Daniel Knight: Ace Attorney
Case 1: Turnabout Hit and Run It was a long walk to the parking lot that night, but it was beautiful outside, so he didn't mind. Work had been hard lately, one of his clients had just lost a lot of money and his ass was on the line. It wasn't his fault though, someone had gotten into the account, so we had to promptly shut it down. Whoever it was knew what he was doing, as there was no trace of where the money went.He reached the intersection of July Avenue and 1st Street when he heard the sound of an engine. It was one of them european designs, high gear. He was a bit of a car nut. The car sounded close so he turned and looked, but was blinded by high beams. By the time he knew what was happening, he was hit. He flew through the air, and landed on the side of the road, broken and dying. He knew that car, he knew who had done it, but no one would ever hear it from him. Part One
August 17, 8:00 AM; Knight & Knight Law Firm
Dan walked through the door into his office. It was a quaint little corner office in the Knight & Knight Law Firm. No, he wasn't partner, it was his parents that established the firm. His father died a couple years back, and his mother promptly defended the accused and won the trial, finding the real culprit and proving he was the one who did it. But enough of the history lesson. Inside the office was Dan's aide, May Flowers. She's a nice woman, a bit younger than Dan and currently an intern, which was kinda funny because Dan had just gotten out of law school himself.
'Good morning Danny,' May said, looking over a dossier of notes, 'We have a case'. Dan put his green suit jacket down on his chair. He grabbed the folder that May had exteneded to him, and began looking through the court record. Enclosed were a few news paper clippings concerning the case. 'The case was a hit and run. The victim was 42-year-old Walter Pennypincher, an accountant. The car, an Orryolus Stallion, was identified by the sole witness, a young professor by the name of Wesley Stickler. Our client is Alfred Bigbucks, a local billionaire' May informed.
'How come Bigbucks was the only person identified as a suspect? Aren't there any other cars like his in the city, what about the country?' Dan asked.
'The car is quite expensive, over one million euros to buy. Combine that with the exchange rate...' May said, 'and there aren't exactly any other billionaires in the city, I scanned the tabloids earlier this morning while getting my coffee and none are visiting.'
'Are there any others in the country?' Dan enjoyed the fact that is aide was so prompt with details.
'One or two, it's pretty popular among car collectors,' May informed, 'but as I said before, none are supposed to be in the city, and if any of the owners had been in the city chances are they would have taken their private jets as opposed to driving hundreds of miles.'
'I guess you're right, what's the client's story?'
'Just that he left the house for a bit, around the time of the murder to go and grab something from the store, of course in the vehicle' May explained.
'A set-up perhaps?' Dan asked.
'It's a possibility, the damage does look kind of fake, but we can't prove it, it's the witness' word against our client's for now' May sighed.
Dan flipped to the photos section of the court record and checked the vehicle. A fairly large dent was directly on the right side of the vehicle, dried blood could be seen on and around the dent. He agreed with May, the damage was quite fake looking - and the blood had yet to be tested – so it could very well be a set-up.
Or it could have been many other things, but hey, this seemed the most logical for the current situation.
'Well guess these photos are proof enough of the crime for now, but we need more testimony' May headed for the coat rack by the door.
'Guess we're off to the Detention Center then,' Dan sighed 'And I had just gotten comfortable...' August 17, 8:40 AM; Detention Center
'Yeah, we're here to speak with our client, Alfred Bigbucks' Dan asked the guard.
'Alright, wait here' the guard promptly left the room.
Dan had only been to the Detention Center a couple times for other cases. For some reason, despite the people that were here, it always seemed safe to him.
'Hey May, I've been meaning to ask... How did we get the case?' Dan knew that something was up, a big billionaire asking for a small time defense attorney like him.
'It wasn't his choice, we were asked by the city to defend Mr. Bigbucks since no one else would take the case' May explained.
'But I wasn't asked to take the case, and you weren't either, so...'
'It was your mother who chose the case for us' May interrupted. Strange
, Danny thought, why would mom pick a case for us that seemed almost impossible.
