Brothers
Chapter 4: Court

Copyright© 2015 by maypop

Girilal woke up at the noise of Boyd and Loyd studying the Bible at the table. He went to the wash basin to wash his face and hands.

Church and watching these two was playing a toll on him. He sat and listened to them and made a decision to start going to church on Sunday.

He bowed his head when Boyd started praying. "Lord, please help me to start going to church," He thought in his heart.

He was amazed to hear Boyd suddenly say in his prayer, "Lord, please touch Girilal's heart and help him to want to go to church."

"Girilal, when we get to court do not volunteer anything to me or Mr. Reed. I will ask yes and no questions, so just say yes and no, ok?" Boyd asked.

"Yes sir." Girilal answered.

It was six-thirty when the three entered the dining room, only to find everyone, including the Judge, already eating. The demeanor seemed straight forward and upbeat by everyone.

Boyd nodded to Loyd and then he eased over to Miss Caldwell, handed her three twenty dollar gold pieces and said, "Please don't disclose who paid. Just tell everyone the food is on the house this morning. If there is any more needed, just ask."

Miss Caldwell smiled and said, "Ok, it will be our little secret. I am sure this will be more than enough."

Once everyone had ordered, Boyd stood and banged his spoon on his cup. "Everyone bow your head for grace for the food and that justice will be served," he said.

Sharply at eight-thirty Judge Jim Nixon called the courtroom to order. "This courtroom for the State of Indiana will be called to order and Girilal will be tried for first-degree murder. After the Jurors were selected, the Judge said, "Prosecutor, you may call your first witness."

Harry stood and said, "Your Honor, I object to my witnesses being isolated in the jail and are not allowed in the courtroom. The jail is across the street and it will take too long to hold the trial."

"Overruled, the defense has requested this and I find it to be acceptable for the trial. Now, call your first witness," the Judge said.

"The State calls Robert Sanders, your Honor," Harry Reed said with a little irritation present.

"It only took about two minutes for Robert to appear before the clerk. Both eyes were very black. It was plain to see he had been in a fight.

"Place your hand on the Bible. Do you swear that what you are about to say is the whole truth, so help you God?" the clerk asked.

"Yes, I do," Robert said, as he had been in the Judge's court before, besides there was land to be had.

He took his seat in the witness chair and Harry began by saying, "Would you say your whole name, please."

"My name is Robert Sanders. My friends all call me Bob," said Robert looking over at Boyd as though to say your time is coming.

"Mr. Sanders, what is your occupation for the ones who don't know you," Harry asked in a quite voice.

"We, my brother and me, own a big spread out south of town," Bob answered.

"You happened to be at a store close to your ranch Tuesday, didn't you?" Harry asked again in a quiet voice.

Before Bob could answer, Boyd stood and said in a calm voice, "Your Honor, I object to the question. I heard that Mr. Reed was an accomplished lawyer. I am sure he knows that question is leading the witness towards an easy answer."

"Sustained. Mr. Reed, you will refrain from guiding the witness on what to say. Ask the questions properly." the Judge said.

Harry knew the law. He also knew Boyd was not going to be pushed around, so he would play the court game long enough to fry this kid. He couldn't be more than twenty-five. This was probably his first case fresh out of law school. He would teach him on-the-job training would not work.

"Bob, where were you at about eight o'clock Tuesday morning," Harry asked.

"Objection, your Honor, I know Mr. Sanders said his friends call him Bob, but this is not his porch swing. It is a courtroom, Your Honor," Boyd said in his calm court voice.

"Mr. Reed, you know how to conduct a trial in a proper manner. You will do it in a proper way or you yourself will be held in contempt of court," said Judge Nixon. He was enjoying working with a lawyer who could put the likes of Harry Reed in his place.

Harry did not like to be threatened, but this was no place to fight back. He rephrased the question, "Mr. Sanders, where were you Tuesday at eight a.m?"

"Five of us were at Bobby Westclox's store," Robert said, as he looked at Boyd as if to say, your time will come.

"What were you there for?" Harry asked.

"We were just going to buy a few things from the store." Robert answered.

"Is the store in the house?" Harry asked.

"No, it is on the side," Robert answered.

"Was Bobby there?" Harry asked.

"Yes, he came outside and was talking to us," Robert answered.

"Mr. Sanders, would you tell the court in your own words what happened next," Harry asked.

"We had just ridden up and were talking while sitting on our horses when Girilal, or whatever his name is, came out of the barn with his rifle in his hand. He went crazy and started shooting! First, he shot Bobby and then turned the gun toward us! He fired one shot, hitting Matt in the arm. Then, as if by fate, his gun jammed and we were able to grab him before he got it unjammed. Matt was shot in the arm, but not too bad, so we sent him to town to see the Doc and tell the Sheriff to come out. We were about three miles from town when the Sheriff met us," Robert said.

