Editing by TeNderLoin
This is my ending to Saxon Hart's story, In the Dark . If you haven't read that story, this story will make no sense. In my story, there are no ex-Navy Seals, and the like. Rather my series of events include things that are legally allowable. Oh, it does end with the total destruction of Ken Ingalls.
My name is Darleen Ingalls. You might have read about what happened to me in Saxon Hart's story: In the Dark. In that story, you learned how that bastard of my ex-husband, Ken Ingalls, and his employers framed me for drug smuggling in Thailand. I was sentenced to forty years of imprisonment and that's where I learned that sometimes life could be worse than death.
Well, here is the story of my redemption. This is from the diary I kept. There is not much conversation in it, nor is there any sex, per se.
Oh, and by the way ... Scalia (who helped me get my diary ready for your reading enjoyment) wants you to know that everything written here about the law can and has happened in real life.
June 1, 2008: Another date with Eric. It went well until he spent the night. At 3:00 AM, I awakened him by screaming 'NO' over and over again. The fact that my arms and legs were flailing, and I repeatedly hit him, did not help. When I finally woke, he asked what the fuck just happened. When I told him the truth, he just got dressed and left. Fuck, fuck, fuck, and fuck again.
June 15, 2008: Another nightmare about my imprisonment. It started like all the rest: I wasn't imprisoned for drug smuggling. No, it was for cheating on Ken. Then, every time I was beat up, sent to the hole, etc., Ken would appear and say, "See, bitch? This is what you get for cheating on me." This must have been the 15th night in a row. If I don't do something soon, I will go crazy.
July 1,2008: My therapist recommended I join a self-help group of ex-cons telling their stories. A Professor at a local college ran it. I told mine, swore it was the truth, and that night I did not have the nightmare.
July 3, 2008: Professor called and asked if I would tell my story to his class on the 15th. Said I would. Again no nightmare!! Third night in a row!!!
July 7, 2008: Went on my third date with John last night. We ended up in bed and falling asleep together. Again no nightmare or flailing: seventh nights without the nightmare. YIPPEE. Also, I'd had the first major orgasm since I got back from Thailand. I don't know what is more exciting; that I had an earth shattering orgasm, that I hadn't had my nightmare in seven days, or that John and I are going to meet again on the 10th.
July 15, 2008: Gave a 30-minute talk to the Professor's college class dealing with imprisonment around the world. Three students walked out, and another two vomited in class. One student asked me a question, "So what kind of punishment do you think is fair for drug smuggling?" When I replied, "The funny part is that I did not smuggle drugs. This was for cheating on my husband," you could see the smirk on everybody's face like, "Yea, your husband went to all this trouble to nail your cheating ass. Give me a break."
July 17, 2008: Professor Jameson called and thanked me for my presentation. He asked if I would be willing to speak to other groups about my experience. I said, "Yes."
August 15, 2008 - December 1, 2010: Thus began my lectures. I talked to any group that would have me. Primarily it was college students, but sometimes it was high school kids, and occasionally professional groups. When asked if I had actually dealt drugs, I answered 'no.' I said that it was a set-up, and left it at that. By the time two years were over, I was giving the same canned lecture to groups in an eight-county area.
September 1, 2010: Gave a lecture to a class. One student asked if I had ever seen Ken again. I said I thought I had, but the SOB seemed to have vanished into the wind.
September 3, 2010: Came home and found an envelope taped to my door. Inside were Ken's current home and work address, phone numbers, social security numbers, credit reports, and the like. Ken is currently living a Portland, Oregon. Also attached was his Linked-In and Facebook profiles along with a notation I was now Friended by Ken. I went onto the computer and sure enough there was my SOB ex-husband, with pictures of his wife, my sister Louise, and their daughters. I found out what church they went to, and the civic groups they were involved with. I even saw a picture of their homes (one primary and two vacation condos, one in Maui and the other in Paris France) along with pictures from their last three trips. One look and realizing what my cheating had cost me, I immediately ran to the bathroom and puked my guts out.
December 1, 2010: Gave a lecture at "Women's Empowerment: Women Helping Women in the Work-Place." Met Ms. Alicia Keys, Attorney at Law. At the coffee and Danish meet and greet afterwards, she asked, "Well Darleen, if your husband set this whole thing up to punish you, where did he get the money? It must have cost at least a hundred, to a hundred and twenty thousand to buy and waste one kilo of heroin. Where did you get the money?" I stood there mute as I had an epiphany. Finally Alicia asked if I was ok. I snapped out of it and said out-loud, "Where did the fucking money come from? We were the average upper middle class family. We didn't have that kind of money and I could not see his employer giving Ken the money to set me up. Where the fuck did the money come from!"
December 15, 2010: Alicia called. She wants me to meet her old college roommate, Michele Zambraski. She said Michele's an agent at the local office of the Drug Enforcement Agency. She said I should just tell my story truthfully, and leave it at that.
Dealing with the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)
December 21, 2010: I met with Michele, and immediately got the impression that she too thought I was just a 'drug mule' who got caught. The only spark in her eyes was when I told her I had no idea where Ken got the money. I gave all the contact information the unknown party left on my door.
