Friday, April 21, 2017

A "Cut Throat" Crew (Episode 4.8)

Previously on: Monica asked Vic to take a step back from the seizure task force. Edgar-veda started having an affair with a prostitute named Sara; their sex games involve him pretending to be a rapist. Antwon offered to tell Shane where Angie's body is; all Shane has to do for that information is kill Vic.

We open on Vic as he drives aimlessly through a bad neighborhood, listening to Alice In Chains. He knocks on a door, which is opened by Monica. Her living room (actually, the whole house) is in serious need of furniture. The new captain believes in living where you patrol, which doesn't sound like a safe plan to me. Monica herself even says, "It seemed like a good idea a month ago when I put down the deposit." Vic suggests posting undercover units outside, but Monica is too ethical to divert limited neighborhood resources to protect her own ass.

Vic asks why she called. Does the captain want him to find code violations so she can get her deposit back? Monica says pulling him off the street wasn't personal; Vic's face was plastered all over the L.A. news. She fully supports him.

Vic tells the guys he's late to their clubhouse meeting because he was taking care of things. Lem hopes he means Shane. How are they supposed to help protect Vic from getting killed when they don't know where he is? Lem and Ronnie are nervous that they haven't seen Shane or Army all day. Vic promises they'll handle it together when the time is right.

Edgar-veda wishes Sara had consulted him before dying her hair blond, but he's sure he'll get used to it. He goes into the bathroom with the condom Sara hands over. When he comes out, Sara is just hanging up the phone and looks upset. Her sister is upset about being fired and wants to come over. Edgar-veda is sure they can make it a quickie. Sara promises they'll finish their "date" another time.

Edgar-veda gets in his car, but doesn't leave. He watches as Sara lets another man in the house. He looks pretty pissed off. Come on, dude, she's a hooker. What do you expect?

Vic and Monica arrive at a bloody crime scene. Billings exposits that Mitch Robville's throat was cut; Monica knows the victim as a neighborhood informant. "Idiot shouldn't have turned down our offer to move him," says Vic. Monica is upset; she promised to protect informants and now two are dead. She wants Vic to find out who did it.
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Antwon comes out of his room, hoping Vic has a warrant to be in his house. Vic challenges the shot-caller. Does he think anyone is fair game? That he's invincible? "I don't get what you're spitting," says Antwon. Vic threatens that Antwon will be spitting teeth if he gives the word for somebody else to get hurt. He also advises him to get the door fixed.

Monica wants all other CI's in protective custody until they figure out who's behind the murders. Vic worries that could only make things worse. Monica is also calling Internal Affairs to find the leak. Vic would rather see if he can do that himself. Monica wants him to focus on the murders for now.

Vic tells Lem and Ronnie to see if Angie and Mitch have anything in common. "Why bother?" asks Lem, "We know Shane and Antwon are responsible for Angie." "We can't tell that to the captain, can we?" says Vic. Lem presses, "What about Shane?" Vic's like "not this again."

Vic has an idea. He stole Shane's cell phone from his locker. Lem can keep an eye on who calls. Ronnie can't believe that's the master plan. Neither can I. Shane and Lem are out for each other's blood already; imagine if Shane finds out who has his phone. Vic appreciates Lem and Ronnie having his back, but he doesn't need their help.

"Your unfinished business kicked down my door last night," Antwon tells Shane. Tomorrow's morning news better feature a shot of Vic's crying children. If not, Jackson will be the one grieving for his dad on TV. Antwon rachets up the threat by asking if Mara still shows open houses.

A body has turned up in a high school parking lot: science teacher Ken Gibbin. His throat was cut, just like Mitch. He's not a registered police informant, but maybe he snitched on a student. Monica asks Vic to check Mr. Gibbin's class rosters with the principal, "see who's not on the dean's list." Vic isn't so sure this is related to Mitch. Monica plans to call in the next shift to provide protection to the informants in safe houses.

One of Mr. Gibbin's students insists somebody planted drugs in his locker. Vic asks if the kid got back at his teacher for turning him in by slitting his throat. "Nah, Gibbs wasn't no rat," the boy says. When he got in trouble, they'd talk about it man-to-man; the police never got involved.

Vic learns the kid wasn't gang-affiliated before he went to juvie, "but to stay alive, he had to claim Spookstreet." The same gang supplied crack to the house Mitch informed on. Vic offers to talk to one of Danny's sources, a Spookstreeter's baby mama. "All her tips have been One-Niners. She'd never give up her own," says Monica. Vic thinks Danny might be able to persuade her. He also has a theory on the leaks: Edgar-veda's office is reviewing a bunch of their seizures.

The Spookstreet baby mama claims not to know anything about the murders. Vic asks for her price. Baby Mama's reaction is just what Monica predicted: "Money's for One-Niner shit only." Danny wants to talk to the woman alone.

A convenience store owner was hit with a bottle by a man during a robbery. He guesses $300 is missing from the register. A customer pumping gas saw it happen and called 911. Dutch interviews the customer, who looks like a Jon Cryer knockoff. Not Jon positively ID's the sketch Claudette shows him.

Edgar-veda praises Julien for taking a stand against the seizures. He asks Julien to run the license plate number of Sara's other john, lying that this car dinged his wife's car in a grocery store parking lot and the driver took off.

Upstairs, Monica lets the councilman know that the seizure CI list was compromised. Could there have been a leak on his end? Edgar-veda says that's a ridiculous idea. Has she called IAD or looked into Vic? Monica is adamant that, while Vic may do a lot of questionable things, "he would never put innocents at risk." Edgar-veda agrees to have his staff interviewed by IAD...after they talk to Vic.

Danny tells Baby Mama that she can't be half in/half out with Spookstreet. Not only is she putting her own life at risk, her 2-year-old son Malcolm could get killed. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but it's still a real possibility. Why don't they go find a tattoo parlor willing to put Spookstreet ink on a baby? Does she really want to repeat the cycle of Malcolm wearing colors and her wearing black to his funeral?

Danny lets Vic and Monica know that Spookstreeters would be getting new tattoos if they were behind the slit throats.
Something along these lines?
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An artist named Skitch usually does the gang's work.

An Asian convenience store clerk recognizes Claudette's sketch. The guy is a regular who comes in for 2-3 loose cigarettes ("looseys") a few times a week. The clerk isn't allowed to break packs, but does it anyway.

Dutch starts to leave and suddenly parks the car. A guy who looks a hell of a lot like the sketch just went into the store to buy a cup of coffee. Enter Dutch, saying, "Hey, police! Don't throw that coffee!" Of course, the guy does it anyway, soaking Dutch's suit but missing his face. Dutch tackles and arrests him. "We've been looking for you, Starbuck."
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Skitch works out of the back of a U-Haul. Very sanitary. He claims he'd remember if a Spookstreeter had come today, asking for a Grim Reaper. He'd be happy to hook Vic up with a swastika, though. Danny decides it'd be a good idea for her to go wait in the car. Vic picks up what looks like a branding iron: "Don't mind any strange noises comin' from this area." "Maybe there were two other guys around here," Skitch amends.

Monica gives Lem and Danny some Polaroids of the Spookstreeters in question: Hook and Cutter-10. She wants Lem walking point, even though Vic and Billings are investigating the murders. She promises Vic will have a chance to interrogate the gangbangers. Frustrated, Vic slams the gate on the evidence cage.

On the bust, Danny orders the driver out of the car. When he doesn't comply, Lem drags the guy through the open window, saying, "You heard the lady." Ronnie finds a bloody knife on the passenger seat.

"What's your reason for killing anyone helping us?" Monica asks Suspect #1. He's toast because the knife has his fingerprints on it, along with the victims' blood. Why murder a teacher? "He's a snitch's snitch," Suspect #1 explains. Everyone knew Mr. Gibbin gave up the One-Niner's drug den. "You got played, man," says Vic. Mr. Gibbin wasn't an informant, just a citizen. That hit was a personal score. Suspect #1 gives up who told him Mr. Gibbin was a rat: Tracy from the high school drill team.

The Coffee Bandit refuses to admit to anything. "Every once and a while, somebody commits a crime that we cops have to smile at," says Dutch. Oh yeah, getting third-degree burns from hot coffee is a riot. "Any dumbshit criminal can use a gun," says Coffee Bandit, who got the idea when "some broad threw coffee in my face."

Monica tells Dutch the department will pay to have his suit dry-cleaned. His and Claudette's work isn't done, though. Coffee Bandit isn't the same person who hit the first clerk with a bottle. All they know about that suspect is "he's a part-time smoker" who buys looseys. Monica remembers when those cost a dime. "Ah, the good old days," Claudette sighs. Dutch is surprised both women were smokers.

Sara tells Edgar-veda he can't just drop by her house. She asks him to leave, but he doesn't. Edgar-veda wants to know if he's as generous as, say, Dell Rosetti. Sara claims Dell is just a friend. Edgar-veda sees right through that: "You don't have friends; you have clients." Did Dell buy the house? Is he the reason she dyed her hair?

Edgar-veda runs down a list of perversions, curious which one Dell prefers. "You don't get to talk to me like that, even when I'm on the clock," says Sara. Edgar-veda knows Dell is a condo developer who cuts corners on his projects, which could land him in big trouble with the code enforcement department. He's married and "if the wife had any brains, she put a cheating clause in the pre-nup." "You've got a wife too," Sara reminds him. Should she call Aurora?

Edgar-veda doesn't think she'd do that, his smile becoming predatory. He doesn't want to come second to anyone.

Corinne is surprised to see Dutch at the Barn, even though he, ya know, works there. She notices the coffee on his suit. Dutch shrugs that he had a messy, albeit successful takedown. "We'll celebrate later," Corinne flirts. Of all the guys in the Barn she could've hooked up with, it had to be the closet sociopath. Not Lem who colors and plays videogames with her kids.

Dutch scoots away when Vic walks in. Corinne tells her ex-husband that their daughter Megan is ineligible for some kind of clinical trial involving autism because the Mackeys are suing the same drug company that's running the trial. Ugh, this autism/vaccine bunk is getting really old.

