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#107 The Skip Tracer, Part I


Sruthi Pinnamaneni follows the world's best bounty hunter on a peculiar case.


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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This episode is brought to you by better for him a new podcast from eighty people in each so Francesca Ramsay talks to visionaries in business leaders about mistakes. They ve made how they work their way through them and came out better for it. Listen unspent, FI or wherever you get your pot This episode is brought to you by a Sana. A saga is an app designed to help teams, plan, organise and execute all the work they do together. It helps you make sure nothing falls through the cracks, so you can focus on the work that matters most learn more try Osanna for free visit, Asano, dot com to get started. That's a ass, a dot com!
give up his revile about and I'm out, export and- and you are surely even in areas first yeah, I'm here with a story soap, a year ago I read this article about bounty, hunters and theirs is one line in it. That said, bounty hunters are now finding almost ninety percent of their fugitives, which I thought sounded like a really high number in this article. They say, corn, quite like the success rate, has a lot to do with technology for Skip Tracy, The term of art for locating a man on the Lamb, a man and I am a man on the lamb. So this is a thing like there's a whole group of people. There call skip tracers because people are looking for a call skips.
Dave apparently gun so good at tracking people's digital trails. That no matter who you are, if you try to hide, they can find you. So I there's a story that just totally captured my heart, which is this one guy. He was trying to find a skype who was known to have a particular. A taste for seven eleven slur bees and this guy. He got this database of all the video footage from all the local seven eleven and he ran this like they show of recognition saw well, I like found, which seven then the skip had most recently frequent and staked it out caught the guy coming out
starfleet. This sounds very much like an episode of bones. Are some guy down another? You watch bone I've seen every episode, so I of course wanted to follow one of these skip tracers, while they did their job. So I did- and I ended up in this story. It is possibly know it is definitely the most challenging like reared story. I've ever worked on ok and its centres around this one. Very tragic thing that happened in two thousand eleven. I spoke to a woman who is there that night searches are very telling me actually your name and dumb who you're ok. My name is Sir Chris story. And on a map North Carolina my brother's, namely
judge the worry, so it was early October and Chris remembers it as the school fall day, which started out really nice She and her brother, Joe and Jos, whole family. They were on vacation in this place, called kill, Devil Hills in North Carolina. We had gaol mail, There were several several Of course, we know that went down and the gas Whitefish Alma Head boat and the girls went shop, and so I dont like sharpen, so I went fishing with the guys her. You know just out some Vichy out broker fission quartet was making all cargan noise. He put it right Mugabe's actually and so we just wish
at some really. You know quality Tom that day later that evening, they all pile into a pickup truck to go to dinner and it exactly seven. Thirty, two p m there crossing this one intersection when this shabby alumina blows a flashing red light and ends up directly in for m m. We actually tableland helium, and I said we hear them and the Turk women, then the air and slipped over, three times and landed fly on its top. I really don't oh, how I made it because I went through the back window of the trial and landed underneath the truck like they said, the only things
it can. I was my feet Joe, who is in the front seat. He was killed instantly the cops all Chris, the guy driving the other car. His name is Louise Rodrigo, as he's an undocumented immigrants from Honduras and he was driving drunk, so they arrest him and then right away too Are you crazy things happen so number one? Louise is in the hospital. He was also an injured in the accident, but the police are watching his room, so he escapes like just walks right out number two police catch him and bring him to jail. But then the judge reduces his bail and he paid like seventy five hundred dollars and smocks out, but he'd already fled once right and Chris said that she felt ass if she would never see him again, and so the day he posted bail, she made sure that she was there I rushed out sounded the court room door so that I could make him to talk to him.
