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Today we turn back the clock and Detective Dan shares why “Bait and Switch” from season 2 is his favorite episode.

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Dan [00:00:05] This is Detective Dan, and I was racking my brain trying to figure out what was my favorite case, because I’ve got so many that we’ve featured on this podcast. My mind kept going back to Bait and Switch, which was Season 2 Episode 8. The reason why that case sticks out to me is because this is right before I became a detective, but I was on patrol. There were a lot of aspects to this case that I found really interesting and fascinating. Most of all, I was about to become a detective when this case happened. So, I was on patrol and I got to respond to this call in a patrol capacity, and be there right from the very beginning. This victim is shot in the chest and how he survives this wound is amazing to me. And I credit to Detective Justin who was on patrol at the time for, I think, saving this victim’s life.

[00:01:00] And then, responding to the end of this car chase, and working with my brother, who was a detective at the time, working together with him as we try to find these two bad guys that committed this robbery. Also, working with Justin as he responded with my old canine partner, who is now his partner, Fido. Having an outside agency officer with us and us working seamlessly, tactically, was really rewarding to me, let me know that we’re all out there training and doing right things, and communicating. There are a lot of different aspects to this case. I’ve listened to it multiple times and I’ve always enjoyed listening to it, and it puts me right back in that scene. So, I hope you enjoy it.

Justin: [00:01:55] I’m out front and I’m 12 feet behind this German Shepherd that’s excited. If someone gets shot, I’m probably the first one. This is the moment here, the next couple seconds are going to decide how this goes. If something bad’s going to happen, it’s going to happen now.

Yeardley: [00:02:14] I’m Yeardley.

Zibby: [00:02:15] And I’m Zibby, and we’re fascinated by true crime.

Yeardley: [00:02:18] So, we invited our friends, Detectives Dan and Dave.

Zibby: [00:02:21] To sit down with us and share their most interesting cases.

Dan: [00:02:25] I’m Dan.

Dave: [00:02:26] And I’m Dave.

Dan: [00:02:27] We’re identical twins.

Dave: [00:02:28] And we’re detectives in Small Town, USA.

Dan: [00:02:31] Dave investigates sex crimes and child abuse.

Dave: [00:02:33] Dan investigates violent crimes. And together we’ve worked on hundreds of cases including assaults, robberies, murders, burglaries, sex abuse, and child abuse, names, locations and certain details of these cases have been altered to protect the privacy of the victims and their families. While we realize that some of our listeners may be familiar with these cases, we hope you’ll join us and continuing to protect the true identities of those involved out of respect for what they’ve been through.


Yeardley: [00:03:09] Today, on Small Town Dicks, we have our favorite twin detectives, Detective Dan.

Dan: [00:03:15] Thanks for inviting me back.

Yeardley: [00:03:17] [laughs] Detective Dave.

Dave: [00:03:18] Pleasure to see you.

Yeardley: [00:03:20] And our very special guest, Detective Justin.

Justin: [00:03:23] Glad to be here.

Yeardley: [00:03:24] So happy you’re here. Justin, tell us where you picked this case up.

Justin: [00:03:29] This case happened several years ago. I was working regular patrols, driving a marked patrol car around and we get a call of a shooting that happened at the local Walmart in our small town. There was a shooting victim down in the parking lot and several bystanders, customers trying to give him first aid. Myself and another officer were pretty close to the store and so we get there in a hurry and find this guy laying in the parking lot in a parking stall that didn’t have a car parked in it.

Yeardley: [00:03:55] Is this daytime, like broad daylight?

Justin: [00:03:57] Yeah, it’s early afternoon. It’s a busy day, weekend, people shopping, and there’s people everywhere.

Yeardley: [00:04:02] And a guy’s just shot in the parking lot?

Justin: [00:04:05] Yeah, laying there in the middle of a parking stall and a gaggle of people around him. Some trying to help, some not knowing what to do. I have never in my 10 years of doing this seen somebody that on first glance looks so dead as this gentleman, Tommy, did when we got there. I couldn’t tell if he was breathing from where I parked my car and started walking up to him. But he had this gray, dead look to him, almost zombie gray. It was unnerving to say the least when we got there.

Zibby: [00:04:30] Can I ask how old he is?

Justin: [00:04:31] He was younger, late, late teens, early 20s. He’s laying there, and based on the amount of attention he was getting from the bystanders, it was clear that he wasn’t dead yet. He was just looking that way and probably headed that direction. So, myself and the other officers get over to him and take over the first aid. First aid as you learn at Red Cross stuff is band aid, splinting arms and stuff. This is like trauma, try to keep this guy breathing care. We rip clothes off and he has a bullet hole right in the center of his chest. You couldn’t center it anymore on his body. Right at the base of his breastbone is a relatively large bullet hole. I focus on that one while my partner finds another bullet hole under his armpit. At first, as we’re trying to get close off and find where else he’s hurt, I put my knee over his chest to just put pressure on that center wound. The first time, I noticed he was conscious and still truly alive was when he complained about the pain my knee caused on his chest, trying to put some pressure on that.

Zibby: [00:05:30] The pain of the knee on his chest, except he wasn’t feeling the pain of the bullet holes?

Justin: [00:05:35] Yeah.

Zibby: [00:05:36] Is that typical?

Justin: [00:05:37] Everything’s typical in that situation. They may feel that, they may not feel anything. You would think that the bullet wound that is killing him would be what his mind’s on and it wasn’t until I put my knee on his chest that he expressed any kind of pain.

Dave: [00:05:49] I think when you’re in that situation, that’s actually a welcome thing to hear that this guy’s complaining of pain, that he’s still there enough mentally to be able to voice that.

Justin: [00:05:59] Absolutely. And it would confirm to my mind, “Okay, this guy isn’t dead,” but he’s still not looking good. We checked for other injuries, we find one to his left hand where it looks like bullet may have gone through his hand, but that’s minor compared to what we’re dealing with his chest. I take my knee off his chest and have thicker patrol style gloves on and end up sticking my thumb through that hole in his chest, like half of my thumb’s inside his chest cavity.

Yeardley: [00:06:23] Oh, my God!

Zibby: [00:06:24] Specifically to stop the blood?

Justin: [00:06:26] There wasn’t a ton of blood, any injury to the chest that penetrates the chest wall is going to cause breathing issues and lung flow and affect their ability to breathe. There’s obviously some internal bleeding going on here that we’re incapable of fixing out there. It’s a surgical thing. But you have to reseal that chest wall in order for his lungs and diaphragm to allow him to breathe.

Yeardley: [00:06:47] Oh, like having a hole in your straw if you don’t plug that hole?

