Solving a Murder
What I heard....
Bumps came into Jumpy's bar and before he ordered the first shot, asked; "Where the girls?"
Jumpy didn't answer. He served the drink and went back to what he'd been doing. He had what one could call a slow brain. It was the next day he noticed the whores weren't standing around his bar. Whores had always stood around the bar. Now there wasn't a single one.
He asked Hortense, who clearned th bar, and she went on and on and on about it, until he told her to shut up or she was fired. But everyone heard her talking about females with no morals, and everyon suddenly noticed that there weren't any females with no morals anywhere around Jumpy's bar.
This is why when the Police found the first body, somewhere off Bournmouth beach, everyone decided it must be one of the whores who worked John's Lane although the body was pretty much decomposed.
What I Have Seen
My office was in an older building
with a back gate that opened onto
We parked our cars behind the office,
meaning we'd drive on John's Lane
make a racket and eventually Slugs
would open the Gate.
Slugs lived on the premises.
Usually this kind of a job is given to old men. But Slugs wasn't forty. It always struck
me strange that a youngish guy would be the caretaker and live in a back room.
I always found him kind of peculair.
Anything he was asked to do instead of moving immediately, he'd take his time.
If he was washing his arms, it would be at least two minutes before he moved.
I once asked Chantel, a secretary, if she'd noticed this. Oddly she had.
"The way he caresses his arms when he washes them, it creeps me out."
Big Suze, who was the cleaner and lived about four blocks away and knew
everything, had told someone once that Slugs didn't have a girlfriend,
he bought whores.
It was stange to see a guy, who didn't look that bad, who had to pay for sex.
So you see, when the rumour about the Jumpy girls being killed began racing
on the Lane and Big Suze carried it into the office, I made the link.
The Body Count Continues
The police found another body about a mile from the first. Decomposed, unindentified.
As everyone was now assuming she had been a Jumpy girl they marched
to the morgue,(which was about eight blocks away), and Wisker was sure
that it was Zinni.
Zinni was one of the females who could be seen, if anyone had looked, lurking
around the Lane. She was big and fat and loud and always dressed in the most
Considering the body was nude, and fairly unrecognisable no one could be sure
if that was Zinni. However, they decided it was and people came out of the
woodwork to admit their relationship, whether cousin or neice or uncle.
We didn't have much of a Forensic department, this wasn't CSI. Our
investigators wouldn't know DNA from GPS. They'd have to send for
someone, and would the expense be justifiable?
Hence, the cops decided; you want to call the corpse Zinni, go ahead.
When the third body was found, about six miles from the first, but along Glasspole
Highway, (which ran the same coast the others bodies had been found), it was
now front page news.
The luck came in that a real live Forensic guy who actually worked in Miami,
(Not Horatio Caine) offered to help.
This wasn't entirely altruistic.
He and his wife were having a second honeymoon at a pricey hotel, and if the
government would pick up the tab and give him an extension on his VISA, he'd
be happy to assist.
So as it was Front Page, as the guy was from 'foreign', the government scraped
some pennies together and gave him the go ahead.
Although I was alert, there was no change in Slugs.
In the mornings I'd beep the usual 60 seconds. Although he might be twenty feet
from the gate it would take him at least a minute before he opened it with his attitude.
Outside of being able to respond with 'morning' to "Good Morning", he didn't have
much of a vocabulary.
His two minute arm wash/caress always tended to fascinate me.
I looked for 'signs' but he as he was, a must avoid.
The Forensic guy decided that due to the rain bodies which had been buried off
the Highway had washed out to sea. But as there wasn't much tide in the Harbour
they didn't go very far.
Mr. CSI drove along the Highway followed by a TV team. He indicated many places
where a car could pull off the road onto the grassy banks, stop, bury a body
behind the bushes in the soft sand, and drive away, unseen.
There was one problem; Slugs didn't own a car. He had a bicycle.
Considering where the office was and where the bodies were found was between
two and eight miles away, and John's Lane emptied in East Queen Avenue, which
was a main thoroughfare, transportation by bicycle wasn't likely..
I would have written Slugs off, until I learned that he used to drive a cab.
Meanwhile, four more bodies were dug up in the same area, and one of them
had purple hair. And everyone on John's Lane knew that Fara, one of Jumpy's
girls, had dyed her hair purple.
What I Did
I drove out of the office
and to a police station
some distance away.
I spoke to an officer,
told him about Slugs.
It wasn't his area,
it wasn't his case,
and he told me which
Police Station to go to
who to call, blah blah.
I wasn't going to do anything else.
Eventually, I knew, he'd tell someone, who'd tell someone else.
Eventually someone with a functioning brain would check it out.
It took only a week for a few undercover cops to reach the office.
They went around to the back, and I pretended I didn't see them.
I kept working and then everyone in the building began erupting
for the cops had found female clothing in Slug's room.
And the keys to a car.
I stayed blank so that when they took Slugs away, my face was a picture of confusion.
I didn't get any credit for 'solving' the case.
A police officer who no doubt heard my supposition from another police officer,
took credit. The 'hero' claimed to have 'information' and did 'investigations' and
collected 'evidence' and located a 'suspect'.
It really wasn't rocket science.
Slugs had lived so quietly that most people didn't notice him. That he'd kept
the keys to a taxi which was parked at the all night gas station nearby was
But that he'd kept items of clothing from his victims was a bit more than that.
The owner of the building, the guy who'd given Slugs the job, was actually his father.
Slugs was the product of a quickie between Mr. --- and a whore on John's Lane.
The father had 'tried' with Slugs, but he wasn't intellectually capable of going
beyond High School. Slugs didn't have the skill nor ability to do more than be a handyman/caretaker.
Everyone on the Lane had a 'Slug' story. Everyone now claimed to have 'known'
it had to be him.
After a few days, the excitement settled down. An old man they called Browns took
The difference between Slugs and Brown, among other things, was that the latter opened
the Gate within 20 seconds of the beep and didn't wash his arms for two minutes.