Free ebook this weekend! Plus $2.99 thriller!

For 2 days only!  The ebook Guest Of Honor is free this weekend. Normally a whopping $.99, it is now FREE.

18-year old MEGAN DUST lives the wild life. Parties, booze, boys--you name it, she does it. Her parents don't care what she does, and when she is home they ignore her. Their attitude started over a year ago when Megan's older brother was tragically killed in a car accident.

Then, when her parents die on the same road that took her brother, Megan decides to start over and move far away. She auctions off her parents' property, a country home in northwestern Minnesota, and heads down to the Twin Cities.

Megan knows hitchhiking is dangerous, but lately has become a way of life. And this time is no different. She gets picked up by Bart Simms, an attorney from Minneapolis, who agrees to take her where she needs to go. But only after he conducts a bit of estate planning business.

The Engels are a farming family who live not far from Megan's old place. They revel peacefully in their secluded backwoods sanctuary, and have a strong desire to keep as much of the government away from their family's farming legacy. Hence the reason they sought the impecable skills of Bart Simms, who has a deep reputation for saving many family farms from unwanted death and estate taxes.

But Megan has a problem with the Engels. She has never heard of them, and she's lived in the area all of her life. When she explores their home, she finds more that is out of sorts. She discovers a picture of a teenage girl. A girl who resembles that of a recent murder victim from Minneapolis.

Is there more to this backwoods family than meets the eye?

After picking up Guest Of Honor, be sure to also pick up my latest thriller Beholder's Eye. It is only $2.99 in the Amazon Kindle store.

Link to Guest Of Honor
Link to Beholder's Eye

Abduction of Patricia Waterman

Twelve days ago, from the Arch Mall parking lot, sixteen-year-old Patricia Sue Waterman of Minneapolis was abducted.

Eyewitness accounts from the five friends she was with indicate the abduction vehicle is a blue Chevy Astro minivan.  The suspect wore all-black clothing, including a face mark.  Height was between five-six and five-eight, and weight was around one fifty.

"We were going to Glitzy," one of her friends said to me, sniffling and wiping away tears.  "Then this guy just came up, ran out, and smacked her."

"Did anyone try running?" I asked.

She shook her head.  "It all happened so fast.  God, it was over in like ten seconds."

A call in with Minneapolis VCU Investigator Simon Templeton indicated that stranger abductions of this nature are rare, and an Amber Alert has been issued.  They have no suspects so far, but they're checking all of the known registered sex offenders.

Signed, Dexter L Grant - AKA The Twin Cities Crime Blogger

For more information on this abduction, please check out the novel Beholder's Eye.

Meet Kolin Raynes

Kolin Raynes grew up in the northeastern Minnesota town of Hibbing.

So much of popular culture shaped his world.  At a young age, he wanted to be a boxer after watching Sylvester Stallone's Rocky movies.  Immediately, he started training by running around their small suburban house one Saturday morning.  After a few laps, however, he was exhausted.

His boxing career was officially over.

Next, he watched the Indiana Jones movies and wanted so much to be an archaeologist.  The only problem with this plan was that virtually none of them lived the kind of life Indy did.

Scratch that plan.

Just after high school graduation, he got accepted to Bemidji State University.  He had an undeclared major, until one night he watched America's Most Wanted, and spiraling that thought in with the classic movie Silence of the Lambs, he declared a major of Criminal Justice.

Even though his career goal was to work for the FBI, he took a job as a part-time deputy for Glade County, in Glade, Minnesota--a small farming community roughly fifty miles north of the Twin Cities.  His first shift also turned out to be the most memorable of his career so far, as he was called upon to investigate the case of a missing teenage girl who lived out in the rural county.  Six days later, after a massive search, the body of Trisha Sandberg was found brutally murdered.

The case to this day remains unsolved.

A few months after the Sandberg case, Kolin got a job as a street cop for the Minneapolis PD.  He worked there for over a decade before finally landing an investigator position for the PD's Violent Crime Unit.

