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Pawn Shop Chronicles Det. Moppy Ryerson

A&F Pawn Jewelry and Loan


This is the first of many short stories of a favorite childhood character of mine created by my Uncle Terry. The stories here are fictional and may have occasional instances of real world scenarios.

Chapter One

Detective Ryerson introduced himself to us in 2005 and he was on the hunt for a Rolex. He came in our store and advised us the gang was on the move and may bring in the watch and from then on he made sure we called him Moppy. He stated he was given that nickname way back at the beginning of his career because he was very good at locking up criminals. He left no further explanation and from then on we refer to him as Detective Moppy or just Moppy for short. Moppy has some extraordinary skills that will show as the stories unfold.

Moppy is 6'2 with thick jet black hair, steely blue eyes, and a muscular slim build. He wears a well trimmed beard and a fedora. His eyebrows are jet black and well trimmed like of the Metrosexual movement. He wears a trench coat for protection and to hide all of his gadgets. His senses are not of the human kind, his keen sense of smell is more like a K-9's. His sense of touch is extraordinary, he has the ability to unlock a bank vault in the matter of minutes just by touch and feel as the tumblers hit the corresponding notch. His watch not only tells time but is a communicator and has built in GPS. Keep in mind the first smart watch was not invented by Apple, it was created by Steve Mann and Linux was used as the OS back in 98. His Shoes have some cool features that are forward in design technology. They have a bounce feature that can enable Moppy to leap more than twenty feet over obstructions and yet land safely.

The city Moppy works and resides in is set in a beautiful sleepy town in Oregon near the coast. It has mountain trails, zip lines, parks and a beautiful waterfall. The city itself was incorporated in 1860 during the gold rush to California. The town folk mostly know one another by name. The big industry here now is call centers and government operations. They have several coffee shops, cafes and bistros. Only a handful of fast food chains operate here which is nice. Locally sourced and grown is the theme. Drugs were never an issue until crystal meth and opiates hit the market. Now Moppy has his work cut out for him along with his comrades.

Moppy found out the name of one of the gang members by way of using the Pawn crime data base which gives law enforcement information on all pawn transactions within their district. He tracked down the serial number of the watch and then was able to get a name and address. He then set up surveillance at the perp's address and made descriptions of all comings and goings. He began to notice several young men with the same distinctive tattoo on each of them. They were carrying large packages into the home from a plain white box truck. This was going to turn into something far more sinister than just some thugs stealing watches. Moppy didn't realize the FBI had these guys under surveillance as well.

Moppy has had many dealings with the FBI over his twenty year career and in most instances these cases work out without incident.

The next day Moppy was continuing his observance of the home at 8259 Barrington Ave S just west of downtown. He proceeded to run the tag on the big box truck and then run an ID check on the driver. To his dismay the driver ID check is registering to a 63-year-old white male with an address in Albuquerque, NM. He ignored this piece of information and continued research on the tattoo's and photos for a possible match. Just then he gets a knock on his window, it was an FBI undercover agent signaling for him to lower his window. Moppy stated "I need to see some ID before I roll down any window." The agent whipped out his badge and pointed his finger in a down motion. Moppy steadied his hand on his revolver and slowly lowered his window. The Agent recognized Moppy and wanted to give him a heads up that the entire house was under surveillance by the FBI special contraband task force and the DEA. Moppy took a note of the situation and advised the agent he would back off. The agent stated "These guys are under a watch that spans the Eastern Seaboard." Moppy drove off in his 2016 Metallic Gray Mustang GT in a fury of pure American muscle and began to search more about the case and the home on Barrington Ave.

He went to the Pawn shop where the Rolex was originally pawned and advised them of the situation so far. The owner of the Rolex and the Broker would need to work it out. Moppy was not going to let this go, he knew that something was not quite right with the FBI agent code-named "John." He knew the agent from a previous homicide case back in his early twenties. Moppy then immediately hacked into the FBI database using his lab in a tavern inside a rock covered quarry, which kind of resembles an old mine shaft. Moppy is an expert at covering his digital tracks. His IP's span the globe and he uses many cyber techniques that even the best trained cyber detectives would never figure out. He learned this skill during training in the U.S. Navy during the first gulf War in 93 against Iraq. The FBI agent John, turns out, no longer works for the FBI and is a convicted felon for being on the take during the John Gotti Era.