Corinne suggests dropping out of the lawsuit. "We're not eating 15 grand," says Vic. Corinne believes 7-year-old Matthew's autism is so severe he'll never have a normal childhood; Megan isn't even 3, so she still has a chance. As a pediatric occupational therapist's daughter, I call bullshit. Some kids aren't diagnosed with autistic disorders until late elementary school or early middle school, but they learn to adapt to life if they have proper support from their parents and therapists.

Corinne has no idea what to do because staying in the lawsuit would give them financial security for Matt. Vic tells her that he'll take care of things.

Shane pulls up to one of Antwon's rec centers, telling Halpern to get in the truck. Halpern hesitates, having gotten a beatdown from Shane once before. Shane tells Halpern he might want to hear about new opportunities in the heroin trade. Little Pop of the Los Mags has a customs agent in Arizona on his payroll.

Shane and Army know that Halpern called the shots until Antwon got out of prison. How'd he like to be king again? After all, "[Antwon] doesn't give a shit about the One-Niners;" Halpern doesn't owe him any loyalty. The Los Mags will only sell heroin to the One-Niners if Antwon is out of the picture. Once Antwon is locked up, the injunctions will stop and the police will move on to the next crime wave. Everyone comes out a winner. All Shane wants in return is the location of Angie's body.

Halpern passes on the offer. He doesn't care about being in charge, unlike some cowards willing to kill their own partner. "Kill what partner?" Army is alarmed. Halpern says, "Don't worry, Pablo, it ain't you." Army correctly guesses that Antwon wants Shane to kill Vic. Halpern thinks he'll tell Antwon about this little meeting.

When Halpern tries to get out of the truck, Army puts a gun to the back of his head. If Halpern squeals, they're "dick-deep in dead girls and bullets." Shane tells Army to put the gun away, but his partner just lowers it. Suddenly, there's a gunshot from the backseat. "I didn't mean it!" Army screams. Fortunately for Halpern, the bullet only hit his shoulder: "That asshole shot me! What's wrong with y'all? Holy shit!" Shane's thoughts exactly.

Army demands to know why Shane didn't tell him about Vic. The bleeding gangbanger is now lying across the backseat. "I said shut up!" yells Shane, turning off the police radio. He asks again about Angie's body and gives Halpern the choice of being dropped outside a hospital or bleeding out in the desert. Halpern won't talk. Shane snarls, "Next stop, Joshua Tree."

Monica understands that Mr. Gibbin failed Tracy for cutting class. Tracy says she couldn't have slit the throat of someone twice her size. She knows Hook and Cutter-10 have already been arrested. Tracy thinks they have more important criminals to chase, like Dynamite the pimp or her numbers-running mail lady. Monica announces that she's booking the teen for conspiracy to commit murder and reckless endangerment.

Vic doubts Monica can prove that Tracy used the tense climate and Stop Snitching culture to have her teacher killed. Monica fumes she's sick of being blindsided by what's going on out on the streets. She's more determined than ever to move in to her new house on the block, to show the community she's there with them. "They won't give a shit," Vic warns.

Vic asks the desk sergeant to assign a patrol car outside Monica's new house. She's moving into the 'hood and won't ask for protection and Vic wants to make sure "no assholes to get any cute ideas." Danny thinks it's bullshit Vic couldn't go on the bust and invites him out for a beer. Vic can't; he has the kids tonight and a stakeout.

Driving past a homeless shelter, Halpern tells Shane that Angie is buried under one of the porta-potties. "Not only did you kill her, you gotta shit on her too?!" shouts Army. Shane speculates, "Methane helps hide the death smell." The shelter has guards 24/7, so how are they gonna get her?

Shane parks in the middle of the street and drags Halpern out of the truck. He warns him not to tip off Antwon about the need to move the body. "We can't just leave him here," Army protests. Shane's not listening: "You tell Antwon I'm done with his shit, all of it." Shane will kill Antwon if he comes after Mara, Jackson, himself, or Vic. He and Army leave Halpern in the street.

Edgar-veda watches from his car as Dell leaves Sara's house. He goes inside and grabs her by the hair. "That's too hard," says Sara. Edgar-veda throws her down so she's bent over the couch. I can't tell if she's honestly fighting and scared or if this is another twisted game.

"Did you talk to that guy who's looking for you?" Officer Paula asks Dutch, "He said something about a mini-mart." A black man is outside in the parking lot, smoking a cigarette. When he's finished, he promises to tell Dutch everything he did.

Our suspect is trying to quit smoking and buys one cigarette at a time. A new clerk was working at the gas station and refused to open a pack. All he wanted was one cigarette. "You stole $300 from the register," Dutch adds, "Maybe now you can afford the whole pack." The guy admits to assault but swears he's not a thief.

Monica talks to Gino of Internal Affairs. She's sending him undercover into the gang task force to check up on Vic. Here's the thing, she doesn't want to prove Vic guilty; she wants to prove him innocent.

Vic goes to Corinne's with a Backpack O' Cash. He assures her it's clean, but she shouldn't deposit more than $5,000 every few months. Corinne won't take it. Vic tells her this is the only way to drop the lawsuit and get Megan in the clinical trial. Can he kiss the kids good night? Corinne softens: "Why did you have me take Cassidy tonight? Are you okay?" "Nothing I can't handle," he says quietly. It seems to Corinne like Vic is saying goodbye, maybe forever. She stuffs the Backpack O' Cash in a cabinet.

"You're pretty quiet tonight," Danny observes as she and Vic sit outside Monica's house. The captain gives them a hard look as she brings out the trash. The house lights go off. Danny thanks Vic for helping her get on the gang task force. They start making out in front seat of the car. Vic feels her up (and down).

Dutch and Claudette re-interview their witness, who eventually admits to stealing from the cash register after the clerk was knocked out. He's sorry. Claudette quotes Rhianna: "You're only sorry you got caught."

In the clubhouse, Lem is trying to call Vic and keeps getting voicemail. "What the hell kinda plan is this? We can't even reach Shane," says Ronnie. Lem shakes his head: "I don't feel right at all." That's probably the ulcer talking, honey. Ronnie just wants this to be over with. Lem doesn't want Vic to go alone; if Shane brings Army, it'll be two-on-one.

Shane suddenly opens the clubhouse door, looking for Vic. He also finally realized his phone's been missing all day and grabs it off the table. Lem makes up a story that the watch commander found it. "Thanks for the heads up." Shane's tone is pissy. Lem's like "bro, I can't call you if your phone is here." When Shane leaves, Lem practically flies at the clubhouse door. Ronnie stops him; this isn't how Vic wants things to happen. Do you really think Lem cares about that at this point?

Shane calls Vic, sounding choked up: "Can you meet me? Just you?" Their meeting spot ends up being near the train tracks. Shane paces, hemming and hawing for a second before saying, "I'm in some serious shit." Vic aims a gun at his best friend: "I bugged your car. It's you or me, right?"

Shane lays out what happened: "Antwon killed Angie right in front of me and Army. He did it with our guns." Vic thought Shane had nothing to do with Antwon. Shane argues it's nothing he and Vic haven't done. And Vic should know that Shane could never hurt him; there's too much history. It was a bluff.

Halpern showed them where Angie's body is buried, but the job's too big for Shane and Army alone: "Army's gun went off. Halpern's still alive, but once Antwon finds out, I'm dead." He sent Mara and Jackson out of L.A. for safety's sake. Almost crying, Shane begs for Vic's help. Crocodile tears, as far as I'm concerned.

Vic eyes his best friend's gun: "You've got one shot. Take it." Shane refuses. The money train messed up a lot of things, but Vic is still like a brother. "I need you." His teary hazel eyes lock with Vic's cold blue ones. Shane closes his eyes, waiting for the bullet to hit him. Vic can't bring himself to pull the trigger. End of episode.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Carelessness Gets People "Hurt" (Episode 4.7)

Previously on: Raiding a church netted over 25 pounds of black tar heroin. Antwon killed Lem's teenage informant Angie with Shane and Army's guns. Lem doesn't know she's dead and confronted Shane about what he had to do with her disappearance; Ronnie saw that whole thing unfold thanks to a bug he planted in Shane's car. This means Vic is now facing the prospect of taking down his best friend.

Antwon's criminal enterprises are having a rough week. He lost half a million dollars worth of heroin, the El Salvadorans cut off his supply, and several of his top guys are in jail. "You're a drug dealer. Why don't you consider it the cost of doing business?" asks Shane. Antwon thinks he might need a new partner. But either way, he wants $20,000 by tomorrow. He knows Shane has it after skimming from the till all these years.

Elsewhere, Lem, Ronnie, and Vic casually plan to bug the car of a Russian (?) Armenian (?) gangster named Kozodav. Very similar last name to Kenny Johnson's character on Sons of Anarchy. Must be a Sutter touch. Anyway, Lem doesn't think the guy looks so big and bad. Vic reminds him that appearances can be deceiving: "Half his enemies are fish food in the L.A. River."

Actually, they're watching Ronnie's back while he replaces the hard drive in the surveillance equipment. It's a horrible idea, given that Kozodav and company are at a sidewalk table not 30 feet away. Lem tries to point that out, but nobody ever listens to the poor guy. Ronnie's stealth mode looks more like Pink Panther.

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Lem's curious about what Shane and Antwon discuss. Ronnie hasn't found anything incriminating on the tapes yet. Not sure I'd be trusting Vic to dig up dirt on the guy who's basically his little brother. Ronnie is still working on the car when the Russians finish their coffee, so the other two scramble to distract them.

Lem badges them and Kozodav is very cordial. Vic notices their Russian mafia ink and "new policy says I gotta get your name, rank, and serial number, comrade." Kozodav tells Vic to save his shakedown tactics for people who can't afford good Jew lawyers. Lem finds a gun on the other comrade. "Might be a good time to get that Jew on the phone," says Vic. Kozodav argues that his bodyguard has a permit.

Ronnie rolls out from under the car. Vic checks their permit and apologizes for the inconvenience.

Vic brings Monica a video of Kozodav hiring someone for an insurance scam torch job on a building. However, our Russian friend didn't mention when the fire would take place. Vic thinks the target "sounds residential. Shithead joked there were only Mexicans living there." If they go ahead and arrest Kozodav, he'll be facing at least 20 years for extortion and racketeering. He might give up the arsonist for a lighter sentence.

