Chapter 2

Chapter 2

A Chapter by Stu Edmond

Another miserable Friday morning greeted Andrew Mackay as he started his delivery round. He hated the 4am starts, it made for a very long day and he would much rather be back in his warm bed snuggled up to Kath. However, while there were bills to be paid and not enough coming in from his shifts as a mechanic at his brother-in-law’s garage so he had to make up the shortfall somehow. Kath was stuck at home with their youngest, Sophie.

Being nearly twelve weeks premature she had nearly not survived birth and meant she had needed to spend weeks in hospital in an incubator. This had been followed by months at home being constantly fed oxygen and not being able to mix with other children because her poor frail body was only just starting to take care of itself and yet she still seemed to be constantly ill.

So Kath had to quit her receptionist job at the doctor’s surgery to look after Sophie and suddenly ends didn’t meet. His father, a mechanic like him, had taught him the value of doing an honest day’s work and he had worked every day of his adult life rather than go cap in hand to the dole office. He thought that far too many people took the easy way out, claiming benefits for everything under the sun rather than do hard graft to get by.

            The other day Kath had told him about an old school friend of hers that was pregnant with some loser for the sixth time in order to get more money in her pension check. Apparently he was on disabilities for something or other and she had never spent more than three months without either being pregnant or giving birth. Kath said that together they were bringing in twice what he earned at the garage for doing sod all. How was that fair, he thought.

            He saw that as the main reason the country was going down the gurgler. The tree hugging bleeding hearts in the government had made it too easy to get money for nothing. Still cursing the government for dragging in out of bed on his miserable morning, he dropped the next load of papers on the doorstep of the newsagents.

Across the road he noticed a row of large recycling bins with a ridiculous paint job meant to represent cows. More tax-payers money wasted, he thought. Some out of work struggling artist probably got paid more to do that than he’d see in year.

As straightened he noticed a girl’s slender leg sticking out from behind one of the bins. He was not entirely surprised to find the girl here; she would not have been the first person he had found sleeping off a night of over indulgence. Andrew instantly thought of his own daughters, the eldest, Rebecca, at fifteen was on the verge of discovering boys and booze. He hoped that she would have more sense than to find herself here like that girl across the road.

He wondered if there was a father at home worrying about where she was and if she was ok. The previous night had been bitterly cold and the persistent drizzle had probably soaked her through. He made up his mind to check on the girl and started walking across the road.

As he got nearer he could tell something was seriously wrong. She lay propped up against the wall next to one of the bins, a leg bent at an awkward angle beneath her and there were cuts and scrapes coating her knees. He looked around behind the bin and swore loudly.

The girls face was a mass of bruises, one eye had completely swollen shut and she had blood everywhere on her shirt. Gingerly he reached down to check her pulse and swore again as he touched her cold and damp skin.

 

Detective Sergeant John Simmons swore loudly to himself as well when he arrived at the scene, though this was more in frustration than revulsion His partner Detective Constable Andrea Miller shot him an angry glance before stalking off towards the crime scene. Uniforms had already taped off the area around the girl’s body and Andrea almost ripped it in two as she pulled it over her head.

They had only been on duty for twenty minutes when the call came in about the discovery of a body. This was supposed to be the last day of their shift rotation and Simmons had been looking forward to two and a half full days of achieving nothing more than a two under par round of golf with Will Thomson, an old friend from his days at Hendon Police College and the best man at both of his weddings.

When they had gotten the call about the discovery of a body behind some rubbish bins he knew that was off. Now there would mountains of paperwork, grieving parents to notify, hopefully they would be able to tie someone to the crime and get a result, but he didn’t get his hopes up.

‘So what we got?’ Simmons asked to no-one and everyone as he passed under the crime scene tape. Andrea stood up from beside the body of a young teenage girl. There was a sadness and frustration in her eyes.

‘Young girl about sixteen or seventeen, she has been badly beaten around head and body. By the look of her outfit she might have been a street walker. According to the SOCO guys she’s been dead approximately three hours, which puts time of death at about four this morning.’

SOCO or Scene of Crime Officers had been called at the same time he had and Simmons was surprised they had managed to get here as quick as they did.

‘Any ID on her?’

 ‘Nothing, no hand bag or purse. Uniform are already doing a sweep of the area and have come up with nothing so far. She doesn’t match the description of any missing person reported over night, though it’s possible she hasn’t been missed yet.’

Simmons got a good look at the girls face and despite the massive injuries she had sustained he could still tell she would have been quite pretty. He shook his head sadly. ‘How could anyone have not missed her, she can’t be more than 15 or 16.’ He said bitterly more to himself to than anyone standing close by. He glanced at his partner ‘CCTV?’

‘I’ve got Uniform going through it now.’ Andrea replied, ‘SOCO reckon she wasn’t killed here.’

The constant drizzling rain would make finding the scene of the attack and recovering any useful forensic evidence difficult if not impossible, the only witness they had was the delivery driver who found the girls’ body and he would not be able to offer any information either as she had been dead for several hours by the time he found her. Unless they came up with something from the video tapes from last night or the pathologist produced a miracle they were going to have a hard time finding out what happened to the poor girl.

Back at his desk in Shoreditch Police Station Simmons painfully watched the final moments of the young girls’ life as she staggered along Broadway Market. CCTV had picked her up emerging from a side street onto the main road then walking down towards the park where she was found.

‘What do you think happened to her?’ Andrea asked over his shoulder.

