Monday, December 29, 2003


So states the unofficial motto of the Texas Rangers � one of the oldest law enforcement services in the country.

The Texas Rangers� 180-year heritage of service dates back to 1823, when colonizer Stephen F. Austin called for men to "Range" the frontier and guard against hostile Indians.

The modern Texas Rangers are an investigative division of the Texas Department of Public Safety. Its members are investigators who have been selected from the rfanks of the Department of Public Safety Highway Patrol Officers. A Texas Ranger has the official rank of at least a Sergeant.
The 116 Rangers authorized by the Texas Legislature are posted across Texas in six companies. Spreading the 116 Rangers throughout the state, it is easy to see that they are spread even thinner than an NYPD Detective! The role of the Texas Ranger is to assist and act as a support to local law enforcement, under defined legislative statutes.

Headquartered in Waco, they are posted to six Ranger Companies throughout Texas, as well as having an Unsolved Crimes Investigative Team is located in San Antonio.

Modern Rangers have the benefit of state-of-the-art weaponry and other equipment. Each Ranger is furnished an automatic, 12 gauge shotgun and Ruger Mini-14 semi-automatic rifle. He or she also has a crime scene kit with materials for taking fingerprints and making plaster casts of tracks and tool marks along with additional evidence-gathering necessities.

High-powered sniper rifles, night vision scopes, tear gas guns and grenades and gas masks are available for each Ranger company. Black lights, used for detecting fluid traces on clothing and other items, also are available at the company level. Sophisticated electronic surveillance equipment is at the disposal of the Rangers as well.

Today's Rangers travel by car, airplane or helicopter and occasionally by horse. Rangers are not issued uniforms; they dress as they need to. A Ranger in Dallas might wear a suit and tie while a Ranger assigned to a rural area would likely choose Western wear. Rangers are still expected to wear western boots and have their badges pinned to their shirts.

These Rangers are supervised by a Senior Captain, Captain, Assistant Commander, six field captains and seven lieutenants. The force is organized into six companies, "A" through "F," and a Headquarters office in Austin. A captain, lieutenant and from one to three Rangers are located at each of the five DPS Regional Headquarters. Company F is stationed at the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum in Waco -- the official state hall of fame and repository for the Texas Rangers.

Other Rangers are stationed in various towns and cities in the state, each Ranger having responsibility for a minimum of two to three counties, some with even larger areas.

The often cited "One Riot, One Ranger" appears to be based on several statements attributed to Ranger Captain McDonald by Albert Bigelow Paine in his classic book, Captain Bill McDonald: Texas Ranger. When sent to Dallas to prevent a scheduled prize-fight, McDonald supposedly was greeted at the train station by the city's anxious mayor, who asked: "Where are the others?" To that, McDonald is said to have replied, "Hell! ain't I enough? There's only one prize-fight!"

And on the title page of Paine's 1909 book on McDonald are 19 words labeled as Captain McDonald's creed: "No man in the wrong can stand up against a fellow that's in the right and keeps on a-comin."

Those words have evolved into the Ranger creed.


On December 28, 1974, PO Kenneth Mahon #28418, 41 Pct, was killed in the line of duty effecting an arrest for robbery.

Police Officer Kenneth Mahon, 29, was baptized, confirmed, married and made his First Communion in St.Gabriel�s Church in East Elmhurst, New York.

On December 31, 1974, some 5,000 police officers saw Officer Mahon buried from that same church after being gunned down in the early morning hours of December 28, 1974 in one of life�s bitter ironies. The plainclothesman was killed allegedly by a man whom Officer Mahon was not even pursuing. He was looking for a rape and robbery suspect.

Mahon and his partner, Michael Black, went to the building looking for two of the four gunmen who held up a novelty store at 1218 Southern Blvd at 7 pm on December 27. Five persons were robbed of $300 in cash and jewelry and a young woman in the store was raped. After the holdup, two uniformed police officers picked up a 19 year old and a 16 year old as suspects in the robbery. Both were charged with robbery, burglary and rape. Police said the two suspects gave the name and addresses of two others they said were involved in the holdup. Mahon and Black went to the Southern Boulevard address looking for the two others.

Officer Mahon and his partner, Detective Black, reportedly spotted Navedo in the courtyard of the seven-building complex and tried to stop him for questioning. He reportedly ran into a building and the two cops pursued. From a flight of stairs, the man turned and allegedly fired four shots. Officer Mahon was hit in the left hip, left leg and chest. He died at Lincoln Hospital on the operating table at about 1:20 am. He was the fourth police officer to die in the line of duty in 1974. Officer Mahon lived in College Point Queens at the time of his death and was survived by his wife, a three year old daughter, mother, father and sister.