The door opened on the other side of the glass divider of the room. In walked a scared man in a suit, fancy pens adorned his pocket protector. A gold chain went from his belt to his pocket, probably a pocket watch. After seeing Dan and May on the other side of the glass, his demeanor improved slightly, a weak smile could be seen on his face.
'So you must be Mr. Bigbucks, I'm your defense attorney, Daniel Knight' Dan said to the scared man.
'Thank you for coming' Bigbucks said meekly.
'Y'know for a billionaire, he's pretty soft spoken and quiet' May whispered to Dan. Dan agreed, this man sure didn't seem like the normal billionaire stereotype of being pompous and arrogant.
'What did you say!? I know you said something but I couldn't hear it! Tell me! Don't make fun of me...' Bigbucks nearly burst into tears from May's unheard comment. Wonderful
, Dan thought.
'I was wondering if you could tell us a bit more about what you did last night around 10:00 PM?' Dan reached into the court record and grabbed a paper, 'We already know that you went to the store using the murder weapon to get there.'
'Yes, I went to the store at 9:45, picked up a few things and got home around 10:10' Bigbucks explained, seeming to become a bit more confident.
'What things did you pick up from the store?'
'A bag of chips and a slurpee,' Bigbucks reached into his pocket, 'I kept the receipt, I'm kinda careful about my money'. Dan checked the recepit, on it was the total price and the time of the sale. The time he checked out was 9:57 PM, estimated time of death was 10:00 PM according to the autopsy, give or take 5 minutes. So it could be entirely possible that he killed him.
'What was the location of the store?'
'On 1st Street, near the... scene of the crime...'
'He was near the location of the murder, that's not good' May spoke up.
'Not at all,' Dan responded, 'May, could you pass me the dossier, let's try and piece this together with what we know'. Okay... Bigbucks left for the store at 9:45 PM and reached there around 9:52 PM and checked out at 9:57 PM. The store is 3 minutes down the street from the scene of the crime, in the direction opposite the way Bigbucks would go to get back to his mansion. Pennypincher was killed between 9:55 and 10:05 PM. Driving down the street, killing Pennypincher and driving back up to his house would take 13 minutes, which would mean the time he got home would be correct.
'Damn' Dan spoke after a short period of thinking, 'all the time adds up.' May quickly snatched up the paper that Dan had been scribbling on.
'Yup, that all makes sense... But still there's a lot we haven't looked in to, we shouldn't give up yet'.
'I never said we were going to give up, just that everything adds up. You shouldn't be so quick to jump to conclusions' Dan joked, 'Anyways, the trial begins tomorrow so we'll go dig up some evidence and see what we can do. We'll see you at the trial tomorrow unless something comes up'
'Thank you, thank you! I know you'll win the trial!' Bigbucks nearly burst into tears. Dan could see the guard put his face in his palm, though he couldn't tell if it was in pity, shame or hilarity. The guard grabbed Bigbucks and led him away, still sobbing to himself.
'Alright, time to go. Let's head to the scene of the crime first, see if there's anything we can find.' August 17, 9:15 AM; Scene of the Crime
Dan never liked the crime scenes, always so rushed, there was no time to think. It's hard to piece things together in this kind of environment. May seemed to like it though, maybe she should have been born into the Knight family and Dan into the Flowers family.
As he got out of the car he noticed the taped outline of where the body was only a few hours ago, it was facing north. Some dried blood could be seen smeared across the ground and where the body would have been. If Pennypincher had been hit, he most likely would have been hit while crossing 1st street. The car would've needed to be moving really fast in order to knock him that far.
As he and May approached, a studious looking woman moved away from the taped outline holding a bag that read 'Snackoos'. The infamous Ema Skye.
'The son of the great Chelsea Knight, so you're the attorney on this case'. Ema said, patting Dan on the shoulder.
'I am, a pleasure to meet you, I'm Daniel' Dan raised his hand to shake Ema's, but she pushed it away and ran to May.
'Ohmigosh May! Is that you?' Ema screamed in joy, opening her arms in a hug.
'Oh hi Ema! I haven't seen you in so long' May nearly fell over from Ema jumping at her.
