Earth Angels

Free Earth Angels by Gerald Petievich

Book: Earth Angels by Gerald Petievich Read Free Book Online
Authors: Gerald Petievich
You have one witness and a bunch of nebulous bullshit for evidence."
    "I guess that means you're not going to file the murder charges."
    "You guessed it."
    "What should I tell my captain, that the DA said the case was a cliffhanger and we had to let a shooter go?"
    "I don't care what you tell him."
    "May I ask you a question?" Stepanovich said.
    "Um hm."
    "If your nine year old daughter had been murdered and an eyewitness identified the killer, would you be satisfied with the case not being prosecuted because the DA thought the case didn't look like a sure winner?"
    "It's not my daughter, and as far as I'm concerned, this is just another ghetto murder one of six or seven I've reviewed this evening. There's not enough evidence to prosecute and that's that." Weber held out the reports and Stepanovich and Arredondo stood up to leave.
    "Try reinterviewing the witnesses," Weber said as they walked out.
    From the district attorney's office Stepanovich drove straight down Fourth Street to a soot covered industrial area near the L.A. River. Parking the car in a truck space in front of a cardboard container factory, he and Arredondo walked across the wide street to the Rumor Control Bar, an establishment identified only by the letters "R.C." spray painted above the door. Inside, the dark bar was filled with male cops wearing loose fitting shirts to cover off duty iron. There was only one female in the place: Brenda Last Name-Unknown. Barefoot, the beefy, ponytailed young woman was wearing tennis shorts and a halter-top made of two large seashells cupping her breasts which was tied in back with a thick leather thong. She was perched on a stool near the middle of the bar: a seat she'd earned, as Sullivan the bartender often remarked, by blowing any and every swinging dick in the division without regard to race, creed, or rank. Stepanovich knew from the grapevine this included sucking off a platoon of motorcycle cops after the traffic division steak fry, the entire Wilshire Division morning watch, a group of narco detectives at an on duty swim party, and every badge carrying male who attended last year's robbery homicide Christmas party. Rather than being simply tolerated like other camp followers, the veteran fellatrix was a distinct source of pride to the entire division because of her consistent refusal to go down on sheriff's deputies, firemen, and officers from other police departments.
    As Stepanovich and Arredondo approached the bar and ordered beers, Brenda waved at Arredondo.
    Sullivan, a retired police officer with puffy eyes and habitually unruly hair that made him look as if he had just awakened with a hangover, set beer bottles on the bar. He picked a cigarette from a pack and lit it with a silver LAPD lighter. "I hear you two have been assigned to the CRASH special unit."
    Stepanovich nodded as he set money on the bar.
    "A Bob Harger brainstorm, right?"
    Picking up the money, Sullivan used a soiled rag to wipe the bar. "I knew Harger when he first came on the Department. We worked together at Central Division."
    Arredondo swigged his beer. "What do you think of him?"
    Sullivan sucked on his cigarette and gritted his teeth, inhaling smoke deep into his lungs. He turned his palm and looked at the cigarette. "First day I met him I could tell he'd make rank," he said, holding the smoke inside.
    C.R. Black whistled shrilly from the other end of the bar. "Hey, Sullivan, you baggy eyed creep! Bring some beer down here!" The bar crowd laughed.
    "You're going to be working with him too, right?" Sullivan said, reaching into the cooler for a bottle of beer.
    "How do you know?"
    "Black wangles his way into any unit where he can earn overtime pay," Sullivan said. With a practiced motion he popped the cap and handed him the bottle.
    Stepanovich and Arredondo joined Black and Fordyce at a table in the corner and Stepanovich explained what had happened at the district attorney's office. Fordyce shook his head as if he'd been

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