Police Officer Mahon joined the police force in 1968 after serving in the Army in Vietnam. Officer Mahon had been decorated by the department 36 times, including 18 excellent police citations, 10 meritorious service citations and five departmental commendations. At the time of his murder, he had been with the anticrime unit for three years. He made over 259 arrests while working with anticrime and disarmed at least 50 people. His supervisor at the time in charge of the 41st Precinct�s anticrime unit, commented at the time of his death that �He was the best I had�.

Officer Mahon was due to be promoted to detective � and such an action would have meant a transfer, but the budget crisis had delayed the promotion.

Four hours after Officer Mahon was killed in the South Bronx tenement, police arrested a 31 year old five-time loser. The murder suspect, David Navedo of the Bronx, was wrestled into custody by two cops on the roof at the murder scene at 500 Southern Blvd, near 149th street at about 5 am. He was arrested by Police Officers Kevin Henry and Gonsolvo Torres of the Alexander Avenue station.


In the last posting to this site, mention was made of the Brooklyn-S.I. 10-13 Association, and the assistance they are seeking in ensuring that the killers of these two officers never see the outside of their prison cells.

The two men convicted of murdering Police Officers Joseph Piagentini and Waverly Jones will be eligible for parole in 2004 - Herman Bell (DIN#79C0262) in February and Anthony Bottom (DIN#77A4283) in July (his second time). Both of these men were justly tried and convicted of killing the two 32nd Precinct New York City patrolmen.

Piagentini and Jones were ambushed and assassinated, shot multiple times in the back as they walked back to their patrol car after answering a call of a woman in distress at the Colonial Park Apartments in Harlem on the 21st of May, 1971.

The assassins who carried out this attack, members of the Black Liberation Army, showed a completely callous and gross disregard for the value of human life. Herman Bell and Anthony Bottom, by their deeds and by their unrepentant disposition, have proven themselves unworthy of and unfit for free life. They robbed two wives of their husbands, and five children of their fathers, and they deserve to live no life other than a life behind bars.
Joseph Piagentini, a 28-year-old Caucasian NYPD Police Officer, and Waverly Jones, a 33-year-old African American NYPD Police Officer, were doing their best to promote a healthy image of racial equality and partnership by policing Harlem together in 1971. Herman Bell and Anthony Bottom, through their militant, violent, and hateful act, did their best to destroy everything that Piagentini and Jones were working for.

Your assistance is requested in sending a letter to Governor Pataki and to the Parole Board of New York State urging that these two killers remain behind bars. Please help!


Thanks to Dan Mackey, retired NYPD Detective (also former Transit PD) and currently working for the Federal government�s Homeland Security Department for the following information. He would like to pass on some of these interesting and useful �gumshoe� sites.

Best Pretexts From PIs Around the Country

Legal and Illegal Pretexts

Employment Pretexts

Avenues Of Approach To Locating A Missing Person

Skip Trace Tricks For The Repo Man, Bail Enforcement Agent And

Toll Call Records and Unlisted-Nonpublished Telephone Numbers

Trap Lines And Blind Line Services For Skip Tracers And Other


SDS Mark Pouria, a Brooklyn North legend keeping things safe in the 75 Squad, would like to let everyone know that before you venture into the Big Apple you may want to check out the Times Square Earth-Cam for real-time video footage of what�s going on there.

The Earth Cam�s live Video footage at Times Square can be reached at:


Hoping all had an enjoyable Christmas! Who�s looking forward to New Years Eve, anyone??

By the way, the Crime Story DVD-set is great. You may also enjoy the new release of the third season of Homicide: Life on the Street. What a great combination pack!

Monday, December 22, 2003


A short-lived television series, running from 1986-1988, the 48 episodes of CRIME STORY are now available on DVD.

You may recall that this show was about latter-day Untouchables group, which was set in Chicago during the turbulent early sixties before the Miranda act was passed, and portrayed a time when cops could fight dirtier than the crooks, shooting first and asking questions later.

Crime Story centered on the city's Major Crime Unit, headed by hard-boiled Lt Mike Torello, who was played by Dennis Farina, himself an ex-Chicago copper. It is the Major Crime Unit�s battle and rivalry between the ambitious, up-and-coming gangster, Ray Luca and his crew, which would turn into all-out war.

Along with the distinctive visual styling of this production that included fine-tuned period detail and a terrific assortment of '60s rock tunes, the show kicked off with Del Shannon's "Runaway" for the theme tune. It is noted also for its procedural authenticity, which was assured by the fact that the show's co-creator had served for seventeen years with the Chicago PD, while ex-cop Farina had been a member of the actual squad fictionalized in the series.

