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After being set up by her cohorts and arrested, a drug smuggling mechanic decides to help a local police detective put them behind bars, if she can avoid retaliation in her criminal underworld.
Season 1 introduces us to Frankie, the mechanic/paid informant who, in the course of her mobile work fixing cars, meets all kinds of people, including criminals. Most are drug dealers, but she occasionally comes across other criminal types who just have to brag about their exploits. We also meet Brett, the detective who works with Frankie to clean up the streets in their corner of the world.
Episode One: 211 in Progress, first of two parts:
An experienced mechanic, Frankie fixes many people’s cars, but the girls living a few streets away from her family pull her in a new direction when she begins working on their cars and ultimately repairs the leaders’ cars. At the request of Troya and Marciana, the girl gang leaders, and armed with her own expertise, Frankie steals the vehicles they want from various parking lots around the county. They pay her 500.00 for each car. With one seemingly careless question, Frankie finds out the gang uses the stolen cars to rob banks. She then goes to the police and informs them that the next robbery will take place the following day, Saturday morning.
Aware of the violent nature of past robberies, the police set up an operation to catch the gang in the act. At the direction of the police, Frankie steals another car and participates in the robbery as the getaway driver. It should have been simple: catch and arrest the gang in the middle of a 211 in progress. This first episode ends as the bank robbers evade capture. (The second half, when the gang is captured and put on trial, with Frankie testifying, will air at the end of the season, as another case is begun).
The second episode flashes the audience back to Frankie and Brett’s first meeting. Frankie is pulled over by a motorcycle cop for speeding. When the officer finds illegal drugs, Frankie is arrested and taken to the police station. There, she answers questions, but tells the arresting officer she wants to speak to someone in the narcotics division. A short time later, two officers, faces hidden, enter the room. At that time, Frankie tells the officer he can help them catch some major drug kingpins and mentions several names. The two officers leave, and one comes back, face no longer hidden. Brett agrees to a partnership. Frankie is free to go, but she must work off this case as an informant to Brett. Frankie offers to bring him as many criminals as he wants, especially the ones who had set her up to get caught. Targeting three known higher level drug dealers, Frankie fed Brett the intel, easily gathering information from people she had known for several years.
Each episode will feature a case Frankie helps Brett crack, mostly higher-level drug dealers and smugglers, many connected to Mexican drug cartels. In 1991, Frankie was smuggling marijuana to Boston. Among these cases was a Hispanic family whose sons were all involved in trafficking illegal drugs. Frankie works on their cars, is welcomed as part of the family, even as she and Brett sought the arrest of the sons. This case goes on for years as the two solve many other cases. Eventually the two younger men are caught, one at a time, but the older eludes capture for years.
Another case involved an auto repair/machine engine rebuild shop owner who allowed drugs to be dumped along with landscaping materials in the back of the shop in exchange for substantial amounts of money.
A third case did not involve drugs, but fraud. Howard B bragged to Frankie about what he did and how, saying Frankie wasn’t smart enough to do it. Bragging and insulting. However, Frankie became the reason he went back to prison at 70 plus years of age. He was going under the name Steve; the reason law enforcement had not caught up with him in Tucson. Frankie didn’t have his real name until he drove with him to California to get something important and fraud related from a PO box. Frankie got the real name and promptly informed Brett, who relayed the information to the secret service and Post office, both agencies on the new task force.
On these earlier cases, Frankie built a solid reputation as a reliable, knowledgeable informant. Over the years she and Brett became good friends despite the policy forbidding them to socialize outside of work. They didn’t socialize, but they did meet and talk frequently. The season ends with the bank robbers being arrested in their various homes and standing trial for their crimes. Without Frankie’s testimony, there
would not have been a case since the cash evidence had been mishandled. As a result, and for her own protection, Frankie ended up in prison, where she continued to ensure criminals got caught. Shortly after she is in her cell, she solves adecades old murder of a child.