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COPS: the myth and the reality

By Stephen Williams
June, 1980; Pg. 39

“There's nothing wrong with shooting as long as the right people get shot"
                                                           - Dirty Harry

"I'll spend 12 months if I have to, but he'll come out alive and that's why we're here"                                                            - Staff Sergeant Brian Peel

Ah, heart. Detectives Gerald Stevenson and Robert McLean knew they were in for it the afternoon I met them outside the courthouse. I wanted to talk to them about Saul David Betesh, the psychopathic killer; they were the detectives who had taken Betesh through a histrionic, 18-hour re-enactment of his murder of a Yonge Street shoe shine boy. Stevenson has been on the force 26 years, six in homicide; McLean 15 years, five in homicide. They were now involved in another murder trial, this one in connection with the slaying of Toronto lawyer Bruce Lorenz. It was afternoon. We went for lunch.

That morning the defence counsel for Gordon Allen, the insurance salesman accused of murdering Lorenz, had been cross-examining ly, by the dead man's wife, Lauralee. (Originally charged with first-degree murder along with Allen, Lauralee later pleaded guilty to a charge

Stevenson is a tall, heavy-set man with an open face and a wry sense of humor. McLean is shorter, a little paunchy, a little less conservative - the kind of guy who might wear a glen-check sports jacket with a red vest. They ordered double whiskeys on the rocks. They me that the man in the prisoner's dock, the "suspect" it had taken months and months of fastidious, painstaking investigation and tedious paperwork to transform into the "accused," was going to walk out, free, and they were destined for the dock themselves. That really burned. But what could they do?

Stevenson is now in charge of the drunk tank in 5 I Division.

I remember that afternoon. Between descriptions of their trip to Sioux Lookout to collect Betesh's brothers-in-crime ....

(To be continued...)

"Gets so angry, when the teardrops start,
But he can't be loved 'cause. he's got no heart"

                                           -Elvis Costello, Watching the Detectives *

['From the album My Aim is True @ Plangent Vision Music Ltd., London, England]

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