Harry went over to the table in front of the Judge's bench and picked up the rifle laying on it. He held it up and said to Robert, "Is this the rifle you and your friends took away from Mr. Girilal?"

"Yes, it is the one. I recognize it from the design on the stock."

"Your Honor, I would like to make this gun State Exhibit One."

"With no objections from the defense, the gun will be State Exhibit One," the Judge said.

"No objections, your Honor," Boyd said.

"No further questions, your Honor," Harry suddenly closed it off with the thought nothing else needed to be said.

"Defense, you may cross examine," the Judge said.

Boyd stood up and looked at Robert for a moment as though nothing was wrong. He then walked over to the evidence table and picked up the rifle. He then held it up where Robert could see it and asked, "Mr. Sanders, is this rifle the rifle you just said is the one that Mr. Girilal used. Is that correct?"

"Yes, it is the one," Robert said.

Boyd took the rifle and put it up to his nose and took a big whiff loud enough for the Jurors to hear. Then as he laid it back on the table he very slowly looked at the Jurors, and slowly looked at Robert, then at the Judge and said, "I have no more questions for this witness at this time but I would like to recall him later on in the trial."

"Does the Prosecutor want to ask any more questions for the witness at this time," the Judge asked.

Harry listened to the cross examining of Robert. He then saw when Boyd smelled the gun. He did not catch the reasoning of that. What? No more questions? This trial was going to be over before it starts. He must like the smell of burnt gun powder.

"No, your Honor, I do not," Harry answered.

"Bailiff, take this witness back and inform the other deputy not to let anyone talk to him nor does he let him talk to anyone. Please wait until the Prosecutor gives you the name of his next witness. Prosecutor, call your next witness."

"The State calls Gilbert Sanders, your Honor," Harry said.

"Bailiff, do the switch," the Judge said.

Gilbert walked into the court and the court clerk met him to swear him in. "I don't need your help, woman!" Gilbert said belligerently.

"Gilbert, how would you like to go to jail for five years starting now?" Judge Nixon looked at Gilbert at the same time he slammed the gavel down on the pad loud enough for the witness in the jail to hear it.

Gilbert suddenly realized he was in way over his head. He was about to get a whole lot more land and had better be nice for a few more days.

"I am sorry, your Honor. I had a real bad night and did not mean to take it out on the court, sir" Gilbert said trying to sound as meek as he could.

Judge Nixon looked at him for a few minutes to let him sweat. If he wasn't about to be dangling at the end of a rope in a few days, he would definitely be in chains about now. He then said, "Ok, you take the oath with your hand on the Bible. The rest of this trial, if you snarl up on just one answer you will be in jail, do you understand?"

"Yes sir," Gilbert said as he put his hand on the Bible.

"Gilbert Sanders, do you swear to tell the truth so help you God," the clerk asked.

"I do," Gilbert said.

Harry Reed did not like Gilbert. He wished he could get him found guilty without Bob being found guilty too, but he had to go along with it until he could find a way to separate the two. It was probably Gilbert that talked Bob into the killing in the fist place.

"Gilbert, where were you at about eight o'clock Tuesday morning."

"Five of us were at Bobby Westclox's store," Gilbert said as he looked at Boyd but broke the eye contact. Boyd would wait.

"What were you there for?" Harry asked.

"We were just going to buy a few things from the store." Gilbert answered.

"Was Bobby there?" Harry asked.

"Yes, he came outside and was talking to us," Gilbert answered.

"Mr. Sanders, would you tell the court in your own words what happened next," Harry asked.

"We had just ridden up and were talking while sitting on our horses when the Indian, I don't remember what his name is, came out of the barn with his rifle in his hand. He went crazy and started shooting, first he shot Bobby then turned the gun toward us and fired one shot, hitting Matt in the arm. Then, as if by fate, his gun broke down and we were able to take him before he got away. Matt was shot in the arm, but not too bad so we sent him to town to see the Doc and tell the Sheriff to come out. We were about three miles from town when the Sheriff met us," Gilbert said.

"Is the Indian you refer to in the courtroom?" Harry asked.

"Objection, your Honor. Mr. Reed knows the defendant's name. He should at least have respect in the courtroom," Boyd explained.

"Sustained. Mr. Reed, you will show respect in the courtroom," the Judge said.

"Is Girilal in the courtroom?" Harry asked.

"He is seated beside Boyd, sir," Gilbert said pointing to Girilal.

Harry went over to the table in front of the Judge's bench and picked up the rifle laying on it. He held it up and said to Gilbert, "Is this the rifle you and your friends took away from Mr. Girilal?"

"Yes, it is the one. I recognize it from the design on the stock." said Gilbert.

"No further questions, your Honor," Harry suddenly closed it off with the thought nothing else needed to be said.

