"Two men dead on US Army issue morphine. That makes it an Ad Vice case. Beat it!"
Archie Colmyer

The Black Caesar is a Vice case in L.A. Noire. This is the first case Cole Phelps takes on the Vice Desk after being promoted from the Homicide Desk.


Phelps and Earle report to the scene of two dead junkies, Cornell Eustace Tyree and Tyrone Anthony Lamont, found in a squalid apartment at 6358 Yucca St., Apt. 5, in Hollywood. Surgical tubing found still wrapped around their limp, track-pocked arms. Their drug of choice: government issue morphine. Your job is to track the morphine back to the supplier and bring them down.

Persons of Interest


  • Investigate Crime Scene
  • Search Black Caesar Food Hut
  • Apprehend the Fry Cook
  • Interview Fleetwood Morgan
  • Trace Jermaine Jones' Address
  • Investigate 'Ottie's'
  • Search Jones' Booking Agency
  • Subdue Jones' Goons
  • Interrogate Jermaine Jones
  • Find Ramez Removals Address
  • Investigate Ramez Removals
  • Apprehend Merlon Ottie
  • Interrogate Merlon Ottie
  • Pursue the Removals Truck
  • Apprehend José Ramez
  • Search Polar Bear Ice Co.
  • Apprehend Lenny Finkelstein

Detailed Walkthrough

Crime Scene: Tyree & Lamont Apartment

6358 Yucca Street, Apartment #5.

"They really picked a prize shithole for our first date."
―Roy Earle

Investigate the crime scene over at the junkies' apartment. It will be on the second floor, all the way at the end of the porch. When you walk through the front door there will be a Black Caesar cup. Further investigate it to discover tape on the bottom. Continue searching the apartment to discover a number of clues.

Stencil Details

Numbers slip

Found in the right pocket of the wallet on the floor.
Description Partial betting slip found in wallet of overdose victim
Clue White.png Clues Numbers slip

Strange doodle

Found on the table next to the body in the armchair.
Description Note drawn with cherry, bell and 'WIN' in sequence
Clue White.png Clues Strange doodle

Morphine syrettes

Found on the floor near the body in the armchair.
Description 1.5cc solution of morphine tartrate, US Army surplus
Clue White.png Clues Morphine syrettes

Radio station note

Found in the pocket of the body on the floor, inside his wallet.
Description Note found in possession of Cornell Tyree, reads: 'JJ always listens to 275FM'
Clue White.png Clues Radio station note

Popcorn cups with morphine

Found on the kitchen counter.
Description Black Caesar popcorn cups affixed with morphine syrette
Clue White.png Clues Popcorn cups with morphine
Morphine syrettes (Updated)
Objective White.png Objectives Search Black Caesar Food Hut

Note: In some cases, you may need to investigate the dead man on the chair in order for the investigation music to stop.

Black Caesar Food Hut

1762 Ivar Avenue.

See also Collectibles, below.

When you arrive at the food hut, a short cutscene will ensue after which you'll have to chase the vendor, Fleetwood Morgan, down on foot, and engage in a fist-fight. Once you have him, search the hut for clues.

Stencil Details

Numbers racket

Found inside the trumpet mute in the bottom right of the suitcase.
Description 'Ottie's' illegal gambling operation and numbers racket
Clue White.png Clues Numbers racket
Location.png Locations Numbers Operation

Blue Room pass

Found next to the trumpet mute.
Description Musician's 'admit one' pass for the Blue Room jazz club
Clue White.png Clues Blue Room pass
POI White.png P.O.I.'s Jermaine Jones

Morphine for distribution

Found by opening the box next to the popcorn machine.
Description Large quantity of morphine syrettes ready for over-the-counter sale
Clue White.png Clues Morphine for distribution

Now go over to Morgan and talk to him.

