Don’t try to figure out fiction writers. We are a mix
bag of creativity, fantasy, and weirdness. To prove my point, below is my interview with a fictional character that has appeared in two of my novels: HER LYING EYES and MELTDOWN (to be released within two weeks). Indulge me this little fantasy, okay?
SMW: I am here with Detective Chris Lagoni of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department where he is beginning his seventh year with the Criminal Investigation Division. Welcome, detective.
LAGONI: Thanks, Susan. Please call me Chris.
SMW: Fine, Chris. You were involved in the investigation of the active shooter on July Fourth at Montgomery Park in Charlotte that left twenty civilians and one police officer dead. Is this the biggest case of your career?
LAGONI: Yes. Anytime you have an active shooter with multiple casualties it draws a lot of attention and an intensive investigation involving local, state, and federal law enforcement. I want to point out that I was only working on one aspect of the investigation. My squad handled the case of a second shooter that killed a man in a different area of the park. Our focus was on that shooting.
SMW: It’s my understanding that you disagreed with the FBI on the connection between the two shooters. Is that correct?
LAGONI: That’s right. Based on what I saw at the crime scene, I considered them separate homicides, completely unrelated.
SMW: But they happened simultaneously! Both men were former military and were at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan at the same time. Isn’t it reasonable to believe they met overseas and plotted the attack together? They seemed to be two terrorists, or part of a terrorist cell, who wanted to do as much damage as possible.
LAGONI: Susan, I don’t know any other way to explain it other than to say I went with my gut. It didn’t feel right. I mean, the sniper used a Remington 700 rifle and the other shooter had a .38 handgun. It didn’t make sense that one shoots from a church bell tower at a range of 300 yards and the other man kills up close and personal.
SMW: Since I have gotten to know you, I have noticed that you are a bit of a maverick. You don’t always play by the same rules as other officers. I know for a fact that it has gotten you in trouble. For instance, you have butted heads with the FBI. Special Agent Hank Calhoun wanted to remove you from the investigation. Would you like to comment?
LAGONI: (smiling) The important thing to remember here is that I get results. Just ask my sergeant. He’ll tell you.
SMW: Okay, let’s move along. Sources have told me that you turned your focus on a woman named Megan Moore. It was reported that she has a connection with the second shooter, a man named Sam Briggs. Is that correct?
LAGONI: Yes, that’s right. My partner and I caught up with her at the airport where she was waiting for Briggs to pick her up right after the shooting. We found his cell phone that led us to her. We hoped she would lead us to Briggs.
SMW: Did she?
LAGONI: I’m sorry, Susan, this is an ongoing investigation, and I’m not at liberty to discuss details.
SMW: Are you trying to protect her? Isn’t it true that you developed a personal interest in Miss Moore?
LAGONI: Like I said, I’m not at liberty to discuss aspects of this case.
SMW: You can with me, Chris. After all, I wrote the book! You can tell me anything.
LAGONI: Nice try, Susan, but I think we’re done here. Besides I just got a text from my partner, Nick Pulaski. He tells me the captain wants to see me in his office immediately. I’m afraid we’ll have to end this now.
SMW: Okay, I won’t keep you then. It’s been a joy to write about you. Thanks for your time.