DALLAS — Dallas Downtown Murder Mystery character Luke the Drifter offered only shaky answers to questions.
That’s how murder mystery “detective” Pam Sornson, of Salem, sniffed him out as the man who murdered the unfortunate, and suddenly rich, paper boy Jedidiah on his wedding day.
“He was shifty,” she said Saturday after the killer was revealed to be Luke, played by Nathan Myers. “He didn’t have a good answer for anything, and he got nervous when I asked about Chester.”
Chester is Dallas’ deputy who had been missing for weeks. Sornson’s theory had Luke and Chester worked together on the murder. Actually, it was revealed at the end that Luke has a sister and mother in the cast of characters, LaVinia Lush (his sister played by Sarah Javins) and Rosie Raven (actually Rosie Rattlesnake played by Carol Cheney).
The threesome devised several schemes to get their hands on the gold, including marrying LaVinia to Jedidiah. When that didn’t happen, Luke stole Jedidiah’s gold and left a rattlesnake in its place.
“My fact pattern wasn’t correct, but the outcome was,” Sornson said.
She was one of three people who guessed correctly.
Sornson said a friend of hers attended last year’s murder mystery and had fun, so she decided to give Saturday’s show a try.
She wasn’t disappointed.
“This is a great event,” she said. “Dallas did a really good job.”
Zach Brehm, who played the often-under-the-influence dentist Doc Pryor, said there was no shortage of fun for the cast. Brehm said no one but the murderer knew who the killer was, and they were trying to figure it out with the audience. The characters were given their alibi and lines to say, but not the complete script.
“If you weren’t the murderer, you just found who it was a few minutes ago,” he said after the reveal. “We don’t have all the clues.”
Eddie Nelson, the mystery’s co-author and treasurer of show host Dallas Downtown Association, said attendance was down from about 200 last year. She said there were a lot of other events happening around Polk County on Saturday, so that could have been the reason.
“Everybody had a good time,” Nelson said. “I think it went really well.”