Sometimes I forget how surreal this job can be.
Today I found myself sitting in my car in 80 degree heat waiting for a body to be brought from the water to the body recovery van parked in the driveway of a beach home.
The neighborhood was business as usual except for the lines of Sheriff’s Office vehicles, EMS trucks and the occasional sound of an investigator knocking on a door to see if they saw anything.
I was sitting at my desk typing away when the call came out at 9:13 a.m. Body found floating in the water.
I’ve seen dead bodies before, well parts of dead bodies. I’ve seen the tennis shoe-clad feet of a woman found stabbed to death, and the hand of a man being wheeled away from a deadly fire.
This morning, I saw the lump of a once 30-something-year-old man under a white sheet sitting on the wooden dock of someone’s backyard.
A man was working on his boat this morning when he saw the body floating face down in the water. Minutes later, the body was scooped up about four houses down.
I hate when things like this happen in areas with homes, mostly because it forces me to trespass. My philosophy is simply to go until I’m told no.
So today I walked right to the crime scene but stopped about 20 feet away, too nervous to go any further.
I’m usually fairly brave, but seeing the deputies working and the lump under the sheet not moving, I got very nervous. A deputy came over and curtly answered my questions then left.
Next, I was all about trespassing, specifically at homes without anyone home — No one to tell me no.
After I had another look at the happenings of the crime scene I turned to wait for the body to be loaded and headed to my car. Unfortunately, that was the exact moment the man who owned the home I was at arrived in his driveway.
I smiled, flashed my press pass and power walked away before he could say anything.
Then, for the next hour, I sat in my car waiting for the body to be moved. I waited, and waited, and waited.
An investigator who had seen me early started leaving until he saw me melting in my car. Luckily, he felt sorry for me and told me everything he knew, which granted me a pass back to the office.
What an unpredictable life I lead.