Peace

 

Some have gone to Hell and back to find themselves. I survived the journey and I’m stronger because of it. In this Place and Time I am the best Me I have ever been…

I write in the voice of who I was and not the person I am today. Many of you will feel empathy, sympathy and pain for my words. Try not to. Feel for the victims, their lives and deaths matter.

I am honored to have lived the intense life I have. I have defended those that couldn’t defend themselves. I stood shoulder to shoulder with my Brothers. People have risked their lives for me and I for them. I lived in a violent World where your reputation was everything. Truth mattered.

How many get a chance to live in this World?

My Definition of Peace

Mine is a “Peace of Mind” and not some numb disconnected thing. I did not find this Peace by sitting on a black cushion in some dark room making weird noises. I found it within me. I am a hillbilly Buddha having discovered my own enlightenment. I don’t want to be Tom Cruise or an NBA star. I love being me and being a part of the life I create around me.

I found my Peace in the Deserts and Mountains of Utah and Nevada years ago. Back then I lived wild with only my dogs. I avoided all human contact and rode into the backwater towns for supplies under the cover of darkness. I began to find ways to heal myself.

Everyday I stood in a steep walled canyon screaming “WHY” until I could scream no more and “WHY” didn’t matter.

I wrote everything I could remember that haunted me. The deaths, the bodies, the betrayals. The failures, the near misses, the luck, the survivor guilt. Every night I would burn it all and start over the next morning. I pounded my fists into the red dirt and howled into the night like the wounded Animal I was. I learned how to forget – how to forgive – how to find a place for my Memories. I was troubled by my past and found my own way through it. I learned to look inward to find what caused me to react to the World in the ways that I did.

For me it started with rage. When I had my career I had explosive fits of rage. The rage had a home in me and served me well in the fights but when the career was over I didn’t want to lose control of my mind anymore. I waited and watched. As a new rage would build in me I would do my best to sense every aspect of it. To smell, feel, taste it. To feel it building. Once I was familiar with the beginning of my Rage I waited for it and visualized putting a trash can lid over it. I tried and failed many, many times to stop it.

Then one day I was able to stop my rage. In that moment I was changed forever. For the first time in my life I felt the reins of my mind in my hands. I was in control and things have been better ever since. I have shared this technique with others who have been effected by PTSD and it has been helpful for some of them. I have not experienced an explosive fit of rage since that day. I learned to take control of other parts of my mind that I didn’t like to. Fewer things bothered me.

This is the Peace I speak of. A Peace of knowing oneself. Of being able to look inward and control what causes you pain or pleasure. To not be troubled, to know what makes you tick.

This is the Peace I’ve found

Michael of the Distant Mountains

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Tomb of the unknown Child

I have mixed feeling about this post.  I feel that I might be disgracing the memory of this child by telling of her death.  But if some further good might come from it then should I post these words?

This is my Tomb of the Unknown Child.

A lifetime ago…


 
I was on the afternoon shift working 4 pm till midnight.  I had enough time on the job to be considered “Senior Deputy”.  After about 5 years you start to earn your pay, until then its all a learning curve.  I had a rookie with me, just fresh from the police academy.  I had seen his type before, a lifelong dream to be a Police Officer.  Bright eyed and bushy tailed and he didn’t know shit from Shine-ola.  Some make it but many don’t, always hard to predict the winners from the losers.  I thought picking a career path at 5 years old was akin to setting a trap in one‘s future, often hard to un-spring.

People should be careful what they wish for.  Before the shift would end this Recruit would be doubting his choice.

Fall in the Midwest can be and often is brutal.  This was one of those days.  A harsh freeze with blowing snow had jumped us.  Wind that bites, pockets of blinding white, every footstep squeaks like rusty nails being pulled from old wood.  Winter has arrived with the power and fury of a rock slide.  A lifeless day when no wild thing would move without reason.

The sky was grey blue as we loaded the cruiser.  I stowed my 12 gauge under the leading edge of the front seat.  I blip the siren and test the overhear light.  Two bulbs under a canopy of blue plastic make their slow rotation and that low whir-whir-whir sound as the rubber belt twisted its never ending course.  The take-down spots on either side lit our trunks as we transferred gear.  Finally I checked the medical kit, a green ammo box full of Korean War era bandages.  All neatly arranged (but slightly yellowing) grey boxes, each wrapped in crisp cellophane.  When opened you would find a white bandage wound as tight as a chunk of wood.  Cartoon images on the package told which bandage was for what injury. Government cost cutting run amuck.

