Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Felony False Reporting

I've shoved the e-version of A Child of Magic through KDP, and it should go live sometime in the next day or so; I'll post a link when that happens. Meanwhile, here's another snippet:

“So you based the report of a kidnapping on a note, a car seat, and a stuffed animal," the cop summarized. "Huh. When your husband called us, he made it sound a bit more solid than that. And he did not mention that you’d seen the kid at the same time he was reporting the kidnapping. Want to explain that bit to me?”

“I… can’t,” I said. We didn’t have time to bring the APD up to speed on the real activities of the Center. It might take hours, maybe days, to convince them that some of us really could teleport; it had taken weeks to convince Prakash Bhatia.

Esposito stood up, his face darkening. “We have sent an officer to search your residence in case the kid just crawled into a corner somewhere. Other officers are canvassing your neighbors for evidence of anything to support your theory that this woman just drove off with your kid. We’ve mobilized a ground search team to check every square foot of the territory around your condo for anything that might be a clue: clothing, diapers, a toy. They’re looking under bushes and inside culverts and checking for recently disturbed earth.”

I didn’t get why the ground search team were doing those last things, but it didn’t matter. “They’re wasting their time.”

“Make a note, Ferris,” Esposito said. “Parent tried to discourage ground search… and we can guess why, can’t we?” He scowled at me. “All this time you’ve known exactly where your child is, haven’t you?”

“No. Not exactly…” How to explain that I’d teleported directly into the same room as Aleksi, but I’d never stepped outside the room and had no clue where it might be?

Esposito looked disgusted. “I’ve heard of women like you, women who faked a crime against their own child to get attention. What did you want? A chance to go on national television with an impassioned plea for the return of your beloved infant? For your information, Mrs. Lensky, falsely reporting a crime can be charged as a felony, and I plan to recommend that charge in this case. I just hope, for your baby’s sake, that the D.A. doesn’t have to charge you with anything worse. The ground team will definitely continue their search, though I’m calling off the other officers as of now.”

He stormed out of the break room, leaving the sketch artist to pack up the laptop and follow him. “I don’t understand.”

“What don’t you get?” Ferris demanded. “You report the kid missing, then you tell us you’ve seen him at the same time the report was made.”

I should have tried to explain Brouwer teleportation. Or, at least, demonstrated it. I might have been able to slow down Esposito’s headlong rush to judgment.

Other things, though, were confusing me now, tangling up my thoughts. “I don’t get… If he thinks I’m lying, why is he having the ground team continue searching?”

“Because in a very high percentage of infant abductions,” Ferris informed me, “the child’s body is found within a mile of the home.” He paused. “The percentage is even higher in cases where one or both parents is faking an abduction for reasons of their own. What really happened, Mrs. Lensky? Did you shake the baby too hard?”

“I’ve never—I wouldn’t—” A cold anger began to take the place of grief and fear.

“We will be interviewing your friends and family members,” said Ferris. “One at a time, so they can’t coordinate their stories. If there’s a pattern of child abuse, Mrs. Lensky, it will come out. Want me to get Detective Esposito back in here? It will go better for you if you confess now, without wasting more of our time.”

1 comment:

  1. Gee, why do I suspect some officer or detective is about to get a sudden very nasty jolt and no sympathy at all?


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