Authors: Harry Glum
CORPSE IN THE CAMPUS
Translated by J. Whitten
“CORPSE IN THE CAMPUS”
Written By Harry Glum
Copyright © 2015 Harry Glum
All rights reserved
Distributed by Babelcube, Inc.
Translated by J. Whitten
“Babelcube Books” and “Babelcube” are trademarks of Babelcube Inc.
CADAVER ON THE CAMPUS
arry Glum, 2015
All rights reserved
This is a story based on true events. For reasons of confidentiality, names of the persons involved as well as places and most of the dialogues are fictional recreations. Dates have also been altered, as well as some of the minor details having to do with the investigation.
he lifeless body of young Sarah Brown was found on Saturday morning, March 8th by a search party made up of university students from Northern Iowa and volunteer neighbors who were lending a helping hand. Several groups had been formed, each of which was directed by a Cedar Falls local police agent, and one of them had not taken long to find the body.
Sarah Brown was lying amid some trees which were located in the south area of the campus, very near the Hillside student apartments and Jennings Drive. She seemed to be resting face up. If she had not been a cadaver, the scene would have seemed ideal: a beautiful blonde young girl with light colored eyes that is lying on the grass and looking up at the sky through the treetops on a cloudless winter morning.
The body didn´t seem to show any signs of violence or struggle, and it seemed as if it had been carried to where it had been found, and carefully placed upon the frosted grass. However, a small caliber bullet hole in her left temple, from which there oozed a tiny stream of dried blood, indicated that the scene was not that of relaxed dreaming; on the contrary, it was the scene of a horrible crime.
A coroner was intent on getting all possible photographs of the cadaver and from all possible angles and imaginable distances. This he was doing in the kind of cold manner of those who are accustomed to this kind of work. Gordon Stevens, a Black Hawk County Sheriff´s Office detective located in the nearby town of Waterloo was contemplating the scene thoughtfully thus avoiding having to see Sarah Brown´s open eyes again. He was not accustomed to a crime this horrible and felt his stomach turning, and pains like a punch in the stomach. Who could have done this? Waterloo, Cedar Falls, all of damn Black County was a peaceful place where the worst that could happen to you was a stolen bicycle because you had forgotten to leave a padlock on it when you parked it in front of the supermarket, thought the detective with frustration.
—How´s it going? —Karen asked him, a fellow local police agent, with whom he had been in several training courses.
Brown whirled suddenly, since he had now been torn from his meditation and he had almost forgotten where he was.
—Ah, Karen, it´s you. I´m sorry. I hadn´t seen you...
—Have I frightened you?
—Well, I don´t know. I think that since I have arrived here I am a little terrified.
The detective directed his eyes towards the police line surrounding the area. Next to the yellow police ribbon there were some press photographers, neighbors and a good group of students, some of which were crying uncontrollably and hugging each other.
—Yes, it is incredible.
—Could it be a suicide? —asked Karen with a slight stutter.
—I doubt it. It´s the left temple, there´s no trace of the gun, and it seems that the body has been brought here. We don´t know yet if she was left handed, or if some criminal has taken the gun, or even if however incredible it may seem she had stayed in that position after having her brains blown out.
—Calm down, Gordon.
—I´m not calm, Karen, I´m sorry. And something tells me that the person that did this has not only destroyed this person´s life, with all of her future before her, but has also screwed all of us forever.
arah Brown was seen alive the last time on Thursday, March 6th. She had agreed to go shopping in Waterloo with her two best friends, Belinda Myers and Carol Weight. All three had known each other for years, and they were all from Sheldon, a town some 200 miles from Cedar Falls and had been together in high school.
Sarah accompanied Carol to the Prime Falls student apartments´ parking lot, where the three friends lived, but she apologized asking them to wait a moment for her saying that she had forgotten her purse in her room. Carol waited in her car until Belinda appeared. She had arrived fifteen minutes late. After waiting for half an hour, both thought that it had been too long and that Sarah had probably run into some friend, or her boyfriend, Mark Walton, who was also from Sheldon and who also was a student in the same university, since he had a sports scholarship; so they decided to leave without her and go ahead with their plans.
When Belinda and Carol returned that night to Prime Falls apartments they found out that nobody had had any news from Sarah, not even her boyfriend Mark. Everybody else had been thinking that she had been with her friends, having a good time in Waterloo. Immediately, all the alarms went off, and a search was undertaken at the apartments and areas visited most frequently on the campus; but to no avail.
Desperately, friends phoned Sarah´s parents, who were still living in Sheldon, and they found out that they had not talked to Sarah since early that Thursday morning, when she had called to tell them about her plans for the day. Without a moment´s thought, her parents jumped in the car and arrived late that night at the local police station in Cedar Falls to report her missing.
