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Within the hour Detective Benson was at the school to pick up the little girl. She walked out of the school with her head held high. Yet she knew when she stepped out of the school the damage she had done; suddenly her eyes welled with tears. She thought of the good times she had with her father and thought maybe she had made the wrong decision. She took a deep breath, closed her eyes and proceeded to the cops car.
“You are very brave miss” whispered Detective Benson “very very brave”
She leaned her head on the window and took one last glance of reality. The detective put the car into drive and wheeled away from the school; as it faded into the distance she felt a weight lifted off her shoulders.
“When we arrive at the station you will be taken to a room to be questioned. Detective Sara will be talking to you about the instances”
“I understand” she said as she trembled in the passenger seat.
The drive seemed like years to the little girl but in reality it was all of fifteen minutes. She walked into the station clutching her backpack like it was a life preserver. The detective opened the door and in the distance she saw her father handcuffed and angry. He screamed at her as she walked past for ruining her life. It wasn’t the first time he had said this so she walked faster and she passed him. His rage was nothing new to her.
“Hello miss I am Detective Sara I will be questioning you. Would you like a drink? A snack?”
“Water please with ice” She needed something cold to kill the intense warm feeling filling her body.
“Of course I will be right back”
She pulled her phone out and noticed four missed calls from her older sister; she quickly slipped the phone back in her pocket. The door opened.
“Here you go’ The detective sat the water on the table.
The little girl toyed with the cup and tried to calm her nerves. She picked up the cup and took a large gulp of the ice cold water; she was so warm it felt like it burnt going down.
“I would like to ask you some questions if that’s ok.”
“Sure” The little girl felt a lump fill her throat.
“Please start with the first time you remember your dad’s violent acts”
“The first one I remember is when I was three years old. I was crying because my favorite toy had broken. My father threw his beer bottle across the room, shattering it against the wall as he screamed. My mother ran in the room, grabbed me and my sister under each arm and ran with us as my father followed not far behind. He screamed he wanted her dead and kicked at the door into the late hours of the night. He finally gave up and went to sleep. The next morning he had no memory of what happened the night before.”
“Was this the only time he exploded on you?”
“No this was only the beginning of it”
After hours of questions and telling stories of her drunk father the little girl asked for a break. She was having flashbacks of the attacks on her mother, on her sister and her aunt. It was all too much. The little girl began to cry as the memories filled her brain. The detective understood and allowed her to call her sister.
“I am so sorry Katrina I had to make this call it was the only thing that would make him not kill our mother”
“I am on my way to the station to pick you up. You did nothing wrong dad did. I love you”
“I love you too.”
Her big sister meant the world to her; she had always taken the attacks for her; there was no way for her to ever properly repay her sister for what she had done all those years. She sat in the waiting room for her sister to arrive at the station.
“Come here” Katrina and the little girl hugged each other.
Katrina was the little girl’s heart and soul beside her mother. The two of them did everything for her.
“I am going to go sign you out. They said on the phone you could come stay at my house and we could go get some of your things from the house tonight”
“Thank you for everything” the girl whispered to her sister “Truly I don’t know what I would do without you”
*THREE DAYS LATER*
“Mr. Getherson your daughters have told us of your events of rage and violence is there anything you would like to say in your defence”.
“No your honor I accept all chargers I have no chance against a sixteen year old’s word she would win this no matter what I say” states the little girl’s father with wide eyes and clenched teeth.
“Mr. Getherson you need to control your anger in MY courtroom” Judge Orwin beckoned out.
Utter shock ran upon the little girl’s face as her father didn’t even fight the charges. He accepted all sixteen years of abuse and pain without a question. The girl didn’t know how to answer. Even if he accepted it because he knew he wouldn’t win he still didn’t fight it.
“Mr. Getherson, is there anything you would like to say to your daughters”?
“My little girl, Carol, I am so sorry. I hope someday you can forgive me. However I want you to know you ruined me Carol, you ruined my job persona and my life; we could have talked it out sweetie but of course you wouldn’t do that. Katrina, my oldest daughter, take good care of your sister.”
“This courtroom is going to recess and will proceed later”
The gavel slamming on the desk could be heard as the little girl scurried past her father. In the distance she saw her mother, Jessica. The little girl ran to her mother; Katrina wasn’t far behind. The little girl’s mother had been released from the hospital, she looked pretty good. She had a few bruises, a broken arm and stitches but nothing that time couldn’t heal.
“Carol, my baby girl, you are so brave I am so proud of you sweetie. You did it; thank you. Katrina thank you, thank you, thank you. Oh come here girls” their mother Jessica held them tight as she could with the one arm.
The loud dinging could be heard meaning it was time for sentencing. The little girl, her sister and mother walked in with their heads high.
“Mr. Getherson based on what your daughter has told us and you pleading guilty these are the charges. Child endangerment, guilty. Child abuse, guilty. Domestic abuse, guilty. Alcohol abuse, guilty.”
Shock ran across Scott Gethersons face as he realized how much trouble he was in.
“Based on the charges you have been found guilty of you will be facing time. You will be serving five years for child endangerment, twenty years for child abuse, ten years for domestic abuse and two years for alcohol abuse. This totals out to thirty seven years in federal prison. After your prison time you will be required to go to AA every week and will be drug and alcohol tested at all times, security you are good to take him away.”
At one time, there was a defiant little girl, standing in front of the bull, like this tall and brave as her father was brought to prison. Carol smiled and hugged her mother and sister, she had saved them from the bull.