And I did- and I told him I said that I want you to know what kind of man you took from my family. He has three sons and I can't talk to my brother. I can't pick up the phone and call him, and because of you and he turned round and looked at me and said TAT to my attorney. That's last time she never saw him. He disappeared again. Yeah it didn't shop for export date totally vanished, and Chris tell me that this time the authorities just didn't seem that interested in finding Louise and Sir. She actually starts looking for him. She has a mug shot of him he's this guy is forties like green eyes. Buzz cut, has this scar on his temple, and so she takes this and she starts going to his old neighborhoods. Like me,
friends what the people used to know and then she's driving shook explaining why she's there yeah, I think a lot of them felt sympathetic towards her and they're trying to help her and then she starts driving to different towns where she's heard a rumour that he might be living there. Now we took this picture, two convenience stores and said to me. You ve seen this man and this this several of the store clerks were lucky I've seen him. He comes in here. Chris said that it's been five years of this five years of looking for Louise Rodriguez every day, always convinced that shit just missed him have lost friends before because they said you know, grace you're gonna have to fund certain. That makes you happy again, but I can't I can't let it go. Joe was too important. The fact someone is out there they killed. My brother knows they devastated a fan,
Molly and does not even care does not even cape there. I cannot let go up and I want him come out this past summer. Chris finally got some help in the form of a skip. Tracer named Michel Gomes. I talked about the hunters who told me: Michel is a legend like this for foot eleven mexican american women in this field of big white dudes. They said she's found con me and that of the F b I couldn't she's found stolen yacht stone oil tankers apprised array. Stallion and now she's, going to fines, Louise Rodriguez and she's doing at pro bono, and so I flew. To Texas went to a house in this small town called La Carte, which is thirty minutes out of often right it with my adventure. Gandia Marcel brings
in her house. It's atm fell asleep, given the later maybe she's eating her breakfast, which is a box of girl scout cookies. Some hours- and I ask her- were you a girl scout and she said no, but I did have to dress up as one wants to take down this drug traffickers Rosa. I had a lot of questions, but Michel spoke just kept ringing. All these cod but different cases. Accordingly, Jenny's statement last night, I usually don't guarantee everywhere, but I find everywhere even on an even finally
our and a half later, she says: ok, what's it down? Let's find this. Louise Rodrigo s little trees. This here we sit down in front of her old desktop computer was logos. Her little dog jumps into her lap of intending to go there mom. So here's how Michel plans to find Louise he's undocumented he's
can a shop and most official databases, so instead she's going to look for someone close to him. I wonder who supporting him he's hiding behind somebody that, with an established name o with some kind of establishment period, has financial means to help him. She calls his present shelter years by Means Michel says: listen. I've found located tons of people, one documented. I live in an area where there's lots of undocumented people, and I friends who are undocumented and all of them have the same problem like how do you rent a house or at least a car? If you don't have the right documents and she says the way they do it is they have a trusted free?
and with the right papers who does it for them? That's their shelter, that's their shelter. So if she can finally visa shelter, she confine Louis. So she starts with the one clue she has, which is this six year old police report. What's in the place of work, the accident date the parties and out the vehicles in question she's scanning through the report and suddenly she says: hey, look at this. The car that Louise Rodriguez was driving, that shabby Lumumba is registered to a company so she's like who runs that company she Google's and she gets this name. Mr Thomas, I need to see who is
what is it? What kind of work she does? Is he able to financially help this guy? Just a quick note, we took steps to obscure or change identifying details about certain people in the story. Okay, so Thomas she put them into the state of base, go to spot, it's called In my skip, can anybody be governing now right? She was so secretive about it. You're watching you can't, but this anear. Now it's a lot of sensitive information in there, but the outside of it looks like this looks well, there's like em, there's a good dimly lit street
It's like a very it's: a new are black and white for the area. It says, get ready, sat, find what happened when she gets into the school here. There's so much information here, so she puts in Visas friend's name and immediately. The database just start spitting out tons of addresses. When I see so many addresses like that, it gives me a flag that they ve been evicted or them constantly moving. So that they can avoid being captured, Michel says that shelter should look on paper like an upstanding citizen, so suddenly she's doubting that this friend would be shelter. Also at the friend has all these different social security birds and other social and other social with different data. But these are all different social soak had they could they be different. People know I not tonight, because this guy he's is illegal, so Michel Tommy The way someone who's undocumented could end up with all the
These illegal is theirs would be system like these illegal spots. That would be hidden, say in the back of an electronic store. Little hubs offices that they pay a paper anywhere from The knowledge and they get other paperwork their social there I ten they're all over the place and their private. If I were to go to one and I'm like oil is I would go to one and I'm like. Oh yes and it pretty much. All spanish of I was recommended to come over here who sent you that name better be in Vienna Rolodex, because if it's not they're, not gonna help me for nothing so Michel moves on from this friend. He may have lent Louis his car, but he's not the shelter shipwrecks by one the friends known associates catches. Are I this woman? So here we have a blanket. She thinks this.
