Saturday, August 20, 2011
How Did I End Up Here? Day 7
“I will keep a patrol going by your place or you can continue staying with me. We have the District Attorney on board with all the information you and Anna dug up he has a lot to answer for. Anna’s name on it so that it won’t be considered tainted. You are just the victim. He will not be offered bail, because he has no ties to the community and is a flight risk,” he answered with confidence.
“I hope you are right.”
Our order came and we ate. Then we drove to the court house. The courtroom was filled with old wood that made you feel almost reverent when you entered. We sat in the courtroom and listened to the District Attorney give all the reasons that Bannister should be remanded to custody. His court appointed lawyer did not object. Bannister was fuming at the remand. He knew he’d have to wait awhile for his sister to arrive.
Dad and I left the courthouse in silence. He dropped me off at my house and we made plans to visit Mom tomorrow.
The trial went on for five days. Bannister’s slick sister, the lawyer, was defending him. The surprise was that Allen Bannister Sr. was there every day. The white haired man sat erectly as he heard every word that described his worthless son. On the day the case went to the jury he approached me.
“I am Allan Bannister Senior. I’d like a moment of your time if I may,” he said softly.
Stunned I responded, “I’m not sure we have anything to talk about.”
“You may change your mind. I have a proposition for you,” he continued as if I’d said nothing.
Thinking it wouldn’t hurt to hear what he had to say I answered, “This way.”
We walked out of the courtroom. I led him to a conference room that was unoccupied. I sat and waited for him to speak.
“First, I want to say that I am sorry for what my son has done to you. He has always been a disappointment. Second, I would like to congratulate you for the thorough job you did investigating him. There are many things about him I did not know. Finally, I have a trust fund to dispense with.”
“I’m not sure how that affects me,” I said hesitantly.
“That’s what I want to talk to you about. You are way too intelligent to have been my son’s child. I understand that he has besmirched your mother’s reputation and caused untold hurt to you and your father. I’d like to take his half of the trust and put it into a fund that will care for your mother for the rest of her life. On her death, the remainder will go to your father. The rest I would like you to have.”
“You don’t need to give us money,” I responded hotly thinking this man was trying to buy me off.
“I know I don’t, but I have no other children and I’d like something good to come of it. For my part, I’d like to know that if I need an investigator in the future I could call on you. I would be honored if you would accept this.”
“May I have time to think about it?” I asked.
“You may have until the jury returns with a verdict,” he replied.
“Thank you.” I put out my hand and he shook it. Then he left the room.
I talked to Dad about this over dinner. He was adamant at first that he wanted no blood money from the Bannisters. I told him to sleep on it. We could talk in the morning.
At breakfast, Dad was quiet then said, “The money would come in handy for helping your mom.”
“I know, Dad. I thought about that too. It will also help if something should happen to you.”
“I don’t know what you have decided, but for my part, you can tell Bannister, it’s okay.”
“I’ve thought long and hard. If there is money left when you and Mom are both gone, I’ll use the money for two things; one will be to improve the local library and one will be to fund Alzheimer’s research.”
“I would like to add a third,” Dad said.
“What would that be?” I asked.
“I’d like a scholarship at the school in your Mom’s name,” he said quietly.
“That’s something that could be done. I’ll talk to Bannister today and have him draw up the papers,” I told him.
Bannister agreed and his daughter drew up the papers. I signed them and we went into the courtroom to hear the verdict.
Allen Bannister Jr. was found guilty of kidnapping and possession of a date rape drug. He
was sentenced to twenty-five to life. Life for Dad and I went back to normal. Me just hoping I would not awaken again in a jail cell.
If you enjoyed this story please let me know. I think there should be a second one so you know what happened when the trust fund money arrived. Had the thought that I might do a series of short stories on Sam Worth.