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The Big Fear

by Andrew Case

It’s August in New York, and the steaming garbage littering the streets isn’t the only thing that stinks.

Civilian investigator Leonard Mitchell can keep his job as the new head of the Department to Investigate Misconduct and Corruption only by successfully prosecuting veteran cop Ralph Mulino.

Mulino shot an armed man on a dark night; he didn’t know the man was a fellow cop. Now, to keep his badge and his freedom, he has to make his case to the investigator. But the gun Mulino saw in his victim’s hand has disappeared.

As Mitchell digs deeper into Mulino’s claim, it becomes clear that the “misconduct and corruption” infecting New York City go far beyond the actions of one allegedly dirty cop. Murder and sabotage force Mulino and Mitchell into an uneasy partnership to uncover the truth and protect the city they are both sworn to serve.

Assuming, of course, they can stay alive…

The Big Fear is a debut novel from a seasoned playwright, who, for nearly ten years, aided investigations into allegations of misconduct against NYPD officers. The result is an authentic piece of storytelling with the workings of modern New York on every page. The city’s changes, its politics, hierarchy, media and law enforcement are portrayed with an insight that compels, woven into a cat and mouse plot. Well defined characters are tested to their limits in this top draw mystery of procedure and self-protection.  If, like me, you enjoyed Richard Price’s  The Whites you’ll love The Big Fear. 


Ralph Mulino is a 53-year-old cop doing legwork with bad legs whilst juggling a fractured relationship with his colleagues. Now part of the Organised Crime Control Bureau, one night he’s ordered to join Harbour Patrol’s midnight tour, with deadly consequences.


Leonard Mitchell, who works at the Department to Investigate Misconduct and Corruption, is trying to find out what happened that night on the boat - a night that saw a young Detective shot. Why was Mulino assigned the tour? Is he lying, or, as a white, middle-aged cop with an old-school revolver, some kind of a trophy?


It’s not long before Mitchell has his own problems after his superior, the city’s commissioner, disappears. Soon it’s not just Mulino and Mitchell’s careers that are in danger, it’s their lives too. And just what is happening to New York City, it’s like the ‘70s are back from vacation. Are all the recent incidents and strikes coincidence or are some big strings being pulled?  


Gripping, authentic, read it!



About Andrew Case:

Andrew Case is a seasoned playwright and author of the stage plays The Electric Century, Pacific, The Rant, and many others. He has been a member of the New American Writers Group at Primary Stages, a participating playwright at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, and a member of the PEN America Center.


For nearly a decade, he served as an investigator, spokesman, and policy director at the Civilian Complaint Review Board, which investigates allegations of misconduct against New York City Police Department officers. His scholarship on police oversight has appeared in the Columbia Human Rights Law Review.


Andrew lives in Flatbush, Brooklyn, with his wife, Claudia, and their two children. The Big Fear is his first novel.


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