Crime Scenes Revisited

I wrote this story in a different style wanting to see which one is better. Let me know what you think!

Once in a while something will happen in life that after it has occurred things will never be the same again, if a person is really lucky that something will be a good thing and the things that happen subsequently are amazingly good, but the other possibility is that something incredibly evil will occur and that something terrible is the result. The following is a story about one of the latter types of occurrences. The things that couldn’t ever be undone and the chain of events that unfolded took a lifetime for the truth of them to be discovered.

Two little girls are huddled up by the fire in a small cabin on a beach by the ocean. They have a pile of magazines on the floor in front of them and they have one spread out on the floor in that are both intensely concentrating on.

“Look, here it mentions that this murder happened in Oregon!”

“Let me see. Where?”

“Right here.”

“Neat.”

“In a small town in southern Oregon a 16 year old girl was walking home from school one day but she never made it home.”

The girls were 6th graders and they were at the coast for their spring break along with their mothers and sisters. It had been raining the whole time from the minute they got there and so they had been forced to find inside entertainment. They were delighted to discover a wonderfully horrible treasure trove of the potboiler style publication of “True Detective.”  Their mothers would never have allowed the girls to read the magazines if they had realized what they contained in the pages, stories of rape and murder in language that was not appropriate for young teenaged girls, but they hadn’t noticed these magazines that had been in with the assorted comic books and other reading materials that the coffee table rack was stocked with.

Headlines like “Stabbing Death of the Blonde Babysitter” and “Case of the Traveling Killer” were eye candy to the curious little minds that wanted to be scared to death!

This classic potboiler magazine was complete with grisly crimes and gruesome descriptions of them and the two girls managed to scare themselves silly, delight in reading the lurid details of the terrible real life crimes.

They were delighted to discover a story in there set in their own state and eagerly read the story. The story they were reading was of a 16 year old boy who had murdered a 16 year old retarded girl and the crime took place in town that the girls had actually been to.

“This says the boy who killed the girl’s name was Elmer. My dad has a brother named Elmer and he used to be in jail, but I don’t know why. I just met him and he was really nice so it couldn’t be him.”

“Look Mary Lou, this says Elmer Bradley. That’s his name.”

That was too exciting to not follow up on.

“Mom, what did Elmer got jail for?”

“Why?”

“We were reading a magazine and it had a story that had a man with his name in it that went to jail. He also lived in Oregon.”

“Let me see it?”

They were forced to show the stash of magazines in order to get an answer.

“Where did you get these from?”

“They were here under the coffee table.”

Shelly’s mother read part of the story and looked at the girl’s. “Yes that is Dave’s brother but this is an exaggerated version of what happened. I don’t think you should be reading these magazines, find something else to do.”

The young man walked down the path that had formed along next to the river and as he walked along he kicked the little rocks that had rolled onto the trail back towards the steep rock wall that lined the other side opposite from the river.

     All of a sudden he stopped and looked around, he heard sounds coming from farther on up the trail, it was the sound of someone walking on it and he quietly slipped behind a tree growing on the bank of the river and he waited to see who was approaching.

     The sounds of someone’s feet walking on the dirt trail were very faint. As he peered through the brush from where he was standing the young girl he had been waiting for appeared on the trail beyond a bend in it. He quietly stayed hidden behind the tree and waited for her to walk by. It was a fairly large tree with a cluster of bushes growing at the base of it so that he was completely hidden as the approached.

     After she walked by where the young man was hiding he picked up a large rock from by the river and slipped up behind her. She immediately fell face forward on the trail and he immediately took off running frantically away. He crossed the shallow river up ahead and one of his shoes got caught in between some rocks in the river and when his foot slipped out of the shoe he just kept on running as fast as he could.

     Unbeknownst to the young man there was someone else observing what had occurred from another hiding place behind another tree. This fact would not be known to anyone for many years, no one knew there had been an eye witness to this.

    The young man ran home as fast as he could and never stopped to look back. When he got home he realized he had lost one of his shoes so he took the other one off and took it out to the trash pile outside the old house that he lived in with his mother, father and four of his five brothers and buried it under the trash that was waiting there to be burned.

