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World War, 1939-1945; Letter writing; United States. Army
Back of envelope states that Davis never solved the murder. He writes that he has solved every case so far. but that is just luck that he has never gotten a bad case. Davis describes how often he lacks the benefit of a scene of the crime to work with while solving a case. Davis says he arrived on his current case an hour and a half after the crime in an open park in the pouring rain with fifty people there. Davis talks about the M.P.s ruining things: letting witnesses go and driving over the crime scene. Davis said he still had one witness, the woman that was shot. He said that not many people would want to testify against Germans for an American murder. Davis notes that the only thing they found at the scene of the crime is a fountain pen that they believe belonged to the killer. An M.P. was carrying it and got his finger prints on it so they could not get the killer's prints. Regardless Davis thinks they will crack it, mentioning that there are some leads they have yet to follow up on. Davis is working with a German homicide detective named Schmitt and an Agent McKeon who does not speak German.
Agent R. Davis
13 CID APO 170
% PM NY
U.S. ARMY POSTAL SERVICE APO
170 JUL 24 1946
VIA AIR MAIL
Mrs R L DAVIS
12 July 1946
This has been a busy week for me. Both Brady and I have murder cases. Brady is chafing because, altho’ he has the two murderers apprehended, he can-not determine which one fired the shot. Since one of the negros is a complete rascal, and the other is syphillitically [sic] idiotic, there seems to be little chance to clear the question up. Brady has even resorted to the other last chance, a dramatic re-enacting of the crime. The reenactment went smoothly up to the point of the killing shot. Then the old, dozen-times rehearsed controversy broke out again. Its really hard on Brady, who is an exacting perfectionist in such items.
Stacked over in a corner of our living room is a pile of junks Brady found in the room of the house where the idiotic nigger has hid himself for four months, as a deserter. A portable typewriter, binoculars, a change of clothes, a foreign pistol, a stolen U.S. corbine, these were his miserable jug of wine and book of verse for his sojourn in the wilderness. His “thou” was a miserable German girl, who will bear a miserable bundle of humanity in a few months. For amusement, or God knows what, he murdered. A ghastly existence. And yet, in a way, he achieved the twisted ideal at which so many of our poor niggers aim over here; complete amorality, an absolute freedom from compulsion, and the subservience of some white people. But now, the honeymoon is over, and he’s playing his lunacy for all its worth.
Brady got another case, a couple of months ago, similarly impossible of ultimate solution, but when even worse because there was a much less definite approximation to the truth. At an EM club, after the issurance of the monthly liquor ration (a bad time for me), all the totally drunk soldiers engaged in brawls, name-calling etc. In the confusion one EM was stabbed. Altho’ it was a bad blow, the poor bastard was so drunk that he did not even realize he was wounded until he accidentally noted his hand was bloody. Altho’ by superhuman effort Brady pro-duced the likely suspect, further ^definite proof was out. The victim hadn’t even felt it, let alone seen anything. The accused was himself so drunk that night, that he took refuge in not remembering anything. Suspiciously, Brady took him to the hospital for analysis. They found out the guy was a chronic drunkard of the worst type. Even more discouraging, truth serum (scropomaline [sic]) failed to produce results. The fellow just didn’t remember what had happened. They pumped him so full of the serum that he got groggy, but the thing wouldn’t be cleaned up.
The case was “solved” by the Doctor recommending a medical discharge. (SECTION 8, NERVOUS or “nutty” condition.)
Not a very cheerful letter, now that I re-read it. I’m sorry if its too morbid.