tv The Squeeze MSNBC November 28, 2013 12:00pm-1:01pm PST
there's been a culture of lawlessness out here for many years. ford heights is such a tight-knit community, they had that type of we're not telling anybody atmosphere. >> he needs to be off the street and needs to be off the street now. >> from a man hunt in chicago's suburbs to a crystal meth lab in the gay community, cook county investigators are purr sug lead in two different closed words. >> crystal meth, it's huge up
north. we haven't even peeked into it. >> you ever work with the police before or no? >> when you work in the jail, you come across tons of cases. and for about the last year anybody in cook county that's been housed here for methamphetamine, there's been a 90% chance that i've interviewed them at one point or another.
>> the meth was too strong for me. >> it was really? >> it was too strong for me. >> didn't like the high, huh. >> no. >> in the past decade chicago has witnessed the rise of a new and powerfully addictive drug, crystal methamphetamine. meth related arrests cut across race and class line, landing suspected users and dealers from all parts of the cities and suburbs in cook county jail. it's here they join thousands of other detainees being held for trial. most have been charged with crimes but not convicted. >> you guys got a lot of meth out by you? >> criminal intelligence unit investigator mike davis is looking for the right detainees to help him understand the city's meth trafficking network. >> a lot of people that use meth i would honestly say places like this actually save some of them but a lot of them don't even make it in here.
you see the rotted out teeth. i grew up in the crack era and this is different. this is a whole new ball game >> what's different? >> to me, it's more money, it's cheaper to make and people stay high on it longer. >> it will last long. gang bangers won't let you sell meth because it takes away from the projects. >> but there's one market where the meth trade is thriving with no signs of letting up, the gay community. >> with meth around, all my boys, they got quick access to meth. >> huge up north in boys town. we haven't even peeked into it. the community itself is a closed door. >> chicago boys town neighborhood named for its gay friendly businesses and culture is located four miles north of downtown. it's also known for its bath houses and all-night club scenes
where many patrons go to score meth to enhance their sex drive. >> it's different in the gay community, man. >> they buy it faster than you can come into the city. you just party and use it and you get a group of people and smoke and smoke and smoke. it releases the serotonin levels in your brain and getting you a very forward high. it's a very sexual high. >> they are gaining a glimpse into a subculture they know little about. this inmate, who we're calling tango for his protection, comes from that world. >> he's got more meth busts than anybody i have ever come encounter with and he's looking for help on his case. he's going to be honest. he's got no choice but to be. >> if you got a regular 9 to 5 job and somebody introduces you to it on a friday night, do you a little bit, it's so potent you stay awake the entire weekend. and now you got to go work. >> don't you peak during that high? >> the whole thing is an entire peak.
>> what is the feeling? like, is it comparable to heroin? >> no. if you drink three cups of coffee and your head starts to -- >> the caffeine rush. >> it's a constant like that. the longest i've ever stayed up was 19 days. >> can't you die? can't you die? >> and this was continuous every day use over and over and over every day? >> yup. >> with his lengthy arrest record, tango faces up to 12 years in prison for drug possession and delivery charges if convicted. so he's hoping to strike a plea deal with the state's attorney by giving up his meth connections. it's unchartered waters for investigators, who is never worked a case in boys town before. >> he never said we coordinated our shirt for this interview? huge. we were planning all day for this interview.
>> he didn't care. >> any at the bar walk in and get served crystal meth? >> if you know somebody. >> you just got to know where to look, huh? >> yeah. it's not like, if you walk into a boy up in boys town, if you ask somebody where can i find some street level -- >> is that the name? >> no, tina, female names. >> meth to me is not something i've been dealing with before. ste so i was interested to see what he was going to say. we focus on gangs. we never turn down intel, whether it's gang related or not. we don't know where this is going to go. >> 35 miles south of the boys town neighborhood is an entirely different world where police answer shots fired calls on a weekly, sometimes daily basis.
