Pope becomes interim chief after Delk's death, but he doesn't cancel Raydor's investigation into Brenda. Meanwhile, Major Crimes tackles a case involving a house sitter who was killed while the family who hired her was on vacation.
An escort appears to have died from an overdose, but her mother, a Phoenix police officer, insists it's not true. Meanwhile, Raydor's continuing investigation makes Brenda comes to terms with a shocking reality.
As Brenda suspects a good Samaritan high school coach of murdering his new principal to cover instances of pedophilia, Captain Raydor catches Pope off guard with the surprise announcement of her retirement.
A Christmas village Santa is killed in a zip-line accident, and the village's other Santa comes under suspicion. Meanwhile, Brenda's lawyer informs her that his retainer has run out and she needs to pay him $25,000.
Brenda and Fritz butt heads when the FBI appears to sabotage her murder investigation because her main suspect is under their surveillance, and Brenda's parents come to town for the holidays with some bad news.
When Major Crimes finds Peter Goldman's card on a murdered witness to Turell Baylor's death, new questions and suspects emerge in the Baylor case that could ultimately prove Brenda's innocence in the federal suit against her.