The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane - Part 11
By Barbara Lynn Terry
Chapter 1 - The men in the silver Mercedes.
As Greg Olsen was watching the silver Mercedes, the five men got out of the car, and walked toward the picnic area. As they got nearer to the picnic, Steve Hastings approcahed the men.
“Excuse me, gentlemen, I’m officer Steve Hastings of the Pine Forest police department. May I ask what your business here is?”
“Hey, dude, we came for the party. It looks like things are really swingin’ here.”
“Gentlemen, this is a private town picnic for the townspeople of Pine Forest. I don’t recall seeing either of you anywhere in Pine Forest. Are you Pine Forest residents?”
“Nah, officer. We were driving through, and saw the party, so we thought we would join in.”
“I see,” Steve Hastings remarked. “I am sorry, but you will have to leave.”
“In a pig’s eye we will. We came for the party and we are going to go to this party,” said the big mouth of the group.
“All right, I will need to see identification from all of you.”
“Man, you need to learn some manners.”
It was then that they took guns from their back pockets. They pointed the guns at Steve. It was then that Greg sneaked up behind the five with his service revolver in hand.
“Drop your guns gentlemen. Pine Forest police officer.”
Momentarily distracted by Greg, gave Steve a chance to draw his own weapon.
“Gentlemen, place your guns on the ground. Place your hands behind your heads and interlock your fingers,” Steve ordered.
“Like hell we will,” the big mouth, said, looking behind him.
“This is officer Greg Olsen, there are three other officers on their way. You five are under arrest for; 1. Carrying concealed weapons, and 2. Threatening the safety of a police officer. Both are felonies.
“You have the right to remain silent, if you choose to give up that right, anything you say now, can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to have an attorney present, and if you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for each of you by the judge. Do each of you understand these rights I have just read them to you?”
“Yeah, pig, we understand,” Mr. Big Mouth remarked.
It was at that moment that officer Tony Palmetti walked up to the trouble area.
“What’s this, Steve?”
“We need your cuffs and a marked squad to take these five in. I will have to see the district attorney on Monday. I am swearing out complaints for all five. They were carrying concealed weapons, and they threatened my safety and Greg’s safety. When the marked squad gets here I will tell the officer to place felony holds on all of them.”
“Hey, man, you can’t do that. In Detroit it is …”
“You aren’t in Detroit. In fact, gentlemen, you may not know this, but Pine Forest isn’t even in Michigan. In this state, what you have done, are felonies. You are being held in the city jail until Monday. Then you will see the district attorney.”
“What amount of momey can we give you, to forget this whole thing?”
“You just attempted to bribe a police officer. The same rights as I have read them to you, apply here, too. Attempted bribery of a police officer is a felony.”
“Everything here is a felony, huh. What do you squares do for fun around here?”
Just then, a marked squad pulled up to the curb. Officer Janet Hastings got out of the passenger side.
“Hey, Steve. What’s going on?”
“Look guys, we got a bitch to take us to jail. Hey sweet cheeks, wanna do a little rubberneckin’?”
“Steve, there is a paddy wagon on the way. They will take the five rude prisoners in. I was sent to reinforce you, while the other officers patrol the picnic.”
Janet Hasting was 24 years old, and Steve’s sister. She had a marksman medal, and was studying to be an expert in firearms and munitions. Tomorrow, Janet would be at the picnic in civilian clothes.
“It is too bad that we are in the city limits. I would love to have you show these hoodlums just why making fun of you is not a good idea.”
“Don’t scare them, Steve. They might get nervous and confess.” Janet put her finger to one side of her mouth, as if thinking. “You know, Steve, on second thought, let’s make them nervous.” The three officers laughed at the prisoners expense.
“If only, Janet, if only,” Steve Hastings remarked.
The paddy wagon pulled up. Actully it was a pickup truck with an iron shell over the extra wide truck bed. Officer James Peabody got out and opened the hatch. He then walked over and began shackling the prisoners together.
James Peabody was a rookie officer with only eight months out of the academy. He was 23 years old, with California blonde hair and golden tan. He was originally from Carmel, California, where his father runs a vinyard and winery.
