The Steal

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Chapter 26          Robert Gregg

Chief Superintendent Wragg was relieved that the decision over Robert Gregg was taken out of his hands, although Gregg had ultimately saved Wragg’s life by his heroic actions and this had to be taken into account when Gregg’s trial was in full swing – it might tend to be too much in favour of his action and almost condone on the murder of Samantha Dodd.

Robert Gregg and Sue Arnold had been transported at great speed to the local hospital.  Robert was in a critical condition and was placed on a life support machine for a brief period of time.  The operation to remove two bullets from his body had been done successfully.  His recovery room was clinically sealed and armed police were in attendance.

In another part of the hospital Sue Arnold was recovering from the gunshot wound in her thigh and was making steady progress.  There was also the presence of a plain clothes policeman on duty outside her door.  When able, Sue would be whisked away secretly to a safe house.

Justice had to be seen to be done for the crime that Robert Gregg had executed and he was sent to prison for ten years.  The public had not created a stir when the sentence was announced – only one person had thought that justice had not been fulfilled and he was going to make sure that Gregg would feel the full force of his wrath and he was going to make sure this time that within a year he would be dead.

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Raymond Dodd was a wanted man and his face would be plastered all over the London area and maybe beyond.  His course of action was to retire to his country house.  He would have to change his appearance. Anything surgical was out of the question.  But the police had stipulated that he should have his hair cut when he first entered the police force and now he would have to let it grow.  He had taken the liberty of removing things from the police stores and stripping the motorbike of certain objects he thought he might be able to utilize and use independently.  His house was built like a fortress which he had painstakingly worked at over weekends and off-duty times.  He had attended many shooting competitions and had won cups and shields and more ammunition than was necessary.  It was so artfully done that none of the organisers of such events had noticed.  In fact he had an arsenal of guns of various types and bullets to fit all of them.  He was a force to be reckoned with.

Within a month his hair was quite long and now it was possible to go shopping without anyone recognizing him with his turned up collar and cap crammed firmly on his head and darkish glasses.  First he bought a hair dye and other useful commodities.   He needed transport as everyone knew his bike and car.  He couldn’t leave the house in any of those.  He caught a train to the next county and went to the nearest garage and bought a brand new motorbike with all the trimmings using the cash he had hidden in his house.  Having ridden home, he had to think of a way of getting rid of his old car and motorbike and this was not going to be easy.  He set about dismantling the bike and chucking all the bits in the car.  Dusk was approaching and everything checked out – he had his vacuum flask and sandwiches and it was time to set off on his journey.  Opening the garage as quietly as he could, he moved his car forward clear enough for the garage door to close.  He waited awhile, but no one was in the vicinity and he drove off.  After just over an hour and a half, he came across a wide expanse of water.  It was a disused quarry that had been filled to blend in with the surrounding countryside. He found a suitable slope and wiped every part of the car.  He had searched all the compartments of the vehicle before leaving the house and any incriminating documents were removed.  He set aside his vacuum flask and sandwiches.  Opening the car door he released the brake and the car sped forward and made a very noisy splash and gurgled as if it was a drowning person and very slowly it disappeared from view.  He was saddened about the loss of his old bike which he had had since he was teenager and how lovingly he had looked after it.  He sat there eating his sandwiches and sipping his coffee.  After an hour had passed he decided to leave.  It was close to half past nine. Perhaps if he could find the railway station he would be able to catch a train back home.  He didn’t want to cadge a lift home, because if there was a hint they recognized who he was, he’d have to kill them and that would add another serious problem to his already complicated life.

Life had passed Raymond with speed and how he had turned into a killer was a mystery to him.  He tried to argue with himself that if it hadn’t been for his parents denying his inheritance none of this would have happened and he would be an innocent bystander and honest man.  He couldn’t go back now, even though he hadn’t actually killed anyone since his parents which he’d discounted as being murder, he thought about it as being a service, helping them over their pains of growing old.  He had had a good try at being good but everybody knew him to be a potential killer.  He thought about Roger Grey.  He had murdered people right, left and centre and no-one knew his identity.  He had given his dad a gentle push down the stairs and given his mum some poison to relieve her misery of suffering and everybody he felt that everybody knew him. It wasn’t fair!

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