DEGENERACY - SYNOPSIS
Jennifer Bullin has been promoted to the rank of detective sergeant. It is more of a surprise to her than to anyone else. Within three months of filling her new post, she is placed, temporarily, in charge of a gruesome murder enquiry; that of a paedophile who has been horribly tortured and brutally slain in his basement where he, himself, had been torturing and raping a young girl. The door is blown open, the youngster is saved further abuse and the stranger, after settling the girl upstairs, does unimaginable things to the paedophile.
From there, the incidence of paedophile murder grows, and Bullin’s task force grows with it. A new sergeant is added, Allen Forbes, and the two are instantly attracted to each other. He is slightly older and more experienced but he guides her through the pitfalls and tries, at all times, to watch her back.
They make some headway but, when they think they have achieved a major breakthrough, those who make up four of the avenging angels (the fathers of the abused children) are also murdered. Bullin and Forbes realise there is more to the case than the killing of paedophiles. Because, left behind at three of the paedophiles murder scenes, they have found letters, video camera tripods and copies of each tape, Forbes suggests the killings may be filmed to sell as types of snuff flicks. Bullin dismisses this as nonsense but, eventually, it appears that Forbes was almost correct in his guess.
Bullin’s nemesis is a woman called Avril Powell. She, with her partner, Henry Twill, are the organisers of the avenging angels but even they are not the top of the pile. Avril Powell develops a fixation for Jennifer Bullin which begins while she is using her undoubted computer skills, and sophisticated equipment, to trace the progress of the police investigation. She unearths a medical record for Melissa Bullin (the detective’s mother). That leads her deeper and she discovers that Bullin was attacked as an adolescent and sexually assaulted by three boys. Avril, in her fragile mind, immediately feels a kinship with Bullin because she, also, was sexually dealt with as a child, while in foster care with the current police commissioner, James Austin. Avril feels she must bond with Bullin and sends Henry, an ex-SAS soldier, to kidnap the detective.
Bullin is rescued from the large country house belonging to Twill and Powell, but the pair, using Twill’s high level, military training, escape and take refuge in one of his boltholes on the high ground of The Cotswolds.
The climax is played out in Avril’s large country house, before they manage to slip away into the night, leaving behind their captives and a string of murders. Those at the head of the recorded murder ring remain at large.
Published: 3 June 2016