2400 Martin Luther King Boulevard

For two weeks, the detective had worked on the Eric Boyd case. Learning that on the night of his murder he was picking up money from a stable of young street dealers who sold his drugs along Fairfield Avenue. The drugs were one motive, but the detective couldn’t discount a straight up robbery. Boyd often carried a shit load of money on him. He was a cash-cow target.

The detective was doing his job of solving crimes. Eric Boyd wasn’t the pillar of society, but he had to have a voice. After all he couldn’t speak for himself. The squad sergeant couldn’t understand why the detective took the case to heart. In fact, he took all murder cases to heart and his solve rate was very high.

“You’re a fucking riot, trying to solve this case,” said the squad sergeant. “One drug dealer killing another. Let them wash each other away. It’ll save the tax payers a lot of money.”

“Still don’t make it right,” replied the detective as he walked out of the office and into his investigation at full speed.

He was a good detective and had a very big heart. He wanted closure for everyone who lost someone to murder. No matter the walk of life, everyone needed closure.

He solved the first murder of the year for his squad. It was a vicious stabbing on the Westside of Wentfield Park. There was no sign that the case was going to be solved easily, but he did it. His workload remained a sore point with his colleagues, but they could never accuse him of slumming. He was a very dedicated police officer and took any case with little complaint.

The only case he hadn’t solved before the Boyd case was Marlene Davison. She was an overweight, sad-faced, welfare lifer who finished up forty-eight years in a closet with a plastic bag over her head. Her shirt and bra hiked up to display a chest and stomach marked by several stab wounds. The murder weapon was a Craftsmen flat head screw driver.

The detective followed every thin lead, but it always came up empty. Now he had tacked on the Boyd case, but it didn’t matter. Eric Boyd and Marlene Davison needed a voice from the land of the living.

2400 Martin Luther King Boulevard shook the entire police squad. The crime scene was a back alley of an old Caldor Department store. The victim was slumped over the steering wheel with three gunshots to the side of his head. The first shot was clean and crisp, but the other two were sloppy as if the gunman fired them as the body was falling forward.

The squad sergeant leaned his head forward and for a moment he thought that he was just looking at the illusion of death and nothing more. He slowly pushed the victim’s head back and it appeared as if the victim was looking across the alley. His dark brown eyes were fixed wide, his lips parted and curled in a slight, vague frown. His fingers were still gripping the steering wheel as if he was trying to avoid running someone over. His coat and pants covered in blood as he completely bled out. There was brain matter on the passenger side window. The squad sergeant had first crack at the call, which came in from communications as nothing more specific than a body in the alley behind 2400 Martin Luther King Boulevard. He took the call because the other detectives were still assembling for the 8:40 roll call. But what he didn’t understand was why the squad’s hotshot didn’t take the call. He was always looking to help and solve crimes. He was always the first on the crime scene.

This day was no different. The squad sergeant lit a cigarette, located the medical examiner, then grabbed the keys from the ignition of the hotshot detective’s Ford Explorer.

A soft rain gently fell as the lifeless body of the detective was moved gently by the medical examiner’s team. They carried his body slowly through the trash filled alley and right into the meat wagon.

From the moment of the discovery, the detective was never regarded as a dead body, but a fallen friend instead. Among the detectives and patrol officers crowded at the crime scene, there was no easy banter, no coarse exchange of cop humor or scenarios being played out. There was simply respect for the fallen detective.

The squad sergeant stood mute in the light rain, sketching the crime scene in his head.

“2400 Martin Luther King Boulevard,” he whispered.

© 2012 Frank Atanacio

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Comments 24 comments

xstatic profile image

xstatic 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

Wow! I was surprised and taken aback at the transistion to 2400 Martin Luther King! This is a great oneFrank! (Again)


duffsmom profile image

duffsmom 4 years ago from Pacific Northwest, USA

Always gripping. Well done, Frank.


wingedcentaur profile image

wingedcentaur 4 years ago from That Great Primordial Smash UP of This and That Which Gave Rise To All Beings and All Things!

Wow! Voted up for awesome and interesting. Nice fake-out twist you put in there, Frank!

Well done.

Take care.


Highland Terrier profile image

Highland Terrier 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

Voted up.

Well done


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks so much for checking out my 2400.. X-man Duffsmom winged and highland im glad you guys enjoyed it :) Frank


Valleypoet 4 years ago

A sad ending , the detective will be a big loss to the police department...a great read Frank, with some great twists and turns. Thanks buddy:-))


LaThing profile image

LaThing 4 years ago from From a World Within, USA

Wow, what an incredible twist to the story at the end! You know I enjoy your shorts scripts, and I just realized what makes them so alive ...... It's the details, especially, mentioning the street names! There is something there that makes it very real. Great job, Frank! Thoroughly enjoyed it!

Voting up and everything.....


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton Author

Valleypoet thanks for stopping by and Lathing thank you for that sincere comment.. bless you both :)


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

What a twister, Frank. A sad one but one nonetheless. This one was close to home as the same thing that happened to the conscientious detective happened to yours truly one time. Course the outcomes were different. Life in the line of duty or just everyday living can be so tragic, or blessed.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton Author

Thanks Alastar for taking a drive-by on 2400 Martin Luther King Boulevard :)


Vincent Moore 4 years ago

You are the master of twisted in so many ways. I appreciate your work as not only a creative visual writer that hold his audience captors till the very last word, but also a poet with a stimulating mind. Yes indeed a most creative writer you are and brilliant in your craft. Bravo, I thoroughly enjoyed this one to Frank. Voted Up awesome and shared.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton Author

Thanks again Vincent for once again leaving footprints on my pages bless you man :)


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

You rank high among the great mystery writers....your 'short' stories contain more information and action than many full length books. The surprise ending is quite a surprise never expected in this one! God how I love reading your work!!!

Voted up, useful, awesome, interesting and shared! Everyone needs to read this, it is so very well done.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton Author

wow Til what a compliment.. of course you're being way too kind and I thank you for that :) Frank


Ruchira profile image

Ruchira 4 years ago from United States

So gripping and full of suspense, Frank.

You did it again :)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Ruch for stopping by :)


justateacher profile image

justateacher 4 years ago from Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Near Oz...

You are such a wonderful writer - I get caught up in your poems and forget that you do just as well - if not better - with your short stories.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks justateacher that was very nice of you to say :) bless you


epigramman profile image

epigramman 3 years ago

..you realized by using the 'F' word now - lol - you have unleashed the profane beast in the epi-man , Sir Frank.

I've been holding back on that word and trying to be a good boy and naughty at the same time - lol - but I realize detectives don't talk cute and it's in the context. Love your work as always - it's so black and white as in film noir and the films of the 40's and the 50's ....

Happy boxing day to you - one of my favorite writers - and when I read your work - I always want to pile up some 'bodies' lol in a piece of my own - in fact I think I will do that tonight - lol


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

lol funny thanks so much Epi.. bless you


Darksage profile image

Darksage 2 years ago from Philippines

Wow, this was made a long time ago and I only read it now, yet it amazed me. Another great job Mister Frank Atanacio, I am a big fan of your work and this short story shows it all. Amazing job!


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Darksage...:)


Feenmore 2 years ago

kind of freaked me out at the end, good for a very short story FM


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 15 months ago from Shelton Author

thanks Feen :)

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