Monica agrees to the plan, then praises Vic's multitasking abilities. "I couldn't have done it without Ronnie," says Vic modestly. This is true; his ass couldn't squeeze under a car to plant bugs. Ronnie, who hears "Attaboy" even less often than Lem does, beams with pride.

In the parking lot, smoke is pouring from under the hood of Vic's car. He fans it, doing a B-movie Native American impression, "Big Chief Vic need him new driving machine so he can catch him bad guy." Danny jokes that she didn't realize Vic knew smoke signals. Vic wants a seized vehicle as a replacement and promises Lakers tickets to whoever brings him one.

Danny asks what he has in mind. Vic calls out, asking what Dutch drives. "A Subaru," Dutch replies. Vic says, "Anything but a Subaru." I'm sure Lem would let Vic borrow his Jeep for the day. Vic adds that he doesn't want a car "that goes zero to 60 in four minutes." Danny turns to Julien, "Let's find the big guy a new car." Have you seen Lem? I think you mean "the other big guy."

Speaking of Lem, he's all gung-ho to take down some Russians. Somebody hands him a shotgun and it's like watching the kid from A Christmas Story unwrap his Red Ryder. Shane doesn't look pleased about this development. Vic lies that bringing Lem back wasn't his idea: "Captain wanted someone from Juvie in-house." Monica tells everyone not to go anywhere.

In the command center, she, Vic, Edgar-veda, and Deputy Chief Phillips watch surveillance footage from the church raid. It seems to show one of the officers shoving a civilian woman to the ground. Shrieks echo from the TV. "That is not how it went down. Nobody was screaming," says Monica. She wants the whereabouts of the real tape. Assistant Chief Phillips doesn't know, but this is the version that will be on tonight's 6:00 news. Edgar-veda denies that his press secretary has it. Wait, this guy has a press secretary? Who does he think he is, the President?

Anyway, the tape is a PR nightmare waiting to happen. John Sullivan of the Organized Crime Unit will be taking over the Kozodav raid. Deputy Chief Phillips can't afford to send Monica or Vic knowing they're about to be tonight's top story. Never mind all the heroin recovered from the church. Edgar-veda gloats that crime has gone up 4% since the seizures were instituted. He'll be reviewing each case individually and wants full access to their files.

Monica tells Vic to find the original tape. In the meantime, he'll be working with Shane. A Byz Lat in state prison wants to turn informant so he can get released early. The inmate is friends with the gang's number-one contraband distributor: Ernesto Dienta. Monica wants Lem to ride along so she can get an idea of how the former Strike Team works together. Well, this oughta be a fun road trip. There's still no progress on Angie and Monica senses an unhappy ending.

Dutch gets a phone call from Mission Cross. A 7-year-old girl was brought to the ER by her foster dad. The doctors think she drank something highly acidic. It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood all the way around. Monica, much more hands-on than the previous captain, wants to join him.

Army wires their informant, Hielo, for sound. He went to prison to protect the Byz Lats, who thanked him by visiting a grand total of once in five years. Hielo and Ernesto are meeting an Indian casino busboy in Echo Park. Indians buy cigarettes tax-free and the Byz Lats resell them at face value. Because they cross state lines, it's federal. The guys can then use RICO to sweep up the Byz Lats. Vic is impressed. Shane shrugs that he learned from the best. You can almost hear Lem's eyes rolling.

Shane assigns car pools. Naturally, him and Vic are together. Lem, Army, and Hielo will be in the other car. Vic quietly tells Lem, "Stay cool and play the good soldier." Maybe not the best choice of phrase to use on someone with very Aryan features.

In Echo Park, Hielo meets with Ernesto and Garcia the busboy near the lake. Hey, It's That Guy! Ernesto is none other than Lombardo Boyar, a character actor I know best as the voice of Lars on Rocket Power. He was also something of a crime drama regular in the late '90s and early-mid '00s with bit parts on shows like Walker, Texas Ranger and Without A Trace (usually as a gangbanger). Interestingly, Lombardo is a real-life Gulf War veteran who served in the legendary 82nd Airborne.

Anyhow, the guys listen in from the van as the Byz Lats haggle their cigarette deal.

At the ER, Corinne is the assigned nurse; she hopes Dutch doesn't mind that she called his cell phone. I'm sure he's thrilled and thinks she'll sleep with him now. Joya, the foster child, is on a ventilator; she suffered burns to her esophagus and may have stomach damage. "There were also signs of sexual assault," Corinne whispers. The substance little girl drank was some kind of household cleaner.

The three detectives stand around the bed, looking grim. A case worker from Child Services is on the way over, for all the good that'll do.

Monica and Claudette go to Joya's foster home. Liz the foster mom reports that she and her husband Frank are taking care of 7 children, all of whom were home with Frank when Joya got hurt. Liz herself was at the grocery store. She leads the detectives to the bathroom shared by all the foster kids: "Sorry about the smell. Joya threw up."

Monica heard Frank found an empty bottle of drain cleaner, but doesn't see it. Liz will ask Bibi, the oldest foster child, if she's seen it. There are at least a dozen prescription bottles in the open medicine cabinet. According to Liz, all the kids are on meds for one reason or another.

Monica notices a padlocked door next to the kitchen. "The closet is our safe place," Liz explains. She opens it; pillows and blankets are heaped on the floor. According to her, they use it for the occasional timeout. The kids have behavioral problems and this gives them someplace to calm down where they can't hurt themselves or anyone else. Looks more like Harry Potter's cupboard under the stairs to me.

Monica informs the woman that this qualifies as child endangerment. Frank told Liz this was no different than sending a naughty kid to their room. Claudette asks if it's possible one of the older kids hurt Joya and made her drink Drano. "Take your pick," shrugs Liz.

Claudette has a preliminary report from the hospital stating Joya was raped that morning. Dutch believes Frank is a control freak and isn't surprised by the "closet-o'-horrors." Child Services sent over information on the other six kids: "[The files] read like the Marquis de Sade." Dutch corrects that there are seven suspects. According to Child Services, 17-year-old Darnell also lives with Frank and Liz. The boy is bipolar with a history of violence. It might be a good idea to see if Lem had any dealings with him.

Upstairs, Frank tells them Darnell ran away 3 months ago. He called Child Services and sent an email, but never heard back. Monica wants to know why he kept cashing Darnell's aid checks. Frank claims his wife handles the finances. When he noticed the mistake, he emailed Child Services.

Frank isn't too bothered about Darnell being gone: "He belonged in a hospital or a prison, not my house." "Sounds like your closet therapy didn't take, huh?" Dutch says lightly. Monica will be recommending that he and his wife lose their foster care licenses. Frank admits he saw Darnell a few weeks ago; he stole groceries and other kids' meds.

Does Frank know where the kid went after that? Frank suggests talking to Darnell's biological mom, who's a junkie. He suspects the kid is using: "Only meds he didn't take were the ones that might actually help him."

Monica asks Darnell's caseworker Paul why he never filed a missing persons report. Paul supposedly didn't know Darnell had run away. Monica shows him a copy of Frank's email. Paul's been to the house twice in the last 3 months. "And you didn't notice one of the kids was missing?" asks Monica. He says Darnell wasn't flagged for followups.

Monica lets him have it with both barrels: "You know who ends up doing that followup? My cops or the M.E. Half of these kids are gonna end up in the penal system. They're time bombs. We shuffle 'em around from place to place, lose track of 'em until they explode." "If you wanna lecture about the foster care system, teach an extension class at UCLA," Paul says nastily, "If we've got a missing teen, stop taking it out on me and do something to find him."

The captain had a lot of dealings with Social Services when she worked with the domestic violence unit. She saw more concern for "filling federally funded beds than in helping reunite families." Paul tells her this is just one mistake. "This is a kid," Monica argues, "so is the one in the hospital with half a throat." Paul taunts her to call his supervisor. The captain explain that he's been arrested for negligence and child endangerment; that family was his responsibility.

Dutch asks what Monica is doing. "Standing on her soapbox," says Claudette. Dutch wonders if Monica has her own or if she borrows Claudette's.

Danny pulls over a car with expired Illinois license plates and smells pot when she walks up to the window. Danny finds some gang ink on the driver, who protests that he's just visiting his cousin. Julien finds a bag of drugs in the glovebox.

The Illinois car, a sporty black Pontiac, is towed back to the Barn. "Looks like we found your new department-issued ride," Danny tells Vic. He admires the leather interior, offering to throw dinner in with the basketball tickets if the charges stick.

The Russian mob bust didn't go as planned. Kozodav wasn't there, but Sullivan went in anyway and arrested his associates. According to Sullivan, he had no choice because the Russians were gonna burn down a residential building. Assistant Chief Phillips and Sullivan ask for the ersatz Strike Team's help transcribing videotapes from the surveillance operation. Vic, of course, is less than pleased about this. Monica tells him to follow the assistant chief's orders.

In the parking lot, Phillips tells Vic there's nothing he can do. Edgar-veda is using his political leverage on Chief Bankston. Phillips advises Vic to keep backing Monica's plays: "The chance she's giving you, it may be the last one you've got on this department."

Monica and Claudette make a house call to Darnell's biological mother. They delicately tell her there was "an incident" at his foster home. "Whatever it is, he probably did it. That boy's no good," says Mom. Darnell steals her things and sells them to buy drugs. He also hustles on 4th Street.

In the interrogation room, Darnell insists, "I didn't mess with Joya or make her drink anything." Dutch wants to take a DNA sample to confirm it. Darnell says no way, but Frank is still his legal guardian and overrides that. The kid gripes that he never gets to have sex; he's always the one helping somebody else get off. So what if Joya is only 7? "I hope you fry," Frank whispers.

Darnell pounds the table and shouts at his foster dad, "This is your fault! Locking us up in a closet and shit!" Frank argues that it was only a temporary timeout and calls the kid an animal. At this point, I'm inclined to agree with Frank's assessment. Darnell claims the foster parents referred to the closet as "the hole." The oldest kids were put in charge; the younger ones would cry in there for hours. Darnell himself had nothing to with the Drano and blames Bibi.

