Destruction of property; trashed the Galahads` garage [June 1984]
Took drugs while in medical school 
Assualted Phillip Spaulding [May 12th, 1989]
Fraud; involved in faking Phillip's death. [August to December 1990]
Covered for his father's crime of disconnecting Eve Guthrie's life support [May 1995]
Broke into Blake Marler's medical records to learn the parentage of Blake's unborn twins [May 16, 1996]
Assaulted the hospital administrator [March 18, 1997]
Falsely accused Jesse Blue of attacking Abby [August 25, 1997]
Paid someone to call Danny Santos, to get him away from the lighthouse, with a fake bomb threat at Carmen's house [June 18, 1999]
Sent two men to abduct Michelle Bauer Santos from the lighthouse [June 18, 1999]
Committed his sister, Michelle, to the mental ward at Cedars under false pretenses [June 19 - 29, 1999]
Helped Phillip cover the fact Phillip & Beth made love [Late 1999 to mid 2000]
Helped Michelle Bauer Santos escape from prison [March 15, 2000]
Hid Jesse Blue's EKG results to hide that Jesse really didn't have a heart attack [March 20, 2000]
Produced a phony EKG result, for Jesse Blue, to show Drew Jacobs, to make Drew believe that Jesse really had heart attack [March 22, 2000]
Failed to report the whereabouts of an escaped convict: Harley cooper. [May 27, 2005]
Lied about the results of his exhumation of Phillip's crypt; lied that Phillip was dead. [August 19, 2005 to May 17, 2006]
Indirectly caused Ross Marler's death by paying a mechanic, at Phillip's request, to tamper with Ross's plane to keep it on the ground. [early April 2006]
Kept Alan Spaulding sedated in an effort to woo Beth Raines [February 19, 2007 to April 2007]
Kept quiet about the fact that the child Beth was carrying was not his [July 9, 2007 to Spring 2008]
Sedated a blackmailing Edmund Winslow so that Jeffrey could deal with him [December 3, 2007]
Attempted to kidnap Peyton (reconsidered) [May 20, 2008]
Named after his great-grandfather, Fredrick Bauer, born in 970, was raised by his mother after his parents' divorce. However when Leslie married the wealthy Stanley Norris a year later, Ed refused to let Freddie be raised in the Norris home and took custody of the boy. When Stanley died shortly after, Leslie regained custody of Freddie in 1972. In 1973, a young Freddie was on hand to witness the wedding of his mother and his uncle, Mike. A happy child, his life was shattered by the death of his mother in 1976 when he was only 6 years old. Though his stepmother, Holly, tried to fill a void in his life, he received a lot more comfort from his grandmother, Bert. With the support of the Bauer family, Freddie grew up to be a kind generous man and, in 1978, he left to attend Lincoln Prep School.
Freddie first appeared as a teenager in 1982. After being thrown out of Lincoln Prep, he quickly paired up with his "partner-in-crime", lifelong friend Phillip Spaulding when Phillip covered for Freddie when he was pulled over for speeding and didn't have his driver's license. Meanwhile Phillip was hanging out with a rough crowd for a couple of weeks. When Phillip and Freddie were nearly involved in an accident Phillip and Freddie realized that perhaps the crowd they were hanging out with really weren't their friends and they stopped associating with them. In 1983, Freddie, now calling himself Rick, began dating the innocent Beth Raines, while Phillip got involved with Mindy Lewis. In the fall of that year, Rick decided to follow into Ed's footsteps and become a doctor. Meanwhile, Phillip and Beth had fallen in love and they ran off to escape her stepfather, Bradley, to New York, Worried about their friends, Mindy and Rick followed and formed a bond while working at Circus Underground.
In New York, a sidewalk Santa named Nick assisted Rick and Mindy in their search after Rick saved Nick’s life from a heart attack. When Trudy, Rick and Mindy’s boss, bought one of Beth’s drawings—a portrait of Phillip as a clown—for $20, the picture led Rick and Mindy to right to Phillip and Beth. By January 1984 the group was back in Springfield. Rick and Mindy fell in love while in New York. When Mindy discovered that she was pregnant by Phillip, she told Rick the truth. Rick told Ed and Maureen while Mindy told her stepmother, Vanessa, and swore her to secrecy. After they all returned to Springfield, Phillip and Beth made plans for their February wedding. Mindy decided to have an abortion but changed her mind. Rick decided that the baby needed a father so Rick proposed but Mindy turned him down by saying that they were too young and not ready for marriage. Rick told Billy that he wanted to marry Mindy but Billy agreed that the pair wasn't ready. Then Rick announced that they HAD to get married as there was a baby involved.
A furious Billy went to Ed and yelled at him for being a bad father for not keeping a closer eye on Rick. Ed shot back that Phillip was the father, not Rick. Billy went to the church where Beth and Phillip were about to be married and confronted Mindy. He wanted to know if it was true that the father of her baby was really Phillip and Mindy confessed. Beth was standing nearby and overheard. Beth left Phillip at the altar. Meanwhile, Phillip wanted to be part of the baby anyway but Mindy would only allow this if he would marry her. Phillip finally reluctantly agreed despite his love for Beth. Phillip married Mindy and they spent their honeymoon at Cross Creek. The marriage would dissolve, however, when Mindy miscarried the baby. In the meantime, Rick became good friends with young Cedar's doctor, Louie Darnell, who became his roommate in the Bauer garage apartment. Louie listened "on and on" (or that's the way it came across to him) about Rick lamenting still being a virgin. Then one day, during one of Rick's visits to the older Louie at the hospital, Louie convinced Rick to get into an illegal poker game with him. Quickly running out of things to bet, and Louie still unhappy that Dr. Claire Ramsey had turned him down, Louie bet Rick that he couldn't lose his virginity to the frigid Claire. Louie would end up losing that bet.
Afterwards Rick fell in love with Roxie Shayne, a woman he had saved from Kyle Sampson and rejected Mindy who wanted to win him back. Mindy brought Roxie's abusive ex Dub Taylor to town to try to break them up. However the plan didn't succeed and only alienated Rick from Mindy. When Roxie went to Alaska in early 1985 to save Billy from Kyle's schemes, she had an accident, lost her memory and ended up in a brothel. Rick went searching for her and while Roxie and a man she met in Alaska, Kurt Corday were in bed, Rick burst in! Having no idea she had amnesia, Rick called Roxie a whore. Roxie of course had no idea who Rick was, and ended up marrying Kurt. Later Roxie and Kurt settled in Springfield and started working at Company. A regretful Rick helped Roxie regain her memory and also helped her remember that she was raped when she was twelve. Rick refused to give up on Roxie even though she felt unworthy of his love, and he began to investigate Kurt. Rick discovered that Kurt was an illegal alien from Canada and to keep Kurt and Roxie apart, he reported this to immigration officials. To his shock, Roxie married Kurt again to keep him in the country. The immigration officials gave Kurt a reprieve and then he and Roxie had their marriage annulled. Rick forgave Roxie and they soon made love and then became engaged.
