|Game:||City of Heroes MMO|
|Real Name:||Edward T. Vance|
|Known Aliases:||"The Trust", DDA Vance|
|Occupation:||Deputy District Attorney for Paragon City|
|Place of Birth:||Buffalo, NY|
|Base of Operations:||Paragon City, RI|
|Guardians of the Dawn Spotlight, The Guardian Powers, Furia and the Guardians|
|keen mind, steel determination|
"The Trust" Edward T. Vance is a Deputy District Attorney for Paragon City. He was also a longtime member of the covert organization known as Shadowborn before it became absorbed into the much larger Bilderburg Alliance.
Edward Vance got his law degree in New York City University and passed the Bar Exam in 1997. He first worked with the District Attorney's Office in New York City, but eventually discovered that there was little room for advancement there. In 1999, he took a job in Paragon City thinking that he would make a name for himself with a much smaller pool of prosecutors.
At first, Vance was a straight-arrow prosecutor, bringing in modest convictions, but also seeing many of his convictions overturned on appeal. But then a corrupt former prosecutor took him under his wing and showed him how the system really worked.
Vance discovered that in a city full of superheroes, the rules are allowed to be bent a little bit. A little leeway is given for the zealousness of street vigilantes. City officials don't care about HOW someone is convicted, just that they are. Making deals to get a conviction is a lot better than getting evidence and trying to convince 12 people of it, especially when the evidence is shaky or contaminated. Most superheroes, after all, don't care about evidence or the handling of a crime scene.
Vance also found out that the best way to sustain those convictions on appeal is to have both popular and political influence. He first became known for his outstanding conviction rate, even though most of those involved double-dealings, making promises for lighter sentences that could not be kept. He further advanced his political influence by helping out with several federal agencies when they needed help in making a case stick.
In December of 2003, a 19-year old college student named Hanna Gordon was kidnapped and assaulted. Although police suspected the assailant was a mob financial adviser named Radomil Petras, Vance was asked by a certain federal organization to keep Petras out of the investigation and to frame someone else for the crime who was in the elite club at that time.
Vance singled out a young Alex Wentworth because of his celebrity status as a hedonistic "Trust Fund Baby". The unnamed federal agency provided Vance the evidence needed to get an indictment, and Wentworth was arrested.
Almost immediately, Vance became known as the "Trust-Buster, promising to go after all so-called "Trust Fund Babies" whom he accused of treating Paragon City like their own playground.
Vance offered Wentworth several "deals" to try to get an admission of guilt from him. The young man rejected the deals, believing that he would be vindicated in the trial. Vance told Wentworth that there would never BE a trail as long as he refuses to take part in the deal. He then used his growing influence in the judicial system to postpone the trial indefinitely, citing witness tampering and hostile publicity. He also arranged to have Hanna Gordon secretly institutionalized so she would never testify in court.
In the years that followed, Vance cashed in on his "Trust-Buster" nickname, eventually referring himself as The Trust. He tried to investigate another "Trust Fund Baby" by the name of Justin Sinclair, trying to link him to the mercenary team known as Wyvern but that quickly became a dead end. Still, his public campaign to target "the rich elites" propelled him to the position of Deputy District Attorney.
Meanwhile, the Wentworth family increased their pressure to vindicate Alex. They found Hanna Gordon and freed her from her medicated state. In April of 2006 they were able to get her to testify in court that Alex was not the man who kidnapped and attacked her. Vance had no choice but to have the charges dropped.
Vance is still serving in the District Attorney's Office, although he is now concerned about efforts to expose his more shady arrangemnets, especially in light of Wentworth's association with the Paragon Libertarian Society and their efforts to expose corruption in city government.
During the two-part "Limelight" story Vance used deceit and an illegal use of hero equipment to lure Midnight Arachnia to Paragon Police Headquarters. There he accused her of being a spy for Arachnos and offered her a deal in which she would publicly reveal her identity and plead guilty, or he would charge her with treason, which carries the death penalty, and force her to reveal her identity to the public. When Midnight Arachnia invoked a rule that prohibited such exposure, he countered that he was recently made a special prosecutor for the Department of Justice, and that the rule no longer applied to him.
Although Midnight Arachnia managed to escape being arrested, Vance continued with her prosecution on the charge of treason en abstentia. This drew the ire of many legal communities, although they did not offer to stand up in her defense for fear of being prosecuted as well.
It was revealed that his office personally controlled the case from start-to-finish, including taking custody of the jewelry store robbers that Midnight Arachnia had arrested that day, and staging a raid of the M.A.G.I. office in City Hall to seize all of her case-related information.
Upon being confronted by MidKnight X and warned of new evidence that would clear her, Vance would quickly move to drop all charges against Midnight Arachnia and officially clear her name.
In Issue #14, it was revealed that Paragon City was suffering from the lack of a District Attorney, going through five such appointments in six months. Without a head prosecutor, the responsibilities of that office was shared among the various Deputy District Attorneys.
One such responsibility was serving on the Supergroup Oversight Committee, a committee of various Paragon City leaders that would meet once a month to go over any pertinent issues regarding registered superhero organizations. Vance quickly assumed responsibility of representing the DA's office.
In a meeting with city leaders, including Vanguard leader Lady Grey, Police Chief Clayton, and legendary superhero Statesman, it was announced that Captain Paragonna would be placed on administrative leave from the Paragon Police Department and would not be able to serve as overall leader of the Guardians of the Dawn. Vance immediately cast doubt upon the next hero in line for that position, Midnight Arachnia, bringing up the events from "Limelight" to suggest that the public still does not trust her. Although his suggestion to place the group under the control of an outside administrator was quickly shot down by Statesman, he did have a hand in the eventual appointment of Maximus Rex as leader of the Guardians.
District Attorney Election
(See also District Attorney Election of 2011)
Despite his numerous claims to the contrary, Vance has longed to become District Attorney for the city. This longing became apparent after months of sharing the responsibilities of the vacated position. Despite his popularity and his political connections, though, city officials were not eager to offer Vance the position.
When it was announced that there would be a special election to fill the position, Vance made sure he was the first person to announce his intentions. It is believed that his connections and popularity as a "passionate" prosecutor would make him a shoe-in.
However, he did not realize that the populist support would go to one of his former victims, Alex Wentworth himself.
Connection to Shadowborn
His initial connection to the Shadowborn organization can be best described as an unwilling accomplice. When he was contacted by Lord Geddy in Issue #5 he did not want to be associated with the organization again. His cooperation with the reorganized Shadowborn, however, ensured that he would be clear of all ethics charges against him. He would later embrace his connection during the Limelight story, even using it to give himself a temporary position with the federal government.
He was an active member of the reorganized Shadowborn group before it became absorbed into the Bilderburg Alliance.
His Shadowborn confirmation codeword was "Hangover".
Powers and Abilities
Vance's primary ability is Martial Arts. He holds a black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
His secondary ability is Willpower. He is quick to admit that his force of will has been his best asset.
Vance primarily relies on his legal authority as an agent of the government instead of physical activity. He does not see himself as being evil or corrupt, but rather as someone who does all that he can for the job... and also for his own name.
Note: Although his considered a hero and operates in Paragon City, make no mistake, he is FAR from heroic.