Shane instructs he needs Ernesto on tape admitting to selling the stolen cigarettes across state lines. Hielo is sure Ernesto won't suspect a thing, adding, "Before I went away, I banged his 14-year-old sister. Took her virginity. Fool didn't have a clue. Told him I was helping her with her history homework." Lem tells Hielo to keep that shit to himself. I bet him and Vic both wanna kick his ass.

Hielo keeps talking about how Ernesto's sister was plenty old enough, physically speaking. Lem gives him a shove. Shane steps between them and tells his former friend exactly who's running this show.

The Strike Team listens in as Garcia pays their informant. Hielo asks if he'll get more money when the cigarettes get to St. Louis. Ernesto's done talking business. He whistles and a girl comes out of the house. "All dressed up with no one to blow," as Ernesto puts it. The girl looks too old for Hielo's taste, but he goes inside with her anyway.

Monica found out who filmed the church video: a woman whose nephew works at Antwon's rec center. Edgar-veda feigns surprise that Antwon might've doctored the tape and sent it to the news stations. She asks for help burying it. "You can't unring this bell," says Edgar-veda.

Monica knows he inflated the crime statistics. Edgar-veda ignores that, suggesting she find a way to stop the seizures. She flatly refuses. Edgar-veda thinks she'd better practice begging the chief, who's having trouble explaining why Vic was put in charge. Monica stands by her decision; she doesn't take orders from the city council. Edgar-veda still plans to get the policy overturned, Vic or no Vic.

Danny and Julien have pulled over a car for making an illegal U-turn. The white driver apologizes; he's not from Farmington and is trying to get back to the freeway. The rain is making it hard to see. Danny gives him directions, then asks for his license and registration.

Through the window, Julien spots a bottle of wine in the cupholder. Said bottle doesn't have its original cork. The driver explains he's coming home from lunch and didn't want to waste a $400 bottle. Julien informs him that it violates the open-container law, then tells him to get out.

The driver protests that he had one glass of wine 3 hours ago; he isn't too drunk to drive. Julien finds bootleg DVDs on the passenger seat and inquires whether the guy intends to sell them. The guys says no, he bought them for himself.

Julien asks if the driver's gang-affiliated when he sees a tattoo peeking out of his sleeve. The two men scuffle when Julien demands to see the ink. He wrenches the guys arms behind his back and cuffs him. Danny watches disapprovingly. She quietly asks what he thinks he's doing. Julien sanctimoniously replies, "I'm gonna document his ink. I'm gonna tow his car in. If his lawyer can't prove he didn't intend to sell those DVDs, we'll seize his vehicle. That's what we do, right? Might even get me some Laker tickets."

Ronnie pulls Vic and Lem into the clubhouse, hissing to lock the doors. He shows them last night's surveillance footage from Shane's car. On screen, Antwon asks, "How'd you like to get that little girl's body back, your bullets and all?" He wants to trade Vic's body for hers.

Shane basically tells Antwon to go to hell and turn Angie's body over to the police. With silky menace, Antwon wonders who'll protect Mara and Jackson if Shane goes to prison. This is a one-time offer. Shane eventually agrees to do it. Antwon wants to know when the job is finished. It's hard to tell if Lem or Vic looks more angry and betrayed.

Monica knocks on the door and Ronnie quickly shuts off the TV. Vic whispers for everyone to keep their mouths shut about the tape until he says otherwise. He gives Monica the old "whoops, didn't know I locked the door" excuse. The other guys hurry past the captain. Lem, no doubt, is on his way to toss his guts up in the men's room.

Monica tells Vic he has to take a temporary step back. There's a lot of outrage about the church incident. Vic doesn't like being offered as the sacrificial lamb. He thought Monica believed in him. Monica explains she's protecting the policy; Edgar-veda has the chief in his pocket and is out to hurt Vic. This isn't about cowardice. Vic begs to differ; the only difference between the former captain and Monica is she pretended to have a spine.

Monica is a little taken aback, but calmly says, "You were the redheaded stepchild when I arrived here." She gave him a second chance that nobody else would. She knows this isn't fair, but there's a bigger picture.

Vic goes into the men's room, so pissed he tries to rip a stall door off its hinges. He ends up calming himself down with cold water to the face. Shane pokes his head to say Hielo's ready to make a buy. And geez, for being newly renovated and reopened, the men's room is filthy.

The female detectives sit down with Bibi. Darnell admitted to raping Joya while the older girl was in charge. They also know about the closet. Bibi apologizes to Frank; she really tried to stop Darnell. Bibi poisoned Joya because the little girl was gonna tell her teacher about the rape. The teenager was terrified about the prospect of being sent to another home. She was molested by some previous foster dads and Frank has never been inappropriate.

Danny takes down the latest picture from the gang wall. Julien made his point that not everyone gets equal treatment. Her partner repeats his opinion that the seizure policy is inherently racist. Danny points out that the black kids had enough pot in their car to make it possession with intent.

Julien thinks they've potentially created another dealer. How is the guy supposed to get to his job without a car? You mean his job in Illinois, AKA way out of your jurisdiction? He adds more to the Taking Things Very Personally column by saying that guy could be him if he hadn't gone to church.

Monica interrupts the argument. She understands how Julien could feel conflicted about arresting young black men, but he's a cop and needs to get over it. Like it or not, enforcing the asset forfeiture policy is part of his job now. She'll be putting his name in for an administrative transfer.

The former Strike Team waits for Garcia's van in a vacant lot. Shane and Vic will make sure Hielo is okay; he wants Lem and Army to stay with the van. Lem doesn't know if he can trust Hielo and wants to join the dynamic duo. "I told you to stay," Shane tells him sharply. Vic doesn't stick up for Lem.

As they walk off together, Vic makes an after-you gesture. He's clearly very tempted to shoot Shane in the back. And who could blame him, given what he now knows? Shane and Vic crouch behind a nearby Dumpster, waiting to make their move. Shane keeps glancing nervously at his best friend.

Paul's supervisor asks Monica why he was arrested. Caseworkers are stretched too thin and not liable for what goes on in the homes. Pretty sure she's wrong about that. Monica remembers working a domestic abuse case with this supervisor, in which the other woman promised to get the kids out of the house. Dad got released from jail and beat his daughter Lisa with a golf club; 2 years later, the little girl is still in a coma.

"His psych history didn't come out until after the attack," says the supervisor. It isn't Paul's fault that a 7-year-old was raped and murdered. And that's how she sleeps at night? Monica will release Paul, but the next negligent caseworker will spend the night in county lockup; the one after that will serve a full sentence.

Shane wants to follow Garcia's van to St. Louis. And how do you plan on handling that little jurisdictional problem? "This is gonna be a hell of a bust by the time this thing through," grins Army. Drinks are on him tonight.

Ronnie calls Vic about a coyote mentioned on Kozodav's tapes: El Callado, translation "the quiet one." He uses the guy to ferry in mobsters from St. Petersburg. Vic wants to wait an hour before Ronnie passes the info to Sullivan. He hangs up and says he'll have to miss happy hour; he has overdue paperwork.

Vic is lying about that. He meets up with Ernesto and offers to tell him who's acting as a police informant. In return, he wants El Callado's real name. The coyote plans on sneaking Kozodav out of the country. Ernesto says it's not that easy; Callado isn't a Byz Lat, so it'd take a lot to get a message relayed. How does he know Vic is for real, anyway? Vic adds that he'll make sure the cigarette van doesn't get pulled over.

Ernesto gives Vic the address of where Kozodav is waiting alone for his ride back to Mother Russia. Vic says the informant is Hielo. Ernesto doesn't believe him; the two of them are practically brothers. Well, is Ernesto aware that Hielo did a hell of a lot more than tutor his 14-year-old sister in history class? Ernesto gets in his car and slams the door. Vic tells him, "You do whatever you feel is appropriate with that info. I'll make sure it doesn't blow back on you."

Kozodav is sleeping when Vic puts a burlap sack over his head. He catches Vic in the ribs with a lucky knee. Vic wrestles him to the ground and puts a gun to roughly where the Russian's forehead is, asking for the arsonist's name and address. Gregor is our torch.

Claudette goes to Joya's hospital room. Monica is already sitting at her bedside. The captain realizes she went over the edge earlier. Claudette is understanding: "We've all got burrs under our saddles." Case in point, Julien.

Monica explains why child abuse is Very Personal to her. The captain's childhood friend was beaten by her father on a regular basis. Monica felt powerless to help. If Claudette is staying, the captain has some seizure paperwork to handle.

Vic brings in Gregor, also with a bag over his head. Both are handcuffed to a piece of furniture. Vic cocks his gun and fires, deliberately aiming a few feet over the Russians. He drops his gun on the couch.

"I'm not a great cook, sorry," Corinne apologizes. Dutch pours her a glass of wine and says he liked it. His mind is still on Joya; there's just something about living victims, especially kids. Corinne pulls him close.

Suddenly, Megan comes in, holding a picture book. Dutch asks the toddler, "You want me to read that to you again?" He sits her on his knee and begins reading out loud. Corinne smiles warmly. Oh, Vic would love to see this...

Shane is fuming that Hielo isn't answering his phone. Army guesses their informant is probably getting laid. Who wouldn't be after 5 years in prison? "If this guy goes ghost, I'm gonna look like an asshole," says Shane. Uh, actually, you do that just fine on your own.

Sullivan enters with Kozodav and Gregor. They were found cuffed and gagged at the scene of a shots-fired 911 call. Monica gets a wonder-how-that-happened look on her face.

Vic walks the streets alone in the dark. A police car pulls up alongside him, bright lights aimed right at him. Vic peevishly moves aside his coat, showing them the badge clipped to his belt. He continues on his way, seemingly without a destination in mind. End of episode.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Who Can Tell the Civilians From the "Insurgents" (Episode 4.6)

Previously on: Another rehash of Monica's asset-forfeiture plan and Dutch's deal with A.D.A. Insardi. Antwon murdered Lem's teenage informant Angie and used Shane and Army's guns to do it.

The episode opens at a police auction where seized property is being sold. Vic quips that he should've brought his checkbook. The city attorney signed injunctions to keep One-Niners off the street, which will seriously cut into Antwon's profit margin. One of the items up for auction is the Yamaha crotch rocket that Lem shot from under Weebo last episode.

