WPC Cox lay face down on the grey blanket on which she had just been raped. It had been folded lengthwise to afford her some protection from the hard concrete floor. She tested the handcuffs again. They were locked on far too tight for her to be able to slip either of her wrists out of them. The thin rope cut into her crossed ankles, which were draw up behind her, joined to her handcuffs by a short length of rope. She felt behind her for the knots, but they were out of reach. Alison tried to move her jaw and lips to loosen or dislodge the tape from her mouth. But it was hopeless. The tape didn’t give at all. Hardly a murmur escaped from her mouth through her wadded knickers and the layers of tape.
God, she thought, they’ve left me trussed up like a turkey. I’ll never get out of this. I could be tied up like this for hours. They might as well have just found some railway tracks to tie me to like the damsel in distress in the old films. At least they hadn’t locked her in the boot. That would have driven her insane. That was one plus. And she was still alive. She was glad they had allowed her to go to the toilet before they left. The thought of having to go again while she was bound and gagged like this and lying in her own urine for hours revolted her.
Alison rolled over on to her right side and slowly and awkwardly managed to raise herself up into a kneeling position, her hands pulled down towards her bound ankles. She looked around her at the rubbish strewn around the floor. If there was any broken glass or anything sharp she might be able to cut through the rope joining her hands and feet, and ease the growing pressure on her arms, legs and shoulders. She might even be able to get to the car and use the car radio, she thought. Or if she could free her feet she could walk to the road and try to stop a passing vehicle. But there was nothing. Just a few pieces of broken wood, some rusty nails, soil, dried leaves and old bits of cardboard. She eased herself back down on to the blanket on her stomach and tried to remain still. It was slightly more comfortable than kneeling on it.
Why had they tied her up like this? They could have just handcuffed her to the metal pillar with her hands in front of her to secure her. She remembered how she had been handcuffed to the police station flag pole on her birthday. They obviously wanted to give themselves as much time as possible to get away before she was found. They would find her sooner or later, but how long would she have to wait? Her pussy and thighs were still bruised and sore from the rape.
WPC Cox played over everything that had happened in her mind. She had to remember every detail of the men and their vehicle. Strangely, she could recall the registration number of the van from the tax disc she had been examining just before it happened. GBW181N. Alison tried to fix it in her mind. GBW181N. Golf Bravo Whisky 181 November. She kept on repeating it till it was engraved on her memory. That was important, particularly as she hadn’t seen the men’s faces. If they abandoned the van, they might leave fingerprints and other evidence behind them. And vehicles could be traced through previous owners.
Alison remembered the scraping over the rear offside wheel arch, and the dent in the front offside wing. She needed to fix every detail in her mind. She recalled their clothing and the first man’s bird tattoo on his hand. The second man had a tooth missing from his upper jaw. They were wearing balaclavas, but she had noticed the colour of their eyes. She tried to remember their accents and everything they had said. These details could be important.
Time passed. It was so quiet here. Just the sound of the birds. Despite everything that had happened and the growing discomfort in her limbs, shoulders and back, Alison started to feel drowsy. Her mind wandered. She thought about her parents and her boyfriend, John. She recalled her time on section and all the practical jokes they had played on her.
Alison’s thoughts returned to more recent events. She felt a sense of deep humiliation that they had been able to overpower her so easily and rape her., and shame at the way she had cooperated with her captors and tried to ingratiate herself with them to secure better treatment. She tried to think what else she could have done. But she was just so frightened when she saw the gun.
She seemed to have been here for ages, and wondered what time it was. Alison couldn’t check her watch with her hands secured behind her back. She managed to unfasten her watch strap and drop it in front of her. It was 3.05 p.m. They had been gone for two and a half hours. Cramp began to spread through her body. She could hardly move.
WPC Cox felt increasingly drowsy and slowly began to drift off to sleep. She woke up again some time later, but she realised she had lost all sense of time. It was darker outside now. She wriggled forward to check her watch again. It was nearly 5.45 p.m. She had been tied up for over five hours. Soon after she heard the faint sound of a car engine in the distance and a dog barking. Alison tried unsuccessfully to raise herself into a kneeling position again. She was just too stiff to move. She tried to scream through the gag, but only a barely audible sound emerged. Her skirt had ridden up her thighs.
Alison heard the sound of panting and padded feet moving towards her. She turned her head as far as she could and saw a large German Shepherd staring at her from a few feet away. The dog began barking loudly, and a dark figure appeared in the doorway. It was the dog handler, Dave Brownlee, and his dog, Rebel.
Dave Brownlee knelt over Alison and cut the short rope joining her bound feet to her handcuffs. She felt an immediate sense of relief, but a sharp pain rose up her back as her legs straightened. “We’ve been searching for you for hours, Alison,” he said. He helped her into a kneeling position on the blanket and gently began to peel back the layers of black tape wound round her mouth. “Christ, Alison, you’ve got a whole roll of tape round your mouth here.” He discarded the tape and plucked the wadded knickers from her mouth. Alison stretched her mouth and jaw and licked her dry lips, finally able to breathe through her mouth.
Dave Brownlee quickly cut the rope binding her ankles and unlocked her handcuffs. She stretched painfully and rubbed her wrists and ankles. Alison’s emotions overwhelmed her and she began to sob uncontrollably, burying her face in his chest. He hugged her close to him, “It’s okay, Alison,” he said. “It’s okay. It’s all over now. You’re safe now.”
“Oh, Dave, thank God you found me,” she sobbed. “I’ve been here for hours. They tied me up so tight. It was two men with guns in a white Marina van. They looked like terrorists. They raped me. I was so frightened. I thought they were going to kill me. There was nothing I could do.”
Dave Brownlee called up on the radio. “I’ve located WPC Cox,” he said. “The old Nissen huts off the tracks on the south side of the Haverhill Road. She was attacked by two armed men in a white Marina van. They stole her radio and left her tied up at the scene. Can I have some assistance here please.”
Dave Brownlee circulated the vehicle number and a description of the men as Alison calmed down and he was able to extract more information from her. He deliberately avoided mentioning the rape over the radio. He was aware that many people routinely listened in to police radio channels and he needed to be careful what he said. More units arrived at the scene, which was cordoned off. Alison was taken to hospital for examination as a rape victim.
To be continued.