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Literature Discussion -



Screenplay By Phillip Ghee (USA)

Chapter Thirteen



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CHAPTER 13                                                        

Being a Lieutenant in the homicide division, DeBaptise has seen has share of gang murders, kids killing kids, domestic disputes that end badly and comrades who were gunned down. DeBaptise now take advantage of his rank and position and now opts to work at a mellower pace, mostly on cold cases. He still sits in on most briefing that younger detectives may be working on but for the most part he enjoys what he considers to be his golden ages. DeBaptise has driven sixty miles north of Los Angeles to Oxnard to interview an aging witness to a murder that took place in the seventies. When he returns back to the station he is surprised to find Garcetti decked out in an, although unfashionable, proper black suit with a brown tie to clash. We as audience don’t know what were the results of DeBaptise’s experimentation's with a side of pig but, we can assume by the way he eyes the Gutierrez’s folder on Garrett’s desk that there is now more than just a nagging interest.


“So sergeant, you trying to go behind my back and make Lieutenant?”



“No, how do they say it in the military, I am not an officer, I work for a living.”


“So why the tux ?”


“Funeral today, The Gutierrez girl.“

(He flicks over to DeBaptise a memorial announcement. It has another sweet picture of the girl on the front cover. DeBaptise shakes his head in disappointment.

(Politely fingering the outer cover of the folder)

I never had known you to take that much interest in a homicide to go to the funeral unless it was one of our own.


Since I don’t have any real leads, I figured that maybe some remorseful soul would try to show up. And I can spot a gang member dressed in a space suit.


Still going with the gang thing?



Yeah! And now I have a motive. And there must have been at least 12 gangsters in the house and I am sure representing two different gangs.

Believing the conversation has progressed to a point where Garcetti is ready to unload all about his theories, DeBaptise gives Garcetti a ‘do you mind look’ and
Slowly opens the folder. As Garcetti goes on and on about how he picked out the
Gang members, DeBaptise as well as us the audience fades him out. Our focus switches entirely on DeBaptise as he thumbs through the pages and photographs.
There is not much in the way of text, the usually stats, and age. school, employment.
Residence, Names of relatives and acquaintances. Having seen all he cares to see of the post mortem photos he bypasses them. What catches his eye is a picture of Esmele unlike the others. This is a plain shot, not a dress up or a poised shot. Her
hair which is spectacular in all the other photos is tied up, with a few long braids
protruding from a simply bandanna. She looks like someone about to do Saturday
day chores in this photo. The eerie feeling of familiarity hits DeBaptise like a ton of bricks. Garcetti’s monologue fades back in.



So the house was packed with everything from beaners who look like they just slipped under the fence last night to Ivy League college boys and local politicians
trying to shore up the empathy vote. That smock councilman who got my ass on
firing line was there to. Give me the big eye on the way out.
There must have been a couple of hundred people there.


A young innocent girl dies like that and the community shows up.


Losing your objectivity Detective, don’t judge a book by a pretty cover.
Seems like our Ms.Esmele had hot pants. That’s why I have a real motive
now. I think one of the gang bangers got a little too! sweet on her than
found out her history. She’s got a Hommie on both bus routes if you know
what I mean. Seems like she got a sugar daddy, three times her age who
keeps her in new shoes. I don’t know about the frat boys, maybe she does
the fireman’s pole shimmy at the Kappa, Kappa,TapHer house on party
night. You should see the girl’s wardrobe; she ain’t getting those clothes on
Maid’s salary.


(still fumbling through the folder but, Garcetti has his full undivided attention

I didn’t see anything in here about her being a maid. Says here that she worked
At Burger and Bun but that was last year and, I thought she was still in High



Well she not really a maid. It seems like some of these maids, the ones that work
for the real big shots are so well off now that they pick up girls to work with them for the day, just like the guys pick out day helpers and laborers at the Home
Emporium. She kinda had a steady weekend gig with this one maid.


Wait a minute, that don’t add up. It she had so many suitors, supporters and ways
of obtaining quick cash, why would she be getting down and dirty, doing work
the maid boss probably didn’t even want to do?


Good question, Boss. The most I can figure, right now, is that she likes hanging
that college, maybe that’s how she put her name out there amongst the college
boys because they sure as Hell ain’t going down to her neighborhood. Hey!
Maybe you seen her, I think it’s the one where you take those delinquents. You
Haven’t been to any Frat Parties now have you lieutenant?


So what do they clean up there, offices, classrooms?


You’re not listening Detective, I said the Maids who worked for the big shots.
She worked for the Preacher, Teacher, evangelist or whatever who did the
officiating at the funeral. He is a big wheel there, got himself a mansion right
there on campus. They cleaned house for him on the week-ends.

(trying to sound non chalant)

OH! Garcetti, teacher, preacher, Evangelist, what kind of Catholic are you?


I youse to be a good one until they caught me jimmying open the
poor box at age 10.


I don't recall seeing that on your personal history when you
transferred here from New York


Sorry Lieutenant, I guess with all the pot smoking in my teens,
I must’ve forgot. Maybe that's why I was going in the box in
first place.      

(Both men have a hearty laugh)

(still trying to sound non-chalant)

Sounds like he's got a heart for the disadvantage, Maybe he does
Chapel at the college, I should take the little monsters there for
at least one service on the here and after. What is THE PRIES T's,
THE PRIES T's, Garcetti, name again?


Oh Yeah! that reminds me, I have to update the folder, let's see
Easton, Professor Father, is that right? Alagore Easton.


DeBaptise leaves. He has suspicions, very strong suspicions.


Professor Alagore drives the boys back from the funeral. The mood is quiet. When they arrive at the boy’s dorm a stoic Braxton starts to crack He tries to speak through the breaks in his voice, Jared wishes to comfort his friend but Alagore gently beckons Jared to go inside. The two men remain in the car. Jared, from his dorm room window watches from sometime before seeing the car drive off with Braxton still in it.

Continued next week...


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