COP HUNTER by Vincent with William Hoffer Murano
Kirkus Star


Age Range: 1976 - 86
Email this review


A former undercover detective for the New York Police Department of Internal Affairs tells all, aided by the coauthor of Midnight Express (1977) and Freefall (1989). Before he was hired as Bob ""Baby Face"" Leuci's bodyguard in Leuci's undercover dealings with high-level corruption in the N.Y.C. police force (detailed in Robert Daley's Prince of the City, 1979), patrolman Murano's greatest dream was to achieve detective status and make his father proud. Unfortunately, Leuci, Murano's friend and across-the-street neighbor, took to confiding so much of his own corrupt past and his current activities as informant to the aghast 29-year-old that the Department of Internal Affairs had no choice but to hire Murano as an undercover cop. To his surprise, Murano--an easygoing fellow with a vague resemblance to Fred Flintstone--discovered a natural talent both for acting the undercover roles of small-time bookie, burglar, hit man, and corrupt police sergeant, and for organizing effective stings. After his work with Leuci ended, he remained with the DIA (nicknamed ""Rat City""), going on to expose a stunning array of police corruption that ranged from the routine sale of police uniforms and radios to burglars to dealing cocaine and employing hit men. Ten years (1976-86) of the constant danger and frustration of undercover work saw Murano suffering hypertension and high blood pressure, putting up with ex-coworkers' intense disdain for ""cop hunters,"" and teaching his prepubescent children how to use a gun in self-defense. By the time he retired, he had become an overweight, largely disillusioned detective with a weak heart, but he survived nevertheless to see the ""Blue Wall"" of police collusion begin to crumble, and to watch his own son fake his place on a slightly cleaner force. By turns action.packed and intimately revealing--this true-life thriller grabs hold and doesn't let go.

Pub Date: July 9th, 1990
Publisher: Simon & Schuster