A SERIAL KILLER IS LOOSE! MURDER MOST FOUL! by GARRY ARMSTRONG (PART 3)

THIS IS FICTION! NOT TRUE. A STORY. NOT A REAL EVENT.

Homage to MidSomer Murders from Garry Armstrong, the show’s current number one fan. And with a nod  and a wink to Sunset Boulevard and Philip Marlowe. On the occasion of our granddaughter’s 20th birthday, a lovely little murder.

Photographs (mostly) by Marilyn Armstrong,  except for a couple by Garry, aka “The first Victim.”


THE THIRD VICTIM: Looking for Connections!

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Some of the usual suspects were released on ROR four days ago. A bluff move to flush out perps higher up the chain. But then another twist. A third body. The Third Man.

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The corpse was found less than an hour after the suspects’ release…. which was before any media update. The cops were keeping a tight lid on information. All the released suspects were being closely tailed.

The third victim was found  in a field adjoining the site of the original crimes. All doubts vanished. For the newshounds, it was clear.  A serial killer at work!!  Police refused comment. Of course. Unnamed sources close to the investigation admit that motivation for the three murders remains murky.

Which has only heightened media speculation.

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Is there a drug connection? Money laundering? Has the Mob invaded this sleepy New England village?

An Interpol agent was spotted at the latest crime scene. A handout statement offered no insight why international law enforcement was now involved.

Then, a break from a trusted, veteran reporter — retired but he sometimes helps when police need answers.

A connection was spotted between two of the three victims. Similar tattoos. The veteran reporter noticed the familiar inks and huddled with Interpol to see if there’s a link to the Russian mob. No confirmation from the reporter or Interpol, but chatter with gangland tattoo experts has been confirmed.

Some of the police are trying to remain under cover.

Some of the police are trying to remain under cover. This group from Dodge City are keeping a low profile.

Meanwhile, the now four-pronged investigation is advancing on multiple fronts. State troopers and local detectives are looking for connections between the three victims.

Was the first victim an anomaly or grisly diversion in the serial killings? Or, were the later killings an attempt to befog the first murder? Was this a hate crime? If so, what do the haters hate?

So many questions, so few answers.

Network news outlets have set up staging areas, each trying to scoop the other as they slaver over every new bit of gossip and try to spin it into the story. The FBI’s BAU (Behavior Analyst Unit) is on the case and their current thinking is that the killer is a pro. A stone cold killer.

They’re working backwards, trying to connect the three murders. Fresh eyes are looking at murders number one and two.


Background Review: THE SECOND VICTIM: Murder most foul!

(There will be a short quiz following the conclusion of this story.)

Local, state and federal investigators are offering minimal information about the latest victim. CSU photos show he was white, middle-aged, and apparently healthy. There’s no word on how or when the victim was killed. A local resident confirmed the body was found in the same area, the same farm land where the first murder occurred more than two weeks ago.

Some wonder if  this is a worse case scenario. It’s top buzz on talk shows.

A SERIAL killer running amok…. on the heels of the late summer birthday party murder!!

Victim Number Two

Victim Number Two

Shock waves continue to reverberate. It’s the ultimate loss of innocence for a small town where typically, the top news item is roadwork tying up traffic on main street. Burglaries or car break-ins are the high-priority items on the police blotter. No one worries about big city violence. Everyone knows everybody. It’s that kind of town.


THE BEGINNING OF THE STORY – The First Victim

My granddaughter’s birthday party murder was the game changer!

State police are still sifting through the testimony of party guests. Records are being checked for previous criminal activity. Cold cases are being unwrapped, searching for clues or patterns.

Reviewing party guests, no one stands out as an obvious suspect. Everyone seems pleasant, amiable. Perhaps not overly friendly, but polite and civil. No blatant hostility was evident. No obvious suspects stand out from the crowd.


THE SUSPECTS

Profilers are looking at the gathering, breaking them down into age groups and backgrounds. Motive is the big question. Everyone is so vague in their answers. This case calls for someone with expertise.

And, that would be me. The victim. This is my case, my story. I will tell it best because it revolves around me. It always did, in life and now, in death.

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A retired, award-winning TV News reporter, I was checking out suspicious things before my demise that warm summer’s day. Now I know it was no coincidence, but at the time, I was bemused by the variety of possible weapons I found in the shed. All so readily available to anyone with a grudge and an opportunity to commit murder.

I’d covered so many murders in my forty plus years on the job, I knew something was amiss. Something was strange, wrong. Creepy. Unfortunately, I was right. Pity I didn’t realize the object was … me.

I didn’t say anything to anyone. It was pleasant party. I hoped we could avoid family squabbles and enjoy the festivities and go home with nothing more than mild indigestion to deal with. Everyone was focused on food. Hot dogs, burgers, salad, coke and beer. Good stuff. Classic American cuisine.

I was on my third or fourth hot dog. Feeling pretty good. I discreetly eyed the other guests, trying to put those weapons I’d seen out of my mind. Conversation was light. Restrained. Most guests kept their distance. Something was amiss, but I couldn’t put my finger on precisely what.

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It fell on me to make some toasts, I suppose because of my professional background. I looked at the faces as I offered some light banter. No one seemed offended — but no one really laughed. I must’ve touched someone’s hot button — but who?

I turned around to get some water. I felt a whack on the back of my head. The world went blank.

The Victim!

The FIRST victim!

On the ground unable to move, I could still hear the people gathered around me. I hoped someone was calling for help, but it seemed everyone was taking pictures — of me — or selfies with my body as background.