“Lights, camera, action” I called out to the recruit, “Mount up little brother”.  Into the night, into the gathering storm, into another nightmare we drive.  Lives would be changed and lost.  Things would forever be different for all of us.  I can’t remember who I was before this day.

I knew that we were in for a shitload of accidents and I needed to serve a subpoena outside of my patrol area.  I cleared it with dispatch and headed for the address, which was in a rural farming community.  A small town that didn’t grow beyond it’s initial footprint in the slow twitch of the past 150 years.  A four corner town with mammoth oaks down both streets converging at the blinking yellow light.  A beer store and a couple of old Churches.  Two lanes of blacktop intersecting at 90 degree angles.  A checkerboard land split into squares by wire and post.  A flat place of cornfield stubble and harrow scars, tinged white by the snow swept out to the distant horizon.

The wind hissed against the wire.

We pull into our destination after a 30 minute ride.  The car door yanked against my hand as I opened it.  I tag the witness with the subpoena and jump back into the warmth of the always running cruiser.  I told the rookie to call us back in service and returning to our area of patrol.  As he did the dispatcher asked if we could check the status of an “unknown accident” not far from our location.

As I approach the yellow light intersection I expect to see mangled automobiles, as these sort of crossroads were notoriously bad for T Bone crashes and they always spread out like a hillbilly yard sale.  Instead I find nothing.  I’m just about to grab the mike and tell dispatch the call was unfounded when I noticed lumps in the road.  I turn the car and my headlights lit this stage of horror.

“Those are people” I scream at the now wider eyed and more confused rookie.

“Fuck“, I say to nobody in particular.  I can see a car up ahead, on the right shoulder, beyond the carnage.  I thumb the trunk release and grab the medical kit and yell at the rookie to re-position the patrol car to close the road, start popping flares and get us some firefighters or EMT out here pronto.

I would again like to point out that I have all the respect in the world for the emergency medical personnel who experience these situations on a daily basis.  I have no idea how they do it.  I worked in a city and could rely on a quick response from either the fire department or ambulance, or better described, people with medical training that far outweighed mine.

That would not be the case this night.  As our situation worsened so did the weather and road conditions.  The radio called out a cascade of bad accidents with confirmed injuries.  Dispatch had even pulled the Sergeant out of the office to handle calls.

I hear the rookie call for help and by then we both knew we had serious injuries.  I was about to find out how bad.

I can remember the finest detail of the next few moments of my life and the ending of another.  This is a memory that will never leave me.  At times it is almost visible, like a scar.  I have learned to live with it.  It is part of me.

The rotating blue beacon froze falling snow in time and space like jewels in the dimming light.  I start to take notice of a woman screaming.  The screams come from the car on the side of the road.  I can just see her rocking back and forth behind the wheel.  She is screaming, not words but something more like the sounds of a wounded animal, all throaty and dark, guttural.  Her screams are muffled by the windows that slowly fog over.  A crimson red spider web spreads out from the center of the windshield.

Groans and moans, more animal sounds at my feet.

The father is conscious but completely overtaken by shock.  He has suffered an exposed compound fracture of his femur, or upper leg bone.  I’m surprised as there is little bleeding.  I know that shock has removed his ability to feel the pain.  He drags himself on the ground, like a dog that had been hit.  I looked at my med kit and this injured human and thought, I haven’t got anything in here that will fix that, and walked towards the next victim.

I took a quick look over my shoulder and noted the rookie was back in the cruiser.  I think he was suddenly re-evaluating his career choice.

Hello Mom.  This family had been crossing the street together when they were struck by the screaming woman.  Mom was lucky, she lost her arm, mangled at the elbow.  I do have a bandage for that but she isn’t bleeding too bad either and I’ve got another victim that isn’t moving.  Sorry Mom, gotta go.

