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Hey all, it’s me Frank Jones again. I wrote that post a while ago
about why you shouldn’t be a paranormal investigator and a lot of you liked it. Since settling into my hideaway in the mountains, life has become quiet and I thought about checking in. The plague hit us like nothing and now that everyone is wanting to travel again, I thought to say hi. I want to say thanks to all of you who commented and gave me those weird pointy thingies this social media does. Some of you even figured out my post office box address and sent me letters. I appreciate it (and don’t do it again).
The common strain among your posts was wanting to know if I had ever encountered other things as an auditor. Of course I have but I have been reluctant to tell you because I don’t want to shine some sort of light on all of it or make it sound like some romantic adventure. It’s “pissing yourself” fear all wrapped up in a waking nightmare with a side of gory terror. I am one of the few who actually made it to retirement…if that’s what you could call this life I’m living now.
But, I have nothing else to do really. Carl only visits once in a while when he’s passing through and I cannot risk any other sort of company knowing I’ve pissed off a lot of people…and things. So, I’m back on this internet board and sharing. So many are curious, I thought maybe another story can scare you all straight. This was the first time complacency almost got me and another killed.
This story takes place somewhere in the 90s in a small New England town. It was one of those places nestled along the banks of a serene river, historic brick buildings line the winding streets, their facades adorned with weathered signs that hint at the town's seafaring heritage. A place where everything smelled like either the ocean or decaying fish. I’m not going to specifically name the town to protect the young lady that may still be living there but in the heart of the town, there’s a renowned drawbridge which stands as a testament to the place’s affinity for water. Its ancient mechanisms creak and groan when allowing vessels to pass through the calm waterway. It also had some of the best outdoor markets I had a chance to stop and check out.
I didn’t pass through this part of the country that often as my boss preferred me to do the long hauls across the country but there was a dead haul nobody wanted.I took it cause I wanted a change of scenery. I was already working as an auditor and part of a loose alliance of others who investigated and dealt with any weird things. I actually had a few monsters under my belt. I honestly had the foolhardy idea that I could handle anything out there. God, I was an idiot.
The supernatural never crossed my mind until that evening, stopping to fuel up my red 1992 Peterbilt 379 and paying for the gas with the attendant and restocking up on those beef jerky sticks and coffee.
That was when I noticed her. She was a young woman about in her mid 30s looking like one of the corporate types with the short hair cut and business suit. I would have not paid her any mind if it wasn’t for the touch of apprehension on her face as she talked on one of those new fangled bright yellow Nokia cellphones. Soft strands of chestnut hair framed her face, their gentle sway moving as she glanced around while talking on the phone. As I observed her, I couldn't help but notice the way her fingers trembled slightly, when trying to get money out of her pocket. I’ve seen that type of fear before. So, like a creep, I eavesdropped on her call.
“Yes, it happened again,” she had said as the nickels finally made it to the counter to pay for her snacks. “I could have sworn there was something outside the window near the edge of the forest….no, of course the security cameras didn’t pick up anything. They’re cheap. Ronald was a skinflint when it came to things like this. Hope he’s rotting in hell wherever he is.”
My mind began to drift away, more annoyed I couldn’t get a move on it. It sounded like a problem for the police and if anything, I was gonna tell her that. It was what she said next that made me stop and brought back the reality of the world.
“Yeah. like nine or ten feet tall. I’m thinking kids are playing around with scarecrows or something. Won’t come from the edge of the forest and when I check, I can see foot impressions and stuff. I already put in a call to the cops. They found nothing.“
“Did it sway a bit and its eyes seem to glint like a cats or owl?” I asked without thinking.
The look I got from both her and the gas attendant made me realize what I had done. Well, too late now.
“I’ll call you back,” she said quickly, eyeing me as she hung up the phone and slipped it back into her purse.
“You need me to walk you to your car, ma’am?” the attendant asked, staring at me.
Of course, I forgot that The Truck Stop Killer had only been arrested a few years before.
“I’m fine, thank you,” she said, quickly gathering her stuff and making for the door. I slapped the one hundred and seventy bucks on the counter to pay for my diesel guzzler ignoring the change and followed her out but making sure to not move in a way that caused the teenager in the station to call the cops.
“Ma’am,” I called out to her and she turned to me while hurrying up her pace.
“I’ve got pepper spray. Stay away from me.”
“The thing in the woods. You could have sworn you smelled fresh dirt like mulch and it seemed to sway back and forth like it could not keep its balance.” I threw it out there in desperation.
She froze and turned to look at me. Eying me up and down as I kept my distance and angled to head towards my truck.