Although conceived as an epic mini-series with an established beginning, middle and end that would run the course of one season, the NBC network was looking for something more open ended. By the second year, Luca had moved his base of operations to Las Vegas and Torello and his team had become agents of a Federal Strike Force in order to go after him. Unfortunately most of the original writers had jumped ship for the second season, and the series deteriorated dramatically.

This DVD set will certainly be on The Minister�s list for Santa!


A new type of ammunition known as the Aguila IQ has been identified as being able to penetrate bullet-resistant vests.

The ammunition is manufactured in Mexico under the Aguila brand name by the munitions manufacturer TECNOS of Cuernavaca, Mexico, and is being imported into the United States by Centurion Ordinance Inc. of Helotes, Texas, for sale to the general public. The Michigan State Police Ordinance Unit has tested the ammunition and found that it does, in fact, penetrate police issued vests.

The ammunition is available by dealers throughout the United States and can even be ordered over the internet. It is available in .45 ACP IQ, .40 S&W IQ, and 9mm Luger IQ.

This new line of ammunition is loaded with the first intelligent bullet, made of an alloy (no lead) with a low specific weight. This feature allows light bullets like these to have a size similar to those projectiles made from lead.

They are called intelligent - bullets because they recognize the hardness of the target at the moment the projectile hits it, and in nanoseconds the projectile configures accordingly. Thus, if the target is very hard, the IQ bullet will have superior penetration while maintaining its weight and size. If the target is ballistic gelatin, it will not overpenetrate, transferring all the energy into the soft target, and breaking apart into three or four sharp fragments, each creating independent wound channels.


Sgt. Keith Levine, #1658, Comm. Div. December 28, 1991

On December 28, 1991 Sgt. Keith Levine was killed in the line of duty, shot during an off-duty robbery incident.

Sergeant Levine was shot and killed in an exchange of gunfire with an armed robbery suspect at an ATM in Manhattan. Levine was off-duty and with two others in a car when he saw a man being held up by another man and a woman in a white coat at the Manufacturers Hanover Trust automatic teller machine alcove. He got out of the car and chased the male suspect, who then shot him. Christopher Lewis, 25, of 71 W. 128th St., is accused of shooting to death Sgt. Levine, at about 2:15 a.m. Dec. 28. Sadly, Levine was killed while protecting one thief from another, police sources said.

Sgt. Levine was 27 years old and is survived by his parents. His father, highly decorated for his own heroic actions, served as a Special Agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration.

The NYPD Mounted Unit has named a horse "Keith" after the slain officer.


" Don't worry, I don't underrate the cops. But cops can't break a guy's arm to make him talk, and they can't shove his teeth in with the muzzle of a .45 to remind him that you aren't fooling. I do my own leg work, and there are a lot of guys who will tell me what I want to know because they know what I'll do to them if they don't. My staff is strictly ex officio, but very practical."

"It isn't going to be easy getting through this engagement, kitten, but let's keep it cool until we do."
"I hope you're saying that because you're still weak."
I gave her another grin, flipped out Patterson's .45 and pressed it into her palm. "Sure I am, doll, sure I am," I said.
She looked at the slug, smiled and dropped it in her cleavage where it fell into her bra. I suppose."


This is a downloadable PDF book on "Eyewitness Evidence":


A Hearty Congratulations! Goes out to Det. Louis Savarese, who celebrated his Thirty-Year Anniversary with this department on December 17, 2003! Louis is hoping to do another ten before he packs it in!


Congratulations to John Bruton of Brooklyn North Homicide on his well deserved promotion to Detective Second Grade! Should make for a nice gift under the tree!


The Home page of this group can be found at:

A very informative site for active and retired MOS. If you haven�t yet done so, check this site out and �bookmark� it. They are currently seeking assistance in getting the parole for cop-killers Anthony Bottom and Herman Bell denied, seeking all to copy and send letters to the Parole Board and the Governor.



December 22, 1927 Lt Charles Kemmer, 54 Pct, Shot-burglary arrest
December 22, 1940 Ptl Joseph Kussius, GCP Pct, Motorcycle accident
December 22, 1977 PO William Flood, PBQ, Shot-Robbery, off duty
December 22, 1996 PO Charles Davis, MWS, Shot-Off duty robbery
December 23, 1929 Ptl Michael Speer, 71 Pct, Auto accident on patrol
December 23, 1930 Ptl James McMahon, Traffic F, Injured on patrol
December 23, 1939 Ptl John Briggs, 23 Pct, Auto accident on patrol
December 24, 1935 Ptl James Dowling, 25 Pct, Auto accident on patrol
December 24, 1980 PO Gabriel Vitale, 109 Pct, Shot-investigation
December 25, 1935 Ptl Joseph Reiner, Traffic H, Auto accident on patrol
December 27, 1944 Det Anthony McGinley, 5 DetDist, Shot-Domestic dispute
December 28, 1929 Ptl Joseph Jockel, McyDist, Shot-arrest
December 28, 1974 PO Kenneth Mahon, 41 Pct, Shot-robbery
December 28, 1978 PO David Guttenberg, 68 Pct, Shot-robbery
December 28, 1991 Sgt Keith Levine, CommDiv, Shot-robbery, off duty
December 29, 1878 Ptl Asa Furness, 10 Pct, Shot by EDP


You can send e-mail to:

As The Holiday�s are right around the corner, The Minister of Investigation wishes all a healthy and happy holiday! Stay safe, and bring good cheer to all!

