I've always consider curiosity as one of the hallmarks of a good police officer. And strangely enough, I was very curious to learn more about Stephen after finding out he'd dug up a body and kept the skull in his bedroom. I spent a little time on the computer, and then made a couple of phone calls out to Newfoundland (where he hailed from) and quickly learned some more tidbits about our Billy Idol look-a-like.
Most notably was that during an arrest, he had attempted to take the arresting member's gun away from him, in an attempt to kill him. And that he had attempted suicide in cells, by asking for some writing paper and a pen, and then sticking the ballpoint pen into his chest cavity between a couple of his ribs. That takes dedication. It also pointed to the fact that our man was more than a little unhinged, and dangerous. Dangerous to the police, and himself.
Oddly enough, no one was able to answer the questions I had about the grave robbing. Quite simply, no one knew why he did it. Up to that point he'd been considered a bit of an odd duck, but digging up a grave was not what people had expected from him. (Let's face it, its not what we'd expect from almost anyone). Speculation abounded, mostly about satanism, something that he vehemently denied. While he freely admitted to the crime, he wouldn't talk about why he did it. Perhaps even he didn't know.
He did say that he was determined to make a new start, and while I was hoping he would be able to I was sure that our paths would cross, professionally. Soon, although he had gotten a job as a night clerk at one of the hotels, his name began to crop up. Usually it involved domestic disputes with his girlfriend. And although they were on the minor end of the scale, they began happening more frequently. Soon she had had enough and moved out. As is often the case, things began to unravel.
He was arrested a couple of times, for disturbances and what not, and then he lost his job due to his erratic behaviour. A short time after that we got two quick calls in succession. The first was from Stephen, advising he'd been assaulted by the new night clerk, the second from the night clerk. The new night clerk said that Stephen had come in and wanted to go into the bar by a rear entrance that was through the front desk area. When he was refused, Stephen had produced a large knife and struck the front counter with it, taking out a piece of the counter. As Stephen struck the counter a second time, the new clerk took the opportunity to deck Stephen with one punch to the face. It was a painful reminder that you shouldn't pick a fight with someone whose nickname is "Chainsaw".
The clerk then ducked through a door and called us, and we quickly arrived at the hotel. Stephen was not around but he had left behind the large knife, and the new clerk turned it over to us. As we got to the truck Stephen appeared, and I promptly arrested him.
At the back of the truck I let Stephen know about his rights and then told him I was going to search him. He quickly volunteered that he had another knife in his boot. I was going to reach down for it but thought better of it. Often, when people who are about to be searched volunteer something you can easily be led to believe that that is all they have. Many times it is, but many times it is a distraction, the fellow who produces an ounce of marihuana as soon as you execute a search warrant sometimes is really hoping that you'll stop there and not find the pound in the basement.
Stephen was put up against the truck and as soon as I started my pat down I felt something inside his jacket. Inside a special pocket on his left side of the jacket were two daggers. There was indeed a knife in his boot, but he had a total of five knives that knife, another knife was found in another pocket.
He was lodged in cells, in what was pretty much our last meeting and I made sure to tell the guard to keep a close "suicide" watch on him. As I went out the door I added "Oh, and no pens either".