“How do you know?”
“I…uh…dealt with something like that before. On a job in Canada.”
“Who are you?” she asked, looking at my faded shirt and company logo. “A trucker?”
“I moonlight as a problem solver. Like an auditor of sorts.”
“Who is it?” she demanded, eyes still affixed to me and hand in her purse.
“Better question is ‘what is it?’,” I answered.
I have learned to pick up on the contempt and disbelief from people who hadn’t seen what I have. I was already being dismissed as a whack job.
“You have tracks on your porch you have written off as animals, especially if you own a dog. If you did own a dog, it’s missing. Cops told you it ran away. You got a garden?”
“Yes,” the certainty had started to leave her voice. “A walled garden.”
“And anytime you’re in there, you feel like you’re being watched.”
At that, her hand came out of her purse empty and she approached me with the fear I had seen in her eyes now on her face.
“How did you know?”
“I’d rather not explain out here,” I said sheepishly running my hand through my sandy brown hair that only started getting flecks of gray. “But you got a…pest problem.”
“And you can do something about it? I’ve had exterminators, cops, nature lovers…even a priest.”
“None of those won’t do you any good and I don’t want to scare ya but it’s more active which is not a good sign.”
For a few moments, I could see the indecision in her eyes. The desperate want to dismiss me as a lunatic but whatever she had heard or seen won over.
“Fine. You can follow me to the house.”
“Mind if I hitch a ride?”
The woman started but then looked at my truck. “Promise. I mean you no harm. I really think you’re in danger.”
That was when I found her name was Isabelle Walker.
We left my truck in long-term parking after she told the attendant that I was a long lost relative and that’s why the change of demeanor. I don’t know if he believed her but at that point, I don’t think he cared. I left my truck with its metallic frame standing tall and proud amidst the rows of other vehicles.
I did not realize how desperate this woman was until we got going on the road. I had loaded myself in the passenger seat after pulling out my military backpack from the war which I also used for my auditing services and tried to look as harmless as a man of my stature could.
For the first fifteen minutes of the drive, her focus was on the lonely road, those beautiful eyes darting to me anytime I shifted my weight. I didn’t want to scare her so it was her that spoke first.
“What is it?”
“I really don’t know but the people in my profession call it a Bone Walker.”
The nose crinkled in disbelief.
“Halloween is not for a few more months, Mister…”
“Jones. Frank Jones.”
The James Bond reference caused her to snort in amusement.
“I don’t know what to tell ya, ma’am, except I’ve dealt with some pretty scary things out there. Normally I’m never this forward as most people try to call the cops on me or dismiss me as a lunatic. I mean, I could be a lunatic but I know what I’ve seen.”
“And that is…?”
“You know. Ghosts, vampires, werewolves. They’re real. They’re not common but real nevertheless.”
There was still the disbelief in Isabelle’s voice but I grew to ignore things like this.
“Sure. I mean, think of all the things you experienced and be open to alternate answers.”
Isabelle was quiet for a few minutes and then sighed. “Either you are telling the truth or you're the biggest liar and I’m a fool that’s not going to live through this night.”
“I promise,” I tried to reassure her. “I’m not going to hurt you.”
After a few more minutes and off the main highway, we approached her home. The large house stood resolute amidst the dense, ancient forest, its weathered exterior a testament to the passing of time. It was a grand structure, its imposing presence commanding attention. The sprawling estate exuded an air of mystery and faded grandeur, as if it held stories whispered through generations.
As we pulled in, the main house loomed before me, its facade adorned with intricate woodwork and worn stone. Ivy crept along the walls, weaving an emerald tapestry that hinted at the passage of years. The windows, framed by elegant yet slightly cracked panes, stared out into the world with a mixture of curiosity and melancholy.
To the side, a large shed stood detached from the main house, its weathered boards echoing tales of forgotten tools and lost endeavors. The wooden structure sagged under the weight of time, its roof covered in a patchwork quilt of moss. Inside, shadows danced amidst remnants of a bygone era, rusty equipment and dusty shelves attesting to the once-bustling activity that had long since ceased.
Not far from the shed, a family cemetery nestled amongst the ancient trees. Tombstones, adorned with intricate carvings and weathered inscriptions, dotted the landscape. The hallowed ground exuded a solemn tranquility, as if time stood still in reverence for those who rested eternally in its embrace. Wisps of fog clung to the grassy knolls, lending an ethereal quality to the sacred space.