     The news spread through the tiny little school as soon as everyone arrived.

“Did you hear about Betsy?”

“Hear what?

“They found her on the trail by the river, and she was dead. Somebody killed her!”

“I bet Elmer did it. Yesterday I hear Tom teasing him about getting her pregnant. Elmer started crying. He is a retard just like she was. I am going to go tell the teacher.

      The boy hadn’t gone to school the next because he was scared. When the police came to the house they had the shoe that they had found in the river by the girl’s body. When they found that it was the same size as the boy wore they searched the property and found the shoe he had hidden outside. The police figured that when he had been teased about her he got scared and solved the problem the only way he knew how to, with a rock.

The trial was held in the nearest large town and didn’t last very long as the 16 year old mentally challenged plea bargained to a 10 year sentence for involuntary manslaughter

`Jail hadn’t been easy for the boy and when he was released he was taken in by the church in the small town he grew up in and worked for them until his mother got old and needed his help around the house. He moved in with her along with a woman who he had met at the church and he married her and had two children with her.

Lillian had divorced Elmer’s father after he went to jail and started doing household chores for other people, eventually she ended up being a caretaker for a fairly well to do man. She and her sons had very little contact with the ornery drunk that she had left. When she died she left everything she had to Elmer and that was alright with the other brothers because they had all made a success of their lives.

     On his deathbed Harlan confessed to a priest that he had been hiding behind a tree when his son hit the girl over the head. He also confessed that she hadn’t died from that, she died because he killed her because it was his baby she had been carrying. He needed to get rid of the terrible secret he had been hiding for over thirty years before he died he said.

     There was nothing Elmer could do to get back the ten years he spent in prison but at least his name was cleared and his children had the peace of mind knowing their father was not a murderer.

     The little girls that read about this story in the magazine were very pleased to find out that the 16 year old boy in the story they read had been innocent even if it took a very long time to come out.

This is a work of fiction. Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead is purely coincidental.

Advertisements

CRIME SCENES

CRIME SCENES

Once in a while something happens in someone’s life that after it has occurred things will never be the same ever again. If a person is really lucky that something will be a good thing and the things that happen subsequently are amazingly good, but unfortunately the other possibility is that something truly evil occurs and the things that follow that will never be the same again as a result of the initial action are incredibly terrible. The following is a story about one of those latter types of occurrences that couldn’t ever be undone and the chain of events that unfolded as a consequence of it and the truth of it might take a lifetime for the truth of it to never be fully discovered.

FADE IN

Scene I  A copper colored Pontiac Firebird car is traveling down a heavily forested back road, it is the 40 mile scenic side trip from Glendale to Riddle that is right off of I-5 freeway south from Cottage Grove, and north of where they had started the morning drive from Ashland, Oregon. About halfway from the start of this side trip the car slows down at a wide spot just off the road, it doesn’t pull over but speeds back up and goes another few miles farther and pulls over at the next wide spot right off of the main road and comes to a stop.  An older man gets out of the car first and he looks around and then looks back to the car and motions for the rest of the occupants of the car to come and join him. An older woman and a younger woman get out of the car. They start walking over to where the man is standing.

Man:                           I am pretty sure that this is the place.

Young woman:          What do you mean you think that this is the place?

Man:                           I think this is where I lived when I was a kid.

Young Woman:         What do you mean that this is where you lived as kid? There isn’t anything here.

Man:                           Over there is where the box car was and over there is where we had our garden.

Young Woman:         How do you know that?

Man:                           Because the box car was right under these power lines, we had a line hooked up to the pole so we had electricity.

Young Woman:         Are you serious?

Older Woman:           Dave grew up in a boxcar along the side of the railroad tracks, it isn’t here anymore. You didn’t really think that there was anything here did you?

Young Woman:         Yeah, just call me stupid but of course I did, why else would we be coming here. Dad said he lived in a box car next to the railroad tracks, I don’t see any box car here.

Man:                           They hauled the old boxcar off twenty years ago.

