I hope to make this the beginning of a series in which I write different stories about people who witness the downfall of society as the outbreak spreads. This story is about two Louisville police officers, on the day before the outbreak (before the quarantine goes in effect). If people enjoy this read, I will attempt to expand this to other characters, some of which I already have some ideas for.
Because it is pretty hard to find the callsigns for the Louisville Metro Police department, or its predecessor, Louisville Department of Police, I have opted to use some LAPD terms and callsigns. In future bits of the story, this will be more prevalent.
Hope you enjoy.
Outbreak -1 Day
The duo crashed through the wooden fence, the larger man trying to grab onto the teenager as the nails that held the planks up buckled under their combined weight and momentum. The both of them tumbled to the grass, fence planks underneath, on top and around them.
The man rolled onto his stomach and was ready to leap up, when he saw the other, the teenager, already on his feet and trying to get away from him. The man nevertheless pounced, leaping forward and grabbing for the other man’s legs, trying to trip him.
Although he got no solid grip on the legs, he felt the denim in his hands and janked down hard. It had the desired effect, as the teenager suddenly couldn’t move his legs far apart any more with his pants around his ankles, and tumbled forward again, faceplanting into the ground.
This time, the man gave the teenager no time to escape, as he immediately jumped up and onto him again, pinning him down with his own body. The man quickly adjusted, placing his knee onto the teen’s neck, keeping his face buried into the grass as the man caught his breath.
“Was… that… really… smart?” the man said in between breaths, as he reached for his cuff pouch located on the side of his duty belt. He pulled them out, quickly locking them around the teen’s wrists. There was no resistance this time, no attempt to get away. He was beaten.
Police Officer III Ryan Jenkins pushed himself to his feet, brushing off his dark-blue beat uniform. At age 24, Jenkins was a very fit officer, having won the Louisville Department of Police’s athletics tournament last year for the second time in a row. It would absolutely not be smart to try to steal an elderly lady’s purse when Jenkin’s patrol car was rolling by, something that the perp now eating grass had done.
A few minutes later, Jenkins and the teenager returned to the scene where he had pushed the old woman and snatched her purse. The teen’s clothing was decorated with a mixture of grass and soil, as was his face, Jenkins only pulling up his trousers to move him and not taking the time to dust him off.
As they arrived, the boy walking with his head down, trying to avoid eye contact with everyone, Jenkins saw the ambulance parked on the sidewalk. The boy tried to walk towards the squad car, but Jenkins pulled him along towards the ambulance. He’d confront the little bastard with the results of his actions.
They rounded the corner of the vehicle, a paramedic sitting next to the older woman on the edge of the ambulance’s rear compartment. Jenkins’ partner, Police Officer II Timothy Robertson, leaning against the door.
“How’s she doing?” Jenkins asked when the paramedic acknowledged his presence.
“Miss Walker will be fine. She’s a bit shaken and has a bit of a bruising on her knees. Nothing serious” the paramedic said, as he cast another glance at the elderly black woman sitting on the edge of his ambulance with an oxygen mask around her face. She’d been given the full workup. That she had not broken anything was nothing short of a miracle.
Jenkins gave the teen a harsh shake of the shoulder.
“You’re very, very lucky it’s nothing worse kid. You’d be in even more trouble if miss Walker had been more seriously injured. I think you owe her an apology.”
Now for the first time, miss Walker looked up at the officer and his suspect. A sweet old lady she was, a full head of grey afro-style hair. The grandmother that always bakes cookies whenever you visit type.
The teen tried to avoid all possible eye contact, the asphalt they were standing on much more interesting.
Jenkins, who stood almost a full head-and-a-half higher than the teen, looked down upon him.
“I said, I think you owe miss Walker here an apology” he said, a little more forceful.
Although the teen still did not look up, he muttered something nobody could understand. Jenkins shook him up a bit.
“So we can hear it!”
“I am sorry miss Walker…” the teen finally said loud enough that they could hear it.
“Good” Jenkins said, as he motioned towards his partner, “Can you put him in the cruiser?”
“My pleasure” Robertson said, as he pushed himself off the door and took over control of the teen, “Let’s go dipshit.”
While Robertson took the kid off to their cruiser, Jenkins walked up to miss Walker, squatting so he was at the same height as she was sitting.
“I’m very sorry for all this miss Walker. I think this belongs to you” Jenkins said, as he unslung the purse the old lady had been carrying before being robbed. The perp had ditched it after about a block and a half of being pursued by Jenkins, who had been constantly gaining ground.
Miss Walker removed the oxygen mask she had been holding to her face.
“You’re a sweetheart Ryan. Thank you” she said, as she took the purse from him.
