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A knock on the closed door.
“Come in!” Joyce stood to change seats to her conference table. When the door opened, she smiled. “Kyler, right on time.”
“This is the biggest case of my career.” Kyler Harris returned the smile. “Wouldn’t miss this for anything.”
Behind her, a male voice said, “Well then, you’ve piqued my interest.”
“Thanks for coming, Agent Prichard, Agent Kennard.” Joyce invited everyone to sit at the conference table.
“You said it was urgent.” Prichard took a seat.
Underneath the table, Bette locked, then released her hand from Tina’s when they took their seats alongside Eric. When she let go, she hoped this meeting would redeem Tina in Prichard’s eyes, and he would forget his threatened Bakersfield transfer.
“Yes, it is,” Joyce said. “We’ve kept you in the dark until now for a good reason.”
Prichard’s right eyebrow raised.
“Porter, Decker, and Kennard knew someone in the government had leaked information to Caco about Diego Rojas. The raid in the Lower Bottoms was a ruse to locate Caco. It worked because someone in the Federal Building called his burner.” Joyce paused when Prichard raised both eyebrows. “After the Santa Rosa fire, they narrowed down suspects to those who knew about Diego Rojas. That meant you, your secretary, and Quintrell.”
Prichard snapped his head toward Tina. “You suspected me?”
“We knew the leak was someone in our building who had access to the Rojas file.” Tina didn’t grovel. Instead, she remained resolute. “I followed protocol and left all suspects out of the loop.”
“The point is,” Joyce said, “we eliminated you as a suspect. Today, Sergeant Porter, with the help of Agent Kennard and Sergeant Decker, confirmed that Quintrell is the leak.”
“You’re telling me the Assistant U.S. Attorney is dirty?”
“I’m telling you the Assistant U.S. Attorney is Caco’s brother,” Joyce said without a blink.
“What?” Prichard’s jaw slackened, stretching his eyes wide. “What intel do you have?”
“When these three briefed you last week that Caco had survived, while true, it was another ruse to draw out the leak. We couldn’t rule you and Carol out. Though, Quintrell had a reaction that led them to believe he was our target, so we set up surveillance on him. Today he took the bait and went to Caco’s hospital room where he met Caco’s family. Sergeant Porter engaged one of them and determined Quintrell was Caco’s brother.”