The investigation as it churns will scale and turn into a possible turf war with Moppy being at the center of it. At the end of the day the cover up will sink some prominent careers and will end up in prison for drug trafficking, fencing stolen goods, and dealing in illegal weapons sales.

Moppy needs to figure out the gang's next move and who is really behind their operation. At first he was thinking it was a Mexican Cartel. He knew he needed to check in with the precinct and get updated on his other pending investigations. While at the office he overheard a conversation about a gang members interaction with a beat cop on the south side of town. You see Moppy has extraordinary hearing, he can hear conversations through walls, barrier walls, even sound proof studios etc... you get the point. Detective Gleason spoke about the interaction and stated the cop had to shoot the suspect and was now in the hospital. He was in ICU and may not make it. Moppy knew he had to get to the hospital and talk with this suspect before it was too late. He finished his morning briefings, gave the inspector an update on his current cases and headed to South Monroe hospital. This investigation is under the radar because he does not know who is behind the operation. He knows once the case opens up to the public there will be heavy scrutiny on the people involved. Also he is reasonably assured when he puts the leaders in prison it will help him get promoted to a lieutenant which translates into more high-tech toys for his lab.

While at the hospital he changed into some scrubs and portrayed himself as a LPN. He found the admitting chart and went straight to the young man's room. An officer is outside his door standing guard. Moppy needed to make sure his credentials were in order and his story line did not make the officer suspicious. " How are you doing officer Peterman?" Moppy stated in a very low tone. " I am doing just fine,what can I do for you?" the officer stated in an authoritative way. " I need to check his vitals, is he conscious?" Moppy said. "They just checked his blood pressure an hour ago and yes he is conscious" the officer stated. Moppy thought for a moment and said "Oh let be more specific, I need to draw some blood and check his glucose levels." The officer said in a growl "Be my guest just don't be long, I am heading to the café and don't have any relief." Moppy zipped in the room and immediately began to ask Pedro questions, which he found out was the patient's name by looking at the outside chart. Moppy said "who do you work for and how much do you know about the operation?" The patient looked up at Moppy with a dumbfounded look and stated in broken english "you are a nurse why are you asking these questions?" Moppy looked back at the door and said "here is my badge, I am undercover and I need to know who you work for?" If you can give me some names I will make sure you get a lighter sentence. Pedro stated "I am going to be deported so who cares about a trial." Pedro said "If I give you a name they will kill me." Moppy pondered his next move realizing he only had a few minutes before the officer would be in to check on Pedro. "Okay Pedro I understand your situation, the witness protection program offered by the US Marshall's office can protect you" Moppy stated. He is really bluffing just to get something to go on. Pedro leaned into Moppy and said "I think his name is Max and he has a Russian accent." Moppy left the room quickly and sped off looking for more information. He went straight to his lab. He began a massive search for anything Max and Russian related.

Chapter Two

The next day Moppy was traveling down Main street when he noticed the same white box truck. It is parked in front of a meat-packing plant. He noticed the same driver was unloading the same large boxes as before. Moppy didn't hang around, he knew John would be on the lookout. He headed back to his lab and continued the search. Max the name Pedro gave him wasn't really bringing any hits. Moppy began to realize Max was a code name and began to research the ASCOM data center for anything related. Moppy began to realize Max is an interchange term for weapon deployment. He also began to come across documents signed by the city's security director for approval of weapons. Moppy thought to himself "this is going to get ugly really quickly." The next step for him was to map documents to signatures and begin to piece evidence.

The following day at Moppy's morning briefing his lieutenant advised him of some activity the FBI has followed with a hack into the ASCOM data center. Moppy knew he needed to cover his tracks quickly. He sat through two meetings and spoke to some new recruits at the academy. He finished his coffee and twisted pretzel sandwich and went directly to his lab. Moppy began using an advanced method of washing his tracks using a proprietary software developed by the Russians. He was able to get it done quickly and with his firewall setup and IP address redirects he was able to avoid any detection bots sent by the FBI.

