The Fate of Miss Ellie
It was a sweltering ninety-nine degrees in Calhoun, Georgia, that afternoon.The muggy air was so thick you almost had to cut your way through it, but that didn’t halt Miss Ellie Greenbaum’s antics in the courtroom.
The thwack of Judge Perdy’s gavel echoed off the walls of the one room courthouse as he demanded silence. “I will have order in my courtroom.” He pointed his gavel at Miss Ellie. “Your caterwauling and fainting spells will not affect the jury’s decision. I’ll give you one more chance before holding you in contempt.” He banged his gavel once more to show his authority.” Prosecutor, you may continue.”
“Before I was so rudely interrupted, I was about to ask Officer Daniels to identify exhibit A.” He held up a bag with a bottle inside and made sure the jury got a look at it. “This is arsenic we found in Miss Ellie’s pantry.” He pulled out his handkerchief and wiped away the sweat beading around his hairline. “The prosecution rests your honor.” He took his seat.
Judge Perdy looked at the defense attorney. “Are there any more surprises before we hand over this case to the jury?”
“No, your honor the defense rests.”
“We will resume when the jury is done with deliberations.” He banged his gavel in confirmation.
The next morning the jury was in, and the fate of Miss Ellie was in their hands. She sat quaintly, fanning herself as she watched the jury file into their seats.
“Foreman, may we hear the verdict,” Judge Perdy asked.
The foreman stood as he read the verdict. “We find the defendant guilty of the murder of Jonathon Hayes.”
Miss Ellie went into hysterics, heaving, and sobbing as the bailiff took her away.
Whispers danced around the courtroom as gossip spread like wildflowers, but only Miss Ellie knew why.