At the far end of the property, an old walled garden stood as a testament to the house's former splendor. Once vibrant and lush, the garden now appeared overgrown and untamed. Stone paths meandered through a sea of tangled foliage, leading to hidden nooks and forgotten corners. Dilapidated stone benches, adorned with intricate carvings, sat scattered throughout the garden, silent witnesses to a time when laughter and conversation filled the air.
As I stood amidst the silence of the forest, the house, shed, cemetery, and walled garden formed a tapestry of history and mystery. They were a testament to the ebb and flow of life, the remnants of a bygone era that clung to the present. Within their weathered walls, secrets whispered and memories danced, waiting to be discovered by those who dared to venture into their enigmatic embrace.
“Great place to be haunted, huh?” she said with sarcasm. “My ex left it to me in the divorce. Was only going to be here long enough to sell it but no one wants it and my job wants me to move to this state anyway.”
“Where are you originally from?”
“So, this is definitely a change of scenery for you,”
Isabelle only hummed back at me as she fumbled for her keys in the dying light of evening. I pulled my backpack closer to me as my eyes scanned the treeline where the shadows had begun to deepen. Nothing stood out against the silhouettes of ancient trees which was a good sign. I wasn’t too late.
Stepping through the weathered front door, I entered the interior of the old house, greeted by a mix of nostalgia and faded elegance. The air carried a hint of mustiness, a reminder of the countless years the house had to have witnessed. As my eyes adjusted to the dim light filtering through the stained-glass windows, I could make out the clash between old decor and the modern furniture Isabelle had bought.
The foyer, adorned with a worn, threadbare rug. The walls, once adorned with portraits and intricate wallpaper, now bore the markings of time's passage. The wooden banister of the grand staircase, polished with use, creaked softly under my touch as we made our way towards the living room.
Moving further into the house, I found myself in a spacious living room. Large, ornate windows which would have allowed slivers of daylight to filter through the heavy velvet curtains. The walls were adorned with faded wallpaper. An aged fireplace, its stone mantle adorned with trinkets and old photographs, served as the heart of the room.
“You want some coffee?” Isabelle asked, throwing her keys on to the coffee table. I sat down on her couch and dropped my backpack on it with a clunk.
The kitchen light clicked on and I heard her moving about setting up the coffee pot. The adrenalin was now pumping through me as my mind raced. I’m not going to go into a lot of detail on what a Bone Walker is but it’s a creature that usually haunts the western coast. It being so far out east was strange. I pulled out my old gun bag and unrolled it. My Stevens Model 520-30 “Trench” shotgun was the first thing I reached for as I popped open the internal pouch holding he high flash shells I was glad I packed. It was the startled sound from Isabelle that made me quickly look up.
She stood there with my coffee, eyes locked on the shotgun in my hand. I slowly held up one of the cartridges I was planning to load.
“Flash powder shotgun shells. No load. Just makes a loud noise and a bright white light. What we’re facing lives in the shadows and hates light…normally,” I had heard stories that they could strike in the day but it was extremely rare. She didn’t need to know that.
“Oh,” was her quiet response. “Do…do I need a gun?”
“You know how to use one?”
“Then it’ll do more harm than good. You got any flashlights?”
Isabelle nodded mutely, the gravity of the situation sinking in at the array of weapons and items in my pack laid out in front of her.
“Go get them.”
While she was gone, I quickly unloaded the silver bullets out of my Makarov pistol (a gift from a Viet Cong officer and a story for another time) and placed normal 9mm rounds in the clip. I had it holstered under my jacket with the two back up clips when she returned with three cheap flashlights.
“One in your hand and one in your pocket.”
“In case you drop the one you are holding.”
The woman obeyed silently.
As night fell quickly around us, I slung my shotgun over my shoulder and with Isabelle close, we made our way upstairs. There were tell tale signs I needed to check as the only advantage I had over this thing was the fact it stuck to a pattern. If it was at the stage I thought it was, there would be signs.
“Which room is yours?” I asked.
Isabelle pointed to a door down the hallway across from a large window. Approaching it, I quickly shined my flashlight at the mahogany door frame. It was the glint that caught my eye. Deep gouges in the wood.
“What’s that?” she asked.
“Claw marks,” I responded. There was no use sugar coating anything now.
“This thing was in my house?” Isabelle said horrified.
“For the last few weeks now,” I said, my nose picking up the faint odor of dirt and mud.
“Why didn’t it attack me then?”
“It wasn’t time.”
Talking was going to be the only thing to keep her focused. I had felt the world shift a bit as night fell and I needed her not to panic.
“Bone Walkers are ritualistic creatures. They are very choosy over their prey. It can take a month or two before they move in. That’s why they are so hard to catch.”
“Criteria? Like what?”