In 1986, the long hours of classes and study required by the accelerated medical school program put a strain on Rick’s relationship with Roxie. They had very little time together, and Rick’s choice of fellow student Amber Novak as his study partner increased tension between the lovers. After learning that her sister, Reva was in the hospital after jumping off a bridge, a distraught Roxie sought comfort from Rick, who cancelled his plans to study with Amber for an exam the following day. As the weeks went by, Roxie’s need for emotional support caused Rick to neglect his studies and fall behind. Claire told him that unless he got it together in a week, he would have to quit the program. Later, unable to stay awake to complete his work, but desperate to become a doctor, Rick took a caffeine pill that Peter, a fellow med student, offered him. However, Rick began falling even further and further behind and it didn’t take long for Rick to switch from caffeine tablets to uppers in order to stay awake. Rick soon confided in Amber that Roxie’s needs (she’d just entered the Sampson girl contest) were interfering with his studies. Amber recommended that Rick tell Roxie that unless she could be more supportive, Rick was going to have to make a choice between medicine and his relationship. In the meantime, Rick’s dependence on uppers continued to grow. Believing that he was being helpful, Peter offered to get Rick a prescription of his own. Rick, whose moods were becoming increasingly erratic, agreed and started using stronger amphetamines.
When Rick’s behavior became more and more manic, Amber started to suspect that Rick was using drugs. Although she tried to discuss the problem with Ed, he was too preoccupied with his new baby, Michelle. So Amber followed up on her intuition about Rick. Using a bobby pin, she picked open the lock on his locker and found a bottle of amphetamines hidden in one of his shoes! When Rick returned to the on-call room, she confronted him. Rick admitted to Amber that he’d used amphetamines once or twice, and then threw the pills into the trash. However, after Amber left, he retrieved the uppers, unaware that Claire had overheard his conversation and observed his actions! Spotting an opportunity to hurt Ed through his son, Claire subtlety supported Rick’s use of drugs by persuading him that “any action was justified when it was carried out in the name of medicine.” In the meantime, Amber threatened to report that Peter was a drug dealer unless he quit selling pills to Rick. In the meantime, Roxie desperately wanted Rick to be with her at the Sampson Girl pageant and extracted a promise from him to be there - no matter what. Amber tried to warn Rick that they had no way of knowing when they would finish their work at the hospital; however, Rick was confident that he could “do it all.” During rounds, Claire realized that Rick was anxious to get to the contest. Still bitter towards Ed, she took it out on Rick by detaining him after she let the other students go, An exhausted and distraught Rick tried to cope with the pressure and fatigue by taking another pill. As he was about to swallow it, Claire caught him.
Meanwhile, Roxie was overwhelmed with disappointment when Rick didn’t show up and ended up sleeping with Jackson Freemont. At the same time, Claire confronted Rick about the pill he was about to take, but Amber covered for him by stating that he had an ulcer. Claire pretended to accept the lie, but then asked med student Briggs to watch for signs of drug abuse among the med students. Anyone who was caught on drugs will be dismissed from the program. Later, at home, Rick tried to reach Roxie at the club. Unable to locate her over the phone, Rick ended up falling asleep while Amber wrote Roxie a note explaining that Rick missed the contest because he was held up at the hospital. When Roxie arrived home and read Amber’s note, she took it as evidence that Rick preferred Amber! Later, while professing their love, Rick and Roxie lied to each other about what happened the night of the contest. Not long after, Rick was stunned to learn that Bert had died. When Amber caught a distressed Rick ready to take another pill, she advised him to give up the drugs for Bert.
Meanwhile, Briggs continued to look for evidence of Rick’s addiction. After the funeral, friends and relatives gathered at the Bauer’s’. As they paid tribute to Bert, Rick was tense and inconsolable. Eventually, he admitted to Amber that he felt he let his grandmother down by being hooked on drugs. He then decided, on Amber’s advice, to swear them off for good. Afterwards, Amber comforted Rick with a kiss, which Roxie spotted and misinterpreted. Later, to prove to Amber that he could quit his habit, Rick tore up the prescriptions for amphetamines that Peter had obtained for him, leaving the pieces in an ashtray. Briggs, who had been following Rick and looking for evidence of addiction, found the torn prescriptions and pocketed them. Meanwhile, Ed decided to file for sole custody of Michelle. When Claire was unable to convince Ed to drop the custody suit, she went to Rick and presenting him with the torn prescription forms, she ordered him to convince Ed and Mo to stop trying to take Michelle away from her. When Rick told Amber about Claire’s ultimatum, she advised him to tell his father and Roxie everything. Rick refused though since he believed it would hurt them too much. Rick and Amber started growing even closer as Rick struggled to stay off pills. Their relationship continued to worry Roxie until finally she and Rick had it out. They almost reconciled, but Peter interrupted them. When Roxie stormed out, Peter offered Rick more uppers, but Rick refused. Later, Rick overheard Claire threaten Michelle with physical abuse. Then Rick saw an overwrought Claire rush out, leaving the baby alone in the apartment. After Rick asked Amber to stay with the baby, Rick rushed out to confess everything to his father.
Soon after, Roxie learned of Rick’s drug use when she found an empty bottle of amphetamines in the apartment. Roxie was hurt that Rick didn’t confide in her and instead accepted help from Amber in kicking his habit. Hurt, Roxie moved out and she and Rick broke up. In the meantime, Claire’s behavior started becoming increasingly paranoid and erratic. During the med school finals, in a pique of anger, she gave Rick an “F” before even reading the exam. Days after, Claire ended up in a coma after being thrown off a bridge by Cain. With Claire in a coma, Rick went to the medical board in the hopes that his final could be reviewed since he was certain that he’d passed the test. Unfortunately, the crucial paper had fallen into the trash. Knowing that his only chance to pass med school lied in Claire’s recovery, Rick kept vigil at her bedside, hoping his words would help her come out of her coma. Later, Rick’s vigil over Claire paid off. He was nearby when Peter pulled the plug on Ramsey’s life support system and Claire began breathing on her own. Days later, she regained consciousness, but there were large gaps in her memory. She didn’t remember anything about her vendetta against the Bauers or about Rick’s failed exam! Weeks later, with bits of her memory returning, Claire decided to appear before the medical board at Cedars to describe the circumstances which led to her failing Rick’s medical school exam. The hospital board met and, over Alan Spaulding’s objections, decided to give Rick an opportunity to prove that he’s a qualified doctor. All he had to do was retake his med school final. But Rick almost blew it again when he accidentally took Claire’s sleeping pills instead of aspirin. With the help of his friends - who poured coffee down his throat and water over his head - a groggy Rick completed the test and passed the re-examination with a B-.