When James Peabody called his dad to tell him he had graduated from the state police academy, his father was glad that he was making something out of his life. How James got be a police officer in Pine Forest is food for another book.
James and Steve helped the five men in to the back of the “paddy” wagon. They made sure the shackles were fastened to the iron rings on the floor. James got in to the driver’s side and drove the prisoners to the city jail.
Janet said goodbye to Steve and Greg, then got in her squad to resume patrol. Steve and Greg returned to keeping watch at the picnic. It was a nice day out, and Steve and the other officers made sure it stayed that way.
Jimmy Shepard and his two friends stopped throwing the Frisbee and went to John Shepard’s tent.
“Dad, I would like a Black Bear cherry cola. Would you buy my friends a soda, too, please?”
“Sure, Jimmy, I would be honored.”
Jimmy then asked his dad if he could have a brat.
“Sure, Jimmy,” John Shepard answered his son. “Would you boys like a brat, a hot dog, or a burger?”
“Hot dog, please, Mr. Shepard,” both boys said in unison.
The boys, with their soft drinks and sandwiches, went by the brook and sat on the grass. They sat there eating and listening to the water softly flowing as they watched the fish swim by.
The River Brook was an habitual fishing place for the townspeople. But, since it was shallow, your options were limited. There was trout, fresh water perch, bass and many other types of fresh water fish.
“Hello, boys. How do the fish look today?”
”Hello, officer Steve,” the three boys said together.
“Are you boys thinking about fishing?”
“Yes, officer Steve. The perch and bass look really good.”
“That’s fine, Bobby. I may see you down here. When were you planning on coming?”
“We were thinking about Wednesday, because my dad wants to cook out. I thought maybe a few good sized fish would be something nice to cook on the grill.”
“I agree, Jimmy. Well, I will see you three later.” Steve then resumed his patrol.
The three boys finished their lunch, and placed their garbage in the park trash bin. They went to the park building and got a can of tennis balls and three tennis racquets. They went to the tennis courts and set up their area.
Jimmy and Bobby were the first two to play. The third boy would play the winner. Tommy Jensen would be the caller for the first game and then play the winner. Bobby Evers took the first serve, and the first game began.
The tennis game was about even, when Bobby Evers slammed the ball on to Jimmy’s side of the court. The game was called in favor of Bobby Evers. Jimmy stepped aside and Tommy Jensen took his racquet and took the side of the court Jimmy was on. Jimmy would be the caller for this game.
From the food and beer tents, John Shepard and George Simons could see everybody and all the play areas. They watched Jimmy and his two friends playing tennis, and having a great time. John Shepard listened as Jimmy was calling the play by play.
When each boy had played the other at least one game, they decided to get a soda. The boys took the tennis balls and racquets back to the park building. Bobby went to his parents and asked for a little money to buy himself and Tommy a soda. Jim Evers took the money from his pocket, and gave it to Bobby.
“There is enough there to get a hot dog or whatever, for you and Tommy. Isn’t that Jimmy Sheptard you were playing tennis with?”
“Yes, dad,” Answered Bobby. “His dad is the one grilling by the white tent.”
“Alright, boys, have a great time.”
“Thank you, dad,” Bobby Evers said, with a smile.
Bobby and Tommy joined Jimmy at John Sgepard’s tent. Bobby irdered a ginger ale, and Tommy wanted a Sprite. Jimmy using his host manners, had waited for Bobby and Tommy to get their money.
“Dad, may I have a Coke, please”
“Coming right up, Jimmy,” Answered John Shepard.
The trio walked around the picnic, just talking to other children. The largest grapevine in the world is the children. You can find more gossip from the children than you can from thr ladies garden tea gathering.
They were talking to Francine McGuire, who told the boys about the excitement with the five men from a silver car. Francine didn’t know what kind of car it was, only that it was silver. She told the boys how officers Tony, Greg, Steve and Janet had arrested the five men. Then an officer Francine didn’t know, came and took the five men to jail.
Pine Forest was one of those towns that if something happened, the news spread fast. The grapevine news spread faster than an Air Force jet flying at the sped of sound. Jimmy, Bobby and Tommy excused themselves, and went over by officer Greg Olsen.
