I needed some advice from Spouse
|Recently I was asked to write a police interrogation. The assumption was that I'd been implicated in a burglary of which I knew nothing. Fantastic! I like to write mysteries so this would be right up my alley! My excitement was building. It would be a lot of fun, but I wanted my assignment to "ring true" to what actually happens in the real world. So my goal was to obtain priceless information from Spouse, who actually works at a police department.
Somehow, though, things didn't go exactly as planned.
It was early morning, and the coffee was made, the cinnamon rolls were baked, time was wasting! I couldn't wait any longer so I ran up the stairs two at a time and took a flying leap onto the bed. I landed with such force I just knew Spouse would be jolted instantly awake. To my surprise it actually took two flying leaps. "Spouse! Wake up! I need your help!" Again to my surprise I had to practically roll Spouse off the bed, into the bathroom and down the stairs where two steaming cups of colombian brew waited with sweetened cream and a hot cinnamon roll. Maybe I was impatient, but time was wasting and honestly, I needed Spouse's input for my assignment. I poured the coffee down Spouse's gullet and crammed the roll between Spouse's teeth and then massaged Spouse's cheeks until I heard a big swallow. Finally!
"Spouse! I need your help!"
"Police interrogation. I need to know how it's done."
"I have a writing assignment and I need to know how all of you do it at the department."
"We all do it differently."
"Well, can't you tell me what the formula is? I mean, there is some kind of standard, right?"
"No. We all do it differently."
"Seriously? Okay, then just tell me how you would do it."
"Interview? Or interrogate?"
"Okay. So is it Pre-Miranda or Post-Miranda?"
"Why does that matter?"
"Duh, does the perp understand his rights? You know. To remain silent, attorney present, all that."
"Seriously? Okay, Post-Miranda."
"Detective or officer?"
Blank look from Yours Truly.
Heavy sigh from Spouse.
"Usually the officer apprehending the perp starts the interrogation and then a detective comes in."
"Just tell me how you do it."
"So what's the crime?"
"First, second, or third degree?"
Blank look from Yours Truly.
Expectant, questioning look from Spouse.
Heavy sigh from Yours Truly and another attempt to gain priceless information.
"Let's say it's first degree."
"Okay. What's been stolen?"
"Just something that falls into the category of first degree."
"Well, I have to know what it is. Otherwise I don't know what questions to ask."
"I don't know what it is! Just whatever! Whatever piece of crap falls into first degree!"
"You don't have to be a jackass about it. You asked for MY help, remember?"
Defeated exasperation from Yours Truly.
Smug condescending look from Spouse.
Last ditch effort from Yours Truly.
"Are you going to Costco today?"
"Why? Do you need something?"
"Yes. I hear they sell coffins. You'll need to pick yours out."
"I thought you said it was burglary, not murder."
At that point I was no closer to writing an actual police interrogation. But I was pretty confident I'd get first-hand experience when I was picked up in connection with the suspicious homicide of one local police detective...Spouse!