THE TRIAL (Fiction)
“Maria how was it” Peter said “We all were engrossed in what the lawyer said, We did not know it would be a murder case” “Marie are you sure you want to be part of this, you never know what might happen? you hear terrible things” “Its okay Peter it should be interesting, but I am afraid I will have to leave you, I have to stay in a Hotel, I can’t even contact you till the trial is over and the verdict is read” After packing my bags, hugging Peter so hard, I said “will see you later take care god bless”.
We were told not to believe what the papers had said and only make up our minds on the evidence and facts that we to be presented to us. The hotel it’s self was very basic 10 small rooms all nearly the same. The Bed it was double a side table with a lamp. Small wardrobe and chest a draws, a TV on a shelf, it had sky which amazed me, for a Hotel so small. Dark leather chair and decorated quite plain in a pale green colour with a couple of pictures in frames, one of the Ocean and one of the sea, next to the bed room was a basic bathroom decorated in cream.
In the still of the night tucked up in my bed I wondered how many jurors there will be, about the case and to think someone’s life was going to depend on me. Excitement ran through me its not every day you get to take part in a murder case, I tossed and I turned eventually went to sleep; I had to be at court for 7am to meet all my colleagues who had been chosen along with me.
I looked in the long mirror just to check that I looked okay, for the day ahead, I decided to ware my long brown hair in a bun, my eyes they are blue I have, a round small face and an attractive smile, which is what lots of people have said to me. Now at the age of 23, my suit Beige and blouse was brown plus matching high heels, as I am only a mere 5ft 3in. with a petit body that’s me. With one last quick look, I headed out the door, for I only had time for a cup of tea, hailed a taxi “hi please can you take me to The Court in market square” “ok my dreary what’s happening today” said the taxi driver as we drove away, I replied “Sorry I cant say but the sun is shining it’s going to be a lovely day” “yeah my lovely he said” we spoke no more.
The court room had grand walls in plush gold and white deep wall paper with like half moons sketched with in. There were 25 seats each side of the isle for the public and loved ones to watch the trail. The usual tables for the defence and the prosecutor and smack in the middle at the end of the room was a tall throne where the Judge would sit, small chair to the left for the narrator who records all that is said. Then on the right was 10 basic chairs covered in satin red one of those for me I knew then there was going to be 9 other jurors and me.
I was shown to a small room at the back of the court; it was plain with 10 chairs, large water jug and 10 note books, plus pencils were placed on the round large table for us to take notes on the trial.
In front of me was a tall slender well dressed man in a suit maybe 45. He said “hi George is my name” explained he was a baker by trade” “I replied “hi my name is Marie I am a fashion designer nice to meet you” then one by one the jurors entered the room. George was no 1 and I was no 2
Then came Charlie No 3 who was short with long brown hair tied back in pony tail, his posture quite large, Maybe because he was a painter and did not exercise much, he dressed casually in jeans and a shirt aged 29.
No 4, Betty 48, average build walked with a limp, dressed very plain in a Light Blue dress, which came just below her knees, a warm caring face with a delicate smile she had 3 children, her hair Light Blonde curly and short and she was a house wife.
No 5 was Lee Slim in build black spiky hair, face square with a rugged completion, a Store manger and he wore a Blue suit and a white shirt plus tie he had just turned 25.
No 6 was Neil Very Tall and slender very good looking short brown hair, dressed in Grey tight fit jeans and white polo shirt, very tanned he had just returned from Spain, a fitness instructor at 32.
Then we came to No 7, Gary a plump short man who wore a sports jacket, brown trousers spoke very deep, his face was wrinkled and he had a beard and moustache he was a retired Insurance Broker now age 62.
Linda was no 8 she had her own Florist shop in the middle of town, of average height small brown eyes, egg shaped face a scare on her chin, Medium length curly bright ginger hair. Dressed in Blue slacks and white pearly jumper age about 50 I think.