Rick's first patient almost became his last when Chelsea Reardon and her fiancé, Jean-Claude Laval had a car accident and Jean-Claude died due to crash-related injuries, Chelsea sued Rick for malpractice. Luckily, Johnny, Rick's distant cousin learned that Jean-Claude was a diabetic and thus may have fallen unconscious behind the wheel. Free of all charges, Rick moved to Chicago. In 1987, Rick was asked by Chelsea to visit town to comfort a troubled Phillip. When Phillip was shot by a killer, Rick saved him and decided to stay. By this time Roxie was dating Johnny and Rick then began dating Meredith Reade, a doctor at Cedar's. Meredith and Rick's relationship came under strain however when Johnny became ill with cancer. Meredith felt that they should stick with conventional treatment, while Rick supported Johnny's holistic approach. After a brief estrangement, the couple got back together and soon became engaged. Days before their wedding in November 1988, Rick learned a horrible truth: during their estrangement, Meredith slept with another man and was pregnant with that man's child! Stunned, Rick went through with the wedding, and then confronted his new wife. Regretfully, Meredith admitted to the indiscretion but refused to name the father. Though in shock, Rick stood by Meredith and agreed to raise the child. However, the delivery in 1989 didn't go smoothly and Rick was forced to choose between Meredith's life or the baby's...he chose Meredith. Only later, in a letter from Alan, did Rick learn the identity of the child's father: Phillip. Betrayed, Rick bitterly wrote Phillip out of his life, though eventually he forgave him. Though he was willing to give his marriage another try, when Meredith learned that she could no longer have children, she left Rick because she knew how much he wanted a family.
Now single, Rick busied himself by helping Phillip with his complicated love life and family problems. Then came Phillip's announcement that he believed Beth was alive! This was based on the fact that Alan confessed to Phillip that he'd forged Beth's death certificate. Though he tried to support Phillip, Rick didn't really believe it. At the same time, Rick enjoyed a brief relationship with a young woman named Dana Jones. Unfortunately for Rick, Dana didn't feel the same and set it up so he'd see her hitting on Rusty Shayne. Meanwhile, Rick was becoming more and more concerned about Phillip who became obsessed with finding Beth. Phillip's obsession landed him in a mental hospital where he saw Beth! Though skeptical at first, Rick was shocked when he saw her also! Overjoyed that she was alive, he was nonetheless concerned with her amnesia and her relationship with the shady Neil Everest. In 1990, Rick reconciled with Mindy and wanted to marry her. Unfortunately at this time Mindy also fell for the nefarious Roger Thorpe and chose him over Rick, even though Roger was married to Alexandra. When Neil ended up dead and Phillip was accused to the crime. Working together to secure Phillip's innocence, Rick agreed to help him fake his death to avoid imprisonment by stealing a corpse from Cedars and burning it beyond recognition. When policeman A.C. Mallet grew suspicious of Phillip's convenient "death", Rick married Beth to throw Mallet off. At the same time, when it became clear that Roger wasn't going to divorce Alex, Mindy regretted the affair and tried to rekindle her romance with Rick. Unfortunately she was too late since Rick was now married to Beth who he really fell in love with but realized her love for Phillip. Finally, Phillip was cleared of Neil's murder, but he, Beth and Rick were sentenced to community service because they'd faked his death. Ashamed, Rick left Springfield in February 1991.
In March 1995, Rick returned to Springfield after Ed asked him to treat his fatally ill fiancée, Eve Guthrie. Rick was pleased to help his father and immediately liked Eve. However, after he learned that Eve had a large tumor and leukemia, he was wary about performing surgery on her and wanted to leave town again. Ed's desperate pleas changed his mind and he finally performed the surgery. When Eve confessed that she had caught a mysterious illness in Cambrai years ago, she became first test person for a new medicine that was created by Dr. Randall Peters. Though Ed was dismayed by Eve's decision and preferred Rick's therapy, he supported Eve’s decision. Finally, Eve went into a coma and knowing that she wouldn't want to be hooked up to machines, Ed disconnected her life support. Though Rick caught him and tried to rescue Eve along with an arriving Charles Grant, it was too late and Eve died after suffering a heart attack. Distressed, Rick let himself be comforted by Mindy and confessed everything to her. Worried that she’d have to testify against Ed, and since she was leaving town anyway, Mindy hurriedly left. Now Rick tried to prevent Ed from confessing what he’d done but after Lillian accused Rick of killing Eve, Ed told her everything and asked her to keep quiet. Soon Charles headed an investigation about Eve's death and, while Rick regretted that he had been unsuccessful in saving Eve and tried to cover for Ed, Lillian's answer depended on Charles decision. However, to Rick's surprise, Lillian lied to Charles that there was no sabotage and Charles declared Eve's death as natural. His job finally over, Rick decided to leave town again but after Charles told him how much he respected his work, and since Rick felt at home again in Springfield, he decided to stay and return to Cedars, whereupon he started to head a trauma team.
Meanwhile, unbeknownst to everyone, Rick had married Annie Dutton in Chicago but he later had also divorced her due to her alcoholic problems and her affair with a man named Jake. Now, Annie was in love with Josh and Rick was dismayed that Annie hadn't told Josh about their past. But Rick kept quiet about this to Ed until Ed accidentally found his and Annie's marriage photo. Ed reprimanded Rick and realized that he was still in love with Annie. After Josh and Annie got engaged, Rick confronted Josh with the suspicion that Josh was still in love with the presumed dead Reva. Not long after, Rick was shocked to learn from Annie that they were still legally married because their lawyer died before he was able to complete the divorce procedures. Since a quick divorce was only able in Mexico and Annie didn't want to wait to marry Josh, she asked Rick for the divorce but he angrily refused and urged Annie to tell Josh the truth instead. However, after he and Matt Reardon got into a fight in a bar with some guys, Rick made up with Annie and learned that Hawk Shayne had told Josh the truth. Since Josh had disowned Annie from his life, Rick reprimanded him and comforted Annie. Not long after, Rick and Annie went to Mexico to finalize their divorce but Rick thought also he could win Annie back. Arriving in a shabby hotel room, they were unable to sleep due to the rain and kissed until Annie pulled back and told him they would regret making love. Just then, Josh suddenly arrived and, after he declared his love for Annie and they got engaged again, a devastated Rick had no choice but to go through with the divorce.
