Cutting Room Excerpts #3
Yet another in our series of chapters that didn't make THE NIGHT POLICE final cut. This may have been round filed, but like all the rest, it's a true account fictionalized,
only names and places have been changed to protect identities. Sometimes these excerpts aren't "publish-ready" as they were drafts, but you'll get the drift.
Contempt of Cop
Being a dope cop isn’t always door and ass-kicking, there’s down time. Granted, most of that takes place in bars like the Hickory Room, Fat Buddy’s BBQ & Tap Room, Jornady’s, or maybe even Took’s. Down time in the office was just a different place to have fun.
In our case, our undercover office was merely one of many commercial units, supporting aircraft services and plunked down almost on the runway at Bristol City’s Reagan Jetport. Private aircraft and maintenance equipment were our neighbors. Ray Charles routinely parked his plane literally 75 feet from our front windows. There’s a whole story behind Ray, and most narcs could see it without a formal briefing. In fact, we had a stuffed duck in the office, it had no eyes…you know it was named Ray Charles.
Exterior, concrete stairs lead to a battered glass door, with a simple B&B Services stenciled in black on the front. Shitty commercial grade carpet in industrial gray that had been skinned by years of shuffling (and occasionally dancing) narcs opened into a large office space our secretary’s called home away from home. Olive drab, metal desks that were old twenty years ago, a few shitty potted plants and tilting stacks of files bejeweled our, to be kind, suite of offices.
Down the hall were more groups of offices, each shared by two or three narcs from several agencies, all assigned the Allen County Narcotics Bureau (soon to become a State Department of Justice task force, moniker’d “Allied Narco-Enforcement Team or ANT).
Each office reflected the personalities and the fairly unruly, undercover lives of the cops assigned. In ours, there were the usual piles of files, mostly haphazardly tossed, battered desks buried in paper, trash cans mostly overflowing. There were some pinup pics from biker mags like Easy Rider. Mug shots, wanted posters, a banner from a past choir practice that read “In my defense, I was left unsupervised”. A picture of one of our main crooks that was almost dissolved from incessant dart targeting. Oh, and about seventy five pencils that had been catapulted into the ceiling tiles, where they remained as symbols of our combined athletic abilities. It wasn’t of Architectural Digest, but it was home.
Country western music came on with the lights in our office. We listened to WFAT 94 1/2 FM out of Iowa and mostly tunes in the vein of JJ Cale’s, Crazy Momma, Commander Cody’s, Seeds and Stems or one of our favorites, My Head Hurts, My Feet Stink and I Don’t Love Jesus by Jimmy Buffett. We were into the classics.
If you took a snapshot in time, you’d see a trio of scruffy, big haired, rawboned narcs, each with their cowboys boots crowning their desktops and all of them gracefully leaning back in a state of skillful repose. We didn’t even know how to whine about our ergonomic requirements back then, we had more important things to do like reading culturally significant articles reported in High Times or Penthouse Forum. The aroma of Skoal and stale Schaefer’s merged with the smell of a right moldy carpet to create a perfect olfactory funk that could only fit here. Solemnity was not to be found in the offices of Peachin, Dodt, Kramden and Associates.
The three of us did have hair in common. Big hair, shoulder length hair, long flowing curls, facial hair by the pound and if I remember correctly, one of us has back-hair that would make an angora rabbit covetous.
Another thing we had in common was that we loved being cops, most especially being narcs! And frankly, we loved each other the way men who count on each other for survival do. We wouldn’t have hesitated to sacrifice for each other. In these respects we were much like the inhabitants of the other offices at B&B Services.
We did differentiate ourselves; we knew in our hearts we were the best fucking narcs in town, possibly in the universe. We also believed we were funnier, got way more pussy and kicked more ass than the others. We were flush with testosterone and attitude. It might not have all been true, but most of it was. And without that confidence, I guarran-fuckin-tee you we’d’ve been less effective, we’d certainly have fewer stories to tell. Damn, it was a great time to be alive!
