Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Homicide - The Devil's in the Details

Our prime suspect Gabe Babbett, is looking more and more like our man. When we left he was in custody in Chicago, and his truck had been impounded. We have a witness reporting he was involved in an altercation with our two murder victims near the site of a theft, and testimony indicating he was trying to sell stolen property on his trip to Delaware. We'll flash forward a bit, and allow some forensics work to get done in the background. The two things we're most interested in are the crime scene at the church and Babbett's truck. Specifically we're looking for fingerprints at the former, and blood evidence at the latter.

Since Heather Graham, the administrator at the church, was able to identify the missing documents, we'll also forward that information on to the Delaware State Police, and see if they can figure out where they ended up. We suspect, based on Woods's interrogation, that Babbett went to Milford to sell the stolen property. There can't be that many collectors of scholarly religious documents in Milford, can there?

Let's check out the crime scene first, since that's pretty cut and dried. Of our victims and suspect, only Marin had access to the vault where the documents were kept. If we find fingerprints from Babbett or Michelle Allen, that directly implicates them in the theft. I think it's likely we'll find these, as it sounds like there was some mutual distrust among our thieves. Time for Mythic GM!

  • Q1: Do we find Babbett's fingerprints? (Likely)
  • Answer: Extreme yes
  • Event: Focus: Move away from a thread. Meaning: Carelessness possessions.
  • Q2: Do we find Allen's fingerprints? (Likely)
  • Answer: Yes
  • Event: Focus: NPC negative. Meaning: Recruit pain.
Double event, that sounds like an interesting theft. The first event ties to the thread "Who killed Michelle Allen?" The meaning seems to indicate an item is involved. Right now we have a fairly firm theory that Babbett killed Allen. It sounds like the forensics team found a stray object at the scene. Let's ask a few questions, roll a few dice, and find out what it was.

  • Q3: Is the item tied to one of Allen, Babbett, or Marin? (near sure thing)
  • Answer: Yes (belongs to Marin)
  • Q4: Is it a weapon? (likely)
  • Answer: Yes (something other than a gun or knife).
  • Q5: Has it been used? (50/50)
  • Answer: yes
  • Event: Focus: NPC action. Meaning: Recruit pain.
Another event, and this one matches up meaning with one of the previous. Sounds like a fight using some sort of improvised weapon to me. I'll declare we have a bloody religious icon dropped under a table. The dice say Babbett was our attacker, and Marin the target. We'll rule we have blood and fingerprints on a heavy metal cross that match up to Marin and Babbett respectively. Looking back at our first event, this conflict doesn't seem to change our stance on who killed Allen much. But the fact that Marin and Babbett were fighting might indicate Marin was desperate, perhaps desperate enough to do something violent. We'll store that knowledge for now in our tracking information. From this crime scene it's very clear that we have Marin, Babbett, and Allen dead to rights on this theft.

On to Babbett's truck. We're most interested in blood evidence here, but we'll also check for anything else that might help our case, evidence linking the truck to the scene of the theft or the stolen documents, weapons, clues about Babbett's destination in Delaware, or his contacts there.

  • Q6: Any blood evidence in the truck? (very likely)
  • Answer: No
  • Q7: Any evidence the truck was near the theft scene? (50/50)
  • Answer: Yes
  • Q8: Any evidence of the stolen documents? (50/50)
  • Answer: No
  • Q9: Any information on Babbett's Delaware destination?  (50/50)
  • Answer: Extreme no

So the truck is pretty clean, maybe Babbett isn't completely stupid. The only evidence we have that might be useful is something tied to the theft. Let's declare that as a parking lot ticket stub. There's not a lot to work with here, so let's move on to the Delaware investigation.

  • Q10: Any car rental records for Babbett in Delaware? (very likely)
  • Answer: Yes
  • Q11: Did the car have a GPS? (likely)
  • Answer: Yes
  • Q12: Was it used? (50/50)
  • Answer: Extreme no

Only limited help there, but if nothing else, we'll have mileage information on the car, and we can check Babbett's credit card records to see if he used them in the area. That should limit the search area a bit.

  • Q13: Can the Delaware police link Babbett's movements to a destination? (unlikely)
  • Answer: Yes
  • Q14: Can they determine who he met? (likely - since they knew where he went)
  • Answer: No
  • Q15: Is the destination meaningful, relative to the stolen documents? (50/50)
  • Answer: Yes
So the police know where he went, but not who he met with. The destination itself has some meaning relative to the documents. Could it be a museum, university, or religious organization that might have a vested interest in the documents?

  • Q16: An institution with ties to the documents? (very likely)
  • Answer: Yes
A random dice roll tells us it was some sort of religious institution. Sounds like it's time to bring some pressure to bear. If no one at the destination is willing to talk, it's time to break out the search warrants and publicity. We'll leave that in the hands of the Delaware police for now. Let's review our findings and update our theory:

  • Allen and Babbett convince or coerce Marin to help them steal a scholarly religious document from the church vaults.
  • During the robbery Babbett wounds Marin, leaving a bloody improvised weapon behind.
  • Woods and Babbett steal the document, along with Allen's gun, from her apartment.
  • The trio fight again, this time in Allen's car at the apartment parking lot.
  • Allen and Marin end up dead, shot with Allen's stolen gun. Babbett's fingerprints are on the gun.
  • Marin's body is moved to his old apartment, and left to rot.
  • Allen's body is moved to her apartment and staged as a suicide, but without the gun.
  • Babbett convinces Woods to steal property records from the apartment offices for unknown reasons.
  • Babbett takes the stolen property to Delaware and visits a religious organization.
  • Babbett calls in a tip that there is a body in Marin's apartment.
  • Babbett is apprehended on his return.

So we're still pretty well locked in on Babbett as our shooter, but the situation may have been more complex than we originally thought. Right now it looks like our only real witness to the murders is Babbett himself. We can tie him directly to the murder weapon, the theft at the church, transporting stolen goods over state lines, possible antiquities theft, and the robberies at Allen's apartment the apartment office, it seems like we have a pretty good set of evidence to put him away for at least a while. Next time we'll see if the Delaware police can provide any further ammunition and confront him with the evidence. Til then...

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