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More ways to get Braingle...

Rich Stiff

Mystery teasers are little stories where you need to figure out what happened based on the given clues.

 

Puzzle ID:#49562
Fun:**** (3.22)
Difficulty:*** (3)
Category:Mystery
Submitted By:JimShorts*us****

 

 

 



"The town's richest man was killed late last night in a shocking murder," the reporter exclaimed from the television across the room. "Chief Graham tells us that the police are carefully investigating everything and everyone, but they have no lead suspect yet."
Chief Graham let out a sigh as he looked out the window at the reporter and the large crowd still gathered outside. "Isn't there anything better to do in this town than hang around a crime scene all day?"
"No sir," answered Detective Jefferson. "Just the bowling alley, but it's really lame."
"My nephew runs the bowling alley."
"That's right, sir! And what a lovely bowling alley it is! Fantastic...pins."
"Will you just go over the facts with me one more time, detective?"
"Well, we found Mr. Hampton's body in the deep freezer after the mailman, Chuck, called us this morning to report his suspicion that something was wrong. Normally a frozen body would be good news for us. I mean, not GOOD news, may he rest in peace! Not that I'm not happy to finally have a good case to work on! I love my job and all..."
"Get on with it Jefferson."
"I just mean I'd think a frozen body would be helpful, since freezing preserves the body and the evidence so well. But unfortunately we just can't seem to find any evidence here. He appears to have been hit in the head with a blunt object, but other than that, there's not much we can tell. We've checked the house for clues, but nothing appears to be out of place. Whoever did this was careful. We've interviewed all the people that seem to have any contact with him, his son Don, his daughter Jessica, and of course, Chuck the mailman."
"I know it's been a long day and we'd all like to go home and get some rest, but I feel like we're missing something. I want to talk to everyone one more time," Chief Graham said.

"My dad has more money than anyone in this stupid town! Anyone could have a motive to kill him, surely you don't think I did it!" said Don Hampton with a look of anger and annoyance. "My dad and I got along fine! When I came over for dinner last month he told me he was proud of me for starting my own business just like he did."
"Didn't you start your business with a huge loan that he gave you?"
"Well, yeah. But that doesn't mean it wasn't hard!"
"Did you come over often to see him?" asked detective Jefferson.
"Yeah, every couple of weeks or so. Maybe once a month. A couple of times a year. Hey, we'd see each other more often, but you know what a hermit he is. He never leaves the house, so I was the one who had to make all the effort. If you ask me, I deserve a son-of-the-year award!"

"I JUST CAN'T BELIEVE HE'S GONE!" wailed Jessica Hampton through one of her fits of tears which only seemed to come while she was being questioned. "HE MEANT SO MUCH TO ME!"
"When was the last time you saw your father?"
"Well, I haven't seen him in a while. But I just talked to him on the phone last Saturday."
"And he didn't mention anything about being murdered soon?" Jefferson asked.
Chief Graham sighed. "Great work, Detective."
"Thanks chief!"
"Um, no. He sounded fine," Jessica continued. "Look, I'm sure you're thinking I had a motive to kill my father, since I'll probably inherit a lot of money now, but I bet Don will inherit the same amount as me! Plus Don owes - or owed - dad a bunch of money that he borrowed to start his business. So he has a bigger motive than me! HE should be your suspect!"

"Wow, the love in this family is amazing. Let's see what the mailman has to say."

"I'm used to his mail piling up in the mailbox, since he doesn't like to leave his house, but every now and then I'll have a package for him. Since he does all his shopping online, he's always eager to get his packages, so when I have one he always answers the door!" Chuck insisted. "I know it's not much to go on, but when he didn't come to the door this morning, I just had a really bad feeling that something was wrong."
"Have you noticed anything else lately? Any other suspicious activity?"
"No, not that I can think of. Sorry"

The chief sat down with a sigh. "This is just great. We have a reclusive victim who hardly ever makes contact with anyone, no clues, plenty of motives, no witnesses, and a lousy detective."
"Sounds tough, chief!"
"It is, Jefferson. It is."
The chief was just going launch into a new stream of complaints, when a thought occurred to him. He stood up suddenly. "Wait a minute! This may not hold up in court, but I sure know who we should be looking into!"
"You shouldn't end your sentences with a preposition, chief."
"Jefferson, I will literally kick you in the head."
"Sorry chief."
"Someone said something very revealing. I have a hunch that I may just be wrapping up this case sooner than I thought!"

Who accidentally alerted Chief Graham to aim the investigation in their direction?



Answer

"Who has been your source for information on this case?" Chief Graham asked news reporter Sheila Rivers.
"What, do you not remember talking to me? I've gotten all my info from you. Which hasn't been much, I have to say," replied Ms. Rivers impatiently.
"Right. Have you gotten any more details from anyone else?"
"No, only what you've given me. Why, do you have more for me?"
"Yes. We have a lead suspect. Do you remember what you reported earlier this evening? That the town's richest man was murdered late last night?"
"Of course."
"How late?"
"Well...Oh. Rats."
"Rats indeed. The last time anyone had any contact with the victim that we know of was last Saturday, and the time of death is impossible to determine due to Mr. Hampton's body being preserved in the freezer and his tendency to let his mail pile up. So the best estimate we have for the time of the murder is some time between Saturday and this morning when the body was found. But somehow you've determined a much more specific time of death. When I heard you say that...well, a little while after I heard you say that, I realized that either you or your source knows way more than an innocent person should. And now you've told me that it's you! You might as well confess, because let's face it, this story has gone on long enough already."
"Alright, fine. Do you know how hard it is to be a reporter in this stupid, boring town!? I'm so SICK of having nothing more important to report on than the high school's class president elections, or this year's dog petting contest. It was DRIVING ME CRAZY! I was DYING for a real story! Then I realized...why should I be the one to die?"

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