Chicago Warriors: Domestic Problems

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"Pete, the Captain wants to see you in his office," said Mac. "What's up?" I asked.  "I don't know, he just told me to send you in when you reported for your shift tonight. I don't have a clue." "Probably wants to give me a raise," I joked.

"I doubt it," Mac replied, "but see me when you're done in there...I'm curious."

"Will do." I knocked out the door and heard Steele's voice from inside, "Enter!"
I walked in and stood in front of the Watch Commander's desk. It's never a good idea to assume that your boss wants you to sit and relax. This is his domain, his platform for power and control. "Evnin' wanted to see me?"

"Hi Shannon, yes I did. C'mon in and shut the door behind you."

I did as instructed.
"Have a seat. The reason that I wanted to talk with you is so that I can pass on some information that came from the States Attorney's office today. They spoke with the District Commander this afternoon, who then passed on the information to me so that you could be informed before you read it in the morning papers."

"Is it about The Hammer"" I asked.
"Yeah, apparently he pled out today rather than go to trial. I guess he thought his chances were better that way. He copped a plea to a reduced charge of attempted manslaughter, and the State agreed to drop the gun and drug counts against him. The judge gave him eighteen years in the joint. You okay with that Shannon?"

I thought about it for a moment. Rosato had tried to kill me and had taken time to plan it, to include buying a gun that he thought wouldn't be able to be traced. That alone made it attempted murder. But on the other hand, eighteen years is a long time. For a guy like Sal, being cooped up with people that he despised, and maybe even put a few of them in jail himself, the sentence was fair. "I'm good with it Captain."

"I'm glad to hear that," he said. "You know I've never discussed it with you, but I admire the way that you do your job. I've never heard a bad word about you from any of your colleagues or the public. I still can't understand what Rosato had against you, but I'm glad that he's gone and that you're not. You're a good man Shannon; an inspiration to a lot of your fellow officers. Keep up the good work!"

"Thank you sir."
"That's all I've got, hit the street Shannon."
"Yes sir."

I walked out of his office feeling pretty good about what was said in there. Steele threw around compliments like manhole covers-which meant rarely, if ever. To have him praise me was special. How could I feel bad now, especially when the good news involved justice being served? I was energized now-better let Mac know. I walked over to the Desk, "Hey Mac."

"How did it go in there Pete, any problems?"
"No. He was relating the news to me from the court today about Rosato."

"What happened, did they set a trial date?" Mac asked.
"No, he pled out to attempted manslaughter...judge gave him eighteen years."

"Man, that's going to kill him, he'll be a target in there for sure."

"I know-it's going to be rough on him. Strange thing though...I just feel compelled to pray for him; he's still a fellow human being. He just let Satan take over."
Mac got up to place a file on the review man's desk.

"Pete you're a good man. And you're right; we do need to pray for him. One other thing while I've got you in here. Sgt. Castro on days told me that he got wind that DEA apparently made their case on that character that raped Marilyn. They may take him down very shortly."
"Should I tell her?" I asked.

"No, if she knows she may change her behavior in the event that he contacts her. We'll let her know when it's about to go down."

"Okay Mac."
"Better hit the street now Pete, your partner wandered in here a few minutes ago looking for you."
I walked out to the lot to our unmarked car. Marilyn was patiently waiting-reading the Bible. I opened the car door and sat down. She looked over at me and said, "Everything okay, seems like you were with the boss for a good while."

"It's all good, Captain said Rosato copped a plea today and got eighteen years. He just wanted me to know before I read it in the papers in the morning."

"Whew...I'm relieved. For some reason I was thinking that they wanted to split us up or something."

I laughed... "You're not getting rid of me that easy lady, you're stuck with me for a long time."

"Great!" she said. "I'm glad that there's not going to be a trial Pete. I just want that part of our history to fade away."

"Me too...I think this gives me some closure with him admitting his guilt."
"It was a double header." she said. "Didn't his girlfriend plead guilty on the DUI case?"
"Yep-The Hammer and his girlfriend are old news."
"Amen," Marilyn offered.

"Did you check everything...are we ready to roll?" I asked.
"Yep, let's hit it."

I put it in gear and rolled out onto 63rd Street. "Hey, I've never seen you reading the Bible before... Something new?"

Marilyn leaned over the back seat and tucked the book into her gear bag. "Yes, it is something new. The past few weeks I've felt such a strong urge to read the Bible... I'm ashamed to admit that other than the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, I haven't read it."
"Don't feel bad," I said, "lots of folks haven't even read the gospels."

"I know. But I'll tell you something Pete...I'm excited about reading everything about our faith. I've made a promise to myself to read it from cover to cover. In fact, that's why I've started to carry it around with me-any down time that I have is going to be spent reading."
I turned south on Pulaski while we continued to discuss the Bible. "Just so you know Marilyn... that cover to cover reading will only make you hungry for more. I've been there."