Interview Fleetwood Morgan

Question Response Response (Remaster) Evidence Clue/Location/P.O.I/Lead/Objective
Morphine overdose victims Lie Accuse Popcorn cups with morphine or Morphine for distribution Clue.png Distributor identified
Number slips recovered Doubt Bad Cop

After talking, use the phone next to the food hut to trace Jermaine Jones' address, then head there. Don't go to Merlon Ottie's office yet, you don't have the evidence you'll need to catch him in a lie.

Jermaine Jones' Musical Booking Agency

5528 Santa Monica Boulevard.

Climb the stairs and look at the building directory nearby to see that Jones' office is #238. Go inside and talk to Jones. He will begrudgingly let the detectives look around.

Go to the big radio and turn on the volume, choose FM band and tune the frequency to 275. The top of the machine will open and you will be forced into a brawl with Jones' goons. The radio includes $5000, morphine, Ottie's number card, 4 ounces of marijuana and a Ramez Removals sticker.

Stencil Details

Morphine syrettes

Found inside the radio after discovering the secret stash.
Description 1.5cc solution of morphine tartrate, US Army surplus, circulating in bulk
Clue White.png Clues Morphine syrettes (Updated)

Although it will not give Phelps another clue in his notebook, after inspecting the items in the radio's compartment, you can walk behind Jones' desk and inspect a smaller radio, also with a Ramez Removals sticker on it. Cole tells Jones he hopes none of his property is purloined, to which Jones replies (rather unconvincingly) that he has a receipt for it... somewhere.

Now go over and talk to Jones.

Interview Jermaine Jones

Question Response Response (Remaster) Evidence Clue/Location/P.O.I/Lead/Objective
Army Surplus morphine Doubt Bad Cop POI.png Lenny Finkelstein
Involvement of 'Ottie' Lie Accuse Distributor identified Clue.png Finkelstein identified
Link to Ramez Removals Doubt Bad Cop

The "Link to Ramez Removals" option will not appear if you don't select the sticker in the larger radio. It's easy to miss due to its location; it's above the other items when you search the radio.

Use the gamewell next to your parked car to get the address of Ramez Removals, then head over to the Numbers Operation.

Numbers Operation

1456 North Bronson Avenue

Merlon Ottie's office is up the stairs. Go to the slot machine and use it; if you see a symbol in its respective position, press "hold" on that slot. The correct symbol order is gathered from the "Strange doodle" clue discovered at the crime scene (Cherry, Bell, WIN). Once they are in their positions the lid will open and reveal Ottie's secret stash.

Now you'll have to chase after Ottie. He is fairly easy to catch, just stay on him until he runs into a bar then run around the building and locate the other exit. You can either wait for him to come out or just step inside and catch him. If you fail to do that, he will eventually run into some pedestrians and you should have enough time to reach him. If you don't catch him on the streets, he hits a dead end going down an alleyway.

After he's been caught you will go back to his office and interview him. Earle will hand you Ottie's cane. Further investigate it by opening the handle and you will find a new clue.

Stencil Details

IOU note

In a hidden compartment inside Merlon Ottie's cane.
Description Ramez 'promises to pay to Merlon Ottie esquire the sum of 231 dollars and no cents'
Clue White.png Clues IOU note

Then Phelps will have the opportunity to question Ottie.

Interview Merlon Ottie

Question Response Response (Remaster) Evidence Clue/Location/P.O.I/Lead/Objective
Army surplus morphine Lie Accuse Finkelstein identified
IOU note from Ramez Truth Good Cop
Link to Lenny Finklestein Doubt Bad Cop

In the Switch remastered version of the game, the "Link to Lenny Finklestein" question will not appear.

If you have found all the evidence up to this point, you will only ask the first two questions here.

Now it's time to go to Ramez Removals.

Ramez Removals

Corner of Sunset Boulevard and Wilson

Upon arrival, there is another chase scene. Other LAPD units will assist in the chase. After pursuing the truck, you'll be back at Ramez Removals. Go inside to look for clues. To the left will be a desk area; look in the records book and tap on "Polar Bear" and "Merlon." There is a also a newspaper to collect here..

