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|William "The Bunk" Moreland|
|First appearance||"The Target" (2002)|
|Last appearance||"–30–" (2008)|
|Created by||David Simon|
|Portrayed by||Wendell Pierce|
|Occupation||Baltimore Police Department Homicide unit detective|
|Children||Three (two sons, one daughter)|
William "The Bunk" Moreland is a fictional character in The Wire, played by Wendell Pierce. Bunk's character is based on a retired Baltimore detective named Oscar "The Bunk" Requer. Like his best friend Jimmy McNulty, Bunk Moreland is shown to be a thoroughly competent and generally moral detective, with similar problems related to infidelity and alcohol abuse. However, his vices aren't as severe as McNulty's and he is more mindful of the department's chain of command.
Bunk attended Edmondson High School in West Baltimore, where he played lacrosse well enough to make the all-city team. He lives in Randallstown, a predominantly African-American suburb, with his wife Nadine and three children. Bunk worked as a patrolman in Baltimore's Southwestern District before becoming a homicide detective.
Bunk serves as Jimmy McNulty's lone ally in the Baltimore Police Department's Homicide Unit, informing him of its happenings while chiding him for getting involved in the Barksdale case. He is also the primary investigator for the murder of William Gant, who testified against D'Angelo Barksdale. Omar Little informs Bunk that the shooter is a Barksdale soldier called Bird, and agrees to testify against him in court. Because of this, Bunk persuades his colleague Ray Cole not to arrest Omar for the murder of Stinkum, a Barksdale associate. When Omar is at the police station, Bunk discovers they went to the same high school, beginning an ongoing association between the two. At Sergeant Jay Landsman's insistence, Bunk and McNulty review the Deirdre Kresson murder, which ultimately turns out to be related to the Barksdales and is solved as part of the final arrests of D'Angelo and Wee-Bey Brice.
With McNulty having been bumped out to the Marine Unit, Bunk is partnered with Lester Freamon, and they are quickly recognized as the most efficient detectives in Homicide. Landsman assigns them to investigate the deaths of fourteen Jane Does in a shipping container at the Port of Baltimore. They are detailed with Officer Beadie Russell from the Port Authority, who initially found the bodies. Bunk and Freamon track down the ship which carried the container, and hold it in port in Philadelphia to question the crew. None of the crew speak English, and the detectives let the ship go after learning that two crewman jumped ship after Baltimore. Based on a few sparse facts, Bunk and Freamon deduce that the women were prostitutes being smuggled from overseas, that one of the girls was murdered by a sailor after refusing sex, and the rest were killed for witnessing the crime. The murderer is one of the crewmen who fled, leaving the investigation is at an impasse. Bunk and Freamon come under heavy criticism from Colonel William Rawls for releasing the ship without getting statements.
While working the port case, Bunk worries about the William Gant murder; State's Attorney Ilene Nathan threatens to drop the charges if the police cannot find Omar. Bunk repeatedly reminds McNulty, who eventually finds Omar with help from Bubbles. Omar testifies, and Bird is imprisoned for a maximum term. Later, Bunk and Russell return to Philadelphia and find video evidence implicating Sergei Malatov, whose testimony leads to the solving of the Jane Doe murders, as well as aiding the Major Crimes Unit's investigation into stevedore union treasurer Frank Sobotka.
When the city deals with five homicides in one night, Bunk must leave his son with McNulty at an Orioles game. He quickly recognizes the scene of Omar's drug robberies, and mistakenly believes one of the victims, Tosha Mitchell, was a civilian. He continues to investigate her death even after Landsman, Rawls, and Colonel Raymond Foerster order him to find the stolen weapon of Kenneth Dozerman, who was nearly killed in a failed drug bust led by Sergeant Ellis Carver. They all consider the weapon's recovery a top priority, though he thinks it is a frivolous use of his abilities.
