The Crime Wave was masterminded by Brian Muldoon, a rogue police officer. Grouping a number of super-villains together, the Crime Wave was sent to loot the Diamond District and create chaos in the city. The group was very successful, as Plant Man created giant vines around the district. Despite the intervention of Captain America and the Falcon, the crew made off with a great deal of loot. While the Scarecrows birds kept Captain America at bay, the Eel blasted the Falcon out of the sky. When Captain America went to catch and rescue his partner, the Crime Wave escaped.
When attacked in their headquarters again by Captain America and the Falcon, the Crime Wave again defeated the duo. Plant Man created a giant vine which choked the two heroes into unconsciousness. The Crime Wave also captured a snooping Leila Taylor and agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. Sharon Carter.
Unfortunately, the Cowled Commander wanted the two heroes placed in a steel room and gassed while he gloated over a television monitor. Captain America discovered that the Viper's toxins had created a "super strength" within his body. The Captain tore down a steel door. And the two heroes soon attacked the Crime Wave again. This time the Falcon's bird Redwing took the Plant-Man's gun. The two heroes quickly made short work of the villainous team.
Captain America and the Falcon then captured the group's leader and un-masked the "Cowled Commander" and found that the leader was Steve Rogers disgruntled police sergeant.