Young Woman:         I am confused. I thought we were coming here to see where you lived. You never told me that there wasn’t anything here anymore. What exactly are we supposed to be looking at?

The man walks over to where the railroad tracks are just beyond the wide spot in the road they had pulled the car onto.

Man:                           Right here is where the boxcar was and over here was our garden. Right here are the rocks around where we had the fence around the garden to keep the deer out of it.

The young woman walks over to where the man is standing and looks at where he is pointing.

Young Woman:         Do you mean to tell me that these scattered rocks are supposed to be the border around the invisible garden?

Man:                           It was right here and over there on the other side of the tracks was where the boxcar was.

Older Woman:           Right here is where Dave lived for the first 5 or 6 years of his life, I have been here before and it looks just the same as it did before. (She is laughing)

Younger Woman:      I am sure it does since there is nothing here. Why did we come here this time if you already knew there was nothing here? I sort of understand why we spent an hour in the cemetery in Glendale looking at the family graves, at least we were really looking at something, but this… this makes no sense to me.

Older Woman:           This place has great sentimental value for Dave, he has been really wanting to visit here again since his father died last year, we went to the cemetery in Glendale last year like we did today when his father died, but we came with his brother Cliff and Dave didn’t get to come and visit this place and he really wanted to.

The old man walks away from where the two women are standing and continues looking around the site.

Man:                           Back here is where we had the little shack we hung the venison in and stored the vegetable out of the garden.

The younger woman walks over there with an incredulous look on her face.

Younger Woman:      How can you tell, I don’t even see even a small amount of evidence like “ten little rocks” that supposedly formed the garden here?

Man:                           I know where it was located from where the garden was.

The young woman is having a little trouble containing her frustration at having gone on what seems like a wild goose chase to her. She couldn’t believe that he was looking for something that was only there in his imagination.

Young Woman:         I really assumed that we were at least looking for a real live rotting boxcar, you didn’t tell me that there was absolutely nothing here anymore! Unbelievable!

The old man seemed to be very happy while wandering around the area next to the railroad tracks that no one else was following him around to look at anymore.

Young Woman:         I have always had the impression that he thought his father was a real asshole, so why was it so important that he came here?

Older Woman:           I don’t really think it has anything to do with how he feels about his father, it is just sentimental feelings about growing up, sometimes you don’t remember how bad things were and you just want to see the things you remember from your childhood. It is kind of like when Dave and I went to Wapato to visit where I lived from when my mother died when I was six until I got married at 19 and moved back to Oregon where I was born. I just wanted to see the places I had memories from when I was a kid, whether they were good memories or bad ones. That is the same thing that Dave is doing.

Young Woman:         Well it is too late to change having come here but I am never going to let him forget he took me to the middle of nowhere to see nothing!

Fade Out

Scene II

The young man walked down the path that had formed along next to the river through the trees and as he walked along he kicked the little rocks that had rolled onto the trail back towards the steep rock wall that lined the side of the trail on the opposite side from the river. The river meandered its way through a fairly dense forest on its eventual way out to the ocean but it had a long way to go before it would arrive there.

All of a sudden he stopped and looked around, he heard sounds coming from farther on up the trail, it was the sound of someone walking on it and he quietly slipped behind a tree growing on the bank of the river and he waited to see who was approaching. The sound of the other person’s feet walking on the dirt trail was very faint as if whoever was on the trail was not very heavy. As he peered through the brush from where he was standing the young girl he had been looking for appeared where the trail ahead rounded the corner and he quietly stayed hidden behind the tree and waited for her to walk by where he was hiding. It was a fairly large tree with a cluster of bushes growing at the base of it so that he was completely hidden from the girl that was approaching.

After the girl walked by where the young man was hiding he picked up a large rock from the ground by the river and slipped up behind her and hit her over the head with the rock. She immediately fell face forward on the trail and he didn’t stay to check and see what the condition of the girl was he just took off frantically running away from the scene of the crime and crossed the shallow river up ahead a little ways and one of his shoes got caught in between some rocks in the river and when his foot slipped out of the shoe he just kept on running as fast as he could to get away from the scene of the crime.