Antwon meets up with Shane and Army at a gas station. He wants the address of a heroin dealer who's hurting his business, along with half the inventory. Stealing drugs is going too far for Shane's new partner: "We don't move product, get hung up in your shit." Way to finally have a backbone there, Army. Shane will beep Antwon when everything's settled. Yeah, beepers definitely weren't still a thing in '05. That's the year I got my Nokia brick.

Ah, memories.
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"Bitch with a badge doing my bidding." Try saying Antwon's tongue-twister five times fast. "It's a beautiful day." He fist-bumps his associate Halpern.

Monica announces to the Barn at large that the police auction netted over $900,000. The injunctions against the One-Niners are all thanks to Danny and Julien's hard work; officers will be allowed to arrest if they see two or more One-Niners together. The ATF did something similar with the motorcycle gang the Mongols and essentially wiped them out.

Vic has a huge pile of mugshots to match with the injunctions. Lem comes downstairs, very concerned about Angie. Her friends told him she hasn't been at school for days and she normally checks in with Lem every week. Angie wouldn't want to miss her mom's funeral, which is tomorrow. The teen has family in Georgia, but Lem didn't find any packed luggage at Mom's apartment.

Lem has a theory (and no idea how correct it is): Antwon could've found out that Angie gave up the location of the drug cul-de-sac. Monica asks Vic if there's any chance there was a leak. Yeah, and his name is Shane Vendrell. Of course, Vic doesn't tell her that. Lem is literally biting his lip so he doesn't mention it.

Monica is glad Internal Affairs cleared Lem on his third officer-involved shooting in four years. You'd think they'd be further up his rear end than Art was up Raylan Givens'. I suppose the fact that one was a bad judgment call and the other two were justifiable helps. However, the captain is sure Lem's current boss wants him back. Lem's taken the rest of the week off to look for Angie. Oh man, what they find is gonna absolutely break the big fella's heart.

In the clubhouse, Lem thinks it's a pretty big coincidence that Angie went missing the night of the raid; they both know Shane's been whispering in Antwon's ear. Vic doesn't think Shane would be part of hurting a young girl. Lem lists all the other things Shane's done. "We were all part of that," Vic says dismissively.

Lem reminds him of a very big change: the Strike Team is no longer around to keep Shane on a leash. Who knows what he's capable of alone? "He didn't do this," insists Vic, who is far from objective when it comes to his best friend. Lem is pissed. The only thing he can really do to vent his anger is slam the door.

"Oh, you knuckleheads make it way too easy!" Vic shouts triumphantly as he, Ronnie, Danny, and Julien happen upon a group of One-Niners playing basketball. He and Ronnie serve the injunctions and explain the ground rules. One guys can't believe it could be illegal to hang out with his brother. Julien asks if they're actually related. "Yeah, like we came outta the same vagina," the gangbanger snarks. I'm mildly impressed he knows the anatomical term. Julien shrugs that he doesn't make the rules.

Vic and Ronnie's next stop is a bar. A customer with dreadlocks punches someone in the face, then tells Vic that he's an undercover DEA agent. A likely story, but Vic puts him in cuffs so they can go check it out. Well, it turns out he was telling the truth. But Agent Hendricks can't or won't say why he's investigating the One-Niners. Monica presses the issue and gets a talking-to from Hendricks' handler about how federal cases take priority.

Vic indicates the bulletin boards full of One-Niner intel and says they know more about the gang. Monica offers to do the drug bust for the DEA so Hendricks can get close to Antwon. The handler, Lamberti, gives up some information of his own. The One-Niners have started trading stolen cars in exchange for heroin imported from El Salvador. The middleman is a Salvadoran named Spider.

Monica wonders why the Salvadorans would partner up with the One-Niners. Vic explains that Antwon brokered an alliance while he was doing time in Lompoc; their common enemy is Mexicans. Hendricks has been trying to find out for months where they stash the drugs. Monica has a plan: Locals bust the garage where Spider keeps stolen cars and convince him to give up the stash spot. Vic will round up Spider's family as leverage.

Before this goes further, Lamberti wants everyone to understand that he's in charge. Monica promises not to let him down.

In the clubhouse, Army tells Shane how he dealt with people like Antwon back in Iraq: "We'd wait 'til he was all tucked up in bed having a real nice dream, then we'd cluster-bomb his ass." That'd do the trick, but it's not exactly an option stateside. Shane reminds him they can't do anything until they find out where Antwon hid Angie's body.

Enter Vic and Ronnie. They tell Shane and Army the captain wants their help on the DEA bust. Shane bellyaches about not wanting to work with the feds. Officer Paula tells Vic that his nanny is in the lobby. Since when does he have one of those?

The nanny has a family emergency: her daughter went into labor a month early. She didn't know where else to bring Cassidy except the Barn. Vic's oldest looks sick and miserable, her face flushed. Vic introduces Cassidy to Monica. The captain tells Vic it's okay if he takes his daughter home; Shane can walk point on Spider. Vic will handle it after he calls the backup babysitter.

Antwon is none too happy about Vic's "bald cracker ass" ripping him off. Shane can't do anything about the injunctions; they're above his pay grade. However, he's happy to give Antwon a brick of China white. He tells him about Spider and advises him to hold off on any business dealings. Antwon asks him to keep someone named Verdice off the radar.

Shane calls Vic from outside Spider's garage. Vic gives him the go-ahead to "tear down the web" as Shane puts it. Vic himself takes the lead as they walk in. He spots a Duffel O' Guns and remarks that Spider is sending more than money home to El Salvador. They start checking car trunks and Shane finds a Duffel O' Cash. "Holy shit," Army breathes. Vic guesses it's about $100,000, lunch money compared to what Lem burned up. Vic calls it in.

Dutch and Claudette's latest homicide victim is Raine Powell, who worked at an electronics store. Claudette sees a pink chalk outline and asks, "What's this?" "What's it look like?" asks Scooby the uniform. He assures them he's not responsible. A witness was and he also moved the body. Dutch goes full Ichabod Crane.
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Raine is now behind a dumpster. There's a second chalk outline of where the woman's purse was.

Monica thanks Julien for his help at the community forum. She hopes he still believes in what he said, but she's open to him being honest about his feelings. Julien doesn't think the seizures are right: "You're guilty until proven innocent." Farmington residents can't afford lawyers to fight losing their cars. Monica suggests setting up a legal fund with some of the auction profits.

Lamberti interrupts to say they know where Verdice keeps the heroin. Monica tells Julien to find Danny; they can both ride with her.

Raine's friend says Raine didn't have any financial issues. Raine's boyfriend Bear couldn't have done this because he's a gentle giant. Another coworker reports that Raine had a Type A personality and was a stickler for the rule against employees parking in the store lot. Claudette wants to interview Bear AKA Cornelius.

Vic cautions everyone to keep an eye out for Verdice's dogs and shooters. Julien readies to pop the door with a halligan. Monica and Lamberti watch from the old Strike Team van. Unfortunately for everyone, the warehouse has been emptied. Lamberti blames the local yokels: "Somebody couldn't keep their mouth shut, which is why I don't work with people like you." Monica is sure nobody on the raiding team said anything. Lamberti refuses to let them near Spider again.

Vic, of course, doesn't listen. He pulls Spider out of the van and gives him 30 seconds to talk. It'd be such a shame if Spider's baby brother got deported. Spider tells him that Verdice has a secondary stash spot: a church. That'll buy you a one-way ticket on the old express bus to hell. Vic brings Spider back to the van, where Lamberti is bitching about having to pull Hendricks off the case.

Monica is suspicious about the drugs being moved and Angie's disappearance. Both were Vic's cases. For once, he's being honest when he swears he had nothing to do with it. Vic doesn't see Shane watching them from the doorway. Vic thinks they can salvage things; Lem is looking for the missing girl. Shane strolls out and is a little too nonchalant when he says cook houses move around a lot.

Vic tells Monica about the church. She'll see about getting a warrant. He thinks they should limit this raid to people they can trust: her, him, Shane, and Ronnie.

Dutch reports that Bear wasn't home, but he managed to snag Raine's diary. Claudette tells him about a San Antonio detective whose murder suspect, Kleavon, moved to Farmington last month. All his victims were young black women found in public places. Kleavon's sister lives near the store. Dutch pooh-poohs San Antonio's profile. Whoever killed Raine was a patient opportunist, not a thrill killer.

Claudette wonders why San Antonio PD suspects Kleavon of "killing everybody but Osama." They never found his prints or DNA on the victims. Kleavon insists Detective Huarez has it out for him; he may or may not have remarked on the guy's inability to satisfy his wife. How long will he be staying here? The limit in Texas was 12 hours.

The aptly-nicknamed Bear claims he was driving around by himself last night when his girlfriend was murdered. Dutch reads aloud from Raine's diary; she felt she was going places but wasn't sure about how Bear fit into her plans. She also suspected him of cheating with a girl named Janelle. Bear asks if Dutch saw the entry about his birthday gift to Raine: "What kinda grown-ass man does collages and kills his woman?"
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He doesn't see anything wrong with having snooped through his girlfriend's diary. Bear admits to being at Janelle's last night, "but it wasn't like that. We were in the bed, but the clothes were on." I've only heard that story on about 5,000 episodes of Jerry Springer. Dutch doesn't seem to believe that.

Monica arrives in the church just as they're finishing up a full-immersion baptism. She tells the reverend some of his congregants may be using the church as a way station for drugs, but is sure the reverend himself isn't involved. She shows him the mug shots of three One-Niners. The reverend says they're in the church kitchen making sandwiches. They volunteer every day and their questionable behavior is all in the past.

Monica appreciates that may be true, but One-Niners gathering in groups is now against the law. The reverend doesn't want her intruding on the house of God, but she's free to grab them up if they set foot outside. Ah, the old sanctuary play. Monica gives her word that the church will be treated with respect.

Army worries about what Antwon will do or say if Verdice gets arrested. He gives Verdice's car a warning honk. Vic and Ronnie pursue. Army panics, floors it, and ends up having a head-on collision with Verdice. He quietly threatens Verdice with death if he doesn't keep quiet. Vic wants to know just what the hell is going on. Army's answer is lame, along the lines of "I stopped him, right?" The reverend hears the commotion and comes out. He tells Monica to stay away from his church.

