Here you will find a few short tales that will test your ability to interpret information, gather data and solve the crime!!! You will try to determine how, where, or why the perpetrator has make a critical mistake, thus exposing the guilty party.
#1 The Case of the Archaeological Dig
"I've finally earned my place as assistant curator of the museum", said Bob Hobbie to Max, the chief administrator of the Belgra Archeological Museum. "I moved West of the Pakistani dig site and we've just unearthed some wonderful coin artifacts."
"Why did you start digging in a new location?" asked Max.
"One of the local natives told me that, for many generations, his family had passed down a legend of a lost village and he found a map among his father's things," said Bob. "His father recently passed away", he added. "The native followed the map and led me to this site on the condition that if we discovered anything of value he would be paid one thousand dollars", explained Bob.
"And what is it that you found buried,?" asked Max.
"It's just terrific," exclaimed Bob, "we found 3 gold coins of various sizes dated 400 B.C., and after properly dusting them off I found them to be in excellent condition." "I quickly paid the native to complete our verbal contract and keep him from trying to claim a portion of the discovery," concluded Bob. After considering for a few moments, Max told Bob that when he returns home he should look for another job!! Why?
#2 The Case of the Murdered Wife
Detective Palumbo had just finished examining the body of Debbie Layne which was lying on couch in her plush living room.
"Mrs. Layne was hit on the back of her head 3 or 4 times with the butt of that pistol," the sleuth said.
The .45 lay on the floor near the body. Sheriff Hobbs was dusting the weapon for fingerprints.
"I've telephoned her husband at his office and only told him to come home, I dislike breaking bad news. Will you do it?", the sheriff said.
"I'll do it," said Palumbo as he watched the body being removed from the scene. Then he took a seat in a lounge chair to wait for Mr. Layne.
The Ambulance drove away just as Mr. Layne arrived. He came into the living room and asked, "Where's Debbie? What's happened?"
"I'm sorry to have to tell you that she was murdered about 3 hours ago," said Palumbo. "Your cleaning lady found the body and called the sheriff."
"I can't find any fingerprints on this gun," said the sheriff. "I'll send it to the lab."
Mr. Layne's face flushed as he got angry and said, "please find the fiend that clubbed Debbie to death, I'll put up a twenty-five thousand dollar reward!"
"Save your money," said Hobbs. "The murderer won't be that hard to find." Why?
#3 The Case of the Knife Wielding Gangster
Detective Hobbs found the notorious gangster Scarface Joe found lying face down on the bar room floor. A bullet had entered his left ear and must have lodged somewhere in his brain as there was no exit wound.
The bullet matched the gun that was owned by Bernie the Bull, another hoodlum, and Joe's rival gang member. It was well known that they hated each other but frequented the same bar.
Bernie said that he was the only customer in the bar when Joe came in and started yelling at him. "He was like a madman," said Bernie. "He pulled out a knife and started coming at me. I shot him in self-defense as he charged head-on at me swinging that knife." Joe's body lying close by still had the knife clutched in his left hand. "He just wouldn't stop coming at me," exclaimed Bernie. "I had to shoot, I had no choice."
The only witness was the bartender, another shady character, who agreed with Bernie's story.
Detective Hobbs just smiled and said, "you boys will have time to think of something better than that story on the way to the slammer." Why didn't he believe them?
#4 The Case of the Late Night Suicide
Detective Hobbs was on his way to the big Detroit auto show when he decided to visit his old friend, Dr. Sam. At Sam's home he was shocked to learn that just two days earlier his long time friend had hanged himself.
"Sam was in excellent health and spirits when I heard from him last week," Hobbs told the sheriff. "I can't believe he committed suicide."
"But he did---I investigated it myself," said the sheriff. "Here's how it all happened."
"Pete Porter, Sam's manservant, was returning to the house late that night when he spotted a light in the attic. As Porter got out of his car, he saw through the open attic window Sam knotting a rope around his neck. The other end was tied to a rafter. Then he saw Sam calmly kick away the small stool he was standing on, and that was the end.
"Porter found the house locked. He had forgotten his key;
so he went to the neighbor to call me."
"He repeated to me exactly what I've just told you," said the sheriff.
"When I arrived at Sam's house, I had to force the front door open." Porter and I then ran up the three floors to the attic. Sam was dead. The coroner has no doubt that death was from hanging."
"The attic floor was clear except for the little stool that lay overturned by the door," concluded the sheriff.
"Let's go out to the house," said Hobbs. "From everything you've told me about Porter's story, I can tell you he's lying!" How did Hobbs know that Porter was lying?
#5 The Case of the Gold Digger
Detective Palumbo had just ordered a drink at the bar in the Tahoe motel when a young man with sun-bleached golden hair and tanned cheeks sat on the stool beside him.
After ordering a scotch and water, the sunburned man nodded toward the gaming tables. "My name is John Patmos," he said genially. "It's great to be back in civilization and hear people and money talking out loud."
Palumbo introduced himself. "I guess you've been out in the desert?"
"Yeah, I got back yesterday," said Patmos. "Washed the dust out of my ears, had a barber shave off my seven months of whiskers and trim my hair. Then I bought a whole wardrobe on credit. All I had to do was show my assay report. Boy am I going to celebrate."
"You found gold?," inquired Palumbo.
"Yes sir. Hit the big load." Patmos stroked his bronzed chin thoughtfully; then in a low voice he said, "if I can find a backer, I'll take enough out of those hills to buy ten pleasure palaces like this one. Of course, I'm not trying to interest you. But, if you know someone who'd like to get in on a sure thing, let me know. I'm staying in room 510. Can't give out the details here, you understand."
"I understand," said Palumbo, "that you'd better improve your story if you want to sucker someone into a deal that's worthless." How did Palumbo know the story was fictitious?
#6 The Case of the Untimely Blackmailer
"I'm telling you, Hobbs," said John Dough, "inheriting the Dough millions has had some nerve racking moments. Do you remember Frack, the butler?"
"A smiling and mild mannered chap," said Hobbs
"That's the guy. I fired him after inheriting the house in the Hamptons. Well, two days ago he came to my office and demanded one hundred thousand dollars. He claimed to have been in the study when my father drew up another will, naming his brother sole heir."
"You believed him?"
"I confess the news was quite a shocker. Dad and I had an argument over Marilyn sometime during the last week of June. Dad opposed the marriage, and it seemed possible that he had cut me off."
"Frack said he has this second will, which he said would be worth a lot more than the blackmail money he was asking for. He said the new will was dated June 31, only one day newer than the old will, but it would be legally recognized he claimed."
"You didn't pay him, I hope?" asked Hobbs.
"I paid---with my boot to the seat of his pants."
"Perfect," agreed Hobbs. "Imagine trying to peddle a story like that!? Why did they decide not to pay Frack?