Just as the young man disappears from view we see the shadow of a man across the path where the girl is lying on the ground and then the scene fades out.

Scene III

FADE IN

A brown railroad car sits in the background of the scene we are watching. A young boy of about 5 years old is playing with a midsized black and brown dog and a ball in front of the railroad car in what sort of appears to be a yard, of sorts. The dog looks like it might have some German Shepard in it as well as a smaller breed. The boy is laughing and having a great time playing with the dog.

We pan around on the woods surrounding the boxcar and zoom in on a rock lined area than looks like it might be a garden.

We pan out and see a train approaching this site and as the train coming down the tracks it slows down and a smallish man about 35 years old jumps off of the train and walks towards where the young boy is playing with the dog.

Man:                           What the hell is that dog doing here?

Boy:                            He is the dog that I found last week.

Man:                           We can’t afford to have a dog for you to play with.

Boy:                            He eats the leftover food that we don’t eat. He doesn’t cost us any money.

Man:                           Those leftovers are our leftovers, the dog can’t have them. Do you understand that David?

Boy:                            But it was food that mom was throwing away.

Man:                           We don’t throw any food away here. Lillian, where the hell are you? Did you tell this boy that he could feed this dog our food?

Lillian:                        (She appears from somewhere outside of the house, she is a simple looking woman and talks as is appropriate to how she appears to be) It was food that was going bad. I told David he could give it to the dog.

Man:                           Why are you throwing any food away you stupid woman? David can eat that food. You shouldn’t ever let him give it to a dog. What the hell is wrong with you?

Lillian:                        I’m sorry. I thought it was bad.

Man:                           You are an idiot. Don’t ever feed our food to a dog! Feed it to David.

Lillian:                        I won’t ever give him food for the dog again.

Man:                           You’re damned right you won’t! I am going to take that dog out and shoot it right now.

David:                         Please Dad, don’t kill the dog. He can eat the scraps off of the deer you bring home.

Man:                           Those are our scraps and no dog is going to get them. Go back in the house.

David and Lillian go back in the house as is commanded of them and then they hear the sound of the gun and a yelp from the dog and then they hear nothing.

Fade out

Fade in to a heavily wooded path running along a river.

Scene IV

A young man walks down the path that had formed along next to the river through the trees many years ago and as he walks along he kicks the little rocks that have rolled onto the trail back towards the steep rock wall that line the sides of the trail on the opposite side from the river. The river meanders its way through a fairly dense forest on its eventual way out to the ocean but it has a long way to go before it will arrive there.

All of a sudden the young man stops and he looks around. He hears sounds coming from farther up along up the trail, they are the sounds of someone walking along the trail and he quietly slips behind a tree growing on the bank of the river and he waits to see who is approaching. The sound of the other person’s feet walking on the dirt trail is a very faint sound, as if whoever is on the trail is not very heavy. As he peers through the brush from where he is standing the young girl he has been looking for appears where the trail ahead rounds the corner and he quietly stays hidden behind the tree and waits for her to walk by where he is hiding. It is a fairly large tree with a cluster of bushes growing at the base of it so that he is completely hidden from the girl that is approaching.

After the girl walks by where the young man is hiding he picks up a large rock from the ground by the river and slips up behind her and hits her over the head with the rock. She immediately falls face forward on the trail and he doesn’t stay to check and see what the condition of the girl is, he just takes off frantically running away from the scene of the crime. He crosses the shallow river up ahead a little ways and one of his shoes gets caught in between some rocks in the river and when his foot slips out of the shoe he just keeps on running as fast as he can to get away from the scene of the crime.

Just as the young man disappears from view we see the shadow of a man cross the path where the girl is lying on the ground.

Fade Out

Scene V

Fade in

We are now looking at a jury in a trial for the murder of the 16 year old mentally challenged girl.

The prosecutor is giving testimony in evidence against the 16 year old boy that is charged with the murder. He is also mentally challenged but that is never brought into light.

The boy is convicted of the murder and sentenced to 10 years in Jail. The sentence was light due to his being only 16 years old.

