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Need some help with a murder mystery

  1. Nov 5, 2005 #1
    Hey everyone,
    I was referred to this forum by CeeAnne, and I'm really hoping I can get some help. I have a series of clues for a murder mystery. There are 8 total clues, and all of them seem to point to different people who commited the crime. I'm stumped at the moment. The author of the clues says that everything is contained directly within the clues, and that there is no real need to speculate/use outside evidence. I know some of you here are very good with logic, and I need your help! I know she also had a philosophy major give her the idea of how to work the mystery, so if you are into philosophy you might also be able to help. Unfortunately, I cannot post the problem directly on the forum, because I had to earn the clues, and she therefore does not want them given away to everyone easily. I'd be happy to share the answer and problem once I'm allowed to so everyone and check it out. I would be able to easily give you the clues though if you PM me, and that way it's not public :)

    If you feel you could help, if you could PM me or post here, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks so much, and I look forward to some advice from the experts!
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 5, 2005 #2
    I would not call myself a master of logic, but please post the problem when you can, I would like to see it :smile:
  4. Nov 5, 2005 #3
    Would you like to take a run at helping me solve it?
  5. Nov 5, 2005 #4
    Sure, just pm me :smile:
  6. Nov 5, 2005 #5
    Dropped ya the PM :)
  7. Nov 15, 2005 #6
    mattmns will you post the question now?
  8. Nov 16, 2005 #7
    how do u Pm
  9. Dec 16, 2005 #8


    User Avatar

    One way to do it, is to click on the person's user name, and click PM this person.
  10. Dec 16, 2005 #9
    Sorry trib, I never noticed the thread. It has been quite a while, so I think it is safe to post it. Here it is:


    CLUE 1: (from the murderers perspective)
    We all have to do things we don't like, sometimes. I do mine lovingly. Like an artist. It's funny though, I considered her a masterpiece. I knew her though, better than her family, friends from highschool, or lovers. They probably couldn't describe the way she walked, or how her collarbone curved, and these things are infinitely more important than where she went to college.

    I am an artist. I sculpt my work after beautiful things.

    CLUE 2: (cops perspective)
    6 PM in the evening, with blue and red sirens wailing towards the murder scene. We knew we were going to have to deal with more paperwork. Another long night. But these things happen. I knew that the day my first day on the force. After 20 years though, you learn to separate yourself.

    "Mmm," my wife would nod, when I told her over dinner later. "What a shame. Such a young girl."

    That's how it is, and that's how people are. We're just as guilty though, discussing a dead girl over dinner and not feeling queasy as we take a second serving of steak.

    But that isn't how it panned out. That night I never actually went home, like I said, paperwork. I have to admit, for the first time in years, I was a bit creeped out. There was no blood, fine. The nutjob who did it was just careful. But the creepy part was how she was lying there. Every strand of yellow hair in its place, her feet and hands positioned comfortably, draped in pristine white sheets. The cleanliness of it all disturbed me most.

    CLUE 3: (boyfriend of the victims perspective)
    I miss my girlfriend. Going to sleep is impossible now. You know they found her in our bed? The sicko actually put her in our bed. I've been staying with my mom, I don't know what else to do. This one officer, Officer Riley, well he told me that it looked pre-meditated. What if the guy is coming after me next? What if it's someone I know? What if they don't catch the guy? Landlord tells me if I move out nobody is going to rent the place for months. Apartment 74 is cursed.

    Everyone I see though is a suspect. There is this creepy old guy down the hall, Donny or something, well I can't stand the guy. He paces at all hours of the night when everyones asleep, and I can hear the creaking. That's been keeping me awake too, the godawful creaking. It never used to bother me, but now it is like a drill to the head everytime he moves.

    He always looked at my girlfriend weird. If you ask me, they shouldn't be questioning normal people, because its someone like him that did it.

