Alert: Missing Persons Unit finale: Who was Keith?

ALERT: MISSING PERSONS UNIT: L-R: Dania Ramirez and Scott Caan in the “Brianna/Max” two-hour season finale episode of ALERT: MISSING PERSONS UNIT airing Monday, Feb. 27 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2023 Fox Media LLC. CR: Philippe Bosse/FOX
ALERT: MISSING PERSONS UNIT: L-R: Dania Ramirez and Scott Caan in the “Brianna/Max” two-hour season finale episode of ALERT: MISSING PERSONS UNIT airing Monday, Feb. 27 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2023 Fox Media LLC. CR: Philippe Bosse/FOX /

Warning: This article contains SPOILERS for the Season 1 finale of Alert: Missing Persons Unit.

Since the beginning, Alert: Missing Persons Unit has teased the key question if Keith, the long-missing son of Jason and Nikki, is in fact, who he says he is. Suspicions have been raised since the pilot ended with Keith shown tearing up a notebook filled with personal stories he should know about. There have also been bits like how he’s suddenly right-handed and not knowing a few details, like his father’s classic car.

His sister, Sidney, has been convinced Keith is an imposter, despite a DNA test confirming his identity. She finally confessed to her parents that years before, she saw Keith fall through into an icy lake and drown. She was too ashamed ever to say anything.

Keith claimed he’d escaped the pond only for someone to kidnap him. When the body in the lake was found not to be Keith, Sidney accepted this was her brother.

However, the season finale revealed the shocking truth behind Keith that no one expected.

What was the truth about Keith in Alert: Missing Persons Unit?

The team was tracking Beth Coltoin, aka Elizabeth, the woman who abducted Keith. A former trauma surgeon, Beth had been kidnapping various boys over the years to use as organ donors in a vain attempt to keep her dying son alive. That included Keith’s new friend, Max.

Nikki was briefly abducted by Beth before Jason and Mike rescued her. Keith identified Beth and that seemed to be it, only for Keith to be taken by another woman. At the same time, the family realized Beth didn’t quite match the profile for kidnapping Keith.

They tracked Keith to the home of a woman called Evelyn, with Evelyn taunting them about Keith’s “secret.” When Keith called Evelyn “mom,” the truth finally came out: “Keith” was actually Lucas, Evelyn’s real son.

Evelyn had seen a TV show about Keith and realized Lucas bore enough of a resemblance to pass for him. She pored over every detail she could on the family for Lucas to know about and he used his own hair to fake the DNA test. This whole thing was a scam to fake a kidnapping so Nikki and Jason would pay a hefty ransom for their “son.”

Nikki and Jason were rocked to realize they’d fallen for this as Lucas claimed he’d come to love the family so much better than his own and couldn’t go through with it. He and Evelyn ended up fighting over a gun, with Evelyn shooting Lucas dead before being arrested. It also turned out Oliver was the one Beth had abducted long ago and Lucas used that story for his own scam.

What does this mean for Alert: Missing Persons Unit?

Speaking to TV Insider, showrunner John Eisendrath confirmed the Keith twist had been planned all along and hopes fans understand and even sympathize with the troubled young man.

"“I feel like the fact that he’s not Keith does a few things. First of all, it speaks to an incredibly heartrending young man who felt that he had to pretend to be someone he’s not in order to be a part of the type of family he never had. That is incredibly emotional, and painful. I mean, here’s a kid who fantasized about being part of a loving family, and when we reveal that that is his reason for having done something that otherwise might seem villainous, might seem evil, I hope it makes us not only understand his journey but really feel for him. And I believe that that’s how Nikki and Jason are ultimately going to feel.”"

Eisendrath added that while it’s painful to have fallen for this fake son, Jason and Nikki can now see some closure with Keith, as Sidney is also open about what happened. Yet this was a wild twist to close out the first season of Alert: Missing Persons Unit and makes everything about the show worth rewatching.

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Alert: Missing Persons Unit Season 1 is available to stream on Hulu.