When a British subject kills the daughtor of the Govonor Texas. The clash starts.
| Chapter One.|
James “Jimmy” Thomas sat in his office in the Texas statehouse. He was the head of security for the governor. The current governor Dean Watts was currently at his ranch outside Lubbock. Thomas was busy with schedule and security details at the moment. Thomas was a career lawman starting just after college. He had many postings with the Texas Highway Patrol Service. Now almost 20 years into his career he now headed the Governor protective detail. The job was everything he wanted and more. Jimmy was well known and respected. A radio call got his attention “Five Oh Five to Capitol?”
The dispatcher came back quickly “Five oh Five.”
“Yes mam I need all units to the residence we have an emergency down here.”
Jimmy was already on his feet running. The radio was already alive “Capitol all units Five oh Five request assistance at the residence! Jimmy pressed the transmit button and spoke “Five Hundred is enroute.”
“Ten four Jimmy.”
The dispatcher had already pressed a button and Austin EMS was rolling to the Governor’s mansion. Jimmy’s patrol car sped thru the check point. He transmitted “Five hundred to Five Oh two go to security alert!”
Instantly the officer in the security shack took up defensive position near the gate.
Jimmy was out of his car his service weapon ready. He met the officer known as five oh five. His name was Gabe Dewitt. “Ok Gabe what is it?”
Dewitt led Jimmy to an upstairs study. Another Officer was already there. On the floor was Sue Ellen Watts the Governor’s daughter. “Oh Christ!” Jimmy moved in to check for a pulse. “Jimmy she’s gone!”
Jimmy transmitted “Five hundred to units Security alert and show Wildflower deceased repeat show Wildflower Deceased.”
“Gabe close it all off I want this place lock down now.”
British Airways ticket agents were already checking in passengers for evening service to Heathrow.
A man joined the First Class ticket line. He checked in without incident and moved toward the TSA checkpoint. To everyone this man was just another businessman.
The gunshot hit right on. Well he was good. A voice yelled at him “Hey Ellis you got a call!”
Sam Emmett Ellis turned and sighed “Dang it I told y’all not to bother me while I am shooting.”
“Hey look it’s ah Jimmy over at the Governor’s detail.”
Ellis realized this was important.
Ellis walked to his office. He reached for the phone “Hey Jimmy you got me on the range.”
The voice was stern and to the point “Get over here Sam.”
Ellis looked at the clock then answered “On the way.”
Ellis walked to the elevator and took it down to the parking garage. He got into an unmarked car and sped out. He put his light on and hit the siren. His radio burst out with dispatch information from across Austin. He transmitted “Fifty Fifty to Austin?”
“Austin show me on detail per request of DPS Five Hundred.”
“Ten Four Fifty Fifty.”
Ellis arrived at the Governor’s mansion a few minutes later. He realized right away this was far from routine.
Ellis pulled up to the gate. The officer moved up with his weapon. Ellis spoke “Sam Ellis Texas Ranger.”
The officer spoke “ID please Ranger Ellis.”
Ellis handed over his ID and badge. The officer spoke into his radio a moment later the gate opened and Ellis drove through.
The British Airways flight pushed back on time from the gate. The man sat quietly in his first class seat. He sipped at some orange juice and listened as the flight crew gave safety announcements. He had not flown in a while. He had been in the US for some time. Connections with the business world and the US State Department were very helpful. But for the most he worked in Texas in the world of oil and other consulting. It wasin this consulting that he decided it was time to do something different. He really detested Texas lately. In some circles he had heard some talk of independence from the union. He scoffed at the idea. But he detested Texas in a sense for flaunting International treaty. A few years before Texas had executed a Mexican national. He had researched case and he decided it was time for himself to get onto world stage.
As it turned out it was way too easy. One of the problem’s with the Yanks was that they just never took security very seriously. Sure 9/11 was a start. But the problem really was one of complacency. It started at a bar in Austin. Sue Ellen Watts asked to dance with him and the rest fell into place. He wined and dined Sue Ellen. He charmed his way into the Governor’s family. Dean Watts saw something in this man money and support for his daughter. But mostly money for his re-election and plenty of contacts to go with it.
The 747 now sat in light evening traffic as the man opened his briefcase and looked at the picture of Sue Ellen. The world stage overtook the positive of how good he had it her. Indeed the reality was better than his wild plan. But like with any of these things actions took over. He looked at his watch almost four hours earlier he had taken the first step toward the world stage. A chime interrupted his thoughts a voice spoke “Flight Attendants prepare for departure.”
A few minutes later the 747-400 increased in whine and into a roar. As the jet climbed out the man looked at lights of Houston. A few minutes later he called a flight attendant to bring him a pillow and blanket. The flight attendant spoke softly “Mr. James try to stay awake dinner service will be very soon.”
The man nodded. The flight attendant thought the man odd but decided he was just a tired business man.
By now Ellis had been briefed and was handed the case of who done it. Jimmy Thomas had to stay focused on the Governor’s security. Sam Ellis and the Rangers would handle this homicide. It was a homicide. It was just as well that the Governor and his wife were in Lubbock. By now they were aware of the death Sue Ellen. But as with anything duty required Ellis and Thomas to fly to Lubbock to brief the Governor. Sue Ellen’s body had already been taken to State Medical Examiner’s. The Ranger’s Homicide Division had already descended on the Governor’s Mansion. Staff were told to remain in place and the whole complex was closed off.
Closed off or not the press knew something was up and although the DPS radio net was encrypted it did not matter. Reporters were able to get bits and pieces and by now news had started to leak out.
