There Is A Chapter Titled “The Cops”


Long before joining the investigation into finding John Holmes in 1981, LA detective Frank Tomlinson had been involved in some major cases, like the Black Muslim shootout and brawl in 1962, as well as the Hillside Strangler case of Buono and Bianchi, among others. There was also a murder case against a Mexican Mafia member. That case is not very bizarre. What is bizarre though, is the witness in the case, Joseph Belarde Garcia, was later convicted of rape and is now known as the Central Coast Rapist.

The late seventies found Frank involved in the Garcia witness case. Garcia was a lifelong criminal, but Tomlinson and his partner, Richard Szabo, had Joe Garcia released to police custody since Joe agreed to turn state’s witness in order to try and bring down Mexican Mafia captain Arthur Blajos, known as “Conejo” (the rabbit). While released into police custody – and upon finding they shared deep Christian beliefs – Tomlinson invited Garcia to stay at his home. Joe had even babysat Frank’s two young sons. After this chapter, Garcia committed the rape of his girlfriend’s daughter. He was caught by the mother and Garcia called Tomlinson asking what to do. Frank called the police and he was arrested. Joe Garcia was convicted and served about 8 years for this crime. Garcia was married in prison and was released in 1987. But Garcia was busted again and subsequently identified by eight more rape victims. Garcia’s rap as a serial rapist is a long story – but with few supporters calling for his release claiming he was wrongfully convicted – the evidence holds up and he is currently incarcerated at Chino, and has been in prison since 1991.

Frank Tomlinson authored the book The First Crime Scene based on some of his investigations. Frank’s partner, the legendary LAPD cop Richard Szabo, said: “He was the most tenacious investigator I have ever known.”

You can read more about Frank’s cases in The First Crime Scene and also Richard Szabo’s storied LAPD career in The Streets Are Blue by Gary Farmer. Both are highly rated books on Amazon. You may also read samples from both books on Google Books.

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