It was now 4:15 am. Bob Keller and his 2 rookies were almost half-way down the path to the lake. Bob knew better than to tell Howard that his 2 men were rookies and women, at that. (The reason they were outside, rather than inside was to prevent a scene while Bob was questioning Howard.)
Carol Janson was a thin blond in her late 20’s. She was alert at all times and seemed to have the strength of a bull. Beverly Liftken, on the other hand, was a brunette, a little older, a little heavier and definitely not as strong as a bull. However, she was level headed, intelligent, and did everything by the book.
It was Carol who first saw something in the path. Her flashlight drifted across something and Carol immediately passed the light across the path again. “Bev-” Carol yelled out and turned her face to the bushes. She had never seen a murder victim since she had been on the job for just 3 weeks.
Beverly quickly came up the path to meet Carol. “Oh, my God. Sergeant Keller!” Bob was right behind the two women and was horrified at what he saw. The body of young Elizabeth was covered with crimson blood, glistening in the faint light of the morning. “What in God’s name happened here? We’ve got what appears to be deep scratches and torn flesh. She may have encountered a large wild animal.” Pumas have been known to walk the woods but they were scarce. “We won’t know for sure what has happened until we get the forensic team here. Carol, make that call and don’t disturb anything here.”
The town of Sandy Oaks was small but had an excellent team of law enforcement and forensic investigators. The Medical Examiner was an older man with a spotless reputation. He was sometimes called away to testify in court regarding high-profile murder cases. The forensic team was sometimes called to aid in special cases in surrounding towns because those towns were even smaller than Sandy Oaks.
Carol did as Bob instructed. The Medical Examiner was on his way as were 3 forensic specialists. As she put her cell phone back into her pocket, she glanced up the road toward the Johnston’s house. There was a light in the distance and she knew Howard and Jen were waiting for news. No parent wants to hear news like this, she thought.
Just in case you missed the first 8 chapters or need to refresh your memory, you can follow the links below! Thanks for reading!