Later, back home, Rick came across the deaf Abby Blume whom he had already met weeks earlier in the Amish community of Goshen, while trying to rescue a man with his trauma team and Annie. Because of Reva’s help, Abby was treated for her migraines at Cedars. Abby’s mother, Charlotte Blume, wanted her daughter to stay in the Amish town of Goshen. Rick made it clear that Abby was old enough to make her own decisions. Suddenly Abby disappeared and Charlotte blamed Rick for this, whereupon Rick found Abby in an abandoned building at 5th Street and rescued her from a fire. Soon after, Rick attended Josh and Annie's wedding and though they went through with it, the new marriage was illegal because Alex Spaulding arranged for Josh to find Reva alive minutes later. So Rick comforted Annie again and believed she would come back to him. Though Annie made it clear to him she was only in love with Josh, Rick didn't believe her. In January 1996, Rick went so far as to tell Josh that he would love Annie as much as Josh loved Reva. Then Hawk urged Rick to win Annie back and told him that Josh was in Cross Creek to meet Reva. So Rick immediately informed Annie about it and confessed his love for her. But Annie only loved Josh and Rick finally realized that he had definitely lost Annie.
Not long after, a depressed Rick went to a bar where he found Blake Marler flirting with a few men. Blake had problems with her husband Ross and after rescuing her from one of the men, Rick brought her home. They comforted each other, drank a few more drinks and finally had a one-night-stand. The next day, they regretted their lovemaking and when Ross suddenly arrived, Rick had to hide in the bathroom. Although Ross caught him there, he wasn't suspicious because Rick lied that he had brought a drunken Blake home and had spent the night on the sofa. A regretful Rick later confessed to Ed that he had slept with a married woman and when Ed realized it was Blake, he reprimanded Rick for his actions.
In the meantime, Rick discovered that Blake was pregnant with twins! He confronted Blake with the fact that the babies were his and though Ed told him to leave Blake alone, Rick kept pressuring her. Eventually, Blake showed Rick her paternity test which showed that Ross was the father of both babies. Disappointed, since he wanted to have children, Rick soon got closer to Abby and after he confessed to her his love, they finally became a couple. Later, Rick learned from Blake that Amanda Spaulding thought Blake’s twins were of two different fathers—one Rick, the other Ross. Shocked, Rick told Phillip everything and the friends went to Ross's office to stop Amanda from telling Ross her suspicion. Though Amanda did tell Ross everything, Rick and Blake were able to convince him that Amanda was lying. Meanwhile, Rick accidentally found pills in Annie's handbag and realized that she was addicted to them. Since Annie often treated drug-addicted patients, Rick suspended her. Though Josh didn't want to believe that Annie had a drug problem, he changed his mind after finding the pills from Detroit. After Rick staged an unsuccessful intervention, Annie spitefully told him that he was indeed father of one of Blake's twins! Shocked, Rick angrily confronted Blake and wanted her to tell Ross the truth but Blake refused. Though he considered confessing everything to Ross, Blake convinced him to keep quiet in order to preserve her marriage and his relationship with Abby.
By the end of the year, Blake suddenly disappeared and after Rick and Ross finally found her at the Bauer cabin, Blake went into labor and gave birth to the twins per c-section. Blake named them Kevin Ross and Jason Frederick. Though Rick thought Jason was his son, Ross's blood matched and Rick realized Kevin was actually his son. Throughout all of this, Rick found himself actually falling in love with Abby. Meanwhile, Rick was having trouble with his decision to deny Kevin as his son, a situation that didn't go unnoticed by Phillip. Although Phillip tried to convince him to tell Ross, Rick was afraid of Abby leaving him and refused. When Phillip remained adamant that Ross should know, Rick made plans to confess but found that he couldn't. At the same time, Phillip went to Rick saying that he couldn't ruin everyone's life--the secret was safe. In January 1997, Rick and Abby got engaged at the beach and Blake organized an engagement party for them. But while she was driving to the party, Blake had a car accident with her twins. Rick had to operate on Kevin and told Ross that Kevin was his son. Although he tried to convince Ross that it was a harmless one-night stand and he should forgive Blake, Ross felt betrayed and left his wife. Realizing that Abby would soon learn the truth, Rick decided it was best if she heard it from him and he confessed his indiscretion. Although he begged her forgiveness and explained that happened before he fell in love with her, Abby was horrified at what he'd done and the fact that he kept it a secret and she ran off. Very upset over Abby's leaving, a stressed out Rick ended up being suspended from Cedars when, after being criticized for treating indigent patients, he punched the hospital administrator, but later got his job back when he successfully treated a young girl with asthma. Under stress, Rick was pleasantly surprised when Abby offered to be a friend if he needed to talk.
In the meantime, Ed was gone and Rick had to contend with raising his teenage kid sister. At this point, Michelle became involved Jesse Blue who Rick really disapproved of. Trying to smooth things over, Abby went looking for Michelle one day and was attacked by Jesse's friend Roy Meechum. When Rick found an injured Abby at Jesse's garage apartment, he wrongfully came to the conclusion that it had been Jesse that had committed and for a while refused to even speak to Michelle because her lying was what made Abby go to see Jesse in the first place. However, Rick softened toward Michelle when he learned that it wasn't Jesse who attacked Abby. Later, when Abby was able to finger Roy Metchum as the man who attacked her she filed charges against him. Although Roy tried to scare Abby away by confronting her, she remained determined to make him pay for what he'd done and turned down Rick's marriage proposal since she figured he was only asking to protect her. Later, when Roy was set free on a technicality, Abby shot him in the courtroom, and despite his efforts, Rick was unable to save him. After failing to find a tape that could clear Abby, Rick was devastated when Abby agreed to Ben's plea bargain and serve time for manslaughter.
In February 1998, Rick took Phillip's advice and asked Abby to marry him before she went off to fulfill her 18-month prison sentence. After marrying at a Justice of the peace, Rick and Abby made love for the first time. Later, Blake gave Ross the WSPR tape (which Ben had stolen), which proved that Roy threatened Abby and that he talked with her about the attempted rape. Upon the realization that what she had done was justified, Abby was released from prison.. That summer, Rick became concerned about the Marler's when he visited Kevin and Jason one day and seeing a drunken Holly taking care of the twins. Later, when Blake was accidentally shot by Ross, Rick offered to take care of the boys and decided to fight for custody of Kevin. But then Rick received a shock from Ben--Annie had doctored the tests; both boys belonged to Ross. After running a second DNA test, Rick learned that Ben was telling the truth and was forced to grieve for the loss of the son he had grown to love.