Fade Out

Scene VI

Fade In

The now 26 year old man is released from prison, the year in 1964. He returns to his home town of Cottage Grove and meets a young woman that he falls in love with and and marries a couple of years later. They eventually have two children together, first a boy and then a girl.

This man who spent 10 years in prison for a crime that no one knows whether or not he committed, and one that no one will know that he did or did not commit, was released from prison at the age of 26 and married a woman he met not long after he was released from prison. They married and had two children, a boy and a girl, and they stayed together until he died from complications from having Parkinson’s disease at the age of 76.

The following is “the rest of the story”!

Unbeknownst to the young man there was someone else observing what had occurred from another hiding place behind another tree. The significance of this would not be known to anyone for many years or the fact that it even happened as would be thirty years before anyone knew there had been an eye witness to this crime or what part the eye witness played but it is only one of the many extenuating circumstances of this particularly heinous crime.

The young man ran home as fast as he could and never stopped to look back. When he got home he realized he had lost one of his shoes so he took the other one off and took it out to the trash pile outside the old house that he lived in with his mother, father and four of his five brothers and tried to bury it under the trash that was waiting there to be burned. His oldest brother, David, had joined the navy when he had turned 18 five years before so as to escape the depressing family that they lived with and after he spent. Their father was a loveless cruel man who had never given his sons any help mentally or physically for all of their lives and their mother had been brain damaged at birth and had the mental capacity of a 13 year old child and if they hadn’t lived in a very small town with no real parental guidance their mother would never have been allowed to get married and have children given her extreme metal disabilities. Their father was of a little below average intelligence and he had only married Lillian for two reasons, one was to have sex and the other one was to have someone who would be willing to wait on him and do everything he asked her to do like she ended up doing when he married her. He wasn’t looking for any kind of intellectual relationship so the fact that his wife had such limited mental capabilities wasn’t a problem for him, it only was for the children who needed at least one parent who would be there for them since it wasn’t a role their father aspired to, his only need for his sons is that they do all of the physical labor that needed to be done around the house and yard.  It was the beginning of another dysfunctional family just like the one both Harley and Lillian had come from.

Besides Harley being a selfish, loveless man he was also cruel to his sons and even though they were dirt poor and lived in a box car ­alongside the railroad they lived off of the venison their dad would bring home from work that got hit by the train that he worked on. Since the train ran right past the boxcar that they were allowed to live in for free since it was one that the railroad no longer had any use for and Harley worked for them and the train would stop and pick him up for work every day and drop him off on its way back to the town it operated out of that was about twenty miles before the side of the tracks that the boxcar was located on. David was the oldest child and there was one daughter born during the six years of living in a boxcar and she died when she was three. The rest of the kids weren’t born until Harley had managed to make enough money to move into a small house located in the town that the train operated out of. David would later tell his wife and kids many years later that a dog had shown up at the boxcar and after he had been feeding it some of the venison and playing with it for several months it had become his best friend since he wasn’t in school yet and he had no friends to play with because the boxcar they lived in was twenty miles away from the nearest house and they had no car to go anywhere in. Just before Harley moved Lillian and David into the house he bought in town he took David’s dog out to the woods and shot it telling David they couldn’t afford to feed it. David never forgot that and after he turned 18 and joined the Navy he had very little contact with his cruel father, he would go visit his mother and bring her to stay with his wife and kids for a night when he wanted to see her, even though she wasn’t a very good mother he recognized it wasn’t her fault that she had been born brain damaged. She had extremely irrational phobias, she was convinced that cats were plotting against her and anytime she went and visited her children after they moved away she would freak out when the cats that were pets would come in the room, she insisted they were plotting against her.

