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Is their reasons why an undercover cop would work alone in this case?

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Old 01-25-2016, 10:31 AM
ironpony (Offline)
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Default Is their reasons why an undercover cop would work alone in this case?


So I finished writing out my story, at least in another draft, and read it through. I think I might have discovered a plot hole, and was wonderng if it was fixable.

For my story, I want an undercover cop to work alone. But I am finding the premise difficult to make it work, cause I cannot think of why an undercover cop would. I mean you don't want to send a cop to infiltrate a dangerous criminal organization, without monitoring him, and wanting to keep him safe.

But I would like the cop to witness things, that no other cop does. Therefore later on, he has trouble getting his superiors to believe certain things about the case. It becomes the crooks word against his. But if he has back up, the other officers will support what he says, and it's easier for superiors to believe more than one cop, telling the same thing, compared to one only, against everyone else.

Plus since it's a very low budget screenplay, I would like him to work alone, so less actors would needed, if possible.

Is the concept feasible, or is it just not logical enough, and the police would just want to give the cop back up, that is surveying him, ready to go, in case his cover is blown?

I know that they do not have back up, that is waiting for him, and watching from far away, all the time, but is there a way to write it so that the cop has to go to a suspicious meeting with the big honchos, and still be doing it alone, without any back up waiting in cars or vans, down the block, just in case it's an ambush on the undercover cop, which it is?

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Old 01-25-2016, 01:49 PM
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I thought deep cover operatives worked alone all the time, they are just suppose to check in with a handler on a given schedule.


just my thoughts.


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Old 01-26-2016, 12:54 AM
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This is what I found out in my research, but that doesn't seem real to me at all.

I mean wouldn't the cops still want to monitor the undercover officer, for the first meeting with a gang he has never met before, just in case anything were to happen?
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Old 01-26-2016, 07:17 AM
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and blow his cover?
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Old 01-26-2016, 12:40 PM
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But when I watch documentaries on the subject, there is always other cops monitoring in a van, or in other cars nearby, to make sure everything is okay. There are several episodes of FBI Files, based on real cases where this happens.

So if this happens a lot in real life, then how would it blow his cover, when they are experts at staying hidden?
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Old 01-26-2016, 01:06 PM
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it seems to me that you want this story to go a certain way...

if I were you I'd just write it that way.

after all, it's just fiction.

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Old 01-27-2016, 02:19 AM
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Okay thanks. I want to write it so that he works alone, it's just that I have a lot of trouble believing it, so I am having a hard time writing it as a result.
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Old 02-05-2016, 01:55 AM
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In all the movies I've seen where cops are deep undercover (like Donny Brasco) the cop is deep in, often unreachable, or not wanting to be reached, to the chagrin of his superiors. The undercover cop working alone is so common in the genre I'm surprised you have an issue believing it.
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Old 02-05-2016, 05:27 AM
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Default Is their reasons why an undercover cop would work alone in this case?

Years of cop shows and police procedurals have taught me the difference in a sting operation and going undercover. In a sting operation the sting is relatively short and cop is generally wired and supervised. An undercover cop's job is to infiltrate deep into a criminal community by earning trust and becoming one of them sometimes even participating in criminal activity to sell himself as a criminal and be promoted within the ranks. He's on his own, sometimes going months or even years without talking to his handler or seeing his family. Most of the time only a few people even know he's a cop so he wouldn't have friendships on the police force. It's dangerous, but one of the primary dangers is that he'd get in too deep and forget who he really is.
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Old 02-05-2016, 06:15 AM
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Tana French wrote a pretty cool novel about an undercover assignment called The Likeness. It's been years since I've read it but it stands out in my mind as being quite a different take on the subject.
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Old 02-05-2016, 01:23 PM
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Okay thanks. Well in my story, an undercover cop infiltrates a gang and has to kill another person to be accepted by the gang. Or at least harm another person brutally, as part of his test for getting in with them. But he does not want to do this and breaks cover to save the person from being killed by the gang, since he couldn't do it.

So when a cop infiltrates a gang, how long before they give him that test? Would they do it on the first day, like in the movie Training Day, when the corrupt cops wanted to get a cop to kill someone as part of the recruitment? Or would they want till a further meeting?
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Old 02-05-2016, 02:29 PM
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Just shooting from the hip here as I've never actually been in a gang, but ordering someone to kill someone is conspiracy to commit murder. If I was running a gang I think I'd start smaller until I got to know the person better. Maybe ask them to deliver a package or polish my gold chains.
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Old 02-06-2016, 11:06 AM
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Well they wouldn't actually have the person go through with it. They would make them believe they would such as giving him a gun that is made to look real but fake and have him pull the trigger against a fake hostage, who is one of the gang, but just posing as one, or something.

It would be a test, but it would also be a ruse, so the conspiracy to commit murder could be not provable to in court. But I can still write so that get him to do something else and get to know him better. However, the gang does not want the police tracing their calls. They communicate to him by phone cause they don't want him to know who the members are, on the other line, until he does the big test. So the longer they take to give him the test, the more lengths they have to go to keep their phones from being traced, since they do not want him to know who they are, until he has proven his way in.

Last edited by ironpony; 02-06-2016 at 11:09 AM..
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Old 06-12-2017, 01:13 AM
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good idea
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