"That's fine with me," she said, "the more the better."
"Pete, check that out," said Marilyn as we approached 71st and Pulaski.

"What is it?'
She pointed over in the direction of the K-Mart parking lot. "It looks like we've got some kind of disturbance...a guy and a gal in some kind of argument."
I turned into the lot and hit them briefly with the spotlight just to give them a clue as to who we were. I parked our unit so that our headlights illuminated them as they stood next to an old beater. We got out of our car and approached them.

"Police Officers!" said Marilyn. "What seems to be the problem here?"
They were two people in their late 50's or early 60's. He was scraggily looking; thin with a beard and wearing a White Sox hat. She was plump and wearing a housecoat and slippers; she was probably six inches shorter than he was.
The woman spoke first. "Officers it's okay. I'm just trying to get my husband home before he gets in trouble."
"Whose car is that?" I asked.

"That ours sir," said the woman. "I've been driving around looking for him. He needs to come home with me before he spends all of his paycheck."

Marilyn turned to the man who had obviously been drinking. "Sir have you been drinking tonight?"

"Yeah, can't a man have a drink without everybody gettin' on his case about it?"

The wife spoke up, "Officer he does this all the time. He gets drunk on pay day and if I don't get him home in time he's spent almost all of it. I don't have enough money to pay the rent and buy groceries. I've got two grandkids livin' with me that my daughter left me with sose she could run off with some man. I can't have him spendin' all of that check on booze."

"Is she right sir?" asked Marilyn, "are you spending all of your money on booze?"

He looked like he was getting angry now. "It's my damn money and I'll spend it any way I want."

"It ain't his money Officers, it's all of ours. I can't work; I have to watch the kids every day."

I felt sorry for the woman; she was beholden to her husband for her welfare and that of the grandkids. "What would you like us to do ma'am?" I asked.

"Not much you can do sir, I realize that. Can you just make him go home with me?"

Marilyn went up to the guy and said, "Let me see some identification sir!"
"What for?" he asked.

"I'm telling you that I want to see some identification-now!"

Marilyn got right up in the guy's face. It was a risky tactic, standing directly in front of someone, but most times it causes them to recognize that you're in control and won't tolerate any nonsense.

"Okay, okay," he said. He reached into his pocket and pulled out his wallet. "I don't have no license anymore, you guys took it when I was driving drunk one night." He fumbled through it until he came up with a work ID and handed it over to Marilyn.

"Is that all you have for identification sir?"
"Pretty much..."

Marilyn took the wallet from him and did a cursory look through the contents and then handed it to the man's wife. She wrote down the man's name and address, and then took him by the arm over by our vehicle.

"Listen to me good...these are your choices. You can either go home peacefully with your wife right now, or I will lock you up for drunk and disorderly."

The man began to protest. "Hey...what...who am I bein' disorderly to?

"Quiet!" Marilyn commanded. "I'm not about to debate you on this-what's it going to be? Do you want to go home with your wife, or go to jail?"

"Man, that ain't much of a choice... I'll go home."
"Good," said Marilyn, "but let me tell you something. If your wife calls the police and tells us that you went back out here tonight, I'll be over to lock you up so fast that your head will spin. Do you understand me?"

He was beginning to get the message and lost some of his bravado. "Yeah, hey I don't mean to hurt nobody. I just need to get a drink at the end of the week. I'm a hard worker Officer."

"I bet you are, but it's time to go home now. Go on and get in the car. Remember, no trouble."

The man walked over to the old car and got in the passenger side. I followed him and closed the door after him, glancing in the backseat as I did. I spotted two little blond haired kids asleep on the seat. They couldn't have been more than five years old. The wife got in behind the wheel.

"Thank you officers; God bless you both."
They pulled out of the lot headed toward home. "Nice job on that partner," I said to Marilyn.

"Thanks Pete. How sad of an existence is that? And those two little kids... I need to pray for that woman, her life must be unbearable at times."

"I agree; she's a saint to have to put up with him and a daughter on drugs who abandoned two innocent little babies."

We got back in our car and resumed patrol, neither one of us saying too much. Incidents like we just encountered have a tendency to snap you back in, to put lots of things in perspective-especially how blessed you are. The Teacher just took Marilyn and I to school...thank you Lord.

Next: Gary's Last Stand
Previous: Joe and Marilyn

John Wills spent 2 years in the U.S. Army before serving 12 years with the Chicago Police Department (CPD). He left the CPD to become an FBI Special Agent, working organized crime, violent crime, and drugs.  John Wills is an author of Chicago Warriors: Midnight Battles in the Windy City published by

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