Chapter 66

July 22nd, 2011

Double Incidents

I closed-down on Saturday at 14:45hrs (2:45pm), since retail activity was essentially over for the day, and decided to go to my condo in East York, feed and water Murphy with plenty of extra food for the 1½ days I'd be gone. I hit I-83 north, exited at my usual place above York County, and headed down the long road , into the mountains, to The Cabin, about 12 miles south of the quaint old village of Adam's Junction. After pulling into the 1,000ft crushed bluestone gravel driveway, and parking by the front porch in the circle turnaround near the large deck & picnic table on the side deck, I disarmed the building and went in to see Jenny with my weapons first, then back out for the gear. She was happy to see me, but didn't knock me down this time. I fed & watered her, called Randy and told him to stand-down until Sunday evening, after I'd left for York. Although it was 88°F in York, it was 72°F here in the mountains and no need for AC just yet, as the large overhead trees' shade was very cooling. I opened-up The Cabin's windows to air-out the place. It was 15:40hrs (3:40pm).

After unpacking my clothes and gear into the Master Bedroom and stowing some extra provisions into the well-stocked Kitchen Pantry. I grabbed a shower, some fresh clothes, and plopped myself down in one of the LR's comfy chairs to rest. If I didn't invent "The Virtual Cabin" to escape to, I'd have gone completely insane over a year ago, with all the burdens the lousy economy and traitors in DC have foisted upon me and my business. Although "virtual", when I'm there, it's "real" to me and I "come back" refreshed and ready for another week in the "real world". I had some food and personal item shopping to do at Bev & Tony's General Store, and some freshly-baked crusty Italian bread and delicious "Hot Cross Sticky Buns" to get at Old Mrs Patagonia's Bakery, before they closed at 5pm today, for Sunday's Church Services, so I closed all the windows, armed the building and left for town. On the way in, I filled-up the Jeep at Roy's Shell Gas & Service Station, Randy's father's place, where lots of truckers and scores of tourists now stopped-in right off I-83, in both directions.

When I got to town and finished my shopping errands, getting exactly what I needed, I decided to drive around the quaint, turn-of-the-19th century village of Adam's Junction, and then head downtown to the Town Square, and watch people for a while. I'd brought the perishable groceries with me from York and put them in the 'fridge before I left The Cabin, so what I had in the back of the Jeep wasn't going to matter. It was a good 10-15°F warmer here, since the streets and building reflect and retain heat, than back in The Cabin's wooded property. I love the angled parking; reminds me of going to college at Drake University in Des Moines, IA, back in the late-60s, where everything was that way, and villages and towns had "squares". Those days are long gone in all but a very few communities, now.

While sitting in the Square, one of the Town Square's "residents" visited and I fed him some peanuts from a 20oz bag I'd bought at Bev & Tony's General Store. Soon, I was inundated with tame, eat-out-of-your-hand squirrels and gave the rest of the bag to them. I walked up and down the north end of Main Street, and around the south end of AJ's Main Street, through an alleyway off Main Street, around the east side of the Town Square, past some nice shops, and still more nice places, up to the west side of Main Street, until I was tired of walking, and then rested in the Town Square Memorial Park for a while. I saw Capt Clay pass by in his new Captain's Police Cruiser with state-of-the-art everything inside, and waved. He did an illegal (not for him) U-turn, parked and came back to my bench to visit.

