BADGE OF THE ASSASSIN by Robert & Philip Rosenberg Tanenbaum
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A calculatedly tear-scarred saga of mayhem in Harlem and San Francisco triggered by the brutal gunning from behind of a black and a white cop by three young goons of the Black Liberation Army. The book is divided into four parts--the first two omniscient, the last two from author Tanenbaum's point of view as convicting prosecutor. In May 1971, as the story opens, the two cops come out of a Harlem housing project and the killers suddenly step behind them and cut them down from six-inches distance. The killers move on to San Francisco and some weeks later set up a BLA raid on a police station house. Two of the original killers, however, are already in jail for trying to machinegun a detective sergeant in his car--and one of them is such a loudmouth politicizer that he tells his dopedealer cellmste that he ""offer a pig"" back Eut. The celimate informs, and soon the police are hurrying croascountry and back to nail down witnesses and evidence. The third killer, the ringleader, is finally arrested in New Orleans. Then begins Tanenbaum's two trials: the first wipes out when his witnesses fail him on the stand, and ends in a mistriaL. More solid evidence is needed, and a long search at last uncovers the buried service,revolver taken from the dead black cop, which drives home the convictions in the second trial. It is four years of riveting agony overflowing with racial emotions--not up to Capote or Thomas Thompson, but sure to get attention.

Pub Date: April 27th, 1979
ISBN: 1451607466
Publisher: Dutton