Justin: [00:06:51] Right, exactly. You see it on TV, few things I’ve seen in my career, that’s just like kind of the movie stuff. The paramedics get there, and I ride to the hospital with him. And the entire time, I saw my thumb in his chest, and I’m thinking, “Oh, the paramedics are going to take over at some point, but they’re going to do the same thing I’m doing and so they’re doing other things.” Eventually they put a dressing over it and relieve me and then do the needle decompression of his chest to relieve the air that is built up around his lungs.

Yeardley: [00:07:18] What is that?

Justin: [00:07:19] It’s a giant syringe is a handle and then a long, giant gauge hypodermic needle and actually puncture his chest wall to vent the air that has gotten between the chest cavity and his lungs.

Yeardley: [00:07:30] Oh.

Zibby: [00:07:30] Oh, that sounds like a dream come true.

Yeardley: [00:07:32] Oh, my God!

Dave: [00:07:34] Called a pneumothorax.

Justin: [00:07:35] Tension pneumothorax. Yeah, your lungs are designed to hold the air, not the area around them. If that gets compromised, you’ve got to do something to relieve that pressure. And so his biggest threat at that point was almost suffocation from his lungs not being able to breathe anymore.

Zibby: [00:07:50] Really?

Justin: [00:07:52] Bleeding still a problem, but that suffocation is happening to by his own body being compromised.

Zibby: [00:07:57] I’m assuming you were trained to know to stick your thumb in the hole.

Justin: [00:08:02] I can honestly say I was never told, “Hey, if this happens, stick your thumb in it.”

Zibby: [00:08:05] Because it’s so specific.

Justin: [00:08:06] But it just fit. It turned out to be, I think, a .45-caliber handgun that was used in the shooting and roughly a half inch diameter and the bullet, and my thumb in the glove made a good tight seal on that hole.

Yeardley: [00:08:17] Since there wasn’t an inordinate amount of blood pouring from that hole, I feel I probably wouldn’t have known to plug it with one of my digits.

Justin: [00:08:26] Yeah, fortunately, in our agency, we still do first aid Red Cross stuff, but we send a lot of our patrol guys to, actually put on by the military, a Combat Casualty Care Course, where they talk about more of these type of injuries, which is what we see and what helps save people. Broken arms, hurt fingers. Burns are bad but they’re usually not life threatening at the moment where stuff like this is the big-time stuff, and I don’t think there’s a Red Cross course that covers bullet hole to the chest.

Dave: [00:08:54] Tommy, is he aware that he’s expiring?

Justin: [00:08:57] No. I mean he’s semiconscious. I’d like to think he knows that something bad has happened.

Yeardley: [00:09:02] Does he know he’s been shot?

Justin: [00:09:04] I don’t think so at this point.

Yeardley: [00:09:05] Interesting.

Justin: [00:09:06] I think he knows something isn’t right, but I think he’s in this semi-conscious in and out state, eyes open, eyes closed and doing what he could keep breathing at that point.

Yeardley: [00:09:15] So, you’re on your way to the hospital with him. Where’s the suspect?

Justin: [00:09:19] We don’t know.

Yeardley: [00:09:21] So, then what?

Justin: [00:09:22] In the ambulance we ride, we go to our hospital. I didn’t realize how bumpy of a ride that is. And for those medics to be able to do what they’re doing as this thing’s bouncing around was kind of eye opening.

Zibby: [00:09:31] With your thumb and his bullet wound.

Justin: [00:09:32] Yeah, and the wound. My goal at the hospital is to gather evidence or any kind of information I can from him. And it’s hard, especially with this kind of injury because the hospital does what I call the Trauma Dance. The worse off someone is, the more this dance is going on. It’s not panic, but it’s just constant motion of people, nurses, doctors, staff coming in and out and doing this and that and I don’t get a whole lot of additional information from him. A short time later, I learn that another agency has found what we’ve developed as a suspect vehicle in this case and actually got in a vehicle pursuit with it in our town.

Yeardley: [00:10:09] So, you think the guy who shot Tommy is now in this vehicle?

Justin: [00:10:15] Yes.

Yeardley: [00:10:15] Okay.

Zibby: [00:10:16] Dan, I know at some point you arrived on the crime scene. When was that? Was Justin still there? Or did Detective Justin take off at that point?

Dan: [00:10:22] I heard the initial dispatch and knew that this was any gunshot wound, obviously is going to be a big deal. As I’m responding, dispatch is relaying things to us and I knew that we had a suspect vehicle of the departed on the street that this Walmart is on, Blue Ford Thunderbird. As I’m coming into the area, I’m looking for that car, I don’t see it. I come into the Walmart parking lot and the row where the shooting happened and where our victim is, is blocked off by this train of shopping carts. As I’m coming in, there’s a guy standing by there, and he’s the gatekeeper. He sees me coming in with lights and sirens. He moves shopping carts out of the way, and I go screaming through this little gap.

Zibby: [00:11:03] Was he just a civilian?

Dan: [00:11:05] Yeah.

Zibby: [00:11:05] Awesome.

Dan: [00:11:06] I go over and I look at this victim. Well, Justin and the other officer are caring for him, and my first thought was, “That’s a dead man. He’s going to die.”

Zibby: [00:11:14] Really?

Dan: [00:11:15] No doubt in my mind that guy was going to die.

Yeardley: [00:11:18] How long had it been between your time he was shot and the time you guys arrived, and Justin put his thumb in the bullet hole?

Dan: [00:11:25] I’m saying a couple minutes.

Yeardley: [00:11:26] Oh, my gosh!

Justin: [00:11:27] Yeah, minutes, maybe.

Dan: [00:11:29] And they were they were so close by that they got there in record time. I was coming from farther out and so it took me longer, but they did a great job.

Zibby: [00:11:39] Okay, so the victim is being tended to, obviously there’s no suspect in custody yet. What’s your next move?

Dave: [00:11:46] We start contacting witnesses and there’s quite a crowd around, and everybody wants to add something to the investigation. They want to tell us information and you have to filter that. But one guy that comes up to me, named Jeff, says, “That’s my friend who got shot.” I got to talk to that guy. The first thing he tells me is, “We were here to buy medicine and it went bad.”

Yeardley: [00:12:08] Medicine?

Dave: [00:12:09] Yeah.

Dan: [00:12:10] At Walmart?

Dave: [00:12:11] Yes.

Yeardley: [00:12:11] That seems vague.

Dave: [00:12:12] Well, I quickly find out that they were they’re buying marijuana, six pounds of it for $8,000.

Zibby: [00:12:19] In front of Walmart or something?

Dave: [00:12:20] In the parking lot, which is a common place for drug deals to go down.

Yeardley: [00:12:20] Really?

Dave: [00:12:24] Shopping center parking lots.

Yeardley: [00:12:26] And this is before marijuana is legal, obviously.

Dave: [00:12:28] Yes. Small amounts of marijuana, you encounter it so often, it’s not a big deal to us. But six pounds is significant, that’s a lot of marijuana.