“No problem miss Walker, the force will do anything for the lieutenant’s grandmother.”
With a smile, Jenkins departed, the paramedics would take miss Walker home while the two officers would take their suspect to jail.
Jenkins pulled the door shut after he dropped into the passenger seat, buckling his seatbelt. He turned around towards the teenager in the back, still cuffed.
“Running from us was not smart to begin with. But trying to mug the grandmother of our watch lieutenant…”
With that, Jenkins turned around again as Robertson put their squad car in motion.
“Dispatch, 1-Adam-12, returning to the station, one robbery suspect in custody. Victim is okay, paramedics will transport her back to her residence, over” Jenkins said into the microphone attached to the dashboard radio.
“Ten-four 1-Adam-12, Lieutenant Walker will be awaiting your arrival at processing.”
Outbreak -1 Day
“You know what sucks about the department?” Jenkins said, biting on the end of his pen, just as Robertson turned their car onto the West Breckinridge Street, where residential and commercial structures mixed. One building could be a garage, the next a victorian style house, the next one a small office building.
“What sucks about the department?” Robertson said.
“Well, I run after a perp that tried to steal an old lady’s purse, I manage to catch him but accidentally break a fence while doing it. And now, I have to fill in I don’t know how many forms just so the department can hire someone to say “Hey, see that broken fence? Can you fix it?”. I mean, how fair is that? I do my job, I do it well, and I get rewarded with paperwork.”
Robertson laughed in reply.
“Don’t forget to fill out everything they require, hey, you wouldn’t want to do it all again, would you?”
Jenkins punched him on the shoulder, the pen jammed between his teeth as he reached for his coffee and took a sip.
“You know that’s assault of a peace officer, right?” Robertson said as Jenkins put his coffee back in the cup holder.
“If you’re not careful, I’ll show you assault of a peace officer” Jenkins grunted back, before the both of them burst into laughter.
Their front right wheel caught a bump in the road, causing Jenkins to slip with his pen and basically cross through the few lines above, which he had carefully filled in just minutes ago.
“Fuck your driving man!” Jenkins shouted, as he could basically start again on this page of the form. While Robertson was still laughing, Jenkins crumpled the paper into a ball and was getting ready to toss it at Robertson’s head, as movement to the right of their vehicle caught his eye, down the alley.
In the half second that Jenkins could observe, he saw someone laying on the ground, with another person practically sitting on top of him, hitting him.
“Pull over!” Jenkins said, as he immediately unbuckled his seatbelt.
“What?” Robertson said, surprised by the sudden tone of Jenkins from whom he was expecting a ball of paper. He nevertheless hit the brakes, sending the car towards the edge of the road.
Before he could ask for more explanation, Robertson was alone in the car as Jenkins darted back towards the alleyway, leaving his door open. Robertson quickly unbuckled, bailing from the car as well as he ran after his partner.
When Jenkins rounded the corner, he knew he had been right. A little further in the alley, there was man on the ground, desperately trying to crawl away as another person was constantly hitting and… biting him? He could see the man on the ground was injured, even from this distance the red stain on his shirt was visible.
Jenkins stopped momentarily, just a second, allowing his partner to catch up and observe the same.
“You call it in!” Jenkins said, as Jenkins started to run.
“POLICE! HANDS WHERE I CAN SEE THEM!” Jenkins shouted as he pulled his Beretta Model 92 from the holster, aiming at the man who was assaulting the other.
He could hear the call from his radio, Robertson calling in an assault in progress and that they required backup and an ambulance.
The man on the ground cried in agony as the man on his back would not give up, clawing at his legs.
“HELP” the man on the ground cried.
Jenkins, who had been ever closing the distance, called out again.
“POLICE, SHOW ME YOUR HANDS!”
The figure once again did not reply, instead using his teeth to tear off more of the man’s flesh. Only now, could Jenkins see that the man on the ground was bleeding heavily from the massive wound on the back of his thigh. Jenkins thought he could see a bit of the man’s bone, through all the blood and ripped flesh and muscle.
Jenkins did not hesitate, using this thumb to flick the safety off his service weapon and skidding to a halt to aim.
He pulled the trigger twice, hitting the bloodied figure, who was actually eating the flesh he had ripped off from his victim square in the chest with both his rounds. The force of the impact made the figure fall backwards onto the dirt.
Jenkins wasted no time, using his one hand to keep his aim on the obvious madman, as he used his other hand to pull the victim away. He left a trail of blood on the dirt, but the scrambling of the victim, who was still in agony, increased the distance from his attacker.
Jenkins could hear the rushing footsteps of his partner, who came to a halt next to him, his own service pistol drawn, also aiming at the figure Jenkins had just shot. The figure, which was still moving and growling.
