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The Solution to the Case


The Assignment Letter from the FBI states the goals for your investigation: (1) determine how the victims were targeted, and (2) uncover the identity of the killer.  Careful investigation will also reveal the depraved motive of the murderer.



The serial killer’s victims all attended a Freak Show event. Leah Spencer and Camila Silva both appear in an evidence photo in the front row of the audience for the Freak Show stage show on October 16. During the investigation, a third victim is also revealed who was killed in Port St. James. A handwritten note in the case file reveals a website address: The password is the number that was written in blood at Leah Spencer’s crime scene: 500. On Stanton’s web page, he reveals that Dombrowski was murdered on Oct. 2 in Port St. James in similar fashion as the Forrest City victims. An All-Access pass to the Freak Show was found in the victim’s bedroom. A review of the victim’s credit card statement revealed that she attended the Freak Show on the night of October 1. 



The homicide reports for both Camila Silva and Leah Spencer identify trace evidence found at both crime scenes: a theatrical make-up called Clown White E83. An invoice from Stagecraft Theatrical Supply Company in the case file reveals that Clown White E83 is made exclusively for the Freak Show clown troupe. 



An article in the newspaper states that an anonymous person who called himself Jack Doe was the winner of the Ultimate Poker Tournament held at the Labyrinth Casino in Forrest City on October 19. The tournament began at 6:00 pm and play continued uninterrupted until after 2:00 am. The winner, Jack Doe, was given awarded a custom, commemorative poker chip with an image of a Minotaur in addition to his cash winnings. A search of the Freak Show grounds by the FBI uncovered the identity of tournament winner, Jack Doe. The custom, commemorative poker chip was found in a lockbox under the cot in the tent belonging to Arthur Shiner (Pogo). Shiner was the poker tournament winner who used the alias Jack Doe. 


The Freak Show balloon in the evidence provides the website address for the Freak Show webpage (once the balloon is inflated).  On the “Announcements” page, it states that Camila Silva was killed between 12:30 am and 1:00 am on October 20.  Her time of death establishes an alibi for Pogo. Since Pogo was at the poker tournament during the time that Camila Silva was killed, he cannot be the killer.



The serial killer left a message taunting law enforcement written in blood at each of the three crime scenes. In the order that the killings occurred, these numbers were 941, 500, and 3245. Taken together, these numbers comprise a telephone number: 941-500-3245. Calling the number reveals a disturbing message from the killer. It also provides an alibi for Ernie Little (Jingles). An undated medical record from Bedford County Hospital in the evidence reveals that a boy named John A. Prufrock suffered serious injuries. The report notes: “He had some hearing loss and significant damage to his vocal cords. He can manage only soft, raspy speech. The injury will be permanent and he will never recover the ruction of his vocal cords.”  A handwritten note in the case file reveals  that “David Prufrock” was the birth name of Ernie Little (Jingles), who was adopted as a young boy and his name was changed. Even though Agent Grant got the first name wrong (David) in the note, the weight of the evidence indicates John Prufrock must be Ernie Little. Since Little can speak only with a soft, raspy voice, and the serial killer spoke normally on the telephone message, Ernie Little (Jingles) is not the serial killer.



In an interview excerpt in the newspaper, Zazel Van de Berg stated that Doink (Angus Melo) stayed over in her trailer on the night of October 20, and said: “One night we went back to my trailer after the last showoff the night and stayed up late having fun. Then he just decoded to get up and leave right at 3:00 am. That was the night of October 19th, turning into October 20 when the clock passed midnight.  He hardly said more than a few words to me, got dressed, and left … after I heard about the murder of the girl, Carla Silva, I started to wonder. Was it just a strange coincidence?”  Although Doink’s actions appear suspicious at first, they actually provide him with an alibi. Since Doink was with Zazel Van de Berg during the time that Silva was killed, he cannot be the murderer.



As indicated previously, the Freak Show balloon provides the website address for the Freak Show once the balloon is inflated. Visiting the website not only provides background information about the Freak Show and the time of death of Camila Silva, it also reveals that Oleg Babikov (Chuckles) has an alibi. Visiting the “Announcements” page reveals that Chuckles was not in Port St. James during the murder of Lenore Dombrowski. Chuckles had suffered an injury to his Achilles tendon and was recovering in a rehab facility in New York when Dombrowski was killed. Chuckles cannot be the serial killer.



The case file contains the drivers’ license for Bingo (Barry Nock).  The license states that Nock’s blood type is O negative. The article about the Forrest City murders in the newspaper indicates that the FBI found trace blood evidence from the killer left on the plastic wrapping covering the body of Leah Spencer. It was blood type A positive.  Since Nock has a different blood type, he cannot be the killer.



The serial killer is Bam Bam. He has no alibi for the killings and the other members of the Freak Show clown troupe can be ruled out as suspects based on the evidence. What was Bam Bam’s motive?  When the FBI searched the Freak Show grounds, they found a cardboard box in a hollow tree containing a human toe and a card with a ferris wheel on the front and a grid of colored letters on the back. Decode the message by following the sequence of colors on the ferris wheel cars: red, green, blue, yellow and purple. Read the letters in the grid from top to bottom starting with the red letters, then green, blue, yellow and finally purple. This reveals a message from the killer: “I will continue the work begun by great grandfather Greg.” The Hatchet the Clown book tells the story of a series of gruesome serial murders committed in the early 1900’s by Greg Anderson. The coded message provides Bam Bam’s depraved motive: he is following in the footsteps of his murderous ancestor.

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