Wolverine (2nd series) #188

Issue Date: 
June 2003
Story Title: 
Good Cop / Bad Cop Part: One

Daniel Way (writer), Staz Johnson (pencils), Danny Miki (inks), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letterers), Avalon Studios (colorist), Warren Simons & John Miesagaes (assistant editors), Axel Alonso (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Bill Jemas (president)

Brief Description: 

A detective by the name of Lester Brown is investigating the tragic death of a drug dealer named Elijah Snow, or as some call him, “No-Show.” Lester finishes a bottle of alcohol, as he nears the apartment of Juwan and Tawanda Barnes. Lester meets Juwan and, after an accident on one of the steps of the building, he meets Tawanda too. Tawanda defends her child and she denies Lester any hints about why Detective McLawry shot and killed Snow. Lester gets frustrated and leaves. In his car, he finds that his case against McLawry is going to be closed, which drives Lester to a nearby liquor store, where he purchases more alcohol. Waking up in front of his headquarters, Lester stumbles in to find that Tawanda is there, filing a report against him for police brutality. Before her report can be finished, she gets disgusted with Lester and leaves. Lester is called into his chief’s office and told that he is no longer on the McLawry case, he is also told to stay away from Tawanda and her kid. McLawry overheard the conversation between Tawanda and Lester. He tells his partner, Murphy, that he has to pick up his dry cleaning so he will see him later. Murphy, confused, tells Lester about McLawry’s laundry pick-up, leaving Lester to worry about Juwan’s safety. His worries are confirmed, as he shows up at the apartments to find Juwan murdered and that room in shambles. Later that night, Lester and McLawry meet at a local bar. Lester accuses McLawry of killing Juwan but finally leaves after causing a scene. Logan, mysteriously walks in after Lester leaves and asks if a drink that McLawry offered Lester was still up for having.

Full Summary: 

A detective by the name of Lester Brown stands inside an apartment room. Brown is drinking from a flask of alcohol, as he surveys the destruction around him and the blood-soaked floor. Walking out of the room, he stumbles over to a nearby door and knocks. A man opens the door, as Lester calls out that he is NYPD and that the occupants should open up.

The man inside the room tells Lester that he didn’t see nothing then slams the door shut. Lester curses and walks down the hall, commenting in a loud voice that everyone there is either too stupid or too scared to talk to him. Just then, Lester sees a young boy named Juwan and he proceeds to question him. Before Lester can make it to the boy, the child races down some nearby steps, dropping his groceries as he runs. Lester calls out that he is NYPD and the boy should stop. Pursuing the child down the steps, Lester accidentally trips over his own feet and collides with the child. Juwan cries out that Lester hurt his leg, as the two of them lay sprawled out at the bottom of the stairs.

Suddenly a feminine voice his heard up the stairs, commenting on how Lester did not just do what he did! Lester pulls out his badge and tells her that he is with the NYPD. The woman named Tawanda tells Lester to shut up and asks Juwan if he is okay. He tells her that he is okay and Lester interrupts, saying that he would like to speak to her son. Tawanda reels back towards Lester and tells him that he is fourteen and he does not need to talk to him about anything. Lester tells Tawanda that he needs to speak to her son about the shooting that occurred here. Pointing a finger towards his face, she tells him that there are a number of shootings in this area, but her son has nothing to do with any of them. Lester asks Tawanda why her son ran, then? Screaming at Lester, she tells him that he is the “po-leece” and that is why he was scared.

Lester points to his badge and tells her that he is an Internal Affairs detective and he is investigating the shooting of a man named Elijah Snow by a narcotics officer. Tawanda asks if he is talking about “No-Show” and Lester confirms her question. She asks him why he wants to know, so he can screw over his friends or his people? Lester tells her that he is trying to do his job. Tawanda tells her son to come with him and the two of them head up the stairs. Lester hands her his card and she asks if it has his badge number on it. He tells her that it is on there. She tells him that No-Show got what he deserved. Lester tells her that her idea is not the way the system should work. Tawanda finishes their conversation by telling asking him where is the system doesn’t work that way?

Lester gets into his car, just as his cell phone begins to go off. He answers that call and it is his chief, calling to try and figure out where Lester is. He tells him that he is canvassing the scene of the Snow case a second time and found some interesting leads. Continuing on after he hears his chief’s reply, Lester asks why they have closed the Snow case, even though he didn’t finish his inestigatio…He’s not able to finish as his chief apparently interrupts. Straightening his rear view mirror, Lester tells his chief that he understands and then hangs up the phone. Getting out of the car, Lester states that a man named Mclawry will not get away with his actions this time. Lester walks into a store named Bernie’s Liquor and comes out with a brown bag, containing a container of alcohol.

