The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane - Part 12

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The Little Girl Who :uves Down The Lane - Part 12
By Barbara Lynn Terry

Chapter 1 - The town picnic resumes.

Sunday morning dawned early, for the people of the city of Pine Forest and of the county. Church was a very important part of Pine Forest life. The people were getting up, taking their showers or baths, and getting ready to go to mass. There are three churches in Pine Forest; the Catholic church, the Lutheran church, and the Episcopal church.

Services at each church lasted for only an hour. By nine o’clock services were over. The people of Pine Forest went home to change clothes, and go to River Brook Park for the last day of the Mrs. Mae Harkins Memorial Scholarship Fund town picnic.

The town and county of Pine Forest not only respected Mrs. Mae Harkins* in life, but honor her in death. This was a lady the town of Pine Forest will never forget. This is why the town council along with the votes from the townspeople, elected to have a memorial scholarship fund in Mrs. Mae Harkins name. This scholarship fund was for a deserving student in either sports or academics.

Pine Forest police officers Steve Hastings, his sister Janet, Greg Olsen and Tony Palmetti were already at River Brook Park making sure that all was safe for the people who came to the picnic. Along with these four officers, two rookies would be joining them; officers James Peabody and Dierks Pullman. Greg Olsen and Tony Palmetti were there by Steve’s request.

The park started filling up with the townspeople and those that lived in the county rural areas. Today was the last day of the first annual town picnic. Next week was the town square dance. Of course, there would also be line dancing as well.

By twelve o’clock noon, River Brook Park was filled with children and their parents. There were also single parent and their children. But, everybody in Pine Forest respected each other. After all, Pine Forest as a law abiding community and the residents of Pine Forest were proud of that.

Jay Simons and Francine McGuire helped out at the soft drink tent. John Shepard was cooking the brats and burgers. People were buying the food, but not in long lines. Jimmy and Kathy Shepard were playing horseshoes. Everybody was having fun.

Ever so often, Greg and Steve would check the bushes for any unwanted trouble makers. All they found were teens kissing. Steve told them it was not safe to be using the bushes as a makeout nest. He explained to them that trouble makers like to hide in bushes.

He said for them to find something else to do at the picnic. Steve and Greg finished checking the bushes and resumed watching the townspeople having fun.

Pine Forest police chief, Robert Edmonds, joined the festivities five minutes after Steve and Greg checked the last bush. Chief Edmonds was more than just an administrator, he was also a team player. He was appointed Chief of police by the mayor with the approval of the town council and the people of the town of Pine Forest.

Robert Edmonds is fifty four years old, his hair greying at the temples. He has a very cheery disposition, showing pearl white teeth. There was one thing Chief Edmonds did demand of his officers. He wanted to be called Bob instead of chief when they were by themselves. In public, like the picnic, they were to call him chief. They all understood this, and abided by it.

As Chief Edmonds was mingling, his brother, Captain James Edmonds drove up to the curb. He looked for Bob, and found him. He motioned for Bob to come to the sidewalk. Chief Edmonds went by his brother.

“What’s up, captain?”

“One of the five men Steve arrested yesterday, wants to talk to us. His attorney is with him, now.”

“Greg Olsen was in on that arrest, also, Jim.”

James Edmonds went to get Steve Hastings and Greg Olsen. He explained why they were neeeded at the station. Steve found Tony Palmetti and told him that he was in charge until he returned. Steve and Greg went to the station.

As Steve and Greg entered interrogation room three, they saw the big mouth of the five men from the silver Mercedes, and another man.

“Hello, I’m officer Steve Hastings and this is officer Greg Olsen. Let’s start with your names.”

“I’m Jim Bradford, attorney for the men you arrested yesterday. I was inforned by our client, here, that he wishes to speak to you about yesterday.”

:That’s fine, Mr. Bradford, but, let’s start with his name, age, date of birth and address in Detroit,” Steve demanded of the attorney.

“His name is James Wolcott, he is twenty seven years old. His date of birth is October 22, 1990. His address, however, must remain a secret to this department.”

“Then, Mr. Bradford, we can’t do business, except in court. Have a good day,” Steve told the attorney.

In the meantime, Greg Olsen was running the prisoner’s name and date of birth. If the prisoner was previously arreted, it would come back from the NCIC. Greg waited for the information.

Greg didn’t have long to wait. The information came back, quickly. The prisoner’s name is Stephen Wilson Hudson, aka, James M. Berry, aka, Winston Adams, aka, James Wolcott. Greg went back to the interrogation room.

“Steve look at this.” Greg showed Steve the NCIC “rap” sheet on their prisoner.

“Well, Mr. Bradford, it seems that you lied to us. Let me read what the NCIC came back with, on your client.” Steve read the information to Mr. Bradford.

