Hot Dog! The Fruit of the Poisonous Tree

(Or how I found a plot point with everything on it!)

Photo by Caleb Oquendo

One of the main plot points of my new novel, Forgive Us Our Trespasses, concerns my heroine, Brooke Burrell-Morton’s attempts to clear her name of a murder she did not commit by extra-legal means. The prosecutors and the cops were satisfied that they had their murderess – her. So, they ceased looking any further for the killer of an abusive father. Brooke had visited him in the afternoon of the night he was killed to let him know she was watching him. That encounter didn’t go well. It was all Brooke could do to restrain herself from utilizing her training and skills as the most decorated operative in America’s service, retired, and take a deep breath and walk away.

But the press and the DA, eager to get a good story and a conviction, pursued only her. Leaving her just one alternative; find the real killer. To do this she and her dear close friends from her old unit, band together and go deeper than even the FBI could and find not only the killer but unravel an international conspiracy to kill millions. All garnered without the benefit of a search warrant. Meaning, inadmissible in court.

Okay, so how did I come up with this? I was settling a debate whether you can only call it a frankfurter if it came out of Frankfurt Germany, that’s why Oscar Myer and everyone else only calls them, Franks, to avoid any trademark infringement. Enter google. The Weiner controversy went unanswered because I was struck by another search result: Mr. Justice Frankfurter, a judge who is credited for coining the phrase, the fruit of the poisonous tree. It is a term I heard many times before and I knew sometimes it led to some very nasty, evil killers and rapists getting off scot-free. I thought, how odd? An oddity being the wellspring of authoring a different new idea, I quickly realized I could explore that legal abyss by putting Brooke in it and helping her find a way to not only get justice but mete some out.  I had found one of the thru lines of my next novel, the sequel to my number one best-seller, Give Us This Day.  Hot Dog!