THE RED NOSE
Updated: Jan 13
Mysterious murders, zero clues, and a mole in the police force; how are two people gonna solve it all?
Based on the true-crime podcast "John Wayne Gacy: The Serial Killer clown" that was hosted by Kendall Rae, I created this story with the goal of exploring new genres, ways of thinking, and learning about the world. (Goal 4) . Developing this crime novel with the intent of creating a text from different perspectives other than mine. (Goal 13). I hope you enjoy the diverse views from each of the main characters in this because that would be what I would be most proud of.
"Breaking news, the police department of New York City has just found another body, this time outside a toy shop for children; and just like all of the other victims, a clown nose has been found near the dead body. Neighboring shop owners have not reported any disturbances or irregular activities before finding the body. The police of New York City are working their hardest to find the murderer, but so far have no leads. If you know anything about these gruesome murders please contact us immediately. I’m Jessica Dreyfus, and again, make sure to stay updated with the daily news.”
Wow, the police still haven’t found the culprit yet huh? Well, that is to be expected of New York's police department.
“Now where were we?”, I remarked with a smirk as I gazed down at all the equipment; then at the terrified boy in front of me.
It was about time they called in a professional, honestly how long were they going to let these murders go on. I took one last glance in the mirror before heading out. Hair straightened, outfit composed, ready to go. I left pretty early around 7:30 am before the rush hour, but of course, there was still some traffic. Arriving at the police department I quickly made my way in.
“Detective Wong, a pleasure to meet you, please come this way.”, an officer greeted me. He looked middle-aged, with smooth jet black hair, and seemed quite charming. I took a glance at his name tag. Steven Dreyfus.
I followed him into a mini office; the office I supposed that I would be working in. It didn’t have a bad layout; two wide rectangular desks around the center along with some chairs, cabinets, a whiteboard, and a little coffee station in the corner. While entering the workroom, I could already see another figure in the office, a very familiar figure. Messy dirty blonde hair, a well-built figure, and that stupid smirk.
“This is officer Rogers, he will be working on this case with you. Good luck.”, and with that, the policeman left us.
“Well, well, well, hello detective Wong.”
I knew a detective was coming in, but I didn’t know it was going to be her. She hasn’t changed at all; the same well straightened dark hair, rounded glasses, and confident composure. I’ve known her since high school but we didn’t get along. Always comparing grades, academic scholarships, and achievements. Of course, none of this matters now, we have a murder to solve.
As she was getting comfortable I went to get the info. One singular folder with barely anything; a couple of reports, statements, and some photos of the crime scenes.
“Is this all we have?”, she asked surprisedly.
“Well, yes, the murderer likes to strangle his victims, and with everything we have right now it doesn’t seem like many of the victims knew each other very well, or at all.”, I replied. , “For all, we know it could be another maniac on a killing spree”.
But still, with the amount of death that this killer caused, you’d think that the police department would have some sort of lead by now; well I guess that’s why they called in a professional.
“Let’s get started shall we?”, I state.
“I’m home!”, I shouted.
I dropped my coat on the rack and headed to the kitchen, something smells good.
“Hey sis, I’m making pasta for dinner today.”, Steven said with a smile.
“Yes! Tell me if you need anything, I’ll be looking at a report in my room.” I replied heading upstairs.
I opened my laptop and clicked the folder containing information about the murders. The police department hasn't even gotten a clue yet, so I figured I could help out a bit. Being a reporter can be very useful, you can ask firsthand questions to the police. You could even know some bits of information that the public wouldn’t; like how every time the police think they have a lead, it turns out to be wrong. Looking at the photos of the crime scenes in my reports, it’s quite obvious that the killer is into 15-20-year-old men. I mean all his victims are young males, and most of them have part-time jobs.
Even though a reporter could be quite useful, you still wouldn’t know much personal information about the victims. I looked over the data that I currently have and after a while, gave a deep sigh. This isn’t much to go off of; leads turning out to be dead ends, victims that seem to be killed off randomly, and the most disturbing part was those unsettling noses. Red clown noses that the killer uses; I guess that’s some kind of twisted signature for their victims.