>> yeah, is everything all right? [ indiscernible ] >> there's shooting out there going on. you know they're looking for you guys. just stay in the house, okay? there's a call now a man with a gun. he's looking for this girl. >> there was a turf war last night over who is going to sell drugs in a certain location in ford heights. we have one of the guys in custody right now. the other people looking to kill him now want to go after his girl friend. >> what happens next will trigger an all-out manhunt for a
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budget problems shut down the local police force. today on, investigators matt and jack are searching for one particular gang member. he was last seen waving a gun at women and children on a neighborhood block. >> he was on a bicycle and pulled a gun. he got his crew with him. on his bike, right there. holding a gun. >> he pointed a gun towards you. >> he was pointed at them and then when i say something, he point the at me and took off that way. the kids was shooting hoops. i was trying to keep them from getting shot and a little baby. >> you all right? >> my foot was swelling here. i was trying to push the neighbor's kids and my kids. >> you did a great thing. he can't run that far. the town is not that big. >> somebody's always hiding him. >> jenna and smith know the alleged gunman well.
he's had multiple run-ins with police over the years. we'll call him booth to maintain his anonymity. because he's affiliated with a gang like so many other men in ford heights, most residents here won't turn him in. >> so many people out here are hiding him. and won't nobody tell. >> yesterday he was shooting off that gun on diplomats, just popping it off random until it jammed. thankfully it jammed. >> i lost a child five year ace ego, i'm a mommy. i ain't got time for this. no guns. >> i'm going to be back around and we'll be around tonight, okay? >> there's the guy we're looking for. >> he ain't hanging out, i can tell you that. >> he's going to be hiding somewhere. the craziest thing is all these people know each other. they all grew up together. they've known each other for generations and they still have
these type of beefs with each other. it's just unreal. >> let me see ids on everybody else. >> together with their fellow officers, jenna and smith begin turning up the heat on the area. they're hoping to catch a fresh lead on their suspect. >> my partner tell you what's going on? we're looking for [ bleep ]. spread the word, okay? we're going to be out here until we find him. so spread the word. thank you. >> persistence pays off in this job. you stay on that guy damn long enough and you're going to get him. we're going to get him. >> did you ever see the gay community getting away from meth? >> absolutely not. >> no way, huh?
>> no, you're just going heavier and heavier and heavier and heavier. >> what's the most you've ever seen? >> meth? it looked like a big block of ice, 18, 20 inches long and they were just chipping it away. >> investigator mike davis wants to infiltrate chicago's crystal meth traffic with the help of a cook county jail inmate. this confidential source, who we're calling tango, is an admitted meth user and dealer. he's giving up information in consideration for help from prosecutors. boys town, a predominantly gay neighborhood on the north side that also happens to be the city's leading hub of meth use. >> how many dealers would be say boys town has off the top of your head? >> 50, 60. >> how many people you think you
could identify, like if i were to give you pictures? >> a lot. >> what about this one? >> he's full time. he does bike messenger. >> who is this guy? >> really nice guy. does hair. he's a hair stylist. >> he's pretty much supporting his own habit? >> this guy. >> he's a drag queen. he sells regularly. that's perfect. >> what about this gentleman? >> small time sales, prostitution. >> do you think he's a good looking guy? >> absolutely not. >> he's a cheap prostitute, huh? >> very cheap. >> there's your main guy. >> this guy's a main guy? >> all three of these guys get it from him. right now he's the run with the crown. >> is that what >> take your pick, which one you you refer to them as? >> yeah. want and we'll try to pick out a
certain subject or certain two subjects and we're going to go from there. >> i'll tell you what, you want to find an infestation of triggers and rollers, you go to the bath houses. meth and sex are synonymous. so meth allows you to have sex with people you normally wouldn't have sex with because it just makes you really horny. >> so essentially you're sleeping with all your clients if you're a meth dealer. >> a lot of times. not me personally. >> no, no, i'm sure not you. >> for davis and the sheriff's police, the next step is to start making undercover buys from the top dealers in boys town. because tango's in jail, they'll need the help of his long-time boyfriend on the street to introduce them to the targets. tango's boyfriend is a meth user as well but he's less experienced with the drug trade
and is getting cold feet so tango twists his arm in a last ditch plea. >> listen, listen, they said they can even send in an officer with you that you can introduce and then he can take it from there. the quicker that you do something a little bit quicker, they can go into the states attorney and start working. you see what i'm saying? >> his partner's a pretty innocent kid. we asked his partner what was your gateway drug to meth? he's like there really wasn't a gateway. the guy in jail introduced me to the stuff. >> can you try to hook something like that up? can you? can you? okay. when? all right. love you. bye. so he's game. i'm game. and i'm going to push him to do it. >> however, as police take the operation to the next level, they worry that tango's partner
you want to get a gram. they'll front the money so whatever's easiest. >> with meth traffic on the rise, investigators mike davis has recruited an informant from the city's up in one hub of the meth use, the gay communitcommu. >> you can't just do this. you have to coordinate this through davis because they have to give you the money and know exactly when you're going to come in.
