Midnight Owl (A Joe Leverette Mystery, Book 1)

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CHAPTER EIGHT

Leverette walked up to Marsden.

“You ready?” he asked.

“Yeah, I guess,” Marsden answered. “I’m glad we don’t get many dismemberment cases.”

“I know,” Leverette said and honestly felt sorry for the young detective. “Come on, let’s get to the factory.”

Marsden closed his eyes and sighed deeply. “I’m ready.”

They headed out the door and into their car. Marsden pulled the page from the folder to see which factory to go to.

“It’s on 24th near Dove,” Marsden said as Leverette pulled out the parking lot.

“Not sure if Carrington will be there. Barb wasn’t sure which one he went to when I asked her. He and Marcie headed out at the same time she did.”

Leverette winced when Marsden said Marcie. He really didn’t like her.

“Doesn’t matter. He has a good team,” Leverestte said as they turned onto Lapeer and headed for 24th.

“Did it say which factory?”

“Parker’s Plastics,” Marsden answered. “It’s in the Industrial Park.”

They turned left onto 24th and headed to Dove. Rotating lights from the patrol car led them right to the spot. They pulled into the parking lot and saw that Carrington was examining the arm. He didn’t notice them pull in and get out of their car.

The patrol officers had already put a crime scene tape around the area.

“I’ll go talk to the patrol guys. That must be the guy who found the arm with them,” Marsden said as he got out of the car.

“I’ll go see Carrington,” Leverette said and headed toward the doctor.

The arm was sitting on top of a pile of pallets. That made it easier for Carrington to look it over since he didn’t have to bend or kneel over it.

“Hey, Doc,” Leverette said as he approached him.

Carrington, who was slightly leaning over the arm, jumped a little and turned to see Leverette. “Hi,” was all he said as he gained his composure.

“Think it’s from the same gal?” Leverette asked as he looked at the right arm.

“Nails are painted the same red, and the cut looks the same. I think it might be. Won’t know for sure,” he said as he straightened himself.

“I heard they found another arm at a home,” Leverette said.

“Yeah, Marcie’s at that one. Barb called just now and said she’s pretty sure it’s the same woman. The other leg, that is.”

“I wonder how much more he cut up,” Leverette said.

“I was wondering the same thing,” Carrington said. “He might have removed the head and cut the body into pieces. Won’t know until, or if, we get the rest of her.”

“Damn. This case is keeping us busy. We have a criminologist trying to figure it out. Nothing seems to fit a pattern.”

“This crazed killer might not follow a pattern,” Carrington said. “There have been cases where there is no rhyme-or-reason.”

“True,” Leverette said. “I’m going to see what Marsden found out.” He headed to the four who were near the patrol car. He pulled Marsden away from the group.

“What’d doc say?” Marsden asked.

“He thinks it’s probably the same woman,” Leverette said. “Won’t know for sure until he checks them all.”

“Wonder if Gordon found a connection to the dump sites,” Marsden said. “He’s our best criminologist.”

“That would really help. So far we found parts at the river, by a small street, by this factory and at a house,” Leverette said with a look of being in deep thought on his face. “I have no idea.”

“The guy who found it is DeShawn Davis. He came in a little while ago,” Marsden said. He looked at his watch. It’s 7:30 AM. They walked up to DeShawn and the patrol officers.

Leverette had to look up to make eye contact with DeShawn. He had to be close to seven feet tall, and had a muscular build on him that would make any bodybuilder jealous. DeShawn was a dark chocolate brown and his shaved head had sweat running down it as though he’d run a marathon. Leverette thought he didn’t look like someone who would be afraid of anything.

Marsden, who also had to look up to DeShawn, made the introductions.

“Can you tell us what happened?”

“Like I told the officer, I came out to get some pallets and it was there. Scared the bejesus out of me and I don’t scare easily,” DeShawn told them.

“What time was it you found the arm?” Leverestte asked.

“Just after seven. I came out to get some pallets and it was there. Well, I saw the black bag and when I picked it up it felt funny. I put it back. I’ll give you my prints if you want.”

“What about your boss? Did he touch it?” Leverette asked.

“Yeah, but he had gloves with him and put them on first,” DeShawn said. “Can I see the arm?”

Marsden was visibly shaken. “You want to see it?”

“Yeah. I wanted to be an ME but didn’t have the opportunity to go to school.”

“No. Its better you don’t,” Leverette said. “Dr. Carrington’s going to take it to the lab and start running tests.”

“Okay,” he said, disappointed. He looked at Marsden. “Man, you look like you’re about to faint.”

Leverette choked back a laugh. “He doesn’t like body parts,” was all he said.

“Oh,” DeShawn said. “You guys still need me? I wanna get back to work and try to put this behind me.”

Leverette looked at the cameras on the building.

“Before you go can you tell me if those cameras work?”

“Yeah. They run 24/7. If you go to the office they can run you a copy,” DeShawn said.

“You can go. We have your information if we need you. And you have ours if you think of anything,” Leverette said.

DeShawn and his boss headed back into the factory. Fortunately they had other pallets they could use and left those alone like the detectives had told them.

But as DeShawn started getting the other pallets the dream came back to him. He’d been hoping it would go away. He never remembered his dreams for more than a minute when he woke up. Long enough to laugh at them or try to understand them. This one was hanging on.

He sat down and the dream played in his head. He remembered seeing a woman’s body on a metal-looking table, a man dressed in some kind of plastic outfit with his head and face covered. All DeShawn could see were his eyes. Dark scary eyes. He watched the man put the arm in the black bag and tie off the top.

DeShawn heard three quick hoots from an owl and the man looked him in the eyes. He put his finger to his lips and DeShawn heard him say “Shh.”

Remembering the dream made him shiver. He knew not to say anything to the cops because he didn’t believe it was anything more than a bad dream, a dream that wouldn’t leave him, but a dream about something that hadn’t happened yet.

Carrington carried the arm to his van and set it in the back. After he shut the doors he waddled over to Leverette.

“He was really interested in the arm,” Leverette told Carrington. “Said he wanted to be an ME at one time.”

“That explains why he was trying so hard to get a look at what I was doing while the officers questioned him,” Carrington said.

“Nothing personal, doc, but your job is just ...” Marsden couldn’t think of the right words to say and shook his head.

Carrington smiled. “I know. Well, I’m going to the lab. Once Marcie gets back we’ll give her a good looking over,” Carrington said and waddled to his van, squeezed in and left.

Leverette noticed Marsden wasn’t looking any better.

“Let’s head out to the house and then we’ll get back to the precinct,” Leverette said. Marsden nodded and followed him to the car. He was worried that he might vomit if he tried to talk.

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