The friends wife same last name lived at the same address, so we know that match mining flight see her social. So knowing of another life social to play with, because usually the woman takes her the bills Michel starting to develop a theory. Louis and his friend are both using the friends, wife, a shelter but, of course, for this theory to be correct. That wife Blanca has to look legit. So Michel goes out to find my skip and looks up Blanca and immediately. She sees, unlike her husband Blanca, has just one social. Dirty number, which is good, she's got to say clean. She cannot be afford to have any objections, because they live under her social. That's what I mean shelter, she's there shelter very quickly. She find a phone number associated with that address. Look at this, so I'm going to call her on my truck line
even though the number ass she can't see. Amazing. Somebody's and arson number, since you didn't answer which thought was a bad thing, but it wasn't mental Kate, but I note the live number so we're gonna do as I need to go to monitor data. The question Michel wants to answer now is: is this still Blanca snow,
like it. Does she still live in this address? She takes Blanca, personal information and distress, plugging it into every conceivable local municipal database, like the websites that Blanca would use frolic local electricity company, the water company, which is basically pretending to be Blanca, so that one of these websites will
just confirmed for her. Yes, blank us here and she's paying her bell is ok with I. This shit. Ok, first, a lasting company name. So at this point it's four p m. We ve been sitting in front of a computer since the morning and the next several hours is just watching the shawl tried database after database tansy be quiet MIA. I mean just to give you an example. She spends at least forty minutes at this one deed, registration site, just filling out forms, and then she hit enter. It takes you back to the homepage and my eyes are totally glazed over, but from a shot it's almost ass. She was in a stake out. She was a cop in her car looking at these websites in a way that she was like. Ok, something bad happened right now when she eating
time she does not eat. Wish you drink coffee. Now she has her true, while on her lap, her cat was sitting directly in front of the computer screen lit, who lets club just like work around me. No one can like having kids were all over the tea forces, candy property taxes to as Tax administration property cells. Let's go here at six p m. The sun goes down it. So p pm p m with barely talk, we skip there and then, ninety five p m she's on this county website, where you pay your property taxes, a political campaign. My bill bill on one or two
oh my god, and the website spits out these property taxes. Well, look at I thought that you got two thousand these people and then we may come to America. They invest in the land. Ok, they invest whatever they get looks strategy or to procure two thousand to do in camera paid. I gotta put this out Blanca, ITER, out pay the taxes on these two houses and car last month, she's decisions, definitely there and now She there either she's like pretty wealthy or she shelter like AL
she's, making purchases that could be further before other people exactly so there might be. Multiple people living in the home with her and Michel believes that one of those people could be her subject: Luis Rodriguez. She has the sceptics in her sites. This episode is brought to you by better for it a new podcast from eighty p hosted by Francesca Ramsay. We all make mistakes.
