Chapter 37 – Horror

| Jun 5, 2023
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Bill and I had been married now for five months. Sara didn’t show up for work on Monday or Tuesday. She’s never done that before without contacting Donna or I somehow. I called her cell phone and Mrs. Craig, Sara’s mother, answered. I introduced myself and asked if Sara was okay?

“Mrs. Comings, Sara won’t be back for a while. She was assaulted and raped Saturday night!” I was stunned, putting my hand over my mouth, and had to sit down. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t want to hear details.

“Oh my God, what can I do to help? What can our company do to help her?”

She asked me if I knew and damned good attorneys.

“I’ll get our legal team to find one for you. Sure, I can’t help in any other way too?” I called Diane and told her. She, too, was shocked. She told me to put our legal team to work. Although they were mainly corporate and patent attorneys, they knew many people in the legal community and bar association.

I was still shaking and crying when Bill came home.

“Savannah, darling, what is wrong. Are you okay?” I told him about Sara and that I was supposed to help get a recommendation for an attorney.

“The district attorney should handle this. I know all of them, and they are great fighters in these types of cases. She is in great hands with them.”

I was bawling so hard my eyes were red and swollen, and I could barely see. Bill sat down next to me and held my shaking hand.

“I’m so sorry, Savannah. I know how much you care about her.”

“Bill, can you help her?’ “Please.”

“Savannah, I am a defense lawyer, not a prosecutor.”

“But you’re good. You’re damn good. Please. Please. Please. Please.”

Bill thought for a minute.

“Let me make some phone calls.” An hour later, it was already well after nine at night. Bill came in and said, “I talked to the district attorney. They seem not to like me since I win most cases against them, but we are all professional colleagues. They are already on her case. I volunteered to help them pro bono. And he agreed.” We’ll start tomorrow.” I still couldn’t see through my eyes. They were so puffed up; I was still shaking and hyperventilating and holding my heart. It was like I had a heart attack. Bill hugged me to try to calm me down.

“Oh, Bill, thank you. This means the world to Sara and her family, and me. I’ll call Diane and see I can get our legal team to assist or research for you if you need them.”

During the trial, Diane and I sat next to Sara’s parents every day. Work would be fine. I’ve never seen this side of Bill before. He was in charge, ruthless and commanding. Not the same man I heard speak at the conference in New York, or who is so kind, gentle, and loving to me. He had witnesses, surveillance videos. DNA from the rape kit, everything. He was going for the maximum for this guy. This boy molested my Sara.

I felt so sad for Sara having to relive the experience on the witness stand. I cringed as I listened to her relive the assault and answer questions. It appeared that the defense attorney didn’t particularly like seeing Bill on the prosecution side of the room. The defense attorney made Sara l look like it was all her fault, and she broke down crying again. Bill was a lot gentler but still had to ask her some tough questions.

The trial lasted just under four days. The defense gave their final statement to the jury. When it was Bill’s time for his closing arguments, he stood up, buttoned the jacket of his black suit, and he pulled his shoulders back. He paused, then sauntered three-quarters of the way to the defendant, looked at the accused in disgust, and shook his head. Then he walked back and faced the jurors.

“The defendant broke the law not once, but twice. First (Bill held up one finger high above his head), by aggravated assault of Miss Craig with a deadly weapon (he picked up the evidence knife and held up the knife to show the jury, and second (Bill held up his second finger or his other hand), by brutally raping this innocent young lady.” Bill eloquently retold the jury of evidence, the decisive DNA match to the defendant from the rape kit, surveillance videos of him forcibly abducting her, and other relevant facts and evidence. Finally, he picked up the knife again that the defendant held to Sara’s throat. Bill paused and stared at the blade and then held up the knife so that the jury could see it again. He looked at it some more and shook his head, and showed anger on his face. Bill stated while looking directly at the jurors,

“How could it possibly be her fault if he had to use a knife to molest her?” Then pausing to allow the jury to let that soak in. He repeated it, this time slower.

“He held this knife to Miss Craig’s throat, terrorizing her to fear for her life.” Bill held the knife to his throat so tight he turned blue and coughed. He accidentally cut himself, and I noticed his blood dripping on the collar of his white shirt. Then Bill lifted the knife high in the air and stated forcefully, “then he raped Miss Craig by violently thrusting his penis into her again and again and again and again;” and when he said the word ‘again,’ Bill slammed the knife down hard stabbing it into one of his law books every time he said, “again, and again and again.” His last ‘and again’ was very loud in a disgusting voice. He forcefully stabbed the law book one final time, and you could hear the blade vibrate as it oscillated back and forth when he released it. The courtroom gasped.

“Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, boys can’t be boys anymore. This defendant must be held accountable for both of these crimes of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in the first degree and rape in the first degree. Bill walked half-way over towards the boy, stopped, and pointed to the defendant with a stabbing finger.

“He violated and robbed Miss Craig of her dignity and her virginity, he terrorized her life, and he has permanently scared her innocence forever! The law and all of this compelling evidence dictate what must be done. These two despicable acts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and rape must be punished to the full extent of the law. Our civilized society cannot tolerate or allow people like this to walk our streets and violate our mothers, wives, sisters, or daughters. All of you in this jury know what you must now do,” as he held up his law book high with the knife stuck in it to the jury, then slammed it on the prosecutor’s desk.

I could now finally fully exhale and let my hand go from my heart, and I slumped down a bit in my chair.

The deliberations of the jury didn’t take long. I but has seemed hours to me.

The jury handed their verdict to the bailiff, and he gave it to the judge. The judge handed it back to the bailiff to return the head juror. He read it and handed it back to the bailiff to give to the jury.

“Has the jury reached a verdict?” The judge asked.

“Yes, your honor, we have.”

“In the count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in the first degree, how do you find?”

“We find the defendant guilty, your honor.” I squeeze Diane’s hand.

‘In the second count of aggravated rape in the first degree, how do you find?”

“We find the defendant guilty, your honor.” The entire courtroom exhaled again. The police handcuffed the defendant and escorted him out of the courtroom through a side door.

Mr. and Mrs. Craig came over and thanked Bill.

I heard the prosecutors ask Bill if he wants to change sides and join them as a prosecutor because they may not have got this conviction level without his help. He shook their hands and said, “Thank you for the nice offer, but sorry, I must decline. There’s no money in being a prosecutor.”

Diane pulled me aside, “Savannah, see Mrs. Turner, and talk to payroll, and ensure Sara receives her pay, no leave deductions or anything. Tell her and her family she has our support, and she can take as much time as she needs. And that we are here for her.”

I watched Bill yank the knife out of his law book and look at it at the damage he did to it and feel where he cut himself. I handed him a tissue from my purse for his bleeding.

That night I told Bill,

“I’ve never seen this side of you before, Bill. No wonder the prosecutors fear to see you in court.”

“You’ll never see me like that when I with you. I fight 101% for my clients. And I’ll fight hundreds of times harder for you, Savannah .” I thought to myself how cases like this could not affect him personally. But at the same time, I didn’t want to know. All I knew, I was happy for him, the justice system, and especially Sara.

At sentencing, the boy’s father pleaded for mercy from the court. He asked for a minimum sentence because of twenty minutes of youthful indiscretion.

Judge disagreed. “What about Miss Craig’s life now?” He sentenced him to the maximum.

Next: One more surgery.

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About the Author ()

This story is not like other stories that I’ve read saying that the author has always know they were a girl — I think I discovered being one.

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