Saturday 6 August 2011
There are always lots of people who care about you . . . just not necessarily the way you’d like them to care, or the people you really want to care. Like law enforcement officers if you’re a criminal. 😛
The normally sedate office was now bustling with local and visiting law enforcement officers. Hannah Thomas’ recapture was imperative. The county couldn’t have a convicted murderer and death row inmate running around free to do whatever she chose. Sheriff John Smith stood, hands on hips, exasperated expression on his face, wondering what the hell he’d done to deserve this type of chaos in his usually sleepy department.
A young female deputy, Laurie Hills, approached him with some caution. Smith never really warmed to her, despite the fact that she was fourth generation police officer. She held out a manila folder.
‘Sheriff, there’s an attorney here. Says he wants to discuss the Thomas case with you. Asked me to give this to you.’
The Sheriff snatched the folder from her hand and grumbled, ‘Got no time to see no attorney. Don’t care what he has to say.’
‘What’s so funny, deputy?’ Smith grumbled again.
‘He said you’d say that. Told me when you did, I was to give you his card.’ She held out the attorney’s business card. The Sheriff gravely examined the card he took from his deputy. A wry smile swept across his face.
‘Send him into my office, but tell him he’s only got five minutes and then I’m kicking his ass to the road.’
The Sheriff headed into his office. Hills motioned to the attorney that the Sheriff had agreed to see him. She watched him stride his way into Sheriff Smith’s office and sit himself down opposite the man.
‘Duncan Tudor. What the hell is it that you want? And what do you have to do with this Hannah Thomas mess?’ Sheriff Smith didn’t intend to exchange pleasantries with his guest.
‘Nice to see you again too, John,’ Duncan replied.
‘Get to the point Tudor,’ the Sheriff snapped.
‘Read the file. Woman’s not guilty of the crime. I want your word that your guys, and your visiting friends will treat her with kid gloves. I intend having her case re-opened, and I want my defendant. One hair out of place on her head, one broken nail, and I’ll have your ass nailed to the wall for it.’
‘You often threaten officers of the law, Mr. Tudor?’ he smirked.
‘Only when they’re narrow-minded old coots like you,’ replied Duncan.
Smith laughed and opened the file. He intently perused the first document. Intrigued by what he saw, Smith continued until he’d read every word on every page. Duncan waited and watched as Smith did so. It was clear that the Sheriff was taking his threat seriously. When he came to the last page, the Sheriff closed the folder and threw it on his desk.
‘You serious about this, Duncan?’ Smith scratched his balding head as he waited for the attorney’s response.
‘Yep. Evidence was all circumstantial. I don’t believe she did it.’
‘Makes you so sure?’
Duncan had always found it difficult to come to terms with the local manner of speech. Although he and Stevie had lived in the area for the last five years, Duncan could not adjust to everyone they dropping words from the beginning of their sentences.
‘I’ve got a hunch, John. Colin Elliot is a credible witness. Don’t you think that the evidence in her case just seemed to fall into place too perfectly? You know as well as I do, that even in the best cases, evidence doesn’t line up that well.’
Smith nodded. The attorney, as irritating as Smith sometimes found him, was right. Things never added up as perfectly as they did at Hannah Thomas’ trial.
‘’Kay, say I help you out, big man, what’s your plan?’
Duncan Tudor knew he now had the Sheriff onside.
. . . To be continued . . .