Lies, Secrets and Murder. My Journey to Find the Truth.
by Victoria M. Patton
The following is an introduction to Victoria M. Patton’s latest project. The account is non-fiction. Ms. Patton is currently searching for any information surrounding her father’s death and writing about her journey in the process.
My mother died last November. She took with her a lot of secrets. Unfortunately, I am left with bits and pieces of my life and they aren’t all the pieces of the puzzle. Now I could be, should be, content with the stories I have and the memories that fill my head. But alas it is the selfish bitch within that is not content or satisfied.
I am mad that my mother took these secrets to the grave with her. I am mad that even in my forties she didn’t think I could handle knowing the facts surrounding my father’s death. So, here I sit writing about a search I can’t even get started. Not for lack of trying, but I can’t find any records to substantiate my brother’s story.
Understand, that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. After all, he sat through the trial and heard all the testimony, so he has first-hand knowledge.
A little background, my father came out of the 101st Airborne and went into acting. He was in the 1970 movie “The Losers”, with Adam Roarke, Bernie Hamilton and William Smith. He acted under the name of Houston Savage. (His given name was Giovanni De Blasio.) He was making a name for himself in the acting world.
According to my brother Patrick, sometime shortly after the filming of the movie, my father became involved with a mob-like group of people. He and several others colluded with a president of a very wealthy business. (My brother remembers it as some kind of department store in which the president of the company kept extremely valuable items in the safe of his office. All of this was revealed in the trial. Which the prosecutors wanted my mother and all us kids to attend every day.)
According to testimony, my father, the men he was involved with, and the president of the company, had planned to steal the contents of the safe. Then the president was going to report the theft and claim the insurance money. It was a substantial amount of money. I’m not sure exactly on the particulars, but the amount and fraud landed the case in Federal court.
The security guard on duty that night was in on the theft. But at the last minute, he backed out. His replacement had no idea of the arranged crime that was going to happen. The president of the company and my father were in the president’s office having a drink before my father was supposed to rough him up a bit and the take the contents of the safe.
The replacement guard, making his nightly rounds, saw a light under the door. He poked his head into the office. The president became nervous and eyed my father’s gun sitting on the desk. He freaked out at the interruption, pointing to my dad saying, “He’s robbing me, he has a gun.”
My father was arrested. He wasn’t about to go to jail for a crime where he was only getting a small cut, so he turned state’s evidence for immunity. He testified and named everyone involved in the case. After his testimony, he received special permission to go to either an acting audition or to an acting job, (I’m not sure which), but he had permission to leave the Dallas, TX area.
He never showed up to his destination.
According to my brother, my mom just thought it was my dad being his usual self. He often said he would be somewhere and never show up. No one really thought much of it. Until my mother received a phone call.
One of her relatives saw a story in an Arkansas paper about a man found murdered on a farmer’s property. He had been stripped naked, tied to the fence and shot several times. The article listed several things that made my mother’s relative think it was my father Giovanni. My mother flew to Little Rock Arkansas to view the body. She positively identified my father.
That is where the lies and secrets began.
She told everyone it was a car wreck. How the hell no one found out what had really happened is pure luck. I recently spoke with a Detective in my local area about how to get the information concerning this trial. I have researched it online as much as I can and I have found nothing. No records of a big federal trial at that time. Nothing. The Detective explained that if my father’s death was at all attributed to the direct evidence given in the trial, the entire case and all its testimony would be on lock down until all persons involved are dead. Even the Freedom of Information Act couldn’t get anything released.
So here I sit, with this multitude of information. I can’t move forward because I can’t get the information needed. I don’t want to go backwards. Shit, the past was hard enough the first go round. So I wait. I keep researching and asking questions.
It’s frustrating. It adds another layer to a mess of emotions left behind when my mother died. I’m not really angry at my mom. Frustrated is a better word. She always told me she did the best she could with what she knew. I live by those words now with my own kids.
I research. And I wait.
If you have any information that may help me in my research, please contact me at email@example.com. I would appreciate any help in this matter.
About the Author
Victoria M. Patton lives with her husband of twenty years and her two teenagers, as well as three dogs and a cat. Her years in the Coast Guard doing Search and Rescue/Law Enforcement and her BS in Forensic Chemistry have led her to write Crime Fiction. She gears her blog Whiskey and Writing towards helping new authors in their endeavor to write their first book. Check out her author website at www.victoriampatton.com. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. She would love to hear from you.
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