Dutch is still combing through Raine's diary for clues. Claudette thinks something is off about Kleavon. She asks her partner to come in with her and get a read on him. Dutch asks if it's all just a big coincidence that Kleavon was at so many crime scenes in Texas? He says it is. He supposedly left Texas because "I got sick of the Alamo."

Being new in town, Kleavon doesn't have a job or girlfriend yet. Dutch is curious what he does with all his free time. "People watch," Kleavon answers vaguely. Did he happen to pass by the store where Raine was murdered? Kleavon says no, barely blinking at the gory crime scene photos on the table. Dutch opines that it's "a classic sociopathic non-reaction." Neither of them are sure what they can use to trip him up. Dutch also has an alternate suspect: a coworker Raine lent her bingo winnings to.

Officer Paula asks if Dutch has seen Vic. She's been watching Cassidy, her shift is over, and the emergency babysitter never turned up. Vic isn't answering his cell phone. Dutch offers to call Corinne. Next we see of mother and daughter, Corinne is tucking Cassidy into a bed she made up on an ER consult room couch. She thanks Dutch for bringing her. Dutch reassures her that Vic didn't leave the kid totally alone; Officer Paula was with her. Corinne is still upset about Vic not calling her. Dutch understands how divorces can be. Not when kids are involved, you don't.

Dutch starts to leave, then doubles back to ask Corinne to dinner. She makes the excuse that she has no time between working, taking care of the kids, and trying to sell the house. Also, he works with Vic. Dutch doesn't think that's an issue because they barely see each other. I can't believe he's naive enough to be sure Vic won't care about him putting the moves on his ex-wife.

"I tried it with a cop once," says Corinne. Dutch tells her that he and Vic couldn't be more different. He sure ain't kidding about that. Corinne smiles. Dear God, is she actually charmed by him? Lem or, hell, even Ronnie I could understand.

Monica goes back to the church with a search warrant. The reverend refuses to let her in. Monica doesn't want to use force if she doesn't have to. Vic suggests going back at night, but that could give the good reverend time to flush the stash. Monica tells the search team to use extra caution; there are civilians inside. Stash spot or not, born-again Julien opposes the idea of breaking into a church. Ronnie smashes the glass on the front door with a halligan.

Another baptism is in progress. Vic chases one of the gangbangers through the sanctuary and tackles him right in front of the altar. The reverend preaches about his enemies stumbling and falling. A uniform reports that Julien and Danny caught the other two suspects. No drugs are found on the One-Niners. Monica's voice has a this-is-a-PR-nightmare edge to it as she declares, "We're gonna have to search the whole church and everyone in it."

Shane goes into the reverend's office with Army: "All this Fast and Furious shit, you're sending smoke signals to Vic and the captain." They need to find the heroin before anyone else. In the kitchen, Ronnie is concerned about the health code violations. Shane found a receipt for candles imported from El Salvador. When Vic smashes one of the candles, he discovers a tube of heroin.

Lem has a coroner's report on Angie's mom. He guesses the amount of heroin in her system would've cost $500. "Even a frat boy knows not to shoot that much poison," says Vic. Not to mention the woman barely had two nickels to rub together. Lem adds, "I'm connecting the dots and all I'm seeing is a picture of Shane with Antwon Mitchell." Their conference is interrupted by Scooby, who tells Vic that Dutch took Cassidy to the hospital.

When her ex shows up, Corinne is not a happy camper: "She was sick, you brought her to a police station?" Vic didn't have a choice; Carmen had a family emergency of her own and the backup sitter had a flat tire. He reminds her this is the first time something like this has happened. Even though she seems to think he's a terrible parent, Corinne lets Vic leave with Cassidy.

Raine's coworker reports people set up a shrine of teddy bears and flowers outside the store. Claudette, not in the mood for pleasantries, says, "Your boss found those order forms you've been changing." He's sure Raine didn't know about his side business selling XBOXes and DVD players. However, Raine wrote in her diary that she confronted him and was gonna tell their manager. Uniforms spotted blood in his car.

If the coworker tried to reason with Raine and things spun out of control, that's only second-degree murder. They just need to hear his side of things. Coworker offered her a cut of the profits, but Raine was "a self-righteous bitch" about it and he hates self-righteous bitches. Dutch, hopefully only playing the psychology angle, agrees that Raine had it coming.

Because of this confession, they have to let Kleavon go. Claudette remarks how odd it is to have a suspect but no victim. Well, no victims in California, at least. Dutch thought being on the D.A.'s bad side was bad, but his partner freezing him out is worse. "I can't believe you sold me out," says Claudette. Dutch, shockingly, has no answer to that.

Monica assigns Julien to desk duty for the next few days. If he disagrees with the seizure policy that much, he should consider transferring. Julien stands by his decision not to ransack a church. "There was heroin in the holy candles," Danny points out. That doesn't count for anything as far as Julien is concerned.

Vic offers Verdice witness protection if he flips on Antwon. And also, what did Shane and Army say when they pulled him out of the car? Verdice lies that he was told to get out and put his hands on his head.

"Dutchboy! Hero of the hour!" Vic shouts across the squadroom. Dutch tells him that Cassidy wanted her mom, as sick kids often do. Vic demands to know where does Dutch get off making Vic look like a bad father? Dutch doesn't think Vic needs help in that department. His scrawny neck is saved when Monica tells Vic she saw the tox report. She wants to talk to Lem.

Antwon is pissed that everything seems to be going wrong on Shane's watch; dirty cops used to be good for his business enterprises. "Seeing as you were misusing a house of the Lord, I'd say divine intervention," the Southerner says coolly.
Testify, Reverend Shane!
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Shane reminds Antwon that he and Army are the only thing standing between Antwon and Vic. Antwon scoffs that he doesn't need them. If the gangster kingpin doesn't let his protectors know what he's into, there's not much they can do.

Army freaks out about the possibility of Antwon dumping Angie's body in plain sight. "I didn't hear you complainin' about my leadership skills when I was gettin' you blown in that alley," says Shane. Things have gone well beyond what Army is comfortable with. Does Shane have a way to get them out of this?

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Shane vows to give Angie a proper Christian burial "and when the time is right, we shove a stick of dynamite up [Antwon's] ass." There goes Walton Goggins talking about explosives again.
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At a press conference, Monica presents the director of a low-income prenatal care clinic with a $10,000 donation, courtesy of the seizures. A reporter asks how the community feels about Monica invading a church. Vic defends his boss; they recovered 12 kilos of heroin from the place. Monica doesn't plan to seize the building because the reverend had no idea what was going on.

Another reporter asks if that justifies interrupting a baptism. "I'd interrupt my grandmother's funeral if it meant getting dangerous narcotics off the streets our children walk on," says the captain. She chuckles at them not to print that comment; her grandma is still alive and kicking in Tarzana.

Later, Monica speculates that if Angie's mom is dead, the girl might be too. Vic will find whoever did it. "When you do, ask about the leak at the warehouse today," says Monica. Vic argues there may not have been one. "Stop bullshitting me," Monica hisses. She trusts his estimation of Shane's character, but what about Army's? Vic doesn't want to start a witch hunt; he knows how it feels to be on the other end.

Monica picked him to head the gang squad because she knows he wants to help the seizures succeed. If Vic can't handle being under a microscope, she needs him to step down. Vic doesn't step aside; he steps up. Monica repeats, "Find the leak."

Army thinks he and Shane should approach things the way you approach a war zone, "where you can't tell the Iraqi insurgents from the Iraqi idiots." Lem suddenly appears from the shadows. He grabs Shane by his jacket, snarling, "You son of a bitch! She was 14!" Army tries to intervene and Lem easily knocks him on his ass.

Lem asks if Shane brought Angie to Antwon or just told him where she was. Shane tells him neither. They have a brief shoving match. "You telling me you're not in bed with Antwon Mitchell?" says Lem. Shane doesn't make an attempt to deny that, just swears he'd never rat out a kid.

"What happened to her, Shane?" Lem demands. "Dude, she was 14. She just wanted to get her mom clean. You tell me what you did!" He grabs Shane again, pushing him against the wall. Shane protests that he didn't do nothing. He couldn't hurt a kid; he's a daddy himself now.

"I know you. I know you're lying," says Lem. Shane looks terrified, as well he should. Not only is his former friend pissed off, Lem also has a few inches on him and probably outweighs him by a good 20 pounds, all of it muscle. Shane reiterates that he had nothing to do with Angie's disappearance and tells Lem to stay out of his face. "I lose the 1% of doubt I got, we'll be mixing it up again," Lem warns. A fight Shane will likely lose, unless he fights dirty.

Julien meets Edgar-veda for coffee. He says Monica only wants to hear opinions that match her own. "Agendas have a way of creating tunnel vision," agrees Edgar-veda, an expert on that particular subject. Julien wants the councilman's help in stopping Monica. Edgar-veda reminds Julien of how he recanted his statement when the ex-captain tried to bring down Vic. "I can handle it," Julien insists, "I'm a different man now."

Vic and Ronnie discuss the garage sting in the clubhouse. Lem arrives, curious why Vic wanted to see him. Vic asks what Lem was thinking going after Shane. They worked together for 3 years, so he should be well aware of the blond's hot head. Lem thinks it's just typical for Shane to run tattling to his best friend. Vic thought he, Lem, and Ronnie had agreed to keep their suspicions to themselves.

Lem asks if Vic is in on this. "I wanna bring down Antwon and find that girl as much as you do," Vic replies honestly. Lem challenges, "Prove it." He wants to rejoin the band. But for that to happen, he has to play by Vic's rules. "Oh, you mean I agree to protect Shane like always, right?" Lem guesses.

Ronnie cues up the VCR. "Shane didn't tell me you went after him. I saw it," Vic explains. On the screen, Army says, "Lem's one crazy-ass white boy." Does he know about them and Antwon? Shane indicates it's nothing that Lem can actually prove: "I'll handle him. You just have to trust me. I'll handle all this shit." That sounds vaguely ominous.

When the tape ends, Lem looks stunned and hurt. "It's not about protecting Shane anymore," says Vic, "It's about stopping him." End of episode.