“Oh no, little princess” I mumble.  This final victim is a little girl child about the age of my daughter.  I don’t know her name but I have thought of her every day for 20 years now.  She was dressed for Church but now sprawled on the frozen asphalt, a marionette puppet with her strings cut, bright white against the swirling darkness of the road.  I knelt beside her and listened to her breathing, guppy breaths, I know she is hurt bad.  I scoop her head off the ground with my hand and feel broken skull.  I breathed into this child and begged her to live.  I screamed at her to breathe.  I wish I was anywhere but here.  Please live beautiful child.

After what seemed like hours I hear the wail of the approaching fire truck.  I check this child for signs of life.  The guppy breaths are gone.  Her eyes are black pools of emptiness.  I know she died in my hands.  I have failed.  The woman still screams in the distance, I feel like joining her.

A firefighter took over for me.  I stumbled towards the ditch and toss my medical kit down the slope.  I sat on the edge and fished out a Marlboro and lighter.  At that time I smoked 3 packs a day, if it wasn’t bowling night.  Try as I might I couldn’t get my Bic to flick.  I look down and see a blood soaked cigarette and lighter in my hands.  I laugh and drop them both.  Behind me and around me was all the help I could use.  I was trying to muster the strength to stand when a State Trooper tapped me on the shoulder, “You alright Bro” he asked.  I shook my head and said, “No”.  He said, “I’ll take this case, go home”.

This friend of mine and fellow officer relieved me from this nightmare, I still owe him for that.  I drove the rookie to the station and radioed the Sergeant that I was going 10-7 (out of service).  He didn’t ask any questions.  I didn’t have any answers.

NOTE: I don’t write these vignettes of my experiences to gain your sympathy or praise. I write, this was my life, if I worked for the Circus I‘m sure it would be lighter fare. Feel compassion for these victims, these destroyed families. I was paid well for the job and always knew what I might have to do.

I couldn’t imagine being anything but the Police after I discovered life inside the tape.

I have no regrets.

Rat734

 


© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Recruits

When I trained Recruits at the Sheriff’s department I would make this request of them.  Before we began I had them bring me a photograph of themselves.  I told them to make it one that showed their likes, who they were.

Once I had my hands on this photograph I would have a very serious conversation with this new recruit.  The words went something like this.

“I will teach you to be the big bad ass police, how to drive fast – kick ass and carry a gun but you have to make a promise to me now”.

“When this ride is over be it a year or a career you will TRY to go back to this person (pointing at photograph).  You WILL be changed by this.  You will become hard, suspicious and mean in some ways.  Always remember who you were”.

I would then tuck the photograph in their breast pocket and tell them to always keep it there as a reminder of this promise.

I have spent years searching for myself.  These writings are part of my journey.

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Bad day for Frank

Frank was my mentor and he is a Brother of mine.  He is a fire plug of a man who served as a submariner before becoming a Cop.  We experienced much together.  After my first 3 years on road patrol I was promoted to Detective.  It was there and then that Frank and I formed a bond that endures to this day.  It was Frank that taught me the art of the Interview.  He taught me the guilt that consumes some men wants to get out.  You have to create a way for it to happen.  No matter how horrible or disgusting the crime you will have to “understand”.
 
During the interrogation of a pedophile I have said something like this, “Look I understand how this happened.  Your niece was bouncing around on your lap and your dick got hard, you wouldn’t be a man if it didn’t”.

The hook was set.  He thinks I’ll understand his particular perversion.  It all makes me sick to my stomach to think about it now.

The confessions were worth the price.

I digress. I started writing about a bad day for Frank…

Frank and I were on the Hostage Negotiations Team or HNT together.  Frank was a seasoned veteran of the Department with a varied background.  His primary assignment was Polygraph operator.  He conducted two interviews each day.

We were both on call for any HNT call outs.  Most of them went something like this.

A drunk gets pissed because his neighbor’s dog won’t quit shitting in his petunias.  The drunk blast the neighbor’s dog in half with a shotgun while it’s hunkered up.  The police get called and the place is surrounded.  The drunk takes a pot shot out the window.  SWAT and HNT make the scene.  Most times, after hours and some sobering up, the perp would surrender.

Well, that’s the way it worked most often.

In the “Old Days” things were done differently.  Now negotiations rarely take place face to face.