'What are you doing here? Are you working?' Ema backed up and looking May up and down .
'I'm a legal aide intern working with Danny' May responded with a bit of a grin, 'How goes the forensics business?'
'Pretty good, though it's a shame I didn't get transferred to a larger city... Oh well, guess I'm stuck here until my natural talent finally gets realized...'
Danny finally butt in. 'So anything special about the crime scene?'
'Oh right... The crime scene. Nothing really special, the accountant got hit while crossing 1st Street walking towards the parking lot. Pretty simple stuff' Ema seemed disheartened, 'I was hoping for something a bit more difficult'.
'Well we'll still do some searching, maybe we can find out something to help defend our client'.
'Good luck to you then' Ema walked back over to the other researchers, still munching away.
'Okay let's start searching for evidence...' Dan didn't really know where to begin. A blank look crept across his face.
'Hey what's this over here' May started to move towards some dried mud on the north side of June avenue.
'It's mud, but...' Dan looked closer, 'Tire tracks. Take a photo please May'.
The first piece of evidence, at least he hoped.
'Hmmm, we'll have to get these analyzed later. In the meantime let's keep searching'
Up and down the street they searched, looking at the scene from different angles. They even went to the second floor of the building, a university, where the sole witness saw the crime. He would've seen the whole thing. After scoping out the scene from the vantage point of the, they left the building. Walking down the sidewalk, Dan heard a crunch at his feet. He thought nothing of it, but May stopped and looked down.
'Danny, you should watch where you're stepping, you crushed this... bracelet...' May seemed transfixed on the beautiful jewels that adorned the slightly broken bracelet.
'Hey that might be a valuable piece of evidence, give it here!' Dan snatched it away and looked it over.
'Seems expensive...' May continued looking at the bracelet with womanly lust.
'Yeah... Well I think we're done here. I mean even Ema and her team have already left, probably not much else we can find here'
'You're probably right, let's head to the mansion and check out the murder weapon'. August 17, 11:00 AM; Bigbucks Mansion
Dan got out of his car with May following close behind him. They parked just outside the compound, along a face that ran the exterior of the lot, keeping many people out. The gate was guarded by police officers, who let Danny and may pass when he flashed his attorney's badge. There were lots of reporters standing outside the compound, hoping to speak with police representatives or people working on the trial like Dan. He just ignored them and kept walking.
Inside the large garage was the vehicle. On the right side of the car was a moderately sized dent and what looked to be dried blood on the hood and windshield of the vehicle. A member of Ema's forensics team was there with a computer and was analyzing the mathematics involved the crash. There was a strange looking man behind him, wearing a knight's mantle and helmet, and he had a sword hanging on his belt.
'That's rather interesting, I believe I have this case in the bag' said the man in the helmet.
As Dan and May got closer to the car, the knight noticed them.
'Hmmm, you're dressed awfully formal for a tabloid reporter. How'd you get past the police at the gate?' he asked with a suspicious look on his face.
'Actually, I'm the attorney working for Mr. Bigbucks on the case' Dan took out his attorney's badge 'I'm Daniel Knight'.
'I see. I'm Alexander Noble, I'm the prosecutor in the Bigbucks murder trial' he extended a gauntleted hand to Dan.
'Is it alright if we do some evidence gathering since we're here?'
'Of course, feel free to ask the forensics team any questions you may have regarding the scientific details of the case' Noble moved out of the way and extended his hand toward the vehicle, 'but for now I must bid you adieu. I have other pressing matters involving the case to deal with'. With that, he left.
'Man, what a... weird guy...' Dan said.
'He's interesting I'll give you that' May agreed.
'Hey May, take a picture of the tire treads and see if we can match them up with the ones we found in the mud'
'Good idea, I'll take a picture of the front of the car as well' After giving May her job, Dan moved over to the scientist.
'Can you tell me any details regarding murder?' Dan asked.
