Home Invasion Investigation
Zack was heading out the door when the call came in that something had gone down at Colins place. What the fuck is wrong with the people in this town? he cursed under his breath. Seems like theres more crime in this little dirt-hole than most large cities have.
He hung up the phone and called out to his partner in the next room, Hey White, mind going with me to check out OBriens place? Apparently someone took it upon themselves to redecorate while he was out.
Bud popped his head around the corner and looked at Zack like he'd just grown two heads.
"Are you shitting me, Grant? I'm going on fucking baby leave. I only stopped by to grab some stuff." He grumbled a moment as he thought. He wasn't leaving his partner to go alone on a call that could be dangerous. Nobody else was around.
"Let me call Curry. He and the Princess are at the hospital with Marie and as long as they stay with her I can go on this call." He grabbed his cell and disappeared inside the office to make the call. Bud returned in a couple of minutes.
"They'll stay with Marie until we're done. Varner and Jessica are watching Katie Marie. They're getting married soon. They need the practice." Bud gave him a small partly evil grin. "What are we waiting for? Let's go."
Minutes later the pair arrived at Colin O'Brien's house and
knocked on the door. "Sheriff's Department," Zack called out.
Colin opened the door, "Come on in," he said, stepping aside so the two men could enter.
Zack and Bud stepped into the house, stopped dead in their tracks as they surveyed the room.
Bud took in the scene of severe vandalism including the words etched into multiple surfaces. He let out a low whistle and gave a quick look to Zack before addressing Colin.
"Mr. O'Brien. Whoever the twisted individual is who did this has a helluva beef with you. You need to tell us what you know from the beginning. We'll need to dust your place for fingerprints and look for signs of a forced entry."
Colin's jaw and fists clenched. The shock had begun to wear off now replaced with extreme anger. "Two words - Sid Harbor," he replied.
Zack looked over at his partner, cleared his throat, then back to Colin,
"You see him do it?"
"No," Colin admitted, "but I know that that bastard did this."
Zack cleared his throat, folded his arms. "Look, everyone knows there's been bad blood between the two of you so why don't you do like my partner said, start from the beginning, and fill us in on why you think that Mr. Harbor had anything to do with this."
Colin didn't really want to fill them in on his business or how he'd been with Kate Harbor earlier that morning. He didn't particularly like cops or answering questions. He sat for a moment, imagining what he'd do if he got a hold of Sid.
"Okay," he finally answered, "earlier this morning Kate showed up in front of my garage. She seemed a bit upset so I invited her into my office for some water and a little chat. Afterwards, I sorta followed her over to the diner. We chatted a moment, I left, came here and found..." he motioned around his vandalized room, "this!"
Bud gave Zack a look. Something was definitely hinky here. Harbor was weird. There was no doubt in Buds mind to that. But, would he do something that he could so easily be linked to. Could they even link him to this?
"Would there be any reason Sid Harbor could misconstrue the meeting between you and Mrs. Harbor? And wipe that snarl off your face. I ain't saying there was nothing between you, but could the lady's husband could have thought there was?"
Colin folded his arms in front of him, his jaw clenched. He thought about how Arthur had reacted back in the garage when he saw Kate go into Colin's office with him, thought about what he'd said to Colin afterwards. "Who the fuck knows what goes on in the mind of that fuckin' weirdo," Colin snapped, but then took a breath and added more calmly, "but yeah, perhaps. People talk, ya know? Word got around to him that his wife was seen going into my office or having lunch with me or somethin', well..."
Zack turned to Bud, "I'll make sure the perimeter is secure, start looking around the outside for anything the perp mighta left behind. You wanna get the kit, start dustin' for prints in here?"
"Yeah, on it partner." Bud exited back out the door to get the kit. He was glad to get the hell out of there for a minute. If Harbor was the one who did this he was really one sick vindictive fuck and O'Brien better watch his back.
Bud dialed Marie on the phone quick to make sure she was all right. He should be there with his wife and new daughter. Now this might take some time. He grabbed the fingerprint kit from the cruiser and jogged back to O'Brien's place. The sooner they cracked this vandalism case he'd be holding his baby girl, Eliza.
Once Zack and Bud had finished their work they gathered back in O'Brien's living room to go over their findings.
"So what now?" Colin asked. "You find what you need to put that bastard behind bars?"
Zack looked at Bud, shook his head, then back at Colin. He knew the man expected them to find evidence that pointed to Harbor but he'd come up empty handed. Unless his partner had come up with something then there wasn't much more they could do.
"Nothing. This is obviously the work of a sick bastard, O'Brien...a clever sick bastard. No prints around points of entry into your place or around the areas of vandalism. I figure the smudged prints I did find are probably yours. We'll match them up to make sure." He shook his head. "This looks like a dead end for physical evidence."
Bud somehow knew this wasn't going to be a quick straight forward case. Marie would have his balls in a sling if he stayed away too long.
"He did it," Colin told the two officers. "I know it and you know it." He paced around the room, his fists clenched. "There has to be something you can do, take him in for questioning or something."
"All we got at this point is circumstantial at best," Zack said. "Not enough to make an arrest. My advice is to stay away from Harbor. And his wife. Don't give him any reason to come after you, if in fact he is the one that did this."
Colin didn't want to tell the cops that he'd already called Sid earlier before they'd arrived. Sid had of course denied having anything to do with the break-in but Colin still intended on sending him a repair bill for the damage. It was all he could do to keep from marching up to that weird glass house of his and kicking his show-pony ass.
He let out a sigh, reluctantly nodded to Zack that he'd stay away from Sid and Kate. "So youre saying you won't even talk to him, then? Find out if he has an alibi, that sorta thing?" he asked Bud and Zack.
Bud looked at Grant. This had really gone from shit to worse shit.
"We don't have any hard evidence to accuse him of anything. We could have a 'friendly' chat with him, but can't pull him into the station to question him. That's the best we can do until we get more to go on. I know that's not what you want to hear, but that's where we are."
Bud thought about what he'd do if Harbor did this to his place. It was best not to follow that line of thought. That's how Bud had got himself into trouble in the past.
Colin sighed, nodded and led them to the door.
"We'll be in touch," Zack told him as he stepped out onto the front porch. "You have anymore problems let us know. Oh and if you're interested and have the extra cash we could arrange to have a security system put in your place."
Colin flipped over the card, looked at it. "Yeah, I'll think about it," he told them, wondering if a fancy security system would stop someone like Sid Harbor from breaking in again. Somehow he doubted it. He shut the door behind the two officers and stood staring at the damaged room he was left with.
"So, what do ya think?" Zack asked Bud once they were in the cruiser. He knew talking to that weird fuck, Sid Harbor, was the last place his partner wanted to be right now. Not with his wife and new baby back at the hospital. "I could drop you off at your car so you can get back to the hospital, then I can drive over and talk to Harbor."
Bud thought for a moment. He should go back to the hospital. He'd been gone too long already. Yet something told him that he shouldn't let his partner talk to Harbor alone. And it would be best to gauge Harbor's reaction with the two of them rather than one alone.
"Shit!" Bud called Marie on the phone. Curry answered. Marie was asleep and Ashley was holding and fussing over his baby girl. Bud briefly explained what was going on. Curry said they'd stay until Bud returned. Bud switched off his phone.
"C'mon. Let's go. We can talk to that screwed up fuck, Harbor, and then you can drop me off at the hospital. Just remember the color's pink." Grant gave him a confused look.
"That's the color of the gift you buy Marie for the baby so she forgives both of us." A small grin flashed across his face before quickly being replaced with an expression that read all business.
"Deal," Zack told him and sped off down the road to the Harbor residence.