Moppy now has a solid lead and is planning to set up surveillance on the gang he now refers to as the MAX cartel. He noticed some key signatures but still could not match them to any local key officials but that would soon change. Moppy rolled up to the same house he had watched earlier this time he went into stealth mode. The GT's windows completely turn black and all the electronic signals the key emits are undetectable. The paint is a special stealth metallic metal that cannot be detected so its like the car is there but invisible. He knows John will be looking out, but this time he is ready. He was able to listen to all conversations and didn't pick up on anything out of the ordinary. On this day there were no cars coming by and the house is locked up tighter than a drum, he needed to get in there to really see what was in those boxes. He finally began to make his move. He parked the Stang a couple blocks down the road and then he scaled his way up the street and went to the back of the home. He picked the lock and went inside. He checked for camera surveillance but cameras are not in use, this was odd due to the nature of the situation. He entered the home and the first room was the kitchen. The home built in the 80's, still has plaid and everything but the kitchen was immaculate. The cabinets were white freshly painted and it had a Hot-Point refrigerator and stove. The Fridge is stocked with beer and nothing else. The freezer has white packs all stacked neatly. No way to know what they were, so Moppy kept looking for evidence, a paper trail anything. As he walked into the living area he noticed a faint odor, smelled like rotten eggs coming from the garage. Once again the living area is untouched and clean. It still had plaid furniture and a huge 36" Sony trinitron tube type TV. He was more interested in what the smell was and not inspecting the rest of the house. He went into the garage and what he discovered was amazing. Moppy thought to himself "How have they been able to keep all of this material under wraps?" It was like a mini weapons lab and began to worry about radiation contamination. He left the home quickly but took a sample of the white bags in the freezer and grabbed a sample of the material in the container that is emitting the foul odor. He immediately took the samples to a lab for testing. Moppy returned to his cave and began to piece this puzzle together. He began to see the same signature on port forwarding documents as he sifted through the data he pulled in the last week. The signature decoded and it is the Port authority director. He immediately realized the Mayors involvement. He knew the only way this gang was developing weapons and selling them overseas was to pay off the authorities.

Chapter Three

Moppy got the lab samples back after three days. The white packs were a mixture of cocaine powder and some mix-ins like baby powder which is typical for retail cocaine. The samples from the containers were of a different matter. The material is to make bombs but with a twist. The lab techs were so concerned after testing and determining the substance they were about to call the special ops team to dispose of the material. Moppy advised them the situation is under control. This would blow his cover and the case abruptly would come to an end without making all the connections.

He has begun to lay low on this weapons and drug case which he refers to as the John Blank Glang. He is covering his tracks. He knows what can happen if he gets found out. Moppy is assigned four new cases involving petty theft and some smaller crimes. He went into his staff meeting as usual and briefed on all new cases pending. There was no mention of this gang which he thought was very odd since they are operating out in the open. He trolled several Pawn Shops for stolen items to no avail. He stopped by the A&F Pawn Shop once again and asked if we had taken in a specific set of tools, and a pendant that is unique and made by a top designer.

Just Keep in mind this is 2005 and the tracking and uploading of tickets was not correct and up to date like in modern times. Today detectives do not troll Pawn Shops, there is no need. We upload all of our tickets to a database which they can search at any given time.

We advised Moppy we had not received any items matching his descriptions. He strolled through the store studying what was on the shelves, tipped his hat and walked out the door. Moppy knew a shop was taking in items and not reporting them, he just needed to find which one and quickly. The four new cases are all similar. They were all B&E's and targeted in the same neighborhood. He had suspicions it was the Blank gang but wanted to nail the politicians and gang leaders and not the thugs who follow orders.

Moppy found some items in one of the stores that matched the descriptions and immediately contacted the victims to find their items. This was a key match by the same woman. Now Moppy has a name and he began to track down this person of interest. Her address is the same as the Blank Gang house. She has pawned items in more than five stores which is common place in these type of scenarios. Now Moppy has a plan of action, first he will arrest the person of interest. The next step will be to question her and see what she knows. She is charged with several felonies. But what he is more concerned about is how this will trigger the leaders to intervene. He has a very small window before she is bonded out and charges will disappear.

Moppy tracked the young woman, which will call her Misty for purposes of anonymity. She was getting her nails done and he noticed a car that fits the description like the one she used while Pawning said items. He pulled in and immediately arrested Misty after questioning her about the items he found earlier and after checking her ID. As he drove her to the station, he was asking questions like who she works for. She seemed to answer most of them without incident. He took Misty into custody and a lawyer was waiting for her, advising Misty not to answer any questions. He really didn't need to go any further. Moppy advised the attorney of the pending charges and she is booked into the system. She was at the hall of Justice for no more than an hour.