We talked for 10-15 minutes as he listened to the chatter on his belt radio, and I told him that early on Saturday morning, around 07:00hrs (7am), September 3rd on Labor Day Weekend was good for "shooting lessons". I could take 3 Deputies at a time, for 1¼ hours as the 1st shift, and handle the next 3 Deputies for the same time period as soon as the first 3 were re-deployed. I'd join all of them on patrol after the second 3 were re-deployed. He agreed and would work on a "revised schedule, since I'd wanted to do it early and everyone would be working that final Holiday Weekend; me included. Clay still wanted me to have a new, state-of-the-art, unmarked Police Cruiser instead of using my personal Jeep when I was on-duty, and that was sounding pretty good, right about now. At 4:05pm, he got a radio call for a "211 (robbery) in-progress" at the nearby Drover's Bank, just two blocks away, and ran to his new, state-of-the-art Police Cruiser. It was new and state-of-the-art, inside, too. He yelled at me to follow him in 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo. I had my Deputy Sheriff Badge and ID, plus my Bushmaster Carbon 15 Type 21S Pistol and Beowulf .50cal with an EoTech Red Dot Scope, and 10 20-round mags loaded with 8 335gr .50cal rounds each (maximum capacity for that large a round), in the back seat in their Eagle Carrying Bags, plus my Concealed Carry (PA CCW 1990) Kimber 1911 "Eclipse Target II" .45cal ACP, as always. I followed him going "Code 2" (lights, no siren), to the bank.

We parked at the north end of the street, blocking any escape, while two other Deputies had done the same on the south end of the street, also blocking it. They were busy hustling civilians off the street and into shops who were told to "lock-up & stay down, away from windows and doors in the rear of the stores". Clay had his 12ga spread across the hood of his Cruiser, while I grabbed the Beowulf .50cal, 5 extra mags and worked my way along the buildings, toward the bank. Just then, two of the robbers, redneck criminals ostensibly from both the Grove and Holtzapple Clans, came backing-out of the Bank, with sawed-off Mossberg 12ga shotguns and a small bag of money each. As soon as they saw the Police Cruisers, they opened fire in both directions, but the shotguns weren't effective at that range and all that got hit were parked cars and store windows. I drew down the Beowulf and shot both of them in their chests, blowing their opposite sides out all over the place, dropping them instantly, never having enough time to go for the Sniper's Triangle, although one was facing me, the other wheeled-around and fired, as I ducked into a building alcove, dropped to my knees and fired from 3ft lower than he'd shot. There was a 3rd perp inside, who started yelling, "I've got hostages"! Both scumbags I'd shot quickly bled-out on the sidewalk and street. The cavitation in the human body (or anything it hits) by the Beowulf .50cal caused massive damage to them both (inside of 200yds) and no Trauma Center Team anywhere, could ever put those "humpty-dumptys back together again".

Hostages "changed everything", now. It was 16:25hrs (4:25pm). I had no Police Radio, so I didn't know what was going on with the other 2 Deputies and Clay, so I crept around the side of the Bank and carefully peeped into a 1" thick, tempered & hardened (but not bulletproof) glass window. All customers and employees were flat on the floor, with the perp standing, his 12ga to one of the women's head. I backed-up 6-8", took aim and fired through the 1" glass, hitting the bad guy square in the upper torso, throwing him back 5-10ft, without his even firing the sawed-off 12ga. I yelled to Clay that he was down and the Deputies rushed the Bank, as did Clay, guns drawn. Blood and tissue matter was all over the place, and on many of the customers, as the Beowulf .50cal blew a hole the size of 2 basketballs out of the perp's backside. I ran around the front, checked the 2 dead guys, and then went into the Bank. Wheew, what a mess! They'd be closed for days, doing "clean-up" from that one shot. Clay just smiled, and then got to business as the 3 Memorial Hospital Ambulances and EMTs arrived, with 2 more Deputies' Cruisers. The need for "back-up" was past; "clean-up on aisle 5" was in order.

