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A man was shot dead in his car. The doors are closed, and locked. The windows are up. The keys are in the ignition. It's clear from the fragmentation around the bullet hole in the front windshield that the shot came from the inside of the car.

On inspection of the crime scene it quickly becomes apparent that the killer neither opened nor closed any of the doors or windows. As the killer is no longer in the car, one question remains.

How did the killer exit the car?

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    $\begingroup$ "It's clear from the fragmentation around the bullet hole in the front windshield that the shot came from the inside of the car." - I'm confused. If the shot came from inside the car, how did the bullet make a hole in the windshield? $\endgroup$ – PopularIsn'tRight Nov 10 '14 at 4:57
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    $\begingroup$ @Bachrach44 my guess would be that the shooter was seated in the backseat, thus the shot killed the man and exited through the windshield. $\endgroup$ – Charles Nov 10 '14 at 5:11
  • $\begingroup$ Asking for clarification: Was the killer inside the car at the moment of the shot? $\endgroup$ – nic Nov 10 '14 at 6:43
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    $\begingroup$ I fail to see the problem. Shot comes from inside the car. Guy who shot opens the door and gets out. Locks and closes the door. $\endgroup$ – imallett Nov 10 '14 at 7:12
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    $\begingroup$ @imallett It doesn't appear (as far I can tell) that your suggested solution is compatible with the requirement that "the killer neither opened nor closed any of the doors or windows." $\endgroup$ – apsillers Nov 10 '14 at 13:23

10 Answers 10

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The car is a convertible like the one below and the killer simply jumped out of the car.

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ Wow. Convertible in the snow. $\endgroup$ – Justin Nov 9 '14 at 8:52
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    $\begingroup$ @Quincunx Not only that. A wooden table is operating the vehicle. $\endgroup$ – Shai Nov 9 '14 at 13:08
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    $\begingroup$ @Quincunx: What's really bizarre about the picture is that a convertible is, well, convertible. Why didn't they just raise the roof?? (OK, so the table looks like a kind of a tight fit, but it's not that bad. Surely, with a bit of fine tuning, they could've made it fit.) $\endgroup$ – Ilmari Karonen Nov 10 '14 at 13:55
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    $\begingroup$ Even if a person is between the table and steering wheel (the legs of the table are probably around the sides of the seat), his head is covered by the blue plastic so he can't really see. $\endgroup$ – pacoverflow Nov 10 '14 at 20:39
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    $\begingroup$ @IlmariKaronen Obviously, the table wanted to feel the cool breeze through her hair. Plus, she can show off her legs. $\endgroup$ – tjbtech Nov 30 '14 at 0:42
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As it is unlikely a suicide inside a car would result in the bullet going through the windshield (driver's side window or roof are much more likely), I'd conclude that the killer was behind the victim in the back seat. If he didn't exit via any door or window, that leaves the trunk.

Many cars have a way to easily access the trunk from the back seat, so as long as he had a way to open it (say a button on the dashboard), that's the way to go.

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    $\begingroup$ Many trunks have an escape lever too. $\endgroup$ – Daniel Nov 9 '14 at 17:04
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There was another person on the crime scene who opened and closed the door for the killer.

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The killer was dragged out of the car by police/medics and put into a bodybag. The man shot himself.

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    $\begingroup$ The puzzle states that the killer is no longer in the car, so if you're right about who, there's an obvious way he exited. $\endgroup$ – Joel Rondeau Nov 9 '14 at 6:18
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The killer got in the car the day before and shot through the windshield. The next day, the murder victim got in the car and was about to start it when he noticed the bullet hole and stopped to investigate. The killer then shot him through the same bullet hole with a smaller caliber round from outside the car.

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Most cars nowadays are locked with electronic gizmos, not keys. The vicious killer probably just took that off and locked the car to delay the police.

Alternatively, his wife killed him. She obviously has a spare key.

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Killer shot the driver. The driver's death caused an accident which caused the killer (who was not wearing a seatbelt) to be thrown from the car through the windshield.

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The killer

climbed out the sunroof

which is arguably not a window.

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I will highlight two possibilities.

First, considering the windshield direction the killer was in the backseat and he may have escaped from the trunk of the car by some contraptions through the boot of the car.

Secondly, he might have made a duplicate key set to lock it from outside to baffle the authorities.

In either cases he must be familiar withe car earlier to devise such things. So the killer might be an acquaintance of the victim - or the killer was never there in car, which is a less realistic possibility since no weapon was found so the killer must have been gone with the weapon.

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I think the killer was never in the car. The hole in the windshield came from someone shooting inward to the guy via the AC vent ducts with the engine open. It ricocheted and went back out the windscreen

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  • $\begingroup$ "I think the killer was never in the car." No, the killer was in the car. $\endgroup$ – zzzzBov Apr 3 '15 at 17:18
  • $\begingroup$ Where is that presumed? $\endgroup$ – Maximin Apr 3 '15 at 17:19
  • $\begingroup$ "It's clear...that the shot came from the inside of the car." and "How did the killer exit the car?". $\endgroup$ – zzzzBov Apr 3 '15 at 17:21

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