Yeardley: [00:12:38] Yeah.

Zibby: [00:12:39] That sounds like a lot. When you met Jeff, and he said, “Hey, we were here to buy medicine and something went wrong,” was it within that conversation that you made the discovery it was marijuana because he just wasn’t–

Dave: [00:12:52] Almost immediately.

Zibby: [00:12:53] Okay. And did you call him out or did he know that he just sounded like a dum-dum?

Dave: [00:12:58] I said, “Medicine?” He’s like, “Yeah, we’re buying weed.”

Zibby: [00:13:03] Okay. [chuckles]

Yeardley: [00:13:04] Did your eyebrows go up when you said how much and he said eight pounds. You’re like, “Shit, dude.”

Dan: [00:13:10] Six pounds, that’s a lot. Yeah. When he said medicine, I knew he was buying weed. Everybody that we run into on the street, you ask them, “Hey, you have anything in your pockets that I need to know about?” They say, “Well, I have my medicine in there.”

Yeardley: [00:13:23] I see.

Dave: [00:13:23] Does Jeff tell you– I’m guessing he gives you an idea of how many suspects, where he was in relation to the shooting to give you those kinds of details so you can start to piece together what exactly happened in the parking lot?

Dan: [00:13:38] What I learned from Jeff is they are meeting with these two suspects who arrive in this blue Ford Thunderbird. The suspects hop into Jeff and Tommy’s SUV to do this deal and they have a large duffel bag with them, which Jeff and Tommy are assuming is the weed. They feel the weight of the bag and it feels appropriate weight wise, but before they can inspect the bag, look inside, the suspect next to Tommy in the backseat pulls out a gun and demands the eight grand from him.

Zibby: [00:14:06] What?

Yeardley: [00:14:06] Oh, shit!

Dan: [00:14:07] Yeah. Tommy’s having the “oh, shit,” moment, “Oh, we’re getting robbed.” Tommy tries to run like open the door and take off running, but the suspect fires his gun and it strikes Tommy in the chest. Jeff in the front seat, same time while this is happening, feels a pain in his ear and he thinks he’s getting hit by a stun gun in the ear, while Tommy’s getting robbed and shot in the backseat.

Yeardley: [00:14:32] Oh, God!

Zibby: [00:14:33] What a mess. Now he had two gunshot wounds. So, was he shot while he was running away as well do you think?

Dan: [00:14:39] It was one gunshot, I think, we found out and it went into his chest. It came out over here-

Zibby: [00:14:45] Under his armpit.

Dan: [00:14:46] -under his armpit, and then hit his hand.

Yeardley: [00:14:48] Oh, my God!

Zibby: [00:14:49] One bullet.

Dan: [00:14:50] One bullet.

Yeardley: [00:14:51] So, the bad guy, does he have a name?

Dan: [00:14:54] Mark is our shooter and his cohort is named Casey.

Yeardley: [00:14:59] I have a question for you. Why does Mark, who shoots Tommy in the backseat, say he wants the money before Tommy checks the bag, why is that?

Dave: [00:15:09] Because Mark, our shooter, knows that when that bag opens, there’s no weed in that bag. That’s a bunch of rolled-up towels. Yeah, seems he wasn’t the most honest salesman.

Zibby: [00:15:20] Did he get the money?

Dave: [00:15:21] He got the money.

Zibby: [00:15:23] He got the money and still shot.

Dave: [00:15:25] Yeah.

Yeardley: [00:15:26] Wow.

Justin: [00:15:27] The bag being empty is significant from our standpoint, because it tells us later on in the investigation that it was a robbery. It was a rip-off in the beginning. They never had any intention of actually selling marijuana, which they can’t do anyway, but they were going there to take these guys money.

Zibby: [00:15:39] It seems so extreme, why not just fill a bunch of big bags with oregano?

Yeardley: [00:15:47] [laughs]

Zibby: [00:15:47] I’m just thinking like a criminal here. And then they look at it, it buys you a little time. You don’t have to shoot anybody.

Dan: [00:15:54] Well, the good weed that we come across, you can throw it in a bag, you can throw it in a sealed jar, the good stuff, you can still smell it. So, it surprises me that when the bag got into the car, they couldn’t smell it anyway. It’s really hard to cover up that odor.

Zibby: [00:16:09] So, I’m sure they were panicking from the get, like, “This is not really going to last.”

Dan: [00:16:13] And I think that’s why things happen so fast inside that SUV. It was, “I got to get in here and get out as fast as possible.”

Zibby: [00:16:20] All right. Now, thanks to Jeff, you’ve got a better picture of what went down and how Tommy ended up shot and dying in the parking lot of Walmart.

Dan: [00:16:27] Yeah. The medics have taken off by now, I’ve talked to this guy, I know that we have detectives on the way. And I tell this, Jeff, “Hey, you need to stand by, we have to get more information from you.” He does point out to me, the vehicle that they arrived in and tells me that the suspect vehicle, this blue Ford Thunderbird, had parked just to the side of them. So, I go over to this vehicle that they had arrived in and I start noticing things of evidentiary value. I see a blood spot on the ground. It’s dried, but you can tell it’s fresh. It hasn’t been on the ground long. And this is a hot August day, so the blood dried fairly quickly. As I’m walking around the car by the rear tire of this SUV that they’d arrived in, I have to do a double take when I first look at it, I’m like, “That’s bone. That’s a piece of bone.” And it’s like this pink fleshy color but it’s not bleached white, like bones you see in your science class in high school.

Yeardley: [00:17:27] Like it hadn’t been out there very long.

Dan: [00:17:30] Yeah. And it’s still got some flesh attached to it and everything. And I said, “Well, that’s–“

Yeardley: [00:17:35] Is that part of his hand?

Dan: [00:17:37] Part of his hand.

Yeardley: [00:17:38] Ah!

Dan: [00:17:39] I go around to the other side where the suspected part and I find a fresh cigarette butt, I don’t know if that’s going to be important in this case. But we’re going to save that anyway, just in case. In case this is a whodunnit, at least maybe we have some evidence.

Zibby: [00:17:52] May I ask? Do you put markers in front of those things? Or do you just scoop them right up and put them in a bag or something else?

Dan: [00:17:59] I didn’t have the order numbers from you see on TV where it says like one through whatever. I use my business cards, folded them, tented my business cards, and put them over each piece of evidence.

Zibby: [00:18:12] So cool. I’m really glad I asked.

Yeardley: [00:18:14] That’s so clever.

Dan: [00:18:15] Just because we don’t want to lose that stuff.

Yeardley: [00:18:17] Did you number those business cards?

Dan: [00:18:20] No, our watch commander was on scene by then, and I said, “Hey, make sure you let the detectives know that I marked those pieces of evidence with my business cards.” Right about that time, we hear from our dispatch that our state police, neighboring agency, is in a pursuit with this blue Ford Thunderbird.