I unloaded the .50cal, stood-down until Clay came out and took the AJPD's official statement, while the AJPD Forensic Photographer (new hire) was working on the crime scene. By now, 3 PA State Police Cruisers and 2 FBI Agents had shown-up and taken charge, since it was now a Federal Crime and they sealed-it-off with yellow "Crime Scene Tape". I was grilled pretty thoroughly by both the State and Feds, with Capt Clay adding to my statement, and giving his own. We were "dismissed" and left the Bank area. The Deputies had covered the 2 bodies in the streets with tarps, but the EMTs "tagged & bagged" them and took the 3 to the new morgue. All 3 were positively-ID'd as Holtzapples: Tommy, Bert and Ira. I was thinking that after all the Holtzapples and Groves I'd shot and killed, they must be "running out of relatives", but the woods could be full of them. Who knows for sure? The AJ Fire Dep't was pressure-hosing-off the sidewalk and street, after forensic and DNA samples had been taken and catalogued. The Bank's inside clean-up would be a "more involved process". I was getting hungry, so I invited Clay and the Deputies back to The Cabin for a Bacon Cheeseburger w/ Home Fries, but they'd lost their collective appetites after they'd seen firsthand the widespread carnage caused by the Beowulf .50cal. Didn't bother me; I'd seen far worse in my VietNam Tours w/ 3rd Special Forces 101st Airborne (Green Berets) and later. So I left for The Cabin, another shower and fresh clothes and some dinner.

After a shower, dinner and feeding & watering Jenny, I re-opened The Cabin's windows and front door to continue airing it out, and then sat in a comfy LR chair to do some more reading of "Unintended Consequences" by John Ross. By now, it was 19:30hrs (7:30pm) and it was getting on to dusk here in the mountains, an hour or so ahead of York and Harrisburg time clocks. I did a load of laundry, closed The Cabin's windows and door, lit the LR's Hearth and relaxed. Jenny had curled-up on her Kodiak Bearskin Rug, next to me and the fire. I'd had enough for the day; all I wanted to do was get away for the weekend, and not get involved in any Police activity, but was once again drawn-into it by Capt Clay.

I laid-out everything, except the food in the 'fridge, which I'd need for breakfast, as I did at my condo every evening for the next morning's breakfast, so there'd be no fumbling around looking for items at 04:15hrs (4:15am): plates, 2 8" well-seasoned cast iron skillets, coffee mug, bowl(s), Truvia® Sweetener for the coffee and Quaker Oats® Instant Oatmeal (not grits), Quaker Oats® Instant Gritss (various flavors), silverware and the Chemex® Drip Coffeemaker System. I hate fumbling around looking for stuff in the early, dark mornings, especially when I'm taking care of Murphy and making myself something to eat, get ready and hit the road to work by 05:45hrs (5:45am). I even do it on Friday and Saturday evenings for the weekend mornings; everything's set-up and ready-to-go. Just habit. "Prep work" is the key; I learned that at the ultra-prestigious CIA (Culinary Institute of America) in Hyde Park, NY, as a graduate chef back in the mid-80s, in between advertising jobs in my career on NYC's Madison Ave.

I was asleep by 21:00hrs (9pm), and had another very restless, weird dream-filled night. It wasn't the "Bladerunner"-type dreams; I can't remember just exactly *what dreams they were*, but I was awake 3x to shake-them-off, have a smoke and try to get back to a peaceful state of sleep. It wasn't at all peaceful, but more of a REM sleep, as I'd hoped it wouldn't be. Nevertheless, I was up at 6am and the day and week were ahead, so I fed & watered Jenny, did dishes, a load of laundry, some cleaning and got ready for a drive into town to watch the people headed to their Methodist Church, or Lutheran Church or Catholic Church. No Temples or mosques in this place. Their parking lots would overflow, as usual and from 9am to 12noon, Adam's Junction's streets and sidewalks would be empty. The few stores which would be open on Sunday, would do so after 1pm and would only be for "necessities". They still operated under ancient "Blue Laws" here, which don't exist anymore in 95% of the 50 states.

At 08:30hrs (8:30am), I took Jenny for a walk down the 1,000ft crushed gravel driveway to the road to town, and back to The Cabin, since I didn't want to have to deal with possible ticks in the 3-4-acre meadow. She loved being outside and the fresh morning air, and stopped 2x along the way and "did her business" in the recently-cut grass. Randy, Roy's (Roy's Shell Gas & Service Station) 18-year old son, takes care of The Cabin, Jenny, mowing, firewood and the snowplowing for me. I mail a weekly check for his care of those, plus other chores, same as I do in the Winter for plowing and shoveling-out The Cabin after one of the deep mountain snows. Well worth the $35/ week, plus a "bonus" for extra work such as firewood cutting and stacking, IMO.

