The robbery-homicide division at the downtown Central Community Police Station was unusually quiet for a Wednesday afternoon. Lyle and Steven were both on their computers, filling out witness reports regarding a homicide that had occurred two weeks before for which they had yet to focus on one viable suspect.
Lyle looked over the top of his computer and saw that Steven, sitting at his desk across from him, was intent on his typing. He used the two-finger system. It took him a while to get the information into the system. “Did you finish the garage guy’s report yet?”
After typing in one last sentence, Steven looked up. “Yeah, I’m wondering about the man in the blue jogging outfit who seemed in a big hurry to get gassed up. The way he kept his face turned away from the security camera is a major tell. Forensics got a partial license number and is narrowing down red 1989 Chevys with wrecked back bumpers.
Lyle’s phone rang and he picked it up. “Homicide, Sergeant Hirschberg.” He listened for a moment. “Hey, Loo, we don’t usually handle domestics. Crandall and Harris are on patrol in that area right now. Shouldn’t it be their call?” He looked over at Steven and waved his forefinger around in the air, nodding at the receiver. “Okay, we’ll take a ride over and see what’s going on. If it looks dicey, we’ll call in SWAT” He listened and made some notes on a pad “You got it.” He hung up, grabbed his Glock out of his drawer, holstered it, and started putting on his jacket that’d been hanging on the back of his chair.
Steven did the same. “What’s up? Why us?”
“You know that biker thug Ziggy Shriver who lives on Rosetta Street and who always gets in fights with his biker mama, Lori Lou?”
Steven followed Lyle out the door. “Yeah? Everybody knows he murdered his former partner in those liquor store holdups, but so far Lourdes and Messina haven’t been able to pin it on him.”
They were rushing down the hall as Steven double-checked his pockets for his gear. He felt a bump in his handkerchief pocket and smiled as he took out a Snicker’s bar before tucking it back in—Rosemaria. “So why us?” He asked again as they clambered down the stairs and out the door.
“One of their neighbors called it in. It seems as if this fight is even worse than the ones where they ended up in the front yard—lots of yelling and sounds of furniture falling over.”
They got to their car and Lyle opened the trunk. He tossed Steven’s vest at him, and they both strapped them on. Domestics could get ugly. Lyle continued, “You’re the only guy who’s ever been able to talk to that maniac, so they figured you can calm him down the way you did last time.” Steven hopped in behind the wheel, with Lyle riding shotgun. Steven pulled out into the street and headed west.
“He was half in the bag when we went there. Remember? He tried to take a swing at me and fell down. All I did was help him over to the couch, and he passed out. Then his wife attacked me with a rolled-up magazine and told me to mind my own freakin’ business.”
“The woman’s almost as big as he is.”
“Not quite. He’s about six four and two hundred eighty pounds. She’s barely five ten.”
“And grossly overweight. She’s still got some major moves though, according to Messina. When they went by to ask questions after the partner was found dead in a gully by the freeway, she landed a fist in Lourdes’s chest that knocked him against the wall.”
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