>> they have to set up please. >> we're on the way. >> four days later, tango's partner comes through. and now, davis and the investigator hernandez are are are headed to boy's town brief him before the deal goes down. several under cover units will be joining them to conduct surveillance. >> you just got to go this and do what he normally does when he purchases. there's nothing special he has to do. just be normal. >> he's really nervous. he does not feel comfortable at all and the on reason he's doing it is because he cares about his partner. >> we'll have plenty of guys on the street, undercover vehicles. >> right there. >> that's him. >> walking up to, right behind you, right shoulder. >> honk your horn.
he's so green. i'll meet you guys there. >> investigators move to another location where they'll hash out a plan with tango's boyfriend. we're calling him cash to protect his identity. cash has arranged to meet the target as a downtown hotel but is waiting for them to set a time. >> his prime target has not called him since lunch, but i know he's got multiple people he can do. it's just his preference is this one guy. >> let's jump in. >> is this something you've done in the past where you called him and then he doesn't get in touch with you until he's ready? >> that's how they do it with
everybody. >> it's going to have to happen today. do you want to try giving him a call or -- >> you a little nervous or what? >> i just want to reassure you, just do what you normally do. nothing out of the ordinary. >> absolutely not. >> is it going to voicemail? think he's still at lunch or what? >> the person he was having lunch with was his supplier so -- >> could he be reupped then? >> could be, yes. >> we give him the indication we need something to happen today. we're not going to spend this amount of manpower all the time. >> meanwhile on the far south end of cook county, the clock is ticking for investigators there as well.
35 miles from boys town the sheriff's police are on the hunt for an armed gang member in ford heights. >> it's like a ghost town. i'm going to head over to where jt is over there. >> investigators conrad edged and zach smith are among those searching for the suspect we're calling booth to maintain his anonymity. he's wanted in connection in at least three incidents in which he either threatened people with a gun or fired shots in a public area. >> he has a warrant for his arrest right now. word's going to spread pretty quickly he's a person of interest. if he's got any brain power left at all, he's going to try to change up his behavior patterns. >> he has a tendency to lie low at times and then he springs when you least expect it. >> so now every arrestee in ford heights from traffic violators from drug offenders is getting
squeezed for information about booth. >> do you know who i'm talking about? >> i know who you're talking about. i know who you're referring to. >> you could really help yourself out today. >> but the code of silence here runs deep. ford height is a uniquely closed community held hostage by gangs and narcotics dealers. >> they have the parole status. >> men like booth are just one symptom of deeper rooted problems that have plagued ford heights for generations. in a community of roughly 3,000 residents, half live below poverty level. job opportunities are few and
far between so the quickest fix for many here is to sell drugs. >> 27 years i've been here. it's over with, man. ain't no jobs out here, nothing. look at this. it's gone. poverty. >> nobody deals drugs because they like it. they deal because they make money. >> i'm 26 years old, i got three kids. i'm out here every day, every day. y'all have a beautiful day. >> a lot of families have come to depend on it. they may have a 14-year-old son and the mother's got two or three kids and this 14-year-old son is bringing home $500 a week selling drugs. that's the only income that she has. >> hey, jay, he's at the liquor store. he got braids and a red leather jacket. allegedly, that's the gun that is running that spot. >> with drugs come gangs and three groups dominate in ford heights. the gangster disciples, the vice lords and the four corner
hustlers. they compete for territory within a two square mile area that's divided in half by a highway. the recent closing of 100 public housing units in the southern half has forced many of those residents to relocate north, including gang members. among them, booth, a four corner hustler who is allegedly trying to move his drug sales into rival turf. . he has to take over a rival turf. and they don't want to give it up. that is why we heard gunshots today sbx we had gunshots yesterday and it's going to continue. >> everything was somewhat fine when the people over here stayed over here and the people over there stayed over there. but now you put them together and it's a recipe for disaster.
