Murder for Hire

My Life As the Country's Most Successful Undercover Agent

Jack Ballentine

Thomas Dunne Books

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Jack Ballentine became a Phoenix police officer in 1978 and quickly rose to the top as one of the world’s most successful undercover operatives. His specialty: posing as an undercover hit man. None of the people who hired him had any inkling that he was actually a cop, and his work led to a perfect rate of twenty-four convictions out of twenty-four indictments on murder conspiracy charges.

Murder for Hire is Ballentine’s story. He worked with criminals of all sorts, from vengeful spouses and partners to the criminally insane, all who had one thing in common: the desire to have someone killed. Ballentine could change his character at the drop of a hat, often imitating characters and “bad guys” from television and movies. In assuming an alternate identity and developing a reputation among the Phoenix underground---bikers, strippers, junkies, and thugs---he developed an intricate network of sources who fed him work and kept him extremely busy.

All the while, the author strove for the semblance of a normal life and balanced his rough-and-tumble career with a new wife and stepson. His story is a unique look at how law enforcement delves into the heart of the criminal world.

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Book Excerpts

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From Jack Ballentine’s Murder for Hire   

I constantly battle with who I am and what I should sound like when I get calls. It becomes even more difficult in the early-morning hours when the phone rings and I’m in a deep sleep. I found it best to always answer, “Yeah,” and then let the caller carry on until I gather myself and I locate the character I need to be. It’s a tough transition from biker warlord to Mafia hit man. The phone rings all the time and I hardly ever know who the caller is . . .  

I always play hard-to-get.

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Praise for Murder for Hire

“Jack Ballentine is a force to be reckoned with. Murder for Hire delves into the seedy netherworld of murder for hire, close scrapes, and life under cover. A fascinating read.”—Kerrie Droban, author of Running with the Devil: The True Story of the ATF’s Inflitration of the Hells Angels

“He effectively captures the violence and degradation of underclass criminality, where the lives of drug dealers, bikers, white supremacists, prostitutes, strippers and career criminals intersect.”—Kirkus Reviews
 

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About the Author

Jack Ballentine

Jack Ballentine became a Phoenix police officer in 1978 and quickly rose to the top as one of the world’s most successful undercover operatives. He also served as a homicide detective for the Phoenix Police Department. He is a three-time Police Officer of the Year, and has been awarded both the International Investigator of the Year and the Medal of Merit. He currently serves as the Director of Investigations for the Phoenix Fire Department. He lives in Mesa, Arizona, with his wife.

Jack Ballentine

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Available Formats and Book Details

Murder for Hire
My Life As the Country's Most Successful Undercover Agent
Jack Ballentine

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
Thomas Dunne Books
June 2009
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429968850
ISBN10: 1429968850
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 304 pages, Includes eight pages of black-and-white photographs
$9.99

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
St. Martin's Press
St. Martin's Griffin/Thomas Dunne Books
February 2011
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312667771
ISBN10: 0312667779
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 320 pages, 8 page black-and-white insert
$14.99
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Thomas Dunne Books

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