On the occasion of the East Coast book release for Nick Flessa's Case Number: 87-447
Case number: 87-447
A document in five sections: Conclusions, Petition, Discrimination, Forensics and Inheritance. Aggravated accounts. Papers making sense of a violent crime show signs of systemic racism. A murder and a death sentence. Dated forensic analyses. I am piecing together my family history and its involvement in this system. My mother was the assistant prosecutor. She made the closing statement and helped select the jury. Her actions were petitioned along with the verdict. An attempt to make orderly decisions about a violence creates a paper trail of disorder, one that is enacting violence itself. Court transcripts, letters, petitions, forensic evidence, newspaper clips, scans of photographs. Life in the hands of bureaucrats; their correspondences on record. My mother's name in print, reading a script. Her last major case; pregnant during trial. Speaking for the victim, Mary Acoff. It happened on Highland Avenue. 1987. Red lines everywhere. The man she sentenced to death shares my birthday. This is one take on the true crime novel. To satisfy a morbid curiosity regarding the banal history of American violence. An arrangement of piecemeal evidence.