'Well, Pennypincher was hit while crossing 1st Street, flew through the air and landed on the south side of June street. In order to knock him that far, the vehicle would've needed to be travelling at around 43.5 mph or 70 km/h...' The scientist continued to ramble on about forces and angles. Dan nodded, not really knowing what was being said. After finishing her photo taking, May joined Danny by the vehicle.
'I think we have everything that we can get here' May said.
'Yeah' Dan said to May, 'we'll be heading out now, thanks for your help'.
'It was a request from Ms. Skye that we help out the defense in any way'.
'I guess you're good for something May' Dan joked. May smacked him on the side of the head. As they left the garage, they noticed a commotion at the gate, a young man burst forth through the crowd. The man looked very posh and elegant, kind of like a prince. As he neared Dan and May, he stopped.
'You're the attorney working on the trial right?' he asked in a voice that seemed to old for him.
'Hi, I'm Daniel Kni-'
'My father killed that man, there's no doubt about it. You should just give up' the man interrupted.
'But your father seemed so meek and helpless when we met him earlier' May spoke up, a frown forming on her face.
'Oh please, that was just an act to win sympathy, he's an evil man...' with that the man walked away, towards the house.
'Enlighten me, who was that?' Dan asked, a bit put off by the gruff young man.
'That would be Alfred Bigbucks' biological son, Wilfred Bigbucks' May said, 'he's very different from his father'.
'Yeah, he let being rich get to his head. Is there anything else you know about him?'
'He's a computer whiz, and also the same age as Alfred's wife'
'I see...' Dan looked back at Wilfred walking towards the house and grimaced, 'well then, how about we go for lunch, I'm hungry'.
'Sounds like a good idea to me, let's go' May perked up at the mention of lunch. They walked off towards their car, pushing away reporters trying to find out the story. August 17, 1:05 PM; Knight & Knight Law Firm
Dan walked through the door of law firm. At the desk in the main lobby was the receptionist. She greeted Dan and May as they walked in. They made there way to the office and May placed the court record on Dan's desk. Dan sat down and flipped through the enclosed files, clippings and pictures. After spending a couple minutes looking through everything, he finally spoke up.
'Damn, I can't find a hole that could even slightly prove that Bigbucks is innocent' Dan dropped his head to his desk in defeat.
'Jeez Danny, giving up before the trial has even started...' May crossed her arms at her desk.
'Well you've looked through everything too, you know as well as I do that so far there are no holes' Dan said in a conceding tone.
'Y'know, we should check out his son, maybe he's got some information on the murder. Y'know, like a possible suspect and motive' May said, with a bit of hope.
'Might be a good idea, he's probably at the mansion, let's check it out' Dan also perked up at the thought of finding a suspect. August 17, 2:00 PM; Bigbucks Mansion
Dan and May noticed there were still some tabloid and television reporters sitting out front of the gate. Many of them recognized Dan and May from earlier, and tried to get them to reveal some sort of information involving the case or their defendant. Dan was an imposing figure most of the time, and he adeptly pushed them out of the way. May clung to Dan's suit jacket, he kind of enjoyed the feeling. They soon made it past the gate and made their way to the front door. They rang the bell, and Wilfred came to the door.
'Is there something I can help you with' Wilfred said in a pleasing voice.
'Hi, I'm Daniel Knight and this is my assistant May Flowers and I'm representing your father in tomorrow's case' Dan said, extending his hand. Wilfred eyed the hand curiously, then shook the hand.
'I'm Wilfred, I can't say that much, but I'll do what I can' he smirked a strange smirk, 'please follow me'. They walked through the mansion up to what seemed to be Wilfred's room. He opened the door and they all walked into a big two floored room. The bottom flloor had a bunch of computers, some new, some old. It also had a myriad of video game systems and a few big televisions. In the corner was what seemed to be an office. 'Please sit down, I'm going to go get some coffee, would you like some?'
'No thank you' Dan replied.
'I'll take one' May said, 'Two sugars, two creams'.
'Got it' he smiled a sincere smile and walked out of the room.
