Shane Scully and his partner are assigned to the case of "the Fingertip Killer", a serial murderer preying on homeless veterans in Los Angeles. Every two weeks he strikes: he beats his victims, then shoots them in the back of the head. Once they're dead, he cuts off their fingertips, closes their eyes, and tosses them in the river.
The latest killing, however, does not quite fit the pattern. It appears to be the work of the Fingertip Killer, but Scully suspects an elaborate copycat murder meant to hide a criminal conspiracy. A bullet pulled from the victim's skull produces what police call a "cold hit", an unexpected ballistics match linking one unsolved case to another, and the previous victim was an LA Police officer, killed 10 years earlier.
After heavy-handed FBI agents throw him off the Fingertip Killer case, Scully teams up with his wife and boss, Alexa, and a pair of tough cops from the LAPD's anti-terrorism squad. Outside the law and deep undercover, they fight to see justice done for the slain officer, and, possibly, to unravel a murderous plot with connections high up in the Homeland Security office.
©2005 Stephen J. Cannell; (P)2005 Audio Renaissance, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers, LLC