Monday, December 15, 2003


From the category �You can�t make this stuff up� comes another winner.

Recently, here in Brooklyn North, a male and his friend were seated in a car on a street off of Atlantic Avenue when, for an as yet undetermined reason, someone began shooting into their car. The driver and his passenger were struck by the shots, but the driver was able to quickly put the car into gear and back out of the block.

He drove himself and his friend the three blocks direct to St. Mary�s Hospital.

If you don�t know, St. Mary�s Hospital has an EMS outpost located at the Emergency Room. As the car and the gunshot victims drove up to the ER they were met by some of the EMS people. Quickly assessing the situation, and realizing the severity of the gunshot wounds, the EMS people took the best course of action available.

They quickly loaded the patients into the EMS bus and took them to KCH!

Apparently it was their professional judgment that the victim stood a better chance of being treated at KCH, and undergoing the approximately thirty-block ride, than being wheeled into St. Mary�s Hospital!

The best care anywhere!


Ptl. Joseph Pelosi, #12174, of the 60 Pct, died in the line of duty on December 8, 1924.

Patrolman Pelosi was killed when he was struck by a car while riding his police bicycle. He was escorting an ambulance on Queens Boulevard when he was struck and fatally injured. He was transported to St. John's Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries one week later.

Patrolman Pelosi was assigned to the Newton Station (60th Precinct) and had only been with the NYPD for four days.


�Naw, she was a friend. I saw her once and spoke to her a few minutes and we got to be buddies. It was one of those things. Then some son of a bitch killed her."

Two drunks with a nickel between them were arguing over what to play on the juke box until a tomato in a dress that was too tight a year ago pushed the key that started off something noisy and hot. One of the drunks wanted to dance and she gave him a shove.
So he danced with the other drunk.

"She saw me sitting there with my stool tipped back against the cigarette machine and change of a fin on the bar, decided I could afford a wet evening for two and walked over with her hips waving hello."You're new around here, ain't ya?"
"Nah. I've been here since six o'clock."
"Buy me a drink?" She crowded in next to me, seeing how much of herself she could plaster against my legs.
"No." It caught her by surprise and she quit rubbing.
"Don't gentlemen usually buy ladies a drink?" she said. She tried to lower her eyelids seductively but one came down farther than the other and made her look stupid.
"I'm not a gentleman, kid."
"I ain't a lady either so buy me a drink."


In Friday, December 12 edition of the NY Post, the following was reported as it relates to the parole of Kathy Boudin, convicted cop killer.

�Gov. Pataki has decided to replace longtime state Parole Board Chairman Brion Travis - four months after he was blamed for the controversial parole of convicted radical killer Kathy Boudin, officials said yesterday.

Pataki's office said Travis, 52, was being shifted to a new post at the state Insurance Department, although his official biography shows he's a criminal-justice expert with no background in insurance issues.

Pataki was highly critical of the Aug. 20 decision to release Boudin - who was convicted of felony murder and robbery after a 1981 Brinks armored car heist in Rockland County that left two police officers and a security guard dead.

He said at the time that "I am thoroughly disappointed and disagree" with the decision.

Pataki spokeswoman Lynn Rasic insisted Travis was not being punished. But administration sources said Travis has been out of favor since Boudin's release.

Meanwhile, Westchester Judge Kenneth Lange ruled against several police organizations seeking to nullify the parole board's release of Boudin.�


In Providence, in what is being billed as the start of a new era of collaboration between public law enforcement and private security agencies, representatives from many of the city's leading security firms joined with with the police yesterday to train how to be partners in the war against crime and terrorism.

In all, some 50 private security managers and supervisors and about 30 uniformed police officers attended the session at the city's Public Safety Complex, described by Police Chief Dean M. Esserman as the first of many.

Details can be found at:


Texas Rangers (The law enforcement people, not the baseball players).

Here is a new resource for investigators. The "International Edition" of the Private Eye List Databse:


December 8, 1924 Ptl Joseph Pelosi, 60 Pct, Auto accident on patrol
December 8, 1932 Ptl Michael Moroso, 23 Pct, Shot by sniper
December 8, 1942 Det Joseph Miccio, 78 Sqd, Shot-investigation
December 8, 1946 Ptl Edward McAuliff, 18 Sqd, LOD injury
December 9, 1932 Ptl John Grattan, Mcy Unit, Motorcycle accident on patrol
December 10, 1929 Ptl Philip Morrissey, 85 Pct, Auto accident on patrol
December 11, 1922 Ptl Francis Mace, 73 Pct, Line of duty injury
December 12, 1966 Ptl Raul Yglesias, PA, Shot-off duty altercation
December 13, 1932 Ptl Louis Wiendieck, Traffic B, Line of duty pursuit
December 13, 1946 Det James Burke, 48 Sqd, Shot-robbery
December 14, 1932 Ptl George Gerhard, 20 Pct, Shot-Robbery pursuit
December 14, 1961 Ptl Hugh Willoughby, 26 Pct, Shot-robbery, off duty

Monday, December 08, 2003


A modern phenomenon involves the application of Sun Tzu�s THE ART OF WAR to all adversarial situations. Leaders from all areas including the military, industry, and athletes have studied this blueprint for battlefield strategy. THE ART OF WAR has long been a recommended reading by the military for the trasining of officers and more recently by major corporations for the development of executives and corporate managers.

How can some of these tactics be applied to the investigative process?

The professional investigator is a warrior of truth often confronted by an adversary with greater resources and numbers. Therefore, creative and strategic thinking is the greatest weapon in the professional investigator�s arsenal.

Here is a look at some of the strategies that can be applied to the investigative process.

�All Warfare Is Based On Deception�. (Chapter I, par. 18)

Deceptive and unorthodox tactics and strategies are as much an integral part of the investigative process as they are of warfare.

Deceptive tactical approaches are regularly used during the course of an investigative interview, especially with a hostile or less than cooperative witness. (We have all seen our share of those!)

The interview process is nothing more than an exercise in �intellectual combat�.

The subject of the interview has information and the interviewer needs to recover that information. It may or may not be in the best interest of the subject to cooperate. The subject may, therefore, engage in tactics designed to derail the interview process and the interviewer from obtaining the truth.

The interviewer must draw upon their experience and skills and apply them in a tactical and strategic manner designed to recover the facts and ultimately lead to the truth.

�Hold Out Baits To Entice The Enemy. Feign Disorder, And Crush Him�. (Ch. I, par.20)

The age-old inquiry strategy best exemplified by TV�s famous detective, Columbo, is an example of this tactic.

Displaying a lack of intellectual sharpness and disorder can lure your subject into a false state of security. They may become over-confident and under-estimate the investigators ability.

This strategy allows your opponent to let their guard down and allows the investigator an opportunity to strike in a covert manner, gaining the advantage over them before they realize they have given you just what you wanted.

If done correctly they may never realize they were defeated until it is too late.

Interview tactics which utilize deception are legally permissible as long as they adhere to specific guidelines. Using deception properly it can be a strong point in the investigative interview process.


I noted in a recent posting to this site the legendary private detective, Philip Marlowe, as written by Raymond Chandler.

I must admit, however, that my favorite fictional character � other then Kojak � has to be Mike Hammer. Mike Hammer is Mickey Spillane�s brash private eye. Mickey Spillane, a character himself, has brought us his Mike Hammer private detective since 1947, through books, movies, and even television. Mickey Spillane, of the opening line, �She came into my office with a pair of 38�s, and a gun�. Mike Hammer was most recently seen in a 1983-84 edition of several made-for-TV-movies under the banner �Mickey Spillane�s Mike Hammer�, with Stacy Keach playing the lead, and in a syndicated television version titled Mike Hammer: Private Eye, also starring Stacy Keach as Hammer.

If nothing else, Mike Hammer has been described as being extreme. Hammer makes his mark following a code of violence which allows nothing to stand in his way.Extreme indeed but there is no questioning the impact of the book or the fact that Hammer was in the classic P.I. mold.

Mike Hammer is a real "never let 'em see ya sweat" kind of guy, whose strength lies not only in his fists and his gun, but also in his moral convictions and sense of justice, with no exceptions.

What is it about Mike Hammer? Trying to draw some similarities, or analogies, I uncovered the following.

Mike Hammer spends his day in his office sipping on scotch, smoking cigarettes, entertaining shapely female clients. I, on the other hand, sip Evian water while lunching on Triscuits, entertaining the likes of Marty Stein, Larry Eggers and Jon Besunder.

Mike Hammer has a buxom, curvaceous secretary named Velda to screen his phone calls, pour him coffee, and make after-work dinner reservations with, and to act as an all around assistant. I have Louis Savarese.

Mike Hammer interviews suspects in their East Side townhouse, sipping on champagne and snacking on caviar. I climb up six flights of stairs over a broken staircase to be cursed at and have the door slammed on my foot, and that�s by the VICTIM�s family!

Mike Hammer can meet �a dame� in a bar with the line �Have we met before, or do I just wish we had?� I tried a line like that and got a beer thrown in my face.

Truth may be stranger than fiction. But sometimes the fictional version sounds oh, so appealing.


Military Police Officers contacted the driver of a Mercedes E500 during a random inspection.

They found a loaded .357 S&W Revolver tucked away in a compartment underneath the driver�s seat. This compartment comes as standard equipment in the Mercedes E500 sport. The compartment appears to be too small for any legitimate use, but the Mercedes dealer states that its intent is to store a first aid kit in.

If you stop a subject driving an E500 be aware that from the rear of the vehicle you will probably be unable to see and recognize the driver opening the compartment. The compartment opens very easily and opens to render a firearm easily accessible with very little movement.


PI Museum: An interesting cross-section of investigative history. This is an actual museum, located in San Diego. A virtual-tour of the museum can be found on their web site located at:


When Chris Cincotta throws a party, he goes all out.

Lehman Brothers recently hosted Chris� party as a Law Enforcement Appreciation Reception, another name for a Holiday-Party. We knew that it was really Chris� party.

Driving cross-town through Manhattan traffic helped reinforce one of those reasons why we enjoy life here in Brooklyn North just fine.

A virtual who�s-who of New York Law Enforcement was gathered at this event. I was somewhat surprised when I pulled in front and identified myself � apparently Chris hadn�t alerted the staff of the importance of The Minister of Investigation � I was on my own for parking. �Don�t you know who I am� elicited a strange look from the Lehman security officer, and a stern warning to get my car away from their building. Not a problem, though. I made do. Gene Whyte and John Cantwell had the privilege of being able to walk from home, avoiding any transportation horrors. It was certainly worth it.

I am not as skilled as Mike Carney in the art of eating lamb-chops while standing up, so I stayed with the basic finger-food combinations. We waited all night for the music to start, but apparently Chris thought that would only inhibit the fine conversation of the room, so he didn�t bother to book any. Chris looked resplendent in a holiday tie, one that he would never get away wearing in the days he was the 77 Squad Sergeant. You�ve certainly moved up in the world, Chris. No reception like this was ever thrown at the Starlight Lounge on Utica Avenue!

I tried to pass the party off as a benefit in my honor to a friend who brokers-stocks for that company, but it didn�t quite work. Maybe next time.

Friday, December 05, 2003

"I don't mind if you don't like my manners. I don't like 'em myself. They're pretty bad. I grieve over them long winter evenings."
A quote from Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep


A reference in a recent posting to this site mentioned Philip Marlowe, a character written about by Raymond Chandler in his historic private-eye stories that started with THE BIG SLEEP.

It was Raymond Chandler's Marlowe that would define for all time the who, what, where and why in private eye stories � in books, in movies and on TV.
In comparison to counterparts Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot, Marlowe is a lousy detective. He spends a lot of time in jail, he is always one step behind the bad guys, and his clients always seem to be getting killed or arrested. None of this seems to matter, though.

From the loneliness, the quick, sarcastic cynical jibes masking a battered romantic, the love/hate relationship with the cops, the corruption that exists in all levels of society, it's all here in Chandler�s stories.

Philip Marlowe, for better or worse, is the archetypical private eye. He runs a single man operation out of the Cahuenga Building in Los Angeles. Tall, and big enough to take care of himself, he likes liquor, women, reading, chess and working alone, and is educated enough that he boasts he can speak English "if he's required to." He used to work for the district attorney, but was fired for insubordination, thus starting a cliche that still hasn't run out of steam.

I�d recommend picking up THE BIG SLEEP for an adventure into Philip Marlowes world!


It has recently been learned that colleges and universities are routinely assigning dummy Social Security numbers to foreign students for identification purposes.

These social security numbers begin with �777�.


Identity Theft Resource Center:
The Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) is a nationwide nonprofit organization dedicated to developing and implementing a comprehensive program against identity theft -by supporting victims, broadening public awareness, disseminating information about this crime and decreasing the potential victim population.

Federal Trade Commission Identity Theft Resources:
Identity theft is a serious crime. People whose identities have been stolen can spend months or years - and their hard-earned money - cleaning up the mess thieves have made of their good name and credit record. In the meantime, victims may lose job opportunities, be refused loans, education, housing or cars, or even get arrested for crimes they didn't commit.