There had to be a joker and that was May no 9, she is an actress 36 and has spent lots of her time on the stage doing musicals, spoke very softly had lovely blue eyes, long black hair round face, with great big chunky earrings which reached to her shoulder, Very Tall and slim wore a fantastic glittered dress she stood out from all the rest.
Last of all there was Michelle no 10 very quite, small in build spoke with a lisp, oval shaped face quite attractive in her own way, wore a black trouser suit and pink blouse, she was Hotel Manager aged 57.
We all took our place and the Honourable High Judge John Braintree entered the room a blonde curly wig and a black gown he had piercing eyes which, went straight through if his stare came your way, had a huge nose big puffy cheeks Very Tubby and short. (I thought he would make a great Santa). After he had seated we were all sworn in.
Now terror and excitement built up in me. The court room was jammed no seat was free, Newspaper reporters, different people from all walks of life were there yet one small child on the second row of seats, about 6 years old golden ringlets a face like an angle pure with a slight tint of red from her cheeks, dressed in a bonny pink dress and a ribbon to match, I wondered what a child so young was doing here..
Jonnie Bonnet was led into the court room he was 38 Tall dark hair very handsome with bright light blue eyes, dressed in a light Blue suit and matching shirt and tie, had committed the most gruesome murders ever to be trialled in this small town,
The prosecutor Mr Mac Nelly a short rugged man not very well dressed spoke with a Scottish accent aged about 57 opened his statements “We will over the next few days give evidence and witnesses to prove that Jonnie Bonnet did savagely hack Debbie one of his twin daughters of six to death, mutilate his second wife Caroline with the same axe before disposing of the bodies in a un used cave.
Two murders I thought, already I felt sick inside, what was this going to be like, I looked at around some had white faces but all were glued.
Miss Pastor stood up acting for the defence immaculately dressed in a black suit, hair neatly worn in a bun not like mine at all, Slim and extremely attractive age about 36. She then started her opening statement “I will prove that Jonnie Bonnet was unable to commit this crime with counter evidence and witnesses”.
Over the few days Jonnies personal life unfolded.
He had married Caroline only three years ago, she was a top model they had met at the opening of one of Jonnies casinos, the twins Debbie and Penny were from his first wife Patsy who unfortunately died of a heart attack at only 27.
Jonnie owned a large mansion on the edge of town seven bedrooms, built in gym and indoor swimming pool, including 3 acres of garden. He employed two house keepers 2 gardeners a cook plus a nanny for the children
He was one for the ladies and had numerous affairs on the day in question Jonnie had acclaimed to be at his casino with John Walters who managed the casino for him. Caroline and the girls had decided to spend a day on the private beach which adjoined the tail end of the garden. It was six when they returned to the house, Caroline apparently had gone for a shower and retire to bed with a migraine head ache the Children were bathed by Mary one of the house keepers and put to bed.
It was at 6 am the next morning when Mark and David two experienced rock climbers had taken refuge in the cave off the beach to have a rest and a cup of coffee when they noticed the water running beneath their feet was a bright red, they carried, on walking further into the cave then discovered the gruesome remains of 2 bodies one of a child the other looked like a women but they could not be sure. Both were sick instantly at what they saw.
We were then shown the pictures, by Mr Mac Nelly, Debbie’s body all bloody missing an arm and a leg, her face with black marks on , her hair all matted and wet as for Caroline I felt physically sick the body was in a big bag all dismantled, they used her finger marks to identify the remains. The autopsy had confirmed they had been murdered between 10pm and 10.30 the night before.
I thought how anyone can be so evil to do this.
