“A monumental account of an urban travesty….[It] has all the earmarks of a classic.”
—Dennis Lehane, New York Times bestselling author of Mystic River and Shutter Island
Dick Lehr’s The Fence, subtitled, “A Police Cover-up Along Boston’s Racial Divide,” is a shocking true story of racism, brutality, official lies and negligence, when the truth about the savage beating of black plainclothes policeman by white officers was hidden behind a “blue wall of silence.” Respected journalist Lehr, winner of the Hancock Award, the Loeb Award, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and bestselling author of Black Mass and Judgment Ridge, sheds a brilliant light on all aspects of this powerful, disturbing event and its aftermath.
Mired in the racial conflicts of a divided city, Lehr, coauthor of the bestselling Black Mass, details one of the most controversial cases in the annals of the Boston Police Department, involving a brutal assault on a black plainclothes officer by his fellow cops and the resulting 1998 civil rights trial against the police force. Not only does Lehr paint the racial and political turbulence of Boston at the time, but he explores the cultural backgrounds of the black officer, Michael Cox; his attacker and fellow officer, Kenny Conley; and Robert "Smut" Brown, a drug dealer involved in the killing that started it all. Cox, who responded to the murder and chased after the car carrying the suspects, was beaten very severely by his overzealous colleagues, waited for an administrative apology and got only a coverup by the department. What followed was a sensational trial with all of the key ingredients of police brutality and a "solid blue code of silence," with no winners. Jolting, nightmarish and potent, this true cop yarn bests any bogus reality show or overblown tabloid tale with its hard-boiled spin. 8 pages of b&w photos; 1 map.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Every police supervisor should read this book. The failures seen here trying to protect a horrific mistake deeply tarnishes a good departments reputation and ultimately deepens the publics mistrust of those who protect and serve. Read and learn what not to do.