A black Cadillac tore around the busy street corner, barely slowing as it approached the steps of the courthouse. The tinted, passenger-side window rolled down and a semi-automatic handgun poked its barrel out.
Piano-Teeth Malone, mob informant and federally protected witness, stood frozen in his tracks, his worst fears looking like a definite possibility. Malone's FBI bodyguards threw themselves on top of him, but not before two shots erupted and Malone had taken a bullet in the buttocks.
The Cadillac screeched across two lanes of traffic. But the driver made the mistake of turning left down an alley and getting stuck behind a double-parked delivery van. The two hit men scrambled out and raced away - right into the arms of four off-duty officers. Having heard the shots and the yelling, the officers grabbed the running men and held on until the FBI caught up.
Special Agent Sam was new to the unit and was always given the boring, inconsequential jobs. In this case, he was told to clear the Cadillac out of the alley so that normal traffic could resume. Sam adjusted the rearview mirror, backed the car out, and drove it around to where his colleagues were Mirandizing their suspects.
Sam stood and watched, expecting to be sent for doughnuts next. One of the handcuffed men was tall, lean, and sullen. The other was a good six inches shorter, Sam's height. Large but short. He spoke animatedly, gesturing with his hands.
Agent BJ, director of the unit, seemed exasperated. "They ditched the gun back in the alley," BJ growled. "They ditched their gloves back there, too. All right, boys, I'm going to ask you again. Which one of you was the shooter?"
"Not me," said the large, short man.
"Not me," said the lean, sullen one.
Agent Sam smiled. Here was his chance to impress his boss. "I know who the shooter was," he said quietly.
Who was the shooter and how did Agent Sam know?