Sins of the Fathers'

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Chapter 5

An hour and a half later Quinn was with Manny, Kris was sitting in her uncle’s office, and Jonas was talking with his dad.

“What can I help you with son?” Mitchell Evans asked as he sat coffee down in front of him.

He sat across from his dad in his office. “Kris, Quinn, and I are working the Benson case.” His dad nodded because he knew that already. He’d been retired for a few years but still kept in touch with a few people. “There was another murder last night Dad. Manny’s son and oldest daughter.”

“Rafael and Gabriella?” Mitchell asked, everyone in the city knew them.

Jonas sighed sadly. “Yeah Pop. They were shot like the Benson’s. Manny found them. They were supposed to call him after they finished cleaning up and when he didn’t hear from them he went back.”

“Jesus.” His father whispered. “That’s just…Damn.” He sat back in his chair, thinking about the Rodriguez family. “Was there any evidence left behind?”

Jonas nodded and showed him the pictures on his phone. “Another revolver and letter just like from the Benson scene.” Mitchell took the phone and enlarged the pictures as Jonas continued to talk. “On the second picture of the gun you can see there are small initials carved into the butt of it. The GBI already has the first one and Kris is on her way with the second to try to get the serial numbers off of them.”

Before Mitchell moved to the pictures of the note he said. “The guns look like they were the standard police issue from the mid to late 80’s.”

“I thought so too.” Jonas took his phone back. “I was hoping maybe you would remember someone with those initials. We think that Manny may have been involved as a juror on a case Clayton worked on. Maybe the officer was too. That seems to be the only way they could be linked because he has never been a victim or witness. At least not in any of Benson’s cases.An Assistant District Attorney handled the prosecution on the restaurant robbery case.Kris asked Manny but doesn’t remember. Of course who could blame him right now?”

Mitchell stood up and walked to the row of file cabinets behind him. “The initials look very familiar unfortunately.” He looked through a couple of drawers before finding what he was looking for. “I was probably two years into Internal Affairs when I was approached by this detective. He’d been on the job a while, maybe ten years. He was new to Narcotics, three months in at this point I think, and quite frankly I was surprised when he came to me.” He laid the file down in front of his son. “He was partnered with one of the most notorious detectives in the department at the time. His name was James Morgan Sr., almost everyone called him Jimmy. His partner’s name was Jacob Vance and he was as dirty as they come. Jimmy hadn’t been partnered with him long and of course had no idea that the department had been looking at him for a couple of years. So about two months into his partnership with Vance, Morgan showed up here one night. It was late and you and your mom were asleep. I just happened to be up working on some cases. Anyway, he tells me that he was involved in a bust earlier in the week with Vance and three other members of their team.” Jonas looked through the file as his father continued to talk. “During this bust the others kept some of the money, drugs, and weapons. Since he was fairly new to the team they offered him a cut to see what he’d do.”

Jonas had scanned through most of the file by this point. “He took his cut to keep suspicion off himself obviously and then he came to you.” His father sighed heavily and nodded, taking his seat behind his desk again. “No offense of course dad but why did he come to you?”

Mitchell smiled a little and shrugged. “I don’t know.I guess because we knew each other in passing. You know, passing each other in the station, at department barbecue’s or softball games. I think we even responded to a few calls together when he was still in uniform and when I was a detective before I joined Internal Affairs. I poured a couple of drinks and we sat in silence for a while. Even though he came to me it took him a few minutes to start talking. When he finally did start talking he was able to tell me about the bust and what the others had given him. He even brought the stuff with him.”

Jonas was pretty shocked at that. “What did you do with it?”

He pointed at the file. “I photographed it all, put it in evidence bags, labeled it, and took it to the station the next morning.”

Jonas flipped through the pictures. “Jesus.” Morgan’s cut was around $1,000 in cash, two 9mml, and two ounces of marijuana. “That’s one hell of a cut for a first time.”

“They were very much the go big or go home kind of crew.” His father laughed and nodded to the folder. “Keep looking.” Jonas flipped through the pictures and shook his head. “I’m not sure how he did it but Morgan was able to get pictures of everyone’s haul. That picture alone is Vance’s cut. These guys weren’t playing around.”

“There has to be at least $10,000 in cash and probably another $5,000 in drugs and weapons here.” He looked up as his father agreed. “Who the hell did they bust, a Columbian Cartel leader?” Which he knew was ridiculous but so was seeing that much stolen evidence. “So what happened?”

His father leaned over the desk and flipped to the back of the file. “Morgan was killed.”

Jonas’ eyes went wide. “What? By who?”

Mitchell shifted in his chair a little. “First you need to know what led up to it.” Jonas motioned for his dad to continue. “Four days before he was killed a call came in that he was dirty. We’d kept his reports of his partner quiet. Only my Lieutenant, our Chief, and I knew. Vance had slipped through too many times to bring anyone else in.” Jonas nodded in understanding. “That being said, the wrong person got the call about Morgan and had a search warrant within hours. We believed it was someone on Vance’s payroll and somehow they got a judge to sign off on it pretty quickly. They raided his house in the middle of the night, scared his family but worst of all found exactly what they were told would be there. It turned out that it was one of his own team members that made the call. They were trying to steer suspicion away from the rest of their group.”

“Someone had to have planted that stuff.” Mitchell smiled at his son and nodded. “What did you guys do?”