>> based on past experience, police know that booth enemies have a better chance of finding them first but it's often the law abiding citizens that get caught in the middle and pay a price. >> i just hope that he doesn't hurt anybody else before we get ahold of him. so i get 2 times the points. and those points add up fast. so, sure, make me the grunt. 'cause i'll be using those points to help me get to a beach in miami. and allllllll the big shots will be stuck here at the cube farm. the citi thankyou preferred card. now earn 2x the points on dining out and entertainment, with no annual fee.to apply, go to citi.com/thankyoucards
>> here's what's happening. a new jersey family has a lot to be thankful for this holiday now that their son is home face. the 19-year-old autistic boy disappeared weeks ago with, he was found in ohio. and a woman released in jail after she was released and awaits retrail. she fired a warning shot at her abu tif husband. another update in one hour.
do you think you can get out of there within 30 minutes of showing up? with an excuse or reason or he doesn't freak out? >> i understand he's a friend or what not. you got to try to -- >> i just need to get out of the room. >> yeah, with the product. >> investigator mike davis is coaching a first-time informant from chicago's boys town neighborhood. they've enlisted his help to set up a prominent crystal meth dealer in the gay community. the informant, whom we're calling cash, is working on behalf of his boyfriend in jail. >> this has to go, this has to happen for me, too, you know? >> cash isn't the only one learning on the fly today. investigators are just beginning to understand the drug subculture of boys town.
it's here that crystal meth addiction is on the rise. according to the chicago department of public health, 10% of local gay men have used meth, which is also linked to higher rates of unprotected sex and the spread of hiv. >> meth in general you always hear it's coming to your city, it's coming to your city and when it does, it's going to take over. they say it ruins your whole life, it ruins a community. if you can say you're a part of trying to stop it when it's first becoming prevalent in chicago, that's why we're here, that's what we do for a living. >> but as davis discovers, meth dealers can be just as slippery as any other target in the drug game. >> we'll be back at 8 p.m. if you want to hang out tonight. i'm down with that. >> cash and his dealer had previously agreed to meet this afternoon but now that plan will have to change.
>> all right, i'm going to go to the park. i'm getting off at illinois. >> the team reconvenes later that night while cash stays in contact with their target. an hour and a half passes until the target says he's still making deliveries to other customers. he won't make it back to his hotel so police call it quits. >> it's a big game. >> the informant made an effort. he tried. but he has no control over what the target's going to do. >> for cash it was his best chance to try to get his boyfriend out of jail and now it's gone. >> he's crying a little bit, he's really upset. this is the first time i've ever had a guy cry when it doesn't work out. it's usually me crying when it
doesn't work out. >> police decide to give him one more shot to set up another target in boys town but it's got to happen fast. >> he'll probably be a little more seasoned and crafty in order to make something like this happen. because he has to be. he's got two days. >> while the team on the city's north side face as setback, another unit catches a possible break in the far south suburbs. >> liquor city, chicago road. >> they've nabbed a suspect on a minor drug offense who said they can help them find the alleged gunman we've been calling booth. booth's been in hiding in ford heights and investigators conrad edged and zach smith are eager
to find him. >> we want to know where he's at so we can put him in handcuffs, okay? can you help us do that? >> till somebody else gets shot. >> now that they return to the station, they sense their detainee has had a change of heart. >> listen to me, if you tell us where he's at, we'll go get him. you'll sit here. if it's all good, we'll let you go. >> we won't bring him back here. we'll bring him somewhere else. >> he ain't fwing going to see you. >> don't think you're just going to tell us something and we're going to let you go away. so we asked him do you know where this person is. we're not going to interview on the street where everybody's watching and trying to listen. we'll bring you back to the station. once we got him here, he said, what is that guy's name again? >> edged and smith send their
detainee off to jail and it isn't long before booth emerges from hiding again. this time he allegedly does what police always feared he'd do. >> he just shot a girl about two hours ago. so -- >> 13th and washington, 13th and washington. about two different sources now say. >> we're using some of our informants and we're trying to get realtime about where they think he may be. >> police, come to the door! >> he said he's not going to go easy, that if he has to shoot the police, he will.
