A week later, another anonymous tip came into the station about where the body of a local John could be found.
Gary and McAvoy hurried to the scene and found the John laying in an alley. His throat had been cut almost to the point of decapitation. Since it was early in the watch, McAvoy still had a few of his wits about him. He said “well, this is what I would call poetic justice.”
The coroner had already arrived and estimated the time of death at about two o’clock in the morning. Chris and Floyd were both in the area when they heard the call come over the radio and decided to stop by.
Gary walked over to Floyd and told him that the body had been found by “Sammy the Rat.” He was one of the local homeless. He got that name because he lived in the alley with rats. He would share bits of food he had scrounged from the dumpster with them, but if he hadn’t found anything in several days, he would catch one and eat it.
Sometimes he would walk through town with one or two clinging to his coat. If they weren’t there the next day, everybody knew that Sammy had gotten hungry and the rat population had decreased by a few.
Chris walked over while Gary was trying to get Sammy to tell him if he had seen anything that night. Sammy said “yeah, yeah, I think I seen something but it wasn’t like anything I ever seen before.”
Chris stooped down and said “I bet you saw a beautiful, willowy blonde, didn’t you” and then broke out into a loud, mocking laughter.
Sammy looked up and gestured with his hand as if he was trying to touch something and said “yeah, a beautiful, ‘widowy’ blonde.”
Chris stood up and said in a disgusted voice “this guy’s obviously been talking to baggy pants John.”
“Who’s baggy pants John?” Sammy asked. Gary said “can you just tell me what you saw?” Sammy said “I think she was an angel.”
Chris spread his arms out and said “so, did she have wings?” Sammy said “I didn’t see any. She just kind of floated by but she wasn’t high up.” Chris said “oh. So she was one of those angels like in the song. You know. Angels flying too close to the ground.”
Sammy said “yeah, like that.” Gary was annoyed with Chris and waved him off.
After Chris left, Gary tried again to get Sammy to tell him a bit more. Sammy said “well, I was just laying here with Marci and Poodle.” Gary said “wait. Who are Marci and Poodle?” Sammy said “they’re two of my rats. I had just drifted off to sleep when I thought I heard a noise.”
Gary said “what kind of noise?” Sammy said “a kind of thump.” Gary said “a thump?” Sammy said “yeah, like somebody falling down but I was sleepy so I can’t be sure.”
“Then what?” said Gary. Sammy said “then I looked up and I saw this angel coming down the alley. I thought she was coming for me but she on walked by, so I figured the good Lord wasn’t after sending for me yet.”
Gary walked over to Floyd and said “looks like we have an angel sighting. I guess it’s going to be one of those days.”
Floyds’ walkie sounded and he said “geeze. Stella’s been robbed again.”
To be continued________________________________