Natasha Romanova (Rus: Наташа Романова; 1959–2016) was a suspect in two murder investigations before being incarcerated for launching a SOMBRA satellite and for ordering the hit on Russian senator Vitaly Borodin in Countdown to Murder (Case #18 of World Edition). She made her debut in a video appearance in Die by the Sword (Case #12 of World Edition) and also appeared as a quasi-suspect in Only Truth Remains (Case #14 of World Edition). In The Darkest Hour (Case #56 of World Edition), Natasha escaped prison and was murdered. She made a posthumous video appearance as a child in Crime and Punishment (Case #10 of Travel in Time).
Natasha was the 56-year-old head of COSMORUS and mother of the Bureau's profiler Marina Romanova. She had short, wavy red hair, brown eyes and wrinkles. She wore a dark forest green blazer with white collar over a white top, as well as a matching skirt and black heels. She also sported a COSMORUS badge on her left lapel, a golden band around her neck and red nail polish.
In her first suspect appearance, it is known that Natasha drank vodka, ate beef stroganoff and read Tolstoy.
In her quasi-suspect appearance onwards, her badge appeared slightly larger.
In her second suspect appearance, it is discovered that she smoked cigarettes and ate pelmeni.
In her third suspect appearance, it is revealed that she ate beshbarmak, knew physics and played Fletris.
In her appearance in Travel in Time, Natasha was a 10-year-old kid with neck-length red hair adorned with a blue headband. She is seen wearing a white blouse adorned with a red bow underneath red and black overalls. Additionally, Natasha is often seen carrying a stuffed light blue rabbit.
Events of Criminal Case
Natasha had requested the player's help via a USB key delivered by a parachute, which was found in the destroyed town. On the message, Natasha explained the situation at hand: she believed COSMORUS, the Russian space agency, had been infiltrated by foreign spies. Saying that a security breach could compromise the world's data infrastructure, she formally requested the help of the Bureau. Her daughter, Marina believed that her mother should not be trusted, but Chief Ripley decided that she should be helped.
Natasha met the player at the Bureau HQ in Moscow to brief the player on the situation. Her new project was nearing completion, and she explained about the rumors of there being a mole in the organization. She decided to meet the player at the Red Square, to get a feel for Moscow. Upon arriving with Jack, a body was found, and Natasha recognized who it was, immediately labeling her as a suspect. She said the victim's name was Darya Chernova, a COSMORUS employee who worked with her for years. Natasha believed Darya would not hurt a fly, but then she suggested Darya uncovered the mole and was killed for it, but Jack informed Natasha not to jump to conclusions yet.
Natasha was spoken to again regarding the possibility that Darya was the mole in COSMORUS. She was shocked upon hearing the possibility, saying she trusted the victim implicitly. When asked what information Darya had access to, to see if any of it was leaked, Natasha said she could not say anything as that information was classified. When suggested she found out already and killed her for it, Natasha said she was a government official, not some common thug.
Natasha was found to be innocent after the team incarcerated Liam Hall for Darya's murder. But Marina still had suspicions about her mother and decided to track her movements. After Elliot analyzed her files, he found Natasha wanted to bring down a criminal organization. Marina asked her mother if anything was in it for her, but Natasha said it was her job as a government official to report any misuse of public funds. Natasha hoped Marina would get over her vendetta against the government, but Marina pointed out her near-death experience for bringing down the Russian president.
After investigating the Lermontov estate looking for more clues to SOMBRA, the player and Carmen discovered a faded document and, after dusting it, it revealed a lot of writings in Russian and the logo of COSMORUS. Realizing the document contained the information Darya leaked, Carmen suggested taking it to Natasha with the hopes of her telling them what that information was about. Natasha, more worried now than she was in Moscow, told Carmen and the player that the writings were launch codes, which could be used to launch something like a rocket or a missile to space, although the geographical coordinates were missing. Knowing that such an important piece of information in hands of an evil organization could compromise the entire world's situation, the Bureau was more eager to follow SOMBRA's steps very closely.
Natasha became a suspect in a murder investigation again after the player and Carmen found her credit card outside the train. She said she was on her way to inspect a COSMORUS facility herself given the compromised state. When informed of Ilya's murder, she was shocked as he gave private donations to COSMORUS. When Carmen questioned if it was legal, Natasha said he simply donated as a private citizen due to his love of space.
Natasha was interrogated again after it was discovered that the victim was going to stop giving donations to COSMORUS. She would believe the victim would reconsider, especially if he stayed alive. But given the situation at the moment she did not have time to worry about one man stopping his donations.
Natasha was found to be innocent again after the team incarcerated Nikita Rukhin for Ilya's murder. However, before they reached Mongolia, she was spoken to twice regarding SOMBRA's plans. The first time was over a COSMORUS circuit board, which as stolen. She was furious, especially since she called the player over to prevent this from happening. The second time was regarding someone in COSMORUS aiding SOMBRA still. It was at that point that Natasha refused to aid The Bureau any further, as she felt they kept accusing the victims.
Natasha became a suspect yet again after she identified the victim found on the crime scene. She assured the player and Jack that the rocket was not going anywhere especially if SOMBRA was involved. When asked why the victim was at the launch site, she was just as clueless as they were, but knew the victim was not invited. She felt he wanted to bug her about the new law he wanted to pass using COSMORUS to spy on people from space; which she did not like as they were a scientific organization, not a security system the government can just use.
Natasha was interrogated again regarding a message she sent saying to take care of the victim. When they went to speak with her, she felt there was a rogue agent in COSMORUS, despite denying it previously. Regarding the message, she said it was not about having him killed. She said he wanted to replace her as the head of COSMORUS, and could do so as the lead senator in the Security and Defense Committee. So, she sent that message to one of her friends in the Federation Council to persuade Vitaly.
