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We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained

‘We Own This City’ depicts the true story of the Baltimore Police Department’s Gun Trace Task Force controversy. The crime drama series is based on Justin Fenton’s nonfiction book of the same name, published in 2021. David Simon and George Pelecanos (‘The Wire’) created it for television. The first episode, titled ‘Part One,’ introduces viewers to Sergeant Wayne Jenkins and the other members of the Boston Police Department’s Gun Trace Task Force who are involved in illegal activities and corruption.

Meanwhile, Nicole Steele, an attorney with the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, initiates an investigation against BPD officers after multiple complaints are submitted about their behavior. Here’s everything you need to know about ‘We Own This City’ episode 1 if you want to catch up on the episode’s happenings and learn more about its ending! WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!

Recap of Episode 1 of We Own This City

Sergeant Wayne Jenkins (Jon Bernthal) gives a lecture to members of the BPD Academy in the series debut episode, which airs in 2017. Jenkins is adamant that the legislation allows police officers to be harsher on the streets and even cruel if necessary. He instructs the trainees to look for cases that may lead them to narcotics and weapons, thereby justifying their techniques in achieving the desired result. The action then moves to an interrogation room, where FBI Agent Erika Jensen chats with Momodu “G Money” Gondo, a member of the Boston Police Department’s Gun Trace Task Force. Jensen inquires about Gondo’s role in drug distribution and Wayne Jenkins.

Image Credit: Paul Schiraldi/HBO

Jenkins leads a GTTF raid at Collington Square in 2017. The cops seize some drugs and a large number of guns from the scene, earning Jenkins acclaim. Jensen grills Gondo in the interrogation chamber about Antonio Shropshire and his ties to the criminal underworld. Gondo acknowledges to have been involved in robberies prior to meeting Shropshire. The action switches to 2015, when David McDougall of the Harford County Narcotics Task Force investigates a heroin ring. McDougall is led to Aaron Anderson, whom they suspect is a key player in the racket, after a bust.

Meanwhile, Nicole Steele, an Office of Civil Rights attorney, meets Ahmed Jackson and begins working on an investigation of the city’s police officers. She notes that the Office of Civil Rights has received multiple complaints about police brutality. McDougall’s crew locates Anderson using automobile trackers, but they soon understand that the BPD is also looking for the culprit. McDougall contacts the FBI after becoming skeptical of the tracker scenario. Steele’s investigation focuses on Daniel Hersl, a GTTF member renowned for excessive brutality who is the subject of multiple complaints. Steele meets with the Police Commissioner to learn why no action has been taken against Hersl and his practices.

Why Is Wayne Jenkins Arrested in We Own This City Episode 1?

Wayne Jenkins meets with higher-ranking BPD officers in the episode’s final act. Jenkins and the board are debating the city’s crime rate as well as the GTTF’s role in reducing gun and drug-related violence. As higher-ups believe that the BPD’s arrests have decreased while crime in the city has increased, Jenkins maintains that the GTTF’s arrests have increased. Jenkins is unrepentant about his and his team’s approach, and they sincerely feel they are reducing violence on Baltimore’s streets.

Image Credit: Paul Schiraldi/HBO

Jenkins is summoned to the BPD headquarters in the episode’s concluding moments to resolve a small issue. Jenkins, however, is captured by the FBI as soon as he disarms himself and enters the building. While the episode does not specify why Jenkins was arrested, it is presumably related to the BPD’s pursuit of Aaron Anderson.

Jenkins, like Gondo, is one of the corrupt cops in the GTTF, and his illicit actions will be uncovered shortly, according to the episode’s ending. To the amazement of the Police Commissioner, Jenkins does not flinch when he is detained, implying that he does not believe he done anything wrong while serving as a cop.

Throughout the show, Jenkins brags about his overly aggressive strategy to investigating and arresting suspected criminals. Everything implies that Jenkins believes himself indefensible and above the law, from calling himself “Superman” to having an unashamed attitude about police work. As a result, the episode’s conclusion marks the beginning of Jenkins’ and the GTTF’s demise.

We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained
We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained
We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained
We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained
We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained
We Own This City Episode 1 Recap and Ending Explained

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