What most people don’t realize about my story is it ends right where it began and there isn’t another word to it at all. One night, on November 13th, 2016, I woke up to find a body in the middle of my bedroom floor. I didn’t know it at the time, but it was David “Dutch” Percy, a man who had disappeared in 1998 from Salt Lake City Utah. He had been beaten to death with a blunt instrument of some sort, baseball bat from what the autopsy showed, and to be honest with you, I never really got a good look at him. I turned on the light, saw a body on my floor, got dressed, and got the hell out of the house.
Of course, anytime anyone has anybody dead in their home, there’s a reasonable amount of suspicion as to how that person came to be dead and on the floor of the bedroom, so I spent a night in jail. But even though Mr. Percy had been beaten to death, horribly, there was no blood in my home except on the floor where he lay. There was no blood on me, except where I stepped in it, and there was no splatter marks, no baseball bat, no blood in my truck, and for that matter, remarkably little blood anywhere but on the floor, where there was a lot of blood. Mr. Percy, wherever he had met misfortune, was still somewhat alive when the cops got there but died very soon after.
The last time anyone heard from Dutch Percy it was a cold day in Salt Lake City. He had just finished eating dinner with his family; they had spaghetti with meatballs and a salad. He told his wife and four kids that he would go get some popcorn and they would watch a movie on the television and he walked out of their house and landed in the middle of my bedroom floor eighteen years later and beaten to death.
I was a very likely suspect except there was no reason for me to have killed someone who had been missing for eighteen years, there was no murder weapon, and the murder couldn’t have happened at my house, or for that matter, anywhere near where I lived. None of that really mattered to anyone in law enforcement because dead guy on your floor pretty much means you did it. Yet things began to get awfully strange awfully quick, I mean, other than the dead guy on the floor thing, which was not to be topped, and they fished out Percy’s ID and went through his pockets. There was a hundred dollars in twenties and tens and ones, none of them newer than 1998. There was a pocketful of change and none of it was newer than 1998. They contacted his family, his wife had died a few years ago but his kids never stopped looking for him, and the description of what he was wearing when he left matched the clothes he died in. And the autopsy revealed that his last meal, eaten within a few minutes of death, was spaghetti with meatballs, and a salad.
About ten FBI agents got together at a table and were discussing the lead theory, which was that I had killed Dutch Percy, and they decided just to ignore all the weird stuff and concentrate on the evidence. I was staying with a friend as they tore my house apart and the more they looked the less they found. Then there was the fact that Dutch Percy was six-three, 220 pounds, and thirty-five years old and had played football in High School and was an avid hiker. I’m sixty and weigh 170 and can bench press a French Poodle on my best days. Then they went to my place, had one of the agents lay on a tarp covered in water with a dye in it that showed up under black light. And try at they might, it always took four guys to get a body in without getting any of the dye on something. And it took some practice, a lot of practice, to finally get it right. They got together at another meeting and one of them said, “Hey, screw it, everyone empty your pockets right now.” And so all ten of them dumped their change and bills and not one of them had nothing but old money in their pockets. So they’re all sitting there with this money in front of them and right then and there the FBI decided that as odd as it might look, it was not only likely that I had not murdered Dutch Percy, it was almost a certainty that I hadn’t been there, and he hadn’t been in my home, when the attack occurred.
They didn’t offer an explanation. Of course, they didn’t have to either, because the internet came to life on this story and the theories, as wild as they were, never quite matched the fact of the truth.
And yes, I did cash in, why wouldn’t I? I went on every talk show that would pay me, met the Percy family, who thought for a long time that I did have something to do with it, but in the end, one of the FBI agents, Rodney Parker, retired and went with me on tour. He said however Mr. Percy came to be where he was, I hadn’t left my house that night. The exhaust pipe on my truck was cold. My cell records were as predictable as the sunrise. The internet sites I visited and my email were deadly boring. Other than the fact there was a dead body in my house there was nothing at all to tie me to a murder that seemed to have happened somewhere else, and the body was taken, somehow, to my house. I had to hand it to Parker. He never flinched. No matter who asked him or how they asked him he always said the same thing, “We honestly have no idea at all what happened.”
Neither did I.
I told you in the beginning this was how it ended. And so it does. If you were looking for anything else, after all these years, I still have no idea what happened.