The police informed family members that since she was over 18 years of age, a search could not be initiated until after at least 24 hours of her missing. Therefore, they and some of Sarah´s friends organized a search which they held until the early Friday morning hours on the campus. They had no result. It seemed that the earth itself had swallowed her up.
Halfway through the day on Friday, March 7th, the local police was able to start an investigation on Sarah´s disappearance. They interviewed her two best friends, Belinda and Carol, and her boyfriend Mark. They also interrogated other students residing in Prime Falls apartments seeking some witness or evidence that should guide the direction the investigation should take. Unfortunately, everybody seemed to say that they hadn´t seen her since the previous day in the morning, and that nobody had seen her since then at any point of the campus.
Around mid afternoon on Friday, the local police and a psychologist had had a long conversation with Sarah Brown´s parents seeking to get to know the missing student´s character more in depth plus her own personal situation. She seemed to be an average girl, a good student, sportsperson, and with a boyfriend she had been with for a few years, and she also dedicated her weekends to charity work. She had never before disappeared, and had always had a close relationship with her parents, whom she usually called twice a day, and visited at least once monthly. She didn´t take drugs, nor did she get into any trouble. For them it seemed absolutely impossible for her to have disappeared of her own free will. Somebody must have kidnapped her and must be holding her somewhere.
Late on Friday evening, the local police chief had a clear idea about two things: that he should seek the county sheriff´s office´s help and that Sarah Brown would probably be found dead sooner or later.
On Saturday morning March 8th, several search parties were organized. Each one of them was made up of a local police agent, a handful of students, and some Cedar Falls residents that had heard about the case and that had come voluntarily. People were very nervous, and everyone was already imagining the worst.
Not long before the middle of the day, the group led by policewoman Karen Phillips stumbled on Sarah Brown´s dead body. It was at the center of a few trees, located at the end of the southern portion of the university campus. She was totally dressed and lying face upwards with her eyes open. One could see clearly a hole streaming with blood in her left temple.
The area was immediately cordoned off, and the county sheriff was informed. He assigned a detective to the case.
Detective Gordon Stevens had just mentally reviewed all the essential points of the police report that Karen had prepared, and that would make up the base for the report that he himself would have to draw up later.
He sighed with relief, almost a sort of a snort as he loosened up his tie knot. The sun was already setting over Waterloo, and at that time on a Saturday, the Sheriff´s office was usually halfway empty. He peered through the narrow window in his office and he wished that that damn row of buildings would be removed so that he could once again have that beautiful view of the majestic beauty of the banks of the Cedar River. He thought of young Sarah´s parents and about their strife stricken faces as they had been questioned. Maybe he was just another modest detective of a small city lost in the middle of the United States, but heaven well knew that he was going to do everything possible to find out who the devil had killed Sarah Brown.
he small meeting room in the Cedar Falls local police department was packed with people. Gordon Stevens and the local police chief, Patrick Thomas was trying to keep order and start the information session. Everyone was very nervous.
—Okay, guys, I understand that this situation is overwhelming, because I am feeling the same as you —started out Thomas —, but we should be able to deal with the situation. I have summoned you here so that we can share all the information we have at the moment, and so that we can get to know each other. Deductive Gordon Stevens, with which many of you have dealt and even been classmates, has come from the sheriff’s office to lend us a helping hand.
Suddenly there was silence. All the people that the chief of police had considered that were adequate to form the main work team for the Sarah Brown case were congregated there: eight agents, among whom were Karen Phillips, another to investigate, and also Patrick and Gordon.
—Thanks —mumbled Stevens, taking the floor— the first thing I want to tell you is that I am as broken down and distraught as you are. After all, Waterloo and Cedar Falls are practically one city, and I myself studied in the University of Northern Iowa; therefore it is as if the person killed were my companion or neighbor. I already know many of you and it is an honor to be a part of this fabulous human team. We are having to face a terrible incident, which fortunately we are not accustomed to, and I know that you are going to give the best you have to clear up this horrible crime. You are going to give up your own hours of sleep, and time with your families. However, I consider that above all is the purpose of restoring confidence and calm to our community, and that is what we will not have until we solve this case.
The local police chief came up to a wall where there was a plastic blackboard and a cork bulletin board pannel running from the ceiling to the floor.
—In order to get organized here, we are going to set up a copy of all the evidence and proof that we have obtained during the investigation. There are already a couple of reports, some photographs of the victim, and a campus map on which the place where the body was found has been marked, and the apartments where they lived, and where she has been seen for the last time.