Chapter 21: cornering a murderer
It took about an hour after Reynolds was brought into the station under arrest for him to be p into the interrogation room. Hammond and Bell were able to watch him through the one-way glass installed in one of the walls. Reynolds was nervous and sweating. He paced back and forth in the room like a stressed cat.
They would let him sweat a while before entering the room. An experienced criminal sits awaiting questioning. In his mind, it’s all a game of cat and mouse. He would take the time alone, before questioning to come up with believable lies trying to throw the cops off. A first timer like Reynolds typically paces. Worried to death that he is going to jail and now everyone will know of the dastardly deeds he had perpetrated.
Hammond and Bell entered the room. There were no exchanged pleasantries between the former friends. Hammond remained standing while Bell seated himself at the table in front of Reynolds. Hammond walked over and sat on the edge of the table as close as he could get to Reynolds.
“Do you know why you’re under arrest Ed?” asked Hammond.
“No, something about mischief, I was told.” Replied Reynolds.
“That’s right. You’ve been lying to us, Ed.”
“What do you mean?” Asked Reynolds.
“Tell us again about the threatening phone calls you received.”
“Well you heard for yourself Tony, that guy means business, and you know what, I was thinking about it and I think I know who it is.” Stated Reynolds.
“Oh, who might that be?”
“Steven Stewart! It all makes perfect sense now Tony; he’s trying to protect himself. He doesn’t want me talking to the police because of his involvement in rigging the election. Don’t you see it, Tony?” Exclaimed Reynolds.
“You know what Ed. That would make sense if it weren’t for one small problem.”
“What do you mean?”
“Ed, Stewarts been dead for several days now. His goon Reuben Macdonald killed him the other day.”
Ed Reynolds sat back in his chair. His face dropped, and he looked like he had just learned of a death in the family. His mind raced. Reynolds had counted on implicating Stewart as the threatening caller. From there he had planned to suggest that Stewart was probably Hillary’s murderer. He hoped this would take any suspicion away from his responsibility in the murder.
“Ed, do you want to tell us about your gambling debt?” asked Hammond
“And then maybe you could enlighten us as to why you made the phony recording. You know we had it analyzed; it was your voice on the recording Ed. You really must have hated Hillary Bush, Ed.” Stated Hammond.
“I don’t know what to say, Tony, we’ve always been such good friends. I don’t know what you want me to say.” Said Reynolds in a low voice.
“How about telling us the truth Ed. We know you’re involved in the murder. I can only tell you that it would be a lot better for you to come clean and tell us exactly what happened. ” Said Hammond in a raised voice.
Ed Reynolds sat with his head in his hands. As a lawyer, he knew he should say nothing. If he told the officers the truth it would go better for him in court: he knew that. He also knew that he would not be tried in Lindsiville. He was too well known here; he knew the venue would change to a neighboring city.
The only question in his mind was: how good a case did they have against him. They didn’t have the murder weapon; it was still in the back of his car. Reynolds thought to himself: he hasn’t got enough evidence, Hammond is playing me, and I’m saying nothing.
“We’re going to let you think about it for a while Ed.” Hammond said as he and Bell moved toward the door.
This little break in the interrogation was needed not only to give Reynolds a chance to entertain the thought of confessing, but it was required time to execute the search warrant at the Reynolds’s home. Hammond knew that without the weapon used to kill Hillary he might have to release Reynolds. The minor offence of mischief was not enough to keep him in custody.
An hour went by with no word from the detectives executing the search warrant.
Bell remembered a piece of evidence that had been collected by the forensic guys at his request. He remembered the footprints at the windowless side of the house. The murderer must have left them. Bell went back into the interrogation room and seized the shoes that Reynolds was wearing. Then he requested forensics to bring over the plaster cast containing the shoe impression taken at the scene.
Hammond and Bell along with two of the forensic experts examined the shoe imprint comparing it with the shoes taken from Reynolds. They were a visual match. The forensic guys would have to take photos for proper comparison. In their opinion, they were comfortable matching Reynolds’s shoes to the prints in the plaster cast.
“That puts him at the scene on the night of the murder, good work Dinger, that gets us one step closer to closing this case,” said Hammond.
“Now if the boys searching his house come up with the murder weapon we’ve got him.” Exclaimed Bell.
Another hour went by with no word from the search team. Then finally into the office walked the plainclothes officers. Rick, the lead detective, had a smirk on his face and was holding something behind his back.
“Tell me you got the weapon!” exclaimed Dinger Bell.
With that Rick revealed an evidence bag that he was secreting behind his back. In the bag, there was a car tire iron.
“Are you sure this is the weapon?” asked Hammond.
“Well, I’m sure when you compare the fresh blood and hair on the end of the tire iron to Hillary Bush’s you will have a match” replied Rick.
“We’ve got him now Tony.” Said Bell.
Bell and Hammond went back into the interrogation room. This time both of the officers sat at the table.
“Well, what have you decided Ed? Are you going to tell us what happened? This is your last chance to come clean with us.” Said Hammond.
“Tony, you know I didn’t do it. I was nowhere near there; I was at home in bed.” Replied Reynolds.
“Really! Then why have we got your fresh footprints at the side of the house? Were you waiting for someone to leave so you could go in and kill Hillary?” said Bell.
“Ed, I’m very disappointed with you. We were willing to put a good word in for you with the D.A., I mean we have all the evidence we need Ed. Including the tire iron you bashed in her skull with” said Hammond.
Ed Reynolds nearly fainted. It was over, they had him, and he knew it. His best course of action now would be to make a full statement and hope for clemency.
“Well boys, there’s no need for me to pretend any longer. Yes, I killed that filthy bitch, and I’m glad I did! Tony, she was vile she had no conscience or scruples of any kind. I’ll tell you what happened.
Over the next hour, Reynolds made a complete statement. He had gone to the Bush house armed with the tire iron with every intention of killing Hillary Bush. When he went to the front door, he could see inside and saw Hillary and another woman going up the stairs to the bedroom. He decided to wait at the side of the house until the woman left.
About an hour later the front door opened and the second woman came out and proceeded to a car nearby. As she was getting into the vehicle, Hillary came out of the house and went to the second woman now in the driver’s seat of the car. Hillary had left her front door wide open. Ed took the opportunity to slip into the house and hide inside while Hillary was kissing the other female goodbye. Hillary came back in the house and closed and locked the front door.
Ed Reynolds waited an hour just in case the second female got amorous again and showed up looking for more action. When Ed thought enough time had gone by and Hillary was probably asleep, he took a book lying nearby and threw it o the floor making enough noise to alert Hillary. As expected, Hillary was wakened by the noise. And she came downstairs to investigate. As she was entering the Kitchen Ed came up behind her and clubbed her over the head with the tire iron. He hit her with so much force he felt her skull collapse from the blow. Hillary fell to the floor, and before long a pool of blood settled around her head. Ed waited just to make sure Hillary didn’t make a miraculous recovery. Then he left the house making sure the front door locked behind him. Without thinking he threw the tire iron back into the trunk of his car.