“We don’t know.”
That was the honest truth. The only reason we knew their existence and patterns was thanks to blind luck and people surviving their encounters. I showed my light around looking for other signs. Discolored stains in the corners where shadows would naturally form, healthy moss and mold that shouldn’t be there. I found a patch around her bed. She did not notice and I did not want to tell her that it probably stood over her through the night watching her sleep. The sooner I buried this thing, the better.
There was a trill of terror in Isabelle’s voice and I immediately looked to where she was. The woman was standing by her bedroom window staring out at something. I quickly moved and spotted what she saw. In the forest, at the edge of the shadow cast by the moonlight was an almost, imperceptible form. It stood nine feet, hunched over like a broken scarecrow, its owl like eyes staring back at us.
“Shit,” I muttered. Thank god we had turned on the lights as we went.
It was the flash of light and the crack of thunder that heralded the arrival of the storm. The lights of this old houses flickered which caused my belly to flop a few times. My brain was on fire as I glanced back from the lightbulb to where the creature was and found it had vanished.
“Where did it go?”
I did not have time to explain as another crack of lightning caused the lights to dim. I grabbed Isabelle roughly by the arm and yanked her back down the hallway towards the living room where I had left my stuff. We barely made it to the living room when the lights dimmed low. I grasped the glow sticks out of the bag, cracked a handful and scattered them about, their bright yellow light beginning to glow. The power then went out bathing us only in the eerie glow of the emergency lighting.
As we waited in breathless anticipation, the storm struck, its wrath manifesting in torrential rain. The mansion seemed to respond, succumbing to a power outage that plunged us into an abyss of blackness only moments before.
A trill of terror coursed through me. I knew this Bone Walker thrived in darkness, using it as a cloak to conceal its malevolence. We auditors were not sure if it actually teleported or it preferred to move in pitch darkness. I just knew that the black was our biggest threat.
For a few moments, we could only hear the ragged breathing of the two of us being drowned out by the pounding rain against shingle and glass. Isabelle had wound her hand into my jacket pocket and was gripping it tightly, I could feel her shaking with terror. I kept my shotgun gripped tightly in my hand listening for the tell tale sound of its arrival.
It was the movement out of the corner of my eye and the fact her grip got tighter on my jacket. I swiftly turned on my high-powered flashlight as I spun around and the brilliant beam pierced the obscure corner of the room. No matter what I had read or seen before did not prepare me for what I saw.
It stood there in the corner, its eight foot height engulfing that section of the house. My eyes strained as it appeared the thing was struggling to stay in focus. Its arms were too long for its body, spindly and almost to the floor while the legs appeared backwards giving it a strange forward leaning look. It wore a hunter’s long coat and trousers but through the rips and tears I could make out something squirming and moving underneath. The air filled with the stench of decaying plants and diseased vegetation. Its face was covered with what looked like the remnants of a cheap bandanna but its owl-like eyes gleaned back with malevolence.
Isabelle whimpered, her fear palpable in the room and the Bone Walker lunged toward us. Even though my fear was ripping through me like an unstoppable train, I had the sense to pull the trigger of my shotgun aimed in its direction. The flash and resounding roar painted the entire room in a brilliant black and white shadow causing every corner and edge to appear thick and vivid. The creature screamed and fell to the side into the shadow not illuminated by the weapon’s fire.
Isabelle had thrown herself on the couch and was huddled there, trembling with terror, while I moved quickly to crack a few more glow sticks and toss them into the dark corners of the room. In one, I saw its foot recoil back into the kitchen where it was darker than night itself. This was quicker than I had anticipated. The plans I had been formulating on the drive were no longer viable. I wanted to lure it to where I controlled the battlefield but that was not an option anymore. This had become a cat and mouse game and I knew this was with a predator I could not even hope to understand and had years to hone.
Out of the kitchen again this thing charged forward, relentless in its pursuit, it was trying to find a way around my light barrier which only appeared to slow it down. With shaking hands, I fired several more rounds, each blast forcing the creature to retreat and the girl to scream in terror. As soon as it retreated to a dark part of the house, I turned to where the woman of the house had been. To my horror, Isabelle's fear had gotten the best of her. In that moment of panic, she darted from the safety of the light, towards the hallway and the door outside.
“Isabelle! Stop!” I yelled trying to command her back with my voice but I doubted she heard me. Between the abject horror and the relentless rain, she was going to take her chance. A chance I knew she did not have.
I only took a step when I sensed it. The musty smell of an organic landfill overwhelmed me as the form silently darted past me, its long arm clobbering me up the side of the head. The world spun as pain burst through my brain. I felt the world tilt and fall heavily to the ground, flashlight and shotgun falling away.
