Sunday, October 5, 2014
Ma Ngyuen Interview (Blogophilia 33.7)
“Ya. Come down hill late. Got off work much later that supposed to. Then found ‘im dere by car.” He said pointing at the chalk outline.
Ma took a drag off his cigarette as he repeated his story for sixth or seventh time. Don’t these cops talk to each other? Maybe he shouldn’t have bothered. It wasn’t like he was illegal like so many in the complex, but it was giving him a little higher profile than he liked. Back home, that could get you killed. Here, it did seem to matter as much.
“So, Mr. Ngyuen, have you ever seen the dead man in the complex before?” Murray chewed on the end of his pen while waiting for the answer.
“Not here during day. Alway working. Don’ know nobody here. Usually when I get home, everyone in bed.”
Rubbing his head a moment, Murray figured that was it. But there was one more thing to clear up.
“Sir, do you remember seeing any other cars or people as you were walking toward your apartment?”
A smoke ring exhaled before answering. “Couple of ladies up by laundry. Some kid on skateboard almost hit me, splashed water on my shoe. But that up by entrance. No cars.”
“And you live in Unit 10-H up the hill there to the left?”
“Ya. Been dere ‘bout year. Nicest place I ever lived. Much better than Hanoi or Bronx.”
“I think I have everything, now. Thank you for your time. You are free to go.”
And with that, Ma exited the cruiser and scampered across the asphalt towards home, happy to be free from captivity.
As the small man disappeared behind his door, Murray thought for a moment. A lot of question with not many answers right now. No ID on the victim, yet. But he guessed he’d be in the system somewhere, too many gang signs not to be. So, what did the Bella Paloma tattoo signify? Pretty Dove did NOT match the decedent. He was short and skinny with a scarred face. More like Feo Cuervo, Ugly Crow.
While it was not confirmed, the Hooker was rumored to be from San Salvador. With the dark, leathery skin of the current decedent could also easily be from there. He was very definitely Mestizo, with Aztec or Mayan features, unlike the blonde beauties on Univision. And while the features were common with the Mexicans Murray dealt with, he had learned the further south the person was from; the more likely it was they would be Mestizo.
Was that psycho Jeremy involved with this, or was it just a quirk he was here in the complex? He made a note to run down the current contact information on him when he got back to the office. Hopefully, it will just be a dead end. This kind of killing wasn’t his style, too direct.
How quickly the day changed. It could have been Monday morning madness for all he knew. Funny thing was, Monday usually was the slow day for Homicide. All the bodies usually had been found and the early part of the week was investigative follow up. Warrants, subpoenas and reports, the drudge work that built and sometimes broke cases. Hours online and on the phone with witnesses and phone companies, trying to tie person A to decedent B’s body. Finding the details no one really wants to know.
Saturday was the day for the bodies. Bodies of victims that needed killing and those who didn’t and it wasn’t up to the detective to decide which was which. Whether they were Hooker or Pastor, each case theoretically got the same service. It was a different song if somebody upstairs said something. He’d seen cases magically closed or gone cold with the right word.
There must be something wrong In wanting to silence any song. It didn’t matter whether the dead guy’s song was evil rap, romantic opera or sappy love song; he still had the right to sing it. But there were still people out there who preferred the silence of violence over the song of life. It kept food on the table.
A text came in on the phone from Jackson. He got lucky and found what might be a witness. He was taking her down to headquarters for a statement. Did he want to join in? Of course, he did. He called over to the patrol sergeant and gave him the close out instructions. So, was this dead guy really connected to the hooker or not? Too early to tell, yet. But doves would be in his dreams for while, for sure.
Note: The Robert Frost line is from Minor Birds, who Frost thought were a distraction.
Pic Guesses: Daliance, Drowning in time, Against the tide, Surf alarm,Wet dream, Killing time.