My first encounter working with the man was in 1998. We met on my first suspicious death scene as an evidence technician...all our technicians are sworn officers. He was tall, elderly, but stoic and carried his intelligence around just as much as his friendly smile.
The house was in the BIG TREE AREA and the man had been dead many days. He was found by two friends who entered the home. They immediately suspected he died a horrible death...the house was ransacked...he was naked...porn was up on the computer... S & M gadgets were hanging from the ceiling including a large penis mouse trap...that said...."insert dick here for optimal pleasure." Ouch. I even cringed at the thought...and I didn't have a dick.
All the kitchen cupboards were open...plastic sacks everywhere. Food dumped out of the pantry cupboard and spilled cereal...half eaten. Toilet paper rolls strewn all over the utility room...with claw marks in them. Everything else was neat and tidy. Lots of cats. Everywhere. Running around freaked out at our presence.
Only I didn't suspect a homicide like the ladies. Cats. They were hungry. Scared. Been left alone with a dead man for a few days. Naturally...they would play with the toilet paper and plastic sacks. And try to find food. The cupboards opened easy and were not level, so some of them never stayed shut.
Doc agreed with me. No homicide. The autopsy later confirmed that. Probably a heart attack while on the shitter. But the victim was a peculiar man. Doc and I were fascinated with his life and had to explore...well, there was that...and a search warrant.
A well-known forensic pathologist, Doc had credentials longer than Center Street. He had testified in many famous trials. Been on 60 Minutes. Cold Case. In books. We were lucky to have him. I learned a lot over the years from him. Most of all...I learned a lot about deviant sex from our first case together.
The victim was found naked...face first in the kitty litter box...full of kitty poo. When we turned him over...he had a duct taped penis. Shaved body. The porn on his computer showed him dressed up in women's clothing and in various S & M poses...and hanging from his dick stuck in his penis trap from the ceiling. Apparently the cats were also famous porn stars and various pics included them in all their fluffiness being sexually manipulated. Way gross.
The treasures were endless. The detectives had initially disagreed with our findings of a cat ransacking and had obtained a search warrant. Ohhh... the fun we were about to have... that hadn't happened yet. It didn't take long into the execution of the search warrant to discover a man who lived in an underground world.
ME: What the? Cepi, what in the world is this?
OFFICER CEPI: Ewwww....what is that?
It squiggled. It moved when my gloved finger touched in. Neat and tidy and in order in the top dresser drawer. Somehow I felt (no pun intended) it had been important in this man's life.
DOC: Let me see.
DOC picked them up without gloves and wiggled them around. And placed them against his chest.
DOC: These are some of the best silicone bra inserts I have ever seen. See? Feel.
I poked one. Cepi poked one. We grimaced. Eww.
DOC: They have serial numbers on them. See? He must have put these in when he dressed up in women's clothing.
CEPI: Way ucky.
DOC: At least he was clean. These were important to him because they were orderly and clean. And on the top drawer.
Cepi and I continued to search despite the fact we both thought we had no homicide. Ok. So we were ordered to search. Dang authority.
The bottom drawer contained the Mother Load. Cepi fell backward when he pulled "IT" out of the drawer. It was blue. Way blue. Like police blue. With a thing. Hard thing.
I. SCREAMED. LIKE. A. GIRL.
ME: What the hell is that thing?
CEPI: I don't know. I'm afraid to touch it.
DOC finally saw our demise and put on some rubber gloves and joined our treasure hunting.
DOC: Oh. Yes. I see.
CEPI: Yeah, what? I don't get it.
DOC: It's a bouncy butt plugger, don't you know? Like a Hippity Hop with a butt plugger...a Hippity Hop with a hard on. See...he bounced and you know the rest.
ME: Ok. Ok. NO more. I'm done.
CEPI: Me too. Let's go to the kitchen.
Doc laughed. I think he liked to freak us out. And that was just the beginning.
We were to have a lot of fun on future calls. We all admired him for his accomplishments, prestige, and intelligence. Yet, he was a kind and simple man. Very kind. And he loved cops.
A couple years ago, Doc finally retired. Dementia had started to kick in and he realized he should step down from decades of being the County Coroner and only pathologist in Wyoming. Many people did not know of his mental condition. He had stopped doing autopsies two years prior to his retirement. Not because of his Dementia, but because he was old and his eyes were tired. But we always learned from him.
The last few years of his political reign as Coroner, he had consulted me on several infant deaths. I always got a hug and kiss when he greeted me. He was 80 when he left office.
He passed away in his home Saturday after losing his beloved wife to cancer a few years ago. She had been his fire and drive for life. After she passed away, the liveliness in him had become deflated, although he tried to stay chipper for everyone that worked close to him. His voice always rang in my ears everytime I've been at an autopsy remembering what he taught me about how a body endures death, as it will continue when something strikes his memory. It was an honor and privilege for me to have worked with him. He will be sorely missed.
I can still hear his distinct voice and laugh..." It's a bouncy butt plugger, don't you know? "