The Garden Island reports today that Kauai police officer Darla Abbatiello has settled her federal lawsuit against the county. Abbatiello, you may recall, contended she was “harassed, hospitalized and demoted” after reporting claims made by a suspected drug dealer that an alleged ice dealer had paid a police sergeant, who retired last Friday, $6,000 for protection from arrest.
Abbatiello’s settlement brought to mind this piece, which I wrote last year about a time when federal investigators were on the island looking into allegations about local cops involved in the methamphetamine, or ice, trade.
It’s long been rumored that the cops control Kauai’s ice trade, prompting calls for federal reviews that have been officially demanded and reportedly launched, although the FBI will neither confirm nor deny the existence of any such investigation.
But the tweakers on the North Shore know the rumors are true because they’re pale, bulking up — code words for an ice drought. All the lost boys who aren’t sleeping, or eating, stop each other at the beach parks, or on the street, where they exchange a standard greeting: “Who’s got the shit?”
The small time dealers have no supply to meet the demand, but still their customers keep calling, pressing for a big bag, a little bag, something, anything, unwilling to accept the response: “How many times I gotta tell you guys, I no more da shit?”
It’s totally, utterly dry, and word spreads quickly through the coconut wireless that the flow has stopped because the feds are in town, interviewing disgruntled police officers who claim that other cops do run the shit.
The bruddahs don’t care who makes the deals; they just want the shit. It’s been ten days, longer than many of them have been clean in ten years, and they’re getting restless, irritable, sharp-tongued, abrupt.
A few say they’re over it already, but more roam about incessantly, looking for somebody, anybody, nobody’s got the shit. One or two catch an occasional crack and claim they’re flying; abstinence, it seems, heightens the rush, a revelation that fuels the excitement of others impatiently awaiting their turn at the glass pipe, hopefully certain it won’t be much longer because, after all, the feds can’t stay in town forever.