“Jessica! Time for dinner", Steven shouted from the kitchen.
Guess I’ll work on this later. I closed up my laptop in frustration and went downstairs to be awaited with delicious carbonara.
“Looks great! Wait, where are you going?”, I asked, looking at Steven. He changed back in his officer uniform and was heading out the door.
“I already ate and I got to do something back at the office.”, he replied while putting on his coat, “I’ll be back soon, don’t worry.”
And without any further explanation, he went out the door.
5 hours. We have been at this for 5 hours and still not a single clue. I am well aware that the policy leads have ended up nowhere, but this is just crazy.
The only solid pieces of evidence that I could make out were that all these young males worked around here. Either at car dealerships or fast-food restaurants; meaning that the killer is employed or lives around the area. The other conclusion that I have come to is that the murderer is most likely a male. From the autopsies that the lab has given back, the killer liked to strangle their victims after torturing them; a female wouldn’t easily overpower all these young men.
This was gonna be harder than I thought; the killer isn’t some idiotic psychopath, he knows what he’s doing.
“This reminds me of the serial killer clown case in Waterloo,” Andrew spoke suddenly.
“Pardon?” I asked in confusion.
“You know, the killer who was so loved by his community and family that no one suspected him to be the murderer who killed 33 young males,'' he explained.
I guess he expected me to know about other serial cases outside of New York.
“Right, right”, I utter slowly.
After another hour or so, Andrew went home, said something about a TV show broadcasting that he didn’t want to miss. It was already well past our work hours, guess I should head home soon too. Gathering all the work, I decided to take the file home; just in case I thought of anything. I checked once again to make sure that I had everything in my bag and turned the office lights off.
As I was heading out, I saw another officer walking by, the same one that greeted me in the morning.
“Good work today detective Wong,” he said.
“Thanks?”, I spoke slowly, “What are you still doing here officer Dreyfus, it’s well past work hours.”
“Oh you know, someones gotta stay at the office in case something happens, Mr. Rogers wants someone here just in case. Well, good night!”, he replied kindly.
After saying good night to the officer, I made my way outside. The cool autumn breeze and the smell of leaves are very calming after a stressful day at work. Heading to the almost empty parking lot, I could see my gray Honda, as well as a red Mercedes; license plate DTS1999. It looks familiar… but I can’t seem to quite put my finger on it. I’m probably being paranoid, I should get some sleep.
10:00 pm, I should probably head to bed soon. But with everything we haven’t discovered yet, and with the little that we have, it seemed impossible to rest my mind. Who could this sick person be? Why the heck was he doing it? There are thousands of more questions in my head, I mean since all the victims live either alone or with a roommate, I can’t seem to figure out any connections.
Heck if my mind was spinning like this, Sophie’s must be going crazy. I laugh a little to myself remembering all the times I was able to figure out something she couldn’t. Those were fun times, back then, all I had to worry about was studying hard so she wouldn’t be able to gloat at me.
I took a deep breath and tried to sleep again.
It’s pitch dark, I hear voices, whispers. All my questions and no answers.
Who is the murderer, how do I find him… the evidence… clown noses…
“You know who he is Andrew, or at least where he is”, A glowing figure in the distance said.
Who does that voice belong to? Sounds like a female… It's familiar...Sophie?
What does she mean? I don’t know who he is. The figures coming closer and closer.
“The clown in Waterloo.”
I woke up covered in sweat. I know where he is.
It was 3:42 am. They called me in at 3:42 in the morning. I did my hair, makeup, everything in under 30 minutes. My director said there was another murder that they wanted me to report. Usually, I would be excited, but not this time. I just found out that the body was near a candy shop, but not any candy shop, it was the one near the police station. Steven hasn’t come home yet and he said he was gonna be at the station. Normally I wouldn’t be this worried, but I couldn’t help with all of these negative thoughts.
I arrived at the crime scene. As usual red and blue lights filled my sight and I could hear nothing other than the sirens. I ran past the caution tape and hurried to where the group of police officers gathered.