They were very poor and after they moved to the small town of Glendale they had five more children, four boys and one more girl that died at birth. Elmer was born when David was seven and he was bordering on being mentally retarded, not the extreme mental deficiency his mother had but not able to deal very well with school and other children who would make fun of him. Two years after Elmer a third son, Clayton was born, a year later Cliff was born. After Cliff was born the family moved to a little larger town about thirty miles north called Gold Hill, it was where the last son, Kenneth, was born three years later. Kenneth would turn out to be the most popular, and the least affected by his dysfunctional parents of the five boys and he did the best in school. David went to high school in Gold Hill and then left to join the Navy when his baby brother was only five years old. Right after David had joined the navy Harley moved the family to a town that was quite a bit bigger than any town they had lived in before though it would still be considered a small town but in comparison to the previous towns it was very large. Since David left home at 18 and joined the Navy to make a better life for himself than he saw himself ever being able to have if he stayed in the small towns where he grew up and didn’t see any opportunity for him to make a living as he sure didn’t want to work for the railroad like his father.

Elmer had trouble keeping up with the class in school, they didn’t have any kind of special education in the small town for a child with special needs and he had just turned 16 and was made fun of much of the time. He did find a friend in school though, the friend was a girl that also was mentally handicapped like Elmer was and they became friends. She was talked into having sex with the local boys and doing what the boys wanted made her get more attention so she was eager to please them. Elmer also started to explore having sex with her. Then the girl turned up pregnant and the kids in the class took advantage of his lesser intelligence and started to incessantly tease him about getting the girl pregnant and he didn’t understand that she could have been pregnant by any one of the other boys she was having sex with so he got really scared and freaked about his being accused of getting the girl pregnant.  The only way he knew how to solve the problem was the way he attempted to do with a rock.

All of the kids knew she was pregnant and when she was found dead the police went to visit Elmer and they had the one shoe that was found near her body to tie him to the murder and they found the other shoe where Elmer had failed to hide it very well. He was arrested and was put on trial and sentenced to ten years in jail. There were rumors that Harley had also had sex with the girl as well as the girls own uncle, but the police had a good suspect who couldn’t defend himself and they never questioned anyone else in the crime. There are those in his family that still wonder to this day if maybe Harley followed Elmer and finished killing her after Elmer had hit her with a rock, as he only remembered hitting her once and she was hit many more times than that but with Elmer being unable to defend himself and the police not bothering to follow any other leads the case will never be changed. Elmer led a very low key and uneventful life after being released from prison, he found a woman that he married and they had a daughter and never got in trouble and he died at the age of 76. Harley and Lillian separated not long after that and she became a live in housekeeper for an older handicapped man. Elmer stayed close to his mother and none of the boys saw their father very often and Harley died at the age of 84 and if there was another truth in this story it died with those who were there. David is my stepfather.

