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A Conspiratorial Whisper


Dino “Space-Knot” Sanchez was convicted of manslaughter, then granted a retrial on appeal, then acquitted. He was a product of Bridgeport's West-Side Ghetto with twenty-five years of living on the street with no permanent address to call home. He was an enigma to his family and friends and usually enjoyed being alone when he was not stealing, selling drugs or putting holes in human flesh.

If the police could stabilize him for just a few moments, they would find thousands, even hundreds of thousands of dollars in his mattress. Sadly, he had no stable home, and no mattress to rip apart. What he did have, was the means to pay off the bad apples on the police force. He had the means to hire the best lawyers Fairfield County could offer. He was clearly, the “Shit.”

Outside a small cape over on Clinton Avenue near the North Avenue side, a group of police, for an hour or so were the picture of confidence. They were hiding behind their unmarked squad cars whispering jokes and funny stories until they got the green light to storm into that cape. They got a tip that Space-Knot was cutting up a paid snitch in small pieces so that he could send them to all who hired him out.

The police were optimistic and they would try to make it a clean arrest so that he wouldn't walk free again. The lead detective on the case would move slowly toward his men and dropped his voice to a conspiratorial whisper.

“That piece of shit will wish he'd been found guilty.”

The officers under his command smiled, but knew that the wait to move in would become agonizing. Sometimes it took longer so that they could get it right. They knew that and understood it, but hated it.

“I made his life a freaking hell,” the lead detective continued. “Now we finish it up.”

“But you know sir,” started a uniform. “He is a wild animal.”

“Then we must tame that son of a bitch and then cage him.”

“If I could suggest, we just do our job.”

“No, he's not going to beat this wrap,” the lead detective smiled. “I got something for his ass.”

“Planting something?”

“Yep, something that's going to stick.”

The uniform grimaced, but understood the need to keep Space Knot off the streets.

The call to go came in and the lead detective swallowed hard and then gave the order. Raw doubt stuck in the uniform's throat as they swarmed into the house kicking in the front and back doors.

The lead detective's wife and three children were tied to wooden chairs gagged and shot in the back of the head execution style. Two girls, eleven and nine, and the boy was seven.

That caught the lead detective by surprise as he paced momentarily back and forth in a smoldering rage. He released a piercing scream and shot out the front door not knowing where he was going, but in his heart he knew he wanted to die before he got there.


© 2018 Frank Atanacio