Murder Mystery Night

Murder Mystery Night

Scene 2

Nigel is called to the witness stand.  He gives an account of Stuart bursting into his home while FOCUS was meeting at about 8:05 PM, and how he asked Stuart to come outside and talk about it.  Nigel says how he walked to the phone box, made the call and returned home.  He is asked about his relationship with Lisa as he talks about why he phones her Ė he insists they were purely friends, but the prosecution suggests there is more to it than that.  He gets a little hot under the collar about this and is then dismissed from the witness stand.

Court Clerk Nigel CoatesÖ  (Nigel rises and comes to the witness stand)
Judge Please take your oath.
Lisa I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
Judge Mr Larkin, I suspect you have some questions for Mr Coates?
Defence Yes your honour.  Mr Coates, would you tell the court what you were doing on the evening of the 8th of January?
Nigel Yes, sir.  I was leading FOCUS andÖ
Defence FOCUS?
Nigel A discussion group for young people.  Anyway, at just a little after eight Stuart burst in and started yelling at me.
Defence Burst in where, Mr Coates?
Nigel My house.
Judge Mr Coates, the jury doesnít know the intricacies of your life.  Please keep your testimony specific.
Nigel Yes your honour, Iím sorry.
Defence What did Stuart say to you?
Nigel He shouted at me that Lisa was pregnant, which I already knew because it was really obvious, and then started asking me if I was responsible for it.  He asked me over and over again.  I suggested that we went outside of my house to talk about it.  He agreed as he could see there were young people around, so we went outside onto my drive. 
Defence What happened next?
Nigel We talked for the next 10 or 15 minutes.  He was really angry all of the time, but I managed to convince him that it wasnít me who had got Lisa pregnant.  He muttered something about James and Rachel and stormed off in his car, probably there.
Defence And once he had gone you returned to your youth group?
Nigel No, I decided I needed to talk to Lisa about this.  To find out what was going on and sort things out.  I was in shock.  So I went up to the phone box and made a call to Lisa.  We talked for just over ten minutes on the phone.  Once the phone call has finished I went straight back to FOCUS, my youth group.  It was 9:00 by the time I got there and the meeting finishes at about 9:00, so myself and the other youth leader, Mrs Jenny Garvey, took the young people home.
Defence Thank you Mr Coates.  Mr WorthingtonÖ
Prosecution Mr Coates, you took Stuart outside of your house to talk with him.  Can you clarify for us why this was?
Nigel I just didnít think it was appropriate in front of the young people.
Prosecution After Stuart had left, you went to a phone box to make a phone call.  Surely you have a phone in your house, Mr Coates?
Nigel Of course I do, but I didnít want any of the young people to overhear what I was saying.
Prosecution Iím sure a man like you would possess a mobile phone?
Nigel I have one, but I donít use it much.
Prosecution So you instead decided to go to the nearest telephone box?
Nigel Yes
Prosecution Mr Coates, how far away is the nearest telephone box?
Nigel Itís up in the village, so thatís about 10 minutes on foot.
Prosecution Did you wish to get back to your youth group as soon as possible?
Nigel Yes, sir.
Prosecution Then why didnít you use your car?
Nigel I didnít think of it at the time.
Prosecution If you were away from 8:20 and didnít return until 9:00 PM then it appears you have managed to lose between 10 and 15 minutes of time somewhere in your story Mr Coates.  This is very convenient.
Nigel Maybe I spent longer on the phone, or maybe I walked slower than normal.
Prosecution When people are anxious, they tend to hurry rather than dawdle.  Would you not agree?
Nigel Yes, sir.
Prosecution Then your apparent loss of the time casts some doubt over your innocence.  If you were to have taken your car, would there not have been time for you to follow Stuart to Jamesís?
Nigel There may have been.
Prosecution You swore to tell the truth.  Now tell us if there was time.
Nigel (Angrily)  How could I know when I didnít go there?
Prosecution Mr Coates, what was your relationship with Lisa Burton like?
Nigel We were friends.
Prosecution What sort of friends?
Nigel Good friends.  We enjoyed each otherís company.
Prosecution Maybe you could share with us what kind of company you gave each other?
Nigel We just didÖfriend stuff.
Prosecution Being single must make you long for a relationship.
Nigel Not really.
Prosecution Lisa was just the ticket for you, wasnít she?
Nigel (Getting annoyed) What are you suggesting?
Prosecution That you enjoyed her friendship a little too much.
Nigel (Angrily shouts) No!
Prosecution And one day you didnít protect yourself as well as you should have.
Nigel (Yells)  She was my friend!
Judge Mr Coates, please calm yourself down.
Nigel (still shouting) Heís accusing me of having sexual relations with my friend!
Defence Maybe thatís enough questions for Mr Coates right now.
Judge Mr Worthington, are you in agreement?
Prosecution Yes, your Honour, if he can be recalled later in the case.
Judge So be it.  Sustained.  Mr Coates, go and calm yourself.  Next witness.


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Copyright 1998-2004 Nigel Coates / Jonathan Worthington
Last updated 20 June 2005 16:31

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