Ernie went first and within minutes the bloody shirt

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Unformatted text preview: ot;Where'd you buy this shirt, Mr. Padgitt?" Danny froze, uncertain as to whether he should deny it was his, or admit ownership, or try and recall where he bought the damned thing. "You didn't steal it, did you?" Ernie roared at him. "I did not." "Then answer my question, and please try to remember you're under oath. Where did you buy this shirt?" As Ernie talked he held the shirt in front of him with his fingertips, as if the blood was still wet and Generated by ABC Amber LIT Converter, might spot his suit. "Over in Tupelo, I think. I really don't remember. It's just a shirt." "How long have you owned it?" Another pause. How many men can remember when they bought a particular shirt? "A year or so, maybe. I don't keep notes on clothes." "Neither do I," Ernie said. "When you were in bed with Lydia that night, had you removed this shirt?" A very cautious, "Yes." "Where was it while the two of you were, uh, having relations?" "On the floor, I guess." Now that it was firmly established that the shirt was his, Ernie was free to slaughter the witness. He pulled out the report from the state crime lab, read it to Danny, and asked him how his own blood came to be stained on the shirt. This led to a discussion about his driving abilities, his tendency to speed, the type of vehicle, and the fact that he was legally drunk when he flipped his truck. With Ernie pounding away, I doubt if a case of driving under the influence had ever sounded so deadly. Not surprisingly, Danny had a thin skin and began to bristle at Ernie's pointed and sardonic questioning. On to Rhoda's bloodstains. If he was in bed with Lydia, with the shirt on the floor, how in the world did Rhoda's blood find its way from her bedroom to Lydia's, a half mile away? It was a conspiracy, Danny said, advancing a new theory and digging a hole he would never get out of. Too much time alone in a jail cell can be dangerous for a guilty crimin...
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