Yeardley: [00:18:39] Which is the bad guys’ car?

Dan: [00:18:41] Yes. And it’s in our city, like Justin said. I get in my car and off we go, off to the races.

Zibby: [00:18:48] Because you’re going to the pursuit?

Dan: [00:18:49] Yeah. Because we’ve got to catch these guys.

Zibby: [00:18:52] You’re going after Mark and Casey?

Dan: [00:18:53] Right.  

Zibby: [00:19:05] Okay, so Justin, you hear that there’s a vehicle pursuit now. Do you leave the hospital and join the pursuit just like Dan?

Justin: [00:19:13] So, I rode with the paramedics in the ambulance and leaving my patrol car back at the crime scene taped off and stuff with my canine partner in the back of it.

Zibby: [00:19:21] And what’s your canine partner’s name?

Justin: [00:19:24] Fido.

Yeardley and Zibby: [00:19:25] Fido.

Dave: [00:19:26] That’s my old dog.

Justin: [00:19:28] Yeah. So, hand me down from Detective Dan. And he’s miles away at the scene, and I’m at the hospital without a car, and they’re in a car chase. And, yeah, I’m the only canine working and there’s the problem there. So, they send another patrol officer to the hospital to take me back to my car and my dog. And then, by this time the pursuit had ended, and the suspects had run from the car. Both Mark and Casey had taken off. At this point, I think our detectives are starting to trickle in from getting call out about just the shooting aspect of it to help investigate that. So, we’re starting to get a lot of resources here for a weekend. Happened right around our shift change, so we have two shifts of officers that kind of overlap, we’re fat and happy right now with the staffing numbers we have. People run, the first thing we try to do is set a perimeter to contain them. And then it’s my job to come in with Fido and find them in that perimeter and use the dog to locate them.

Yeardley: [00:20:24] And Dave, what was your role in this because you’re sitting over there nodding knowingly?

Dave: [00:20:29] I remember getting called by Sergeant Dave, and said, “Hey, we’ve got a shooting at Walmart. We need you to come in.” He mentioned that this pursuit had ended in this neighborhood on the west side of our town. So, I drove to where the suspect vehicle was parked, and started looking around, talking to neighbors, “Hey, did you see anybody leave this car?” One of the neighbors, the house where they parked, he says, “Hey, I saw two guys. They took off running west from my house, but one turned left, the other one turned right and I lost sight of them.” I remember at that time, Justin and Fido were there, Dan was there, and we had at least three other agencies. Our sheriff’s office, state police in the neighboring agency, had all kind of arrived to set up a nice perimeter.

Zibby: [00:21:21] That’s a lot for a small town.

Dave: [00:21:23] We get a lot of cooperation from other agencies and it’s mutual aid. I think everyone recognized, “Hey, we’ve got a shooting.” I’m certain every law enforcement officer in the county was looking for this blue Ford Thunderbird.

Yeardley: [00:21:36] Is it a stolen car?

Dave: [00:21:37] No.

Yeardley: [00:21:38] Oh.

Dave: [00:21:39] It’s registered to Casey. I remember speaking to this neighbor that saw these guys take off and he makes a note, he says, “One of the guys had a lot of tattoos on his forearms.” I pull up Facebook on my phone, and I look up Casey on Facebook, and I immediately notice he’s got sleeve tattoos.

Zibby: [00:21:56] Oh, my God!

Yeardley: [00:21:58] It’s fascinating to me that these criminals all have Facebook pages just like regular people.

Dave: [00:22:03] It’s one of the greatest tools in law enforcement, honestly. We use it all the time.

Yeardley: [00:22:09] Yeah.

Dave: [00:22:10] Wow.

Yeardley: [00:22:10] It seems so obvious, hide better.

Dave: [00:22:12] Well, social media is out there. Everyone loves attention. So, they are putting everything about their life out on social media, so use it to your advantage. I think this is around the time that we started thinking Casey is going to be one of the guys we need to be looking for, and we’ve got to figure out who the other guy is.

Yeardley: [00:22:31] Are they frequent fliers, as you say, guys that you’ve encountered before?

Dave: [00:22:36] I hadn’t dealt with either of them. I had never heard their names. So, I’m unfamiliar with them. I didn’t get the feeling other people would go, “Oh, yeah, that’s Casey.”

Yeardley: [00:22:44] So, no record?

Justin: [00:22:45] They had history, but nothing that would make them stand out to any one of us.

Yeardley: [00:22:50] What’s the difference, history versus a record?

Dave: [00:22:52] These guys are budding frequent fliers. They’ve got some history, they’ve got some arrests here and there, but they’re not somebody that you would immediately associate with a name and a face. They’re working their way up. They’re relatively young. They’re going to get there at some point, but they’re not guys that we would have immediately said, “Oh, hey, I bet these two guys are involved. I recognize that vehicle and I know this guy drives it.”

Zibby: [00:23:19] You know who you’re looking for with Casey, because you figured out the tattoo thing, looked him up on the Facebook, but Mark, you have no actual visual that you know you’re looking for?

Dave: [00:23:28] Correct. We’re heavily reliant on this perimeter and the canine to do the heavy lifting for this case, and that’s where Justin is such a valuable commodity and his dog, Fido. Once we get the canine into the area, it’s kind of hurry up and wait, hold this perimeter, make sure nobody gets in or out.

Zibby: [00:23:49] That must be difficult to set up parameters in a suburban neighborhood where people may be coming home from work or need to go run an errand or pick up a kid from school and they really insist on getting in and out.

Dave: [00:24:01] And we allow that, “Well, hey, where do you live?” “Yeah, I’m just going right down there. My house is the third one on the left.” “All right, go there. Go inside. If you see anybody in your backyard, give us a call.”

Zibby: [00:24:12] Okay.

Dave: [00:24:14] We always have the looky-loos who will come out. You’ve got a dog in the area, they’re on scent, or we’re looking to find somebody, but everybody wants to see what the police are doing. So, they come out and they start asking questions, and they start meandering and wandering in the neighborhood. That is counterproductive to what we’re trying to do.

Zibby: [00:24:32] Oh, right. I was just watching some new program about guys who chase crimes in order to capture footage for the news. Most of them have police radio. Do you encounter that as well when you’re setting up perimeters, does just the media swarm in?

Dave: [00:24:47] We don’t have stringers. I’ve seen that show that you’re talking about. It’s on Netflix. Great show, by the way. We don’t have stringers here because it’s kind of a small area, but certainly our media has scanners, our channels for our department and our neighboring department are all encrypted, so you can’t pick that up. But they can pick up the medic units. So, they’ll be able to zero in on, “Hey, something’s happening.” Plus, we have a local Facebook page where they post everything about crime and what’s happening in our local area. And sure enough, within minutes, you’ll have somebody post, “Hey, tons of cop cars going down this road, anyone know what’s going on?” And then, there’s a thread of 100 comments about what’s happening.