Chapter 4

Moppy now has all the evidence he needs to make several arrests, but how was the question? Misty gave him names of her direct reports, which he was able to tie to the port authority director and the Mayor's office. He went back to his cave and began a plan. He realized he needed help, there is only one other agent on the force he trusts and she is an absolute straight arrow. Her name is Maggie Malone and she has been with the force for over twenty years. He called her on a secured line and gave her a heads up on the details. They hatched a plan and knew this was great for their careers. "Maggie this is Moppy, how is it going with the Forge case?" Moppy stated in a low discreet tone. Maggie replied, "It is going great, we are on the verge of making an arrest, Mr Forge is going to testify against the alleged suspects in the inflated inventory scheme of the Forge corporation." "Good, now listen I need some help with this case I'm working on. I need some inside data analyses of documents and signatures. It is on the Blank gang, and I believe the port authority director and the Mayor are behind it. They have been taking large sums of money and putting them in offshore accounts. The gang is selling weapons grade materials to outfits in the Middle East for huge sums of money. Also the gang is dealing drugs locally, breaking and entering homes, securities fraud, racketeering etc.." Moppy stated in a low voice. "How can I be of help without jeopardizing my job and my personal safety?" Maggie said. " Ok this is the plan, I need you go to records and review all the files on John Blank." Moppy stated. "How I am going to do that without being directly involved in the case?" Maggie said. "Just use your persuasion skills and give the clerk an impression you are on the case. " Moppy said. "Ok I will let you know either way in two days." Maggie said in a concerned voice.

Moppy continued his research and surveillance, taking photographs and taking notes in his log. He knows he needs to get the evidence soon before it disappears. This outfit operates with precision just like a corporation. They pay off whoever stands in their way. "Some beat cops have been on the take" Moppy thought out loud. He is not going to waste his energy on them though. He needs to nail the big fish and he knows the consequences if it doesn't happen.

At 10:05 pm the front sensor alarm went off and he knew whatever triggered it was not friendly. Moppy began to check his cameras at first nothing was out-of-place. Then he noticed several images moving across the main door. He knew they had followed him from the station earlier. "These guys have no idea what they are stepping into" Moppy said out loud. He hit the siren system first, which will give a blast that can cause hearing loss. The perps immediately ran back across the entry path but Moppy was waiting for them. He used his tranquilizer darts to sedate them and tied them up. He hauled the both of them to the computer den in the back of the cave. He hid their car and checked both cell phones for tracking. He waited until they woke up and used his lie detector serum for questions. He was able to get more information about the gang's leaders but nothing else. Moppy has a special tool called the Wander which emits a bright light and will make you forget everything that has happened within the last twenty-four hours. He put them back in the car after he drove them over seventy miles from the cave. He destroyed their phones. They awoke with a string of red and blue flashing lights. The officer was at the window signaling to role it down. They could not answer his questions but was able to give proper ID, he let them go with a warning not to park on the side of the road and sleep.

Moppy arrived back at the cave and began to work on his case to charge both the Mayor and Port authority director. He will wait for Maggie's call to tie everything together. The phone rang exactly at 8:37 PM. It was Maggie and she stated "I have some information for you on the Blank case. I have scanned copies of documents signed by the Mayor and Port authority director for purchases of illegal substances made into weapons grade plutonium. They have been using taxpayer dollars to front the money for weapons, drug paraphernalia and bearer bonds. They use the bearer bonds to pay for the materials.

Bearer Bonds are financial instruments that have no tracking information and would be difficult to tie them to an organization or person.

Moppy used Maggie's tip to put together a plan. He is going to bring down the entire operation. He first made sure he had signed documents and images of the Bearer bonds. Moppy thought to himself "this will be devastating to our community but in the long run we will be better off. "

He first sent the copies to the chief of police and advised the chief he is going public with the information. He does not know if the chief is on it but he is going to play it safe. He also contacted his favorite reporter and let her know about his findings. The reporter questioned him for more than an hour about the case. Within minutes of Moppy giving the chief the information the chief resigned from his post and advised the FBI of the impending case. Moppy had no clue the FBI was now investigating him.

The next day upon his arrival at the station for his daily briefing there was a media frenzy out front and he knew it was not going good. He skipped the front entrance and entered the station through the secured parking garage. He turned on local Channel 26 and watched as reporters were breaking the story of the Chief's resignation. He passed two fellow detectives and they ignored him which was not their normal behavior. He peered around the corner and saw two agents at his desk. He slowly walked backwards and left the station. Moppy contacted Maggie to get details of what was happening. The chief implicated Moppy with all the illegal operations of the Blank gang for immunity. The chief knows they will kill him and his family if he rolls over on the Mayor.

