Excerpt: "There were still rumors about the way [Vincent] treated …"
Vincent Fischer was born to Tom and Catherine Fischer on September 15, 1967. The Fischer family owned a small farm in Yocona, a community just outside of Oxford. Tom raised some cattle and grew a few crops, and the farm always struggled to make ends meet.
Vincent's school career was unremarkable. He wasn't popular and wasn't active in any sports. Vincent was just one of the country kids on the periphery of school culture, and he frequently missed school when his father needed help on the farm. He did well enough in his classes to stay out of any real trouble, but in no way did he excel. He graduated with a solid C average.
After high school graduation, Vincent joined the Army and was shipped to Fort Jackson, South Carolina for basic training. In the Army, Vincent enjoyed being a part of something. For the first time in his life, he got attention. He liked the uniform, and he liked the idea of doing something good.
After completing his stint in the Army, Vincent returned to Oxford where he joined the sheriff's department. People around Oxford joked that Vincent was the stereotypical redneck cop. "Some of these rednecks join the police force, get them some mirror sunglasses, and walk around the square with their hand cocked on their gun like they own the world," one old man used to laugh. Vincent developed a reputation as a tough cop, one who was not about to let you get by with just a warning.
About two years into his time as a police officer, Vincent married a local girl, Beverly Millward. Soon after that, a daughter was born. The family relationship was strained by the amount of time that Vincent spent on duty, and he and his wife often fought. Not to mention, there were rumors around town about Vincent being overly rough when he frisked women and about his straying hands.
About ten years ago, Vincent injured his back when his cruiser flipped over driving out to College Hill. The doctors told him he would be plagued with chronic back pain for the rest of his life. Plus, Vincent could no longer pass the physical for the police force, so he signed up for the office life of a parole officer. Bev hoped that he would settle down and their home life would improve, which it did for a while. Vincent kept more regular working hours and was frequently at home.
However, there were still rumors about the way he treated female cases. At one point, he was even suspended without pay. Vincent swore to Bev that it was all lies, and he promised her he would do all he could to make sure that he didn't get in that situation again. He started making secretaries sit in on all his consultations with female clients, and he always kept the door open. Vincent told Bev that he was taking all these precautions so that the women wouldn't be able to lie about him again.
But when Andrea Stover was assigned to him, he told his secretary that she could keep typing. "It's okay, Laura. You've got enough to do. It'll be all right," he said as he closed the door.