Yeardley: [00:25:30] And that social media page for the community is not run by your department?

Dave: [00:25:36] It is not.

Zibby: [00:25:37] Fido is in the mix. How does this go down?

Justin: [00:25:41] This is a canine handler’s dream at this point. We’ve gotten in a car chase. I know we’re looking for bad guys that were involved in a shooting. I know based on what I hear on the radio, as I’m getting back Fido into my car that there are cops everywhere. This is probably the best perimeter I’ve ever had on a dog call. In the back of my mind, I know it’s on me to find these guys. Everyone’s waiting. We don’t have cops going around looking because they want to keep it pristine for the dogs. So, everyone’s just waiting on me, and so–

Yeardley: [00:26:09] No pressure.

Justin: [00:26:10] Yeah, exactly. I say, “I hope I perform on this one. I hope Fido is having a good day.” We get over there and I learned that one of the suspects from the car, Mark, was last seen going down an alley that’s pretty close to where the car ends up at the end of this pursuit. Start with what we know. And so, myself Detective Dan, Detective Dave, the trooper and Fido start heading that way and get to the entrance to this alley. This isn’t a well-traveled alley. It’s overgrown. There’s blackberries, you couldn’t drive through it. I don’t think you could walk all the way through it if you wanted to, it’s so thick with brush as you get farther off the road.

Yeardley: [00:26:42] Really?

Justin: [00:26:43] I mean, it’s a mess. It starts with chest high grass, and then the blackberries start, and the bushes started I’m sure there was a mattress and stuff dumped back there, too, deeper in the bushes because it’s an alleyway, it’s what people do with them. As soon as we get to the entrance to that alley, Fido takes his nose, puts it to the ground and starts pulling on the leash. I’d worked him long enough and trained with him that there’s no doubt in my mind Fido smells the scent of this guy we’re looking for. Fortunately, we probably make it 50 feet into the alleyway. Fido’s head comes up, which tells me he’s not smelling the scent on the ground anymore, but he starts sniffing around in the air. His nose is high, he’s breathing, he’s excited, he’s dancing around. It’s a weird thing to see these big bad police dogs and he’s giddy. Their scent, he smells it, it’s in the air, it’s close.

[00:27:29] I know having Detective Dan with me that he’s seen this firsthand, so he knows. I know Detective Dave knows because he’s been around the dogs, and Fido, and been on these things. The trooper picks up on it because we’re all getting excited. Rather than proceeding further into this brushy area, I make what we call a canine announcement. “Police department with a canine, anyone in the alley need identify yourself. It’s going to be (unintelligible). with a dog and you may get bit.” Give them that opportunity to say something, take off running maybe. I remember I had a diamond triangle-type formation. I’m upfront holding the leash and I’m 12-15 feet behind Fido with Dan on one side and I think the trooper on the other, and Dave’s a little bit behind us. They’ve got guns out and are ready in case something happens.

Zibby: [00:28:14] You are wearing a bulletproof vest?

Justin: [00:28:16] I am.

Zibby: [00:28:16] Because everyone knows there’s a gun that’s been involved. Okay.

Justin: [00:28:20] I do have a vest on, but I’m out front and I’m 12 feet behind this German Shepherd that’s excited. And so, I’m relying on these guys. I make that announcement and almost immediately, “Okay, okay, okay,” from the bushes and we get a voice. And then everything gets ratcheted up just a little bit more but it’s like, “Okay, now we’re talking to somebody. We know somebody there for sure, not just Fido’s actions.” I think again, I tell him, “Hey, you need to come out, show us your hands, show us your hands.” This is the moment here and the next couple seconds are going to decide how this goes. If something bad’s going to happen, it’s going to happen now. We challenge him, as we call it, and he makes a choice to follow commands and surrenders to us.

Zibby: [00:29:02] I’m so struck by your description of that moment in time where if something bad is going to happen, it’s going to happen right now. I can’t imagine what that kind of adrenaline does to someone, and yet the way you describe it is you slow it down enough to be cognitive of the fact that, “If something is going to happen, if my life is in danger, this is the moment.”

Justin: [00:29:25] In my mind I’m going through, “Okay, if I hear crashing through the brush, what am I going to do?” In my mind, I was going to send Fido to go bite whatever it is that was running from us.  If we start getting shot at, what am I going to do? I don’t have my gun out, I know these guys are there. And that plan was to grab Fido, pull him back to me, and just get down on the ground and let these guys take care of things.

Zibby: [00:29:46] You consider these things, as it’s all happening, you’re running through the different scenarios?

Justin: [00:29:50] Yeah, it’s all going through my mind at once. He comes out, show us his hands, disappears. He won’t come out but says something. I mean, all of them. I have an answer for each thing I can foresee him doing as it’s happening real time.

Dave: [00:30:02] And we’ve all worked enough together where we can actually look at each other and have an idea of what we’re all thinking. The bad thing about this alleyway that we’re in is, we’ve talked about the funnel. This is a funnel. There’s a six-foot fence on both sides of us. It’s probably 12 to 15 feet wide at the most. And it’s overgrown, so the suspect knows we’re coming, but we can’t see him, but he knows where we are and we know he’s armed. He’s got concealment everywhere. I wouldn’t say he’s got cover. We can’t see him. He can literally ambush all four of us in this alley and we’re really at a disadvantage at this point.

Zibby: [00:30:44] That is so intense. This might be a little too personal, but in that moment, is there ever a minute in your mind where you consider the worst-case scenario, being shot and your life, your family flashes before your eyes?

Justin: [00:31:00] There’s absolutely a moment where it’s like if someone gets shot, I’m probably the first one and hopefully my vest catches it, and the thing in the back of my mind that I knew, and especially working not just other officers, but the guys I know and worked with well, I knew they were there, and they were going to handle it from there if something did happen. I knew, yeah, it’s good and bad, this could be a bad day. But it’s what we signed up for.

Yeardley: [00:31:21] Holy shit!

Zibby: [00:31:23] That’s so wild.

Dave: [00:31:24] We had a pretty eventful day yesterday. We did a drug search warrant on a house. And then, last night dealing with an armed robbery suspect who’s in a hotel room and we’re approaching that room, and just like you had the moment, twice yesterday, where I said, “If something’s going to happen, it’s going to be within the next few seconds, and this could suck really bad.” There’s definite pucker factor, as you’re approaching those situations. I remember walking up to that house yesterday, and I hate doors, and I hate windows. And I’m standing in front of the door thinking, “If I start seeing holes coming through that door, this is going to suck, I’ve got nowhere to go.” So, that alleyway was a lot like that.