Beyond Normal: The Next Door Neighbor

I have had many things happen in my life that I consider beyond normal, and by beyond normal I mean things that don’t happen to hardly anyone ever! I seem to have had more than the average amount of these types incidents happen around me, or to me or my friends. I have had a pretty full and sometimes colorful life but I grew up a fairly well-grounded child even though I came from a household that was pretty dysfunctional in many ways so there wasn’t many good reasons for anyone in it to be well grounded but I did manage to maintain my base in reality as well or better than most anyone I know. The story I am going to tell here is about one of the strangest events in my life and I think it would qualify as really a strange event in anyone’s life.  I will not bore you with all the little details of my life that were dysfunctional as they don’t play a part in this bizarre story as it had nothing to do with my dysfunctional family. This one incident is basically sometimes you are just at the wrong place at the wrong time. I didn’t have anything to do with the way this strange and dangerous set of events, they just happened. In 1984 I had a boyfriend that I had been going out with for over three years and for most of our relationship I went over to his house in the evenings, because I lived with a roommate in a rented house and my boyfriend was buying the house he lived in so I guess he thought I should come to his house since he was buying his though in retrospect I realize it was because he was not willing to inconvenience himself by staying at my house when he saw himself in the superior position of buying his own house but it took me until after our relationship had ended to figure out his motivations, better late than never as “they” say. For the whole time I dated Greg he had a neighbor that lived across the street who he had become friends with, his name was Bill and Greg said that he had met him the year before I started dating him when he first moved into the house he was buying. I met Bill many times throughout the three years I dated Greg since he lived right across the street and Greg usually invited him over to his house when Greg had small parties. Bill also invited Greg and I over to his house occasionally when he had friends from the place he worked at come over for barbeques or other occasions. He never drank or did any drugs and he had basically admitted to me that he was an alcoholic which was why he didn’t drink and that made sense to me and I never questioned it. There were several times through the years when Greg and I were fighting he would come over and visit me the next day while I was still at Greg’s house after Greg had gone to work when he knew we were fighting and he was very understanding and helpful when I needed to talk about those things. There were a couple of times that Greg flew back east to where his family lived for a week and I stayed at his house to “baby sit” it that Bill would come over to visit with me in the evenings and I trusted him and thought of him as a good friend. He had been given key to Greg’s house so Greg could call him and have him check on it when he and I were gone for the weekend and also to check on the place the time Greg and I went to Mexico for a couple of months. He had proved himself to be honest and trustworthy by all of the times I was around him for three years I knew him, both at Greg’s house and when we had been invited over to Bill’s house for the evening. All of Greg’s friends felt the same way about Bill as I did. During the summer of 1984 Bill started drinking, but he didn’t seem to be out of control so there didn’t seem to be any reason to be concerned. Then one evening when I was over at Greg’s house he got a phone call from Bill telling him that he had been arrested for threatening a co-worker’s girlfriend and he asked Greg to go over to his house, Greg also had a key to his house, and take care of his dog and cat until he got out of jail. We just assumed that it was a minor issue and we took care of his dog and cat until he was released from jail the next day. A day later I was over at another friend and his wife’s house and they knew Bill because he used to work with one of them a few years earlier and they told me they heard that the reason Bill had been arrested was that Bill had threatened a co-workers girlfriend with a knife because she was taking the ex-boyfriend, who worked with Bill, to court to sue him for child support for her child she had just had. Bill had been told by his friend he worked with that the gal was lying and it was not his child and she was just trying to ruin his marriage because he had spurned her attentions. They also told me one of the main reasons they heard Bill was arrested was because he had an arrest record for raping someone several years ago and was on the official sex offender’s registry and the reason he was an ex-alcoholic is that it was a condition for his not being in jail. When I heard that my first thought was I don’t want to have anything to do with someone who had raped someone. I told this to Greg and he told me I was overreacting. I listened to the reasons he gave me for not believing that Bill was dangerous and that I was being paranoid so I went against my first reaction and continued being a friend to Bill when I was visiting Greg. About a month later he was set to go to trial for the crime of attacking the co-worker’s girlfriend and he expected to lose he said because it was his word against hers and he had a record. He said he gave his dog and cat to a friend, and he rented his house out to two friends of Greg’s so they would take care of it while he served however much time he thought he would be sentenced to and Greg let Bill rent his spare room from him while he was awaiting the court date. Two nights before the court date Bill called me up and asked if I would go out to dinner with him, sort of a last dinner before he went to jail and he wanted to buy me a nice dinner at the place of my choice for being such a good friend. Well I didn’t feel right in refusing him so I suggested we go to a place I really liked and he asked if I could come over and pick him up for dinner at Greg’s house where he was staying. I went over there and Greg wasn’t home from work yet, it was summertime and he frequently had to work late, so I picked Bill up and we went to a very nice restaurant that I really like next