"Defense, you may cross examine," the Judge said.

Boyd stood up and looked at Gilbert for a moment, then walked over to the evidence table and picked up the rifle. He then held it up where Gilbert could see it and asked, "Mr. Sanders, is this rifle the rifle you just said is the one that Mr. Girilal used. Is that correct?"

"Yes, it is the one he used to kill Bobby," Gilbert said.

Boyd took the rifle and put it up to his nose and took a big whiff, again loud enough for the Jurors to hear, and said, "I have no more questions for this witness at this time, but I would like to recall him later on in the trial."

"Does the Prosecutor want to ask any more questions for the witness at this time," the Judge asked.

Harry listened to the cross examining of Gilbert. He then saw when Boyd smelled the gun again. This was not like any trial he had ever been in. Harry sat down at his desk for a minute looking at his paper work.

"No, your Honor, I do not," Harry answered.

"Bailiff, take this witness back and inform the other deputy not to let anyone talk to him nor is he to be allowed to talk to anyone. Please wait until the Prosecutor gives you the name of his next witness. Prosecutor, call your next witness,"

"The State calls Matt Addams, your Honor," Harry said.

"Bailiff, do the switch," the Judge said.

Matt Addams walked into the courtroom straight up to the clerk and put his hand on the Bible.

"Matt Addams, do you swear to tell the truth so help you God?" the clerk asked.

"I do," Matt said.

Harry Reed was afraid of Matt. He was a hot head and would kill just to be killing, but Bob liked him for protection.

"Matt Addams, where were you at about eight o'clock Tuesday morning?"

"Five of us were at Bobby Westclox's store," Matt said. He looked straight ahead, staring a hole through the back wall as though there was a hole he could see through.

"What were you there for?" Harry asked.

"Bob wanted to buy a few things from his general store." Matt answered.

"Was Bobby there?" Harry asked.

"Yes, he was outside and started talking to us," Matt answered.

"Mr. Addams, would you tell the court in your own words what happened next," Harry asked.

"We had just rode up and were talkin' while sittin' on our horses when the man seated over there, 'he pointed' I don't remember what his name is, came out of the barn with his rifle in his hand. He went crazy and started shootin'. First, he shot me in the arm. It knocked me off the horse. I was dazed, but saw when he shot Bobby." Matt said.

Harry went over to the table in front of the Judge's bench and picked up the rifle laying on it. He held it up and said to Matt "Is this the rifle your friends took away from Mr. Girilal?"

"Yes, it is the one. I recognize it from the design on the stock," said Matt.

"No further questions, your Honor," Harry said.

"Defense, you may cross examine," the Judge said.

Boyd stood up, walked over to the evidence table and picked up the rifle. He then held it up where Matt could see it and asked, "Mr. Addams, is this rifle the rifle you just said is the one that Mr. Girilal used. Is that correct?"

"Yes, that's it." Matt said.

Boyd took the rifle and put it up to his nose and, again, took a big whiff loud enough for the Jurors to hear, and said, "I have no more questions for this witness at this time but I would like to recall him later on in the trial."

"Does the Prosecutor want to ask any more questions for the witness at this time?" the Judge asked.

Harry listened to the cross examining of Matt. He then saw when Boyd smelled the gun again.

Harry decided that Boyd just did not have what it takes to be a lawyer. This case was over. He had just called three eye witnesses. That proved that Indian was guilty. Any Juror in the country would find him guilty.

"No, your Honor, I do not," he said, "and I rest my case."

"Bailiff, take this witness back and inform the other deputy not to let anyone talk to him nor does he let him talk to anyone.

"Is the Defense ready to call their first witness?" Judge Nixon asked.

Boyd stood and looked at the Jurors and said, "Defense calls Nathan Williams to the stand.

Nathan Williams, a well groomed man in his early forty's stood before the clerk, put his hand on the Bible, swore to tell the truth, and sat down in the witness chair.

"Mr. Williams, I know that most, if not all the Jurors know your name, but for the court's sake, would you please give the court your whole name?" Boyd began.

"Yes, my name is Nathan Robert Williams," Nathan answered with a strong proud voice.

"Thank you, Mr. Williams. I do not perceive to know myself how well you are known or respected in this area, except I saw you and your family at church last night. Usually someone that would be in church on Wednesday night would be well respected.

"I object, your Honor. Irrelevant!" Harry Reed shouted.

Before the Judge could respond Boyd spoke, "I withdraw the question. I will get right to the point, and let the Jurors decide. Mr. Williams, were you sitting in Mr. Bobby Westclox's living room about a month ago when the accused men rode up to his store?"

There is more of this chapter...
The source of this story is Finestories

To read the complete story you need to be logged in:
Log In or
Register for a Free account (Why register?)

Get No-Registration Temporary Access*

* Allows you 3 stories to read in 24 hours.