In 1999, Rick was greatly disturbed when Michelle suddenly married Danny Santos, a member of the Santos mob family. Upon learning that Michelle only married Danny to avoid trouble because she'd accidentally killed his brother, Rick was later confused, and mortified, when it appeared the she was developing feelings for Danny. As he was dealing with Michelle's problems, Abby had cochlear implants put in her ears that enabled her to hear again, giving a whole new outlook on life for both of them. Meanwhile, Rick's concerns for Michelle grew, especially when there was a bomb scare at her second wedding to Danny at his cousin's church. Convinced that his sister's life was in danger, he pleaded with Michelle to leave the Santos home, but by this point, she really was in love with Danny. After failing to convince Danny to send Michelle away, Rick committed Michelle to the psychiatric ward at Cedars under false pretenses, hoping it would protect her. Although Abby tried to convince him to let Michelle make her own choices, he was obsessed with keeping her away from the Santoses.
Finally, in an effort to scare Rick, Abby staged a kidnapping from Danny so that Rick would know what it felt like to have his wife taken away. Soon after, after speaking with Phillip, Rick decided that he wasn't being fair to Michelle, and made plans to have her released. However, he was horrified to learn that Michelle had been sedated by the doctors there! Not long after, Danny took Michelle out of the hospital and challenged Rick to call the police. However he refuses, saying that he'd taken full responsibility for everything - and he finally realized he couldn't keep Michelle and Danny apart. Not long after, Rick was suspended from the hospital again, since he had admitted Michelle under false pretenses, but was reinstated after he saved Alan Spaulding's life following his heart attack. About this time, Rick began discussing the possibility of starting a family with Abby and was dismayed when she stated that she wasn't quite ready. In the meantime, after Michelle had finally forgiven Rick for locking her away at the hospital, Rick was horrified when she was arrested for Ben Warren's murder!
In 2000, Rick had to deal with Michelle's murder trial and Phillip's revelation that he and Beth slept together and she was pregnant with his child. When Michelle was convicted of Ben's murder, Danny and Jesse performed a jailbreak by having Jesse fake a heart attack, While Rick tended to Jesse (who later confessed that he was faking), Danny snuck out with Michelle and Rick faked medical records to cover up his involvement. Meanwhile, to deflect Harley's questions about Phillip's antagonism toward Edmund, Rick covered for his friend by saying that Edmund was blackmailing HIM. Then to Rick's horror he learned that Harley was investigating him. Though he tried to keep Harley from digging into his past, Harley learned Rick's little secret: he wasn't really a doctor. It was no secret that Rick was addicted to drugs in medical school, but what he never wanted anyone to ever find out was that he failed his medical boards because of it! It seems that the day of the test, Rick was too strung out and his mentor and former lover, Claire Ramsey, took the test for him. Though he took the test and passed a few years later, it wasn't valid since he was still practicing medicine under his illegal license. After a while, Rick finally confessed the truth to Phillip and Abby with mixed results: Abby told him to go public with the truth and Phillip told him to cover it up. Ultimately, Rick took Phillip's advice. Amidst all this turmoil, Rick and Abby's marriage continued to crumble. Though they both loved each other, it was obvious that they had different goals in life; he wanted children; she didn't and the pair divorced amicably. After his divorce became final, Rick decided to finally confess to the hospital board. It was then that he learned that Claire lied to him all along: he NEVER failed the exam. It was all a lie to keep Rick on edge. Disgusted with Claire, he told her to get help and continued his work at Cedars.
In 2001, the pain of Rick's divorce caused Rick to do something that would change his life. Months after Abby left him, Rick attended a "divorce party" for Harley, Phillip’s ex-wife. Harley was devastated by her divorce and the fact that Philip was out of town. During the party there was a lot of drinking going on and all the men (Rick included) passed out. Next thing Rick knew, he was awakened by the sound of Harley sobbing uncontrollably upstairs. Understanding her pain and wanting to comfort her, Rick went to Harley and held her. Both lonely and needing someone to hold onto they started to kiss and then made love. The next morning they woke up and vowed to never acknowledge what happened and vowed to tell no one. At the same time, since the end of the previous year, Rick had been enjoying the company of cigarette girl, May Merisi, and was later saddened to learn that she was actually an FBI agent trying to get information on the Santos family. Although May denied using Rick, he still felt betrayed and ended their relationship. Not long after, Rick received a shock--Harley announced she was pregnant! Throughout Harley's pregnancy, Rick developed a friendship and romantic interest in young ER intern Mel Boudreau, after initial disagreements over cases.
Near the end of her pregnancy, Harley was stopped for speeding in a little town called Brewster's Point. Though she tried to explain to the officer that she was a cop, he didn't believe her and had her thrown into the town's one person jail. Though she tried to call Rick but somehow there was a mix-up and FBI agent Gus Aitoro wound up taking the call. Thoroughly enjoying Harley's predicament, Gus went to Brewster's Point. However, Gus's amusement ended when suddenly Harley started having contractions in the empty police station and Harley informed him that he'd have to deliver her baby! Freaking out, Gus tried to get Harley out of the cell and ended up getting himself locked in the cell with her! Luckily, Rick, who figured out the phone mishap, found them and although he couldn't get in the cell, he talked Gus through the delivery. Despite it being a breech birth, Gus successfully delivered Harley and Rick's baby boy who, with a little help from Gus, Harley named Jude Cooper Bauer. Though Harley's pregnancy initially threatened Rick's friendship with Phillip, shortly after Jude's birth, the life-long friends were able to work through things. In the meantime, Harley - insecure over her feelings for Gus - proposed marriage to Rick. Seeing the chance for Jude to have the stable family he never had, Rick agreed. After several months of denial and a wedding postponed at the last minute, Rick saw Harley and Gus kissing in an upstairs bedroom of his home. Realizing he and Harley didn't love each other, he convinced her of the same, and they parted as friends.
Meanwhile, Rick and Mel dated, and Rick overcame her father and brother's strong objections to Rick's age and race. Rick and Mel made love at the Bauer cabin in the spring, and after Catalina Quesada's sudden murder in April 2002, Rick realized how short life is. He proposed to Mel at the hospital, and she accepted. Rick had everything: the girl of his dreams, a son, and a family. Naturally, it couldn't last. Before they could start making any real wedding plans, Rick's health took a turn for the worse. He had ignored his flu-like symptoms for weeks, finally collapsing in the middle of his and Mel's engagement party. She broke the news to him that his heart had been severely damaged by a virus, and he would only survive with a heart transplant. Mel moved up the wedding, and they were bolstered by the good news that Rick's name had been moved up to the high levels of the heart transplant list. Phillip arranged for the ceremony to take place in the atrium instead of a hospital room, and a blend of old and new made their wedding a truly special event. What made the wedding unforgettable was a last-minute appearance by Ed (who had been missing for 4 years). After meeting the bride, Ed gave his son away.
