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AN URBAN CRIME DRAMA
Two twin brothers, grow up in the same household but each take two completely different paths in life. Karlos Hunter was fascinated by fast money and quick opportunities. It wasn’t until he is served a five year prison sentence for drug possession that he vows to change his life around.
Meanwhile, Karlton Hunter is educated and ambitious. A graduate from Michigan State University. He goes on to be the city councilman of Detroit. Karl believes he has it all until he becomes bored within his marriage. Suddenly, an unexplained murder comes into play framing one of the brothers to a crime they did not commit, landing them in jail for a life sentence. Which brother is telling the truth in this urban crime drama?
“Dead Man Walking!”
Yeah, I certainly was a dead man walking. I was being sent to jail for about 20 to life for a crime I didn’t commit. I was innocent. I swear to God, I was innocent. This was a case of mistaken identity. I’ve had my share of run-ins with the law but murder. I’d never do anything that crazy. Well let me back up and tell you how I got myself into this mess. My name is Karlos Hunter, I’m the twin to my brother and local city councilman Karl Hunter. It’s funny we came from the same home but ended up on two completely different paths. He ended up being a successful politician with a beautiful wife and two kids. Meanwhile, I ended up on the wrong side of the tracks you’d say I stayed in trouble. I dropped out of high school while my brother went on to graduate with honors from Michigan State University.
But this mess right here, I had no parts of doing and now I was going to possibly get sent to prison for life. I would be stripped away from my girl Shantae’ and my baby girl Mariah, whose only five years old. I continued to walk down the corridor as police officers led me to the courtroom to hear the judge’s decision. My heart was beating a mile a minute. I couldn’t believe this was becoming my life. I saw my lawyer sitting next to me. And my girl trying to hold it together while my baby slept on her lap. My lawyer snapped me back into reality as the judge started the case.
“We are here to discuss the case of Karlos G. Hunter vs Amanda McKnight. On a count of voluntary manslaughter. Mr. Hunter, you look to serve up to 20 years to life in prison. Is there anything you’d like to say in your defense?” Judge Abernathy asks me.
“Judge, I didn’t kill that girl. I don’t even know who this woman is. I don’t even know who this woman is. I was at home with my fiancé’ and child. I swear…”
“Now Mr. Hunter this isn’t your first time inside my court room. You’ve had plenty of troubles with the law and you stand here trying to tell me you didn’t do this?”
“Your honor, we honestly don’t even have any evidence that Mr. Hunter committed this offense.” My lawyer stated.
“Yes, but we do have history. We all know that there was just a matter of time before Mr. Hunter would move on to much bigger crimes.” The District Attorney added.
“Has the jury finalized their decisions? What is your decision on Hunter vs McKnight.” The judge questioned.
“We the jury have found Mr. Hunter…guilty on 2nd degree murder and voluntary manslaughter of Amanda McKnight.” A female juror said.
I couldn’t believe this shit! I was innocent I didn’t even know a damn Amanda McKnight. Now I had to spend life behind bars for a crime I didn’t event commit? What the hell was going on with our damn justice and legal system?
I turned to look at my lawyer. “I told you. I didn’t do this.”
“I. I know, I’m going to do everything that I can to see you get victory. They’re just going by circumstantial evidence. Don’t worry Mr. Hunter, I’m going to see you get justice.” My lawyer promised as two big burly prison guards started making their way over to me.
“Hey let me have a word with my brother, before you take him away.” My brother Karl said.
“Hey Karl, man. I didn’t do this man! I swear to God this is a case of mistaken identity. I told you I wasn’t going to let you down no more.” I cried.
I promised my brother I’d try to turn my life around and live straight once I became a father.
“You know, Karlos this really breaks my heart to see you like this. In an orange jumpsuit standing in handcuffs. You really disappointed me. Mom, can’t even bring herself to come down here to see you like this?”
“But I told you Karl. I didn’t do this. I’m an innocent man!”
“How many times have I heard this line before? What would Shantae think?” He said to me, before walking away to join his family. All I could do was stand there crying. My brother just wouldn’t believe me. Perhaps, this was my karma for the troubles I’ve caused the community. Before I was taken away, Shantae who also was filled with tears in her eyes, came up to me to give me a tight squeeze.
“I didn’t do this baby! I promise, ‘Tae. I’m innocent. I’d never kill anybody. I’m not that horrible of a human being.”
“I know. I know. I just can’t believe they’d pin this on you. They’re breaking up my family. What am I supposed to tell Mariah?”
“Just be strong. I promise I’ll be out of here soon.” I say to her and give her a kiss on the lips before the guards escort me out of the courthouse.
I was on my way to prison with my heart trembling in my chest. All I could see was my life flashing before my eyes. I think since I’ve told you so much. Let me tell you a little bit about my troubled past.
10 Years Ago
Back Down Memory Lane
From what I remember, the moment my life was beginning to go south started with my senior
year in high school.
Karl and I were getting ready to start our day. As usual he was running around the house to go off to Cass Technical High School. But me I was in my room bumping that West Coast joints. Tupac and Dr. Dre., California Love. As I’m nodding my head to the music my mom bust in the room shutting off my damn music!
“Dammit boy! Cut that rap crap off and get your behind down to that school. I told you that you had to keep your behind in school this year? Hell, you barely made it to the twelfth grade! At this rate, your either going to be dead or in jail. You better than this Karlos.”
“Ma, I’m not feeling school-“
Before I finished my sentence, she slaps me lightly across the face.
“You better do what I tell you. Karl! Come on in here and speak to your brother. I can’t believe two twin boys who came from the same mother can act so differently.” My mom argues before she walks off frustrated.
My little kiss ass brother walks into my room and stares directly at me. I know what he was about to say and I wasn’t trying to hear it. I didn’t have time for that corny stuff.