Did I sidetrack myself? I do that. Any way, we’re kicking back in the office, no search warrants today, no surveillances scheduled and almost amazingly none of the three of us had a buy slated for the day. Very occasionally, when all the stars align and you had a slow day, we’d often go serve some of the outstanding arrest warrants that somehow always stacked up. That in itself was fun, kicking doors and dragging assholes off to the calaboose. You didn’t take much paper and occasionally you’d get a new case or roll a snitch for your efforts. But for whatever reason, that day we chose to look at the habitually untapped snitch list.
In our office, the snitch list was most routinely (but not always) authored by the secretaries who, amongst many other things, answered our public telephones. More on them later. They’d take a lot of calls, mostly anonymous, from people who had a bone to pick with a wife, husband, boyfriend, boss, even a minister a time or two, who somehow wronged them. A few were just good old fashioned, observant, American citizens who wanted to report something suspicious and possibly nefarious. There were plenty of tips that were spurred on by vendetta. They worked equally well. What most of them had in common was some scuttlebutt, gossip or perhaps a morsel of real information they wanted to give us because some doper was dealing to their girlfriend, or had stolen their eight ball of crank or some other slight. Mostly they didn’t want to leave a name because they were either afraid of getting killed or just simply didn’t want to get involved for a whole host of reasons. What they wanted was to wreak some kind of misery on some cocksucker that was annoying the piss outta them at that precise moment in time.
This day, we pulled out the snitch list and were reading aloud through page after page of suspicions, accusations, and assorted claims of wrongdoing. At about page eleven, Kramden pointed out a note that suggested some dude at an apartment in the 588 Borough was dealing coke out his front door and he didn’t seem to be very discreet. It didn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out how to make a case from that. Most of us learned some of the ropes just that way. And we just happened to have a brand new agent in the office that had just been promoted up from triple A and needed some game time in the “bigs”.
Kelley Tipton, was a petite, blonde, drop dead babe, K-9 cop from Bristols City’s neighbor to the north, Carthage. She had a reputation as a pistol and was ‘sposed to be a pretty damn good cop. We’d worked a case or two with her and she’d held her own. Not just during a couple of hot search warrants, but with her new crew. What she needed was some seasoning and here was an ideal way to provide it.
When I asked Kelley, if she “wanted to cold drop some fuck for an eighth of coke” her response was “how ‘bout now!” Liking the sound of that, Sean, Kramden, Kelley and I gathered in the squalor of our office and with The Sir Douglas Quartet smoothing out Stoned Faces Don’t Lie, we hatched our plot.
Our plan was to drive out to this apartment and send Kelley to the door. Her scam was to be that she’d heard from this dude at Vidal’s (a storied joint just around the corner from the target shit head’s apartment), that this guy could hook her up with some coke and we’d see how it played out. We figured if he was as fucking stupid as it appeared he was, a hot blonde, sweetening him out of some product wouldn’t be too far of a stretch.
His apartment, an end unit, was a toxic dump on the second floor of a 48 unit, concrete block, apartment complex. There was, however, a perfect view for us from the street. A pair of binoculars and if you could read lips, you’d be ringside.
Kelley (who would, within a few weeks, gain the aka Snake), armed with a flash of cash, a coveted glibness and her cut down 9mm headed for the door. The balance of her colleagues supporting the deal this day concurred that she might be an effective narc eventually, but the skin-tight jeans on her thoroughbred ass were mandatory to pass her narco probationary period.
Our team took up positions where at least two of us had eyes on her and the rest were close enough to be there if needed, in seconds. We’d prearranged, she’d try to do the deal at the door if at all possible (remember, all the intel we had indicated this guy was a moron and she was a blonde). If she had to go inside, she needed to be near the big dining-room window so if things turned to shit, she could throw a chair or whatever out the window and we’d surmise it was time to beat this fucker half to death.
Kelley wasn’t timid taking the stairs two at a time. Knocked. Nothing. Again. Nothing. She wasn’t giving up and as she was knocking for the third time, the door squeaked open about two inches. Though we couldn’t hear her we could see Kelley presumably charming this mope.
Pretty soon the door opened about a foot and there he was, a vision of manhood and gentility. Kevin Foel, potbellied and unshaven, was dressed in a dirty robe hanging open and wearing a wife beater and boxers. His bed-head indicated he’d probably just woken. He completed this cosmopolitan look by standing on his robe belt in a pair of woman’s fuzzy fucking slippers likely provided by those fine folks at KMart.