To Jenkins surprise, the figure actually tried to scramble up, getting back up on his feet. Although the 9mm rounds from his Beretta were hardly as powerful as some of the revolvers the older officers still used, it should’ve been enough to at least incapacitate the perp. Jenkins aim had been true, two in the chest could put everyone down.
But not this guy. He was back on his feet, and only now did Jenkins notice that his skin was an eery grey, white-ish colour, his face was all covered in blood, undoubtedly that of his victim. And something was off in his eyes, like, there was nobody home. They were glassy, light blue-ish colour.
This guy was definitely under the influence of some kind of narcotics. And not the light stuff, like marijuana, this was some very heavy stuff.
“STAY DOWN!” Robertson called out. The figure turned towards the source of the noise and put his arms out front, trying to quickly close the distance.
Both Robertson and Jenkins didn’t need any more invitation. Narcotics or not, this guy was dangerous.
Both officers fired their pistols, hitting the man repeatedly in the chest. Seeing that their rounds did not put the guy down, they continued firing.
They could see the puffs their rounds made as they connected, they could see his clothing react. But all it did was slow the man down. He did not go down, despite more than twelve 9mm rounds being poured into his chest. It was impossible that they had not hit vital organs, his lungs, his heart, his aorta, by now. Yet he was still closing the distance.
“The fuck!?” Robertson called, as he pulled his trigger again, hitting the figure in the shoulder. And again, the figure did not react other than slow down momentarily and growling, before continuing.
Jenkins put his pistol back into his holster, pulling his baton out and charged the figure, slamming square into him.
With a growl, the figure went to the ground, landing on his back. He nevertheless tried again to get up, clawing at Jenkins who was now closeby, snapping his jaws at him.
Jenkins used his boot to kick him in the chest. He could hear the crunch of bone shattering, as he broke the man’s ribs.
Jenkins didn’t care, from his point of view this qualified as justifiable use of force. If two officers firing their entire magazines in your chest does not put you down, everything is justifiable. Especially not when you were moments ago eating another human being alive.
The man however did not care that his ribcage was shattered, still trying to get to Jenkins.
“The fuck is this guy on?!” Robertson called, as he just put a fresh magazine into his pistol.
Jenkins kicked the man again, this time the force rolling him onto his stomach. Jenkins saw his chance.
“Get his left arm!” Jenkins called to Robertson, as Jenkins placed his knee in between the man’s shoulder blades. This prevented the man from rotating his arms very much, as his shoulder blades would connect with Jenkins’ knee.
Robertson was quick to holster his pistol and take out his cuffs, approaching the figure from the side. He was still trying to wrestle free from Jenkins, still trying to get to claw and bite at him.
With some effort, Robertson got his cuff around the man’s left wrist, Jenkins twisting the right one towards him, and soon after the man was cuffed.
“Get the first aid kit!” Jenkins said, as he got off the man and rushing over towards the victim.
Robertson ran off towards their cruiser, which was parked around the corner, meanwhile reaching for his radio to call another ambulance immediately.
In the distance, they could already hear approaching sirens, their backup. The whole scene here had transpired in under a minute and a half. Yet it felt like an eternity.
Jenkins reached the victim, seeing that he had passed out due to the pain. He was still bleeding from the massive wound on his thigh, Jenkins now confirming that what he had seen was indeed bone.
His partner was already on the way back, carrying the first aid kit around his shoulder.
“Get me the tourniquet!” Jenkins called at him. Nothing in their kit could cover a wound this size properly, so their best bet was to use the tourniquet to at least slow the bleeding.
The sirens sounded real close now. Jenkins looked up just after attaching the tourniquet tightly and saw another patrol car turn around the other corner of the alleyway, racing at them full speed.
Not long after that, an ambulance turned around the other corner. Stopping not too far from the victim and at Jenkins’ directions, the paramedics immediately went to work.
Meanwhile, the other patrol car stopped. Two officers stepped out, looking over at the still wrestling man on the ground in cuffs. He had turned towards their patrol car, trying to crawl his way towards them but was not making much progress in the loose dirt. Robertson had pulled his pistol again and was still aiming at the man, though he was no threat at the moment.
“The hell is wrong with this guy?” one of the recently arrived officers asked as the man in cuffs kept making weird noises and kept snapping his jaw.
Jenkins, who had given way for the paramedics to do their job, walked through the many shell casings left on the ground.
“Not a clue. That guy should be dead. We went through two entire clips…”
“Say what now?” the other new officer asked.
The second ambulance thundered into the alleyway from the same direction the patrol car had come from, stopping next to it.
