Thursday September 3rd, 12:49 P.M. Brooklyn
2700 Block West 15th Street
The Escalade reached the end of the block before Kelli pulled out. It turned right onto Audubon and she accelerated. She reached the corner in time to see the Escalade make another right.
The lieutenant was still on the line, shouting in her ear. “Storm, what are you doing? We can pick up Carlos later.”
“I can’t do that, boss. I need to see what he’s doing. He may be on to us and…”
“Damnit, Storm. Okay, just stay back and follow him. You call me when you get to wherever it is he’s going.”
As she made the right, she saw the Escalade make a left. She caught up and watched Carlos merge onto Harlem River Drive and head south.
The lieutenant was still shouting in her ear. “Yes sir, as soon as I know where he’s going, I’ll call.” She flipped the phone shut and concentrated on Carlos.
She kept her distance and followed Carlos down FDR Drive and through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel. While she didn’t know his exact destination, she had a good idea that he was heading for Coney Island.
Carlos exited and made a right. She was three cars back, and the light turned as she reached the corner. The Escalade moved farther away while she waited for the cross traffic to pass.
She caught a break in traffic and wheeled out onto Cropsey. She couldn’t see the Escalade and sped up, weaving in and out of traffic. She finally spotted him and slowed down. The Escalade pulled into the left turn lane at Neptune and she pulled in five cars back.
She followed the car as it made a left onto West 16th and stayed back. The Escalade pulled up on the left in front of a building with a large roll up door. Carlos and the other men climbed out. Kelli found a spot, pulled over half a block down, and watched.
The four men walked up to a side door and Carlos pounded on it. A few seconds later, the door opened and they disappeared inside. From her vantage point, she couldn’t get a good look at the front of the building.
She knew it was a rookie mistake to go into a situation without backup. She also knew the lieutenant would have her ass when she got back. It’s always better to ask forgiveness afterward. At least, that’s what Mom would say. She grabbed her cell phone and climbed out.
She crossed the street about thirty yards from the building and heard gun shots. She drew her weapon and took cover behind a parked car. She reached for her cell phone and dialed the precinct.
“33rd Precinct Detective Unit, Yablonski.”
“Stan, this is Kelli. I need to talk to the boss.”
“Yeah, hang on.”
Kelli heard several clicks and the lieutenant picked up.
“Storm, where are you?”
“I’m in Brooklyn, on West 16th. Carlos and his crew stopped at this building in the 2700 block. And boss, there were shots fired.”
The lieutenant was silent for a moment. “You stay put, I’ll get some backup over there.”
“Yes sir, and make it fast.”
Kelli waited for several more minutes before seeing three men run out of the building. She spotted Carlos in the lead, and he ran for his Escalade and jumped in the driver’s side. The other two men jumped in the back. She waited until they left and ran back to her car.
The lieutenant was still on the phone. “Boss, they’re leaving. Carlos and his guys are moving out. And it looks like they’re one man short.”
“Kelli, I want you to stay back. You don’t know what happened in there. You wait for backup to arrive. Got it?”
“Their gone, boss. I’m just going to approach the door and take a look. That’s all. Okay?”
“Damnit, Kelli. Okay, but don’t take any chances.”
“I won’t.” She flipped the phone closed and put it away.
Carlos and his crew were long gone, and she assumed they were headed back to the city. She slowly approached the building, the Glock at her side.
She stepped up to the open door and glanced inside. There was a short hallway with a closed door at the end. She stood and listened for movement. After several minutes, she entered the hallway and walked to the second door.
When she reached it, she paused and listened again. When she was sure there was no one moving inside, she pushed the door open with her foot. It was a large room with an overhead florescent light hanging from the ceiling. The light flickered and buzzed casting eerie shadows across the room.
It was against procedure to enter without backup, and the lieutenant would give her hell for doing it. She raised her Glock and entered anyway.