Bunk meets with Omar, confronting him about the "innocent" victim. Omar informs him that she was part of his crew, and says he would never kill an innocent person. As Omar states that no one will talk to Bunk about the murder, and that she died in the game, Bunk makes Omar feel guilty about his negative influence on the world due to the collapse of West Baltimore. Bunk says that predators like Omar are all that still exist in their old neighborhood, which was once a community despite its hardships. To assuage this guilt, Omar finds Dozerman's gun and returns it to Bunk. Later, Bunk is one of the investigators of Stringer Bell's murder. Bunk realizes Omar was the shooter, but does not close the case. Afterwards, he tells McNulty that the city's homicide rate will probably reach 300 by New Year's, noticing how McNulty has slowed down on his consumption of alcohol.
Bunk investigates the murder of Fruit, one of Marlo Stanfield's drug dealers. He is unable to find his main suspect, Curtis "Lex" Anderson. It becomes clear that Lex was murdered, but his body is not found and no leads are forthcoming. At the same time, Bunk is surprised at McNulty's seemingly successful attempts to get his life back on track. Omar contacts Bunk after Chris Partlow frames him for killing an innocent woman in a convenience store robbery. Bunk initially ignores him, but Omar appeals to his sense of honor. He tracks down new evidence proving that Omar's witness Old Face Andre lied, leading to Omar's release. In exchange, Bunk extracts a promise from him to never kill again. In the process, Bunk also manages to make an enemy out of Crutchfield, the detective assigned to the Andre case. Freamon transfers back to Homicide and is partnered with Bunk again. Freamon manages to find Lex's body and, in the process, more than twenty other bodies, all of which are linked to Stanfield after Bunk gets key testimony from Lex's mother.
Bunk and his colleagues in Homicide deal with budget cutbacks, including no overtime pay, until the city's financial situation resolves. The fiscal problems lead to the closure of the Major Case Unit and the reassignment of McNulty and Greggs to Landsman's squad. While investigating a probable overdose, McNulty tampers with the body and the crime scene to create the illusion of a serial killer; Bunk leaves in disgust. Later, Bunk learns that McNulty is altering old case files in order to advance the deception. Bunk enlists Freamon to talk sense into McNulty, but this plan backfires when Freamon decides that the plan could work and makes suggestions to improve it by sensationalizing the killer.
Bunk refocuses his attention on the Stanfield murders and delivers a report to Landsman that is placed immediately into a desk drawer. Landsman points out that Bunk is simply changing the date while submitting essentially the same report. Bunk angrily asserts that he is forced to repeat his requests as he is still waiting for the crime lab to process evidence. Bunk finally gets a DNA match on Partlow for the unrelated murder of Michael Lee's stepfather, but agrees to delay his case in order to allow the Stanfield wiretap to continue. He is last seen investigating a homicide with Greggs, engaging in jovial conversation similar to that he used to share with McNulty.
- Simon, David (2006) . "Post Mortem". Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets (4th ed.). Owl Books. p. 641. ISBN 0-8050-8075-9.
Rick 'The Bunk' Requer left to man the department's retirement services bureau, though his homicide incarnation lives on in Wendell Pierce's portrayal of the legendary Bunk Moreland on The Wire, right down to the ubiquitous cigar.
- "Org Chart - The Law". HBO. 2004. Retrieved 2006-07-22.
- Joe Chappelle (director), David Simon (story and teleplay), Ed Burns (story) (2008-01-06). "More with Less". The Wire. Season 5. Episode 1. HBO.
- "The Wire episode guide - episode 51 More with Less". HBO. 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-22.
- Ernest Dickerson (director), William F. Zorzi (story and teleplay), David Simon (story) (2008-01-13). "Unconfirmed Reports". The Wire. Season 5. Episode 2. HBO.
- "The Wire episode guide - episode 52 Uncomfirmed Reports". HBO. 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-22.
- Scott and Joy Kecken (directors), Chris Collins (story and teleplay), David Simon (story) (2008-01-20). "Not for Attribution". The Wire. Season 5. Episode 3. HBO.
- "The Wire episode guide - episode 53 Not for Attribution". HBO. 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-22.