Very little information changed hands the first time I met the FBI agent, and since I had only weeks prior started working at the newspaper, it all seemed serendipitous: here I was, in my early 20’s, with a Pulitzer prize-winning story falling in my lap.
Hod was building our trust, casing the joint, (add any number of other crime show clichés you might like to apply here). As he left, he asked us to please not tell anyone about the investigation. It seemed a fair trade to avoid search and seizure. I was lucky I didn’t have a seizure from having a detective in the apartment. Fear of authority, people, it’s a real thing.
It was about a week before we heard from Hod again, this time with a side kick. Having grown accustomed to keeping the place fumigated with Lysol you would think my paranoia level would be manageable, but not so much.
On this visit they got right to the point: Our neighbor, Eddie, our new chorizo friend, was wanted for a felony and they were in the process of mapping out his comings and goings (as well as ours), to determine where and when to safely bring him in.
In less than a week Hod returned, this time accompanied by a squad car. He wanted to tie up a few loose ends and put our minds at ease with the news that they had apprehended Gabrial Ornez in connection with the murder of a teenage girl. Hod was high on case-closure hormones and nervously told us some stuff he probably shouldn’t have, the next evening’s newspaper filled in the rest of the felonious details.
In 1977, a teenage girl was shot and killed while innocently walking by a NJ Jewelry store during an attempted armed robbery. The shooter went on the lam for almost 10 years, building a life as a con man. He told us he imported cheese, with the occasional chorizo thrown in.
Response to the challenge cliffhanger.