Monday, December 17, 2012

Left Handed Bandit

It was a cold January night as detective Price and I were in the office filing away cases. The bourbon was on top of the mahogany desk in our musty third floor office on the corner of fifth and thirty second street. The room was dusted with the smell of stale cigarettes and a cheap cologne.
My eyes scanned the room and fell upon my boss. He was a man in his forties with a face hardened by long hours into the night going over files and revisiting evidence in cases he couldn't solve. He wore a gray suit with a red tie that settled against his perfectly pressed shirt. On his side he wore a revolver that he called lucky. His persona quieted people down when he entered the room, he was a very respected man that returned his respect towards people. The snow started to blanket the streets outside as we heard the wind tap lightly on the window. I poured myself another bourbon on the rocks and lifted the cup to my lips. The taste was smooth as it ran across my taste buds. My sensation was disturbed as I heard the door to our office begin to turn. The door swung open revealing a tall figure standing in our hallway. The figure walked in and in the dim light I could see her long brunette hair falling below her shoulders. Her face was long and her chin was cut like a diamond. Her eyes were a deep blue and underneath her left eye was a tiny mole. She introduced herself as Mrs. Victoria Purita and asked if she could have a seat. I stood up offering my seat and asked her if she would like a drink. She accepted and shed off her jacket. Underneath was a red strapped dressed covered in sequence. She spoke so softly when she finally settled into her seat. She took a sip and said "gentlemen I come to you tonight on business not on pleasure. My husband is a bank manager that is involved in moving money for the mob. My husband has no say in the manner as the owner of the bank has close ties to the Madrino family. A few days ago five hundred thousand dollars of the mob's money disappeared into thin air. My husband was put at fault and has been receiving death threats since than. Tonight was a charity benefit for my work and after my husband was supposed to pick me up, but he never showed. I called the house but got no answer. I took a taxi to the East End back to my home and when I got there the door had been kicked in and all of our things were strewn across the house. I found a note next to the phone, I fear for my husband's life and I'm afraid if I go to the police they will kill him. I need you guys to find the missing money before it is too late." Her eyes spoke a soft and sad truth, I glanced over at Price and I could see he was deep in thought.

After a moment he uttered "strange indeed." He took a sip of bourbon before addressing Mrs. Purita "Did you bring the letter?" Mrs. Purita reached into her purse and pulled out a hand written note. Detective Price reached for it before sitting back in his chair. He studied the paper intently before passing it over to me. The note read " You have something that belongs to us and we have something that belongs to you. Bring our five hundred thousand dollars to the docks near South Beach by five pm tomorrow or we start cutting off pieces of your husband and feeding him to the sharks. Do not go to the police, we have ears everywhere and if we suspect anything he will be killed immediately."

I looked up from the letter to see Detective Price staring at me patiently "Well Fredrick son what do you see in this note." I looked it over again but couldn't find any abnormalities, I replied by saying " I don't know what do you see?" Detective Price took his eyes off me and addressed Mrs. Purita. "I believe your husband is being set up, this is an odd question but do you know any employees at the bank that are left handed?" She traced her memory until she said " yes actually, my husband always complains that the other bank manager Thomas Stoggs demands the bank carries lefty supplies for him." Detective Price's mouth formed into a sneer that only meant he was on the trail of a lead. "And how tall is Thomas Stoggs?" Detective Price asked curiously. "He is about 6'3" exclaimed Mrs. Rupita. Detective Price banged down on his desk and said " I know who has not only your husband but also the money Mrs. Rupita." Detective Price turned towards me and saw my flabbergasted look on my face. "You see Fredrickson, the letter was written by a man that was left handed, I could tell by the way he hooked his letters. Judging by the drag of the pen it had to have been a tall man around 6'2 to 6'5 leaning over the table as he wrote. Sounds to me like Mr. Stoggs slipped into the bank used his keys to gain access to the vault and stole the money during Mr. Purita's shift, making it look like he was the culprit. Come we have no time to waste we must hurry."

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