Friday, March 31, 2017

"Tar Baby" That Is, the Drug Kind (Episode 4.5)

Previously on: Edgar-veda started having an affair with a prostitute named Sara. Dutch struck a deal with the D.A.'s office to get put back on "real" cases. Monica kicked off a controversial asset forfeiture plan. Shane is most definitely in bed with Antwon.

Speaking of in bed, we open with Edgar-veda and Sara having rough sex. She's playing the role of a rape victim at his gross request. Afterward, they make another appointment for Thursday. In lieu of $600, he gives her an expensive handbag from Neiman's. Sara seems pleased: "I have the perfect pair of shoes to go with this. From now on, though, get a gift receipt."

Sara tells him there's nothing wrong with what they're doing as consenting adults, even though prostitution itself is illegal: "That energy has to come out." I'm guessing Edgar-veda told her some story about how his wife doesn't have sex with him anymore. He tells her he's not there for small talk.

At a large church packed to the rafter, Monica hosts a town-hall meeting about the seizure plan. A man questions whether Monica can really change things: "All these years, I've heard a lotta talkin' and all I see is more sidewalk chalkin'." Monica agrees that for every head you cut off the Hydra, three more grow and: "It's because the culture of wealth that's been created around the sale of drugs has sent a very clear message to our kids: 'Now Hiring.'"

As part of her plan to better the community, Monica will have more officers patrol areas known for drug trafficking and expand after-school programs. Kids with positive things to do and places to go are less likely to get involved with gangs. She'll also send officers to schools for anti-drug education. She's sure these things will work, but the adults in the community need to be patient.

Monica explains that property bought with drug profits will be seized and sold at auction; the proceeds will go to support community programs and the crime victims' fund. The dealers "need to pay the bill for all the pain and suffering that they've caused." I see one face in the crowd who won't be happy about that: Antwon.

Billings and Vic start working the case of Romeo Barnes, who was shot dead near a methadone clinic. A clinic worker saw Romeo and a black woman arguing with another black man; the second black man shot Romeo and rode away on a motorcycle.
One of these guys, maybe?
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The clinic worker is otherwise unhelpful. He didn't actually see the shooting and can't identify the guy on the bike or the woman. He doesn't know Romeo either.

A woman stands up and thanks Monica, "God bless you for crackin' down on these gangsters so my kids can go to school one day without being afraid of getting shot." The crowd cheers and claps. Antwon is sure asset forfeiture will create a bigger problem; the racist white po-lice "want to take the black and the brown man's property if they think he's up to no good."

Monica lets the crowd know exactly what his words are worth: "Mr. Mitchell is a convicted felon who spent 13 years in prison for distributing crack cocaine." Antwon asks whether Monica believes in rehabilitation. In his case, Monica wouldn't because his behavior hasn't changed. Antwon argues, "The police aren't a jury of our peers."

At this, Julien stands up. He talks about growing up in Farmington; it really wasn't a bad neighborhood until the crack epidemic started in 1984. It quickly turned into the crime-infested hellhole we all know. Julien became a police officer to help make the community safe again: "With God's help and your support, law enforcement is a solution. We are not the problem." Someone in the crowd calls Julien a sellout. Nice.

Edgar-veda, who snuck in the back, also makes a speech. When a person is arrested, they're innocent until proven guilty. The seizure policy reverses that idea; it falls on you to prove that you didn't buy your house with drug money: "There has been abuse and corruption in nearly every city that this policy has been tried." He won't support it without lots of regulations. Monica thinks he's trying to fix something that ain't broke, as we say down South. Edgar-veda disagrees and the crowd claps loudly.

After the meeting, Monica tells Edgar-veda it was a dick move to put her on stage under the pretext that he was supporting her and then undermining her. Edgar-veda accuses her of "using the boogeyman to ride roughshod over people's rights." He's now vice-chairman of the police committee and will be overseeing the implementation of the seizures. They'll be fine if Monica learns to do what he says.

Vic has learned that Romeo did time for dealing crack and assault, but hasn't been arrested in 10 years. "Doesn't sound like he got shot for minding his own business," says Monica. She suggests bringing Shane in because he works Vice and could help them get Antwon. Vic says Antwon wouldn't mess with anyone this low on the totem pole. And what Monica doesn't know is that Shane won't help them take down Antwon anyway. Maybe now would be a good time for Vic to tell Monica about his suspicions?

Lem comes into the Barn with a girl in her early teens. "New girlfriend?" jokes Vic. Lem scoffs, "I got socks older than her." She might know something about the murder outside the methadone clinic. Monica asks if the girl is reliable. Lem knows Angie pretty well; he busts her every few weeks for petty shoplifting. Angie isn't a bad kid, though: "She's just trying to keep her and her mom fed."

In the observation room, Lem sets the girl up with a can of Coke and a chocolate bar. Angie says Romeo didn't use anymore; he was her mom's NA sponsor. Mom's old drug dealer has been trying to get her to buy heroin again. Romeo told the dealer to leave Mom alone.

Angie doesn't know the dealer's name, just that "he rides a loud-ass motorcycle." She thinks her mom is probably out prostituting herself to get more drug money. Vic asks if she could show them where Mom usually does business. "Can I get some Starbursts first?" she asks shyly. A kid after Lem's heart.

Shane isn't happy that he's being stuck on the methadone case. Vic is like "well, you're the one who's tapped into Vice." Before that, Vic has something to show his best friend. He and Ronnie "borrowed" a Garage Sting camera for personal use. "Ladies and gentlemen, the man who put the pimp in pimp juice," says Ronnie as he fires up the VCR.

On the tape, Dutch is driving around with a black woman riding shotgun. Belle is a friend of Claudette's and the two are on a blind date. Dutch apologizes for turning the air-conditioning up so high: "I guess colder climes are hardwired into my Northern European DNA." Vic, Ronnie, Shane, and Army bust out laughing.

Dutch drops Belle off at her place and suggests they go out again over the weekend. Belle can't; she'll be in Kansas City. Dutch hands her a business card and says, "Call me when you get back." He awkwardly kisses her on the cheek. As he drives away, Dutch starts singing "Hungry Like the Wolf" very off-key. Shane cackles like a hyena. Ronnie shuts off the VCR.

Vic asks if Shane and Army know of any heroin dealers who like to hang around the methadone clinic on Seymour; he and Ronnie are going off in search of a "junkie mom who witnessed the shooting." Shane takes Vic's question to Antwon, who predictably replies, "Street soldiers are a little below my need-to-know." One of Antwon's boys knows that Freebo has a riceburner...and a temper.

Antwon reminds Shane that his job is to keep Antwon's friends out of jail. "He grudge-whacked a drug counselor. Now that shit ain't right," says Shane. He'll make sure the case doesn't go any farther up the food chain. Antwon's friend will look around for him. "Good boy. Holla," Shane says as he leaves.

Monica assigns Claudette and Dutch to the murder of a 65-year-old woman who was shot during a home invasion. She wants them to run it through Vic because it looks gang-related. Claudette can't believe the captain is confiscating Maurice's house over three pot plants. Monica reminds her that Maurice dealt out of his house. She suggests they go someplace for some private girl-talk.

Upstairs in the task force room, Monica tells Claudette, "Debate's fine. Insubordination isn't." Claudette knows the D.A. doesn't assign cases any more than Monica can assign a prosecutor. Why were she and Dutch put on Maurice's investigation? The detective in her wonders who benefits from seizing a nobody's house. "Maybe the detective in you should get down to your assigned crime scene before a reprimand hits your desk," Monica counters.

Even though it was called in as a home invasion, Danny didn't find any sign of forced entry. The victim's daughter picked up her dad at the library and they came home to find her mom dead on the floor. When she took her dad to the library, she saw a car full of Mexican kids who looked like gangbangers parked across the street.

The victim's husband sinks into a chair. "Daddy, are you okay?" frets the daughter, "We have to get him to a hospital. He's got heart problems." Danny and Julien offer to drive them to Mission Cross. Wouldn't an ambulance be a better idea?

Monica, Vic, Lem, and Angie find Angie's mom Hoda in a junkie/whore hotel. I can't tell if she's high or starting to withdraw. Monica takes the girl outside and asks gently, "Do you have other family that you go to when she's like this?" "She's like this all the time," Angie replies, "Someone's gotta look out for her." The last time she tried to get Mom into rehab, she was told there was a six-month waiting list. Monica thinks she might be able to grease the wheels.

Vic and Lem sit on either side of Mom's bed. Not advisable in a place like that. Vic asks where Hoda scores her drugs, claiming he has "a sick friend." "I can take me some grey dick," Hoda slurs, reaching for Vic's belt. He and Lem hurriedly jump off the bed. Hoda's in no shape to remember the address, but Angie knows where to go: a cul-de-sac on Hoover.

I'll be surprised if Lem doesn't end up offering to take Angie in. This episode reminds me a lot of something that happened on Southland. Sammy developed a soft spot for/mentor relationship with Janilla, a young girl who witnessed a gang murder and later decided she wanted to be a Police Explorer. Things didn't work out so well for Janilla; her grandmother was shot and she ended up having to go into Witness Protection. Let's hope it goes differently for Angie.

Lem and Vic scope out the house from afar. The drug den has reinforced steel doors and blackout windows. They don't see heavy traffic (at least not yet), but there are two spotters on the lawn. Vic wants to call Monica for a warrant. Lem gets territorial: "This is my tip." Vic points out that he doesn't work Farmington anymore.

Lem thinks it's unfair that Shane got to come back to the Barn. "Having you there is gonna drive him further away," says Vic. They have to keep Shane close and Lem knows why. Vic appreciates all the help Lem's given him recently from his juvie connections. He unnecessarily jogs Lem's memory about the bad blood between him and Shane.

Claudette knows there have been a lot of home invasions in the elderly woman's neighborhood recently. Dutch calls out to her from the bedroom; he finds it curious that the victim's open jewelry box appears untouched. Claudette guesses the burglars could've panicked and left after shooting her. She's seen something like that happen before when two crackheads attempted to steal an 80-year-old's birdbath.

Dutch thinks something is odd about the victim's family. Vic still wants to check with the Byz Lats; the crime happened on their turf. Dutch is going back over witness statements and police reports from similar incidents. Vic tells him to re-canvass. Dutch snipes that he's run murder investigations before. "Just attack it. Like you're hungry. Like the wolf," says Vic. Dutch looks puzzled by that.