Decades ago Frank was called out on this job.  A Vietnam veteran had returned home and had trouble adjusting to his reclaimed life.  He drank too much.  He was pissed off at the VA for not giving him the meds he thought he needed.  Then he got arrested.  Then he got a bad case of cancer.  Then his wife left him, taking his daughter with her.  Then she sent the Sheriff’s Office out to check his well being.  Then he barricaded himself with a shotgun under his chin.

Frank entered the residence and did a face to face with this desperate human being.  His name was Frank too.  He sat on the end of the bed with the shotgun between his bony knees.  Only once, over the next 2 hours, did he make eye contact with Frank.

He spoke of Vietnam, of cancer, of his daughter.  He howled out in real emotional pain.  Frank listened and tried his best to reach out but he knew he wasn’t getting through.  Frank had real problems without solutions.

Frank of Vietnam began to cry.  He wanted his daughter to get his death benefit and life insurance payments.  He knew that if he committed suicide that would not happen.  It would be one of the last things he cared about.  His love for his daughter was powerful.

SWAT had the place surrounded.  Vietnam Frank said he was done talking and he told Frank to leave the room.  Frank begged him over and over not to do it.

“You don’t want to witness this” said the man of short time.

“I can’t leave” said Frank.

For the first time Vietnam Frank looked Frank right in the eye…

“Sorry Bro” – BOOM

In that moment Frank was changed forever.

Frank would pay another price.  He told everyone Vietnam Frank had leaned over to reach his coffee cup and the shotgun accidentally discharged.

Everyone knew he lied.

A dead man’s wish was fulfilled.

Justice is sometimes strange.

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Crackhead Red

I worked as an undercover narcotics officer for years.  I was loaned out to the Michigan State Police.  These years were some of the most intense and enjoyable of my career.  I was part of a Buy Bust street crew, the Crack Attack Team (CAT).  We targeted gangs that sold crack cocaine on street corners and their dope houses.  There were lots of cold hits, drive-ups and controlled purchases.  We banged our own doors (made our own Search Warrant drug house entries) – sometimes three a day.  We conducted Trojan Horse Operations – We assisted other departments with everything from surveillance to busting hookers – Everything was fucking funny.

This happened then…

CRACKHEAD RED

My throat was dry and every muscle tight as I shut off the ignition.  I gulped the last of the 40 ouncer and shoved the empty under the seat.  I could feel the tape of the wire pull against my chest as I rolled out of the beater.  I could feel the heat of the transmitter taped to my back.  Under my breath and into the wire I muttered “Fuck you Flash” just to let him know I still loved him.

My brothers would cover my ass yet again.

This was my first undercover narcotics purchase since being loaned out to the State Police. “Rolex”, the paid informant, knew the crack slinger as “Red” and that he was out of Detroit and twitchy.  Red had based his one man operation out of a Michigan Avenue flop motel.

There would be no intros on this one.  My best and only plan was to walk up to the door and knock.  What happen from there was the great unknown…

FOUR HOURS EARLIER:

Shamu was on the ram and I was third through the door.  Festus was right in front of me, my hand on his shoulder. The door exploded into wood splinters and shrapnel.  Rebel lets loose with a War Cry.

Into another crack house with extreme force and determination we go.

Shouts of “State Police, Search Warrant“ and “Get down” fill the air.

ONE HOUR EARLIER:

I dump my raid gear at the O and get ready for the cold deal with Red.  Rebel is in the bathroom with me, helping tape the transmitter to my body.  He cracks one joke after another throughout this dance of ours.  Him with the tape and jokes, me with my pants around my ankles.  He reminds me to get a 40 ouncer of State Police purchased beer for the ride.  Rebel’s jokes ease the tension as always.

In his deep southern drawl Rebel whispers into my ear, “Ya know we’re gonna have to quit meeting like this”.

We test the wire before leaving the O.

RED:

I pound on the door and notice the matching rhythms of my beating heart.  Red answers.

Red has reason to be twitchy.  He has moved into the territory of others and set up shop.  He pays tribute to no man.  He is an independent owner/operator.  I can tell he deals to feed his habit which, from the looks at him, must be a monster.  He is a man that hasn’t slept in days and knows his run is coming to an end.

Passed out in the bed, face down, was a $20 crack whore I’d arrested many times before.

“What the fuck you want”?

“Crack motherfucker, what the fuck you think I want”.  That seemed to piss him off but his hunger for money to feed his hunger for Crack took over.

“How much you want”?