John Walters was brought to the stand a Big Husky man with Grey hair large rimmed glasses Mr Mac Nelly questioned John as to the where a bouts of Jonnie that day “Jonnie was with me all day and evening except for 2 hours”. he said “do you know where he had gone” “Jonnie said he had to get some fresh air, as the casino was loosing money and the pressure was getting to him” “When he returned did you ask exactly where he went” “No because I did not get to talk to him again “How do you know then he had only been gone 2 hours and not longer” “I thought I caught a glimpse of him in the office at 10pm”. “ Are you sure it was Jonnie” “yes”. “Can you explain to me why Mr Wright the Publican saw his car driving down the hill from the Beach at about 10.25pm”, “No I can’t”
Miss Pastor cross examined “Mr Walters can you tell me if Jonnie ever leant his car to any one, and to your knowledge did he that day” “Jonnie was always letting people drive his porche he was that sort of guy would help anyone” “How sure can you be that you saw Jonnie in the office and did anyone else see him” “I am pretty sure it was him”.
Character witnesses were brought forward we heard he had funded the New Hospital wing, given a lot of money to charity, he had affairs mostly one night stands really, women were always around him but he loved Caroline and the girls.
The house keepers were questioned and Mary told of the argument that had happened that morning, things were thrown round the room a picture was broken a glass table, Jonnie left and slammed the door poor Caroline was all in tears and shaking from head to toe. “His got himself mixed up in Drug smugger ling I was threatened on the phone yesterday if Jonnie does not come up with the goods by the day after tomorrow me and the girls would pay for it” Mary had told the court.
It was hard to keep up with all the questions and cross examines that were taking place, Jonnies finances were talked about he was nearly broke when the truth came out, He had taken a life insurance policy out on Caroline and the girls for quarter of a million, two years ago. and one on himself.
The Drug smuggling was brought foward. People in the stands kept their eyes glued to the Gangster Peter Bragg "I have knowen Jonnie for six years he is a sly one puts on the Good Guy act but he has a wicked temper, it was his idear to hire the plane and go out to China and fly the cocaine back here, I knew he was short of cash as he had asked for a loan" He told Mr Mac Nelly.
The days went buy when we all were sat at night in our hotel we discussed the days events, from all of our notes.
Mr Mac Nelly summoned all his employers one by one they were questioned and cross examined
It was day three of the trial and after hearing so much evidence about the car the foot prints down to the beach, the broken window in th cellar at te house, Blood in his bedroom, the bedding all ruffled in Debbie room. The glimse by the gardner of a tall slim man.
Know one could really confirm the two hours Jonnie had been missing, infact Mr Mac Nelly said “Jonnie had time and motive to kill them both”. for he needed the insurance money to get out of dept"
Miss Pastor said “there was no proof it was him as anyone could have borrowed his car”. and witnesses had confirmed that jonny was at th casino"
The right Honarable Judge stopped the case and "said we would resume after lunch at 2.30pm"
We all returned to the room at the back of the court some of us argueing about the cause and if he really did commit the horrid deed.
Three days we had been listeneing to everdence.
At 2.30 exactly. We were all summed back to the court room.
The Judge appeared there was loads of comotion in the court room. I thought something is up. Then the Judge bagged his hammer down hard "Silence in court" then said in a very stern voice "New evidence has come to light, apparently Mr Jonnie Bonnet has a Twin brother which he never knew about, he escaped from the institution, four days ago where he has been for the last 34 years. Paul his twin had been born with a, part of his brain missing, Jonnies mum had kept him at home till he was four, yet he was so like jackel and hyde she could not control him anymore and had him, commited, yet never told Jonnie of his exsistance".The crowd in the court room started shouting, The Judge banged his hammer again "quite in court or i will have you all thrown out" Silence was then heard The Jugde continued,
"Jonnie was so well known and always in the newspapers, Paul when, apprehended only an hour ago, was found hiding 2 miles from the cave all covered in blood and an axe in his hand was stareing at Jonnies and Carolines wedding picture cut out from a newspaper". he conclueded.
I sat with my mouth open so shocked at what i had heard.
Miss Pastor asked then for the case to be dismissed.
The judge banged down his hammer shouted “case dismissed”
Jonnie turned round tears streeming from his face walked to the small girl, in the pink dress picked her up and kissed her and walked out a free man.