Monica holds a briefing about the upcoming drug raid. "One of the spotters calls himself TEC-9, so we can assume the firepower lives up to the name," says Vic. Monica tells everyone to keep an eye out for Freebo and his motorcycle.

Ronnie inquires why they aren't serving a high-risk warrant at night like they usually do. "The bad guys have imbedded themselves in a residential area where there's a lotta kids," Monica explains. It's less of a risk to go in during school hours. She adds, "This will be a success if and only if every one of you comes back in one piece and no civilians are hurt."
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In the parking lot, Vic assigns Shane to go in with him. Army will be with Lem and Ronnie. Army knows the block is part of Antwon's business and wants to give him a heads-up. Shane is about to start dialing when Monica tells him, "No cell phones." Shane lies that he was just gonna call his wife. Vic barks at him to get in the truck.

At the house, Vic sneaks up behind one of the spotters. Ronnie tackles the other one. SWAT gets the front door open and Vic tosses in a flash-bang grenade. Lem's group goes in another door and Lem stops a guy from sneaking out a window. There's a veritable arsenal in a locked closet. "I wish we had this kinda shit in Iraq," Army comments.

Vic finds a brick of heroin in a shoebox (not a very original hiding place). He offers a deal to the spotters: Whoever gives up Freebo's real name won't be facing 20 years in Pelican Bay. One of them quietly says Freebo AKA Freddie Bokamp just left. The guy must've done the informant dance before because he asks to be taken to jail with the rest of the crew.

Jesse, a uniform, tells Monica there's a strong chemical odor coming from the house, possibly ether. Monica calls in HAZMAT. Vic has a real name on Freebo, "but pulling a new warrant takes time." In light of the HAZMAT situation, Monica wants to evacuate the block.

One man refuses to leave because his young son has pneumonia. Danny tells him the area is unsafe and he doesn't have a choice. Julien picks up the blanket-wrapped boy, saying they can drive father and son to a hospital. Dad gets belligerent and has to be restrained by other officers.

Claudette asks Donna if her mom had any enemies. "She was my stepmother," Donna corrects. Her mom's been dead for 9 years; she and Dad found her in the same room as they found Margo today. Her mom's cause of death was a stroke. Dutch wonders why the thieves only took Margo's jewelry. Donna gets evasive; she wants to go back to the hospital to sit with her dad.

At the Barn, Vic lets Monica know they didn't find Freebo during the evacuation. He learns from his informant that Freebo lives with his twin brother Weebo. On the way downstairs, Vic passes Edgar-veda: "Press conference hasn't started yet. Still got time to figure out how to take credit for all this."

Edgar-veda compliments Monica on the raid. He then asks why she didn't arrange for emergency shelter for the block's honest residents. Monica didn't know there'd be a meth lab or that they'd have to evacuate. What he calls a snafu, she calls the biggest drug bust in 10 years.

The gun used in the supposed home invasion was a .38; matching ammo was found in the husband's closet but no gun. None of the neighbors confirmed the stepdaughter's story about a car full of gangbangers. Dutch doesn't think the husband did it. "What was in it for Daddy's little girl?" Claudette wonders.

Upstairs, she asks Warren where he keeps his gun. He replies it's in the bedroom closet but is never loaded. If that's true, why can't they find it? Did Margo have any problems with Donna? Was Donna upset that Margo wanted to move out of state with him?

Warren says there was another break-in a few weeks ago; he didn't report it to the police or tell his daughter. He didn't want her to worry. Supposedly, the burglar stole his gun.

A.D.A. Insardi drops off a subpoena. Monica asks about Maurice's case. Insardi doesn't know all the details because she doesn't have the file in front of her. Monica asks if there's someone she can call; they can't seize the house if it gets kicked down to a misdemeanor. Insardi then claims she's not at liberty to discuss it.

Antwon tells Shane he's got some 'splaining to do. Shane didn't know that was Antwon's drug house or that Vic would be raiding it until it was too late. It also wasn't smart of Freebo to kill someone in front of witnesses; Antwon better hope Shane is the one who brings him in. Antwon thinks they should get together and work on their communication.

"Where the hell is Shane?" Vic asks as their suspects come out of the house. Lem looks out the window, then at the mug shots in his lap. Confused, he asks, "Which one's Weebo and which one's Freebo?" The twins mount their riceburners. Vic worries they could take off different directions; the cops only have the one car.

Before they can ride off, Vic and Lem get out of the car. The twins start shooting at them. Lem hits one of them and calls in the officer-involved shooting. "Where the hell have you been?" he snaps when Shane arrives. Shane asks what happened. Gee, what does it look like?

Monica tells Claudette she stopped the seizure paperwork on Maurice's house. Maurice was set to testify for the defense in a murder trial and the D.A. had the agenda of ruining his credibility. "You smelled horseshit, turns out there was a pony in the Barn," Monica quips.

Freebo won't talk to Vic; he's too upset about Weebo's death. Vic asks Monica to talk to Internal Affairs about the officer-involved shooting. He knows she's not Lem's supervisor, but Lem's CI broke the case. Monica has the same first question that Lem's boss will: Where was their backup? Vic lies that Shane got stuck in traffic. The twins were about to flee and they didn't know which was which.

Vic tells Freebo that they have him for killing Romeo: "We go for special circumstances, you'll be seeing your brother again before you know it." "Don't talk like that!" Freebo spits, "That boy was my heart!" Vic asks about Antwon; Freebo supposedly doesn't know him. Shane watches anxiously from the observation room. He hurriedly turns off the TV as Dutch and Claudette bring in Donna.

On a different TV, there's a Latino sitting by himself. Dutch asks if he was parked outside the house. Donna is positive he was the driver. "That man's a police officer," Dutch informs her, "He was on patrol with his partner when you shot your stepmother." Donna vehemently denies it.

Dutch thinks she was trying to recapture the last time it was just the two of them and Dad needed her: the day her mom died. They know Warren is lying and will be charged as an accessory after the fact if he keeps it up. Donna sits down heavily and says, "If he moved to Arizona, he'd be dead in 6 months." She cooks, she cleans, she drives him to doctor's appointments, and makes sure he takes all 17 of his medications every day. Margo didn't care about Warren the way Donna's mom did.

Donna and Margo were arguing about the move. When her stepmom turned around, Donna shot her in the back. She threw away the gun and her stepmom's jewelry.

In the squadroom, Monica congratulates everyone involved in the raid. They'll all be getting commendation letters. She then asks if Danny and Julien have anything to add about the dad they drove to the hospital. They don't. Monica will make sure to tell the city attorney that Dad's impending lawsuit is meritless.

Julien thinks they shouldn't be acting like they just won the big game. That dad was perfectly reasonable until they tried to drag him out of his home. Never mind that it was a safety issue, what with the meth lab and all. Danny says only thugs profit from police being turned into the enemy. Amen, sister.

Julien asks why they aren't taking houses from drug lawyers and bankers who wash dirty money. "If you think this is such a rotten idea, then why'd you help the captain sell it on that panel?" Danny fires back.

Claudette wonders why she's out of the D.A.'s doghouse. She didn't apologize and they don't usually admit when they're wrong. She tells him what she knows about Maurice and how that could explain the attitude adjustment. Claudette asks flat out if Dutch offered Insardi any favors. Dutch admits he did; somebody needed to make nice-nice. Unbeknownst to them, Monica is watching the whole thing unfold on CCTV.

Claudette says it wasn't his deal to make; they're partners. "I wasn't gonna sit on my hands and watch you wreck your career and mine along with it," Dutch says. Claudette needs to accept losing the fight. She storms out.

Monica confronts Insardi about what she did to Dutch and Claudette: "You do not wanna mess with my people again." You really don't, lady; she'll turn your dog into a coat. Will Insardi's office be working with the police or against them? "Together," Insardi replies. There's the right answer.

Julien tells Claudette how he feels about the seizures. Can she help out with her seniority? Claudette doubts it; her opinion doesn't seem to count for much. Julien should use his voice and opinion himself.

"I'm getting my nuts twisted by IAD on account of you," Lem tells Shane. Well, that can't be good for his condition. Army pipes up and Lem tells him to stay out of it. Shane doesn't think he and Lem have anything to say to each other. Vic hisses at them to cool it; Monica's coming down the hall.

Monica has bad news: Angie's mom was just found dead from an overdose. Social Services can't find the kid and it's possible she doesn't even know yet. Lem and Vic leave to find her.

Antwon angrily slams a lockbox shut. Shane doesn't get why he's so pissed; there's no roads leading back to him. Antwon asks if Shane knows how much product and manpower he lost. "If you'd kept me in the loop about your tar castles, then maybe I coulda kept an eye out for you, homey," Shane retorts.

That was the wrong thing to say. Antwon's goons wrestle Shane and Army to the ground. "Get his piece," Antwon instructs. Halpern kicks Shane a few times. "I don't get played and I ain't your homey," growls Antwon, now armed with both their guns. His guys saw them at the raid. "So how you gonna tell me now there was nothing that you could do? You think you was ever makin' the rules around here?"

Antwon cocks the gun. "You're not stupid enough to bring that kinda heat down on your ass," Shane challenges. Some guys bring in Angie; she's crying and has duct tape over her mouth. Antwon talked to her mom and "It's amazing what a bitch'll give up for a little rush. Or in this case, a big rush." "Jesus, you killed her mother," Shane realizes.

"This is the little ho that gave up my block," Antwon goes on. Army protests that she's a kid. Antwon stuffs one of their business cards in Angie's pocket and lays out the story. Shane and Army were trying to bring her to foster care, but Angie didn't want to go. She offered them oral sex in exchange for going free, then threatened to tell Monica. Antwon shoots Angie with both cops' guns. Oh sweet Jesus, no.

The gangster kingpin states the obvious: If Angie's body is ever found, Shane and Army are in huge trouble. Antwon rolls Shane over and puts a giant Timberland boot across his neck: "From now on, I say, 'Suck my dick,' you say, 'You want me to lick your balls, Daddy?'" Point made, he backs off and lets Shane breathe. Poor Angie. I hope she has some relative somewhere who'll raise holy hell looking for her. End of episode.