'Grey's Anatomy': Richard's Downward Spiral Lands Him in Jail

One of Grey's Anatomy's original characters has been going through a hard time, reaching a breaking point during Thursday's all new episode.

Since Richard (James Pickens Jr.) faced the death of his Alcoholics Anonymous sponsor Olive Warner (Mary Kay Place), the former chief of surgery has been acting strange, with many fearing that the passing of such an important person in his life might lead to another relapse.

During Thursday's episode, titled "Anybody Have A Map?," the long-running ABC medical drama shone a spotlight on Richard as he worked to save a pregnant nurse who collapses while they are talking.

A popular nurse at Grey Sloan at the hospital, Richard finds out that she has a wandering spleen and they disagree on her having surgery. She tells him that she will not risk her unborn child's life.

Later, Richard and the nurse are happy to see that her condition is fixing on its own. The nurse asks Richard how he's doing, but he avoids the questions.

Richard is then shocked when Frankie's condition deteriorates and he is forced to perform emergency surgery to remove her spleen. During the procedure, the nurse crashes and Richard and Alex (Justin Chambers) are forced to deliver the baby.

Alex successfully delivers the baby, but Frankie starts to crash, and despite their best efforts she passes away. In the difficult moment, Richard struggles to call time of death, and he walks away heartbroken.

He heads outside the O.R. to tell all the nurses about Frankie's death, before he heads to an AA meeting. He's distracted during it, however, and he walks out before it is done.

Richard later arrives at a bar — where AA chips get you free shots — intending to break his sobriety. The bartender pours him the shots and leaves him, but he takes his chip back and steps in the back and uses the bar's baseball bat to smash all the bottles at the place.

At the end of the episode Meredith gets a call from Richard telling her he was arrested after the incident and needs her help.


Things will not be getting better for Richard any time soon, as Meredith and Koracik traveled to Los Angeles during the episode to work on a special patient, who turned out to be Richard's Catherine Avery. After taking a biopsy on a spinal tumor, the doctors find out that Catherine has a serious cancer diagnosis they will have to figure out how to treat for the remainder of the season.

How will Richard take the heartbreaking news? Grey's Anatomy will air its fall finale Thursday, Nov. 15 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.