William A. Rawls

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William A. Rawls

The Wire

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About Him

Living… in Baltimore, slowly but surely ascending the career ladder within the city police department. He is under great pressure from the mayors’ office and his commanding officers to “get the numbers down” – to prioritize the statistical efficiency and efficacy of his unit, rather than tackle the systemic source of crime. Nevertheless, he instills these values into his unit with ardor.

Profession… major for the Baltimore P.D. Rawls is extremely demanding of his detectives. The only thing he hates more than a case yet to be cleared is an insubordinate officer. His detectives learn the hard way that the only thing worse than his bark is his bite.

Interests...  Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries, and, as he puts it, “putting my foot up peoples’ [butts].”

Relationship Status… married, but distant from his wife and child. Rawls speaks occasionally of his family, and a photograph of them sits on his desk. However, he spends many late nights away from them, supposedly doing more “police work.” If he’s hiding something, he’s hiding it from his colleagues as well.

Challenge… dealing with the cheeky Detective Jimmy McNulty and keeping the city’s crime stats low. Rawls is a firm believer in the chain of command. McNulty repeatedly goes behind his back and disobeys orders if he feels like it, often resulting in good police work, but producing bad statistics – and an angry Rawls.

Personality… witty, mean and tough. Rawls has a sharp sense of humor, and he often puts it to use when condescending to his subordinates and exchanging banter with Sergeant Jay Landsman. That his humor does little to take the sting off his diatribes is a testament to his Lyndon B. Johnson-esque ability to intimidate.

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