Rick's only chance of survival was a heart transplant. He was at the top of the organ transplant list, but when a heart did come up, he feigned a fever to give the heart to another man with a wife and young son. Mel was furious, but forgave him. Rick's health continued to decline, until he was near death. At the eleventh hour, Richard Winslow died and his wife Cassie agreed to give his heart to Rick. The next few weeks were very stressful, as Rick coped with pangs of guilt over seeing Richard's wife and children suffering while he lived. The visits and questions by Richard's daughter Tammy, who at times thought Rick would become Richard, only made him feel worse. After being released from the hospital, Rick paid a visit to Richard's grave, then left for a few months with Mel to go to a rehabilitation center.
2003 was a year of change for Rick--not only was he shocked when Mel decided to return to Law School, but he was also pleasantly surprised to get the job as Springfield's new medical examiner after the current coroner, Jed Simmons, was murdered. In the fall of that year, he not only celebrated Mel's passing the bar exam (and working with Blake and Harley at a non-profit investigative/legal aide firm called Harley's Angel's), but also Mel's pregnancy. But while things were looking good for him, they weren't good for Phillip who discovered that a deeply troubled Lizzie caused a pregnant Olivia Spencer (who was pregnant with Phillip's child) to fall. After weeks of suffering panic attacks, Phillip ended up locking himself into his loft on the pretense of writing a novel. However, Rick, concerned for his friend, located Phillip and told him that he was an excellent father and not responsible for Lizzie's problems. Despite Rick’s effort, Phillip’s conditioned worsened and he was admitted to Ravenwood mental hospital. As 2004 began, Rick remained concerned about Phillip who didn't seem to be getting better. He was equally concerned about Olivia, specifically whether she wanted Phillip to get better or not. Deciding to go behind Olivia's back, Rick told Phillip about a new ECT program electro-convulsive therapy) that might be able to help him. Phillip agreed to the procedure, which was conducted without Olivia's knowledge. Fortunately it worked and weeks later, Phillip was finally fit to be released from the hospital. That same year, Rick celebrated the birth of his daughter, Leah.
Months later, an unbalanced Phillip began waging a vendetta against the Cooper family. In an effort to get through to Phillip, Rick arranged for him to be kidnapped so they could talk. Although Rick tried to reason with Phillip, his only succeeded in making Phillip angry. Mere days later, Rick was shocked to learn that not only had his best friend kidnapped his own children, but Jude as well. Soon after, Rick tracked down Phillip and after trying to gain Phillip's trust, tried to sedate him. However, Phillip got the upper hand and turned the tables by sedating Rick. Days later, Phillip arranged for Rick to meet him at Company with a promise that he'd tell him where Jude was. At the prearranged time, Rick arrived to find not only several others that Phillip asked to me, but Phillip lying on the floor dead of a gunshot wound. That night, despite the efforts of one of the doctors at Cedars, Phillip passed away. In the wake of Phillip's death, Rick and Beth bonded over their loss of their beloved friend. However, Rick and Mel started to become estranged since she couldn't help Rick mourn the death of a man she felt was despicable. Their gulf only widened, when Mel turned down Rick's offer to sail around the world together since Rick wanted to live life to the fullest.
In 2005, Rick was rocked by the revelation that Harley could be Phillip’s killer. Later, Rick would caught Beth spying on Harley. After admitting that she was simply trying to understand Harley's motive, a shaken Beth impulsively kissed Rick. Although they both pulled away, the kiss was witnessed by Mel. Though she later, gave Rick the opportunity to come clean about what happened, he didn’t. That same day, when Beth showed up, Mel confronted them both. When Beth apologized and left. Rick tried to explain that he didn’t tell Mel because he was hoping it would just be forgotten. Later, Mel would see Rick comforting Beth, and suspecting that she was losing her husband informed him that she wouldn't let him go without a fight.
After her declaration, the Bauer marriage would become more secure. Not long after, Harley was found guilty of Phillip's murder and asked her father to take care of all her kids. Although Buzz panicked and tried to point out to Rick that he was a better choice, Rick trusted in Buzz's abilities. Finally, seeing how upset Buzz was, Rick offered to let him and the rest of the Coopers (who'd been thrown out of Company) move into the Bauer house. Later, Rick, among others, were summoned to company where he heard the real killer confess to Phillip--it was Alan! However, shortly after his arrest, Alan made an amazing statement--he claimed that he faked Phillip's death. Although Rick, and everyone else, balked at this, Harley thought that perhaps Alan was telling the truth and decided to investigate. To that end, she and Mallet went to Phillip's grave to exhume the body but were attacked. When Rick was called to the scene to help an injured Mallet, he was not pleased to know they were disturbing his best friend's tomb. Soon after, Rick was forced to do the exhumation himself when Gus, to finally put Harley's mind at ease, secretly got Alan to sign a release. Although Rick informed everyone that he'd seen Phillip in the grave, it turned out he was lying.
Having received calls from a very much alive Phillip, Rick promised to help his troubled friend keep his secret as long as he needed. However, Mallet knew this to be false since he'd seen Phillip. Mallet confronted Rick alone and when Rick convinced him that Phillip was no longer a threat, Mallet agreed to keep quiet for Harley’s sake. Afterwards Alan, who was in a mental hospital, lashed out at Rick for keeping Phillip dead with the false exhumation report. But, Rick played dumb and angered Alan when he refused to confirm that Phillip was alive. Rick was then astounded to learn that Beth intended to marry Alan! Although he tried to convince her that Alan was using her and would ultimately hurt her, Beth was convinced that marrying Alan would ensure her children's financial future. That same year, Rick helped Michelle deal with a bout of amnesia and was on hand to see her marry Danny, whom Rick came to approve of, again.
2006 began as a quiet year for Rick, who concentrated mostly on his work. The spring of that year, Rick was on hand when Beth collapsed at Company and treated her. Though a feverish Beth insisted on leaving, Rick insisted she was too ill. Later he shocked her by revealing her diagnosis--she was pregnant! Later, Rick warned Alan to be good to Beth. Then in April, an event would occur that would lead Rick's world to fall apart--Ross's was involved in a plane crash. Since no bodies were recovered, the FAA ruled there were no survivors. Unbeknownst the Rick, the police found evidence that the crash may not have been an accident but sabotage. Alan-Michael became the prime suspect since Ross had several meetings scheduled with him. However, Rick had no way of knowing this, and one day innocently went to a San Gabriel resort. Also at the resort were Harley, Dinah, Mallet, Blake and Jeffrey-- there to investigate Ross's death. (also present were Alan and Beth who were renewing their vows) By now the group already had the answer regarding Ross's death: Phillip was alive (as Alan stated over a year prior) and hiding out. Ross must have found out hired a PI to locate him in the hopes of convincing him to return home. However, Phillip didn't want to be found and had someone pay a mechanic to sabotage Ross's plane. The revelation that Alan lied to her (about Phillip being dead) so she'd marry him, was too much for Beth and she collapsed. Suddenly Beth remembered that Rick told her Phillip was in the coffin the previous year.
