Criminal Minds (2005– )
1 user 1 critic

Catching Out 

A man is jumping trains along Highway 99, brutally killing couples in their homes whenever he stops.


Charles Haid


Jeff Davis (created by), Oanh Ly | 1 more credit »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Mantegna ... David Rossi
Paget Brewster ... Emily Prentiss
Shemar Moore ... Derek Morgan
Matthew Gray Gubler ... Dr. Spencer Reid
A.J. Cook ... Jennifer Jareau
Kirsten Vangsness ... Penelope Garcia
Thomas Gibson ... Aaron Hotchner
Meta Golding ... Jordan Todd
Pepe Serna ... Ruben Garcia
Andre Royo ... Armando Salinas
Jim Cody Williams ... Modesto Bull
Adrian LaTourelle ... Detective Stark
Victor Warren ... Detective Daniels
Mitch Carter ... Lockeford Bull
Michael Earl Reid ... Older Hobo


A serial killer is jumping trains on Highway 99. Whenever he stops, he breaks into houses, brutally kills its residents and then spends the night there, pretending it's his own. Meanwhile, Morgan bumps into a woman who seems to know who he is at a coffee shop and feels like he's seen her face before. Written by J. Rieper

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »





English | Spanish

Release Date:

29 October 2008 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


This episode was inspired by the case of Angel Maturino Resendis. A Mexican-American serial killer who committed multiple murders across the southwestern United States in the 1990's. He was known as The Railroad Killer/Railway Killer/Railbox Killer. He was eventually caught and killed by law enforcement in 2006. See more »


Like a lot of "Criminal Minds" locations, the outside shots are definitely not done in the Calif Central Valley between Sacto and Modesto along Highway 99. There are no close foothills near 99 or the railroad in that area, despite what was depicted in one farm scene. See more »


Emily Prentiss: If you get close to him, you won't miss him. He will smell like a combination of human filth and paint thinner.
See more »


Written by Arden of Eden
Performed by Arden of Eden
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User Reviews

The case of the Highway 99 killer
20 November 2016 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Season 4 for me is one of 'Criminal Minds' strongest seasons, one with so many very good to outstanding episodes, that stick in the mind much more than the lesser episodes (which is not the case for some seasons) and even the weakest ones of the season are still better than the worst episodes of Seasons 6-11.

Although being so blown away by the likes of "The Big Wheel", "Conflicted", "Zoe's Reprise", "The Instincts", "Memoriam" and "Omnivore", Season 4 is still not devoid of episodes that underwhelmed. That was the impression gotten from "Demonology" (despite the brilliant performance of Paget Brewster, it was a case of doing something different and executing it in a rather strange way) and this episode "Catching Out", "Normal" needs a re-watch, remembering that not doing much for me but it's been a while.

"Catching Out" is an episode that has been seen three times by me (mostly because of loving the team interaction and character moments and wanting to like it much more than turned out), and it still leaves me reasonably indifferent. By all means better than my first two watches, but with so many classic episodes and the season generally being one of the show's strongest the difference in overall execution is vast.

It is saved by the character moments and the team interaction. The BAU are well-used and work well with nobody out of character or useless, their scenes are actually both much more memorable and much better executed than the case itself. Reid touching JJ's stomach to feel the baby kick was a really sweet and heart-warming moment, while the end chase was exciting and Morgan being profiled at the beginning simply priceless. Morgan and Rossi deciphering the codes used to jump railroad cars was very cool, and also love how Hotch leads the team in a no-nonsense but never degrading way.

Visually, "Catching Out" as always with 'Criminal Minds' is very well made, with the dark visual style adding a lot to the atmosphere. The scenery and the railroad location gave a little creepiness. The music is appropriately moody and haunting, not always enhancing but never distracting. The acting from all the leads is very good, there is some thought-provoking writing and again the chemistry and scenes with the leads are magic.

What a shame that the actual case brings the episode down in such a big way. Very little creative was done with it, instead it lacked tension, suspense or any real surprises. A good deal of it was a slog pacing-wise, and not helped by a sketchily developed and blandly played unsub, a rather strange and extreme motivation and things that should have been explained better but were either part-explained or neglected, so sense is also lacking at times here.

All in all, a rare disappointing, though a long way from bad, episode in a strong season. 6/10 Bethany Cox

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