As I slipped in and out of consciousness, I knew I was a sitting duck for this thing. There was no way for me to stop it from ripping me to shreds like some of the corpses I had seen. As I blinked, I came to my senses and realized I was alone. How long I had actually been on the ground, I did not know.
I sat up, my head pounding and I could see the door hanging open, the wind slamming the door on its hinges and the rain soaking the hallway floor. Struggling, I found my flashlight and gun and pulled myself together.
There was a slim chance that Isabelle was still alive. I had to think. Where would it go? I ran all the stories I could think of and then it hit me. The garden. The walled garden.
I charged into the rain-soaked night. I sprinted toward the enclosed garden at the edge of the property. As I grew closer, I saw that the rusted door was open and hope flickered in my soul. As I came to a stop, I brought my flashlight up again with my shotgun and saw it.
This creature stood there in the middle of the overgrown garden, its massive clawed hand wrapped around Isabelle’s chest and holding her up. Out from under its bandanna mask, putrid vines had appeared and led up to Isabelle’s face where they were forcing their way down her throat and up her nose. I could see the wide terror in her eyes as vines were snaking their way around her waist and I did not want to think about what they were planning to do.
I brought up the shotgun again and fired. Knowing that I had distance, the flash of light caught the creature by surprise. It shrieked as it fell back. Trying desperately not to release its prey. I did not hesitate to grab the machete at my side and hack at its arm until Isabelle fell down free of it.
It’s claw swiped at me striking me on the leg and easily tearing through my pants leaving bloody lacerations but I put the weapon point blank and fired another round. I do not know if it was the flash, the combination of the creature, or that the almighty above was looking out for me, but the creature caught ablaze from the spark.
It fell back swinging wildly as the fire spread unnaturally fast catching the plants around it on fire. Within a matter of seconds, the walled garden had become ablaze with the bone walker in the center. As I ripped the vines out of Isabelle’s mouth and dragged her towards the door, I looked up to see those owl-like eyes looking at me with such abject hatred that the look stick with me today.
I honestly don’t know how we survived. I had helped Isabelle to her porch and we both passed out against our will from the sheer terror and exhaustion. We were awoken by the sound of a siren. The lights had come back on sometime in our sleep and the rain had drifted off to a comforting drizzle. The fire was still raging in the garden but contained by the ancient walls. At least two fire trucks, an ambulance and cops were flying up the private road towards us.
This entire hunt had been ill-planned and stupid. I knew it. As the cops approached with their hand on their pistols, I knew that I had allowed my own ego to get in the way. I should have taken Isabelle somewhere else until I had done a proper reconnaissance. I shouldn’t have taken her home where it was waiting. And now, the cops were looking at two thoroughly soaked humans, one a trucker with a wound and a gun and a young lady in distress. I was pretty sure I was going to go to jail.
“Isabelle?” One of the cops and his voice caused her to sit up, relief washing over her.
“Derek!” she wailed. “We were attacked! In the garden!”
Another two cops that had arrived had taken off in that direction while Derek helped the girl up and took her towards the ambulance. The other cop with a comically large mustache looked at me with keen eyes, his hand still on his pistol, sergeant stripes glowing in the light.
“Yeah,” I said, sitting up slowly and keeping my hand away from the shotgun and trying not to show the one under my jacket. “Someone came after Mrs. Walker. They were in the garden.”
The cop watched me closely but there seemed to be a recognition in his eyes.
“You by any chance Frank Jones?”
My heart jumped and I must have looked startled as the cop’s face broke into a smile. To my relief, his hand fell away from his holstered sidearm.
“I’ll take that for a yes. My guess is you don’t remember me. Clay Wilson. Santa Fe PD, about six years ago. You helped my partner with a...problem. Nellie Nelson?”
I knew the name but the face escaped me.
“She told me you helped her audit a police union building.”
“Ah, yes,” I said, remembering dealing with the wraith and the twinge in my right arm from it’s bite.
The cop looked towards the fire that was slowly being put out by the fire fighters.
“Any chance this will be one of your audits?”
He seemed to think for a few minutes and then nodded.
“Then I think you need to grab that shotgun of yours and hitch a ride with me before too many people ask questions. Whatcha think?”
I nodded. I was not going to look a gift horse in the mouth. I collected my stuff quickly from the living room and made my way back out where he was waiting. As I limped with the cop to his car, I looked towards Isabelle who was being held by the other. She gave me a look of thankfulness as the cop looked at his partner with confusion.