“What’s the deal?” one of the disembarking paramedics asked. The other ambulance meanwhile departed with their assault victim in the back, still unconscious, making their way to the University of Louisville Hospital.
“Definitely under the influence of some kind of narcotics. And uhh...Gunshot wounds. About twenty of them.”
“This is not a joking matter” the paramedic angrily said as he and his partner grabbed their gear and jogged towards the cuffed man.
“It is not a joke, you can count the goddamn casings” Robertson said, still not lowering his weapon off the struggling man.
The paramedics reached the man, which immediately tried to get one of their ankles in between his jaw.
“Whoah” the second paramedic said as he narrowly avoided the bite, “He’s a biter.”
“He was eating the guy the second ambulance just took away. Tore his flesh right out” Jenkins said, “The blood is not his.”
The leading paramedic reached for the man’s neck, trying to get a pulse despite repeated attempts to bite.
“Fuck, no pulse. Flip him… Get these cuffs off him!”
The other paramedic meanwhile flipped the man around onto his back, once again getting nearly bit in the process.
“Get these cuffs off!” the lead paramedic repeated. The two officers that arrived later showed hesitant, both Police Officer II’s, which meant Jenkins was the ranking officer until the patrol sergeant arrived.
“We are not taking these cuffs off” Jenkins stated.
The lead paramedic was momentarily taken off guard by the rebuttal, but once again repeated himself.
“Get these cuffs off now!”
Jenkins shook his head, looking over at Robertson, who had only lowered his gun so he could never accidentally fire at either paramedic, but kept his pistol at the ready.
“He is still combative. We are not taking his cuffs off. I saw this guy not go down after more than twenty rounds, I am not going to give him another chance to get up.”
The lead paramedic was getting ready to argue, argue the, in his opinion irrational decision, by this police officer who had tried to kill this man and was now ensuring he did not get proper care, when his own partner intervened.
“Jacob… this guy should be dead” the other paramedic said, as he had had a chance to examine the many bullet wounds on the cuffed guy’s chest, after ripping apart his shirt. The holes were there, a lot of them. However, there was no blood flowing out of it. The holes were dark, filled with a black liquid which did not resemble blood both paramedics were used to. But the man did not bleed, the holes were just filled by the liquid. There was no pulsing, no flowing. But it was not clotting either.
About eight of the holes were centered right on where the man’s heart should be. It’s obvious Robertson and Jenkins had shot to kill. But the man was still moving, despite all the trauma his body endured.
“Wha…” the lead paramedic said as he came to the same conclusion as his partner. The man who was struggling to break free of his chains, to bite any one person around them, should’ve been dead. The trajectory the bullets would’ve taken through his body would’ve wrecked almost every major organ a human has. Yet this one was still kicking, literally.
“Get the gurney, we’ll take him to Uni hospital” the lead paramedic said to his partner, before turning towards Jenkins, “We’ll need escort.”
“You got it” Jenkins replied, “You two, secure the scene, tell whoever shows up that we’re at the University Hospital.”
Both officers acknowledged his order.
Two minutes later, Jenkins and Robertson darted their patrol car through traffic, lights and sirens blazing, followed closely by the ambulance who was likewise blasting its sirens.
The drive from the scene to the hospital would’ve normally taken about nine minutes under normal traffic conditions. They did it in six.
Jenkins and Robertson rushed in together with the two paramedics, who immediately reported on the status of their patient.
“Alright, get him to OR one” the doctor said as he kept pace alongside the stretcher, “Switch here.”
They pulled the stretcher to a stop next to a hospital one, a more luxurious version of the one carried in ambulances.
Together, the doctor, paramedics and officers lifted the backboard the man in cuffs was tied to, and put him on the hospital stretcher. Unfortunately for the doctor, he did not understand the severity of his patient’s situation yet, or rather his aggressiveness.
“Fuck!” the doctor called out, as he jumped back from the stretcher. As per reflex, Jenkins and Robertson both pulled their guns, something which went against at least eight departmental regulations regarding firearms in hospitals.
“No!”, the doctor called when he saw both officers draw, “He tried to bite my thumb off, it’ll be okay, let’s get him moving!”
The doctor used his coat to wipe away some of the blood flowing out of the small wound on his thumb, as some hospital staff rushed the man off, through the double doors towards the Operating Room.
Ten minutes later, Jenkins and Robertson were relieved by another unit.
“What a fucked up day this was…” Robertson said as they approached their squad car.
“I don’t know what the hell that guy was on, but it was some heavy stuff, that’s for sure” Jenkins replied, as he pulled open his door and sat down, “Let’s hope we don’t see that again.”
“Let’s hope so brother. Let’s hope so.”