THE COPS ARE ROBBERS
In this interesting TV
movie based on a true story, Ed
Asner plays the Superintendent of the Boston Metro Police Department, Jake
Quinn. Jake is assigned to the department with the objective of eliminating
deeply rooted corruption from the force. The film reiterates frequently that
cops don't squeal on each other. Nevertheless, Jake is able to recruit a third
generation lieutenant named Paul, played by James Morrison, to help him collar
the ring leader of the crimes.
Jake has discovered that the highest-ranking man in his
department, Captain Jerry Clemente, is "a legend in his own time",
pulling patrol heists, and probably involving other officers. Jake asks Paul to
tail Jerry, but the worst he can learn is that Jerry frequently visits his
mistress while he's on duty.
In the meantime, Jerry confidently persuades his gang of
police officers and street criminals to clean out the safe deposit vault from
their local bank. As he tells them, "There are two kinds of cops, honest
cops and smart cops, and even honest cops don't talk."
Jake and Paul are sure Jerry was behind the heist, but
can't prove anything. Jake begins a subtle program of constant pressure on Jerry
and the other officers in his gang, hoping they'll start to turn on each other.
Eventually, one of the gang sets up Jerry, in exchange for full immunity, and
Jerry is sentenced to 30 to 40 years in prison, while the other gang members get
lesser sentences. The proceeds from the bank heist, worth about 25 million
dollars, were never recovered.
James appears several times in the movie, as Paul makes
frequent status reports to Jake about the case. It's interesting to note that
the screenplay was based on the book, written by Gerald Clemente.