NCIS Database

Safe Harbor is the fifth episode in NCIS Season 9 and the 191st episode of the entire NCIS series.


NCIS and CGIS conduct a joint-investigation when a Coast Guard officer is shot dead during a night-time examination of a mysterious ship with the NCIS team soon discovering that Lebanese family has been secretly stowing away on the ship and begin questioning them but some of the family are not who they claim to be. Things later take a turn for the worse when Abby discovers evidence suggesting that a potentially devastating terrorist attack is about to happen, one that if successful could completely destroy half of the Norfolk Naval Base while Tony, McGee and Ziva with Borin's help attempt to find the right woman for Gibbs.


It's late night at the Norfolk Harbor.

A lone Coast Guard vessel sails through the water, the speaker talking to the giant ship and stating that they've entered United States territorial waters with the speaker also announcing that United States Coast Guard agents are boarding for inspection and to respond.

Seconds later, Petty Officer Third Class Kyle Sterling and Petty Officer Third Class Ben Cooper, wearing visible orange jackets and carrying guns arrive on the ship, having scaled it via a ladder,

Once he's checked the area, Sterling states that it's clear.

He then holsters his gun and produces his rifle.

He also examines that smugglers come all this way just to run out of gas.

Cooper agrees, stating that it looks like they decided to swim the last stretch.

As they walk deeper into the area, Sterling wonders if they're taking bets in regards to the cargo before asking Cooper what does he think? Drugs? Weapons?

"Unnamed tramp DIW off the coast of Norfolk? Eh", Cooper says.

He believes it's probably a load of knock-off sunglasses.

"United States Coast Guard!", Sterling yells.

There's no respond.

Sterling believes that the smugglers bailed.

Cooper agrees, telling Sterling to radio the ship and have them scan the water for anyone who didn't realize it's ten miles to shore.

Sterling has lowered his weapon, something having gotten his interest.

Suddenly, gunfire erupts, causing the two CGIS agents to duck.

Cooper gets hit and falls to the ground as Sterling ducks behind some crates with Sterling calling Cooper but there's no reply from Cooper whatsoever.

It then cuts to Sterling who's now behind the crate, his gun drawn as he reports that shots have been fired on deck and that there's a man down.

Act One

Gibbs after he, Tony, Ziva and CGIS Special Agent Abigail Borin have discovered a family from Lebanon stowing away on the ship.

Act Two

At the crime scene, Gibbs tells NCIS Director Leon Vance that he's kind of busy with Vance stating that he knows and that's why he called before asking for an update.

"Family wants asylum", Gibbs explains. "We want a killer".

Act Three

Act Four

Act Five


Series Regulars

Name Portrayed by Role
Leroy Jethro Gibbs Mark Harmon Special Agent in charge of the NCIS Major Case Response Team.
Anthony DiNozzo Michael Weatherly Senior Special Agent of the NCIS Major Response Team.
Ziva David Cote de Pablo Junior Special Agent of the NCIS Major Response Team.
Abigail Sciuto Pauley Perrette Chief Forensic Specialist of the NCIS Major Response Team.
Timothy McGee Sean Murray (actor) Special Agent of the NCIS Major Response Team.
Leon Vance Rocky Carroll Director of NCIS.
Donald Mallard David McCallum Chief Medical Examiner of the NCIS Major Response Team.

Recurring Cast

Name Portrayed by Role
Abigail Borin Diane Neal Special Agent with the CGIS- Coast Guard Investigative Service.
Clayton Jarvis Matt Craven Secretary of the Navy.

Other Cast

Name Portrayed by Role
Mariam Bawali Shohreh Aghdashloo A Lebanese refugee as well as the wife of Farid Bawali and mother of Rafiq and Hakim Bawali.
Farid Bawali David Diaan A Lebanese refugee who is the husband of Mariam Bawali and father of Rafiq and Hakim Bawali.
Rafiq Bawali Raffi Barsoumian A Lebanese refugee who is the son of Mariam and Farid Bawali and the brother of Hakim Bawali.
Hakim Bawali Wesam Keesh A Lebanese refugee who is the son of Mariam and Farid Bawali and the brother of Rafiq Bawali.
Kyle Sterling Ross Thomas Petty Officer Third Class in the United States Coast Guard Service.
Ben Cooper Brandon Fobbs Petty Officer Third Class in the United States Coast Guard Service and the main murder victim.
Rebeka Hooper Toks Olagundoye Immigration attorney for the Bawalis.
  v - e - dNCIS Season 9
Nature of the Beast (episode)Restless (episode)The Penelope Papers (episode)Enemy on the Hill (episode)Safe Harbor (episode)Thirst (episode)Devil's Triangle (episode)Engaged (Part 1) (episode)Engaged (Part 2) (episode)Sins of the Father (episode)Newborn King (episode)Housekeeping (episode)A Desperate Man (episode)Life Before His Eyes (episode)Secrets (episode)Psych Out (episode)Need to Know (episode)The Tell (episode)The Good Son (episode)The Missionary Position (episode)Rekindled (episode)Playing with Fire (episode)Up in Smoke (episode)Till Death Do Us Part (episode)