Zibby: [00:32:05] And you know the suspect has no problem shooting somebody.

Dave: [00:32:08] Right.

Zibby: [00:32:09] When you came in this morning, you relayed the story of the case you worked last night. I got choked up and had to walk out for a second come back in, because you also told me that after you had that guy in custody, he said that he had every intention of shooting the cops. And that was just a moment in time where if two or three other decisions had been made other than what happened. You could have been shot at and that’s insane. And I think it’s a reality that we see on television, we can hear about, we sensationalize it. But sitting across from you human beings and hearing about this aspect of your work, it hits me on a whole other real intense level. I can’t imagine.

Dave: [00:32:52] I think people don’t understand in these situations that suspects that we deal with, they don’t announce their intent by verbalizing it. They don’t say, “I am going to shoot you.” We go based on actions and compliance. You’ve heard us before talk about this. Compliance is the biggest thing in these situations. Luckily, in this situation, the guy in the alley is complying. That could have gone sideways very quickly, as well as the two situations we had yesterday. We consider that every time we approach a location or suspect.

Yeardley: [00:33:38] Hey, Small Town Fam, how you doing? If you like what you’re hearing, and you want a little more of Small Town Dicks crew, then consider joining us over on Patreon, where we post specially curated, can’t be heard anywhere else content. Like this week, Detective Dan tells us a story of the time he was dispatched to a naked man call. Yeah, you don’t want to miss that. Also, supporting us for just $5 a month on Patreon, basically the price of a pumpkin spice latte, gives us the resources we need to go out and find more dedicated detectives from around the world to tell us their incredible stories. And last but not least, you become a member of our amazing Small Town Super Fam. If you like the sound of all of that, then please go to when you’re done listening to this episode and join us. We’d love to have you. Either way, thank you in advance for being a fan, you guys are awesome. Let’s get to it.

Yeardley: [00:34:46] So, you’ve got Mark, one of the two suspects, and–

Zibby: [00:34:49] Well, what about Casey?

Yeardley: [00:34:50] Yeah.

Justin: [00:34:50] That’s half of it. Half the work’s done. So, one’s checked off the list and we know there’s still another one out there.

Zibby: [00:34:56] Was Mark talking or was he throwing attitude?

Justin: [00:35:00] He’s overly compliant at this point. I have no doubt that he saw and heard what was coming his way and didn’t want any piece of it. The dog, multiple officers. I know at least Detective Dan had a rifle with him, and so he stands up, hands up, “I don’t want to get bit,” follows all the directions to a tee and then gets detain, patted down. And I think he gets handed off to detectives relatively soon. They’re more equipped for it, and honestly, I’m going to go find the other guy.

Yeardley: [00:35:26] You found Mark by going left. Do you just turn back around and head right this time?

Justin: [00:35:31] Yep. We go the other way and we have left to go on, he went that way. One went that way and I saw him at the alley, this guy went that way. And so, we start going that way. We try to track, Fido puts his nose down, hit and miss, it’s hard being in a city, urban environment, the ground covered primarily concrete, asphalt, and that makes it harder for the dogs. It’s a hot day, and that affects the way scent lingers. Humans skin cells, skin rafts, they’re called that fall off somebody as they’re moving across the surface. The dogs can actually smell that. Where if they’re on grass or vegetation, they can smell the disturbance to the vegetation.

Yeardley: [00:36:06] Interesting.

Justin: [00:36:07] You can track hours, even days after someone goes across grass.

Yeardley: [00:36:10] Really?

Justin: [00:36:11] It’s amazing.

Zibby: [00:36:12] That’s amazing.

Justin: [00:36:13] You have minutes, hours on hard surface.

Yeardley: [00:36:15] And if it’s hot, I assume even less time.

Justin: [00:36:18] Yep. Wind, heat, rain all that affects how that scent stays, traffic, cross contamination. It’s not an easy task. Fido was really good at it, that was one of his things. We try it and get a little bit here and there but he’s not the first guy, not like Mark. We’re struggling. We have this airtight perimeter that’s even more reinforced now. There’s still more cops showing up this whole time, guys from other agencies are still coming in, local sheriff’s office. We have probably every cop in our county that can be there. We go from trying to track this guy with Fido to checking yards. And this is a serious enough case that we’re checking every yard, every house, we’ll go back and check them again because we have to find this guy.

Yeardley: [00:37:02] Do you know if Casey is armed also?

Justin: [00:37:04] No. As we’re continuing this search, additional canines have been called in to help because it’s a large area. The more time goes by, the farther he could get.

Zibby: [00:37:14] I was going to ask you. Is it like multiple blocks?

Justin: [00:37:16] It starts out several blocks, four or five blocks in each direction. But then as time goes on, as more resources get there, we’ve expanded that. We don’t know if he’s still moving. We don’t know if he’s hidden. We don’t know if he someone that has a house there or he got a ride, we don’t know. By the time this thing ends, we’re talking probably a square mile cordoned off and not airtight where checkpoints at each street corner.

Dave: [00:37:39] Officers parked at intersections where they can look down the street as far as they can to see if somebody bolts across the street. So, it’s not airtight as he says, it’s a loose perimeter. But we’re all focusing on this really large area after Mark got caught.

Justin: [00:37:56] We’ve expanded and the search is on, and it’s almost like Hollywood manhunt style at this point. There’s different teams and additional canines arriving.

Zibby: [00:38:05] Helicopters?

Justin: [00:38:06] Unfortunately, not.

Zibby: [00:38:07] Small town.

Justin: [00:38:07] Yeah, small town, I wish. As we’re doing this, a canine from our neighboring agency is there. When Mark was taken into custody, he was searched for weapons, we didn’t find a gun. He’s in this alleyway and there’s this law, we have to hurry, but we’re to the point now where time is on our side. We’re confident Casey’s not getting out of this perimeter, there’s so many cops there or he’s not getting out without being seen.

Yeardley: [00:38:29] How do you know that he’s still within your perimeter, though?

Justin: [00:38:33] We don’t for sure. But that’s why the initial perimeter is so important to us and making it big enough where we’ve contained him and that containment idea is huge. You’ve got to think, not necessarily in this case, but someone breaks into your house, you see them leaving, you call 911, you tell them what happens, they send it to the police. There’s several minutes that have passed just in phone calls before the cops even know about it. And people can make it several blocks and a couple minutes running. And so bigger is better, and then you can always make it smaller as you get new information.

[00:39:02] The neighboring agency canine, we’re worried about this gun, and he actually gets sent over to the alley where we found Mark. In addition to finding people, our dogs can find anything with human scent on them. Keys, flashlights, is what I found most often with Fido, is officer would lose a flashlight in the dark and, “Hey, can your dog find my flashlight?”

Yeardley: [00:39:19] Really?


Justin: [00:39:20] Yeah. Okay. I usually make him buy me a coffee or something for it.

