L. A.'s Last Street Cop

Al Moreno

Book Cover

GENRE

MEMOIR ACTION ADVENTURE APOCALYPTIC BIOGRAPHICAL CRIME DETECTIVE DRAMA EPIC EROTICA FAMILY POLITICAL WAR SUSPENSE/THRILLER RELIGIOUS

    Core Theme

    CONVICTION

    TIME PERIOD

    1960s & '70s,1980s & '90s,20th Century (multiple decades),2000s,Contemporary

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    SERPICO, TRAINING DAY, END OF WATCH

    CHARACTER LIST

    AL MORENO: 30S. LEAD. DETERMINED, COURAGEOUS, INSTINCTIVE, SHARP, WITTY.

    SUSAN: FEMALE. MID-20S. LOVER.

    BILL WONG: MALE. MID-30S. PARTNER.

    FRANK WINDSOR: MALE. LATE-50S. SUPERIOR.

    JACK WILDER: MALE. MID-20S. MORE EXPERIENCED COLLEAGUE.

    BRENDAN BROPHY. MALE. MID-20S. MORE EXPERIENCED COLLEAGUE.

    Logline

    A Hispanic American boy raised in a gang infested section of watts with an impossible dream of becoming a Los Angeles Police Officer. After overcoming a plethora of crucibles, including Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, a four-year bout with crutches and a metal brace, an ex-con father that never showed his f

    Target Audiences

    Age: 13-17,18-34,35-54,55+

    Target Gender: Universal

    Setting

    Los Angeles, CA

    Based on a True Story

    Yes

    Publishing Details

    Status: Yes: with a Publisher

    Publisher: Highpoint Executive Publishing

    Year Published: 2020

    Starting Description

    Then came the horrid screams and cries for mercy as the Aryan Brotherhood gang members systematically slaughtered my little brothers, my sisters, and my mom. It was the most vivid and horrifying dream I ever had. For years, I had this recurring nightmare and similar ones as well. I went into a paran

    Ending Description

    After being falsely terminated by the LAPD, a job I loved more than life. I have fought to clear my name unsuccessfully for the last four decades. But continue to work in clearing my name and have my honor restored.

    Group Specific

    City of Los Angeles

    Hard Copy Available

    Yes

    ISBN

    978-1-7344497-0-9

    Mature Audience Themes

    Extreme Violence,Nudity, Language/Profanity

    Plot - Other Elements

    Meaningful Message

    Plot - Premise

    Overcoming Monster/Villain,Quest,Tragedy

    Main Character Details

    Name: Al Moreno

    Age: 20/30's

    Gender: Male

    Role: Emotional

    Key Traits: Adventurous,Masculine,Aspiring,Badass,Aggressive,Charming,Complex,Sexy,Confident,Patriotic,Religious,Crazy,Decisive,Engaging,Outspoken,Skillful,Faithful,Funny,Gracious,Romantic,Heartthrob,Heroic,Educated,Seductive,Honorable,Strong Moral Code,Leader,Unapologetic

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Development Pitch

    How could one of the largest police departments in the United States step back and do nothing as an ex-con from the Aryan Brotherhood came after one of its own officers? In L.A.’s Last Street Cop: Surviving Hollywood’s Freaks, The Aryan Brotherhood, and the L.A.P.D.’s Homicidal Vendetta Against Me. Author Al Moreno paints a chilling picture of official retribution for his whistleblowing on Los Angeles Police Department corruption. He lived to tell this tale but learned that not even the best street cop has a shield big enough to protect him and his family from a few bad guys in the Department wearing the same uniform.

    Genre

    THRILLER, ROMANCE, MATURE AUDIENCE, DRAMA, POLITICS

    Brief

    In 1975 Al Moreno graduates Los Angeles Police Academy and goes on to have an impressive career as one of LAPD's best officers until, five years later, Al is fired and loses everything after he speaks out about corruption in the department.

    Overall Rating

    GOOD

    Point of View

    FIRST PERSON

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: GOOD

    Characterization: GOOD

    Commerciality: GOOD

    Franchise Potential: FAIR

    Pace: GOOD

    Premise: GOOD

    Structure: GOOD

    Theme: GOOD

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    Too many genres identified. Too many eras identified. The logline is unfinished and could be more appropriate.