i have to make a quick call. give me a minute. >> meet us at 13th and lexington. 13th and lexington. >> we're rolling. >> an all-out manhunt is unfolding in south chicago's ford heights where a man named as booth shot a woman an hour ago. witnesses say he was aiming at a man but hit the man's girl friend instead. the bullet went through her leg and booth fled on foot. now 22 members of the sheriff's gang and fugitive warrant team are descending on the area to find their suspect. >> he did make comments that we're getting from people that we talk to that he is not afraid to shoot at the police, he's not afraid to do what he needs to do to get away. if he decides that's the way he wants to go, we'll continue our
business on our end. >> police are blanketing ford heights but they're not going in blind this time. they've enlisted paid street informants to chase down leads into booth's whereabouts. sergeant jason o'malley is helping to lead the search. >> keep working their phones, see what you find out. we're working four different informants right now. all of them have decent information. it's just you're getting it in bits and pieces. >> their latest tip, booth's still in the area, riding in a black mustang with another gang member. >> i have two different sources now say black mustang no, plate, no nothing. trying to get more info right now. >> o'malley's team hits the
block where booth's friends and associates live. >> it's such a close-knit community, people have that we're not telling anybody type of attitude. >> believe me, he is not here now. >> all right. >> without our informants we shall would not have information. >> things begin moving quickly when another unit spots a black mustang parked a few blocks away. >> unon occupied. >> police! open the door. police! open the door. >> the owner of the mustang emerges, the same man who was with booth earlier.
>> we got [ bleep ]. he came out of the house. >> this is the story. you know why we're out here, right? >> yeah. oi heard where. >> is he at? >> who? >> we're going to try one more time. let's start over. where's he at? >> last time i saw him -- >> last time you saw him he was in the back of your car but where's he at now. >> i dropped him off at the store. >> what store? >> at the store up the street. he's like, man, i need to get up out of here and i took him to the store. that's it. >> whose house is this? >> that's my home girl, that's her mama's house. ain't nobody in there. i'm here visiting. >> and there's nobody in that house? >> just me. i don't know what the [ bleep ]'s going on or none of that. >> you don't know what's going on? you don't live in ford heights. you know that we've been looking for [ bleep ] for a while. >> but i ain't got nothing to do with that, though. >> what you mean you got nothing to do with that?
you riding around -- he's been riding in your car. >> police get consent to search. and move in, bracing for a fight. >> i don't know. don't be mad that i don't believe you. >> they clear the house within minutes. booth's not there. and his friend, now in custody, is feeling the heat. >> he said he'd tell you what he did? >> no, he told me he'd get me out. >> but he doesn't tell you what he was going there for? >> he didn't tell me. >> if what his friend's saying is true, then booth is headed ten miles south to a town outside of cook county. >> he's saying he probably somewhere in the up. >> do you what you can if you can find anything tonight.
>> investigators reach out to their informant and over the next hour they confirm that booth fled to university park. now it's a matter of pinpointing exactly where he's hiding. marshals, the team uses electron being surveillance to locate the a e fugitive. they narrow their search to a single location, an apartment complex, and get ready to make an arrest the following morning. >> 10-4, we have two cars rolling in right now. >> this is jenna, we got him. >> one of two things. either he gives up or he's going to be fighting. plus, their live webinars. i use daily market commentary to improve my strategy. and my local scottrade office guides my learning every step of the way.
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you guys are setting up surveillance in the apartment complex. any moves on the apartments, we'll get enforcement on the street. >> police are waging a man hunt for an armed suspect we've been calling booth. the cook county sheriff's gang investigators believe their suspect is hiding out at an apartment complex. but don't know which unit yet. they've set up camp a half mile away. while undercover officers are keeping an eye on the building. they've also got confidential sources trying to verify the apartment number. >> the information we're getting from informants is he will shoot back. he doesn't care if it's the police or not. just keep that in mind. not that that's going to happen, i just want everybody to make sure they're covered. or if you can see him, take him out. >> until they're ready to go on,
police are watching every car that leaves the complex to make sure the fugitive doesn't escape. and they've just spotted one vehicle whose driver could be booth. >> this is jenna. we've got it in front of us. he said he's not going easy. if he's got to shoot police, he will. we'll take it down in sand piper. let me see those hands. shut the car off with your left hand. everybody keep your hands up. hands up. >> but it's a false alarm. booth's not inside. >> what's wrong with you people? driving around with weed in your car? all right. we're going to break loose. head back and regroup. we're going to get this information. >> by the time he's done, investigator matt jenna and his team hear from one of their informants. they get the apartment number they've been waiting for.
