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I love the ocean. You know why? The ocean doesn't give a crap about you or about anybody. It does whatever it wants and you just have to go along with it.
~ Henry Mesner revealing the depth of his psychopathy

Henry Mesner is the main antagonist of the Law & Order: SVU episodes "Born Psychopath" and "Post Graduate Psychopath". He is a boy with antisocial personality disorder who abuses, and eventually tries to kill, his own sister. In 2021, he is released from a juvenile facility and goes on a rape and murder spree.

He was portrayed by Ethan Cutkosky.

Biography

The Manhattan Special Victims Unit gets involved with the Mesner family after their five-year-old daughter Ruby ends up in the emergency room after her school nurse reported bruises on her stomach and a bump on her head. When Ruby is asked who hurt her, she said that "a monster" did it.

When Henry is questioned by the detectives about what happened to Ruby, he says that he saw the family nanny, Irina, push Ruby down the stairs. When Irina is interrogated, she tells the detectives that it was Henry who pushed Ruby, and that he is "the monster".

When Henry is questioned again, he says that he pushed Ruby down the stairs as an "experiment" and thinks that Ruby wasn't hurt that badly because she didn't cry as much. Henry's mother, Viola, admits that Henry has some resentment towards Ruby, while his father, Tom, thinks that his behavior is normal and he will outgrow it.

Assistant District Attorney Pippa Cox tells the SVU detectives that Henry won't be charged with hurting Ruby if the Mesners agree to get him psychiatric help, but they refuse because they are afraid of their son being labeled. When Viola tries to get Henry to go to bed, Henry slashes her hand with a knife.

When psychiatrist Dr. George Huang evaluates Henry, he diagnoses him as a psychopath because he has no emotions and lacks sympathy and empathy for others. He recommends that Henry should be sent to a facility in Vermont for treatment. At first, Viola and Tom refuse to institutionalize their son, but eventually agree to do so as Henry grows more violent and aggressive toward Ruby.

When Viola tells Henry about the facility, he throws a violent tantrum. After Tom leaves for work, Henry traps Viola in the laundry room, ties Ruby to her bed, and sets their apartment on fire. After that, he goes over to his friend Toby's apartment where he steals a gun owned by Toby's father, locks Toby in a closet and drowns his family's dog in a bathtub.

When Detective Nick Amaro finds Henry in the play area of the apartment building, Henry is shown holding a five-year-old boy named Sam hostage at gunpoint. Amaro is able to convince Henry to let the boy go, but Henry points the gun at Amaro. He ends up shooting Amaro in the stomach, but because Amaro was wearing a protective vest, he sustains only minor injuries.

In the end, Cox tells the Mesners that Henry will be charged with juvenile delinquency and incarcerated until the age of 18. When his parents tell Henry the news, he cries and hugs his father, hiding the cold, predatory look on his face.

Return

In 2021, Henry is released from the juvenile facility after his eighteenth birthday, convincing the court that he has changed. After he is released, however, he rapes and tortures Libby Blandon, whom he also attempts to strangle. She survives, however.

From there, he goes on a killing spree. After killing his father Tom, stepmother Holly and half-brother Arlo, Henry held Ruby, now 13, hostage at an amusement park. SVU detective Amanda Rollins tries to talk Henry down, but he instead blames her for Viola's death during his incarceration, even though she had died of cancer. He sets Ruby free, but takes Rollins hostage.. Rollins tells Henry that she had worried about him when he was 10 years old, and that she did not want him to die. She keeps him distracted long enough for her fellow detectives to take him into custody.

Rollins soon realizes that Henry has been stalking her family, particularly her daughter Jesse, as he has several images of her on his phone. Rollins, Dr. Peter Lindstrom, A.D.A. Dominick Carisi and several others recommend that Henry be institutionalized for the rest of his life, stating that he would continue to kill, stalk and rape people as long as he was free.

At Henry's trial, Judge Anita Wright sentences Henry to a psychiatric hospital indefinitely. Henry flies into a rage and stabs Carisi in his ear with a pencil before being dragged away by the court officers, shouting he wants his "daddy". It is later revealed that his outburst was a calculated attempt to appear insane.

Rollins visits a heavily sedated Henry in the institution, and angrily tells him that she lied about not wanting him to die. She then says that if he goes near her, her children, or Carisi ever again, she would kill him herself. After she leaves, Henry smiles maliciously to himself.

Victims

Unknown dates:

  • Several unnamed classmates (all assaulted)

2012-March of 2013

  • Ruby Mesner (his sister; abused repeatedly; later attempted to suffocate)

March 15–16, 2013

  • Viola Mesner (his mother; cut her hand with a knife)

March 16, 2013

  • Toby Burke (threatened to shoot him & then tied up and left alive in a closet)
  • Snowball (drowned her in a tub)
  • Sam (held at gunpoint)
  • Detective Olivia Benson (held at gunpoint)
  • Detective Nick Amaro (shot in the abdomen with Adam Burke's antique handgun, but was protected by a bulletproof vest and survived)

April 2, 2021

  • Tom Mesner (his father; stabbed repeatedly; murdered)
  • Holly Mesner (his stepmother; stabbed repeatedly; murdered)
  • Arlo Mesner (his half-brother; stabbed repeatedly; murdered)
  • Libby Blandon (raped, tortured and attempted to murder)

April 4, 2021

  • Unnamed police officer (assaulted; tied up and left in the trunk of a car)
  • Megan Davis (assaulted)
  • Charlotte Davis (assaulted)
  • Ruby Mesner (abducted; threatened to kill; survived)
  • Detective Amanda Rollins (held hostage)

April 6, 2021

  • A.D.A. Dominick Carisi, Jr. (assaulted; stabbed in the ear with a pencil)

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