Police Interview Samantha
Samantha woke early at her mom’s house again. She felt sad and started to weep as she remembered the events that had happened over the last few days.
She quietly crept down the stairs to make herself a cup of tea, but when she went in the kitchen her mom was already sitting there at the dining table with a hankie in one hand and a tear or two running down her cheeks.
Samantha sat next to her and they tried to console each other. They sat crying, laughing and talking for ages. They remembered the good days with James and the not so good days. They talked and drank tea and talked some more, then all of a sudden it went quiet. Both of them realised what was coming next. The job, that everyone hates, sorting out a person’s funeral. "How do we start to organise the final chapter of someone life?" Samantha said quietly.
Samantha’s mom asked her if James had any special requests and if James ever talked about it. Samantha nodded and said, “yes, but I can’t afford them. He wanted music played from speakers attached to the lampposts as the hearse crawled along the road inside the cemetery, with a special classical piece that James loved, playing out as people arrived and walked behind the hearse. Then, when the cars get to the crematorium, a song from Stevie Wonders Secret life of plants album, playing." Samantha’s mom said we can raise some money if that’s what you want. Sam said, “No!” straight away. “He was with someone else when he died. He was unfaithful at least a couple of occasions that I know about.” She said. “I wouldn’t spend a penny more than I have too.” They talked a lot more about it and left it open for some more thought.
Samantha informed the doctors and sorted the death certificate. And then they remembered James life Insurance policy. Samantha found the relevant pieces of paper and they read it all word for word. The policy had lapsed over six months ago, so it wasn’t going to clear the Mortgage as she’d hoped.
Then her mom said, “Why don’t you put the house up for sale and move in with me for a while, or at least until you get settled. If there is any money left in your house you could get a little flat close by.”
Samantha nodded and said "That's a great idea if you don't mind mom. I would like to sell all the furniture with it, I just want some small stuff out of there and all the rest can go with the house.
Samantha’s next job was to phone the mortgage company and tell them she had the money and as soon as the cheque she had was cleared, she would bring the mortgage up to date but she was going to sell the house as soon as possible.
Then Samantha thought about the car insurance, but the paperwork was at her house and she would have to go and get it. Samantha phoned Susan at the shop and told her the bad news. She could hear Susan sobbing on the phone as she told her to shut the shop for now.
Samantha and her mom got dressed and they both walked back the house to find the car insurance policy so she could inform them about the accident. As Samantha opened the front door she was hesitant to go in at first. They held each other and made it through the front door and went into the kitchen. Samantha’s mom sat down at the table and Samantha went up to James’s office and sat at his desk looking through all the draws. She couldn’t find anything that would help her. She looked in his filing cabinet behind the door and eventually found a file and when she opened it the policy was on the top. As she looked at it, she breathed a sigh of relief when said read “Fully Comprehensive cover” and it expired in two months time. Samantha put the policy on the desk and looked around for anything else that she might need. She went through all the draws again and noticed a piece of paper under the foot of the desk with writing on it, as she picked it up she noticed a black leather case behind the desk. Samantha sat back down and read all the words on the piece of paper feeling a little sad as it was probably one of the last things James had written. Then she pulled the desk to see how heavy it was and if she would be able to pull it out to see what was in the case as the front door knocked. When Samantha stood up and looked out of the window she saw the two police officers standing there. She collected the paperwork she needed and went down to answer the door. DCI Clews spoke first. “I was really sorry to hear the Sad news about James, and then PC Ashton spoke, “Yes he seemed a nice bloke!” DCI Clews frowned at him and said as he looked back at Samantha, “We have some questions, but if it’s a bad time.”
Samantha pulled the door open a bit further. “No, come in!” With that, her mom came into the hall. “This is my mom, Alice,” Samantha said.
As they walked in they shook hands with her mom and they all went into the front room. Samantha and the police sat down and Alice asked if anyone wanted a cup of tea. They both nodded as Samantha put her hand up. “Not for me mom thanks.” Alice went into the kitchen. DCI Clews pulled out his notepad from his inside pocket and as he opened it he said. “We are sorry about this but we have some information and we were wondering if you could help us with some answers.” Samantha nodded and said, “I will if I can, but I didn’t have a lot to do with his job and the photography!”
DCI Clews started “I don’t know if you know but there was a car that court fire on the M42 last Friday!”
“Yes I saw it on the news,” Samantha said.
“Okay, at the beginning we had a call about a car on fire on the M42. When we got there we found a body in the boot.” Samantha looked vacant as she listened shaking her head.
“The car came from the Liverpool area and the man in the boot had the thumb of his right hand severed and his fingerprints had been rubbed off with sandpaper. But we know who he is from his D&A.” Samantha sat quietly looking at him.
“We were told that a women with long black hair a cream dress in a pink jacket got out the car and ran up the embankment. Now, this is where James comes into it because he picked her up and took her to a local garage in Meriden as you know from the time we called to talk with James before.” Samantha nodded. “Now James and the garage owner said, she had blonde hair and no jacket.” DCI Clews flicked through his notepad.
“Mr… the garage owner said... sorry, his secretary told us she was pregnant, so we are assuming she tucked the black wig and pink jacket up the front of her dress. From the garage, she got a taxi and went to a hotel in Sheldon.