now it's time to grab their suspect. >> it's going to be that building right there. >> jenna and nine other armed officers including several u.s. marshals head up to the apartment. the resident there gives them permission to search. they find booth and another male inside. both surrender without incident. >> all right, we're clear. >> we all had that in our mind knowing this guy is willing to shoot police. your alertness is definitely heightened. are we going to take them? is this going to be the time? everything is a bit more stressful, that's for sure.
>> authorities place both men under arrest. they'll charge booth with 15 total felonies including aggravated discharge of a firearm and attempted murder. he could face life in prison if convicted. >> it's nice when you get someone like this off the street. because the violence is going to go down. even if it's just a little, it's something. it's not that you don't care about the other gang members that get shot. it's the kids. i have three kids of my own at the home. my concern is all them kids that are out playing now that it's summer vacation. that's what makes this one that much better. >> now that the manhunt's over, the sheriff police turn their attention back to other cases. including the crystal meth traffic in boystown. investigator mike davis is moving forward with a pair of informants we're called tango
and cash to set up that area of meth dealers. one area has fallen through. so they begin pursuing another. they've just completed their first successful buy. >> how do you think the transaction went? >> i think it was fine. >> were you all comfortable up there? >> didn't act like that. but my heart is racing even talking about it. >> really? >> yeah. >> this informant we named cash agrees to help to get his boyfriend a reduced prison sentence. >> let's just say the person i'm doing this for i care a lot about. i wouldn't do this for myself. i feel like someone's outcome is completely on you. i mean, i've paid thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars for lawyers and phone calls.
i disagreed with the decisions he's made, but i'm not going to leave somebody. if i accept to stay with them, i have to accept whatever outcome. >> we had an informant in there. we were also able to make a buy out of that location. what we bought tested positive for crystal meth. >> cash scores another transaction for police several days later. it gives them the evidence they need to make their first boystown arrest. >> it's a very small apartment from what our informant's telling us. entry, mike gleason followed by moose. >> did you ever think you'd be doing this? >> crazy thing is love somehow justifies things you never thought you'd do. and i have crossed lines that i would never cross to help him.
>> police make a successful hit. they take their target into custody and recover the narcotics and paraphernalia they hoped for thanks to cash. >> the guy was great. he was probably one of the best informants i've ever worked with on the street. >> even so, there's no guarantee that cash's efforts will pay off for his boyfriend tango. who still has to convince the state's attorney that he'll go clean if he's given a second chance. >> you know, my thought is is he going to get back out there and use again? if you look at true addicts that are really resourceful, they usually have set up safety nets and surround themselves with enablers. and it almost appeared as if that was what was going on. we got to see his boyfriend. i think he's going to feel used. there's no doubt. >> when it comes to drugs and
crime, some patterns can seem almost impossible to break. by the end of another summer in ford heights, the sheriff's police have received more than 100 calls about gunfire. even though they've aggressively reduced crime by more than 33% since they took over policing here, they still face an uphill battle. >> there's been a culture of lawlessness out here for many years. the culture of violence that's got to change. and it's only going to change when you get cooperation from the residents. >> our hearts go out to the kids. you know, they didn't ask to be born into this mess. it's sad to say that some of them, their future may entail being out here selling the drugs. they don't understand that life exceeds far beyond the boundaries of ford heights.
chicago's cook county jail, home to 10,000 detainees. and all ready to break loose. the gangster disciples, the biggest criminal organization inside and outside the jail is headed towards civil war. >> go ahead. stand by. >> it's in security, right? >> investigators greg carpenter and adrian sandoval are about to launch a search with their fellow officers. it's one of many tactical