Navreen, Alan and Justin
On September 16, 2016, a very unfortunate accident occurred at Vancouver’s Playstate. When the roller coaster crashed, there were two staff members on the ride because they were examining the repair done to one of the oldest rides at Playstate. This roller coaster was not repaired well, which is why it went off the tracks and crashed into a walkway. A girl named Kelly Mai decreased during this event while her co-worker, Jan Schmidt, only suffered from a concussion. When the roller coaster crashed onto the walkway, five people got minor injuries from standing on the walkway. The manager of Playstate said that she had an allergic reaction to cashews while she was on the ride so she decreased because of her allergy and not due to the injuries she got during the crash. There was an expired epi-pen found within the crash scene, which meant the epi-pen that was used on Kelly was expired.
We first eliminated those who have very little incentives to conduct the murder, leaving us with two potential targets: Steve Longmore and Andrea Sadana. Our group has concluded that the murderer is Steve Longmire. We have not only found Steve to have motives to commit this murder, we have also found conclusive, factual evidence to support this claim.
Let’s first establish the basis of our conclusion. When we were first reading through the witnesses’ ’interviews, we understood that Kelly’s boyfriend, Brandon Longmire, was overly possessive about her. Whereas Brandon’s twin brother, Steve, disliked Kelly as Brandon always spent his time on her, therefore, distancing himself from steve. This is the exact motive for Steve to commit this murder — so he may rekindle their bond and “even go to university together”. In addition, during his interview, he had said that “Like he would like to go back. Wonder why he didn’t just go back.” This shows how he did not like Jan or Kelly. Lastly, Steve is a mechanic at Playstate, and since the roller coaster needed repair he has every mean possible to have done something to the ride.
Furthermore, Steve knew Jan and Kelly were going to test the ride together. He, therefore, likely did not repair it correctly on purpose. We have two pieces of evidence to support this assertion. Firstly, there were nitrile working gloves 200 meter within the crash site that were identical to those found in Steve’s locker, suggesting his presence in the area. Secondly, he is a mechanics, yet he is the only mechanic who does not have the tools in his tool box, suggesting that he had left them on his last repair mission. Those lost tools are likely those what were also found 200 meters within the crash site.
In addition, the twitter messages Kelly’s friend, Andrea Sadana, said that they needed locks in the staff locker room—two months prior to the accident. This made us question why Andrea would ask for locks if she was going to switch Kelly’s epi-pen with an expired one — if she wanted to do a substitution, then there would be no reason to further complicate the matter through locking the lockers. This contradiction eliminates her from our list of potential suspects.
Furthermore, during the fingerprint investigation, we discovered that there were multiple coffee cups in the garbage can and had Steve’s and Andrea’s fingerprints on them. We chose to ignore the evidence of Andrea’s fingerprints on the coffee cups because although she was extremely mad at Kelly, she lacks conclusive incentive to harm Kelly since they were friends to begin with.
Now onto the DNA analysis. After we obtained the results, we realized several things.Firstly, Steve had the least traces for coffee in his system, which supports a claim that he was up really early so that he could disassemble the ride.
Secondly, we have found cashew and coffee only in Kelly’s swab and not stomach. This was a confusing piece of evidence for us, we interpreted as that Kelly did not swallow any coffee and cashew, but merely had it in her mouth. Since the reason of death was exposure to cashew, the reaction must have occurred upon exposure in the mouth alone. In addition, the mouth swab of Kelly matched with that of Jan’s, which also contained cashew. This leads us to an interesting hypothesis: a murder by kissing.
When we piece all the evidence together, we can make out the story: Steve got up in the morning, maladjusted the ride in attempt to cover up the murder and switched the epi-pen in Kelly’s locker. Since Steve knew how cautious Brandon and Kelly are towards possible exposure to allergens (as suggested Brandon’s tweet), he hid the cashew allergen in the most exotic place possible, a cup of coffee which he would give to Jan. Since the allergen can be hid in the form of cashew milk, it is hard for anyone to take notice. After consuming the coffee, Jan would indirectly murdering Kelly by exposing her to the allergen though a kiss. Steve is well aware of the fact that Kelly has been cheating with Brandon, which is not only backed by a Twitter comment, but also by his interview. This leads us to this conclusion, which is consistent with the DNA analysis, interview, factual evidences and motives behind murder.
We found our hypothesis to be ironic — a gentle kiss that would bring a dramatic death. The last step to inditing the suspect would be to have Jan testify if he had received weird tasting coffee from Steve and to analyze if there are cashew milk found inside coffee cups. If any of the last two evident was found, we will have the final, conclusive evidence.