Moppy is now a suspect and is under investigation by the FBI. His plan has a few wrinkles now but he will execute. The first move will be to contact the media and then meet with the two FBI agents. He called the local Herald and spoke to a reporter by the name of Heidi. She asked questions and he answered them with no hesitation. She is going to run the story in the afternoon. Moppy needed to leave town for his own safety. He thought to himself "what is going to happen now that all the information on this gang is out for the public to see. The mayor will deny all allegations and point the finger at his subordinates." He was able to get the cave without being followed.

Moppy got a call from Maggie, she said "Moppy the FBI agents are here asking me questions about your involvement in the Blank gangs activities." He said "just tell them the truth and I will meet with soon." He quickly finished his search and called his friend and confident within the FBI. His name is Joe and has been with the organization for twenty years. His Law enforcement career spand's forty years. He advised Joe of the situation about the agents, and all the information he has on the gang's activities. Joe advised Moppy to meet him at a coffee shop about twenty miles outside the city limits. He thought to himself " what if Joe is part of this, man I really need to be careful." He got in the GT and drove as fast as traffic would allow. He arrived fifteen minutes later. He was well armed for a just in case scenario. He saw Joe sitting at a booth by himself and approached slowly. He sat down and Joe greeted him with a smile. Moppy waited to see what Joe was planning. He advised Moppy the two agents were on their way. Moppy knew this was a possibility but he just needed to let it play out. He has all the evidence and proof he needs. Joe made small talk while waiting on the agents. The two men arrived and walked over to the booth they were sitting at. Moppy's heart was beating fast now but hid his uneasiness. The agents made small talk with introductions but got to the point quickly. They advised Moppy his superiors were rolling over on him. They have implicated him and made it out as him being the gang leader. Their intuition was Moppy was not involved but they needed to follow through. Moppy answered their questions and advised them he has proof of the Mayor Geldi's and Port Director Misano's involvement. He has signed shipping statements and pictures of the Gangs movements with no law enforcement involvement. Essentially the Gang has moved drugs and weapons in plain view for several years. The agents were taking notes and asking questions for more than an hour. Moppy gave them copies of all the documents on a flash drive. The meeting convened and the two agents left. Joe and Moppy continued their discussion without incident. Moppy left and was planning to lay low at the cave until the story ran. It was going to make it tougher for the FBI to investigate the police department and the entire staff at the port Authority.

Moppy was followed as he headed back to the cave so he took a detour up around a series of hills and through a pass. He stopped at a ranch where he knows the terrain very well. He lost the tail quickly and circled back to the city and then headed out west. He was not going to take any chances. He was heading to San Francisco and then on to the mountains for at least a week. He stayed in the Latin district and then followed the trail up to Yosemite. He watched the local news as the story broke about the Mayor. Reporters were everywhere and he was getting anxious. He called Maggie for an update but she did not answer.

Moppy began to think about how all of this played out and nothing went according to plan but in the end he still has put a dent into the operations of the Blank gang. He knew they were powerful but had no idea the involvement with the City's top Brass.

Just then his phone rang and it was Maggie, she stated " Moppy this place is going to hell in a hand-basket. There are reporters here out in front of the entrance. Your name has come up multiple times and they are awaiting the chief for an official statement. Some of the staff said the chief has already left through the privacy entrance." Moppy replied "I have already spoken to the FBI agents and gave them all the information I have obtained. I am going to leave town for a while, take a leave of absence if you will. The leaders of the gang will have their thugs looking for me, but if they come across my path they will undoubtedly meet their demise." Maggie understood and left it at that.

Moppy traveled to the Redwood forest and camped in a remote area. He rented a storage unit to keep his Mustang safe. Moppy rented a car under an assumed name with a fake passport. He was safe for the time being. He kept an eye on the news and watched as the Chief of Police, the Mayor and Port authority director were all arrested by the FBI and charged with drug trafficking, racketeering, tax evasion, collusion and securities fraud.

Moppy now is on the radar and will be a target for the rest of his life. He is a skilled detective with powers that are not of this earth and he will meet many diabolical criminals in upcoming stories so stay tuned.

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