to a river and had a very good dinner. After dinner Bill asked if we could drive to a local park that has a nice view of the city on our way home. I said yes and we went there and he told me he was very scared of going to jail while we were parked there looking at the stars. I sympathized with him and we had a pleasant conversation. He also told me that he was worried about his dog and cat and I told him that if he did get sentenced to jail time I would find a good home for them. I drove us both back to my boyfriend’s house and dropped him off and went home. The evening was his last evening before he was to go to court and at the house he owned and had rented to the couple that were friends of Greg’s they rented a Pay Per View Fight at that house and Greg, Bill and Larry and Debbie (the couple that had rented Bill’s house) had small party which I didn’t attend because I was not a big fight fan and I had to go to work at 6 am the next morning. The next day I was called at work at 4 pm just before I went home by Greg and he asked me to come by as soon as I got off work. He sounded pretty serious so I didn’t ask any questions I just went over to Greg’s house. When I walked in Greg was sitting there with Larry and Debbie, the ones who had rented Bill’s house. Greg hugged me and said “Bill killed himself”. I immediately started crying and didn’t ask any questions, I suppose I just assumed he committed suicide when faced with going to jail. Then after I calmed down I asked Greg what happened. He told me that during the “fight” party at Bill’s house across the street Bill had left the house saying he needed to go get something from over at Greg’s house where he was staying. Not very much after that Greg said the police came to Bill’s house and knocked on the door and when he answered the door they asked where Bill was. Greg told them that Bill was across the street at his house, they asked him if it was alright if they went over there to talk to him. Larry told them he would go over and get Bill and bring him over to his own house so they let him walk over there. Larry then said as soon as he walked in the door Bill pulled a gun on him and told him to leave and Larry left. When Larry went back into “Bill’s” house, the one that he was renting that the police were at and told that to the police they told everyone to stay where they were and went across the street to Greg’s house. Apparently as soon as the police walked up and knocked on the door they heard the sound of a gun being cocked and backed off. They went back over to Bill’s house where Greg, Larry and Debbie were and told them what had just occurred. They then went outside to discuss the next course of action. For some very stupid reason Greg got it in his head that he needed to save Bill and went over to his house while the police weren’t watching him and entered his house. He told me that Bill then held the gun he had to his head and told Greg if he got any closer he would shoot himself. So for the next three hours, it was about 3 in the morning by this time, Greg tried to talk Bill into giving himself up to no avail. So he then suggested at 6 or so in the morning that they drive over to the local drug treatment facility that Bill had been treated at many years earlier so he could talk to the counselor’s there. So apparently Bill said yes and Greg drove his car there with Bill sitting in the passenger seat with a gun to his head for the entire 20 minute drive. When Greg drove into the parking lot for the place he could see SWAT team guys hiding around the side of the building. After he parked his car he told Bill they needed to get out of the car and he then attempted to wrestle the gun out of Bill’s hands which only ended in a shot being fired into the floor of his car before Bill wrestled his hands free and told Greg to get out of the car. Greg did as he was told as he found out Bill was a lot stronger than he was. Greg then walked over to the SWAT team guys to tell them not to shoot Bill and they promptly grabbed him and handcuffed him to a pole at the side of the building so he couldn’t put himself in danger anymore. They then walked to Greg’s car where Bill was sitting next to it with the gun to his head to try and negotiate. As soon as one of the men got near Bill he pulled the trigger and shot himself dead. I was in sort of a state of shock when I heard these events told to me. We all were. We turned on the local news at 11:00 and the whole suicide was caught in its “entire splendor” by the local news media. Greg, Larry, Debbie and I were really depressed by the whole affair and thought the police had pushed Bill to suicide. The next day we all found out that the reason the police had come to talk to Bill the night before he was to appear in court was because two nights before, the night before I went out to dinner with him, he was a suspect in an incident where a local prostitute had been picked up by a guy driving a blue 1969 Camaro with a fuzzy dashboard (the exact description of Bill’s car which would explain why he wanted me to drive when I went over to Greg’s house to go out to dinner with him) and she had been tied to a tree and her mouth taped with duct tape before she was raped by the man. Since he knew he had done this crime he was ready for the police to come visiting on the night they did. After all of the facts came out I didn’t feel sorry for Bill, but I felt I was either extremely lucky, or had a guardian of a higher power, or that Bill really respected me for all the good things he told me I had always done for him and everyone else but I have got to say that even if I am a great person I never want to count on that saving my life ever again. I really feel that there for the grace of “me being a good person” I might not be here today and I never ever want to count on that even if it may have been the only reason Bill did not harm me. From there on out I always go with my “gut” feeling no matter what anyone else tells me. The eeriest thing about this event was after Bill had killed himself I was cleaning out the bedroom he had been staying in at Greg’s house and underneath the mattress I found a handwritten list, which had on it “Lye, duct tape, garbage bags, shovel, ropes” and we never ever found the cat and dog that Bill had told me he was worried about their well-being, he may have given them away but I don’t know who it would have been to. Kind of creepy and kind of a horror story!