The other legendary EME figure was Joe (Pegleg) Morgan, an Anglo man from East Los Angeles with a mastery of Spanish slang. He first went to prison when he was 16, for murdering the husband of his 30-year-old lover. Now 63 and serving a life sentence for another killing, Morgan is regarded as a wily businessman and the de facto kingpin of the organization.
In 1974, the FBI first became aware of Joe Morgan, a man who had inherited his nickname from his father, Joe Morganes, who had once been one of the early proprietors of the Coliseum Park Hotel, but now was a neighborhood resident in East Los Angeles. Joe Morgan, a mostly black young man, would often hawk newspapers in a white Lincoln Continental bearing the familiar Morganes insignia, and his hustle was his ticket into the circles of white prostitution, drugs, and mob-related enterprises. In 1975, a process server in the California Senate would find Morgan sitting in a back booth of a bar in L.A. County, impeccably clothed, dressed in slacks and a blazer, looking like exactly the kind of man who makes it through the political machine of county government, sleek and well-manicured with beady, slightly protuberant eyes. After the GOPs landslide victory in 1974, Morgan met and married a young 29-year-old beauty named Linda DeJesus, who would one day turn into the unwitting source of knowledge and information for FBI agents as they came to know Joe Morgan. d2c66b5586