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Tiggertown’s Daily Crime News Report

By: Denishea Young

Posted March 23, 2021

Disclaimer: The story, all names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this story are fictitious. No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred. No person or entity associated with this story received payment or anything of value, or entered into any agreement, in connection with the depiction of tobacco products. No animals were harmed in the making of the creation of this story. Please Enjoy

 

     "We are live in 5, 4, 3"

Silent finger counting 2, 1 and a finger point at Angela.

Angela, an African American news anchor with straight hair, stares directly into the camera and begins her monologue.

     “Today I come to you with a most disturbing story. We had an individual confess to alleged attempted murder while being filmed by one of our onsite cameramen.”

 

Brad, Angela’s co-host, jerks his attention away from his shuffling of papers and stares at his co-host in astonishment.  “What… No really!?!”

 

     Turning to her cohost Angela says “Yes indeed Brad.” Turning back to the camera she continues. “The people attending the event that was filmed when questioned stated that they were not surprised by the confession of the suspect. Indeed they felt it had been coming since the arrival of the other party to the group.”

 

 At this Brad looks confused and opens his mouth to ask a question but before he can Angela continues.

 

     “At the event the participants were allowed to test and try out the construction equipment. It was hoped by the owner and the planning committee that it would bring awareness to the availability and capability of the equipment and foster interest in future employment. Here is what the owner, Mac Henderson of the Lionheart Builders had to say.”

 

The screen cuts to an earlier captured bit from Mac Henderson.

 

     “Sir what do you have to say about the confession by the alleged attempted murderer?”

 

     “Well… uh… ummm.” He lifts his hat to scratch his balding head. Taking a deep breath, he pulls the bill down and continues. “Not much really. I mean what is there to say?”

 

     “You don’t feel that the confession of the alleged attempted murder was a fruitious event and has now resulted in the stopping of a person’s untimely death.”

 

     “Well now…” starts the owner. Before he can continue, he is interrupted by another interviewing reporter.

 

     “Could the opening of such events to the lay people who are not licensed in the handling of heavy equipment and who upon getting a chance to fool around with such equipment contribute to increase of epinephrine and testosterone in the system? Thereby resulting in the increase desire to commit murder.”

 

 As the second reporter speaks Mac Henderson stops messing with the brim of his hat and stares in astonishment which quickly morphs into fury. “Now you look here…” starts Mac but before he can continue the clip ends abruptly and goes back to Angela.

 

     “Well as we can see this news has greatly upset the owner of Lionheart Builders. As I am sure it has upset many of our viewers.” Angela states while looking solemnly at the camera.

 

     Brad just looks confused and looks from Angela back to the teleprompter and again tries to speak but is interrupted by Angela again.

 

     “We asked the police department what they had to say about the case. Here is the police chief at the impromptu press conference.”

 

     A clip plays where the police chief steps up to the hastily constructed conference area in front of the police station. He is flanked by several police officers in dress uniforms.

 

     “The case is ongoing and we have no comments at this time. We ask that you respect the privacy of all involved.”

He turns and with the officers behind him walks quickly back into the police station the questions being directed to him by the reporters ignored.

     Shaking her head sadly Angela continues. “This is the police chief of our town. How could he not give at least one statement?”

Again, Brad tries to interject and once more he is interrupted as Angela continues.

 

     “I am sure that with the confession and continued compliance of the alleged would-be murderer justice will be eventually served.”

 

This time Brad successfully interjects. “Um actually Angela…”

 

     “Well, that’s all the time we have here folks for our Daily Crime Report.”

 

There is an awkward pause as Angela waits for Brad to say his part. When nothing happens. Angela finally turns to see Brad staring at her with a look of extreme confusion. Angela raises her eyebrows and jerks her head in the direction of the teleprompter. Blinking Brad swiftly turns his head and looks at the teleprompter.