“I’m sorry,” Mr. Bradford told Steve Hastings. “I didn’t know about this. Mr. Hudson, you’re on your own. I suggest that you get yourself another attorney.” Mr. Bradford put his papers in his brief case, and left.

“So,” Steve directed his attention to Stephen Hudson. “Would you like to tell us the truth as to why you were at our town picnic?”

“Go to hell, flatfoot.”

“I think we’re through here, Greg. Officer, take him back to his cell,” Steve told the attending officer.

Steve Hastings and Greg Olsen left the interrigation room. They went out to the parking lot to get their cars. They both went back to the picnic. When they got back to River Brook Park, Tony Palmetti saw Steve and asked him what happened at the station.

“The big mouth of the five men from the Mercedes tried, or I should say his attorney tried, to give us a false name for Mr. Big Mouth. That was until Greg ran Mr. Big Mouth’s information. It appears that big mouth’s real name is Stephen Wilson Hudson, twenty seven years old from Dearborn Heights, Michigan.”

“So, what did his attorney do then, Steve?” Tony asked.

“His attorney claimed he had been lied to, and packed his papers in his brief case. He told Mr. Hudson that he was on his own.”

“Well, at least we know one of their names,” Tony Palmetti replied.

The three officers went back to keeping watch over the picnic area. Steve Hastings watched as Jay Simons brought out more meat for the grill. Francine McGuire was serving soft drinks to thirsty picnic goers.

Jimmy Shepard, Tommy Jensen and Bob Evers were playing catch with the Frisbee. Tommy’s dog, Shep, ran back and forth, trying to catch it. Shep did catch the Frisbee a few times, which made the game a foursome instead of a trio.

Steve saw two girls playing tennis, and there were a few of the boys sitting on the bank fishing. As far as Steve could see, everybody was having fun. That was what the whole picnic was supposed to be about anyway.

Because of the time taken at the station with the prisoner, it was nearing the time when everyone would want their dinner. John Shepard was cooling the hot dogs and the brats, George Simons was making the hamburgers, and Ruth McGuire was passing out the salads. The salads were pasta, shrimp, chef and garden salads. These salads would go quickly.

People were starting to line up at the grills for their dinners. There would be people who would get a burger and a soft drink. That was Jay and Francine’s department. They were serving the soft drinks. There were sodas, iced tea and lemonade. Black Bear (headquartered in Oak Creek, Wisconsin), was a favorite brand of sodas in Pine Forest.

Steve Hastings liked the black cherry the best. As he stood there sipping on his soda, Steve kept an eagle eye vigil on the picnic grounds. His concern was the safety of the people who came to the picnic.

Steve was also thinking about how Mr. Bradford had tried to give a false name for his former client, Steve was also thinking that in order to save himself from a criminal charge, Mr. Bradford told Mr. Hudson that he was on his own. In the morning, Steve was going to run the fingerprints of the other four prisoners.

The laughter and noise of the picnic goers shook Steve out of his reverie. He glanced around and saw that everything was all right. Everybody was having fun.

It was going on six o’clock, and there were people heading for their cars. Some people had to get up early for work. As the picnic thinned out of people, Steve saw the same two boys still sitting on the river bank, still fishing.

The boys father called for them to get ready to leave. They grumbled a little, but did as they were told. They took their fishing rods and buckets to their father’s car. The two girls who were playing tennis were also gone. There were several people still at the picnic.

When it was eight o’clock, everyone that was still at the picnic, started for their cars. It was getting late for those that had to go to work. By eight thirty, the park was empty, save for the police officers.

Steve Hastings dismissed the other officers, except for Greg Olsen and Tony Palmetti. These three officers would make one final check, and get the tents and left overs to the community center. The first annual River Brook town picnic was over for another year. Next week would be the square dance at the community center.

Chapter 2 - Monday starts the work week.

The people of Pine Forest who worked the first shift, were already at work by six o’clock, Monday morning. Steve Hastings was already at the the station by five forty five. He took the fingerprints from the men in the Mercedes, and ran each set of prints through the NCIC (National Crime Information Center) in Washington, D.C., located in the FBI headquarters.

The information came back quickly. In addition to Stephen Wilson Hudson, there was Daniel Edward Cooke, Thomas James McDermott, James Robert Hall, and Anthony Stephens. The information contained, not only their names, but their dates of birth, descriptions and addresses. They were all from Dearborn Heights, Michigan.

Steve decided that it was time to get these men talking. He went to get Greg Olsen and Tony Palmetti. The prisoners would be split up between the three officers. Daniel Cooke and Thomas McDermott would be in interrogation one with Tony Palmetti; James Hall and Anthony Stephens would be with Greg Olsen in interrogation room three; and Steve would be between the two. Steve had a method to his madness.