It only took a few seconds to see that the conversation wasn’t going in the direction we’d hoped. You could see Kelley convincing, coaxing, persuading Mr. Foel. His head was moving side to side in the wrong direction. About a minute in he’d escalated to aggressive gestures and vigorously, repeatedly pointing down the stairway. The prick turned and slammed the door in her face. Fuckin’ rude! The definitive illustration of contempt of cop!
Kelley paused there at the top of the stairs, hands on her hips. I’ll be damned if she didn’t knock on the door again, much to Foel’s obvious annoyance. Unfortunately it had the same result, and she’d now had the door slammed in her face twice in about thirty seconds. Before she headed down, she walked to the side of the window and concealing herself, we could see her trying to get a look inside. Good instincts.
At the bottom of the steps, she headed around the corner to where Randy and I had set up. Kelley wasn’t disappointed, she wasn’t scared, but she was fucking pissed. I do know she cut loose with a veritable cornucopia of provocative vocabulary, deployed like chaff from a fighter jet. We were all on board with her emotions and I recall one of her new co-workers recommending she “twist his head off and shit in his neck”.
We all piled into our cars and we drove off, thinking of Plan B. It took us about ten blocks to hatch the next conspiracy. We got on the radio and got two teams to make u-turns from whatever bar they were headed for and we all converged on The Centennial, a park mid-city.
The three cars all pulled together, we listened while Kelley filled everyone in on Foel’s poor manners and his insistence that he didn’t know what she was fucking talking about. She was not overly effusive in her praise for his tidiness, nor did she seem to appreciate his apparently very overripe halitosis.
She told us she was pretty sure the apartment was vacant except for Foel. She added that there appeared to be a kitchen, dining, living room combo with bedrooms in the back, all with the lights out. She said, from what she could see, it was as to be expected, a shit hole.
Kelley said she thought the intel on the snitch list was probably accurate. Said she couldn’t prove it, she just felt it. One of us, and I can’t remember who, told Kelley he had something he’d like her to feel. While the rest of us were generally in agreement, we had the good sense to just let it go. Anyway, Kelley was entitled to that judgement, she’d been on the job for eight or nine years at his time, even though she was a rookie narcotics detective.
We decided I’d go to a phone booth and call this asshole. The other teams including Kelley would go back and set up once again on the apartment. About ten minutes later, I found a phone booth that was actually working. The radio told me the teams were in place.
I called Foel, who added to his urbane and sophisticated persona by answering “what the fuck do you want?”. I knew I was really going to like arresting this mutt, if all went well. I said, “Kevin Foel?” Again, “What the fuck to you want?” I said, “Kevin, you don’t know who I am and you don’t need to, but today’s your lucky fuckin’ day. I work at the Court Clerk’s Office. I fucking hate these cop cocksuckers, so I’m calling to tell you that a couple narcs were in here filing a search warrant for your apartment. It’s your business dude, but if I were you, I’d get my shit and get out before they show”. I hung up, not waiting for a response. I radioed to the teams, told them the call was in and I was en route.
Minutes later and just as I pulled to the curb down the street from the apartment, here comes that fat fuck Foel motoring down the stairs. And lo-and-behold this dip shit is carrying a shoe box like he’s one of the three wise men delivering frankincense and myrrh to the baby Jesus.
As he hits the foot of the stairs, who steps out from behind the building but the diminutive blonde with that cut down nine in her hand. She walks up behind him, screws her pistol in his ear, about up to the trigger guard and very quietly hisses to him, “put that box gently on the ground…motherfucker!” With an emphasis on motherfucker. Mr. Foel could not comply immediately. He was busy wetting himself.
Later on at the Bijou, we joked about Foel, pissing his pants and the victim blue suit that had to transport him. I did hear more commentary about Kelley’s fine ass and references to a secondary line of business for her. She ignored us for the most part.
Oh yeah, Foel’s shoe box contained forty eight, eight balls of coke, some packaging materials (scales, bindles, grinders) and Mikey C’s mother fucking business card. And he’s a whole ‘nuther story.
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