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A Paid Snitch


Detective Wilfredo Cruz had a paid snitch in the back seat of his unmarked cruiser. He decided to look down every angle to help get some teeth into the murders. Someone had to say something, and for a few dollars, a snitch would spill his guts.

“You gonna talk to me?” Cruz asked.

“I don't know shit,” said the heavy set snitch. “I told that private-eye dude that this is shit to me. You can pay me all the money in the world, and I still don't know shit.”

Cruz slowed the car and turned around. He kept going up and down State Street so the block could see the snitch riding along. The snitch actually flinched every time someone looked in.

“Money may not make you talk,” Cruz started. “But your reputation is going to look like shit.”

The heavy set snitch said nothing as his dark face somehow reddened. Cruz drove up in down the street in cold silence. He figured he'd stay quiet for about an hour no matter what chubby does or says. Nervous situations always made snitches talk in the past. That was the tactic Cruz decided to take. He would remain silent for an hour no matter what. Even if the snitch gave him what he wanted, he would not react or reply.

By the detective's account, chubby was indeed burning bridges while being noticed in a police cruiser. If he knew anything about the murders he'd certainly snitch, but the longer he drove up and down the street the quicker his credibility would crash.

“You can't do this to me,” he stuttered.

Cruz ignored his passenger.

“Hey man, I would have told you already!”

The detective just drove.

“You can get me killed.”

Still silent.

“I'm a fat black guy with no friends,” said the snitch. “I'm lazy and look for different ways to make money legally. Driving me around is cutting me down to shit. You can't do that to me. I ain't got nothing else.”

Detective Wilfredo Cruz wasn't a veteran investigator of the old school. He was all new school and he knew when enough was enough so he pulled the cruiser over.

“Listen chubby,” he said as he turned to face the snitch. “I don't care how you make money, and I don't care about your reputation. In my book you're just a piece of shit with no prospects. I don't care if you're life is in danger. The way you live I don't think you really have that long to live anyways. So if you wanna live another day, just talk to me.”

“It's too late for that now,” said the snitch. “These people saw me in your car and that's it for me.”

“I can get you out of this mess.”


“You gonna tell me what you know?”

“I just want to know how you're gonna get me out of this mess,” he said as he watched another pedestrian stare into the cruiser. “How are you going to get me out of this shit?”

“I'm sure something came your way,” said the detective. “You always have your ears hanging out. That's how you make a living. All the cops downtown know who to call when they need a snitch.”

The snitch frowned.

“Play ball with me.”

“I don't know anything about the murders,” said the snitch. “But I promise if something comes up, you'll be the first person I call. I swear to God.”

The detective thought about that proposal for a moment. He just looked at the snitch and twitched his lips. To have a greedy pair of eyes out on the street might prove useful. He thought about it as the fat snitch said nothing.

“I'm going trust that you will get to me if you hear something,” said the detective. “Don't disappoint me.”

The Snitch sighed.

“Okay, we got a deal,” said the detective.

“That's not going to get me out of this shit,” said the snitch.

Cruz smiled.

The unmarked cruiser pulled toward a crowd near a bus stop and the detective quickly jumped out. He walked around the back of the car and yanked the snitch out of the passenger rear side.

“Listen you piece of shit!” shouted the detective. “I don't know why you're not giving me his name. He has no leverage on you and I can pick him up as soon as I get a name!”

The snitch was confused.

“Tell me his name!” shouted the detective as he punched the snitch in the jaw. “Tell me his damn name!”

Naturally there was no pop to the punch, but the people looking on had no idea.

“He's burning his own customers with fake dime bags and then firing the profits into his own arms,” Cruz continued. “Is that the type of guy you want to protect?”

The snitch caught on.

Cruz almost grinned.

“It's not that,” shouted the snitch. “I don't tell on nobody! Especially not to pigs!”

Cruz dragged the snitch toward the bus stop crowd and then kicked him several times.

“Die on the streets you worthless piece of shit!”

“Still not gonna snitch.”

The detective stared at the crowd with genuine anger in his eyes and then made a bee line for the cruiser. He glanced at the snitch for the last time and quickly drove away.

One thug helped the snitch up and sat him gently at the bus stop bench. He shot his finger up at the detective's car and sat next to the snitch.

“Good looking out bro,” he said to the snitch.

The snitch nodded.

© 2017 Frank Atanacio

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