2007-03-13: Baiting the Hook


Viola_icon.gif Matt_icon.gif Ethan_icon.gif Judah_icon.gif

Summary: Parkman and Demsky approach the Lieutenant with a request.

Date It Happened: March 13, 2007

Baiting the Hook

NYC - Police Station - Viola's Office

Thank God or the deity of your choice for small children and the draw of playing at a buddy's house. Parkman might not be able to survive as a detective with a co-dad wrapped around another detective's finger without it. He's only been back from shuttling her for a few minutes before he and Demsky move toward Viola's office. It's not a route that Matt is 100% behind, but he has to agree with his partner on one point - it's their only viable option at this point. Parkman straightens his tie and stands outside the Lieutenant's office, waiting for Demsky to knock and lead them in. Showtime.

Truth be told, Demsky isn't any happier about this than Parkman is. Dressed in plainclothes — a pair of denim jeans, a dress shirt and a brown leather jacket worn overtop for warmth — the detective looks sharp, but the expression on his face is a weary and haggard one. He's spent the whole afternoon in his cubicle with the files belonging to the Virginia Gray case — crime scene photographs, witness transcripts, blood slides, the tapes from the interrogation room. Everything. It is with only the slightest hint of hesitation that he raps his knuckles against Viola's door and announces himself. "Lieutenant," he says loudly, "it's Demsky and Parkman. If you have a minute?"

If Demsky and Parkman are waiting for Viola to answer them or to open the door, they're sorely mistaken. That would be because after a couple of minutes of them waiting, the lieutenant appears behind them, holding a paper cup of coffee and staring at the backs of the two detectives in something almost like amusement. She clears her throat to announce her presence behind them and not in the office that they assume her to be in. "Detectives. You my new door decorations?" Assuming they'll step aside to let her through, she reaches for her door and opens it. "Tell me something good."

Ethan is walking along with Viola. Cup of bad station coffee in one hand, a thick evidence case file in the other. Looks like he and the lieutenant were snagging a quick break together. Coffee break that is. He keeps his mouth shut as Vi gives the two detectives a hard time. Really? He likes watching her at work. Especially when it's not him getting busted.

Matt stiffens a little at the Lieutenant's appearance and, of course, stands aside. He follows in behind her and Ethan, waiting for the others to settle themselves before he too takes a seat. Something good is certainly not what he and Demsky have to offer, in his opinion. But something is better than nothing.

Judah doesn't waste any time getting straight to the point. He's always been blunt, even if that bluntness isn't always intentional. "We don't have a leg to stand on with the Virginia Gray case." He doesn't wait to let that sink in before continuing. If he pauses, even for an instant, it would give Viola an invitation to cut him off. "We've been over everything. There's no evidence linking Gabriel Gray to the scene of his mother's murder, and the only confession we have was made under duress. I'm sure you've seen the tapes. We take him to court and he'll walk, just like he walked here. Investigation's compromised."

"And even assuming we found any fingerprints on the scene," Parkman adds quickly, "it's too likely that they'd be dismissed as irrelevant. She /was/ his mother, and we don't have anything that says he didn't visit her often." Especially since the FBI can't even tag Sylar for any of the murders his committed across the country. "Secondly, he's a nutcase. Even if we did get him before a jury, without hard evidence, they'll lock him up in a mental institution at best. If we're going to hook him up to Old Sparky, we need a case that a lawyer can't break with a nuke."

It's true, Viola wants to cut off both Parkman and Demsky after their first point. But, she doesn't. She slowly sinks into the chair behind her desk and lets her eyes shift from the two detectives while they make their case. Definitely not good news. "I have. And I know." She's got a Fed breathing down her neck about this, a Captain who's all but ballistic and the press just waiting for anything to be tossed their way. "I take it you haven't come here to tell me things I already know."

Ethan nods to Parkman and Demsky as he follows the little group into his wife's office. He sets the case file on Vi's desk and just stands to the side. He's familiar with the evidence, having gone over it multiple times. It galls him just as it does every other cop in the precinct that Gray is walking and the evidence doesn't add up. This is a tough case, and it's one that's hard to let go of. His normally smiling face is set in grim lines as he listens.

"What Parkman means to say, Lieutenant, is we can still nail Gray. Just not for his mother's murder." Judah glances over at Ethan and gives the other man a brief nod of acknowledgment. He'd been so focused on the task at hand that he hadn't noticed the lab rat until now. "He claims he's killed dozens of others, and after what he pulled with Damaris, I believe him. Either we get him on one of those, or we tail him until he cocks up. It's only a matter of time before he feels the need to kill again, and the first person he's going to go after is her. You know it, I know it, the whole damn precinct knows it."