By 09:00hrs (9am), I decided to take Jenny along into town; she'd enjoy getting out and walking around with me, on her leash, around some of AJ's Main Streets on a Summer's Sunday morning, when it wasn't so crowded with residents and tourists. Everyone we met said hello, stopped to pet her and get their hands licked, especially the kids. She was an instant hit, and everyone knew her history (the mixed-breed, half-frozen puppy I'd found along the road, rescued, and bought from her uncaring owners for $150, last Winter), so she and I were readily-accepted as part of the town community. We passed by a lot of shops and stores on the north end of Main Street, as well as the south end of Main Street, the west side of AJ's Town Square, a side street off The Town Square, a beautiful cobblestone alleyway off Main Street, and basically covered the 1¼ square miles of the entire downtown. Jenny was panting by now, and I stopped by the Town Square Memorial Park's fountain to get her a drink of water, at 11:00hrs (11am). The town was still fairly empty with the 2nd session of Church Worship Services just beginning. By 12:00hrs (12noon), it would get busier in town, but right now, it was peaceful and quiet.

New Deputy Arthur was driving by in his new, state-of-the-art Police Cruiser, pulled-over and stopped at the Town Square Park, to chat. He "10-20'd" the Police Dispatcher for 10 minutes, with his coffee, and we talked about the upcoming "shooting lessons" and my 3 Tours in VietNam (Laos, Cambodia & Thailand) with 3rd Special Forces 101st Airborne (Green Berets), during the late-60s/early 70s. He was concerned that he wouldn't pass my "tests" and would lose his job. I assured him that wasn't the case; that it was training and we'd all train until they (and Capt Clay) became as proficient as I was. He now felt better about it. Then at 11:10hrs (11:10am), he got a call about a "domestic disturbance" on the northern edge of town at an isolated, but very large and beautiful farmhouse complex. It had a long gravel driveway road, numerous outbuildings with 400 acres of very desirable farmland, and was one I'd looked at, which was for sale, before I bought The Cabin on its 43 acres. I'd have "gotten lost" inside a place with 10 bedrooms, 5 baths, 3 kitchens, servants' quarters, 2 living rooms, a library, drawing rooms etc, and just didn't have the $1.1 million to spend for it. (Of course, now I do with the "unreported recovery of $7,100,000.00 in gold nuggets" from the huge gold ore vein below the 3-4-acre meadow's stream, last year.) But I had plans for all that "unreported gold" (a "gift to the Town of Adam's Junction" plus keeping some for myself), since the recovered and reported $4,455,731.47 in gold ore was taxed at 70% and netted me another $1,335,720.00, which I carefully invested in oil-shale recovery companies in Canada, and am making 85% profit. Arthur asked if I'd go with him to the site and he ran for his Cruiser. I said yes, and quickly took Jenny on her leash and headed for the Jeep to follow him.

He went "Code 2" again and I was right on his back bumper speeding through town to the north side. I had the AR-10 .308cal (7.62 x 51mm NATO) with Leupold Gold Dot Mark 4 CQ/T Scope, and plenty of .308cal (7.62 x 51mm NATO) ammo in the 20-round magazines. I'd taken it along to show Capt Clay, who was on-duty today, as the weapon-of-choice for long and medium-range sniper work. I was still working on a "short list" of multiple weapons – Kimber 1911 .45cal sidearms, AR-15 & AR-10 rifles, and Remington Semi-automatic 12ga shotguns – for his 7-man force to upgrade to, from their shitty 9mm Berettas and older model Remy 870 12ga Pump Synthetic Express Super Magnum pump shotguns, one of which I have in my massive Cannon Dbl-Door Gunsafe's (which they don't make anymore) collection. We arrived at the farmhouse estate in about 8 minutes, with Capt Clay and 2 other Deputies already there, at the driveway entrance, some 350yds from the main road. Veteran Deputies Tim and Alex welcomed me and we shook hands. I took the AR-10 out of its carrying bag, loaded a 20-round mag, and grabbed 5 others to put in my "Jack Bauer" Satchel Bag, along with all the "survival gear" already inside it. Even though it was a bright, sunny day, the Leupold Gold Dot Mark 4 CQ/T Scope lit-up perfectly and short/medium/long-range shots would be easy.