    Draw of Story

    As one of LAPD's top cops, the author's detailed, authentic knowledge of life as a police officer on LA's tough streets in the '70s is fascinating and offers a different perspective than the "Hollywood" version we see almost exclusively in film and TV. This SERPICO-like memoir documenting Al Moreno's quick rise following graduation at the police academy to his being fired following speaking out about department corruption is infused with wit, sharp observations on life and society, and many thrilling scenes in which lives--Moreno's included--hang in the balance.

    Possible Drawbacks

    The focus of the memoir on Moreno's firing from LAPD for speaking out about corruption is lost at times as the narrative drifts toward the many scenes showcasing the dangers of life as an LAPD officer as well as Moreno's achievements and quick thinking. These scenes are too many and too frequent and pull the reader's mind too far away from the ultimate focus of the memoir. There is a tendency to over-glorify police while criticizing the public for their naivety and ignorance which becomes old quickly. More scenes showing Al's home and romantic life away from the policing aspect to his life would be welcome to better build a portrait of the man who will be betrayed by the institution he so loves.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY DOES NOT RELY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    Like the protagonist in SERPICO, Al Moreno was a great cop who loved the job and lost it all because he chose to speak out about corruption inside the very organization he so loved. Moreno's is a story about staying true to one's principles in the face of great adversity--David vs. Goliath--and the corruption of LAPD during this era mirrors the same corruption we see today not only in LAPD but across the board in our society including most of our institutions. In this way, L.A.'S LAST STREET COP is a morality tale for our time.

    Fanbase Potential

    It could have a moderately sized but passionate fanbase as a hard-edged crime film about police corruption and one man's battle against a mighty opponent.

    Awards Potential

    This is certainly the kind of film that, if done well with a great script, could lead to great interest from the awards community. SERPICO, the film this is most like, was nominated for two Oscars (best leading actor and best adapted screenplay) and won a Golden Globe (best leading actor).

    Envisioned Budget

    MEDIUM BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    SERPICO, TRAINING DAY, END OF WATCH

    What’s New About the Story

    Unique are the authentic details about life as a police officer on LA's tough streets in the '70s as provided by the author who was exactly that. It could be made more unique by differentiating it from SERPICO as much as possible which could be done by mixing into the police story dramatic subplots showing Al Moreno's home and romantic life, building a deeper portrait of the man beyond the police officer.

    Lead Characters

    Al Moreno and many of his colleagues are witty, determined, fearless, passionate, ideological. Some of Al's colleagues are aggressive and hostile. Some are malevolent and dominating. All are interesting.

    Uniqueness of Story

    It's almost a rare gem. If more contrast could be drawn between this story and SERPICO it would greater allow L.A.'S LAST STREET COP to find its own voice and space in the marketplace, which could be done by building a portrait of Moreno which is different than that of SERPICO's portrayal of Frank Serpico. As well as this, the focus of the story should keep more closely on the corruption in the department rather than sidetrack into so many unrelated scenes which (though thrilling and enjoyable) begin to feel distracting after a while.

    Possible Formats

    Film: Studio, Indie, Streaming

    Analyst Recommendation

    CONSIDER

    Justification

    L.A.'S LAST STREET COP is a fascinating story told from an authentic point of view which shares many similarities with SERPICO, widely regarded as one of the greatest crime films. It needs some work to feel a little more original, as well as a tighter focus on its main plot, but overall this is a story worth considering for adaptation.

    Brief

    In 1975 Al Moreno graduates Los Angeles Police Academy and goes on to have an impressive career as one of LAPD's best officers until, five years later, Al is fired and loses everything after he speaks out about corruption in the department.

    What We Liked

    As one of LAPD's top cops, the author's detailed, authentic knowledge of life as a police officer on LA's tough streets in the '70s is fascinating and offers a different perspective than the "Hollywood" version we see almost exclusively in film and TV. This SERPICO-like memoir documenting Al Moreno's quick rise following graduation at the police academy to his being fired following speaking out about department corruption is infused with wit, sharp observations on life and society, and many thrilling scenes in which lives--Moreno's included--hang in the balance.

    Film: L.A.'S LAST STREET COP is most suitable for film adaptation as the story of Al Moreno's quick rise as one of LAPD's best cops to his firing following speaking out about corruption in the department offers the perfect framework to explore over the course of a feature film. The story is similar to SERPICO in many ways and with the right cast and script, a film adaptation could interest the awards community greatly and reach a wide audience as its tale of LAPD corruption in the '70s will resonate with a contemporary public which sees corruption all around them today. Moreno's conviction to his principles in the face of great adversity is an admirable moral tale of David vs. Goliath that will appeal to a universal audience. It contains many thrilling moments of violence on the streets of Los Angeles which are enhanced by the authentic nature of the story as told by the man who was there and who was one of LAPD's best officers.

