Shifts In Low Tide
For Detective Nathan Chambers' shifts, there was a sixteen year old Puerto Rican rapper want to be who tells his grandmother he would never be taken alive, and at the end of the day those words became true. He was shot in a drive-by twenty two times and died dirty. He had heroin in his pocket with the intentions to sell.
There was a twenty three year old MBA college student from the University of New Haven who goes with a friend to buy some cocaine in the blighted section of Bridgeport, but instead was robbed and shot in the neck by a street dealer. He certainly received no school credit for that business transaction. His friend of course took the wheel of his friend's parent's BMW and drove his bloody, dying friend to Bridgeport Hospital and told the emergency room doctors that they were mugged and robed while looking for a friend's house.
Then there was an argument over a basketball game score at a local sports bar that just begun with bragging rights. It escalated to fists and bar room chairs until two bar backs and a waitress got their bones broken and a wimpy 45 year old man was sent into a life threatening coma.
There would be no forgetting Shelia Berry, a mother who stabbed her boyfriend to death, then tells her teenage daughter to take the blame, arguing that she would only be charged as a juvenile.
As his shifts wind down, he discovered a young boy's body in the Rooster River. He was a victim of a molestation then suffocated and his torso was tossed in the river. His body was mistaken for a dead dog by passersby.
Then the pastor of the nearby strip store church that was once a U-Haul rental place found shot in the head as he weighed and diluted heroin at his kitchen table, perhaps wanting to give sales a try. Chambers thought that he should have stuck to religion.
Oh and lets not forget the corners of Fairfield Avenue and Main Street, where one prostitute stabbed another because she offered a John the same services for half the price. That John became the key witness to that crime, a businessman from Westport. He fled the scene into the waiting arms of his wife and children at the first sign of blood. He was also surprised that Chambers called his house and told him that one of the whores left her handbag in the back seat of his car, and that he was her main witness.
The saddest incident during one of his shifts was a group of teenagers who robbed and beat to death a 77 year old black woman who came out of Price Rite and only took 2.17 off her dead body, leaving behind a quart of skim milk and two cans of cat food.
Nathan Chambers clocks out as he studies a file case folder on his desk. He knew that the sheer weight of drama occurring on his shifts were certainly going to wear him down even during low tide.
© 2015 Frank Atanacio
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