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Murder on the Promenade

Posted on Sat Apr 30th, 2016 @ 8:08am by Lieutenant Commander Thomas Byrne & Warrant Officer Marcus Lazlo & Master Chief Petty Officer Arathenar ch’Darnath & Chief Warrant Officer Vortai Gotte

Mission: Brave New World
Location: Laux's Fine Jewelry [Deck 621]

"Call coming in from SC-Thirteen, sir." Warrant Officer T'Hain reported in her usual stoic tone from the communications console. It had been lighting up like a Christmas tree since civilians had started returning to their homes and businesses.

Gunning sighed and tore himself away from supervising Lieutenant Bayncroft's attempts to placate an enraged bar owner who had found their stock smashed in the wake of a skirmish between Starfleet security forces and Sojourner boarders.

"What have we got, Warrant?" He asked, looking over the Vulcan's shoulder. "SC-Thirteen reports a possible code One-Eight-Seven on Deck Six-Two-One."

Gunning had instigated a system of codes for both the Security Centres around the station and the crimes they reported. After the Sojourner boarding there was plenty of paranoia to go around. Everyone thought they were being listened to and Gunning didn't want anyone getting the jump on his teams. "They're requesting a Crime Scene Unit and your presence, sir."

"Tell them we'll be down soon." Gunning glanced across the room and realised he'd need some assistance. "ch'Darnath - you're with me. Notify the CSU as well."

The Andorian Master at Arms was checking the inventory reports from the various weapons lockers around the starbase; he had a sneaking suspicion that he'd be chasing up missing phasers for months. At the call of his name, he looked up, antennae bending toward the sound of the voice, and nodded. "You got it, sir," he said as he heaved himself out of his chair and trotted off to catch up with the security chief.

[Laux's Fine Jewelry, Deck 621]

"Careful." Gunning said as he carefully climbed through what remained of the stained glass door of Laux's Fine Jewelry on deck 621. He had already taken the initial discovery notes and other information from Lieutenant Madigan and knew that he was to expect a body behind the counter of the store.

The store itself was incredibly well-appointed. Deep-hued oak cases stood in perfect lines across the wide floor, all drawing the eye toward the wide counter at the end. Glass littered the floor and Gunning had to be incredibly careful not to cause any more damage as he picked his way toward the counter, noting the smashed display cases as he went.

It was quite a mess alright, but ch'Darnath had seen worse on the starbase since the attack. At least the damage here was mostly material and not organic. Although, despite the shattered glass and fractured cabinets, it wasn't only material damage inside this store. As he carefully followed Gunning to the counter, his eyes scanned around for anything out of place; anything you might not expect to see inside the ruins of a jewelry store, at least.

"Quite the mess." Gunning said as he stopped short of the small throng of security officers who were clearly standing around the body drawing proverbial straws of who would have to transport it. "Looks like a simple case of looting gone bad." He added in the manner you might remark upon a particularly indifferent steak dinner.

"Doesn't seem like looting to me," A striking older man said as he walked into the store. "Detective Marcus Lazlo," He said. "Just got transferred here. I don't think we've had the pleasure, Commander," He said offering Gunning a hand to shake. He was obviously civilian - despite the uniform - but he carried himself with an air of confidence that indicated this wasn't his first trip to the rodeo.

"Ahh, Lazlo." Gunning had put in for an experienced investigator to be assigned to his team and of his three person shortlist, Marcus Lazlo was the best candidate. He shook the offered hand and motioned toward ch'Darnath. "Master-at-Arms, Arathenar ch'Darnath."

"Pleasure to meet you, ch'Darnath," Lazlo replied with a nod and a friendly wave to the man.

"If it's not looting then it's sure supposed to look that way," Gunning mused once the niceties were out of the way. All of that could wait though as he caught the eye of the Crime Scene Unit's Lead Forensic Specialist, Chief Warrant Officer Vortai Gotte, a Ventaxian woman whom Gunning was sure Drusus had only assigned him as some kind of sick joke. "What have we got, Vortai?"

She smiled a half-smile at him using her first name, as she had asked, and straightened up as the three men rounded the counter to be greeted with the grizzly sight of the victim. He was old - possibly in his sixties or even early seventies - and flecks of dried blood were all around his mouth where the wound had sent it into his throat.

The cause of death seemed pretty obvious at a glance - blood loss. He was lying in a pool of half-congealed, sickly smelling blood which had once oozed from what looked like several stab wounds in his chest. "I take it you don't need me to assign C.o.D." Gotte greeted them sarcastically.

"Looks like a stabbing to me." Gunning shot back sarcastically, stepping over the body and narrowly avoiding the blood. "Any idea of time of death?"

"Judging by the blood, not more than a few hours. Madigan's lot found him when they were doing sweeps about half an hour ago so I don't think we missed the killer by much."

"That's an angry kill," Lazlo replied, pointing at the stabs. "That's not an 'I've been caught' killing. That's angry, that's personal," He said. He looked around at the store some and then paused and looked back at Gunning, "Wasn't this area supposed to be evacuated during the time of the attack?" He asked.

"As far as the records show it was. If it's been a matter of hours then we're looking at a pretty slim window between the end of the confinement order and the murder." Gunning replied, dropping to his haunches over the body and glancing at the wounds. Lazlo was right for sure, the stab wounds were furious, ragged in some places from the sheer force of the motion. "If we're not looking at a disturbed robber then we're looking for someone who really holds a grudge."

"I'm coming into this one a little blind, Boss," Lazlo replied, casually walking around the jewlery boutique, and bending over one and observing it closely, "What do we know about our Vic?"

"Do we even have an I.D.?" Gunning looked up at Gotte.

The reply was simple. "Lothar Laux. He's the owner."

"Well we know that much." Gunning said as he stood up. The rest of the CSU were now arriving and setting up their holocameras and other equipment which would map the entire crime scene into something which could be recreated on the holodeck. "We'll need to have a word with his family." His combadge chirped, interrupting whatever his next thought would be, and he stepped away from the group to take the call in relative privacy.

"I'm afraid I'll have to leave this with you," he said when he rejoined the group. "Talk to his family, any employees - see what we can find out about him. See if there's anything else we can learn from the body once you get it to the morgue, too," he said, directing his last comment at Gotte, before turning and leaving the crime scene to his team.

Commander Jordan Gunning
Chief of Security

Warrant Officer Marcus Lazlo
PNPC Played by Austin
Criminal Investigator

Master Chief Arathenar ch'Darnath
PNPC Played by Drusus


Chief Warrant Officer Vortai Gotte (NPC)
Lead Forensic Specialist
Starbase 332


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