As Beth became hysterical, Rick tried to tell her that he thought Phillip was dead too, at first and actually relieved that Phillip was not around to hurt his son anymore. He grieved just like she did. Then Phillip returned on the day of Harley's wedding, Rick explained that Phillip was manic and unstable and needed to stay away. He begged Rick to lie and say he was the one in the casket and not to tell anyone else. And if Rick did that, Phillip would stay away from his son. All Rick wanted to do was keep Phillip away from his son. By the time Rick returned to the living area the rest of the group found out the name of the man who paid the mechanic--Rick. Confronted, Rick broke down and confessed that it was a tragic mistake; the plane was never supposed to take off. Ross was supposed to switch planes--not insist on taking his private plane.
The stress of the situation was too much for Beth and she had to be rushed to the hospital (where she lost the baby). There Mel overheard Alan and Rick talking and found out the truth. Disgusted that Rick put Phillip ahead of everyone else, Mel told him she didn't know if she could forgive him and if he could forgive himself, he was not the man she married. She then ordered him out of the house. Days later, Rick tried to get forgiveness from Mel and Beth but both women refused. That same day, Charles Grant--called by Beth--arrived and fired Rick. Rick tried to plead for his job back, since he was having family problems, but Charles was adamant--Rick had to be out by the end of the day. Later, Mel informed Rick that since a teenaged Leah was coming home for the summer, he could stay at the house until she left again. As Rick dealt with his crumbling marriage, Harley’s husband, Gus, was battling a pill addiction so Harley left with the kids for Europe. Weeks later, Rick went to the house Gus was building for Harley to see him. When he got there, he heard a large commotion and saw an angry Gus having a fit and ranting about having lost something. Unnerved, Rick went off unnoticed. Later that day, Rick saw Harley on the phone at Company. Overhearing her about to talk to Gus, Rick quickly hung up the phone and told Harley what he’d seen. Harley didn’t believe it though; she’d done some investigating and the old Gus was back. Rick didn’t believe it; he maintained that Gus still had a serious drug habit and was a danger. When Harley again tried to deny it, he accused her of being an enabler and threatened to go to court to get custody of Jude if she went back to Gus. Shocked, Harley told Rick to try because she would win. However, weeks later he had a change of heart and told Harley that Jude could stay with her after all.
Not long after, Rick began carrying on an affair with a surprising person—Beth! Apparently, after the Bauer Barbecue the two former friends ended up hooking up and commiserated over their bad marriages. After talking and drinking for hours, the two fell in to bed and began seeking each other out for comfort. Though Rick tried to end the affair, when Rick found himself again on the outs with Mel, he sought comfort from Beth. Meanwhile, Rick was becoming increasingly worried that Mel would find out about the affair. Unfortunately for Rick that would happen when Jonathan Randall snapped photos of Rick and Beth together and in a pique of anger told everyone about the affair. Mel immediately threw Rick out, rebuffed all of Rick's attempts for them to reconnect and finally asked for a divorce. When Rick begged her to reconsider, she stated that she would think about it.
In 2007, Rick finally realized that things with Mel were over and decided to stop trying. He went to a newly divorced Beth and tried to convince her to be with him. However, Beth still clung to life with Alan, who was now in a coma from a gunshot wound. In addition, she was pregnant with Alan’s baby. Later, Rick asked Mel for a divorce because they couldn’t just stay in limbo. After telling him that she forgave him for everything, Mel agreed and embraced him in friendship. Afterwards, Rick went to Beth and told her he wanted a life with her and offered to raise her child. In response, Beth promptly seduced Rick. Meanwhile, Gus and Harley discovered that Rick had been keeping Alan under sedation and Alan’s new wife, Doris, took Rick off Alan’s case. In the meantime, Alan was given another dose of the drug and finally woke up. Soon after Alan returned home, Rick met with Beth and reminded her that she promised they could be together if he left Mel. Later, Cassie informed Rick that Beth had lied about being pregnant before but she was pregnant now. Cassie warned Rick that Alan would try to take this baby away and raise it as his own. Realizing that Beth’s numerous seductions throughout the last few weeks were attempts to get pregnant and pass the baby off as Alan’s, Rick confronted Beth who was with Alan. Rick proceeded to tell Alan the tawdry details of his affair with Beth while he was in a coma and denounced Beth as a shell of the woman he used to know.
Afterwards, Beth went to Rick who not only announced that their friendship was over, but he was suing for custody of their child. Later, Beth suffered a mild fall after an altercation with Cassie. Because of the fall, an amnio test needed to be done. Rick found out and demanded that a DNA test be done as well. Beth tried to convince him that Alan was the father. However, Rick didn’t believe it and questioned whether she wanted Alan raising her child. Beth again began giving her standard reply about the child having a better life with the Spaulding wealth but Rick refused to listen to that excuse. Weeks later, a DNA test showed that Rick was indeed the father. Though he had denounced Beth, Rick found himself bonding with her as she helped him plan the Bauer BBQ. Though the BBQ was almost sidelined due a gas leak in the neighborhood, Rick decided to have it downtown on Main Street. The day of the barbecue, Rick shocked everyone by declaring his love for Beth and asking her to marry him on the spot! To everyone’s surprise, a touched Beth agreed. Days later, Rick was shocked when Josh informed him that the paternity test had been tampered with: Alan was the father of Beth’s baby. Though Josh expected Rick to tell Beth the truth, Rick decided to keep this revelation to himself. Later, a guilty Rick prepared to tell Beth the truth but was interrupted by Cassie who convinced him to keep quiet. As the weeks went by, Rick’s guilt got to him, as did his doubts about whether Beth really loved him.
