Blood and Sympathy: Prologue

Prologue from Blood and Sympathy
By Lori L. Clark

(Unedited version -- subject to editing.)

Summer 2008

Identical twins, Brogan and Braden Sayer, have more in common than their genetics.

Both ended up in juvenile detention at the age of twelve for a crime state prosecutor believes the brothers committed together.

The boys, the media dubbed as the "Sayer Slayers," were taken into custody in early 2008 for setting the fire that resulted in the death of their stepfather, Jonas Gingerich.

Brogan Sayer was found guilty of setting the fire that resulted in the man's death, and was sent to juvenile detention where he will remain until the age of eighteen. An earlier attempt to determine whether or not Braden Sayer acted alongside his twin brother ended in a mistrial.

Lawyers for Braden must now prove that their client was not involved in the actual plot carried out by Brogan.

"From our position, Braden was not present when the fire was started," said Victor Helms, who, alongside fellow attorney William Talbot, is representing Braden.

While Helms admits that his client, Braden Sayer, has been in and out of trouble with the law in the past -- for petty crimes -- the attorney asserts that it is twin brother Brogan who is solely responsible for setting the fire.

"Brogan is the proverbial evil twin," Helms said. "Not Braden."

"Brogan has always been the aggressive one, the ringleader. Whereas Braden was always more impressionable, he idealized his brother. Braden's more of a follower," Talbot agreed.

Talbot said Braden continues to insist that he did nothing wrong.

"He says he loves Brogan but then adds, 'We're brothers by blood, yes, but what he did was wrong. I'm afraid of what he's capable of sometimes,'" Helms said.

Braden is currently being held in a separate, undisclosed location from his brother while he awaits a new trial, which is scheduled to begin next week.

Braden's lawyer, Helms, said that he believes his client has a harder time proving his innocence because they are twins.

"It's a much harder case because he's a twin," Helms said. "His whole life, he's been pulled into his brother's shadow because they look alike."

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Lori L. Clark

Lori L. Clark currently resides in Hazelwood, MO with three rescue dogs. When Lori isn't listening to the voices in her head, waiting for the next creative inspiration to strike, she also loves to read, run, paint pet portraits and save dogs. Email Lori at

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