"Sam, I wanted you to handle this rather than the Police Department, especially at this juncture." "OK,” I said, still curious as to the clandestine nature of this meeting. "OK, here it is in a nutshell.” “The Chief was found as I told you…floating in the bay.” "Yeah, I got that," I said, just a bit agitated. "Well, when he was found by a couple of kids fishing on the bay… he was, uh… uh…” "Well, spit it out, Leland for Christ sakes," I said, noticeably annoyed now. "Well, he was dressed in drag, Sam."
He spits it out, alright, and some of it hit me in my eye! I felt like saying, "Hey! It was a frigging figure of speech," but I could see the distress in his not so impassive expression. So, I held my usual caustic tongue. "Did you say in drag?" I asked. Campbell nodded, yes. Holy shit! Of all people, I thought.
Chief O'Halloran was known for his hatred of all things gay! He was the biggest homophobe I had ever met! I couldn't help it, but I let out the biggest guffaw, which I tried to unsuccessfully stifle. Campbell had this look that said: yeah, I know, right?...
The D.A. explained to me that the press so far had no idea of the Chief's death and that the S.F Police Department would squelch it as long as they could while they did their best to tie up all the loose ends. "And right now, as far as I know, they have no idea where to start. Sam, that's why I want you to take this on. I'd like for you to get as much info as you can before the cops get involved. They'll want to shut down as much information access as they can before this thing explodes. Here's my card with my personal cell number on the back. You can call me night or day," said Campbell. Campbell then held his right hand up for a high-five and then dropped his hand for a low-five. I thought, what is that about? I was almost expecting a pat on my ass with him saying, "Good game!" That was a little weird.
As I watched him drive off, I thought to myself that I should have told him to fuck off! I had this overwhelming feeling that this case might be more than maybe I could handle. But hey, it's the best offer I've had in a long time. I knew that when the cops got a whiff that I was working on this thing, they may not play so nice. Being an ex-homicide detective with twenty years on the force, I still had some friends in the Department... maybe.