Yeardley: [00:39:24] I hope so.

Justin: [00:39:25] And it was good training. He takes his dog over there and checks the area where we found Mark (unintelligible) , waist-high grass, kind of matted down in some places because it’s fallen over, it’s so tall, buried underneath it under a pretty good layer of grass, he finds the gun from the shooting with his dog.

Yeardley: [00:39:42] Oh, wow!

Dave: [00:39:43] I remember recovering that gun and putting it in an evidence bag. I stood over this area and he said, “It’s right there.” I said, “Where?” I couldn’t see it. He said, “Oh, it’s under the grass.” I start pawing at the grass, and sure enough, silver handgun with a holster sitting right there probably 15 feet from where this guy, Mark, came out of the bushes. As he gives himself up, he walks right past this gun, and could have easily been like, “I’m compliant, I’m compliant,” boom, down into the grass, grab the gun and do whatever you want. So, this guy had concealed the gun pretty well. I mean I’m standing right on top of it, and I couldn’t see it.

Justin: [00:40:24] There’s a great picture, I think, you took of grass. And going through this case, there’s a picture of just dead grass, and what’s telling us the next picture because it has the grass move back and you see the gun for the first time.

Yeardley and Zibby: [00:40:34] Wow!

Zibby: [00:40:35] In theory, you recovered the gun from the crime, except you still don’t know if Casey’s armed.

Justin: [00:40:42] Right. At this point, it’s a gun. We don’t know one, two, three. We don’t know if it’s the gun, but we’ve recovered a gun now from these guys. The search continues, we go into a kind of a yard to yard mode, where we’re checking every yard, every place we can get, most people come out, interact with them, see if they give us any information about seeing somebody run or hearing something in their backyard, and sometimes people want to be overly helpful and provide information that’s old, or it’s, “Well, 30 minutes ago, I heard something hit my roof.” Okay. But it’s something you have to address because you don’t want to miss something. And so, we spend hours on this.

Zibby: [00:41:19] Like five hours or–?

Justin: [00:41:20] Two or three, I think. It’s an August day, late afternoon now, and it is hot. And the heat affects the dogs significantly, much more than it does us. Especially when they’re using their noses to try to find people, they’re exerting a lot of energy and start to overheat. They don’t sweat like we do. At one point, we come back and take a break. I have water in my car for Fido that he drinks and it’s a jug that I refill and it’s relatively clean, but it’s still dog water. Dan and I are gassed. I mean, we have our gear on, black uniform, dark blue uniform, sun beating down and he’s like, “Do you have any water?” I go, “Just Fido’s.” We finish Fido’s water because that’s all we had.

Yeardley: [00:41:58] What about Fido?

Justin: [00:41:59] He had some, and actually had a couple residents in the area, like, “Hey, does your dog need water?” and they turn their hose on for me.

Yeardley: [00:42:04] Oh, that’s nice.

Zibby: [00:42:05] Okay, so it’s hot, this is hours, you’re all drinking Fido’s water, do you find Casey?

Justin: [00:42:12] We do. One of our partner units, quick-thinking, heads-up guy talks to a resident in the area. And by this point, people were talking to Mark and our detectives are doing their detective thing, and we start to develop this identity for this other guy that stopped there, this Casey. And this resident who had seen somebody in the area was shown a picture of Casey, “Hey, this the guy.” Okay. “Yeah, it looks like him. It was not what he’s wearing today. But yeah, I think that’s him.” And it narrowed our search on to a specific address in the area. We converge on there. Fido and I, and my team happened to be closest to that address, and it’s funny, and that that address is three or four houses from the intersection where this car chase ended.

Yeardley: [00:42:54] Oh, really?

Dave: [00:42:55] We’ve been walking by this yard for hours. My patrol car was actually parked right next to the fence.

Zibby: [00:43:02] Oh, wow!

Yeardley: [00:43:03] What?

Zibby: [00:43:05] Where was he?

Justin: [00:43:06] Well, we contact one individual in the backyard who’s clearly not our guy, doesn’t match the description at all, and this is a problem house in the area that we’re familiar with. No surprise, he’s here, but he’s a different age demographic and stuff than the people that associate with this house. He’s a younger guy and these are older clientele. They’ve been around the block a while. So, there’s no obvious connection. And so, we get him out of the way and we make our way into this backyard. And with the info we had, we’re coming pretty hot and heavy. We start working our way through the yard and Fido on out front and everyone’s behind us protecting us. And this backyard, it had to be at least a half-acre lot.

Yeardley: [00:43:45] And my picture of the backyard is that it’s just grass. It’s empty, but does it have buildings on it or–?

Justin: [00:43:51] Yeah, and house, it’s close to the street, kind of a shanty style house. There’s some homemade, carport-type covers we make our way through and the backyard is grass. There’s a couple trees, but then there’s several outbuildings. And it’s like, “Oh great, more places to hide, more places to search.” We make our way towards one that’s kind of right in the middle of this backyard, and it’s probably 50, maybe 100 yards from the gate where we make entry into this backyard. So, it’s a ways in there and there’s still another 50-ish yards to the back fence. So, we’re making our way to it and I’m looking around, and in my mind, I’m thinking, “Oh, he’s going to be in the shed. That’s where I’d be.” We get there and Fido, he smells and he pulls me around and starts air spinning and he takes us around and pass the front doors to the shed. I’m thinking, “Let’s go to the doors, he’s going to use the door to get in.”

[00:44:40] Around the backside of this shed had a pickup canopy laid up against the back of it, and I still don’t see anything, and Fido’s excited again. Guy is close. Fido would always spin, make left hand circles when he got right on top of somebody. It was like his tell, left circles. Fast, out-of-control barking, spinning, spinning, spinning, spinning at the end of the leash and he starts doing that.

Dave: [00:45:03] Yeah. Got wrapped up a few times by Fido because he was a little quicker than my hands.


Justin: [00:45:08] Fido is spinning, and I know Dan knows what that means and trooper is still with us who started this whole pursuit doing his job of, they’re are my eyes and protection watching what’s going on around me, sees a hand under this canopy, tucked into the very corner of this truck canopy is this hand.

Zibby: [00:45:23] So creepy.

Justin: [00:45:25] The first I know of it, because I’m still trying to figure out exactly what Fido is telling me because he’s excited. I know the guy’s there, but I’m like, “Where? What’s he doing?” I hear the trooper challenged the guy. “Show me your hands.” Wait, who? And Casey who’s crawled back in the cornice canopy, sticks out another hand, and there’s two hands. He’s a little bit slower to follow commands. He’s not uncooperative, but he’s just slow. And anytime someone’s slow, you get a little bit edgier because it’s like, “Are they planning something? Are they-

Zibby: [00:45:51] Buying time.