Better, for it looks at how mistakes have shaped the lives and careers of visionaries and business leaders and helps them think differently about what their working for you'll hear from an entrepreneur who ventured out on his own, and so I went out. I took seven hundred dollars. I had in the bank, but my own pickup truck, took some flyers business cards in a week later ahead of business and hr rule breaker, whose learned why we all care about work in the first place that you are proud of the work that you do. You want to be able to tell your friends it that you want to be able to feel like you're, making a difference, you'll hear how they work their way through their mistakes and came out better for listen on Spotify wherever you get. Your PA, casts this so it is brought to you by Sana picture. This work where you spend less time juggling email meetings and status, updates and more time doing the work that matters. The most your team. That's the world economy,
bill to create a saga is an app designed to help teams plan, organise and execute all the work they do together its built to give teams, clarity, so you can all understand your goals and how to achieve them together and whatever your project is a sonnet can help reduce the busy work that waste your time from small companies to global enterprises, more than a million teams across a hundred and ninety five countries get work done with Sata, learn more try Asano for free visit, assign a dot com to get started. That's a s. Dna dot com, welcome back to the show before the break. Michel fetlocks you'd have very good idea of where Louise was so now Michel need someone local, like someone in North Carolina to gather more information. I Michael how doing
She calls a bounty hunter. She knows in North Carolina Clarion call. You right now to thirty of their right: ok, ear! You posted there. Both pull up bonkers address on Google Earth thing does not permit me to stretch out really bad bargain vendor and country Damn trailer park, two girl and she says: hey, listen, I need you to go and route through the garbage draft. Basically, she wants to see what meal is coming into. That house like who is actually living in the house, because maybe Louise Rodriguez he's getting male right activity and also she send them photo of Louise Rodriguez yeah, and if you see that hunger in their shit she said When you see him, don't do anything, I want to be the one who catches, em and shrank away. She's like planning her trip to North Carolina. She says it's gonna take a couple of weeks so like at that point, does she held a family until I think I've got your guy
No Michel is actually never spoken to Chris story or anyone in Jos, family she's, never met them, does know them, but aren't they their people that hired her no Michel at first? She hadn't wanted to tell me who her client was. She said she had to get that person's permission. It turns out that she was hired by this group called the remembrance project and the remembrance project its run by a woman named Maria Espinosa. You probably haven't heard of her by I have not yet I think she actually perverse it. That way like she doesn't talk about herself much, but I think you ve seen her at least one, Do you remember just a few days after Trump took office, he signed that big executor. In order to one where he sang he's. Gonna build wall improvements
had woman standing right behind him, Molly signing that's Maria Espinosa. There is actually this video of her. Let me just foot up it's her giving congressional testing any earlier this year, my name is Maria Spinoza. My testimony is based upon my nearly eight years of travel across the country with the remembrance project, an organization that advocates for those families whose loved ones were killed by illegal aliens. You see her and she is, in this light, crisp loop, laser and she's neatly laying out this. Picture of America that she has seen in our travels one that is violent and unsafe? Based upon preliminary information, we believe that the american stolen lives may number in the tens of thousands five years after Chris Stories, brother died level. She got a call from Maria who didn't know and Maria says: hey, listen! Will you come and tell your story at this big event that I'm organizing an otter you want at first I told her Nobody-
long ago, and as I did, you say no, because I get You know when I talk about it, a lot it it does say at me and it does. But you know I think, with the baby S day, Condor sends me back in a tailspin com. The idea that we are- and I tell you what is one of the best things I have ever done- Christians applying to Houston to be a part of Maria's. She calls it. The stolen lies quilt. It's not actually are caught. It's a line of family members who stand behind her while she is giving a speech and they're holding up pictures of the people they ve lost. When Chris arrived, she said that Maria was so welcoming. She had never met me. Bill is like that I mean they knew about my family than Numa brothers. Nineteen, oh, what like they got mixed up about which family member you were all you know. You know.
Just like you were spatial, and I felt sincere. Oh, yes, is definitely I wanted to understand Maria's interest in Chris and and Louise Rodriguez. I asked her to do an interview at first she was hesitant, but there were negotiations. Finally, she agreed so this pass march. We talked a house in DC, her husband, TIM was there to the two of them. They started the remembrance project together, and they told me that before that days, to spend their free time fundraising for childhood diseases like they were not particularly politically active. In fact, we hadn't attend the town hall I think, until after we got involved, so we were not everyone glitch. What we were doing is just kind of living our lives. You know Maria was helping kids who have cancer. She is help because was by the way I was. I was designing roads, bridges in Texas,