The sight was gruesome, this time the murderer didn’t just choke the victim; he whipped him until his body was covered in blood. As horrifying as the sight was, I felt a surge of relief. It was strange and probably even horrible, but I was so relieved that my brother wasn’t the one lying in the blood bath. Taking some time to collect myself, I made my way to my cameraman.
“Are you ready to go?”, he asked.
As I was about to answer him, something caught my eye. A red Mercedes, license plate: DTS1999. He’s here? I don’t think he’s on the scene right now, maybe he’s in the office? I should go find him and ask him why he was gone for so long-
“Jessica?”, a voice snapped me back to reality. It was my camera guy. Right, I have a job to do; I’ll worry about him later, he’s not dead, and that’s enough to calm my mind for now.
“Yes, I’m ready to go.”
I was tired but I arrived at the scene quickly anyways. Another victim was found, but this time the body was wrecked, whipped till they bleed everywhere. I speed-walked around the crime scene for a couple of minutes before I found him. Andrew ran towards me as soon as he saw me but something was off; he looked pale and seemed like he was just woken up from a nightmare. I wonder if he’s alright.
“Sophie, the murder, he’s here!”, he exclaimed.
“What?”, I say in utter confusion, “How did you come up with that? Did you mean he was here?”
“No, no! He works in the police department, our police department! Look, every time we think we have a clue on something, we always turn out to be wrong. Why do you think that is? Only a pure genius could plan all of this without having any inside knowledge”, he explained.
He seemed to be running on adrenaline, did he hit his head on the way here or something?
But still, that wasn’t what I expected. I mean it sounds kind of cliche, was it really that easy? A crazy police officer on a killing spree is a possibility, but it sounds like something from a murder show; too simple. However, the more I thought about it, the more likely it became.
Then, as I was trying to connect all my thoughts, something drew my attention. A red Mercedes.
“Hey Andrew, who was the police officer that you got to stay behind in the main office last night”, I asked slowly.
“Officer? What officer? Nighttime duties are in another department, a couple of blocks away. No one was supposed to stay behind in the office today”, he answered, fully unaware of why I was asking.
“I need you to do a background check on the officer Steven Dreyfus right away. I think he might have something to do with all these murders or even be the murder himself”, I unraveled.
He looked at me quite surprised. Then after a couple of seconds, he agreed and headed to the department. I followed him in and looked around the rest of the department. No sign of the officer that I was greeted by. His car was still out in the front last time I checked…
I rushed outside and looked around frantically for the red car. It wasn’t there; god damn it. Going inside to find Andrew, I hoped he found something, anything, I needed some good news right now.
“Got anything?”, I questioned tiredly.
“You won’t believe this, Steven has part-time jobs where all of our victims worked. Normally you wouldn’t need a part-time job when working at the station, even if you are suffering financially, and especially if you are a higher-up officer. But this guy has like three”, Andrew told me, he looks pale. “But Steven is so trusted by everyone here…”
“Do you know where he lives?”, I asked slowly.
We couldn’t get a search warrant on such short notice. Guess luck was in our favor when we found out that Steven has a sister, a reporter. The girl’s name was Jessica Dreyfus and she was living with him currently. The sibling resemblance was there, she had long dark hair, a pretty face, and seemed like she had just begun her adult-hood years. Jessica was on the scene right now, documenting the murder for the world.
After she finished shooting we went to ask her for permission to enter her and Steven’s house.
“Of course officer, but may I ask why?”, she questioned.
“We suspect your brother may have something to do with the murders”, I stated simply.
“I- oh. Um, I don’t think you’ll find anything there, but you are more than welcome to check,” she uttered slowly.
This must be a shock to her. I would expect her to be in some sort of confusion, but we have no time to take things slow right now. We got into Sophie’s car and made our way to Jessica’s house. The car ride was silent, no one talked, but I guess that was for the best.
Arriving at their house in a short amount of time, Jessica pulled out her keys. There was no car parked in front of the garage, of course, it could be inside. Entering the house slowly and silently, we could hear rummaging aside in the house.
