Guilty Until Proven Innocent

This story was written as an entry into a short story contest. It lets you know where I’m starting from. read through Wattpad with the link below or scroll for the full story.

Guilty Until Proven Innocent

Five Days Before Trial
Catching a serial killer usually makes a small town detective’s career rise. When we caught our one-and-only nut job, my partner and I both lost too much and gained nothing.
My name is Edwin Janos, but most call me Eddie. A couple a weeks ago, my partner-Landyn Waite- and I were sitting at our desks in Falls County Station. We were reading over police reports. We’re from a small town of about 5,000 souls unless plus a few furry ones. In other words, there’s not much detecting to do here in Falls, Virginia.
There was an update on a serial killer who’d been on the loose for over a year. The FBI had finally figured out the pattern to the times. They’d known after about a month and a half what the pattern for the locations was, even if I didn’t understand it.
This guy was a serious wack job. He didn’t have a type but he sure loved to torture them. The details are enough to gag a maggot, so I’ll spare you.
It was always difficult to ID the vics though. They were often cut real bad. With bruising surrounding each cut, figuring out the weapon had been a real pain in the ass. No one had figured that one out even as Landyn and I were about to bag this creep.
Two Weeks Before, 3 PM
“I told you it was something simple, Eddie”
“Yeah, a two-minute difference between every second victim. Took a year to figure that out when they figured out his crazy geographic pattern in a matter of days. Some experts!”
“Looks like they think creep is going to hit nearby, man”
“How close?”
“In town, from what I can figure. They give three GPS coordinates, and when I punch them into my phone I get two here in town and one up Richmond way.”
“Well, shit. I’m surprised we don’t have Feebs all over!”
“This asshole usually doesn’t hit until sunset”
“It takes those guys two weeks to wipe their own asses, man. No way they could set up surveillance of two sites in less than a day. You think they contacted the boss?”
“Naw, we’da heard about it if they had.”
“Reckon they’re focused on Richmond then.”
“He’s not hit any cities, though. Ya think they’ve missed that detail?”
“It’s as obvious as a blinking neon sign.”
“Do we patrol the two locations in town?”
“Somebody’s got to do it. This punk’s gotten away with murder for a year. If we have a chance in hell of stopping him, we have to take it. You, me, Jeffries and Daniels should be able to cover it.”
“We’d better tell the boss.”
“It’s your turn to take her news that’ll make her cuss.”
“Damn! I was hoping you’d forgot again”
7:30 PM
Landyn and I were sitting in our beat up surveillance car, trying not to look like cops. The sun setting to our left, the GPS coordinates to our right. We’re listening hard, yet trying to look like two guys just hanging out. We’ve got our strong-enough-to-kick-ass coffee and some jerky to keep us occupied.
This asshole hit right at sunset every time so far, but everyone runs late for work once in a while….
A scream echoes from the alley two blocks west of us.
“Dammit” I shout, “You head towards the back entrance to the alley, I’m heading to the front”
We run like the devil is giving chase. I get to the alley and there’s an old man standing over a woman in a puddle of blood.
“Police! Step away from that woman!”
He just looks at me with soulless eyes. “You go back to your donut shop, cop. I’m not finished here.”
I point my sidearm at him. “Step away from her. This is your last warning, sir.”
I see Landyn approaching like a ninja from the other side as the old man kicks out towards the woman on the ground.
I hear several shots ring out and the old man hits the ground. Landyn checks on the man as I go to check on the woman. I can just make out her pulse. As I reach for my cell to call for an ambulance, I hear a sickening, squishing sound.
I turn around. Landyn is lying on the ground, his head smashed in on one side. I start to run to him when the old man moves. I freeze for a moment as the old man pulls out a knife from the end of his work boot.
“You’re all alike. Inept. Foolish. Careless. Your partner’s dead and so are you.”
Then I feel the pistol in my hand. I raise it and fire until it’s empty. The old man is lying there with a hole where his face used to be.
I check on Landyn. He still has a steady heartbeat. The woman, however, isn’t so lucky.
I call for the ambulance, then I call my boss.
45 Minutes Later
“I can’t believe this frail old man is a goddamned cold-hearted serial killer with over 100 victims!” My boss is livid as she surveys the scene. “What the fuck happened here, Janos?”
I tell her what I remember, more or less, like I just told you
“And that’s your official story?” I could tell she didn’t believe a word.
“Yeah, that’s my official fucking story.”
Five Days Before Trial
Landyn lost many of his memories. Without them or cameras in the area, I’m fucked.
Charged with double homicide, I’m behind bars.
I’ve lost everything I care about.
My job.
My wife took the kids and left me.
Now I’m stuck pulling in favors and trying to work a system I know is against me, even though I am actually innocent!
The worst part? That piece of shit gets off looking like an innocent victim! A victim of a killer cop, no less.

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