Well it turned out that Red was fresh out of Crack but he knew where we could score some “right around the corner”.  My plan evolves to include a walk to a crack house with my newest best bud Red.  Off we go.  I can feel the transmitter riding up my back.

I figure that between the wire and the surveillance team somebody might stand a chance of figuring out the newest plan.

So we walk into a rundown neighborhood just off of Michigan Avenue.  Most of the homes were two stories and split into rentals.  I notice Festus drive by and feel better about the plan, or lack thereof.

Boom, Red makes a right turn into a backyard and we’re up the stairs and pounding on the door of this newest target.  I had an uneasy feeling that the surveillance team might have missed my sudden change of direction.  I would learn later that my suspicion was right, the team knew I was in one of three houses but that was the best they had.  I didn’t see any address as the door opened. Inside Red and I go.

This newest shit head then did something that sent the hairs on my neck rising.  He barricaded the door with a 4X4 timber.  Not only did the team not know where I was but if they did they weren’t getting in without a tank.  On top of that the transmitter was in and out.

Fuck me, stay cool.

So Red and shit head go into the kitchen leaving me with the babies and the babies momma.  Well it turned out that shit head is fresh out of Crack too but he knew somebody that could bring some right over.  The plan evolves again.

So there I am for the next 90 minutes sitting in a upstairs loft looking out the window watching Sesame Street with the kids and the crack heads.

Finally the crack dealer shows up.  He takes one look at me and “No fucking way am I selling to homie.  He looks like a fucking cop”.  Red, my newest best friend, then starts lying his ass off telling the dealer he had known me since we were babies and how his daddy use to fuck my momma.  Too fucking funny.

The deal(s) go down and the dealer immediately leaves.  Red and shit head and the babies momma all start pinching my bag.  I start bitching, grab what’s left and head for the barricaded door.  My new best friend Red didn’t even say goodbye.

Out the door I go into immediate Chaos.

Shamu comes flying up asking where the hell I’d been.  He fills me in on the intermittent wire issue and the Team not knowing where I went.  About then Red comes out higher that hell from his just smoked rock.  Rebel and another Team member chased him down and tackled him head first into the neighbor’s rose bushes.  I see them dragging him back out right the way he went in.  He resembles a bobcat attack victim.  One down.

I look down the street and see two of the surveillance vehicles have pinched the dealer’s vehicle against the curb.  Flash is pointing guns and screaming orders.  Two down.

Neighbors start to come out of their homes.

I hear sirens in the distance fast approaching our location.

I look at Shamu and say “I think we’ve caused enough damage here, our work is done”.  He belly laughs and I load up with him as he takes me back to the flop and my beater.

TWO HOURS LATER:

There is a tradition within undercover circles that goes something like this.  When you “Get your cherry popped” you pick up the bar bill for the whole team.

Not only was my team bellied up at the nearest bar but two other crews showed up along with the big boss.  We broke bread, laughed and relived the funniest parts of the day.

Popcorn, one of my bosses, leaned over and asked “So how does it feel to buy drugs for the first time”?  I chuckled and said “Popcorn that wasn’t the first time I bought drugs.  That was the just first time I bought drugs for the State Police”…

12 HOURS LATER:

Log evidence and write numerous arrest reports and get ready for the next deal or door.

PHOTO:

Me – Then. That’s a uniform you can’t take off.  I was shooting for the Charlie Manson look.  I got profiled by other Cops more than once and often followed by security while shopping.  Family events were interesting.

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

A solution

A quick funny one…

I was riding midnight shift and had a partner that dozed off all the time.  This was pissing me off and I needed a solution.

I waited until he was nice and zonked out.  I eased the patrol car down the boat ramp.  I drove in as deep as I dared.  I thumb on the overhead lights hit the siren and scream “GUN”.

As expected Sleepy busts his door open and rolls out. The plan worked to perfection.

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Timothy

I had some difficult assignments

It was my job to search for the lifeless bodies of the young, hidden in the murky depths, or under layers of ice.  I would cling to the triangle we had carved in the ice, suspended at the moment of courage, the edges of life.  A rescue diver already suited up next to me.  The time has come to push my body under the ice and search for the beloved and recently missing.

Focus only on tactics and training.  The fear would come later, sometimes in the middle of the night.