It's possibly common knowledge that the bird has flown the coop too. Even if it puts Mohinder in danger, maybe his proximity to Damaris is a good thing. "If we put a couple of guys on his tail, undercover," and a little girl with an atlas, "we stand the chance of catching him with some solid evidence." Matt swallows, then adds, "The Virginia Gray case is a small sacrifice, but there's also the possibility of being able to throw that on top of whatever else we can bring him in for and nail him on."

"So you're suggesting to use Damaris as bait." It's not a question, Viola can already tell that's what they're proposing. "I have no problem with that as long as she's well covered and if she agrees to it." Absently, she slides the case file Ethan puts down over so that it's sitting in front of her. This is department stuff and while she loves her husband, she doesn't want to be interrupted at the moment. "First you have to find him to tail him," she points out. "We have no idea where he's holed himself up. And if we lose the Virginia Gray case we lose jurisdiction."

The Gray case is a bitter pill to swallow, Ethan thinks. Knowing damn well there's always going to be a lost case where the guy walks and it's left sticking in everyone's craw. He quietly slips from the room as he hasn't anything new to add to the case, and he doesn't mind taking the back burner at the moment.

"Hold a press conference, if that's what you have to do. Tell the media we have another suspect and that Gabriel Gray is no longer a person of interest in light of new evidence. It'll allow us to keep the case open, and if we're lucky, it should draw him out of hiding as well." Judah frowns at Viola, his eyes dark. "Damaris is bait whether or not we go fishing. After what he did to her, she should /already/ be covered. Are you telling me that we don't have guys posted at her apartment?"

Even without Damaris, it won't be hard to tail Sylar. But Matt isn't about to say specifically why. He sits quietly, though he fidgets a bit. If only to crowd out his on thoughts, Matt slowly turns up the volume knob to allow others in.

"No, she's covered," Viola reassures Judah. "I had guys posted at the hospital and they're at her apartment now." Even though Ethan tries to leave quietly, she follows him with her eyes when he goes. She doesn't say anything due to already being involved in this conversation and when he's out the door, she returns her focus on the two detectives in front of her. "But they're plain clothes. You want her to be a big flashing sign and I'm going to have to police cars out in front of her house." Reverse psychology for perps. "I'm going to have to the Captain about having a press conference. That's not my call. The ideas are good, but if we can't get him on anything else he's done, you're not making me reassured that we'll be able to get him in the chair just by tailing him. We need smoking guns, witnesses and some DNA to make it a nice wrapped package of hard evidence."

"Funny you should mention DNA, Lieutenant. Damaris picked up Gray outside of Reed Street Laboratories. I've been doing a little legwork. The civilian who helped her bag him is a man named Mohinder Suresh, and he's the son of Chandra Suresh. The same Chandra Suresh who shows up on Gray's phone records. The same Chandra Suresh who turned up dead September of last year. I think there's a connection." Judah shifts his weight from one foot to the other. "Chandra Suresh wrote a book called Activating Evolution in which he claimed certain individuals had developed superhuman abilities. Gray was going on about the same thing in that interrogation room. We'll get you the evidence you need. All we're asking is that you buy us some time."

Matt wiggles in his seat and slips his phone out. "Chandra Suresh is dead," he says rather calmly. "His son, Mohinder, however, is alive and kicking. There's a possibility he might be able to give us something to go on, either about the nature of his father's work or, hopefully, Gray himself. If you'll excuse me," and Parkman starts to rise. "There's no time like the present." With that, Parkman is out the door, the phone already halfway to his ear. It's the land line at the apartment, however - there's no sense in calling Mohinder for real when he can simply talk to him later tonight.

After Judah makes his claims, Viola stays silent for a few moments, weighing her options. There aren't many to weigh, but they all are important. It's weak, but it's better than anything else they've got yet. "Look, I can't promise you much time. Diverting the press by saying we've got another suspect is going to work for maybe two days before they realize we don't have anyone. And it's going to look bad on the stand when they say we thought he wasn't our suspect for a little while. But I'll see what I can do." Matt leaving without even really listening gets an eyebrow raise out of Viola, but she'll bring that one up later. There are more important things to handle now. "Bring me something we can use and I'll try to keep the Captain from tearing the precinct down brick by brick."

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