“Man, Karlos what’s going on with you? How come you won’t get your act together?”
“I’m not trying to hear that mess man. I’m about that trap life. I gotta get money. Why should I sit in a classroom listening to some old ass people talk when I could be on the streets hustling? I’m a boss man, I get money.”
“Man you’re not making any sense. You could be using your brain to get money. Instead, you’re going to get yourself messed up, man.” Karl tried to counsel me all of the time. I knew we didn’t have a pops but I didn’t need my twin brother trying to “mentor” me all of the time. Sometime I just wish he’d be my damn brother instead of this little goody-two shoes.
“Man, alright Karl, let’s go. I’ll rather go to school than listen to you talk about school.”
Karl and I made our way down to school. But while he had thoughts of being this great “I AM” somebody. All I could think of is getting money and owning my neighborhood. See, I had no worry for education; that white-washed fabricated man-made education. I was going to find ways to get mine even if it meant hustling on the block.
As we approached Cass Avenue, I ran into a few partners I hung out with from time to time. These were the Kingpins, hustas and dope boys. Everything my brother hated and tried to get me to stay away from. But they lived a life I could see myself becoming accustom to. They had the women, money and cars. I deserved that lifestyle and I was going to get it through any means necessary.
“Hey what’s up, Karlos? Why don’t’ you come on over here and let me holler at you real quick. I might got some work for you.” My boy Quincy yelled out to me. But before I could even reply Karl shouts back…
“Naw, man he can’t go with you. He got school.”
I look over to him in disbelief. “Man, Q I’ll catch up with you, man.”
“Oh’ alright, Karlos, man. I got you.” Karl shoves me into the direction of the school. We walk down the hallway after being checked through the metal detectors.
“Man, you really need to check who you call your friends. Trust me, bro that dude ain’t your friend. He going to have you caught up in these streets I’m trying to tell you.”
“Man, I’m seventeen year old. I’m a grown ass man. I don’t need you trying to tell me how to run my life. Let me do me.”
“I’m just trying to help.” Karl replied.
“Thank you daddy.” I answered.
“Come on, let’s go to class before we’re late.” Karl warned.
But I had other plans. As I was walking towards the Chemistry class I laid eyes on the finest woman I had ever seen. She was a little brown skin cutie with shoulder length hair. She had the darkest and most beautiful brown eyes I’d ever seen. This girl body was completely on point from head to toe. I had to holler at her.
I could see my brother getting annoyed but I just told him I’d catch up with him later. While he walked off into class. I slowly approached this sista’ hoping to get a name to such a fine ass face.
“Excuse me, miss lady, I don’t think I’ve seen you here before. What’s your name?” I questioned, hoping to win her over.
“What really? I heard all about you Karlos Hunter.” She retorted, walking away.
“Hey, how do you know me? What’d you hear about me?”
“You know, just stuff.” She smiles and began walking towards her locker. As she messed with her combination lock. I stood right beside her. I was going to make this girl mine even if it took me all semester to do it.
“Well, what they tell you about me, sweetheart?”
“Oh, I see you not the type that gives up huh?” She smiled again, she had such a beautiful smile.
“That you were um…that you get around.”
“Huh, that’s all a lie. I don’t have time for that. I try to stay on top of my money. I chase paper. Not women. NO offense. But those are rumors. Don’t listen to rumors. So can I call you some time?” I joked, but seriously hoping she’d give the digits. She rolled her eyes then pulled out her cell phone.
We exchanged numbers and I even got a hug from her before she made her way to French class.
“You want me to carry your books for you?”
“It’s ok. My class is just the next two doors down. But thank you anyway.”
“Hey, you didn’t tell me your name?”
“I’ll call you later Shantae.” I smiled like a kid in a candy store. I had to make Shantae mine. She was smart, sexy and mature. Everything I needed in a girl. But while I was day dreaming about Shantae, my boys, Allen and Teri brought me back to reality.
“Man, what are you doing? Stop thinking about pussy when it’s paper to be made around here. I told you my boy Quincy would put you on.” Allen tried to persuade me to join him in the drug game. As much as I wanted the money. I tried to avoid it. But the amount of cash they make on a regular, sometimes brought me back to where I needed.
“So are you in or what? My man looking for a few more people. And I know how you love getting money man. You could be rolling in a brand new Impala, clocking in those thousands of dollars man. The money don’t sleep. All you gotta do is move a few units, you in there?” Teri also added.
As usual I told them that this was something that I had to think about. I really was trying to stay out of my mom’s hair until I got out school. But there were some things that began to change my mind.
Later That Day
Back at Home
After we ate dinner, I and my brother were in the kitchen washing dishes when we heard our mother crying. Karl and I stopped to see what was making our mother, a woman who’s as strong as a mule, cry.
“Naw, mom, what’s the problem?” Karl asked.
“I just can’t do it anymore. I’m working but it’s just not enough money for me to keep things going.” She cried.
“Mom, what are you talking about?” I questioned concerned.
She sadly pointed to an envelope that red in big, bold red letters: PAST DUE…FINAL NOTICE.
“They’re threatening to cut off the lights if we don’t pay the $364. And if we don’t come up with the rent by next week, we’re going to get evicted.”
“Mom, why didn’t you tell us things were this bad?” Karl spoke out.
“Because it’s my job to keep it together for you two boys. I just didn’t want you to worry. Plus, it’s not your responsibility. I was trying to pull in more hours at work but it just wasn’t enough. Now I don’t know what to do.
Listening to my mother stress over shit like bills and rent made me decide what to do with my life real quick. I had to be a man. I had to help out. A man does what a man has to do. Right now, this man had to come up with some cash…quick. At that moment I knew exactly what I had to do to get it.