This Is How a Heart Breaks is the third episode of the third season, and the 28th episode overall, of the show, Rizzoli & Isles.


When Maura meets a new guy named Dennis in a very unusual way, he opens up a different side of her. And Jane is filled with mixed emotions after someone from her past returns.


The episode begins with a man running into an alley; he is scared. We also hear shots behind fired in the background. The man hides behind a bin and calls out “Stop”. The firing stops. It turns out it is just a hallucination and he's imagining the sounds of war. He comes out of his hiding but moments later, a man whose face isn’t seen, appears from behind and kills this man with an axe. Next, Jane and Maura arrive at the crime scene. Maura appreciates the graffiti on the walls but Jane calls that vandalism. She asks Frankie to click pictures. Jane then talks to a witness. He is the artist of the paintings on the street walls. But he is not the one who put it on the walls. They then see the victim’s dead body. His name is Bernard Avery. Maura examines the body. 

Jane notices one set of bloody footprints but they assume that there might have been two weapons involved. Just then a man arrives telling the team that he has a tip on the murder. The man calls himself General Raymond and he introduces Jane to Agent Brown. Brown can identify the killer. Jane finds all this funny as the old man was acting like someone from the army and so was Brown. The general tells her that Avery was a Marine Special Cop and the street guy look was only a cover. Jane doesn’t get any useful information and so she tips the general and leaves. The general gives it to Brown. In the lab, Maura and Jane figure out that the murder weapon is a Tomahawk, a type of axe given to the Marines. Just then another dead body is brought in; Dennis Rockmond. As Maura examines the body, Jane notices the sheet on Dennis’ body rising. Maura check under the sheets and declares that Dennis’ penis has a pulse.

She is shocked. She infers it could be some sort of bronchial spasm and she calls for EMT. Maura performs a small incision in his throat and blows air in to it with a pen. He opens his eyes. The EMT arrives and takes Dennis. Frost, Vince and Jane go through Bernard’s military records. There is no conviction. They then check his Marine squad team. Jane notices Brown in the picture and finds that his Tomahawk is still strapped on to him. He is their first suspect. Bernard’s wife arrives to meet Jane and so Frost and Frankie go to pick up their first suspect. Bernard’s wife recognizes Justin Brown’s photo as he was Bernard’s best friend. She tells Jane and Vince that after a particular incident, Bernard suffered from PTSD and was treated for it. But he was kicked out from his service. He carried his tomahawk with him and said that he never felt safe without it.

She then tells them that he had a nightmare after which he started thinking that their son was a suicide bomber. Next, Jane and Vince go to meet the psychologist who was supposed to treat Bernard. But he leads them to Colonel Casey Jones who Bernard was assigned to. Vince and Jane are surprised to see Jones. Jones tells them that Bernard got into a physical fight with another guy and so both of them were kicked out of the program. Jane wants to know why didn’t Jones tells her that he is back from his covert operation. But Jones tells her that things have changed and asks her to leave. Jane tells Maura that Jones is back and she is heartbroken that “things had changed”. Maura feels bad for her friend. She then interrogates Tyler, the guy who was kicked out by Jones for getting into a fight with Bernard. Tyler tells them that he did not kill Bernard. He tells them that the reason for the fight was that, during a mission, Bernard did not take his shot at a suicide bomber and as a result 6 of them were killed and Tyler ended up in a wheelchair. Just then Frost calls Jane informing her that Justin Brown has been murdered. 

Brown’s wounds are similar to those of Bernard’s. Next, Dennis arrives to thank Maura for saving his life. Raymond walks in with another informant who tells her that the murdered is the Pope who took on homeless people. Raymond then hands over Brown’s intel to Jane. She promises that she will check it out. Jane asks Frost to check if any neighborhoods watch volunteers who looked like the Pope and also drove a Pope vehicle. They find one match; Jeff Miller. Meanwhile, Maura is out for dinner with Dennis. They then decide to do something wild and begin spray painting on the walls of a terrace. The cops arrive and arrest them for vandalism. Meanwhile, Frost and Vince arrest Jeff Miller. Next, Maura examines the reports of Bernard’s lungs; but it appears that he did not have war-lung. They find out that the condition of his lungs was due to the overexposure to spray paint. They infer that Bernard was tagging over someone else’s painting and that painter carried a tomahawk. Jane, Vince and Frost check for taggers in the graffiti task force database. 

There is a graffiti that isn’t on the database and the tagger was Steve Bogart, who later became a film producer. It appears that Bogart was assaulted by Bernard. But Bernard wasn’t charged for assault. Possibly Bogart wanted to deal with Bernard personally. Frankie and Frost go to Bogart’s apartment. It appears that the apartment was rummaged. They hear some noise. Frankie opens the lid of a tub-like thing. They find a dead body inside; drowned in some sort of acid. In the lab, Maura figures out that Bogart was killed three days ago; as the acid he was drowned in is acetic acid. So he was killed before Bernard and Brown. Jane then goes through the small keyboard that Raymond gave her; Brown’s intel. They find a video card in it. They then go to an art exhibition of street painting. It is the same painter we saw in the beginning who said that he is the artist of all the graffiti on the walls. They play the video card in the exhibition. The film shows that Bogart was shooting Bernard making those paintings on that wall. It was the painting of a boy with blood around him. Bogart wants to know why Bernard keeps painting that boy. 

Bernard tells the camera that it was an eight-year-old boy and he was a suicide bomber. The little boy was told that the infidels would die but he won’t. Bernard recollects the boy’s face that was staring at him, when it blew apart. That is why Bernard was haunted as he could not kill that little boy. Bernard states that this is not art and the self-proclaimed artist can’t have it and it is not for sale. They arrest the artist for triple homicide and Vince also finds the tomahawk from his studio. Next, Jane goes to meet Casey Jones. She tells him that she knows he loved her and so did she. She also knows that when he was sent to the war torn desert, he called her just to hear her voice.

But Jones doesn’t want to have this conversation. He tells her that he has nothing to offer her and asks her to leave. He tells her that he is sorry. Jane leaves. Jones stares at his laptop with Jane’s picture on it. He then gets up to leave. But he finds it a little difficult to get up; he has a spinal injury and is on crutches. Jane is upset and tells Maura about what happened. She tells Maura that she wants to do something crazy.


Main Cast

Guest Cast



Dennis Rockmond will later appear in third season tenth episode Melt My Heart To Stone.


Rizzoli & Isles 3x03 Promo "This Is How a Heart Breaks" (HD)00:17

Rizzoli & Isles 3x03 Promo "This Is How a Heart Breaks" (HD)


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