‘Don’t really know but it looks like she got a bit of a kicking somewhere down that side street, ‘Simmons replied thickly. He did not like to admit it but seeing the girl staggering helplessly had gotten to him. ‘Uniform are going through the last few hours to see if they can pick her or her attacker up.’

Just as he finished a PC came over and dropped a disc in front of him. ‘You want to see this Sarge’

Once the disc was loaded and the video started scrolling, as he watched he could clearly see the young girl standing out the front of the nightclub. Several times she tried to step around the bouncers and get into the club, but each time they turned her away. A group of five men leave the club and one of them notices the girl, points to her while a second tall broad shouldered man with a bald head that shines brightly in the neon lights walks over to the girl, grabs her by the arm and drags her out of view of the camera. The screen went blank momentarily then the same view of the street that Simmons had been watching earlier starts playing. Several couples wander through the cameras field of view before the girl appeared being dragged along the tall man. They cross the road together before he drags her towards the side street that Simmons saw the girl staggering out of earlier.

He thanked the PC and gave SOCO a call to go over the area behind the row of shops of the main street, hoping that they might be able to find the scene of the attack and useful evidence to identify the girl and her attacker. Across the office he heard his partners’ phone ring and she answered quickly.

‘Sarge,’ Andrea called out. ‘The Pathologist has got something for us.’

 

Simmons and Andrea were greeted by the Home Office Pathologist as they arrived at the morgue. Located in the bowls of the local hospital, the morgue was an ancient place right out of a horror movie. Old cracked tiles lined the narrow corridors and fluorescent strip lights flickered on and off, the deathly silence accentuated the squeaking of doors that had not seen oil since the building was new. The sweet metallic aroma of blood and decaying flesh could never be disguised by the disinfectant and high powered air-conditioning system, it seeped into every pore and stayed with you for days. All in all it gave Simmons the willies.  

Dr Jillian O’Shea was a tall slender woman with silver blonde hair that was tucked up into a tight bun at the nape of her neck. She had the air of a no nonsense professional which Simmons found extremely appealing. A surreptitious glance at her ring finger revealed the absence of any obvious attachments.

After shaking hands the pathologist led them to a stainless steel examination table where the girls’ body was laid out. A large Y shaped scar ran from her stomach up to her chest before splitting and ending at her shoulders.

‘Well,’ Dr O’Shea began, ‘I’m sorry but I don’t really have much to tell you. Your poor girl was severely beaten around the head and abdomen.’

Simmons had a good look at the body on the slab. She seemed even smaller than she had that morning. After the blood and make up had been washed away and her hair brushed from her face, Simmons revised his assumption of the girls’ age. Now she only looked as old as his twelve year old niece Katy.

‘The head and body injuries were caused by repeated blows from a man’s fist and feet. If you look here,’ Dr O’Shea pointed to a large rounded bruise on the girls’ chest. ‘You can see the impression of his boot. From the size and shape I’d say he was at least a size 11 or 12’

He glanced across to his partner Andrea Miller. This was probably one of her first trips to the morgue and her pallor had taken on a slight green tinge and the poor girl was breathing deeply. Simmons did not want to say anything though. If Miller was going to be any use as a copper she would have to get used to days like this.

‘So what finished her off Doc?’ He asked.

‘Ultimately it was a subdural haematoma from an intracranial haemorrhage.’ The pathologist wiped a tired hand across her brow, ‘Though, she had masses of internal injuries several of which could have lead to her dying of internal bleeding. There were several cracked ribs one of which punctured a lung, a ruptured spleen and kidney. Whoever did wasn’t messing around; the poor girl never stood a chance.’

‘Is there anything you can tell me about who she was?’

‘Not really,’ she replied sadly, opened the file in her hand and continued, ‘She was young, probably only fourteen or fifteen. Heavy heroin use though that she only started recently, frequent sexual activity both vaginally and anally, though no semen was present to help provide an ID for any of her partners and she wasn’t raped by her killer. I did find however a sample of saliva on her shirt. The killer spat on her,’ the doctor paused and took a deep breath. ‘That should give us some DNA to match with when you find this guy. She had no distinguishing features apart from a small mole on her lower back. Oh and from her dental work I’d say she was eastern European.’

‘Great thanks Doc. If you find anything else give me a call anytime.’ Simmons shook her hand again and passed a card with his private mobile number scribbled on the back. Shock and surprise raced across the Doctors face as she grasped his meaning, then, almost as quickly she looked him over and squeezed his hand slightly.

‘I might just do that,’ she replied with just a hint of suggestion in her voice.

Outside in the fresh chilly air Simmons saw that Andrea was still very pale with a slightly haunted look about her. He remembered his first trip to the morgue as a trainee detective. The rotting corpse of a middle aged man had washed up on the banks of the Thames. An investment banker by trade, he had done some dodgy dealings with people who did not take too kindly to losing two million pounds and had ended up going for a swim in the river with lead weights for company. That day he had only just managed to reach the gents before losing his steak sandwich.

‘Where to now Sarge,’ Andrea asked.

‘Back to the nick to check on any MISPERS and then we can go clubbing’


© 2010 Stu Edmond


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Added on May 20, 2010
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Author

Stu Edmond
Stu Edmond

Northampton, United Kingdom



About
I discovered writing while searching for a new career after my business went down the gurgler. I was born in the UK and moved to Australia with my parents many years ago. I returned to the UK to find .. more..

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A Chapter by Stu Edmond


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A Chapter by Stu Edmond