He spread his hands out palms up. “We couldn’t outright help him because of the case. It was too big to just let go. But the Chief went through back channels and helped get him out. Thankfully his fingerprints weren’t on any of the things found in his house. Four days later an officer down call went out and of course everyone responded. Vance called it in as a shootout with a known drug dealer named, Kielis Phillips. This dealer was also suspected by some to be protected by Vance and to be on his payroll. By the time back up and the EMT’s got there Morgan and Phillips were dead and Vance had a gunshot wound in the arm. His statement was that they met up with Phillips to get some information on a big deal that was going down. He said Phillips freaked out and shot Morgan.” He shrugged at his son’s disbelieving look. “There was no one alive to argue with him.”

Now Jonas was up pacing. “You said he had a family?”

“Yes.” His father pulled out a picture from the file. “He had a wife and a son, Martha and James Jr.”

Jonas looked at it for a minute. “What happened to them?”

Mitchell looked at the picture and smiled sadly. “They disappeared.”

“What do you mean they disappeared?” Jonas picked up the file and looked at the picture again.

Mitchell motioned towards the family photo. “Just that son. They disappeared without a trace. One week everyone was going by there to offer support and the next week the house was cleared out like no one had ever lived there.They left in the middle of the night.”

Jonas dry scrubbed his face and sighed. “So you think the initials on the second gun belong to this Vance guy?” His father nodded. “What happened to him?”

“All of the witnesses the city had gathered against him disappeared. The judge gave the D.A. 48 hours to find them.Everyone was certain that they all disappeared because Vance had threatened them.Of course we couldn’t prove it so the judge had no choice but to declare a mistrial.”He put everything back in the folder and slid it to his son. “A week after the mistrial for the murder of his partner and the corruption charges he was found dead in his apartment.” His father pointed to his chest. “Three shots center mass.”

“Shit. Did they find who killed him?” He asked and his father shook his head. “I guess no one cared what happened after what he did.”

Mitchell smiled and walked around his desk. “That’s pretty much it.” He clapped his son on the shoulder. “I really hope these files help you guys and you know you can call me anytime.”

Jonas walked over and hugged his dad. “Thanks Pop.” He waved the stack of files. “This is definitely going to help. Tell mom I said hi and we’ll be over Sunday for lunch.”

“Will do son.” He walked him to the door and waved as he left.

Kris had just as much luck with her uncle at the GBI. He was able to fast track both guns and get the serial numbers for them. Now all she needed was to get back to the station and them against the files the department had.

She checked her text messages when she got to her car. There were was a group message started by Quinn and Jonas.

Quinn was on his way to his car when he sent Kris and Jonas a group text. “Nothing new from Manny. He did give me his notes from the juries he served on. How’d it go for you guys? Meet you at the station?”

Jonas responded to Quinn’s message before he left his father’s house. “You won’t believe what I got from my dad, how’d it go for you Kris? Meet you guys at the station?

Kris responded to both men with a smile. “Pretty sure I got something useful too. Meet you at the station in an hour. I’ll bring coffee and food.” Both men responded with a confirmation and she started her drive back to Macon.

An hour later she walked into Homicide with breakfast, coffee, and the information from the GBI. The guys were at their desks when she walked in. “Hey.”

Quinn reached over and squeezed her hip. “Hey. So you got something too?”

Kris nodded and passed around the coffee and food. “I did but it sounds like Jonas got something better.”

Her partner smiled wide and held up the files his father had given him. “We should go somewhere with more room and where it’s private.”

They grabbed their breakfast and walked to the interrogation room they’d been using for the past couple of months. They spread out their food while they settled at the table. “What are we looking at partner?”

Jonas passed everything around as he gave a breakdown of what he got from his father. “I showed him the pictures of the gun with the initials. He’s pretty certain that it belongs to this Jacob Vance. The city keeps records of the guns they issue so it shouldn’t be a problem especially now that we have the serial numbers too.”

Quinn held up the picture of the Morgan family. “Where’s the wife and son?”

Jonas held out his hands palms up. “They disappeared the week after James’ death. My dad said one week they were there and then the next week it was like no one had ever lived there.”

Kris waved her fork around as she talked. “We need to find them because they could be in danger too. We need to do a search with their dates of birth and see if anyone applied for a new driver’s license and new social security cards around the time of their disappearance.”

Both men nodded in agreement and Quinn said. “We should also go to the places where they all lived. Maybe check the county records to see when or if the Morgan house was sold. Also we could check with moving companies and storage buildings. After 20 years it’s probably a long shot with them but you never know. I highly doubt if anyone has records that far back.”

“The real question is why now? I mean, why is all of this stuff emerging 20 years later?” Kris picked up the file and started reading through it. “We need to figure out what the link is to all of these people and who else the killer could be after.” She pulled out her phone and called Clayton Benson. After a few minutes she hung up. “He was the prosecutor on the Vance case. It was his first high profile case as the D.A. He said the files should be here somewhere. He couldn’t remember the judge or the defense attorney’s names though.”

The guys started looking through the files again but couldn’t find the one for Vance. “We need to go to the court house.” Quinn said excitedly. “They have to keep copies of every case in the city. That far back is probably going to be micro filch or something like that but we can go down there and find it on our own.” They packed up their breakfast, grabbed the other files they’d need and headed for the court house.

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