Krista wasn’t sure what exactly she had expected. She had been arrested and hauled into the police precinct for questioning on the grounds of robbery. She could plead the fifth, opting not to talk at all, but the evidence was stacked against her, and she wasn’t sure what keeping silent would do.
She had been wearing the pearl necklace that had been stolen, after all.
The cop that had volunteered or been forced to interrogate her had offered her a cup of coffee, which she politely declined, and was standing in front of her. He was either new at this questioning bit or just tired of the case already. Either way, he was looking more at the file on her than at her, and she swung her leg while gazing around the windowless, gray room. She curiously wondered how many others were watching her from the two-way mirror on the opposite wall, and she was sorely tempted to wave or make faces at whoever was watching the show.
“Ms. Cooper,” the cop eventually said, his tone perplexed as he read one last sentence on her file before finally looking up at her. She blinked, waiting for him to speak. “You were brought in on robbery charges, not just for the pearls, but for all of the other jewelry that had been stolen from various museums and stores in the past six months.”
Krista nodded, prompting the officer to continue.
“Why slack off?” was his surprising question. She raised a thin eyebrow, and he elaborated. “All of these jobs were near perfect crimes. No fingerprints, no alarms tripped, no messes, just a few pretty jewels pilfered here and there. Suddenly you’re caught wearing the very necklace that was stolen last week while sloppily trying to swipe an emerald from a showcase. You weren’t very discreet with the broken window and clear footprints in the mud.”
“Maybe I was tired,” Krista said, shrugging.
The officer’s face was impassive. “Or maybe you wanted to be caught. Why was that?”
She scoffed. “No person in my line of business wants to be caught, officer. Maybe your security guard was more adequate than usual.”
“He was a terrified rookie that almost shot himself while trying to radio for back-up,” was the dry response. The officer leaned forward on the table. “Why did you want to be caught?”
She leaned back in her chair and, after a few moments, he did the same.
“Was your employer asking for a bit too much this time around?” the cop asked. Her gaze narrowed and she crossed her arms. He persisted. “Your apartment was searched, and most of the pricier pieces of jewelry were gone. I’m wagering that you’ve sold those jewels to either the highest bidder or to someone who had paid you to swipe them in the first place. Suddenly you’re in over your head, and what better place to hide out from this demanding employer than in jail?”
“Do you have proof, officer?” Krista asked, her voice silky. “It’s a pretty imaginative scenario you’re proposing.”
He gave her a quirked smile. “Just tell me the truth.” She turned her head away, and his chair scraped aggravatingly against the stone floor. “We’ll figure it out. If you’re not able to work, perhaps your employer may find others to do his dirty jobs. In the meantime, you’ll get what you want, a nice, comfy cell until your court date. Thank you for your time, Ms. Cooper.”
She stayed sitting as he slammed the door to the interrogation room behind him.