Justin: [00:45:52] -buying their– Yeah, before they make their move. He crawls his way out, and we put handcuffs on him.

Zibby: [00:45:58] So, the slow didn’t lead it anything, as far as you could tell. He was just resisting the fact that this moment is happening.

Yeardley: [00:46:06] What happened to Tommy, the victim?

Justin: [00:46:09] Tommy’s treated at our local hospital. Basically, they had said that he had significant internal bleeding caused by this bullet. And fortunately for him, once they got in there surgically, they were able to stop the bleeding and that’s all it took.

Yeardley: [00:46:23] Oh!

Justin: [00:46:24] I would have never in a million years thought it is going to be that simple. I mean, literally, they got it, they gave him a bunch of blood, they got in there, stop the bleeding and he was fine.

Zibby: [00:46:34] Yeah, that’s a drastic shift from seeing someone who you were certain would be dead in moments. Let me ask, do Tommy and Jeff face any consequences for trying to orchestrate a drug deal, or are they just victims at this point, and there are no repercussions legally?

Justin: [00:46:52] At this point, they’re the victims. They recognize and so do we the reasons that brought them there weren’t going to be good, but really what they did, they took money to a place and ended up going to buy some towels in a duffel bag. It’s not the ideal case you want, perfect victims that have never been in trouble, that are on the up and up, because juries are going to love to see that, not that this was an orchestrated drug deal that went bad. It doesn’t change the fact that there was still robbery, someone’s still got shot. These guys are still victims.

Yeardley: [00:47:21] So, if they had actually bought that six pounds of weed, and let’s say Mark had pulled a gun on them anyway and shot Tommy, would Tommy and his friend Jeff still be charged with something because now it actually is a drug deal?

Dave: [00:47:37] Yeah. It’s a prosecutor’s discretion type thing. So, it might be a situation where, “Hey, if we recover that money that was stolen from you, the eight grand, you just donated that because it’s involved in a criminal transaction. We’re still going to represent you as a victim if you are a victim of this robbery, but the penalty you pay is that your illicit funds are seized by the police department.”

Yeardley: [00:48:04] Where do those confiscated funds go?

Dan: [00:48:06] Those funds that we confiscate from illicit illegal activity, sometimes includes guns, cash, cars, all of those things go through a civil forfeiture process. There’s a ton of paperwork that we have to do. Once it gets approved, all that money goes into a fund for us. And we buy desks, chairs for the detectives. We buy training equipment, part of that pays for our training, other tactical equipment that our SWAT team can use. All of those things that we get out of that forfeiture.

Dave: [00:48:42] When we’ve got people that are victims of a crime, and there’s an obvious greater good out there, what we’re trying to do, is go after the really bad guys who are pulling guns on people. That’s the focus is, has this person learned a lesson the victim, and that Tommy learned a really valuable lesson. So do Jeff. And we got two really bad guys off the street that were out there doing street robberies.

Zibby: [00:49:06] Did this go to any kind of trial?

Dave: [00:49:10] Casey took a deal, and then Mark, the shooter, he took it to trial. I think he got convicted of assault in the first degree, robbery in the first degree, unlawful use of a weapon, those types of things. I don’t think there was an attempted murder based on his description of the event.

Zibby: [00:49:29] What was his description of the shooting?

Dave: [00:49:31] Mark says that, “My finger was on the trigger,” there’s a scuffle and he shoots this guy on accident and it just happens to center punch him right in the chest.

Zibby: [00:49:41] That’s his defense?

Dave: [00:49:42] Yeah, that’s disputed by Tommy.

Yeardley: [00:49:44] Huh, you don’t say.

Dave: [00:49:45] Center punching somebody in the chest, you’ve got your finger on the trigger, you’re prepared to use that. People that know anything about gun safety know not to put your finger on the trigger.

Zibby: [00:49:56] Maybe he didn’t know about gun safety.

Dave: [00:49:58] Probably not.

Zibby: [00:50:00] He probably just took what they show us in the television.

Dave: [00:50:03] Right, that we see these Hollywood stars going to clear houses with the guns up like Charlie’s Angels and their finger on the trigger.

Zibby: [00:50:09] Yeah. Guys, we’ve learned that that’s not how you do it.

Dave: [00:50:12] That is not how you do it.

Zibby: [00:50:13] So, what was the sentencing?

Dave: [00:50:16] For those types of charges, our state has prescribed mandatory sentences for each of those charges, and I think this amounted to about 12 to 15 years for this guy.

Yeardley: [00:50:27] Wow!

Zibby: [00:50:27] Just for Mark. When you say Casey took a deal, does that mean he didn’t have to go to jail?

Dave: [00:50:31] Well, he did go to prison. He’s part of this robbery scheme, but he’s not part of the actual assault, the use of the weapon. So, he gets caught up in it a little bit and he has to testify against his friend. So, he pays a price with freedom, and snitches get stitches, right?

Yeardley: [00:50:50] Yeah. Is that going to be bad for him in prison?

Dave: [00:50:52] It could be, and I don’t know the backstory on how life is for these two guys in prison.

Zibby: [00:50:57] Are they still there today?

Dave: [00:50:58] They are.

Yeardley: [00:51:00] Wow!

Zibby: [00:51:01] That’s a good story, the Fido of it all.

Yeardley: [00:51:04] The Fido of it all. We love Fido.

Zibby: [00:51:06] He had a good day.

Dan: [00:51:10] Again, I think you can see how so many different personalities and agencies came together. Again, we have a common goal, let’s find the bad guy and let’s represent our victim in this case, and largely the rest of our city because this happened in broad daylight in a major department store’s parking lot on a Sunday afternoon where there were people everywhere. So, to get these two guys off the street was very rewarding. So, thanks for listening.

Yeardley: [00:51:51] Small Town Dicks is produced by Zibby Allen and Yeardley Smith and coproduced by Detectives Dan and Dave.

Zibby: [00:51:58] This episode was edited by Logan Heftel, Stuart Brawley, Yeardley Smith and Zibby Allen.

Yeardley: [00:52:04] Music for the show was composed by John Forest. Our associate producer is Erin Gaynor, and our books are cooked and cats wrangled by Ben Cornwell.

Zibby: [00:52:14] If you like what you hear and want to stay up to date with the show, head on over to and become our pal on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @smalltowndicks. We love hearing from our Small Town Fam, so hit us up.

Yeardley: [00:52:27] Yeah. Also, we have a YouTube channel where you can see trailers for past and forthcoming episodes, and we’re part of Stitcher Premium now.

Zibby: [00:52:36] That’s right. If you choose to subscribe, you’ll be supporting our podcast. That way, we can keep going to small towns across the country and bringing you the finest in rare true crime cases, told as always by the detectives who investigated them. Thanks for listening, Small Town Fam.

Yeardley: [00:52:52] Nobody’s better than you.