I was on a team of SCUBA divers responsible for Search and Rescue (USRT).  Over the years I dove most of the lakes and rivers in the County.  I searched for bodies, cars, weapons and other items of evidence.

The children were the hardest.  A family would have their world torn to the bone in the missing minute and the question, “Where’s Timothy”, and the slow sting of panic settles in.  Each moment more frantic than the previous.

I was part of the blur of sirens and uniforms, but I was different from the rest.  It was my job to go in the water and search for Timothy.  As I suited up it was my eyes that you would ask your questions and pin your slim hopes on.  Mother’s eyes brimming with tears, trembling lips mouthing mournful pleas. Terror has arrived.

Most often we would find their missing loved one in hours.  Sometimes it was after days of diving.  Swimming underwater with a rope in tow in wide sweeping arcs.  Covering every inch, to shove my hands into the cold mud, like oatmeal.  I could rarely see, happy to sneak an occasional clear view of my dive console.  Always finding the missing by touch rather than sight.

The startling terror of finding a fellow human so dreadfully out of place.  It was always cold and dark.  Just a touch of gravity as we danced on the lake bottom.

Timothy is right here, 40 feet under the ice.

I tug the line and get the free lift to the surface with this lifeless child clutched to my chest.  I pass him through the hole to the awaiting hands of the real life savers (and a job I could never do) the EMS EMT guys.

I hear the screams of a mother…

These experiences aren’t unique to me.  Some Officer, Deputy or Trooper did these same things today, many witnessed much worse.

Maybe someone else needs to know that we can survive the past and live in this day.

 

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

The Nightmares of Others

I walked in the nightmares of others.

I wake in the night eyes wide open.  The echoes of a scream bounce around the dark room.  The scream fades to nothingness.  My heart thumps the inside of my ribcage like a panic crazed rabbit trapped in wire.  I gasp in a full breath, which seems like my first.  Every muscle has fired.  What just happened?  I feel beaten, I remember…

I was training another rookie.  This was a crack infested gang neighborhood and I was on the prowl for my favorite prey, gang bangers with guns.  It was early enough that the zombies of the night hadn’t risen yet, hadn’t had their first red pop.  The sun was just setting.

The radio barked our call sign and sent us into my continuing nightmare.  A neighbor was reporting the sounds of a child crying, possible child abuse.

I rolled a couple of traffic stops on the way, hoping to snag a warrant arrest.  I had responded to this type of call many times in the past.  Most often some kid got his rear end smacked for some good reason and was still trying out the high notes on his vocal cords.

We stopped a couple of houses short and walked towards the flat ranch.  We assumed the customary positions on either side of the door.  I rapped the aluminum screen door hard with my streamlite.

I always wanted people to know that it was the Police or your worst nightmare (or sometimes both) knocking.  No time for confusion.

No one answered.  I was sure I had the right address and thought I heard the muffled sound of a child from a front bedroom.  Suddenly the inside lights went dark. Strike One, something isn’t right.  I bang harder and shout “Sheriff’s Office, open the door”.  No answer, I hear the kids again.  I step off the porch and hoist myself up to one of those high sideways windows.  The bedroom is dark, I can just see a couple of small children huddled in the corner.  I shout into the bedroom and tell the kids it’s the Police and to come open the door.  A dark figure shot from the room into the hallway.  I expected the door to open….

Nothing

I looked in the window again and a whispered voice said, “Momma won’t let me”.  Strike Two.  The hairs on my neck rose like a wild dog.  Adrenaline began its familiar course, slam the heart and spike the brain.  I am alive and ready for anything.

Time for a plan.  I quickly explain to the rookie that I was going to give the door a couple of kicks, hoping to convince whoever was inside to let us in.  If not I had already decided I had enough to take the door down.

Again I called out “Sheriff” as I placed my 11 ½ squarely into the lock.  The first kick loosened everything up nicely, I went to shoulder it the rest of the way when suddenly the door flew opened and I spilled into the darkness.

The rookie was right with me.  A quick scan revealed only the mother present in the front of the house.  I told the rookie to stay put while I checked on the kids…

I have witness horror many times in my life.  Most often its one idiot against another.  Violence inflicted upon the innocent is absolute horror.

