After a couple weeks, I started to stay the night at his house. I’d show up Sundays after my shift ended (near 2hr drive put me at his place 1230am or so.) After another few weeks, and a few “close calls” at work, he expressed grave concern for my welfare and asked me to get a job not only closer to home, but safer and easier on his mental health. How sweet, right? I applied at the base exchange, I was now working both jobs since the exchange was part time.
Now I had stickers on my car. Contractors ID in my wallet, I was good to go. No more passes and him retrieving me from the gate. By this point, all the civilian guards at the base got to know me quite well. Even “looking the other way” when they knew I had stayed overnight on the base. Now, here is where things start to get tricky.
One weekend while at the Boys Ranch, I called and talked to “John,” and he was deeply distraught. I had asked what happened, and he told me of this girl (“Lisa”) that I had in fact been leery of, due to her behavior. A little risque, and very forward with him. I had told him repeatedly to not ever be alone with her. This nite, he had. Everyone was hanging out at the house. BBQ. Drinking. Socializing. An AirSoft game was in the rise, and someone had forgotten their gear. They, without thinking ahead, had offered to go the barracks to retrieve it. He and her. Alone. He stated she was being “weird” after they got back, and he was now worried.
Maybe a week passes.
I had spent so much time visiting “John” and working on the base, I was staying quite often. I lived and hour and a half North, the drive was a bit long. Now I had many items at “John’s” house, had been leaving my cats for my father to tend to far days at a time. “John” suggested that I move in. Well, I guess it isn’t such a bad idea, right?
Wrong. This is where things started to spin out of control (looking back) but I did not see a single solitary red flag. I had met all his friends (subordinates up thru supervisors), hung out with his 13yr old son, we all got along. Liked one another. Played AirSoft in an olive grove together every weekend. Or thru housing, if we got the late night itch. Through my work, I had made friends with one of the military base cops, and if he got a call about our area, he’d intervene and give us the “no-no.” Let me back up a step. I met, um….”Mike”…through my second base job (explanation later.)
I came home early Sunday morning from work at the Ranch (wasn’t feeling well), “John” and “Mark” are nowhere to be found. No note. No messages. Nothing. Not answering cell. Door to fridge wide open. What is going on here? 6 hours later, I finally get a call. “John”, in Arizona. Yes, folks, Arizona. Did I mention we’re in Northern Cali at this point?
He was approached at work on Friday after I left for the Ranch, and was told that he’s being brought up on sexual assault charges. Who? We don’t know yet. I talk him into turning around and head back home. Meanwhile, I wash, starch, iron/press his uniform and fully shine his boots. He arrives just after midnight. Tells me he must be in the office at 0800 for formal reading and who is bringing the charges. I asked why he left. He said he “panicked” that he “just knew it was that bitch, Lisa.”
To be continued…