April 1, 2011: Something weird was going on. Michele asked me, no demanded, that I come back for a second interview. When I told her I was too busy, she said if I came, I might ultimately get some closure.
April 2, 2011: Called Alicia and asked her, "What the 'F' is going on? Michele wants me to return." She said she would check into it.
April 15, 2011: Had an appointment with Alicia. She first said, "You have to hire me as your attorney. Give me a dollar." I did and she then said. "As your attorney, all I know is that Michele followed through, and Ken's name is flagged, or something. From here on out, tell the DEA the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Also, I will be at your next interview."
May 7, 2011: Went for the second interview. Besides Alicia and Michele, three other men were present. Two introduced themselves. The third, the oldest, just sat in the back and never said anything to me. He just scribbled notes, which he passed on to the two others. This time the questions were detailed. They included details about my Thai visit, my arrest, and the imprisonment; details that I never mentioned to anyone. Then I was shown pictures of Ken's Thai "employers." The men were obviously a few years older, but I could clearly identify them. I was then asked if I had ever been to their homes (I hadn't) or their place of work (I hadn't). Finally, I was asked if I knew what Ken's employers did or where Ken fit into the organization. I was shocked, but I realized I really did not know what Ken did. It took most of the day to complete, and I was emotionally drained by the end.
June 15, 2011: Alicia called. This time the DEA wanted me to take a polygraph exam. I told Alicia I wouldn't do anything unless I knew what was going on and I was protected.
June 22, 2011: Alicia received a letter from the DEA. It asked for my cooperation in an on-going investigation. Further I was not the target and to remind me that lying to the DEA was a federal felony.
July 15, 2011: Took the damn polygraph.
July 29, 2011: Alicia calls and tells me we have to meet for lunch the next day ... When I told her I was already scheduled to work, she said: "Trust me you really, really have to be there. This is very important."
July 30, 2011: Went to lunch and somehow Alicia and another man were seated in a deserted corner. Alicia said, "Darlene, this is Mike Kane. He's an attorney. You need to give him a dollar and hire him." I looked at her and said, "What is going on?" As soon as I finished she replied, "Give him the damn dollar!" I did and then she introduced him as Mike Kane.
Turns out Mike is a former DEA prosecutor, and is now a criminal defense lawyer. When I heard the words "criminal defense attorney," I nearly peed in my panties. Once the pleasantries were done, Alicia looked at her watch and said, "Damn it, Darlene. I forgot I have another appointment. I'll just leave you with Mike."
The moment she left Mike lowered the boom. "The DEA wants you to testify before a grand jury investigating drug trafficking from Thailand. You can appear voluntarily or you can be compelled to testify. Trust me, you want to be on the DEA's good side, so you need to agree to voluntarily testify." All this time I was thinking, "Oh shit, what the fuck have I gotten myself into." He ended up by saying he would represent me for the $1 only, provided that I follow his rules. First and foremost, I was to tell him the truth and only the truth. If he ever caught me in a lie, he would walk away! The second rule, was to follow the first rule. Over the next week, we would meet in his office. We'd go over my story, time and time again. On the last day, there was an investigator present.
Both think that my question as to where the money came from, must have gotten to someone in the DEA. So, they just followed it. And it ultimately led to something that was far bigger than 'cheating on your spouse.'
July 26, 2011: I testified before the grand jury. In addition to every thing that was covered in my earlier meetings, I was asked to identify my old tax returns. Afterwards, I was warned not to discuss my presence before the grand jury, or the testimony I gave, with anyone other than my attorney.
September 15, 2011: Once again Mike called me into his office. He was ecstatic. "We've got Ken by the short hairs. The investigator discovered the following facts:
1. Before the fateful trip, Ken and I had initially filed a joint dissolution of marriage giving each 50% of the marriage assets, but that we had withdrawn it. My "signature" was on that petition. The trouble is that it was not my signature and anyways on that date I allegedly "signed" before a Notary, I was across the country visiting my sister, Louise.
2. During the second divorce, Ken told the court:
a. He had visited me numerous times in jail;
b. He had hired me a local Thai lawyer; and
c. He had personally seen me sign the divorce papers and it was I who had wanted the 5%, not Ken.
According to the San Diego investigator, there was evidence that would prove those statements false. And then it got worse:
1. Neither our lifestyle in San Diego nor his present lifestyle could be supported by an upper middle management employee's salary;
2. Ken mislead the court as to our assets — we were really very wealthy but Ken made out we were the typical living paycheck to paycheck couple;
3. Ken really owned the company he "worked" for;
4. We had owned a number of companies and real estate throughout Southern California; and
5. Ken provided copies of our tax returns to the court. The investigator said there was something wrong with the returns; he just did not know what it was.
This is when I had my second epiphany: My arrest and imprisonment was not for cheating, but so Ken could keep me quiet and hide these assets. He was afraid what else might come out in a divorce, like questions as to where the money came from to buy these companies and real estate.