Ellis and Thomas boarded a DPS Lear jet for the short hop to Lubbock.
As the jet soared northwest Ellis worked the phones to try to ease the press exposure. Ellis never cared for the press and had been known to be very hostile toward them. Sure Chuck Norris played a good part in Texas Ranger but the job was a lot different. Sam Ellis was a true Texas lawman and took no nonsense. He now spoke politely but sternly to Dean Watts Chief of Staff “You tell them I will issue a statement as soon as I talk with the Governor and his wife.”
He listened and then spoke “Fine ask the Governor to call me then if he can’t wait.”
Ellis killed the call and looked at Jimmy “Marty wants to issue a statement.
Jimmy shook his head “I hate staff sometimes they don’t get it.”
Jimmy’s phone chirped. “Thomas.”
After listening “Yes sir I am aware of that but Sam wants to do this his way and he’s got the investigation.”
Over the plane engines Ellis could hear a loud voice. Thomas winced “Yes sir I will take care of this.”
Thomas turned to Ellis “DPS wants a statement for the press the was Blackburn.”
Ellis opened a laptop he had and logged into the DPS server. He typed a short statement for “No Comment at this time expect a statement at 11:00 PM.” He sent the message to the Mac Blackburn. Ellis knew Mac Blackburn the Deputy Commissioner of Texas Department of Public Safety. The man was tough and had a no nonsense approach. Blackburn was more a political type. He had been Harris County Sheriff and before that a Houston Police Commander. When Dean Watts hit office he had appointed Blackburn to the number two spot at DPS. The problem was Blackburn was now more a political then a lawman
Ellis lit a cigar “Let him suck those apples.”
Mac Blackburn sat in a conference room near the main DPS operations room. He glared at the print out from Ellis. Blackburn handed the printout to his aide “Have the press office release this statement.”
Aboard BA 22 Houston to London
The dinner service was good by now the man called James was in a calmer mood the wine had done its work. Suddenly a voice came over the pa “Good evening ladies and gentleman Its Captain Preston Cox we are on schedule for arrival in London at just after 8:00 AM weather in London rainy and sixty degrees we expect a smooth flight across the Atlantic. Should you require anything please let us know otherwise do try to get some rest.”
The intercom clicked off.
The man took this as his cue. By habit he looked out the window. There was nothing to see really but he glanced out. Slowly he shut the window shade and reclined his seat. Slowly the soft noise of the jet lulled him to sleep.
The DPS Lear jet landed almost an hour after leaving Austin. Ellis and Thomas were met by a Highway Patrol Service officer who drove them out toward to the Governor’s ranch outside Lubbock. The drive was quiet a soft rain started to fall. The car turned onto a dirt road and pulled up to a security checkpoint. The detail officer waved them through. The men walked into the main house a few minutes later. A staff member approached “Mr. Thomas the governor and his wife are upstairs.”
Thomas spoke “Thanks Joe and this Ranger Ellis.”
The Governor was sitting in an upstairs study. His wife nearby. “Hi Jimmy.”
“Governor this is Sam Ellis with the Rangers
“Yes hi Ranger Ellis.
Ellis wasted no time “Governor my condolences now we are investigating this as a homicide.”
Dean Watts wanted to slap the man but he already knew about Ellis a call from Mac Blackburn had prepared him. In another time and place he would get along with Ellis but right now he was still in shock.
"What can you tell us Ranger Ellis?"
"Well governor the cause of death is still unknown however we found some things already. A review of the logs and tapes show one James Wallace visiting with your daughter. He left thirty minutes before she was discovered.
"James is her boyfriend is he ok?"
Ellis frowned "Sir there is something else."
"Wallace has already left Austin he took a flight to Houston we are still checking this out."
Watts turned to Thomas "Take June out of here."
June Watts was crying as Thomas took her by the hand and led her out. The door shut. Watts rose and opened a mini bar. He fixed himself bourbon on ice. Sipping it he walked over to his desk and sank in the high back chair. "Well Ellis this is your case go with it I don't care how much resources you need work it and get this done I will tell Mac to give you what you need. You screw this up Ellis and well you will be doing crossing guard duty."
The conference room near the Operations Rom of Department of Public Safety was buzzing. Staff was bringing printouts and other updates from the Operations room. Mac Blackburn was trying to keep pace. So now he had received orders from Lubbock to give Sam Ellis support. Ellis had already requested a team of Rangers to spread out. Some of the Rangers were reporting in on results from a background on this Wallace guy.
An aide handed Blackburn a folder. He opened it and read the content.
Nice guy James Edward Wallace no criminal record a British Subject. He held work status United States. He was a consultant for security in oil business. He read more Per Governor Watts Wallace he was granted security clearances into the Governor's office and residence. Jimmy Thomas had run full check on this guy and had advised Watts to not give such a free pass to Wallace but Watts overruled Thomas.
Blackburn looked up "Yes?"
"Sir we just got word that the subject is on a flight to London."
"Get that to Ellis and get him back here."
The Governor entered the his meeting room at 11:00 PM. flanking him were Sam Ellis and Jimmy Thomas. Due to the late hour the press was light A local TV station had hurried over to the ranch. A tired looking Marty Canon Watts press secretary spoke "Ladies and Gentlemen I present Ranger Sam Ellis who will have a statement. There will be no questions."
Ellis spoke "Ladies and gentlemen this evening the daughter of Governor Watts was found dead at the Governor’s mansion in Austin. At this time we are treating this matter as a homicide. I can't give you anything further at this point."
The story was beamed back to the local station which beamed the feed to CNN and other national news networks.
By midnight the story was hot and the world stage was now set for James Wallace