Follow the water to the back of the warehouse and climb the ladder up to the crane. Use the crane to pick up a box to clear the entrance to the room, which looks like a white square structure with refrigeration units on top. Go inside and check the block of ice; after this, you are able to shoot it. After that, you have to look through a delivery book at the front desk and select any order from Polar Bear Ice Company.

After that, a cutscene will ensue wherein the Polar Bear Ice Company delivery truck pulls up and Ramez runs inside the building. Phelps and Earle will then need to chase and subdue Ramez in a shootout.

Polar Bear Ice Company

7112 Hawthorn Avenue

See also Collectibles, below.

You get in a chase/shootout with Lenny Finkelstein and his gang. Chase them through the factory and kill his men. At the same time, halfway into the chase, you end up in a giant freezer. In the back is a set of stairs up to a landing where Lenny is. Climb the stairs; a cutscene occurs where afterwards you have to shoot Lenny the Fink. Now look through the crate at the back of the office and find the morphine. Case closed.

Case Briefing

"Reassignment by special request. This time it's the Administrative Vice squad, Hollywood Division, and the LAPD's own movie star cop. Myself and Detective Earle have been detailed to investigate the overdose of two male Negroes in an apartment on Yucca Street. We're most interested in the source of their supply - dangerous pure morphine, US Army surplus."

Case Notes

  • "The death of Lenny Finkelstein should keep Administrative Vice in the headlines, for now."
  • "A dead kingpin means nothing without evidence and witness testimony to bolster the case."



  • When you are investigating the junkie's apartment you will find a piece of paper with a 'strange doodle' drawn upon it (in fact, easily recognisable slot machine symbols, specifically: cherry, golden bell, and the word "WIN"). Next to it is a sheet of music (bars, musical notes and lyrics) titled 'All In My Head,' attributed to composers Andrew Hale and Simon Hale. Both of them are the actual composers of this game's score.
  • While chasing Merlon Ottie you run through a restaurant bearing resemblance to the diner in the movie Pulp Fiction. You can hear a patron exclaim “This is a tasty burger!”, a line first uttered by Samuel L. Jackson’s character, Jules Winnfield, in said movie (although the line can be heard repeatedly throughout the game as one of the stock phrases recorded to be used as backround/incidental NPC chatter).
  • The unique delivery trucks outside Ramez Removals cannot be entered, and do not count towards the Auto Fanatic Achievement/Trophy.
  • The establishing shot of the interior of Ramez Removals - a high-angled shot looking down on a warehouse filled with boxes and furniture is a possible reference to the closing scene of Citizen Kane (the music cue here also pays tribute to the movie). The name of Kane's auteur, director, and star, Orson Welles, will also appear in the registry of Hotel El Mar in the next case, "The Set Up."
  • On Jones' radio, if you set the wave selection dial to shortwave signals ("SW"), you'll be able to tune into so-called number stations - there are many of them (on one frequency a man calls out numbers in Spanish, on another a child-like voice is doing the same in Russian, as examples). They are in the game strictly as an easter egg and Cole will not comment on them.
  • When examining the number slip in Jones' radio you can see a vinyl record lying inside the top-left corner of the machine. The text on the record is actually in Swedish - it says "drag skivan utåt före vridning" which translates to "pull the disc out before turning."
  • Phelps will charge Morgan with resisting arrest in addition to drug trafficking even if you catch Morgan before the fight scene.
  • Even when Phelps arrested Morgan before the fight scene, there was a black blood on Morgan's mouth as if he had failed a duel with Phelps.

Video Walkthroughs


  • In the PS3 version, if you move the wrong crate with the crane in the warehouse, put it down, and then move the correct one, Earle won't enter the cold room. Glitch has been recently fixed due to an update from an earlier date.
  • On the Switch, Earle may not enter the freezer and also may get stuck in the warehouse. Once the cut scene begins upon arrival, at the Polar Bear Ice Company, Earle will be there and it does not count against you.
  • You can occasionally hear Rusty Galloway's voice if you drive recklessly, instead of Roy's.
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