    TV: L.A.'S LAST STREET COP could make an excellent limited-series TV show as it follows rookie cop Al Moreno after his graduation from Los Angeles Police Academy to his immersion on the violent streets of LA to his eventual firing from the job following his speaking out about corruption in the department and his ensuing battle to get his job back. Such a trajectory offers plenty of opportunities for subplots episode to episode, as well as overarching subplots involving Al's personal and romantic life, culminating in a CHINATOWN-like finish as the corruption in the department and the powerful people behind it win out in the end, mirroring the corruption we see across in our society today.

    Key points:
    1) Authentic exploration of life as an LAPD officer in the '70s
    2) A universal tale of David vs. Goliath and being true to one's principles
    3) Infused with both drama and thrills
    4) Well-structured with a clear and powerful character arc for the protagonist
    5) This tale of 1970s corruption will resonate with a contemporary audience which sees corruption everywhere in society today

    Synopsis

    Based on a true story, L.A.’s Last Street Cop combines the most powerful elements of The New Centurions, Serpico and L.A. Confidential. One of 12 children, Tijuana-born Al Moreno is raised in an 874-square foot home amidst the gang-infested streets of Florencia-13 in south/east Los Angeles. After an aimless childhood dealing with a plethora of crucibles including a crippling four-year bout with Legg Calve Perthes, dyslexia, dyscalculia and encounters with the law. He joins the Marine Corps at the height of the Vietnam war (1968/9) and serves with India Co. 3rd Bn. 7th Marines as a fire-team leader.

    Upon his return he pursues his childhood dream of becoming a Los Angeles Police Officer. In August of 1975, after nine bogus disqualifications, Moreno is finally accepted into the academy at 29 years of age. Moreno’s Mexican roots make him a groundbreaking addition to the force and following his graduation. He shows a rare talent for arresting armed suspects without using deadly force and is awarded over 70 commendations. By day, he walks a tightrope between life and sudden death. In his off hours he builds his American Dream with an apartment by the beach, a classic Aston Martin, a water-skiing boat and dates a beautiful loyal girlfriend.

    Then Moreno’s life comes crashing down. After he reports the malfeasance of his unit commander for under reporting the true number of gang related crimes in the city to the Bureau Commander. The department hierarchy goes postal on what is called a whistleblower these days. Weeks after this disclosure Moreno is away on a water-skiing trip to the Colorado River, in Arizona, when things go awry. His small vacationing group is attacked by members of the Aryan brotherhood while they are at a pub having dinner and drinks. Moreno finds himself in a bar melee with a homicidal ex-con, Crazy Gerry Hallam. After the bar altercation the ex-con grabs a sawed-off 12-gage shotgun from his vehicle but fails in his attempt to kill any of the LAPD group.

    Now the department has all the ammunition it needs to discredit Moreno and mounts a dirty seven-month internal affairs investigation. During the sham investigation, two internal affairs investigators interview the ex-con Crazy Gerry at his home and are told that he, with the help of La eMe (Mexican Mafia) is going to kill Officer Moreno. The investigators alert the department of the imminent death threat, but shockingly the department does nothing to protect Officer Moreno and his family. In essence, the department sanctions the Aryan Brotherhood to murder one of their own.

    After the internal affairs investigation, the department authorizes an equally dirty Board of Rights and he is terminated.

    After his termination, Moreno drifts from one sleazy security guard job to another while wondering when the Aryan Brotherhood is going to strike. The hit never happens, though he lives in mortal fear for his family.

    For four decades he hand-delivers a “Request for Rehearing” (RFR) to every L. A. Chief of Police from Daryl Gates to Charlie Beck, Mayor’s Antonio Villaragosa and Eric Garcetti and the L. A. City Council. However, the thuggery has no limits and Moreno’s appeals for justice fall on silent ears. Eventually he publishes his book and in doing so, finds a sense of redemption. This is where the story ends for now, but some scores have not been settled.

    About The Author

    Al Moreno was one of LAPD's best cops in the mid-1970s until he was fired unjustly for speaking out about corruption in the department. Now he works as a private investigator in LA and writes books.