During the latter part of the 1980s, Robert Stutman led the New York field office for the Drug Enforcement Administration. His days were spent cultivating informants, and going after large-scale narcotics traffickers, mostly cocaine, heroin and marijuana.
"And I will never forget the day in late September of 1985, I was a having a staff meeting in my office...The supervisor walked into the meeting, and I'll never forget his words. He said, 'Boss, we're finding vials of this shit all over Harlem. They call it crack, and we have no idea what it is.'"