 

      “Yes… uh… umm…. Yes.” scanning the words quickly he finds his line and begins. “Thanks for joining us for your evening news here at WCBA-17. To find out more information check out our website at www.WCBAnewsforyou.com. Until tomorrow.”

 

With that both Angela and Brad stared directly into the cameras, smile and wave as they say their signature signoff,

 

     “Have an excellent night Tiggertown!”

 

     “And we are off the air. Great job everybody.” Shouts The Producer over the clapping and steadily building of conversations. Walking to the desk at which Brad and Angela are gathering their papers he says in a lower tone that still carries, “Brad I would like to speak to you in my office.”

 

     Brad blinks and looks at The Producer “Yes... uh right away.”

 

     Nodding “Good” The Producer turns and makes his way to his office. Brad quickly gathers the rest of his papers and avoiding eye contact with anyone quickly follows behind him.

 

Once he is in the office The Producer asks him to close the door. Which Brad promptly does and at the insistence of The Producer takes a seat.

 

     The Producer stares at Brad over his steepled hands for a moment during which Brad forces himself not to fidget in his seat. With a sigh The Producer sets his hands on the desk. “What was that?” asks The Producer.

 

     Swallowing Brad asks, “Wh, uh, what do do do you mean?”

 

     “Your performance today was how do I say this without finesse, lacking skill, grotesque beyond imagining. Yes, that works grotesque beyond imagining.”

 

     Brad shakes his head slowly from side to side, his expression mimicking one of a person who has just been unexpectedly slapped. “I I I don’t know what you mean sir.”

 

     “I mean that Angela was reporting on the news and you were sitting there with the same stupid look on your face that you have now. You know when either one of you is reporting you need to keep your professional demeanor. In addition, you lost your place on the teleprompter. If you hadn’t gotten the less than subtle hint from Angela you could have caused us to run over into the Live streaming of the K-pop group BTS. Do you know how their fans are? They are scary. Brad they are scary…” At this The Producer looks off into space with a look of horror on his face before shivering and looking back at Brad.

 

For his part Brad just stared at The Producer.

 

     After a moment of silence, The Producer asks “Well what do you have to say?”

 

     “I was just confused sir.”

 

     “About what?”

 

     “The Daily Crime Report sir. It was just that…”

 

     “Just what?” Before Brad could answer The Producer continued, “spit it out man I don’t have all day!”

 

     “Yes, well... when I read the report earlier it said that... it was just that the confessor…”

 

     “Uh, uh, uh, Alleged.” corrected The Producer with emphasis on alleged.

 

     “Yes, Alleged confessor of the potential murderer was only…”

 

     “Only what...” interrupted The Producer “...only a person whose brain is still in the process of fully developing.”

 

     “Well yes,” said Brad “and…”

 

     “And who confessed to wanting to run over her sibling only minutes after sitting in a bulldozer.

 

     “Well technically sir it was a backhoe loader or digger if you want the everyday term,” corrected Brad with a small smile.

 

     The Producer glared at Brad. “Do I look like I am laughing?!”

 

     Gulping Brad answered “No sir.”

 

     “That’s because I don’t find this situation funny. So, explain to me why you are smiling?” Hissed The Producer.

 

     Terrified Brad stammered out “I I I don’t know sir?”

 

     “Well let me tell you the next time we do a Daily Crime Report act professional or it will be the last time you work here. Got it.”

 

     “Yes sir, I got it.”

 

     “Good! Now leave.”

 

With that Brad quickly got up and exited The Producers office. He stood outside the door for a several minutes and just started off into space. Not noticing his fellow co-workers as they scurried by him. He was still standing there when he finally realized that someone was speaking to him. It was Fred.

 

     “Sorry man I missed that.. What did you say?”

 

     “Braaad... Duuude... I was asking you if you were Okay?” repeated Fred.

 

     Shaking himself Brad gave his perfected fake tv smile. “Yeah Fred I’m fine. Thanks for asking. Um sorry I can’t chat right now I gotta check on something.” He quickly turned and walk/ran for his desk.