    CLUE 4: (officers perspective)
    The boyfriends a nervous guy. He came home that night, while we were searching the apartment. He demanded to know what we were doing, like any reasonable man would want to know. When we told him he broke down and cried, like any reasonable man would. But in his normal state of mind, he's like a nervous bunny. Too much black coffee, maybe. They had a nice place; modest and comfortable. The girl liked the color violet a lot. Good family and a lot of friends. Popular couple. Mostly because of the girl, though. Bunny's too chaotic.
    I like him though. He's easy to deal with, even with the anxious air, not like the neighbor who called in the murder. I heard a thump, she said, pointing dramatically to the girls apartment. She was one of those neighbors that enjoyed this sort of thing.
    "Mmm," she would say over dinner with her husband. "What a shame. Such a nice girl."
    I could picture her telling her friends excitedly what happened, stretching the story a bit more each time. "Yes," she would whisper devilishly. "The poor dear was torn to bits."

    CLUE 5: (neighbors perspective)
    The cops came rushing in like on TV, it was amazing! But don't tell anyone that, I'd hate to sound like I was glad it happened. But it's such a thrill! Sometimes I think I should have been a cop! She was a lovely girl though, always bringing me my mail and talking with me between this, that and everything else that had to be done. Busy kids. My husband is a bore, but don't tell anyone that either. Our kids are grown with families of their own, and dear Herbert is retired. But that doesn't mean our lives have to be! So yes, I admit that I find excitement in this sort of thing, only because I think I am a great detective. If the cops in this town had any merit, they'd ask for my opinion!
    "Mrs. Foster," the handsome O'Riley would say, "we don't know who killed the pretty young girl."
    I knew they would need my help. "I have a sense about these things," I would respond.
    Lowering his voice he would whisper, "Yes, we know. That's why we need your help." My help? I am very flattered, Officer.
    "Yes," I would say confidently. "I know who did it." Oh Herbert, who knew you had it in you.

    CLUE 6: (officers perspective)
    "Listen lady, we can't field your calls about this thing all day. Our officers are working on it." That old bag Mrs. Foster that always wears the ratty green dress won't stop calling us with a new suspect everyday. Yes, Mrs. Foster, we get it, you watch too much Law and Order. The Queen of Gossip telling us how to do our jobs, I'm not surprised.
    But, I will admit we are running out of leads. Our first one was naturally the girls family. Nice bunch, but deadends. Not that I'd want it to be her direct family, but this old mans getting a little tired pounding the pavement all day. Too young for retirement, too old to keep seeing people kill eachother. Bunny is an interesting fellow but we have nothing on him. He can't sleep anymore. Shame.
    We're going to be looking into the guy down the hall more. It's a stretch, but he makes everyone feel a little on edge.

    CLUE 7: (Donny's perspective)
    You wanna know who I think killed the broad? If you ask me, it's the establishment. What I mean is, the city cops are a bit rough around the edges. Nothing is as it seems, everythings in limbo, kind of getting mixed up in this gray area. So look at the details, gather your own thoughts. You know, people call me crazy, but I'm not. I see things that go on, I know a lot more than anyone here. You gotta look.
    It ain't the boyfriend, have you seen that guy? Then there is her family. They loved their little girl, a family like that don't want their little girl to be hurt. Mrs. Foster is pretty crazy, last I heard she thinks her husband did it. What woman stays with a murderin' husband, I don't know. Heard the girls body was clean except some incisions, like a pro did it. Most people don't know this, but I'm a med school dropout. If they asked me too, I'd take a look. Tell 'em whether it was an amateur or not.
    But listen, I got something that nobody else knows, because I'm the only one who is roamin' the halls all night. I can't tell the cops because things happen when you rat out on their buddies. Maybe you can help me out. Listen carefully, the cop knew the girl. They knew eachother before he started workin' on her case. Boyfriend works graveyard shift right? Hardworking guy. The murdered girl all alone in her apartment, waiting for her tough cop hero to come and visit her. But only on thursdays, only on thursdays at 3 AM. I don't know why, so don't ask me. Ain't my job to know.