I walked down the hall into the confining darkness, what was that smell?  I opened the door and met my victims, all three of them.  The oldest was a child of 7, standing guard over her two younger brothers, the youngest still in diapers.

My eyes adjusted to the darkness while my hand searched for the light switch.  There was nothing in the room but a mattress and the kids.  Why do they look wet?

Pop goes the light.  A new nightmare begins to chisel itself into my gray pudding.  Is this Elm Street?  The bitch had beaten these children, all three of them.  Streaks of blood run from the walls.  Railroad tracks of misery are etched into their naked bodies.  Their skin glistened with dark blood. They were shaking like dogs. I screamed out some obscenity.

Strike Three.

My eyes fell upon the she bitches tool of terror, a 2 inch leather strap with a big silver buckle.  I made one full wrap around my fist, leaving the buckle dangling, and headed back down the hall.  The bitch saw the rage in my eyes as I neared her.  She knew what I had witnessed, she knew what she had done.  The rookie was dumbfounded as I charged with murderous intent.  He blocked my way and screamed my name.  He saw the blood on my hands and uniform. “What did she do”, he begged over and over.

I swung the belt once and didn’t make contact.  As I drew back for another try I saw the stomach of the she bitch, stretched to its outer limits with her next intended victim, like some over ripe pumpkin.

Suddenly my zeal for the task at hand waned.  Some gears in the back of my mind stripped themselves.  Somehow beating the dog shit out of this pregnant she bitch didn’t seem like it solved much.

I told the rookie to call it in and I went back to the bedroom.

I sat on the floor next to my huddled victims.  The oldest daughter hugged my neck and whispered, “It will be alright”.  I cried and hoped she was right.  As I sat with this child, awaiting her ambulance, it was she that comforted me.  She was the bravest person in that house of horrors.  I was humbled by her courage.

It was she that lived this nightmare.  This was her life, I was just passing through.  She had become the Mother and protector of her small brothers, living their days in confusion and pain.

I realized that in her short life she had experienced more agony and torment than I had in a career of Law Enforcement.

Ambulances, Detectives, Sergeants find us important. The wheels start to turn.

I go to the hospital and I thank my rookie on the way.  Once in the ER I interviewed my victims.  I asked, what did you eat for breakfast and they said “Hotdogs and eggs”.  I asked what they had for dinner and they said, “Hotdogs and eggs”.  I asked, “what else do you ever eat” and their immediate reply was “what else is there”?

That is what I smelled, burnt hotdogs and eggs.  I hate that smell to this day.

The she bitch was slightly crazy and had isolated the kids for years.  There had been no outside contact with anyone and no school for the oldest. They had lived their lives locked in that flat gray ranch house.

There would be no justice tonight.  The children were placed in Foster Care.  This is where most Cops lose the story.  The end, or what happens next, is rarely discovered.  This nightmare would have another ending.

A better ending.

Some months later, during the summer, I was on the hunt.  I heard a gunshot from a distance.  I raced towards an intersection where I thought the shot came from.  I pulled to the curb and turned off the scanner.  I thumbed the radio to main freq only and lowered the window.  I listened and waited.  I pulled on my leather gloves.

Out the window I see three kids coming my way.  A girl wearing a bright pink dress, which perfectly matched her pink bicycle.  Two young boys followed, one pulling the other in a red wagon.  They stopped on the sidewalk next to my car. I didn’t recognize them, still focused on the next moment.  They began to talk.  The middle brother said to the sister, “That’s him, that’s Deputy Mike”.  The girl stared into the car. I knew her in that instant.  We talked, we hugged.  They excitedly told me of living with “Auntie” and how Momma was getting better. I hoped so.

Gunfire erupted two blocks over.  I told them to get in the house and raced around the corner.

I never saw them again, or only in my dreams…

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

About Me

I was a Police Officer for 25 years.  I worked for a large Sheriff’s department and had a very successful career.  I received many awards, promotions and special assignments.  I was a Homicide Detective, a Hostage Negotiator and a Police diver.  I was awarded Law Enforcement Officer of the year, twice.  I received the Medal of Valor.  I ended my career as a 1st Lieutenant in charge of the largest district the Sheriff’s Office patrolled.

This is a collection of my life experiences.  I will also write about my personal journey to find myself after the career ended, of finding my Peace.

Thanks for visiting…

 

© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.