“Steven? Are you home yet?”, Jessica whispered.
The rummaging stopped. I looked over to Sophie, she was already looking at me.
“Ms. Dreyfus, may we take a look around?”, I asked.
“Of course”, she said quietly, giving us a small smile. She’s scared, she looks terrified.
We both took our guns out of their threshold and made our way slowly over to where the sound was. Not many seconds later, footsteps approached us.
“Officer Dreyfus? Are you there, we just want to talk”, Sophie stated firmly.
We waited a couple of seconds and then he came out.
He seemed normal. Like he just got home from work and nothing unusual happened. We all know that didn’t happen.
The room’s air shifted, everyone was on edge, it made it worse that the room was almost pitch black.
“Ah, hello detective, officer, to what do I owe the pleasure?”, he asked calmly.
“We were just looking around, may we continue?”, I spoke firmly; it wasn't a question. I couldn’t admit it but I was scared. I can’t show any fear, fear weakness the mind.
Steven seemed to clench his jaw for a moment, but the look of frustration on his face disappeared fast.
“Of course”, He replied sweetly; you could hear he was forcing his voice, this act.
Me and Andrew made our way to the room way to the kitchen. Nothing seemed unusual, everything was in order except for one cabinet on the side of the wall. If it wasn’t slightly sticking out, we surely would have missed it.
I looked at Steven, he seemed distracted. Giving Andrew a signal to keep an eye on him, I slowly opened the cabinet.
“Oh my god…”, I trailed off.
The sight was not pleasant whatsoever. You could see gloves, whips, chains, and a bunch of red clown noses. Fresh blood was on the whips and gloves, I feel sick to my stomach. Looking back I could see Andrew staring at all the evidence too.
Wait, who was watching Steven? I turned around quickly but not before a click came behind us. He had a gun, of course he had a gun. But Steven wasn’t pointing the weapon at us, no, the gun was right by the head of his sister.
Crap! This wasn’t supposed to happen; it’s what I get for being impatient. I thought if I could mix up the killing tactics today, it might scare them, or lead them to a state of confusion. They were getting close; she was getting close. I should have expected a detective to be hired, the police weren’t that stupid. If I did this on a weekend, the detective wouldn’t have been at the station after working hours that late. Now, look at me, holding a gun to my own sister’s head. I lost my cool composure, I’m panicking. I knew I would get caught, not this early though, I wanted to beat him god damn it…
“Here’s what’s gonna happen. You're gonna let me go, you are not going to follow me or her. If you do, she dies”, I say coldly.
The detective and police officer looked at each other, they had no choice.
I slowly made my way out of the door. Jessica looks terrified, but I can’t be bothered right now, I can’t get caught. Making my way to the garage, I shoved Jessica inside the passenger seat, gun still pointed to her head. Fumbling to get the keys out of my pockets, I started the car in a hurry; exiting the garage.
I started driving out on the rural roads. Not many cars and barely any surveillance, it was my best chance of getting out of here. After about 20 minutes I feel different; again.
Where was I? I’m driving, I turn around to see a gun in my hand and Jessica crying silently. Oh god, this happened again? Shoot, now I guess I’m running from the police. But why did I have to drag Jessica into this? I’m horrible.
I stopped the car and made my way over to Jessica’s car door.
“Get out, get out now”, I say. I need to do this before it happens again.
“Steven, why, why are you doing this?”, she whimpered. Her face was pale, she seemed so scared. It was pitch dark, would it be safe to leave her out here alone? The police will find her soon enough, I have to get out of here.
Then a droplet hit my sleeve. Was it raining? I lifted my hands to my face; was I... crying? Damn it, damn it, damn it.
“Jessica I’m sorry, I’m so very sorry, but you have to leave. Please”, I whispered.
My head went blank for a second once more than I noticed the gun in my hand, I wanted to shoot her. I quickly ran to my car and drove away. I wanted to kill my sister. The urge to cry suddenly hit me, but I couldn’t; not when I heard the sirens.
