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THE CELL story

Story ID:4207
Written by:Richard Laurent. Provencher (bio, contact, other stories)
Organization:Retired
Story type:Story
Location:Truro Nova Scotia Canada
Year:2008
Person:Rihard L. Provencher
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Two Police Officers show up, arrest, and bring him to a holding cell awaiting court for official charges. He tries to push away feelings of terror, since this is his first face-to-face experience with the law.

He’s uncomfortable in his own sweat. One of two accompanying officers walks him to the overnight holding area. After they leave, he is not allowed a blanket, pillow, towel, anything to read (nor his Bible), no toilet paper, and subjected to verbal abuse, by the officer on duty.

Now that they are alone, he takes his prisoner to the cells, stands outside one, reaches down and pulls the knot from the prisoner’s track pants about an inch from his stomach. The officer says, “You’re not supposed to have this belt cord.” From behind his back he pulls out a bowie knife, with a 6-7 inch blade, holds it to his prisoner’s face, blade down. The prisoner never felt such fear and thought he was about to die.

The officer said, “Now watch this,” and swung his knife down across the prisoner’s stomach cutting off the knot, his sweeping motion falling straight across the groin area ending past the prisoners’ knees. “Now get into that ******* cell!” the policeman shouted.

The prisoner was shaking so badly he could barely stand. Later in his six by nine cell, he could feel his Blood Pressure and mental health condition suffering from stress. The prisoner struggled in his mind with what had just occurred.

He lay on his tile bed, holding his head. The man had no true concept of time since his watch had been taken along with all personal effects. A camera outside his cell recorded every quivering movement.

The prisoner was claustrophobic, sensing the enclosure was collapsing inwards. He thought this couldn’t be happening. When the officer finally came by to inquire about his health, the prisoner asked for toilet paper to use in the cell washroom. Much later, the officer returned with a handful of torn sheets and thrust it as a snowball through the cell bars. “There!” the officer sneered.

It was comical how the prisoner had to piece them together like a jigsaw puzzle. He dared not mention he had no supper. Thankfully the officer finally brought a teen burger, small fries and small coke. At least it was something for his huge frame.

The prisoner asked, “Any soap to wash my hands?” The officer laughed when told the prisoner’s hands were full of mash, from killing ants crawling over his cell bed. The prisoner whined, “How am I going to sleep with them around?”

“I wouldn’t know,” the policeman answered. The prisoner didn’t see him again until two new officers came to take him to court the next morning.

The prisoner was asked to strip and turn in a circle twice, probably to verify he hadn’t been beaten. Thankfully. After dressing, one huge officer grabbed the prisoner’s shoulders from behind, hurting his back as both arms were pulled together. Then handcuffs were snapped on for the trip to court.

The cuffs had been placed across the prisoner’s wrist bones and squeezed tightly. The policeman even grunted from the exertion. “That hurts,” the prisoner said. A pulled shoulder muscle would cause the prisoner pain for about three months.

In the back seat of the Police car, it was impossible to sit up and the prisoner was sure he was deliberately left lying on his side for around fifteen minutes. He tried to will away the pain. When the gorilla-sized officer returned, he noticed the prisoner in obvious discomfort and adjusted the handcuffs less tightly. Bones on both wrists had grooves in them from the tightly placed cuffs, and the prisoner was subjected to verbal abuse because the policeman thought he was a bother.

After the prisoner was released on bail that afternoon he wrote down every detail and presented his statement to his lawyer who said to forget it. Later, the man spoke to three lawyer friends, including an old friend, a sitting court judge about the incident. They all said, “Forget it. Move on. Besides, you have no witnesses.”

Now the man has nightmares, cold sweats, BP up and down frequently whenever he remembers the incident. Sometimes he is able to push away the memory. But just the thought of that quick, downward thrust of bowie knife still gives him chilled feelings.

What if he had curved inward, just an inch or two? Thinking about the incident causes the right side of his head to ache. Now his BP is starting to rise, and his face is flushed. Did this all really happen in Canada?

* * *

© Richard L. Provencher 2007


Co-authors Richard and Esther Provencher invite you to view their newest novel SOMEONE’S SON written during Richard’s recovery from a stroke, which gob-smacked him in 1999. It is a Young Adult novel dealing with a family crisis. http://www.synergebooks.com/ebook_someonesson.html