As more and more state police and federal agents showed along with the command center, I started sending members of RRT to pack and take their things to the Bombardier.
I wanted to be airborne as soon as possible. Ching Lee was on her way to pack our things in the motel room and I was on my way to one more damn meeting.
I asked Andy to verify that we had left no weapons on the roof – or anywhere else – and to make sure that we had all our Magpul rotary drums.
This meeting was a small one, State Police Commandment Kent Dalton, Frank, Eric, the wimpy triplets, Ching Lee and me. I knew what they wanted even before I walked in the door.
Kent Dalton started speaking, “Ms. Jones, the investigators are going to need all the film from the cameras and access to your people.”
I was just about to respond when my cell phone rang; I recognized the number as being Ben-David.
“Shalom my friend,” and then I switch the conversation over to Arabic.
“I see you are in the news. Are you and your people safe? No injuries?” Ben asked.
“Just a couple of my people received minor injuries. We were very lucky,” I replied.
“Get me pictures of the devices and hopefully we can identify who the explosives trainer was for the group that you were dealing with,” Ben said.
While I was disarming them, Ching Lee was taking pictures with her phone so there were good pictures to send him.
“Yes, I should have good pictures to send to you,” I replied.
“The flight is still on for Monday. Yes, I still have plenty of room on the plane for anything you need me to carry. As long as it carries the diplomatic seal or I know what to do with it when we get there. There are seats if you want to see your friend. We will be there close to a week,” I said and finished with, “Shalom.”
My next words were in Russian directed at Frank, “Before I forget, I’m going to see our mutual friend in Africa next week. If there is anything you want me to hand deliver, get it to me by Sunday evening.”
“I have several things you can carry for me including some contraband that I will have to get you paper for,” Frank replied in Russian.
After the calls I was able to respond the request for video, “The video will be made available to you with conditions attached.”
(1) The video shall remain the exclusive copyrighted property of JGB; there are to be no copies made.
(2) No portion of the videos or stills shall be released to the public, and I emphasize the word NO.
(3) You and any agency – state, local or federal – that deems viewing necessary shall sign a binding letter of agreement to those terms.
“I am having the video collected from cameras 1 through 10, the West entrance cameras 34 through 40, the East entrance and cameras 58 through 68 on the rear parking lot.”
“I have instructed my EIT team to start the collections on the entrance cameras at 10 minutes before the 1st detonation and continue until bodies were removed.”
“On the parking lot cams they were told to start when the SUVs came through the gate and to continue until the fires were under control,” I said.
“It being recorded on DVDs, there will be a lot of them. You can send an officer to my offices on Kent Island to maintain the chain of custody and to sign the agreement tomorrow,” I said.
“Why can’t we just download it from the servers here?” Commandant Dalton asked.
“It has already been backed up to our server farm on the Island and everything on the servers here scrubbed. It eliminates hackers and friends of friends getting any downloads, short clips or posting on YouTube, gory video or any other sites,” I replied.
“As far as access to my people, you are to conduct no interviews without our company legal team present. That includes the employees currently assigned here so you need to make appointments well in advance.”
“The Rapid Response Team that was here will be another issue all together; when they leave here today they are scheduled to depart to various places in Africa and the Middle East. We will have to work out those issues as they arise,” I replied.
“The video should answer all the questions anyhow, so I think the interviews will be a moot point,” I said.
I received a text from Andy, “Everything is loaded and ready. We are at the plane waiting.”
“Gentlemen, tonight is steak and seafood night at the Island restaurant and I don’t like cold steak, so I don’t intend to be late. Have a good evening,” I said as stood to leave.
“I don’t need to be here. Len can handle it from here. Do you have an empty seat on that that plane?” Eric asked.
“Should have, if not, we will make one,” I replied then asked, “Does anyone else want go back?”
Frank and the triplets decided to stay to work with the investigators. I really thought Frank and the triplets were there to shake up the agency personnel after the Randolph fiasco.