Later the next day, a police officer taps on the window of Lester’s car and tells him to get up and move, because he is parked in a space that has been sectioned off just for police vehicles. Lester flashes his badge and tells the officer that he is a police officer too. The police officer walks off, complaining that he is really just a friggin’ drunk. On the steps of the police station, Tawanda is seen walking into the base, unnoticed by Lester.

Inside the police station, Tawanda hassles the desk clerk about yesterday’s police brutality of her son at the hands of Detective Lester Brown. She tells him that he brutalized her son and she demands to talk to someone. Just then, Lester walks in and she focuses her rage on him. She tells him that her son’s knee is swollen up and she has no time to take her kid to the hospital. Lester begs her to lower her voice and let the two of them discuss her complaints somewhere else. The detectives nearby watch, as Lester is blasted by Tawanda, but one lone officer with red hair grins at the event, as he puts on his jacket.

Tawanda tells Lester that he wants to get her alone so he can intimidate her with his badge and gun, just like he tried to with her son. He tells her that she is wrong and begs her to listen as she storms out of the precinct, complaining that he is as crooked as the officer he is after. Lester places his fingers to his forehead, as if he has a headache. Just then, a male gentleman calls out his name and demands that Lester go to the office, now! Two officers by the name of Murphy and McLawry talk about how Mclawry’s shadow may have finally gone over the deep end. McLawry tells Murphy that he is not worried, because he knows he has done nothing wrong. He tells Murphy that he is headed out to eat something and pick up his dry cleaning so he might be awhile. Picking up a file, Murphy looks towards the departing McLawry and questions, “Dry Cleaning?”

Inside his office, the chief berates Lester for causing such a scene to happen in his station. He tells Lester that he knows he was probably drinking when the accident occurred in Snow’s complex, so he cannot say the woman was not lying. He tells Lester that Scott McLawry’s case is over and he will be found innocent. He tells Lester not to go near Tawanda or her son ever again or he is through working with the NYPD I.A. Division. Lester gets up to leave the room and his chief asks him if he hates all police officers like he hates himself.

Walking by the desks crowded with Detectives, Lester tells Murphy to tell his partner, McLawry, that he wants to talk to him. Murphy tells Lester that he can ask him himself, when he gets back from getting his dry cleaning. Murphy finishes by saying how odd it is to find a dry cleaner open on a Sunday. Lester’s eyes widen, in hatred, as he realizes what Murphy is hinting at.

Rushing to Tawanda’s apartment room, he finds it in shambles. Sinking to the ground, he says that he is too late. Racing outside, he questions the friends that are hanging out together. Placing his hands on one of the members, he asks if there was a big cop with red hair leaving here moments earlier. The punk tells Lester to let him go and a big, black kid punches Lester in the side, while another punk tells the big kid named Lo-lo to get him. From behind the kids, a shadowy figure asks the kids if that is all they have. Another punk pulls a pistol from his holster and asks if the stranger wants some of that too? Smiling, Logan tells them that it is exactly what he wants.

Lester wakes up in his car, blood soaked, as he drives away from the shadowy figure of Logan, with Lester commenting that he blew it.

Later that night, Lester sits in a bar, drinking, as a server brings him another glass. She tells him that it is from the gentleman at the bar, because he said it looked like he could use another. Looking towards the bar, Lester sees McLawry sitting and smiling back at him. Lester walks up to the bar and tells McLawry that he is not through with him yet. McLawry tells Lester that everyone knows he shot Snow in the back out of self-defense. Lester tells him that he is not talking about Snow; he is talking about the boy he had killed earlier named Juwan Barnes. McLawry stands to his feet, towering above Lester. He tells begins to comment back, but Lester does not let him. Lester asks him if he killed Tawanda too? Lester tells McLawry that he is going to stop him one day and he will prove that he cannot hide being a murderer by his badge.

McLawry grabs Lester by the collar and whispers to him that he will need luck in trying. He releases Lester and screams at him to leave him alone, because Lester seems inebriated. Lester leaves and McLawry takes his seat once more. A voice is heard from behind McLawry that asks him if he is going to drink Lester’s unfinished drink? McLawry tells Logan that he does not drink bourbon. Logan picks the cup up and tells McLawry that it is good, because it leaves more for him.

Characters Involved: 


Detective Lester Brown

Detective Scott McLawry

Detective Murphy

Juwan Barnes


NYPD Police Officers

Street-teens in New York

Tawanda Barnes

Waitress at the bar and other patrons

Story Notes: 
Issue Information: 
Written By: