigned from her position in Season Two due to PTSD from being shot by an unsub stalking the team, and due to murdering another unsub, making her a one-time vigilante killer. She was replaced by Emily Prentiss, who held the position until Season Seven.
Elle Greenaway was born on June 24, 1977 to a police officer named Robert Greenaway, and an unnamed woman. Robert nicknamed Elle, "Peanut". Sometime later, Robert was shot and killed.
On Criminal Minds
Elle was introduced to the show in the pilot episode, "Extreme Aggressor", where she helped the BAU capture a possible suspect. She also shot the unsub in that same episode when he tried to kill Gideon who had taunted him. Following on from that, Elle joined the BAU, filling the vacant spot she had been hoping to get, although Gideon told her that she was very impatient and ordered her to correct it. Her father Robert was a police officer who was killed in the line of duty when she was a child. She is half-Cuban from her mother and as seen in the episode, "Machismo", she is also fluent in Spanish.
Her time at the BAU, which lasted for a year-and-a-half, was successful until an unsub shot her in "The Fisher King, Part 1"; the unsub broke into her home and awaited her arrival home from the BAU. He also stuck his fingers into her wound and wrote the word "RULES" on the wall using her blood. Paramedics found her a while or so later and eventually managed to get her heart beating again, and as later revealed by Agent Grant Anderson in a talk with Hotch and Gideon, they were unaware that Elle was an FBI agent until Anderson himself arrived at the house. While having surgery performed on her, Elle's spirit, which hovered between life and death, had a heart-to-heart talk with Robert, which helped her resolve some issues and also inspired her to return to the real world.
Though she physically recovered by the end of "The Fisher King, Part 2", the event still left her with psychological scars as she felt no longer safe in her home after her attack. She returned to the team in "P911", where she and the rest of the team cooperated with the FBI's Innocent Images Unit to track down the whereabouts of a missing boy captured by a pedophile, despite Hotch and Reid expressing their concerns that she had come back far too early.
Everything seemed to be going well for her up until the episode "Aftermath", where the team was asked to help arrest a serial rapist. This triggered Elle's downward spiral and she began acting more harshly, even laying into the local police department after they had failed to notice that a woman was being raped in her own home. In an effort to capture him, Elle went undercover, but her emotional attachment to the case blew the operation and she confronted the suspect, William Lee before he gave the BAU probable cause to arrest him. The team brought Lee back to the station, hoping that he will confess since they don't have a legal reason to arrest him. Before he is able to confess, his lawyer tells him to stop talking. Elle watched furiously as Lee is released from custody. Enraged, she began targeting her own team members with criticism, even blaming Hotch for sending her home which had led to her getting shot. She then followed Lee to his apartment and confronted him, and he thanks her for letting him walk. As a result, she kills him in cold blood and later cites self-defense for her actions.
In "The Boogeyman", Elle missed a psychological evaluation, forcing Hotch to stay behind to find her while Gideon and the rest of the team headed to Texas to work on a case. She eventually returned to the BAU but handed in her badge and gun to Hotch, saying that it was not an admission of guilt. With that, Elle officially resigned from the FBI for good and was eventually replaced by Emily Prentiss until her departure at the end of Season Seven. Her job is then taken over by Alex Blake until her own departure at the end of Season Nine. The position was then taken over by Kate Callahan in Season Ten, who then left the show at the end of the season due to her pregnancy, after which she was replaced by Dr. Tara Lewis in Season Eleven.
Even after her departure, Elle was still mentioned. In "In Name and Blood", Hotch mentions to Prentiss about the time Elle shot William Lee in cold blood. Elle is mentioned again by Garcia in "Penelope" after Garcia survives being shot by Jason Clark Battle. In "The Storm", after Hotch is arrested for conspiracy, Elle is again mentioned by Timothy Ritchie, who brought up the time Hotch previously terminated Elle from service after she killed William Lee. Elle reappeared in "And in the End..." in Reid's dream after falling unconscious in his apartment due to being injured in an explosion caused by Everett Lynch.
- October 19, 2006: William Lee (shot; falsely claimed self-defense)
Behind the Scenes
Elle was portrayed by Lola Glaudini, whose reasons for leaving the show were that she had become unhappy with being in Los Angeles and wanted to go back to the East Coast.
- Her sidearm was a Glock 19.
- Her mother is Cuban and she can speak Spanish ("Machismo").
- She shares a trait with Derek Morgan in that both their fathers were police officers who died in the line of duty.
- She hates telephones ("Charm and Harm").
- Her father nicknamed her "Peanut" as a child ("The Fisher King, Part 2").
- She has a scar on her chest as a result of the gunshot wound that she received in "The Fisher King, Part 1" ("Aftermath").
- She has appeared in the show's first 28 episodes, "The Boogeyman" being her last.
- She was born and raised in New York, much like Lola Glaudini, the actress that portrays her.