Dan looked around the room some more. 'Wow, this is extravagant'
'No kidding, the bottom floor is bigger than my apartment' May marvelled. Mine too
, Dan thought to himself, grimacing. He looked at the desk, there were papers strewn about. One paper seemed out of place to him, a receipt for a car rental. He picked it up and started analyzing it, there wasn't much out of place, except for the price, half a million dollars! Dan quickly grabbed the receipt and put it in his pocket as he heard the door behind him open.
'Sorry about that, here you go Ms. Flowers... It is Miss right?' He asked with his sincerest smile.
'Yes... Yes it is' May blushed slightly. Dan also turned red, embarassed for her.
'So yes, if you could tell us about what happened that night?' Dan firmed up.
'Well, my father left the house around 9:45 PM and came back around 10:05 PM, he seemed rather distraught when he got home, but I payed it no mind because he's always nervous' there was slight disdain in Wilfred's voice.
'Did anything else happen?' Dan asked.
'Nothing that I can say, I apologize'
May finally butt it, 'Your father recently lost a lot of money didn't he?'
'Ah, a tabloid reader, yes it's true, he did lose a lot money and it was that accountant's fault'
'You mean the victim's?' Dan asked.
'Yes, he authorized a large money transfer to an unknown account' Wilfred said, growing more serious.
'What did your father do when he found out'
'He was not happy, he went down there and gave that accountant a piece of his mind, but that's all I know about that' he lifted his hands and shook his head.
'You don't discuss these things?'
'Not really, we keep our lives pretty seperate'
'I see' Dan rubbed his chin, 'well I think that's all the questions we have, right May?' She nodded. 'We'll be going now, thank you for your help'
'Any time Mr. Knight' he turned to May and smiled 'Good by Ms. Flowers' May blushed a bit then looked away.
'Jeez what the hell was that?' Dan said, annoyed.
'What do you mean?' May asked, eyeing him suspiciously with a grin.
'He was hitting on you the whole time!' Dan finally blurted out, rather loudly.
'Are you jealous?' she said the last word rather mischieveously.
'No, it's just weird seeing your friend and co-worker being hit on by someone, I'm sure you'd feel the same way if some beautiful woman were to hit on me'
May thought for a moment, 'You're probably right'.
As they neared the door, a woman appeared. She was slender and young, wavy black hair cascaded from her head onto her shoulders. She wore a black strapless dress. A stunning woman that would make any man instantly fall into the throughs of lust.
'You must be Mr. Knight' she said, her voice sounded rather sultry.
'I am, and you are?'
'Janice Goldsnub, ex-wife of Alfred Bigbucks'.
'Ex-wife?' Dan and May asked simultaneously.
'Yes, ex-wife, I can't stay married to a man who commited murder!'
'Are you absolutely sure he did it?' Dan questioned.
'Yes I'm sure, he came home last night and he seemed scared, more than usual and he rushed to the basement with pepsi can and bag of chips in hand and didn't come back up all night. It was rather strange to see his bed vancant in the morning'
'Did you ask him what was wrong?'
'I tried but he said everything was fine, all nervous'
'I see...' Dan felt hopeless, 'thank you for your time'. Dan started to walk away. As he reached for the door, Ms. Goldsnub siddled up behind Dan. She grabbed his shoulder, moved in close and whispered in his ear.
'You should stop trying, you're going to lose' her voice had a sexy rasp. Dan shivered as if a cold wind had just blown by. He turned around to look but she was already walking away. Dan walked out to a blushing May.
'Now I know how you feel' May said, looking down. They both began walking away towards Dan's car.
'Well, that was interesting' Dan said.
'No kidding, and it seems like we haven't found anything that could help the case' May seemed rather sad about this development.
'I'm not so sure about that, something didn't sit right with me in there, and it wasn't just Wilfred hitting on you and the awkward advances of that woman' Dan was deep in thought as they walked. 'Well I think we're done here, I'll drop you off at the office and then I'll go home'
'Okay then, I'll try and do some digging on the internet or in some old tabloids tonight. Maybe that'll help' May perked up.
'Thanks for the help May, what would I do without you' Dan smiled.
'You'd be perfectly lost, that's for sure' she smiled rather widely. To be continued...