“Her brother’s got her,” Clay said, opening the back door for me. I was not gonna argue or fight. If he took me to jail or not.
And that was it. My leg was not as bad off as I thought and wrapped it in the back of the police car. Clay only asked where I wanted to go and he took me back to my truck. With that time, I was back on the road with that small town in the rear view mirror.
I never did find out what happened to Isabelle after that, if another creature came looking for her or if she had a chance to live in peace. I just knew that we both barely made it out alive and that was due to my own stupidity. I was furious with myself for weeks after that and told myself I wouldn’t put another person in jeopardy like that again. At least, despite my idiocy, another life was saved and another monster was put in the ground...I hoped. I never did find out if they found a body
Hello everyone. I’m posting this now because I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be able to use Reddit. Mods, bare with me. I want to thank this community as a whole for being so awesome. I found this place the night Alex’s last episode aired. I was looking for people who may have felt the same way I did, and I landed here. This place has been amazing. You have all been nothing but supportive of my lifelong dream. You’ve given advice, shared your own experiences, and helped me feel better when the universe seemed bent on keeping me discouraged. Thank you for that. I know I’m not easy to deal with when my emotions start running things instead of my brain. I love this community as a whole, and it has been awesome to be a part of it. I’m going to miss peeking at the recaps and helping you guys cheer on our favorite players. Thank each and every one of you for letting me be a part of this.
i got my lashes filled 2 weeks ago after a several month hiatus from getting extensions done. it was my first volume set after getting only hybrids done before and i noticed my eyes were super irritated in the first 24 hours. i figured it was the glue and that once it was fully dry i wouldnt have any more issues.
after 24 hours i had much less irritation but it was still there, and my vision was also quite a bit blurrier. i had some itching on the lash line that was bothering me and it looked as if the skin on my lash line was peeling. i kept consistent with my daily shampooing of the lashes tho and kinda tried to ride it out.
its been like 2.5 weeks now and the itching got pretty bad so i decided to take a look at what was going on. my skin was definitely peeling and unable to shed bc of the lash extensions in the way. i ended up removing a lot of them as best as i could and got the skin buildup off, but of course my eyes r pretty sore now but i feel much better and my vision is genuinely sm better.
idk if my lash tech used new glue or products bc i never had reactions like this in the past, though im curious if anyone else has had this issue and what their solution is? i rly do enjoy lash extensions but obviously i wont continue getting them if my eye health is at jeopardy.
i also researched a little about this and it seems like i mightve been dealing with blepharitis caused by an allergic reaction to the lash glue.
Continued from Part 5
Let’s play Jeopardy where Jay Wilds’ life was literally in jeopardy. I’ll take "Ironic shit that Adnan said" for $1000. The answer is “pathetic.” DING! What is the word a murderer who covered his tracks says to his unwitting patsy used to carry out the murder plot who was subsequently used by the police and prosecutors to frame the murderer for the crime that the murderer actually committed? Did you follow that? Is it more clear to you now after reading this post why Adnan directed that insult at Jay? Is Jay still the liar you thought he was? Ironically, Jay was the least pathetic person in that courtroom.
Killing this bright young woman because of his fragile ego...Yeah, Adnan is pretty fucking pathetic. But did the prosecution prove that he committed the crime? Yes, but only with the help of wildly fabricated testimony. Testimony that they invented and forced a poor witness into repeating. Testimony that foisted knowledge on Jay that he did not have and actions that he did not perform. Adnan was not the only person whom the cops framed in this case. They also framed Jay. Yes, Jay was forced to plead guilty to a lesser crime, but he was forced to participate in his own framing
. That’s fucked up. As to Adnan, he ended up doing the full weight for what should have been shared by at least two of his actual accomplices. That part was completely in Adnan’s control. He had the choice to give up his accomplices, but he chose not to. That choice had serious repercussions on the victims whom Bilal subsequently victimized.
Pathetic is far too kind a word to ascribe to Bilal. I hate that this child molesting rapist has this name. Bilal. It was the name of a black man who was born into slavery in Saudi Arabia 14 centuries ago. While enslaved, Bilal had the good fortune to hear the message preached by the Prophet Muhammad and was among the earliest to embrace Islam. His master who practiced idolatry severely persecuted Bilal. He was whipped and tortured, but would not renounce his faith. The Prophet’s closest friend, Abu Bakr, a wealthy man whose generosity far exceeded the size of his wallet, paid the master to set Bilal free. At a time when racial equality was an incomprehensible concept among the Arabs, this black man became one of the closest and most trusted companions of the Prophet. Because of his beautiful voice, he had the honor of being designated as the person who called the Muslims to prayers. THAT
is who I want to think of when I hear the name, “Bilal.” Not this disgusting prick who used faith to lure his victims.