I heard giggles and laughter. Then nothing. Nothing but The Big Sleep.


What’s the motive? Where are the connections? Is it a stone-cold killer or a killer made of actual stone? Tune in next week for another episode of MidSummer Murder!


Part I – LATE MIDSUMMER MURDER MYSTERY BY GARRY ARMSTRONG

Part II – A SERIAL KILLER? LATE SUMMER MURDER MYSTERY BY GARRY ARMSTRONG (PART 2)

THE BAY IN THE BACK

This is a nice little piece of Boston history. Most people don’t realize almost all of modern Boston began as landfill projects. I believe Back Bay was the first major city area built on landfill.

This is Real Life.

boston_1630_1675The year was 1630. They looked across a swampy bay that seemed somewhat eerie in how quiet it was. They could see their boats in the distance bobbing up and down in their newly made harbor. The smell of the mud and animals wafted up toward them as they stared into the future of what this land could behold.

Almost 400 hundred years later, I looked across the same water. It was in a very different shape now; wrinkles and hills still shaping the streets of the old city. Boston has been shaped and melded into an industrial, financial, and scholarly city that is very different from its beginnings.

I was taken to Boston the new-fangled way, a very different trip than the first settlers. Boston Logan International Airport is fairly atypical for a large city because it’s so close to downtown. It took a quick subway ride to get to…

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LIKE DRY LEAVES

WEEKLY WORDPRESS PHOTO CHALLENGENOSTALGIA | THE DAILY POST


I am not as nostalgic about the past as most people. I had a difficult and often unpleasant growing up and it’s hard to put aside the unhappy child to find happy memories. They get tangled.

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It is in the autumn where whatever good memories exist continue to live. That perpetual autumn I can sometimes smell in the air this time of year. It is probably why I love this season. Fall signals the return to school and what passed for “normal” in my world.

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I was a New Yorker. I’m sure it was cooler there 50 plus years ago than it is today. Especially in the fall.

And, I loved school. I know this was not a popular point of view in the kid world, but I loved it. Home kind of sucked. School was better. Orderly. I had assignments. Things to learn. Teachers didn’t beat students and there were very few moments of sheer terror to cope with. Unlike home. In generating fear, schoolyard bullies were amateurs compared to my father.

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The thing I remember best and most fondly were the sound of the leaves crunching under my squeaky new leather shoes. The shoes always gave me blisters, no matter what salesmen in stores told my mother about the perfect fit. I don’t know why she believed them when they told her the shoes fit, but never believed me when I told her they hurt.

I participate in WordPress' Weekly Photo Challenge 2016

I participate in WordPress’ Weekly Photo Challenge 2016

SHARING MY WORLD ON THE LAST DAY OF SEPTEMBER

I can’t believe it’s the end of September. My head is spinning with the swift passage this year from spring through summer … with a trip to nightmare caterpillar attack in the middle.

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Exactly one year ago … the colors weren’t up yet then, either. Next week.

Well, it is here and no way around it. I love the fall, though it doesn’t look much like it yet. Still not much color showing around here, but probably more in town … which is where we will go over the weekend. Right now, we are still trying to keep Garry warm and cozy while his cold goes away.

And now …

A class you wish you would have taken?

Honestly? I can’t think of one. I pretty much took whatever I felt like, which is why it took me a long time to finish a degree, what with changing majors three (four?) times. Sometimes, I’m not clear on what my major finally turned out to be. I think Drama. Or maybe Speech. Possibly both?

What’s your favorite comic figure and why?

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Always have had a soft sport for the Supe. He could fly. If he flew very fast against the earth’s rotation, he made time go the other way, as in backward. No one would do that again until Captain Kirk did it in Star Trek. But Superman did it first and he didn’t need no stinking starship!

Name something you wish you could like.

Soy curd. Can’t stand the stuff. I wish I didn’t hate it, but I really do. Yuck.

Tell me about your first crush / first date / first kiss.

No, I don’t think so. Especially since I don’t actually remember who it was, when, or what the circumstances might have been. The one thing I’m sure of was that it was remarkably unimportant. Even when it happened.

Who was your best friend when you were 10?

Mary (left), Marilyn (middle), Carol (right). I think we were about 6 or 7.

Mary (left), Marilyn (middle), Carol (right).

Carol, from next door. From when I first moved into the neighborhood until we finished high school. College changed everything. I was her best friend, but she was not mine. Sometimes, it’s like that.

What sign are you? Do you believe in astrology?

I am a Sun in Pisces, Moon in Scorpio, with a Rising Leo conjunct Saturn (Pluto in the first house). Just saying.

Marilyn's Horoscope

Share Your World – 2016 Week 39

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ROUND AND ROUND – CEE’S B & W PHOTO CHALLENGE

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Circles and Curves


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From the watch on your wrist to the clock on the tower … from the wheels of your car, to the wheel that spins the thread. Inventing the wheel was one giant step for human technology. It is the basis of pretty much every else, in one way or the other.

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DOUBLE TROUBLE – THURSDAY SPECIAL

Thursday’s Special: Double


When you have two black Scottish Terriers that you, yourself have trouble telling apart at a quick glance, double is what you see. The two pups together are more obviously different. Gibbs is bigger, longer, and lower. He’s more “doggy” and Bonnie is more “bitchy” which is as it should be. Gibbs is stronger and more gracefully athletic. Bonnie is bouncy, cheerful, the happiest dog in this best of all possible worlds, the Candide of small dogs.

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And then there are the swans and the geese. Both mate for life and you will rarely see one bird without the other nearby.

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