    CLUE 8: (officers perspective)
    Dead leads, not sure where to go from here. Toughest case I have had in all my years on the force. It makes me red with anger just thinking about it. I feel so out of control. Nobody should die like that. He did a good job, I'll give him that. It makes me sick saying it, but sometimes these things happen. I learned that years ago.
    I'm getting a little desperate though.
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2005
  11. Dec 18, 2005 #10
    I have a question. Is the 'cop' the same person as the 'officer'? If not, what's with the "Mmm. What a shame. Such a young girl" coincidence?

    I only ask because I've gotten to a point where I really need to know the answer to those questions, if I'm going to solve this, so if anyone can tell me, 'twould be great!
  12. Dec 25, 2005 #11
    Clues please.
  13. Jan 3, 2006 #12
    Has everyone dropped this? I want to know the answer and would be happy to colab with people (just PM me).
  14. Jan 3, 2006 #13
    I googled the answer. I don't think the "intended" answer makes enough sense, and doesn't use "murder mystery" logic to come to a good conclusion, but instead uses the particular presentation of the clues. IE, if we inserted a new clue, or even a sentence which used numbers or colors, regardless of whose perspective it was from, and regardless of what it said, the 'answer' would change.

    Link to a thread where it's explained:

    I preferred the answers of the cop's wife or the boyfriend's mother, because they were unobvious suspects-- you just didn't have enough information about them to make any sort of convincing arguments.

  15. Jan 3, 2006 #14
    Based on that argument, I would vote to acquit.

    I thought it might be Donny because he said "I know a lot more than anyone here." which sort of echos the words of the murderer (but the DA would not have known that, since then he would have known the murderer). Also Donny had been to med school and the incisions were 'professional'. But I wouldn't like to be the DA trying to sell that argument either.
  16. Jan 4, 2006 #15
    No doubt about it. I still don't understand how 74 points out a murderer. In fact I'm kind of angry because this was a complete waste of my time. Not only does the riddle have a trivial answer that wouldn't hold in any court room, anywhere in the world, but the answer doesn't even elude to a murdered. The mystery still exists. You can't give a riddle asking "who stole the pie" and say that the answer is 42.

    This is very frustrating because I thought it was a riddle in which you must use your deductive skills instead of looking for catches. I hate those types of riddles and I would have never given this one any thought had I known it was of that type.

    It seemed like it had such potential, alas it was a flop!

    P.S. The riddle was worded poorly. There were several inconsistencies which made one think that he/she were on the right track, that's the only reason I kept at it. I'm honestly very disappointed!
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2006
  17. Jan 4, 2006 #16
    Yeah, the only way in which this sort of clue would be considered would be if the clues were carefully worded, all by the murderer. IE, if the murderer left intentional clues that would give some hint of his identity. Using other people's stories to a riddle requires that they be part of the crime.

    It did look pretty promising, especially once I realized that Bunny was staying at his *mother's*, yet was still hearing Donny's footsteps. Meaning that his mother lived in the same building, and cast her as a suspect. Very subtle. Would've been very subtle to also include something like... I dunno... "Bunny had followed in his parents' footsteps and was a surgeon, often working the late shift." Or something like that. Discreetly pointing at his mother as a doctor, and then throwing in some other comment about, I dunno, Mrs. Riley talking about another tenant, who we might deduce was also Bunny's mother. Then presto, the mother's got the means (doctor) and the motive (victim was cheating on her son).

    Admittedly, as I read the explanation I began to be suspicious when I read the clues like "Add it up" and "It's easy as 1, 2, 3". But alas, a let down.

  18. Jan 5, 2006 #17
    The boyfriend lives in apartment 74.

    Tell Douglas Adams that.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2006
  19. Jan 13, 2006 #18
    Oh that's just crap!
    The colour thing is just a rip off from Sixth Sense and employeed in an incredibly unskillful manner. It's not intuitive in any sense what so ever. I had thought it may have been the boyfriend but only because he seemed to be acting like a skitz.
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