Tony Palmetti asked Daniel Cooke why he and his friends wanted so much to “crash” a private picnic. Tony got the same answer Steve got from Stephen Hudson.

“You know that there are outstanding warrants on all five of you from Detroit,” Tony Palmetti told Daniel Cooke.

“Yeah, what for?” Daniel asked officer Palmetti.

“For one thing,” Tony answered his prisoner. “The five of you burglarized a home in Detroit, occupied by an elderly widow. The report said you stole money and jewelry. Is there a reason that you five did this?”

“Yeah, well whoever said we did that is a liar,” Daniel Cooke told Tony. Thomas McDermott echoed what Daniel said.

After twenty minutes, and not getting a straight answer from either prisoner, Steve told Tony and Greg to wrap it up. They would have their day in court. When all four were on the way back to their cells, Steve laid a bombshell in their laps.

“One other thing, fellas. I notified the Detroit police department that we have you on felony charges here. But, we can wait for you to be convicted here. Detroit has first dibs. Robbing an elderly widow, you five should be ashamed of yourselves.”

Tony, Greg and Steve left the prisoners in the interrogation rooms to wait to go back to their respective cell blocks. The five men were separated because in the morning didn’t want them concocting a rehearsed story to tell in court.

Even though the officers didn’t get what they wanted from the five men, the day was not a total loss. As they were on the way back to their squads, Steve stopped at the communications center, where the fax machines were located. He saw a fax from the Detroit police department.

The fax read that two officers from their department would be there the next day with extradition warrants. The fax said the officers would be there between eleven in the morning and two o’clock in the afternoon. Steve was in luck; Greg and Tony had not left the building. Steve showed them the fax.

“Well, there is one good thing,” Tony Palmetti was saying. “At least they will be out of our hair for a few years.”

“True, Tony,” Greg replied. “But, they will never ger out of hail. We got them after Detroit is finished with them.

“Very true,” Steve said to Greg and Tony. “When the Detroit officers get here tomorrow. We will have to have a judicial order, because these five will fight extradition. I am actually prepared for that. You guys go ahead. I’m going to talk to the district attorney.”

Tony and Greg went out to their squads, and left Steve to do what had to be done with the district attorney.

Chapter 3 - Steve lays the foundation for conviction.

Steve went to the district attorney’s office and spoke with William O’Connell, assistant dustrict attorney.

“Hey Bill, I need to talk to you about the five men we arrested Saturday.”

“Sure, Steve, what’s on your mind?”

“There are two Detroit police officers comng for the five men, Their names are Stephen Wilson Hudson, Thomas McDermott, Daniel Cooke, James Hall and Anthony Stephens. They are all from the Detroit area. They may fight extradition.”

“Don’t worry, Steve, we’ll make sure they are extradited.”

“One other thing, Bill, I want felony holds on each of the five, from our jurisdiction here. They threatened us with concealed firearms they were carrying.”

“So you want felony holds on each of them for carrying concealed weapons without a police permit and attempted murder charges for each of them.”

“Yes, Bill, I do. When they do their time in Michigan, I want them to do time here.”

“Not a problem, Steve. I will make sure they come back here.”

“Thanks, Bill. Well, I have to get on patrol. See you in court.”

“Take care, Steve. See you in court.”

Steve left William McConnell’s office and headed for his squad.

Once in his squaed, Steve radioed in that he was on patrol. The dispatcher acknowleged Steve’s transmission.

While driving through the town, Steve was wondering about the five men. He wondered if they were somehow connected to Jonah Wilson Carruthers. He needed to find out. Jonah was still waiting for his trial to begin. His court appointed attorney was stalling the court with various motions.

“463 returning to the jail to question a prisoner.”

“463 10-4.”

Steve had a plan to see if these five men were part of a racketeering ring. He thought that this is a huge possibility. If they were, he was going to seriously talk to the Detroit officers when they came to get the five prisoners. Steve arrived at the jail. Mr. Hudson was brought in a few minutes later.

“Hi Steve, may I call you Steve?”

“No! What do you want flatfoot?”

“Nothing much. I said I would delver a message to you. Jonah Carruthers said not to worry, he has everything under control.”

“Tell me, flatfoot, why would you give me such a message? I don’t even know anyone by that name.”

“Really, he seems to know you. I even, on purpose, asked him if he was talking about the Stephen Wilson Hudson from Saginaw. He said no, that you were from Dearborn Heights. So, one more time. Jonah says hi and not to worry.”

“Okay, so I know Jonah. Is that a crime?”

“I’m not sure yet. See you in court.”

Next chapter: The extradition hearing; Jonah Wilson Carruthers.

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