 

     “Weird” muttered Fred “all I was doing was saying hi man needs to chill.” said Fred as he quickly took a puff from his cannabis laced vape pen. Holding his breath, he turned back the way he came only to come face to face with The Producer as he stood in his open doorway.

 

     “Fred there wouldn’t happen to be any Mary Jane in that pen?”

     “Of course not Mr. Producer man. Exclaimed Fred “I only allow Acapulco gold in here.”

 

     “Hmph, yes… well carry on.” said The Producer and turning back to his office he closed the door.

 

Fred blinked and grinning to himself let out the smoke he had been holding back in smoke circles as he continued on his way.

 

Brad now at his desk tossed the papers onto the small pile of incoming mail and turned to his desktop computer. Shaking the mouse to wake it up he quickly navigated to the internet and pulled up the newsroom’s website www.WCBAnewsforyou.com. Once there he clicked on the link to the Daily Crime Report section. Just as he thought there was a video clip of the event.

 

A young girl was sitting in a backhoe loader and smiling while making vroom, vroom noises. Her parents were down below smiling and looking up at her.

 

     “Mom! Mom do you see me? Do you see me?”

 

     “Yes, darling I see you? Are you having fun?

 

     “Totally I want to be a bulldozer operator one day!”

 

      “Really darling.. That sounds…” before the mother could continue her attention was grabbed by a young boy pulling on her pants leg.

 

     “Yes Trevor.”

 

     “I wanna drive now.”

 

     “You will get your chance. Let your sister finish her turn.”

 

     “But she’s been up there a long time. It's my turn now!”

 

      “Trevor, what did I tell you about patience.”

 

But Trevor wasn’t listening instead he was now trying to climb up the steps to the cab.

 

His sister looked down at him with an annoyed expression on her face. Scanning the inside of the cab around her she ignored her brother and mother as her mother pulled Trevor away and began the often-repeated reasoning behind patience. Instead, she gripped the controllers and started twisting them this way and that while making louder engine sounds.

 

      “Honey what are you doing?” asked her father

 

      “Trying to run Trevor over.” replied the girl

 

A shocked silence took over the adults in the listening vicinity that quickly descended into laughter started by her father’s loud guffaws.

 

     “Honey Noooo. You can NOT run over Trevor. He is your brother!”

 

Sighing the girl stuck out her lower lip and looked out the window of the cab.

 

There the clip ended.

 

Brad leaned his head slowly side to side and then front to back over and over in an attempt to loosen his tightened neck muscles. Lifting his shoulders, he made a conscious effort to smooth out the scowl on his face before he turned back to the computer to scroll down to the description under the clip. In it he confirmed that the girl was indeed only eight years old. Blinking Brad leaned back in his chair and simply stared off into space. His hands tapping on his chairs arm rest and contemplated just how badly he needed this job.

 

     Think of the mortgage. Think of the mortgage! Think of the mortgage!!!

 

He was startled out of his reverie by the sudden appearance of Fred by his chair. As always, he was taking a puff from his vape pen.

 

     “Man, that's the alleged attempted murderer?” asked Fred

 

     “Yes” answered Brad

 

     “Dude.” said Fred solemnly.

 

     “I know” said Brad

 

     Shaking his head he took another puff of his pen. He asked “Dude?”

 

     “I don’t know either,” said Brad.

 

     “Welp... Dude.”

 

     “I know I know. I am getting ready now.”

 

     “Cool later,” said Fred as he began to walk away.

 

     “Hey Fred!” called Brad.

 

     “Yeah…”

 

     “Thanks for the talk.”

 

     “Keep it groovy man.” With a quickly tossed up peace sign Fred sauntered towards the exit, a trail of smoke circles following in his wake.

 

     With a grunt Brad hauled himself to his feet and made ready to leave for the day. Putting the Daily Crime Report and his talk with The Producer behind him and instead thought of what he was going to tell his niece of her new found infamy.

© Denishea Young
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