Well, that’s what we were made to believe. But the hotel said they never saw her, so we assumed she met someone around that area and disappeared. As yet, we haven’t found her.” Samantha’s mom came into the room with the tea and placed the tray with some biscuits on the floor by them. “Thank you, Mrs Sullivan.” DCI Clews said smiling at her.
“Call me Alice please!” She said as she sat down smiling back.
“Now, going back to the car with the body in the boot.” Alice frowned and asked, “Shall I go?”
“No it’s ok, we are trying to find some more information on a case we are working on and James was involved. But until I tell the Samantha the facts we don’t know if she can help us.
“Now that James has passed away!” PC Ashton said.
DCI Clews looked at him shaking his head again.
Samantha brushed it aside and waited for him to speak.
“So I will go on and hopefully something might click into place.” PC Ashton picked up his tea and held it close to his mouth and as he drank it he made a loud sucking noise.
DCI Clews gave out a loud sigh. “So, in the car, as I said earlier, we found a body in the boot of a car that came from Liverpool.
On the same day, a Mrs Sloan phoned to tell us her husband was missing. It wasn’t him in the boot but it linked us into another case where a man, Mr Sloan had to give evidence against a Gang and he was in hiding because they threatened to harm him if he told the truth in court. So while he was in hiding they kidnapped his wife and held her hostage. Now just before the court case, minutes, in fact, she was found and delivered to the court, Mr Sloan gave evidence and the gang members went down.”
Samantha sat listening but she shook her head pretty much at everything he said.
“You don’t know anything about this at all, do you?”
“No, I’m really sorry. I don’t know half the things he got up to!” she said looking at her mom.
“I’m telling you all this because... James’s Car.” DCI Clews stopped to flick through his notepad again. “Are, registration number JSB 833.” He looked up at Samantha as she nodded. “Yes, that’s his number!”
Well, that car was seen around the courthouse area while Mrs Sloan was brought into court. It was on a CCTV, unfortunately, that’s the only one that worked that day.”
When we were here yesterday you said you said when you talked to James on the phone and he was up in Liverpool. You also said he was on a photo Shoot.” Samantha nodded again.
“Well, this is where it all goes wrong. There was no camera equipment in his car and no mobile phone.
Samantha pulled a strange face. “Well he had one with him as you know I talked to him. In fact, I talked to him about three or four times yesterday! I phoned him about coming home because we needed to talk, then I phoned him when you were with me, I phoned him again about the mortgage company that’s when he was on the M42.” PC Ashton leaned forward. “An eyewitness said he was on the phone at the time of the accident.”
DCI Clews turned and told him to "keep quiet!" in a stern voice and he apologised again for PC Ashton’s remarks.
Samantha’s eyes filled with tears. “If I hadn’t phoned him he might still be alive.” Her mom put her arm around her shoulder as DCI Clews said, “it wasn’t a phone call, it was a van that hit them in the side and forced the BMW into the central crash barrier.”
Samantha wiped her nose and her eyes and asked, “Who was she?”
DCI Clews stared at her and flicked through his notepad again. Her name was… Mrs Margret Pearson, she was a very unfortunate Trade Plate Driver that thumbed a lift on the M62.
Samantha’s eyes filled up again. “James always helped people if he could!” The tears welled up in her eyes as she burst out crying.
“I’m so sorry, are you ok to go on do you want a break for a minute or two?” DCI Clews turned and asked PC Ashton “Can you get Samantha a glass of water?”
Samantha calmed down and said, “No its ok, I thought James was at it again when the doctor told me there was a woman in the car with him. He had a few affairs over the last few years. No, I’m fine, sorry carry on!” PC Ashton sat down again.
“Her husband confirmed she was on the M62 hitching a lift.” Samantha nodded.
“Now going back to the accident we found a lot of red paint all over the side of James car and none of the cars in the accident where red. Could the damage of been there before do you know?
“No, he looked after it very well,” Sam said. “I was immaculate.”
“Ok, the phone and camera. Maybe they shot out the car on impact or even someone could have stolen them out the car at the scene.” DCI Clews looked in his notepad once more. “Are yes, we know he had a lot of cash in his pocket. £3480 and 59p, to be precise.”
“I know he was owed money from clients and maybe he went to Liverpool to collect some money. I don’t know, to be honest. We are behind with a number of payments and he knew we needed money fast to pay all the bills. I’m sorry there’s nothing I can say that will help as I said, I didn’t get involved in it much.
DCI Clews wasn’t getting anywhere and decided to give it up, Samantha knew nothing it was obvious.
“Ok I’ll leave it at that, for now, he said picking up his tea. “If you do think of anything that might help, just call me!” Samantha stood up and her mom collected the empty cups on the tray as the police left. “Bye Mrs… sorry, Alice.” DCI Clews shouted as he walked out the front door. “Thank you for your time, as I said, please call me, with anything you have.” They walked away and got in the car.
Samantha walked into the kitchen and dried the cups as her mom washed them. Her mom didn’t say anything. Samantha picked up the paperwork she found for the insurance company and said to her mom, “Come on let’s go back to yours!”
Just then Samantha's phone beeped and when she looked, it was a message from JP;
I hope you are feeling a little better today Sammy. Call me if you need anything! JP XX
Samantha put the phone in her pocket with a slight smile. She put their coat on and they left walking up the road arm in arm.
When they got back to the house Samantha said, “Are you ok mom? You’re very quiet!”
With a big smile, she said, “That copper was rather good-looking wasn’t he?”
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