There were no local offices for their agencies. The FBI and CIA were sharing the building with the DHS.
The plane was full but we all had seats. The pilots had expressed concern about the extra weight with all the freight we were bringing back.
Minneapolis was close to its maximum range with the minimum fuel reserve requirements and that was not the only problem. This return trip made it apparent.
If we had to go further, we would have split up the team and use two of the G5s – possibly three – as Lorrie was doing with some of her flights now. To use the C130 was over two hundred miles an hour slower than the G5 and out of the question, unless there was heavy freight involved.
With all the new manufacturing coming to the area, Lorrie was now juggling large flights using two or more planes. Many of the defense industries that were located in the south-west were shuttling large groups of engineers, technicians and PR people between the eastern sites and western main offices.
Lorrie needed a bigger plane to carry more passengers further without landing to refuel. After listening to the pilots concerns with loading today, I was ready to agree with her. I needed to be able to send the complete RRT and their equipment and supplies in one plane.
We landed at Morton at 7:30 and the girls were waiting. The six of us with the two boys went straight to the restaurant. Jenny had requested the small meeting room. Jason, Lisa, Jake, Mindy with Mom and Dad filled the room just right.
Vicky had her laptop with her and when I saw it, I knew Robert had given her a condensed DVD of the action from today as I had asked him to do. It was easy to make while he was working on the ones for the State Police. I knew why we were in this room. It was one of the rooms that were used for corporate meetings and laptops could be linked to the flat-screen TV.
The group was anxious to see what had happened today and I had given Vicky instructions that they were not to look at the DVD until I was with them.
The drinks had been served and the orders taken when Vicky connected up the laptop to the big screen and started playing the video, starting with the west entrance.
“Are you sure you want to look at this before supper?” I asked.
“We know it is going to be gory no matter when we look at it. Go ahead, let’s look at it and get it over with. The suspense has gotten the best of us,” Jenny said.
“I will explain what we are looking at as best as I can. I have not seen this either,” I replied.
The owners of the restaurant were working tonight as usual and not long after our orders were taken, they stopped in. The cover was that they had a lot of new people working and just wanted to make sure the service was up to our standards, also to talk to Jason.
Vicky was still trying to get the video stay playing and having trouble getting it linked. Their son helped get the computer linked up.
I explained the sequence on the video. I was surprised how quickly it played out. The two women waited at the entrance road after Diya let them out and then started the slow walk towards that entrance. They were within 25 yards from the security checkpoint when they were challenged.
The two were told to raise their hands repeatedly as a couple of my men slowly made their way towards them. They were telling other visitors to get back and stay away.
The two finally decided to run towards my two men. They had only made a couple of steps when one of them stumbled and activated the device, causing the other to explode as well. My men had run as well and gotten far enough away to be only slightly injured.
It was disturbing to watch the two women disappear in the explosion, with body parts going everywhere.
The next was the east entrance where Ching Lee and I killed the other two. Ching Lee gave the blow by blow of what we had planned, how we pulled it off and why we did it that way. The long lines, how we had taken advantage of them and how they ended up in the middle of the line so quickly forced us to do it that way to try to save lives.
The explanation helped sooth Jenny’s wrath that I saw in her eyes, but I knew more was coming as soon as she got me alone.
The final video was the two SUVs and the cameras mounted on the roof were close enough to my men on the roof that the audio recorded them firing on the SUVs.
I knew the explosion was big; Ching Lee and I had actually felt the concussion from the blast and we were almost 300 yards from it. To see it on film was almost beyond belief.
The two were separated by two rows of double parked cars; that gave them a straight run from the back of the lot to each corner of the field house.
Both SUVs detonated within seconds of one another. The explosions were so large that it lifted dozens of parked cars into the air and piled them on top of other cars.
We watched people that had been walking among the cars disappear in the fire of the explosions and saw others in their cars engulfed in flames and incinerated.
The meal turned into a somber affair as I fully expected it to do.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.