and so at the time before we can were awakened by this news that we saw we were like most people will think that our representatives were caught taken care business for us, the news item as referring to just then it's actually one specific new stuff. Free from September of two thousand sex officer. Rodney jobs will be buried on Wednesday. He was murdered, allegedly by this man, one Leonardo Quintero. It was the second time then a year at that and undocumented immigrants are shot a cop in Texas and TIM and Maria said that they were wondering if there was some kind of pattern. I call the round the police department ratify it nation out what they wouldn't give me information, and then I notice that if I were just Google child killed by immigrant, and story after story after story, and so I started,
mounting. Now on spreadsheet, these sorts of stories there, the kind that you find on bright Bart now, but not back, then back then many mainstream, Republicans or pro immigration. They didn't want to risk the hispanic vote and these victims were evidence in an argument that, basically, nobody wanted to make and so timid Maria, when they are calling the people on the spreadsheet they find themselves on the phone with people who maybe hadn't even shared their stories before next thing. They knew according to Maria she's meeting them for cough. Even going along with some of them to murder trials, and she says it just became her life. I'm just curious, like There is a world in which you could have said. You know what we're gonna just keep working with fund raising with these kids that have this
terrible disease. Why not focus on that? Unlike why this will? I think one point this issue is forever is permanent and it's just you know. I think that your story although my guess is here because because he knows me their families and it's not something, I wonder do, however, if their suffer you throw away I can't we just go and listen we're not even you note directly affected and in some of these cases,
a fourteen year old girl just shot in the back five yards from her safety from her home or a gate, and then a mother, I've stabbed the heart with the three its knife. Over wanting to hijack her can I am when, when people talk about crime. Within the immigrant population like legal or illegal, they say statistically, the whole. There is far less crime in these communities and therefore, like particular anecdotes, it doesn't speak to a larger group, will two things which the report has done is mixed, emigrate, crime and Google, alien crime. What Maria referring to there is this big government report that came out in twenty eleven and as absolutely wrong faults? No, so, where concern about illegal aliens who commit crime and
some, like historians case that takes place more often than you think. So. This question of how often like how many times last year did undocumented immigrants commit crimes. This turns out to be surprisingly difficult to answer like we're not even sure exactly how many undocumented immigrants are. Even in the? U S, I talk to several p, for academic statisticians. Think tanks like across the political spectrum and none of them could agree on a number. They did agree that Maria's numbers tens of thousands of criminals are just way too high, but the thing that Maria has discovered is that you don't even have to worry about the numbers. When you have these horrifying stories, their powerful, they become
a weapon in the right hands and in twenty fifteen, timid Maria finally met someone who wanted to use it. I have met with many of the great parents who lost their children. Just saying you're cities and open borders, so many people, so many many people so set three weeks after tramp announced his candidacy he and Maria and the families they met in private, and then he is giving all these speeches with the backdrop of remembrance project families extending behind him at this other event. In Houston, he's talking about the criminal sneaking across the border and killing people, and at one point he actually turns around looked straight at the families, including like Chris Story, was there any makes them this promise the money and aggression
who have committed crimes but escape justice, fled the jurisdiction or otherwise never caught, and many of the folks are in that position where even sometimes know who they are, and yet there never caught we're gonna catch him in the weeks after Trump one deal Jean Marie TIM decided that the time was right to try something new. They would find one of these guys like one of the emigrants who committed a crime and gotten away. They picked their first case law he's Rodriguez. The man who, five years ago, fled after being arrested for killing Chris Stories, brother, timid Maria wanted to help Chris find justice sure, but Lou
has a value beyond that as a poster child in this larger wore their waging sir now the best Skip tracer in the world. Michel Gomes is hunting Louise Rodriguez, it's no longer just one gig for a bounty hunter or a family seeking closer. It's part of something bigger. Now Our two Michel goes to North Carolina to complete our mission there's the mom it better to get the daughter Blood has blankets, daughter There's the dog is no problem:
reply always hosted by Pga Vote and me Alex Golden the shows produced by the minimum any fee abandon damietta, Maar, Kitty and Austin Mitchell. No production. Help from John Hanrahan are was TIM Howard are in turn, is Anatoly fact checking by Michel Harris. We were mixed by red, Kwan and Cable Linsky extra. Special thanks this week to HANS Leonards Scott Maclean, the third Alfonzo Aguilar, Walter Ewing, Alex Neurons, Susan long shall middle stat, Don Rosenberg, Frank bean iris. Cuban steed camera Rhoda, Joscelyn Johnson Nelson photos Ryan faithfully, Nick Ghoulish Chloe procedures and Emily Kennedy.
Matt Labour is when you are just sitting on a couch flipping through channels, and you find a movie, you haven't seen in a long time and you just sit there and watch the whole thing. Our theme song by the mysterious break, master cylinder and our add music is by build buildings. A website is reply, all done ninja you can listen to the show on Apple POD, Spotify, or wherever you get your PA guests. Thanks for listening.
Transcript generated on 2020-02-13.