The sleet was like needles against my face as I crossed the street to Seagram’s Sweet Shoppe. I remember coming here as a kid, sampling all the delicious goodies they offered, but I never imagined that I’d be here as a detective investigating a crime. I entered the back door and squeezed past bags of sugar that lined the hallway to the owner’s office.
“Good morning, Mr. Seagram. I’m Detective Sanders. You reported a theft that happened sometime last night. Is that right?”
The elderly gentleman nodded. “Yes, it’s horrible. Yesterday’s cash deposit was ready for the bank. I always leave it ready, on my desk, with my office door locked. I worked late last night. When I came back this morning, my door was pried open and the cash was gone!”
“Do you have a night crew here?” I asked as he offered me a taffy stick.
“Yes, but a very small one… only three people: my chocolatier, my sugar artist and the warehouse manager. But they’ve been with me for years. I can’t imagine any of them stealing.”
“We can’t rule anyone out,” I cautioned. “Are they here now?”
“Yes, as soon as I discovered the theft, I called everyone back to the shop.” He scurried out and within seconds, the sugar artist entered.
I began to speak but my words were cut off within seconds. “First off,” she interrupted, “I didn’t steal anything. And second, I’m an artist. My love is creating. I have no interest in that old man’s cash.”
“Okay… well, did you hear or see anything out of the ordinary last night?” I asked, patiently
“Only if you call blasting rock and roll music all night from the production room out of the ordinary. Maybe you should speak to John-paul, our annoyingly ‘stuck in the rock era’ chocolate guy.”
“Will you please send him in,” I said, jotting down notes.
“Sure thing,” she said and sashayed out of the room.
A ponytailed man soon appeared, complete with a bandanna on his brow and a torn shirt sporting a concert date of nearly two decades ago.
“Sir, I was told you were blasting music last night while you worked…” I began.
“Yeah, I always do. Is that a crime now? Did I wake the neighbors?” He chuckled under his breath, but soon stopped after noticing there was no trace of a smile on my face.
“No, but playing loud music would drown out someone attempting to smash through a door, wouldn’t it?” I asked.
“Listen, I was in the production room all night. I play music every night. It’s nothing new. Now that some money’s gone, the music is a problem? You’ll need better evidence then that. Arrest me if you want. Otherwise leave me alone.”
With that, he slammed through the double-doors. What a bunch of sour people in such a sweet place, I thought. But the investigation had to continue and only the warehouse manager remained.
“Sir, would you mind retracing your steps here last night?” I requested.
“Of course not. Follow me into the freezer for a moment and you can see what happened.”
As we walked in to the freezer, my foot squelched in liquid chocolate. He sighed. “It was around midnight when I began to stock the freezer from an earlier delivery,” the manager said.
“I was just about done, when I tried to place this bucket of molten chocolate on an upper shelf. The lid popped off and it all fell right on my head, covering me and—as you can see—the floor.
“I couldn’t work like that, and since I had nothing else pending, I left early and went home. I was surprised when I got the call to come back this morning.”
“Thank you. I have no more questions,” I said, dismissing him and going to find the owner once again.
“Good news, sir,” I smiled. “I know who took your money!” — Michael D ’angona
Q: Who stole the candy shop cash?
The winter olympics