The next eighteen months of Gina’s life felt like a wild roller coaster ride with no brakes. First, it started with the trial. Mayor Goldberg got what he wanted and proceedings got underway the very next day. Sienna, Alex, and Captain Davis worked through the night building a solid defense by collecting evidence proving Gina’s stability. Being a master in the courtroom, Sienna wrote a near-perfect opening statement that seemed to steer the emotional jury toward their favor. Two jurors batted their glossy eyes after hearing the underhanded ongoings in her marriage.
After several days of argumentative statements and harsh questions thrown from both sides of the courtroom, Sienna’s plan worked to perfection. The judge overpowered the jury and ruled that Gina Vasquez had rooted emotional trauma and suppressed anger issues. She was sentenced to a psychiatric facility for three years, up for parole in eighteen months. The prosecutor was dumbfounded.
Furious that his legal team didn’t get the job done, the mayor fired them immediately after the trial. However, using any opening for political gain, the mayor got in front of the cameras and stated, “This trial was held as an example for anyone - whether it be a law-abiding citizen or a law enforcement officer - those who choose to defy my authority will suffer the same fate, if not worst. The city of New York is safe under my watch.”
Once the trial concluded, Sienna felt remorse for exposing Gina like an open wound. It was an extremely difficult decision to make, but at least she’ll be able to hold her daughter within two years rather than when they’re old women. Sienna packed away her briefcase and swore to never work for the judicial
Captain Davis felt awful losing his top detective. His angry fist banged on the desk in frustration. Regret. Shedding tears as if it was his daughter being taken from him. Besides hurting over Gina’s fate, he was disappointed at himself for letting Goldberg win.
Beverly Davis was just as upset when she heard the news. She and Gina had a close relationship. Despite their age difference, the two of them would yap it
up like high school buddies whenever they got together. Saxon broke it to her as gently as possible. But it didn’t help. Beverly felt like she lost her best friend.
“This isn’t right Sax,” Beverly preached. “She doesn’t deserve this. With all the police corruption going on in this city, why would this pencil-neck geek be
so hellbent on convicting one of the finest people we know? Name me one cop in that godforsaken precinct who cares more about their job than Gina?”
“I know honey,” Saxon sighed. “Breaks my heart. But believe it or not, this was the better option. Gina wanted to be sent to jail.” Beverly gasped. “She’s
so wrapped in guilt that she’s looking to punish herself. Sorry, Bev. I wish there was something I can say to make you feel better.”
“Do you know what will make me feel better?” “What?”
“Taking a trip down to City Hall and putting Goldberg in his proper place, which is on the receiving end of my foot!”
Beverly is a black belt in karate and a fan of MMA. Saxon knew she would make good on her word. However, the idea of both his wife and top officer serving time didn’t sound like a great idea. So, he talked her out of it.
Dwelling on the controversy, Saxon went to talk to his good friend, Police Commissioner Cornelius Wood. Thirty-year relationship between the two, facing good times and bad times together like brothers-at-arms.
“I hate this Sax,” said Wood. “Gina had what it took to make a difference, a major player in this war on crime. Years down the line, I always envisioned her sitting in a position you and I are both in now. I’m sorry.”
“If you’re so sorry then why would you side with that weasel?” Saxon
“What else could I do, Sax? I had one cop standing over two beaten civilians. If I had told Goldie to go sit on a hot curling iron then my neck would’ve been on the line as well, maybe the entire organization. It’s bad enough cops are being mistreated by these ridiculous cutbacks, so I didn’t want
to add fuel to the fire. I thought I was doing the right thing: sacrificing the career of one great cop to save hundreds of others. What else was I supposed to do?”
“I see your point. Goldberg...that sniveling coward. How did the city get tricked into electing him as mayor? Do you know he wanted me to take part in his political game? No chance in hell would I ever choose his career over Gina’s. I told him no. Either way, he looks like a public hero. Damn. Even if we held auditions, we’ll never find another cop like her.”
“I wouldn’t say that, my friend. I’m sure one day another will rise and take Vasquez’s place. Someone to restore law and order, by the book. The way it’s supposed to be.” Saxon agreed. “That being said, don’t you think it’s time you moved on, captain?”
“You mean retire?” Saxon dismissed. “Sorry, my friend. Father Time might
be breathing down my neck, but I can still work with the best of them.”
“Oh no! I’m not talking retirement. I mean away from the NYPD. You’ve done all you can for your precinct. And with Vasquez gone, more work will be piled on your shoulders. You just said no other cop would ever be as good as
her. So I say, let them start pulling their weight. Use your abilities where they’re needed the most. Up your game to the next level. Have a higher position in law enforcement.”
“You mean State Police?”
“Yes. There’s an opening for Assistant District Superintendent. With your qualifications and experience, I think you’d be perfect for the job. A new class of policemen who would greatly benefit from watching an officer of your caliber at work.”
“Thanks, Neil, but I think I’ll pass. I know I said I’m not ready to retire, but
I don’t know how long I’ll last on that level.”
“Did I forget to mention you’d be working with Governor Dubois instead of
“You’ve just convinced me. I accept.”
Also during this time, Alex got promoted to Special Agent for the Cold Case Division - crimes that were never solved. Within her first three months on the job, three of those cases got closed, thanks to her savvy and technological wizardry. Directors took notice as her accomplishments continued to grow. A year later, she became a team leader with five agents of her own to command.
Lastly, Gina was distressed hearing her mother entered the insanity plea. Even though the law was against her at this point, she wanted to honor the badge by taking whatever punishment suited the crime. She was then transported
to a psychiatric prison in Delaware that ran more like a hospital. Mental examinations and psychiatric counseling were given weekly. Talking to a shrink might help her cope with the regret weighing on her heart, she thought. After several months of therapy, she was wrong.