Capt Clay had the people in the house on his cellphone talking to them about the "domestic disturbance" call, and trying to find out what it was all about. I waiting with him at his Cruiser, behind the engine, as protection from any possible 30-.06cal deer rifle shots, coming from the house. It seems that their one daughter's lowlife "boyfriend" was very drunk, had a deer rifle, had shot at the family dogs wounding one slightly, and threatened to kill the entire family when he was told to "go home and not come back". He was now holed-up in one of the outbuildings, and the family didn't know which one. Just then, a shot rang out and hit Deputy Tim's Cruiser's right rear passenger window, shattering it. Yep, the boy had our range sighted-in, and this was going to be messy.

I went back to the Jeep, and backed it against some dense, tall woods, in the shade, to hide it and protect Jenny, who was inside with the windows partially rolled-down, so she'd be out-of-sight and harm's way. I snuck up the left side of the property under cover of a long hedgerow of large lilacs and forsythia, getting within 50-60yds of the main farmhouse. The outbuildings were scattered behind the massive white barn and silo, leading to the pasture and some of the adjacent 400 acres. Much of the acreage was across the road and extended for miles. With only 9mm and .38cal Colt sidearms and 12ga pump shotguns, Clay and the Deputies were useless to me as covering fire; I was on my own, once again.

I scanned the buildings with my scope and saw the man in the doorway of the livery stable building, drinking from a bottle of Jack Daniels® Whiskey. He was wobbling slightly as he drank and leaned against the door frame, with the door and several windows facing the road, wide open. I could also see some of the family in the main farmhouse peering out of the windows, on the second floor. With a Police radio given to me by Tim, I told Clay to tell them all to get away from the windows; he called back on his cellphone, and their faces quickly-disappeared from my scope's view. I re-sighted the man in the livery barn, who'd by now put the rifle against the wall, thrown-up from all his drinking and was teetering-around the doorway. I didn't want to kill him, although I easily could have with a single shot to the Sniper's Triangle. If I'd wait him out, he'd probably either collapse or fall asleep from all the booze. About 45 seconds later, he was sitting down against the outside wall, head down, and I moved quickly toward him. Without waning, I hit him in the chest with the AR-10's stock butt, knocking the wind out of him, grabbed his rifle and the .357 Magnum revolver from his holster as he was doubled-up on the ground, and radioed Clay and the others to come get him. They roared-up the driveway in their Police Cruisers and were on him like "white-on-rice", had him cuffed, in the back of a Cruiser and secured his 2 weapons. Not a shot fired by us; he got-off only one, missing everyone but damaging Tim's new Cruiser's window. Tim was pissed-off; he'd now have to share a car or ride with someone else until it was repaired.

I walked back down the long driveway to the Jeep and checked on Jenny; it was 78°F she was thirsty, so I drove her up to the large farmhouse complex, and let her out on her leash to get a drink from a bowl of water the girl's mother had brought out. Meanwhile, Capt Clay was doing reports inside his Cruiser on the built-in laptop – no more clipboards and paper reports for them –, Deputy Alex had taken pics and Clay said there was no need to have either the PA State Troopers or CSI in for anything further. I was relieved that I wouldn't have to go through any BS with them again, after yesterday's bank robbery and intense questioning, primarily by the FBI Agents. I don't like Federal Jackbooted Thugs at all, and 75% of them act like that, whether it's FBI, BATF, ICE, DEA, Customs or Secret Service. They're all on a "personal power trip", IMO. Clay agreed 100% that since they weren't there, taking fire as I was, there was no reason for the harsh verbal treatment of any local LEO (law enforcement officer), especially a volunteer like me.