In 2008, Rick and Beth were shocked to learn that Lizzie’s baby, Sarah, was alive. Apparently, Jonathan faked their deaths in order to protect the baby from Alan. Though Beth was appalled that Jonathan kept Sarah from Lizzie for a year, Rick defended his actions. Days later, Beth told Rick that she needed to go to Chicago to spend time with some friends. In reality, she went to San Gabriel to distract Alan from returning to town so Lizzie and Jonathan could sneak out with Sarah. Somehow Rick learned that Beth wasn’t in Chicago and believing that Alan had her kidnapped raced to the island where he was promptly arrested. After being released, Rick went to the villa where he discovered that Beth had given birth to a baby girl. Rick took Beth and the baby home and reminded Beth of the history that they shared. Rick wanted to name the child after his grandmother. Since Beth wasn’t fond of the name Bertha she settled on a compromise and named her Bernadette. Unfortunately things came crashing down out Bernadette’s christening when a tug of war between Jonathan and Alan over Sarah ultimately led to Alan holding a gun on Jon right there in the church. In order to save her son, Reva blurted out that Bernadette was Alan’s child! When Alan demanded that Cassie, the godmother, hand over the baby and Rick intervened and Beth realized that Rick knew about this the entire time. Alan implored Beth to do the right thing and against Cassie and Rick’s objections, she presented the baby to Alan but made it clear to him and Rick that she hadn’t decided what she was going to do.
Rick tried to justify his actions but Beth only accused him of being just like Alan. Rick insisted to Beth that DNA didn’t matter because where the baby was concerned; it was their baby. Soon after, Beth upset Rick by stating that she was thinking of changing the baby’s name. Beth made it perfectly clear that what happened with the baby would be entirely her decision. Then to prevent Rick from getting into trouble, Beth suggested that he lie and tell the court that Josh threatened him into lying about the baby’s paternity. Though Rick was reluctant, Beth argued that it was the only way. Meanwhile, thanks to Alan, Rick was thrown in jail overnight for his part in the baby fiasco. As Rick languished in jail, Beth decided to rename the baby Peyton Alexandra Raines. The next day, Beth learned where Rick had disappeared to and went to the station as Rick was bailed out. Though Rick assumed Beth had bailed him out, they were both shocked when the signature on the form revealed that it was Phillip.In the meantime, Alan had fallen on hard times when a tax audit left him penniless. Finally, Rick offered to give Alan a loan to underwrite a new business venture, in exchange for Alan walking away from Peyton. Alan refused and then told Beth about Rick’s bribery attempt. Shocked, Beth lashed out at Rick for trying to buy Peyton, and told him to stop acting like Alan. As the weeks went by, Beth remained conflicted about whether she’d stay with Rick or return to Alan. Terrified of losing Peyton, when Beth arranged for Rick to spend some time alone with her, Rick kidnapped Peyton with the intention of taking the girl to California. However, when he couldn’t calm the crying baby, he thought better of it and returned Peyton to Beth, confessing to Beth what he almost intended on doing. Recognizing that he was becoming like Alan, Rick relented and told Beth that he wouldn’t chase after her.
Rick told Beth that when July 4th rolled around, he hoped that she would want to share it with him. By the time Independence Day came around, Rick saw the writing on the wall and decided not to hold the traditional Bauer Barbecue. When Rick told Ed the news over the phone, Ed tried to guilt Rick into holding it but depressed Rick felt that there was no point since he was the only Bauer left in town. Afterwards, Rick met with Beth and realized that she made her choice—she was going back to Alan. Later, Rick happened by Josh and Cassie's place and informed them that he decided to cancel the barbecue since he was not up to "wearing the hat." After Rick left, Cassie had an idea. Instead of canceling, they should host the barbecue. When Beth heard the news, she went to Rick's to convince him that he had to host the barbecue. When Rick argued that it did not matter where the barbecue was, Beth agreed but argued that it did matter what it was and it was the Bauers'. Beth argued that the Bauer Barbecue was an intangible part of his entire family and that the tradition was important and meant a lot to people. After Beth's talk, Rick arrived at Josh and Cassie's and agreed to take over the grill and wear the grilling hat. That day, Beth asked Rick if she lost her best friend, but Rick had no real answer. Afterwards, Rick concentrated on medical matters. He treated Alan who was suffering from a blood clot and Olivia when her body seemed to be rejecting her heart. When Olivia continued to refer to it as "Gus's" heart, Rick got upset and insisted that it was hers--not Gus's. He also told her that to honor Gus, she had to stop feeling guilty and move on with her life. Later, Olivia was fitted with a pacemaker. Rick also was on hand to treat Lizzie after she'd been kidnapped and her rescuer, Bill, after he slipped into a coma.
In 2009, Bill went to Rick for information on Phillip’s whereabouts since he believed that Lizzie needed her father. Though Rick told Bill that locating Phillip was a bad idea, he talked it over with Beth and apparently gave Bill an address. Unfortunately, that did not pan out. Meanwhile, Rick was astonished when Beth revealed that she had been having an affair with the much younger Coop Bradshaw. Unfortunately, Alan learned of the affair and forced Beth to agree to marry him by threatening Coop’s life. Alan then shocked Rick by asking him to be his best man at the impromptu wedding. Though he hated Alan, agreed since he hoped he would be able to convince Beth to leave Alan at the altar. Everyone was shocked when none other than Phillip walked in on the ceremony. Upon learning that Coop had been in a horrible accident, Beth rushed out without marrying Alan.
Later, Phillip went to Rick who filled Phillip in on what he missed while he was away. Though Rick had been in contact with Phillip, it was obvious that he left out several details—such as the fact that Rick had been married to Beth. Though Phillip wanted to reestablish ties with his children, a wary Rick wasn’t sure if that was possible. Soon after, Alan asked Rick if Phillip was mentally sound but Rick could not give say for certain. Though Beth believed that Phillip had changed and agreed to help him face charges for kidnapping, Rick still thought Phillip could be dangerous. However, weeks later, after he, Phillip, Beth and a visiting Mindy attended their high school reunion, Rick softened and let down his guard. He even testified on Phillip’s behalf at his criminal hearing. Several weeks later, Alan, who continually asked Rick about Phillip’s mental state, had Phillip committed to Ravenwood to have him evaluated. Believing that Phillip was sane, Rick helped him get out of the hospital so that he could prevent Alan from interfering in Lizzie’s romantic vacation. That summer, Rick was happy when Michelle and her family paid a visit during the Bauer Barbecue. Weeks later, Ed arrived for a visit but told Rick that he’d be returning periodically to take care of a patient. Though happy to have his father back, Rick wished that it was permanent. Several weeks later, Rick learned that Ed’s patient was Phillip who was suffering with a terminal illness. Fortunately, thanks to an experimental procedure, Ed was able to save Phillip’s life. Not long after, Rick was happy to learn that not only were Michelle and her family moving back to town, so was Mindy.
By the following year, Phillip and Beth were happily married and toasted Rick on the eve of his wedding to Mindy.