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Daily Riddle: Who Killed the Writer?

Junie Sihlangu
Jul 03, 2021
02:30 P.M.
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Sometimes people think they’re quite clever and get away with murder, as in the following case about a columnist who was stabbed to death. Can you guess who his killer was?



Detective Edmond Nickles looked around the dingy and heavily cluttered apartment of the famous columnist Todd MacMillan who had been stabbed to death. The writer’s agent, Steven Pearl, was the one who called the police.

Pearl called 911 when Todd failed to submit his column to the newspaper for the week. The aging columnist’s body hung over his manual typewriter and there was a paper in the machine.

A close-up of a man in a suit with his hands folded against his chest | Photo: Pixabay/Goumbik


Nickles glanced at the paper and realized it was the writer’s column. Todd’s head rested on the keyboard where it seemed he’d typed random keys with the last line reading:

"49t34 w5qgg3e j3."

An open book with a key and a flower lying on top of the pages | Photo: Pixabay/suju-foto


Pearl explained to the detective that his late client had preferred using a typewriter instead of a computer. Being able to pound on the outdated machine had been therapeutic to the victim.

Todd’s agent had given Detective Nickles a list of people who were suspects that the policeman questioned. Three of the people stood out for the detective during questioning.

A couple in formal wear with the wife holding a bouquet of flowers as they hold hands | Photo: Pixabay/StockSnap



Karen MacMillan and the late victim had been separated for almost two years now. They initially had a peaceful separation but off-late, things had become tense as they fought over assets.

The columnist was willing to give his estranged wife their mansion and a huge lump sum payment. However, he refused to give her the excessive alimony she demanded from him.

A black-and-white close-up image of a woman looking sad | Photo: Pixabay/Małgorzata Tomczak


Karen was still living in the mansion and had a more than adequate pre-alimony settlement. She’d also moved on with her life with her new, younger, and much more attractive boyfriend.


Pam Gridder was Todd’s new girlfriend and she was clearly high maintenance. She cried when questioned by the detective while wearing her designer dress and carrying her designer bag.

An arrogant rich man wearing sunglasses while blowing out cigarette smoke | Photo: Pixabay/Sammy-Williams


Gridder held looked drop-dead gorgeous (excuse the pun) in her diamond and emerald jewelry and a Rolex watch. Nickles suspected that her grief was more for the loss of her “gravy train” than for her boyfriend.


The last person Nickles questioned was Todd’s brother, John MacMillan. The late writer actually stole Gridder from John and the younger man had a huge grudge against his famous sibling.

A police squad car with its lights on in an urban area | Photo: Pixabay/Free-Photos


He even blatantly confessed to the detective that he was glad Todd was dead. John even hinted that he might try to get Gridder back now that she was back on the dating market.

Nickles took some time investigating the case and quickly resolved it. Do you have any idea who the actual killer was or can you guess?

A frightened man standing in an open area with a face mask on | Photo: Pixabay/Sean Corcoran



Pearl, the agent, was arrested after Nickles had a closer look at the message left on the column that Todd was working on. He realized that the last line was code for "Roger stabbed me” or 49t34 w5qgg3e j3.

The writer managed to type the message after the stabbing occurred, but his fingers were positioned one line higher on the keyboard when he typed it. Todd wanted to fire Pearl and the agent stabbed him in a fit of rage.

Source: Braingle.