Sunday, November 11, 2012

More Cops and Ghosts

  Bet you've just been waiting with bated breath for my next installment, huh? Sure. Well, I do have that picture of me in the Jefferson, Texas, City Jail that I use for publicity. That was pretty close to actually being locked up.

  I was out in Jefferson doing research for Dead Man Talking, the first of my Dead Man Mysteries. It's set there, and I wanted to be as realistic as possible about how the local law enforcement worked. My husband and I met with a wonderful policeman, Sergeant Donnie Vallery of the Jefferson Police Department. Besides telling us great stories full of information, he allowed us to go back into the four holding cells. I imagine the fact they were empty of prisoners gave us that opportunity, but I didn't argue.
  Immediately, I asked if I could go inside one of the cells, to see what it felt like. He agreed, and even closed the door on me. I'll never forget that clunk. I've read about it in books, but you just can't describe it. Inside the cell were two bunks against the wall, the mattresses covered in ugly, hard green plastic. On the back wall sat a urinal. That's it. There was a small window in the door (see above), and after I stood there taking in the atmosphere (or lack thereof) for a few minutes, lucky for my sanity Donnie asked through that window, "You all right in there?"
  I sighed. "Yeah, I guess so. It's so small."
  "Come over here and stick your hands through the window," he said. Now, I had no idea that he and my husband had been collaborating, but I should have known my husband! And Donnie was male, also.
  I complied, and Donnie snapped the handcuffs around my wrists.
  "How does that feel?" he asked.
  "Really weird," I said.
  Then my husband said to Donnie, "What would you take to lose that handcuff key?"
  I thought Donnie would laugh, but I could see his face, contemplating his answer. "What would you give me?" he asked.
  "Hey!" I called, shaking my bound hands. But they whispered together for a long while, then Donnie sighed.
  "I guess we better let her go," he said.
  "Yeah," my husband agreed. "I value my hide too much to leave her in there any longer."
  So they "turned me loose." It's fun looking back on it, but I sure wouldn't want to really be locked away.
  Another time I had a run-in with the police was at Goshen Cemetery, that cemetery where I won't take anyone unless they agree to wear a protection packet.
  (Let me explain something here. I may be using the word "cop" interchangeably with "police," but I respect all those brave law enforcement men and women who protect us, so "cop" is not used in a derogatory way.)
  Anyway, we were deep inside Goshen when we heard a car pull into the parking lot. A few minutes later, someone with a powerful flashlight entered the cemetery. He walked quickly toward us, keeping that light shined straight at our group. When he got close enough that the light hurt my eyes, I called, "Turn that darn light out! It's hurting my eyes!"
  "Police!" he replied.
  "Oops," I whispered.
  Luckily, Timmy, our equipment tech, took over. "Let me talk to him," he said. "I know most of the cops and they know me."
  Timmy introduced himself to the cop, and a few minutes later, we were deep in a discussion with him about ghosts and paranormal investigating. He even asked us to give him a copy of our diary from that night, which Timmy delivered for him.
  Another time the cops confronted us was October 30, 2012, when we were out at Dry Creek on the night before Halloween. Two cars pulled in this time, and they sat there for a long while, shining their headlights on us. One of our group said, "I guess we better pick up our stuff and leave."
  "Huh uh," I said, although I knew he was probably envisioning our names plastered all over the local paper. "Let them come to us."
  I assumed they were running my tags, but I don't have any warrants out, so I wasn't worried. Finally, they got out and approached us, shining those darned lights at us. This time, I just lifted my hand to shade my eyes, saying (loud enough that I hoped they would hear), "I wish they'd shine those lights down!"
  I guess they heard, or maybe it was just sop (standard operating procedure). "Sheriff's deputies!" they yelled back at me.
  I just sighed. What would be, would be.
  Turned out, they were just as interested as the cop at Goshen in our investigation. They hung around talking to us and watching the ghosts talk back through our flashlights until they got another call.
  Oh, I just remembered another incident, but I'll have to leave that one until next time. For now, I need to get back to work on the web site. I'm also having Angela re-do some of my covers (two on the Diaries, Grave Yarns and Volume II; the rest on the romances). Those are covers I did myself, and I'm not happy with them. Angela does much better work, and she will fix them up for me. I'm also trying to learn to chop out some portions of our investigation dvd's and upload them. So I've got lots to do to keep me out of trouble and away from the eyes of the cops.
  Hope you enjoy reading the books, and if you feel so inclined, leave a review on the site where you got the book. Thanks a bunch!!
  T. M.

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