I unloaded the AR-10, stowed it in its Eagle Carrying Bag and the loaded magazines back into my Satchel Bag, for the ride home. The family's vet, and the one I'd chosen to care for Jenny when I found her, Dr Jayson Martin DMV, arrived and tended to one of the family's lab dogs, who'd been slightly grazed by the perp's deer rifle. She'd be okay, and he was amazed at how healthy and big Jenny was, in about a year's time. We agreed that Jenny was due for some needed rabies and distemper shots, now that I was taking her outside, and I'd call his office for an appointment next time I was up here, which would be next weekend. I said goodbye to all, and drove back to The Cabin. It was 16:10hrs (4:10pm).

After feeding & watering Jenny, cleaning the Beowulf .50cal on 5 sheets of newspaper on the Dining Room Table with the .50cal Hoppe's Premium Field Gun Cleaning Kit, I laid down on the large, comfy couch for a short nap; I was tired from the day's activity of off-duty/on-duty with Jenny along, but glad that I didn't have to shoot or kill that drunk, redneck asshole in the livery barn. I slept for a solid 2 hours, being somewhat "sleep-deprived" from last night. All my laundry, changing bed linens, cleaning, dishes etc were done, and I was ready to leave for York in another 2-3 hours, after a nice dinner of Pork Chops, Coleslaw & Roasted Potatoes. I washed and dried the dishes, and began to pack my gear. I'd bought 4 new Extra Firm Support Laura Ashley Fiberfill Pillows for my two beds at the condo, at the local (York) Bed, Bath & Beyond® Store (reg $49.99, on sale for $19.99) and would pick-up 4 more Extra Firm Support Pillows for the two beds here at The Cabin, for next weekend. I also bought 2 each for Mom & Dad, back in York. She turned 88 on Friday, July 15th; Dad turned 87 on April 14th and had a heart attack 6 weeks ago (is doing very well with his new pacemaker, thankyouverymuch), and they could use the Firm Support Laura Ashley Fiberfill Pillows just fine, instead of the older, softer units they've used for years.

I called Randy and put him back-in-charge of The Cabin, Jenny and splitting/seasoning another 1–2 cords (a cord = 2ft wide x 4ft high x 8ft long stack) of split firewood, to add to the Firewood Storage Shed in the Backyard's 10 cords just 100ft from the back door, as the Firewood Stack on the Back Porch was enough for now. If it was just–cut wood, it'd take 3–4 months to "dry and season", and then be fit for burning; otherwise there'd be too much sap in the wet wood and could cause a disastrous chimney and house fire. We're almost into Fall and Winter's not far behind, despite the heat/humidity and drought that we're going through right now. The 30 "Princeton"® American Elms (Ulmus Americana) which Tim Swanson and I had installed last Fall were 16–18ft tall now, and beginning to caliper-up nicely, and would be great shade trees in 20-30 years. The ones we lined the 1,000ft driveway with caught a lot of water run–off from the backside of the 43–acre property, and were nearly 25ft tall already. I was most pleased and would feed them all heavily with Holly–Tone® Fertilizer in mid-November, and again on March 15th in 2012. We worked our asses off for two weekends installing them, and Tim is a good friend for helping me.

With my rifles cleaned and stowed in the Jeep, I loaded–in my gear, brushed, fed, watered and said goodbye to Jenny until next Saturday afternoon when I'd return, checked all windows and doors, armed the building and left for I–83 south at 19:00hrs (7pm). I stopped at Roy's Shell Gas & Service Station to gas–up for the trip, since the Saturday & Sunday's activity had used–up more than ½ a tank, and headed for York and my condo in East York. Murphy was happy to see me, and I watered & fed him, unpacked and laid–out everything I needed for breakfast at 04:15hrs (4:15am). The new pillows would, hopefully, give me some serious sleep after last night's lousy trip to la–la land at The Cabin; first time that's happened. Usually, I sleep like a baby when I'm there. This trip was very different and I'm wondering if the 3 shootings at the bank robbery on Saturday had anything to do with it. Dunno, for sure.

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