Though Natasha was found innocent of Vitaly's murder directly after the team incarcerated Yelena Tereshkova for the crime, it was revealed that not only was she the one who had Yelena kill Vitaly, but she was also the SOMBRA agent who launched the satellite. She managed to escape just after launching the satellite, and Jack made sure to pursue her, leaving the player with Marina to follow her trail. Marina and the player went to the launch control room and found Natasha’s cell phone, which Marina was able to unlock herself. She found a text message: “Hide in the egg until sunrise.” Thanks to Dupont, the team discovered that the egg was the observation deck of the Bayterek tower. Marina and the player met Jack there, but they also discovered that Anya Ivanova was there. While Marina was angered at seeing Anya, the latter remarked that the MGB and the Bureau could work together to bring Natasha to justice.
Anya told Marina, Jack, and the player that she saw a woman with a red bob haircut wearing a green suit rushing into the observation tower. Although, Anya remarked that she was surprised to see this woman looking into a trash can and then panic as she could not find the thing she was looking for. Marina was prompted to look around the tower and found a metal briefcase with wads of cash. The player went through the suitcase to find a note addressed to Natasha from SOMBRA; Marina was able to translate the note, saying: “So long and thanks for all the fish”, signifying that SOMBRA was actually dumping her rather than helping her escape. Just then, Natasha appeared asking where the briefcase was at. Marina drew her gun and immediately told her mother to confess everything.
Natasha told her daughter that she wanted power. SOMBRA later promised her all of Russia if she launched the satellite and that when the current government fell, she would take over. Marina then told her mother that SOMBRA had left her a note telling her that they were leaving her. Natasha panicked, asking for protection, and the player placed her under arrest and confiscating the SOMBRA money as evidence.
Judge Adaku was ecstatic when he found out he was having a double trial, something he had not experienced since the old days. When he recognized Yelena as the killer of Vitaly Borodin, Yelena immediately exclaimed that Natasha tricked her into doing it. Natasha chimed in, saying that Yelena did not complete the mission, saying that she was supposed to launch the rocket as well. Now addressing Natasha, the judge took her words as a plea of guilty for launching a satellite that would hand control of the world to a criminal organization. Because Natasha betrayed the trust of the Bureau, the Russian people, and the entire world, she was given a 75-year sentence in a maximum security facility. Yelena, on the other hand, was given a 50-year sentence in prison.
Natasha was found at Times Square with her throat slashed. According to Grace, she was hit over the head first, then had her throat slashed. She also found bruises on the body, which according to Jonah, were consistent with military hand-to-hand combat techniques. This meant the killer had military training. Also, she found a business card belonging to Unified Nations High Commissioner Leila Malak, who the team met back in Alaska. This prompted the player and Carmen to bring Leila in for questioning.
Alongside Natasha's body, a bloody letter opener was found, and was immediately filed as the murder weapon. The letter opener had the logo of the Presidential Office on it, making the team conclude that Natasha had to be involved in the kidnapping to get into contact with such an object. According to Lars, the blood undoubtedly belonged to the victim. Traces of dust were found on the handle, which had the molecular structure of nonbenzodiazepines, or sedatives used to treat short term insomnia. This meant the killer took sleeping pills.
Relationship with suspects
Through various interrogations, it was revealed that Natasha was involved in the kidnapping of President James Hewett. Leila arranged for her to have a meeting with the President, mistaking her to be a Russian diplomat due to her clean record. When Natasha brought him to the cloisters, where her accomplices were, her killer slashed her throat with the letter opener and took both the weapon and the body in a van, which then released both of them as it rushed through Times Square, causing a major panic in the area.
Killer and motives
The killer turned out to be the US Vice President, Sarah Bennett.
After Sarah was able to escape arrest with the help of some FBI agents, Baxter Fraser told Jack and the player that President Hewett was being kept in the cloisters, thus revealing that he had been mind-controlled into helping Sarah and Natasha kidnap the President. With Dupont as their guide, they were able to find Sarah holding James at gunpoint. After saying that El Rey wanted to kill James personally, Sarah shot Jack. Since the bullet was only able to graze Jack's head, Sarah shot him again. However, Dupont took the bullet in the chest for Jack, who then shot Sarah in the head. Along with the player, he freed James and took Dupont to the hospital.
Per the events of the case, Natasha was murdered to expose her body in Times Square and make the United States blame Russia for the President's kidnapping, thus putting the world on the brink of World War III.
- Natasha shares her name with fictional superheroine Black Widow, who is mainly featured in the Marvel Comics universe.
- Natasha is one of the characters to appear as a suspect in three cases.
- Natasha is one of the characters to physically appear in two regions in the World Edition.
- Die by the Sword (Case #12 of World Edition; video appearance)
- Moscow Mole (Case #13 of World Edition)
- Only Truth Remains (Case #14 of World Edition)
- O Deadly Night (Case #15 of World Edition; mentioned)
- Fast Track to Murder (Case #16 of World Edition)
- Horseback Mountain (Case #17 of World Edition; mentioned)
- Countdown to Murder (Case #18 of World Edition)
- Diamond in the Rough (Case #40 of World Edition; mentioned)
- Politically Incorrect (Case #53 of World Edition; mentioned)
- Operation Spyfall (Case #54 of World Edition; mentioned)
- The Darkest Hour (Case #56 of World Edition)
- Gone in 30 Seconds (Case #7 of Travel in Time; mentioned)
- Crime and Punishment (Case #10 of Travel in Time; video appearance)
- ↑ Alive as of 1969, unknown as of 2016