Have you seen this girl? Last seen along King of Trails.

Megan Dust
18-years of age
Warren, MN
Last seen on Highway 75--known as the King of Trails--north of Crookston, Minnesota.
Megan recently experienced the tragic death of her parents, and was seen hitchhiking down to the Twin Cities for reasons unknown.  She may have been picked up by an older gentleman, driving a black Cadillac.

Dexter L. Grant - AKA the Twin Cities Crime Blogger

Tragic end at the Walnut Hotel

Samantha Larson was a farm girl, a protege of hard work, having grown up living right along the Minnesota side of the Iowa border.

She was the oldest of three siblings.  She always had her eye on graduating from college and moving on to get a good job in the Twin Cities.  Her parents supported this, however when they were not able to completely foot the bill, she dug her heels in--literally, in this case--and went to work.  And she did it in a unique way for her: prostitution.

Three nights ago, that working lifestyle came to a tragic end at the Walnut Hotel in downtown Minneapolis.  This establishment is not known for it's long list of amenities, and is more known for one being able to rent a room with cash by the hour.  And all with no questions asked.  According to investigators, her client came to the room at approximately 11:15pm.  Without performing the usual task seen with prostitutes, he tied her up to the bed and brutally slashed her throat, killing her instantly.  He left around 11:30pm, and her body wasn't discovered until three hours later when her next "client" came for a carnal visit.

In the course of my investigation, a source at the U of M indicated to me that she was enrolled to start in the fall.  She had declared a major in business, although there was neither no record of housing nor any federal loan papers in process at the time of this post.  Speculation may lead one to believe she was "working" to avoid going into debt, for her wallet found at the scene contained over eight hundred dollars in cash: a collection of 50s and 20s.

Why would this hardworking farm girl serve a darker life on the streets, you may wonder?  It's a tale that's been told many times, and in this case we may never know the answers.  Prostitutes lead a dangerous lifestyle, and it's the reason why so many latch onto male handlers for protection.  It is unknown at this time if Samantha had such a companion.  when asked, Minneapolis VCU Investigator Simon Templeton said, "Her cell phone recovered at the scene has been thoroughly scanned and little evidence has been able to be gleaned off of it.  We suspect she was working her 'business' alone."

The Twin Cities Crime Blogger
Dexter L. Grant

Link to Guest of Honor Kindle ebook

What is the Minneapolis VCU?

As I start blogging about various high-level crimes right here in the Twin Cities, one of my information resources is the Minneapolis VCU.  This is no secret and don't think that everything is all hush-hush like they do in the movies.  I have other contacts too, but it got me wondering: what does VCU stand for?

VCU stands for Violent Crime Unit. The head honcho is Captain Lewis Mack and he has several investigators working in his division.  Their primary focus are violent crimes, typically felony level and on occasion they investigate gross misdemeanors too.

New investigators spend eight weeks at the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA, learning the latest innovations in crime scene analysis, offender profiling, and advances in investigation technology.  VCU is housed on the third floor of the Central Division Building, where they share office space with three other investigation units: PT (Property and Theft), TGTF (Terrorism and Gang Task Force), and SCI (Sex Crimes Investigations).

Since VCU will probably gain more of my attention, I will focus primarily on them.

That's all for now.  Stay tuned for more shortly.

Dexter L. Grant - AKA the Twin Cities Crime Blogger

Hello, welcome to my blog

My name is Dexter.  I'm from Chicago.

I'm a student at the U of M here in Minneapolis, and I'm starting this blog as a way to get me into the routine of writing.

As of yet, my major is undeclared, but I am either leaning towards Journalism or Creative Writing.  I figure with this blog, I can explore both.

When I was in my late teens, I was the victim of an unfortunate incident--okay, it was completely my fault, but I've owned up to it and want to help put right the many wrongs that I see.

I'll share more later.  My roommate just came in with a Domino's Pizza.  Pepperoni with extra cheese.  My favorite!

Dexter L. Grant - AKA the Twin Cities Crime Blogger