Trojan Horse Operation – Ypsilanti Township – When I was Lion Strong
What I’m about to tell you happened at the peak of the Blood and Crip gang war. Street corner crack cocaine trafficking had reached it’s Zenith and many corners were occupied by a crack cocaine dealer (in the open) and a gunman (hidden). Drug trafficking turf have been claimed and paid for in blood and gangs claimed ownership of their corners. Crack cocaine was the newest national epidemic and the zombies of the night moved among us, robbed us, killed us.
My Brothers and I fought them back in the dark while you slept.
This is the story of one operation.
The bosses had decided on a new plan of attack, a Trojan horse operation. About 20 of us signed up for this overtime operation but to be honest I would have worked the detail for free. I loved this stuff – These assignments were always exciting, dangerous and unpredictable. We all met at Station #2 for a briefing but we all knew what we were in for. We were to be dropped into a “target rich environment” and expected to run down the rabbits.
We broke into partners for protection. Three partner crews were in marked patrol cars and assigned to the outer perimeter, two partner crews were in unmarked surveillance cars and assigned Scout responsibilities. I was one of the remaining ten, veterans of operations like these, Tucked in the Truck. We were the jump out crew and were to stay hidden until the time was right.
No one was to run off without cover and the buddy system assured that. Each of us was clad in armor and dangling flex cuffs hung from our ballistic vests. The time had come for a last press check of weapons, magazines, flashlights, handcuffs and a thumbs up to your partner.
As I mount up my adrenaline begins to build and my focus becomes more acute. I felt more than human – I was a part of this team – we had plans – we had targets. Muscle memory flashes it’s bright light, I tingle with anticipation of the night. In the moment I know I love this. We were ready.
We ten pack tightly side by side into the rear of a U-Haul moving truck. The floor was wooden and splintered as we tried to sit without stings. One of the surveillance units made a pass down Calder street and by our intended jump out location near the edge of a city park. “Be advised there are more than a dozens gang members on the corner and they seem twitchy – They gave us the stink eye,” the Scout advised.
The undercover officer begins to drive us and the truck to the park.
The bosses had decided to double roll the dice. Not only were 10 cops about to be air dropped on an active drug street corner but they wanted a cocaine buy to go with it. The Undercover officer was to drive up and buy crack and we would bail out after the deal went down.
One of the Cops in the back of the truck starts flashing his light against his newest piece of gear, a glow in the dark POLICE jacket. “What the fuck are you doing Bill” I ask. He says “I don’t want any of you fuckers shooting me in all the confusion were about to create.” I laughed but couldn’t argue with his logic.
Someone ripped a two note fart, more laughter and threats followed.
“ONE MILE” the driver calls out.
The Undercover Officer begins to give a description of a possible suspect as the truck rolls to a stop “I can’t see his cover man” and then he went quiet. A hushed deadly silence overtook all of us in the rear of the truck. Any tiny movement or noise could endanger not only the Undercover Officer but the whole operation.
We wait and listen.
U/C: Hey Gee you straight?
Dope Man: Yea Cuz what you need?
U/C: How about two twenties?
Dope Man: Let me see the cash.
20 seconds pass…
U/C: Good deal (Our signal to bail and catch whatever ran)
The rear door of the moving truck flies open and all of us hit the ground at once. I was instantly reminded of some wild rodeo except made for Cops. One of my Brothers let go with a war cry at the top of his lungs.
I recognized a half a dozen gang members when I jumped from the truck. All I could see were assholes and elbows as they ran towards the park entrance. Many of them were already career criminals and If they were caught they were looking at decades in prison.
The work begins…
The U/C had giving a good description of the crack cocaine dealer and I had him in my sights from the time my feet hit the ground. I ran after him into the darkness – he was my single target – my partner with me. This thug was ours, we cut him from the pack hoping someone else had the hidden gunman – this thug’s cover.
I trusted my Pack – I trusted my partner – I trusted my skill – I trusted my Heart
The calm clear eyed animal within me chased down this Thug. All sounds stopped as I closed the distance and slammed him to the ground. After a short struggle the cuffs were on. He was a stunned animal, he was my prey.
I hear my own heartbeats first as I re-entered the World.
We take the crack dealer back up to one of the waiting marked patrol units which now flooded the area. From one of the cars I could hear the theme song from the Cops show playing. “Bad boys bad boys what you gonna do, what you gonna do when they come for you.” Most of the other Thugs were captured and a couple of stolen handguns were recovered. I notice a neighbor give us a thumbs up from behind his curtains. I appreciate the intensity of my life.
It was a good night. A lot of thugs went to jail and no Cops got hurt and I made overtime. What more do you want?
© 2016, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.