“Hello, officer Greg,” Jimmy greeted Greg with a smile. “Francine told us avout the men in the silver car. What happened?”
“Well, Jimmy, I can’t say right now. All I know is there an altercation.”
“What does that mean, officer Greg?” Asked Tommy Jensen.
“It just means there was a small problem.”
“Oh!” The three boys exclaimed together.
Satisfied with Greg’s explanation, the three boys decided to throw the Frisbee again. Bobby went by his father and got his Frisbee. They went away from the crowd, and began playing.
It was getting to be late, and folks had to go to church in the morning. Steve blew his police whistle and then spoke in to his megaphone.
“Ladies and gentlemen, it is time to head back home. There is church in the morning, and we can all come back tomorrow. Good night, folks, and have a good evening.”
The townspeope began gathering their things, and started heading to their cars. As they were walking toward the road, they saw a tow truck hooking up the silver Mercedes. Most of the townspeople did not know about the five men that were arrested. This is the way Steve Hastings wanted the people to be. He wanted the townspeople to have fun.
The only two that did not leave right away, was John Shepard and George Simons. Their task was to make sure that all the lawn chairs were taken down and placed in the white tent. When they had finished this, Steve told them they were leaving to clock out.
Chapter 2 - An evening at the Shepard home.
When all of the lawn chairs were put away, John Shepard and George Simons collected Jimmy and thy went home. One nice thing about small towns is, there is no rush hour. George, John and Jimmy were home in ;ess than ten minutes. When they pulled in to the driveway, they saw Jay Simons outside, singing. Jay did have a very nice voice for not taking any singing or voice lessons.
They all stood there listening to Jay, before they went in the house. Inside the house, there was the smell of corn, roast beef, coffee and, Dutch apple pie. Since lunch was a while ago, both the Shepard and Simons families were hungry.
Everybody washed their hands, and waited for dinner to be served. Yes, it was nine thirty, and it would be a late dinner. But it usually is on town event night, unless it is the block party.
Dinner was almost ready, so every one took their places. The roast beef was cut in to slices, because Eileen Shepard knew that her husband liked to make a roast beef sandwich when he ate his dinner.
Eileen brought out the roast beef and set it on the table. She asked Kathy to help with the potatoes and the corn on the cob. When everything was set on the table, Jimmy said grace.
After grace, everybody sat down and the food was passed around. They talked about how they enjoyed the first day of the picnic.
“Dad,” Jimmy started the conversation. “Why didn’t everyone know about the men in the silver car?”
“Because, son, it is the business of the police to keep order at such an event like a town picnic. They try to handle a bad situation as quiet as they can. This way, the other people can continue ro have fun.
“How did you like playing tennis wuth your two friends?”
“I liked it. Tomorrow, we’re going to play more tennis. Throwing the Frisbee was alright, but the tennis games were more fun.”
“Well, at least you enjoyed yourself,” John Shepard remarked. “Tomorrow is another day, as they say. I think we will have a peaceful Sunday. Are ypu coming, Eileen?”
“Yes, John, I will come and gave fun.”
The dinner having been eaten, and everyone was full. Eileen, Jay Simons and his mother, as well as Kathy Shepard cleared the table while John and George went outside.Jimmy Shepard had already had one baseball glove and the baseball.
“Son, would you mind playing a little catch with ne and George.”
“No, dad, I would love to.”
Jimmy Shepard, John Shepard and George Simons formed a triangle and began to throw the baseball to each other. They pretended they were base men in a title game. They threw the ball hard like the game depended on this one play.
They then pretended they could hear the shouts from yhe crowd. Jimmy Shepard played shortstop on the city’s softball league. He didn’t mind the fast and hard throws from his father and George Simons.
When there are four people doing the cleanup, it doesn’t take long to do the job. When the cleanup was finished, They all went out to watch the guys play catch.
Even though George Simons and John Shepard were the organizers of the weekend town picnic, they would not be grilling on Sunday. Two other men would be grilling at the River Brook town picnic. John and George would be having fun on Sunday.
It was almost eleven o’clock, so everyone decided it was bed time. They all went inside the house and right to their bedrooms. Everyone brushed their teeth, and got in to their night clothes. After saying their prayers, they all climbed in to their beds.
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