In a perfect world, Adnan would plead guilty and give up his accomplices. In exchange for the plea and information he would be released for time served. He’s already done 24 years starting when he was 17. Had me made such a plea from the start he would likely have been out 15 years ago. Bilal would get life attached to his sentence because no one is safe when that fucker is walking around free. The (at least) third accomplice would get five years for having advanced knowledge of and assisting in the planning of the murder. If he did more than drive Adnan from the Park N Ride to Best Buy, he should do more time in proportion to his participation.
Speaking directly to Adnan: the first sentence of the next paragraph notwithstanding, people are starting to come around and figuring out what really happened 24 years ago. Get ahead of it, man. Tell the world about Bilal's role. Stop carrying the weight of all these lies on your back. Yeah, you got fucked, but you did the crime. Show us that some of the Quran that you memorized actually penetrated your heart. Don't wield it like the monster who victimized you.
In our imperfect world, Adnan should have never been convicted.
Yes, he did the crime, but the police and prosecutors failed spectacularly in doing their jobs. That is actually inaccurate. What they did was criminal. They cannot be allowed to do what they did in this case. Sure, cops fix paperwork in cases all the time to make sure the right person goes to jail. When they know a perp did the crime, it’s not unusual for them to cut corners to see that justice is done. That is not what happened here.
My problem in this case is that Ritz and Macgillivary did not have nearly as much information as we do today. At the outset of this post, I lay out why Adnan was involved in Hae’s murder. The cops didn’t have the bullshit Asia letters.
They were not aware that Adnan had produced evidence proving that he had knowledge of when Hae Min Lee was murdered. They did not begin to scratch the surface of Bilal’s involvement. They only had the word of a kid who said that he saw Hae’s dead body in a trunk without any corroborating eye witnesses. Jay did not witness Hae being murdered. He did not know when she was murdered. He did not know where she was murdered. He did not know where she was buried. He barely knew where her car could be found. Based on the information the detectives actually received from Jay, they knew that others besides Adnan were involved. I totally understand that the cops do not have an unlimited amount of time to clear such a big case. I understand the pressure they were under to find the killer. But none of that condones what they did here. What the police and prosecutors did to Jay and how they used him was criminal. They literally forced him to make up criminal acts allegedly committed by Adnan and himself. To say that Jay had at least a civil rights claim under Section 1983 against Baltimore County is a massive understatement.
This was not a question of fudging a minor detail to secure a conviction. It was taking the evidence they had against Adnan from possible misdemeanor territory to fabricating evidence guaranteeing the most serious charge that can be levied against a defendant. Fuck that. And let them explain why they did not pursue the accomplice angle to the victims who Bilal raped from 1999 until he was arrested in 2016. The cops got lucky and nailed one of the people involved in this homicide. Knowing that they are capable of such malfeasance, how many defendants did these fuckers put away who are actually innocent?
The police and prosecutors knowingly elevated Jay to playing a more serious accessory after the fact than he really was. "Pathetic" does not begin to describe their actions. Sadly, a variation of the shit they pulled in this case happens every day--albeit not always as egregious. We just don’t hear about it because every case is not a global phenomenon and is not scrutinized by obsessive lunatics. I already said enough about the prosecutors from Urick to Mosby. With few exceptions, most prosecutors are pathetic. Fixing the criminal justice system is beyond the scope of this post.
This brings me to one of the biggest qualms that I had in writing this all out. As much as I hate what the police and prosecutors did in this case, I had to reconcile that with the comfort that they bring to the victim’s family. I’ve seen first-hand how the cops and prosecutors forge relationships with victims’ families. They let them know that they are not alone. They let the families know that they will do whatever it takes to bring to justice those responsible for taking away the people the families loved. Even when the police/prosecutors motives are to get a solid victim impact statement to secure a harsh sentence to run up their stats, their support animal-like function is undeniable. Now put that in the context of Hae’s family.