To help someone who believes their identity has been stolen, here's some helpful tips:


You probably already know that the Borough HQ building at 175 Wilson Ave, the HQ for the Strategic & Tactical Command Brooklyn North, suffered a little smoke and water damage recently.

It seems a little fire erupted in the office that DI Ruffle occupies within the Detective Operations Office. Occurring after the office was closed up on the 4x12 tour, the smell was discovered by a PAA on the 1st Floor who then � along with others- went to investigate. Assisted by our FDNY brothers, the fire went without causing much damage.

Building Maintenance is in the process of turning everything back to normal, but it will take some time. You can imagine the confusion and disorder this has created! Marty Stein continues to do his best to fix every problem in site, as Heather and Donna wade over the puddle of water trying to get those Updates out. Jimmy Rizzetello, back from his stint in the Coast Guard, should be comfortable walking through the puddles in the office. (What was it that Tommy Coomey used to call DI Johnson? A member of the puddle-Navy?) To make matters worse, the Islanders lose to the Rangers, which really turned Paul Molloy�s world upside down.

How did the fire start you ask? Must have been electrical. Perhaps it was all the work that Marty has the staff doing just got too hot to handle. Could the copy machine have overheated from being overworked?

Some have often said that the work in the Boro is done with a lot of smoke & mirrors - well, recently, the mirrors have disappeared and only the smoke remains.


Only in New York, as the saying goes.

Only in New York can you go to a Kosher Delicatessen for a pastrami sandwich, and get served by a waitress from Kingston, Jamaica. As you order your pastrami she tells you about her Thanksgiving dinner feast, of goat and oxtail. Your sandwich is then carefully prepared by Mohammed, the Iranian born in the Middle East who - basically, anyway - has a grasp on the English language. All the while, you�re listening to Christmas music! Which continues playing on the radio, while the two Jewish-American brother/owners swap stories about how best to put a tongue-and-groove floor into your kitchen while jousting with customers on the phone who can�t imagine why their delivery is taking forty-five minutes to go a half-block!

The pastrami's pretty good, though. Almost as good as the entertainment!

Siegel's Deli, 2nd Ave and 86th Street, NYC


Don�t you just love winter in New York?

Nothing beats a great snow storm, right? The only thing worse than the actual snow is the buildup on the TV and radio for the days in advance. �Snow Watch�, �Storm Watch�, �Winter Storm Approaching�. All the good news to keep your spirits up. I understand that Mike Carney is a real fan of the Four-Day Weather Watch � and the scare tactics that go into play. Why, when it starts to snow, does everyone go out and buy milk and water? Can anyone remember the last time our water supply ceased in a snow storm?

Maybe for those in a different line of work, this is all fun and games. Teachers, for example. This is just great � another excuse to shut down school, and stay home from work. Kids love it � �let�s go play in the snow�. Even Sanitation workers get a smile on their face when it starts to snow � overtime! No, give me the sun and sand any day. All our brothers and sisters who have recently retired, or are on Terminal Leave, are sitting at home laughing at us right now. I bet Bob Fragoletti is getting a good laugh right now. Joe Heffernan too. Then there's Junior Labarbera, whose Terminal Leave runs him until April 2005 - he'll have TWO WINTERS to think real hard about all his buddies he left here in the cold.

This snow is for the birds!


What can you say, when you�re at the scene of a homicide interviewing the �First-Officer�, and he tells you, �I really have to go � I can�t stay any longer, to see the ADA or anything, because it�s going to snow and I have to get home�?


Monday, December 01, 2003


Differences between interviews and interrogations can be noted as follows.

Interview is a non-accusatory procedure where the primary focus is to collect information.

Interviews are conducted at various locations. Interrogations are attempted in highly structured, controlled settings where privacy is essential.

Note taking is encouraged during an interview but should not be done during an interrogation.

Interviews are conducted within a limited time frame, while an interrogation is not limited by time.

Both of these processes have, recently, fallen under the more antiseptic term �debriefing�. It sounds better, and does not carry with it the connotation
associated with an �interrogation�.


Congratulations are in order for some recent promotions, made just in time for a Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Promoted on Tuesday, November 25, were:

Matthew Prial of the 83 Squad and Gregory O�Brien of the 88 Squad, both promoted to Detective Second Grade.

Joseph Tallarine of the 83 Sqd is sure to welcome his promotion to Detective-Investigator (Third Grade). In addition to his investigative duties in the 83 Sqd. Joe is also an Honor Legion Board Member. Long overdue, but Congratulations all the same!

The promotions to Second Grade also saw Det. Donna Torres, a recent contributor to this site who is assigned to Manhattan North Homicide, achieve the step-up.

