Ben Churchinoff is a small-town captain on the Juneau police force. The type of crimes he is accustomed to dealing with resembles breaking up bar fights, petty theft, and prostitution. The latter being something that Ben usually ignores because of its prevalence in a small town in Alaska. He usually wakes up in the morning to a warm cup of coffee, the sports section of the Juneau Empire, and breakfast with his wife, usually consisting of your basic bacon and eggs combination. Afterwards, Ben takes a short jaunt down Front Street and a right turn on Franklin Street which takes him directly to the Juneau Police Department.
Customarily, Juneau’s deputy chief, Steve Robinson, is waiting for him at the office. They both walk into Ben’s office and review the previous evening’s police reports. Typically, they consist of the drunks and the homeless admitted during the wee hours of the night; however, on June 16th, 2017, Ben is given a missing person’s report. Adrienne Gregor, five feet four inches tall, bleach blonde hair and blue eyes has been missing for forty-eight hours. According to the police report, they found her car at the Thunder Mountain Trailhead, just on the edge of the Mendenhall Valley. There is nothing to suggest that there was a struggle or that she came there against her own will. According to the file, Gregor was either a naïve hiker trying to hike the trail on her own and unfortunately took a misstep, or Gregor had an unfortunate encounter with a black or brown bear. They are prevalent in the area, and for some reason, they have been extra active this year. Apparently, Officer Robinson shares his captain’s beliefs and is not afraid to voice them.
“Sir, we could send any number of agents to investigate,” Officer Robinson says. “You don’t have to waste your time.”
“I suppose you’re right,” Ben says while he thumbs through Adrienne Gregor’s information. There is a list of friends and family. She was unmarried, but she survived by a younger sister. Churchinoff taps the pages with his thumb while he thinks about what his next move is going to be.
If you enjoy crime thrillers, then A Story of Betrayal is for you!