I cannot begin to imagine the living nightmare that Hae Min Lee’s family has suffered for the past 24 years. They trusted the cops and the prosecutors from the day Hae disappeared. The reports of the daily check-ins with the cops when it was a missing persons case are excruciating to read. The verdict finally gave them closure 23 years ago. Then the fucking podcast dropped. Suddenly, their wounds were torn open in the most public and ugly way. The killer of their daughtesisteniece was being hailed a victim. Insane speculative stories including some suggesting their involvement in Hae's murder were being spun. Those responsible for the perception that Adnan was unjustly imprisoned were making the rounds on television talk shows, on the lecture circuit, collecting awards, and getting lucrative book deals. These grief profiteers pay occasional lip service mentioning the deep sympathy they feel for Hae’s family. I’ll go out on a limb and say that Hae’s family would rather they keep their affected sympathy, fuck off and disappear. All this time, the only people who were likely a source of solace for the family in this maelstrom of tragedy were the police and prosecutors. I did not want to take that away from her family. Sure, this is just a bunch of stupid posts from an anonymous rando that will likely never reach anyone of consequence, but it may. I did not want to be responsible for ruining the only people Hae’s family believed were in their corner.
Thus, I struggled with balancing the value of the information contained in this post against the possible damage it may do to Hae’s family. Is it fair to take away the only bright spot for them by revealing that those they trusted and relied upon for support are complete shit-bags? I had to stew in that for a while. But what they did to Jay. What they and their ilk did and will continue to do to others–especially those who are actually innocent–is too high a price. They need to be called out. My sincerest apologies to any member of Hae’s family who has the misfortune of reading this.
I’ve already been mean enough to Rabia in other posts. While I do not in any way condone what she did, who knows what I would have done if I were in her place and my idiot brother got himself mixed up in this shit. I hope this series of posts on this free platform at least demonstrates that I would not have monetized this tragedy. But that is not entirely fair. Rabia was trying to cover for her idiot brother before there was money in it. At the end of the day, Adnan is most certainly responsible for Hae’s murder. But he also got fucked by the criminal justice system. It would have been nice if Rabia focused her efforts on calling out some of the shit raised in this post. But she cannot because it requires acknowledging some truths that she is unable to accept. These are the same truths I asked the good people who identify as “innocenters” to consider. It requires accepting that the cops framed a person who actually participated in the murder.
As to my refusal to find a way to monetize my analysis, it has less to do with my ethics than the fact that there is almost never any money behind the truth. The dollars are always behind the lie. Careers and entire industries are built on lies. We wage wars based on lies. Anyone who threatens the gravy train is attacked and destroyed. That said, as this post demonstrates, things are not always black and white. There is no thread of absolute truth in my posts. I try to explain what happened based on the information that is available. Additional information may trickle down that may require me to adjust my analysis (but I'm done publicly writing about this shit). I’m not the burning bush. My goal is to inform and entertain. If I succeeded in the latter, then yeah–shame on me for not figuring out how to make a buck out of this shit.
Enough with the Innocenter vs. Guilter Shit
We are not exempt from the “pathetic” characterization. With a few exceptions, I’ve probably wasted more time on this case than anyone else on this sub. That’s pretty fucking pathetic. I tell myself that this analysis is to serve a greater purpose. To demonstrate how this case captures the zeitgeist of who and what we have become as a society. For what? To help move the needle for a few dozen people who read my ramblings? At the end of the day this is an escape from the shit that I’m supposed to be doing and an outlet to practice my writing and critical thinking skills. It is also an exorcism of sorts because once I get an idea in my head, I have a difficult time focusing on anything else unless and until I write it out. For those of you who were crazy enough to read my previous posts, you might see the evolutionary arc where I have consciously tried to take a less biased approach and see the field more objectively. That turned out to be the key that unlocked this mystery. Jesus..."mystery." Like I cracked some major case. If you administered an enema to this global phenomenon, it would disappear from existence.
Stripping ourselves of our allegiances and biases for guilt or innocence is the only way to see this case for what it is. Assuming that this case is binary where only one side is right and the other is wrong gets you nowhere. The quote at the beginning of this post is not just me beating off to NYPD blue. Availing yourself of the notion that no one is always a liar and no one is always corrupt is key to understanding that there is no side with which you would want to align in this case. Accordingly, in view of what actually happened, regarding oneself as a “guilter” or an “innocenter” is kinda pathetic–not for holding an opinion as much as hating someone for not exclusively sharing yours. I’ve had a lot of shit flung at me by those who disagree with my analysis. And I sure as hell gave it back, but to what end? I’ve tried to avoid getting into verbal scraps in the public comments and made efforts to engage privately with individuals who think I’m full of shit. Sometimes I was ghosted. Sometimes I fell prey to my boorish self and unloaded on my poorly armed detractors. My inability to suffer fools gladly is something I need to work on. But sometimes I ended up meeting some very cool and interesting people. You guys know who you are. I hate that I need to make a conscious decision not to be a prick and leave open the possibility that I might actually like these assholes that I’m telling to go fuck themselves. I need to be better than that. There is more than enough anger on the internet without my contributing to it.