From the extended-family of Brooklyn North Detectives was the promotion of Joe Campbell, the current C.O. of the 73 Precinct, to Deputy Inspector. Never seen without a smile on his face, this promotion is well-deserved, and we all wish you the best. (In a related story on Joe Campbell�s promotion, see the accompanying article on this site.)


An article in the Wednesday, November 26 edition of the NY POST by Larry Celona highlighted the promotion of Joe Campbell, the C.O. of the 73 Pct, to Deputy Inspector.

It was noted that fifteen years after �his brush with death�, this �choirboy cop� who was nearly killed in a wild gun battle with a Brooklyn robber, received this deserved promotion.

�It was on January 6, 1988 when Campbell, a 26-year-old cop, stopped a robbery-in-progress at a Brighton Beach apartment.

Cops were called in after a resident woke up to find a trio of masked men in her bedroom, one of them leaning over her bed with a gun, demanding cash.

Two of the men fled, but the third ran into Campbell and his partner as they rushed into the building.

In the ensuing shootout, Campbell was hit in the stomach and seriously wounded by a bullet fired from a .357 Magnum by 25-year-old Kumar Ramesar.

Ramesar was shot dead and fell on top of Campbell, who spent the next 14 months recovering from his wounds.�

Joe, you continue to be an inspiration to all of us! Congratulations once again!

If you missed Larry Celona�s excellent piece on Joe Campbell you can go to the NY Post web-site at to read the entire text.


Written in 1945 by Raymond Chandler, the legendary author of private-eye (Phillip Marlowe, The Big Sleep, etc) detective fiction, the following essay is noted as the most-quoted non-fiction piece of detective genre.

For detectives all over, whether you read crime fiction or not, I am sure you will find this of interest. Printed as part of �The Simple Art of Murder� in the November 1945 issue of The Atlantic Monthly, Chandler's focus is on the private-eye himself, not so much where his literary forbears are, but who he is. Here's just an excerpt.

"In everything that can be called art there is a quality of redemption. It may be pure tragedy, if it is high tragedy, and it may be pity and irony, and it may be the raucous laughter of the strong man. But down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid. The detective in this kind of story must be such a man. He is the hero, he is everything. He must be a complete man and a common man and yet an unusual man. He must be, to use a rather weathered phrase, a man of honor -- by instinct, by inevitability, without thought of it, and certainly without saying it. He must be the best man in his world and a good enough man for any world. I do not care much about his private life; he is neither a eunuch nor a satyr; I think he might seduce a duchess and I am quite sure he would not spoil a virgin; if he is a man of honor in one thing, he is that in all things.

"He is a relatively poor man, or he would not be a detective at all. He is a common man or he could not go among common people. He has a sense of character, or he would not know his job. He will take no man's money dishonestly and no man's insolence without a due and dispassionate revenge. He is a lonely man and his pride is that you will treat him as a proud man or be very sorry you ever saw him. He talks as the man of his age talks -- that is, with a rude wit, a lively sense of the grotesque, a disgust for sham, and a contempt for pettiness.

"The story is this man's adventure in search of a hidden truth, and it would be no adventure if it did not happen to a man fit for adventure. He has a range of awareness that startles you, but it belongs to him by right, because it belongs to the world he lives in. If there were enough like him, the world would be a very safe place to live in, without becoming too dull to be worth living in."


There is a law in Florida regarding the unlawful display of authorized indicia of law enforcement authority. Basically, you can't wear law enforcement apparel unless you are a police officer.

Recently, though, a Florida District Court of Appeals declared the Florida statute unconstitutional, concluding that the law violates First Amendment protected speech. Somehow they have interpreted this protection of speech to include the willingness to pass yourself off as someone you are not.

This seems to coincide with another recent development in Florida regarding home invasion and push in robberies where the perps display police apparel and/or badges in order to gain entry.

This has also, understandably so, further developed into problems of legitimate police officers having problems with citizens questioning them after being shown legitimate police credentials.

With the recent court decision authorities are expecting not only more "law enforcement" type home invasions, but issues arising out of legitimate traffic stops, etc.


December 2, 1994 PO Raymond Cannon, 69 Pct, Shot-robbery in progress
December 3, 1922 Ptl John Kennedy, 123 Pct, LOD injury
December 3, 1934 Ptl John Monahan, 14 Div, Shot-arrest
December 3, 1954 Ptl Joseph Norden, 105 Pct, Shot by EDP
December 3, 1973 PO Vincent Connolly, Bomb Sqd, Auto accident on duty
December 4, 1923 Ptl Alfred Van Clieff, 63 Pct, Motorcycle accident
December 6, 1903 Ptl Frank Redican, 1 Pct, Fire rescue
December 6, 1941 Ptl Thomas Casey, 17 Pct, Shot-Robbery pursuit