I wiped away the tears that I had. Why was I crying again? Doesn’t matter, the police are here. When did they block off all my exits? Pft, I could deal with that, I’ll just run them over. That would add to my kill count. I started speeding faster and faster, they’ll all die...
Thank god Sophie had the station’s radio on her. As soon as he left the door we contacted the department. They got all available officers to head out to where we saw his car drive by last. It took a while, but then we saw Jessica.
She looks confused and terrified, two officers comforted her while the rest chased Steven. He was on a one-way road, there was nowhere for him to run. No civilians were around, all you could see was flat terrain for miles. The cops that got there beforehand laid down a spike strip, he wouldn’t be able to see them at night. I and a couple of other cars were chasing him from behind so he had nowhere else to go.
A couple of minutes later, I saw the police cars about a kilometer away, and then a red Mercedes. But the car didn’t stop, it seemed to be going faster; is this guy crazy!? Thank god we laid the spike strip down, it slashed his tires and stopped him from causing any harm to nearby officers.
I took a deep breath, we caught him, we finally got him. Three cops approached his vehicle and escorted him out. I was relieved, Sophie looked much calmer. We did it.
There I was, in a psych ward, but I wasn’t there because of me; it was because of Steven. They finally caught the killer, I should be glad or even happy right? If that was the case then I certainly do not understand why my insides are churning, why I’m so anxious; why my chest was aching. Probably because I never expected the killer to be my brother.
As I was deep in thought, the psychiatrist came in and sat down in front of me.
“Let’s begin shall we?”, asked the doctor.
I hummed in response.
“So, has Steven gone through anything traumatic recently or from the past?”, he began.
“Well… our father was abusive. He had high standards, and when we failed to meet them, we would be punished,” I explained, “But he seemed to target Steven a bit more; it wasn’t pleasant.”
He nodded and wrote something down on his clipboard, then continued.
“Has he been acting strange lately?” questioned the doctor.
“I-no, no I didn’t notice anything. He seemed perfectly normal to me”, I answered. That was the total truth, he seemed fine to me whenever I was with him. The normal Steven that I knew, the one that wouldn’t even harm a fly. All of this and he’s the killer, was he pretending?
“Ok thank you, we will be talking to Mr.Dreyfus now,” he replied, escorting me out.
Steven’s trial was later this morning, I hope they would find something to excuse his behavior. Something that could explain that he wasn’t a sick psychopath. Regardless of any pardon, Steven still killed 13 people. The thought of it made me sick, I hope the trial goes well. Steven was the only person I had left.
I hope he wasn’t sentenced… at least not to death.
“Please rise for the hearing of Steven Dreyfus”, commanded the judge.
It was pointless to put this guy on trial, I mean he killed 13 people! Unless he had a mental disorder, death would be his fate.
“We will begin with the defendant, please begin”, he stated.
"Well your honor, my client here said that he has no excuse for his actions and is going to take whatever punishment the people see fit”, explained the lawyer.
So this guy wasn’t even going to make a sorry excuse to prove his innocence, well that is to be expected of serial killers.
“Very well, but before we continue, may I ask why your client has a gag in his mouth? He looks quite uncomfortable”, the judge questioned, but he doesn’t show a hint of concern.
“Of course your honor, that was actually what I was going to explain. You see my client has a dissociative identity disorder, DID for short. This disorder causes my client to have 2 very different personalities. DID can happen from something traumatic…”
The trial didn’t drag out for too long. After Steven’s lawyer explained what DID was, it was quite obvious why he had the gag in his mouth. He didn’t want the other him to cause trouble. In the end, Steven was sent to Ellis Island, Psychopathic Ward. According to the doctors at the mental facility, Steven had witnessed a gruesome murder when on a business trip. The killer just happened to be Jhon Wayne Gacy, the serial killer clown. Seems like he wanted to beat his kill count.
Oh, this is all so messed up, I need a break.
“Hey, detective Wong!”
I turn around to see Andrew.
“Do you want to maybe grab a coffee sometime?”, he asked
This was a little surprising, but the lack of sleep seemed to hit me.
“Yeah, sure! You know what let’s get one right now”, I replied with a smile.