The first in our series exploring LA Noire’s divergent cases; we’re starting off with one of the game’s earlier crimes, a suspected hit-and-run at Ray’s Café.

Let us know how you got on with the same case and how your experience differed in the comments section. Oh and a spot of house-keeping: key clues from our experience are underlined while we state doubt and lie interview choices in brackets.

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Case file #1: A Marriage Made in Heaven (Traffic Desk)
Crime: Suspected hit-and-run
Victim: Lestor Pattinson

Location: Ray’s Café (4:45 am)

Upon arriving at the crime scene a uniformed officer informs me that there’s only one witness, a young would-be starlet by the name of Shannon Perry. Before I head to interview her I decide to canvas the crime scene.

Pattinson’s body lays on it side at the wrong end of a long trail of blood; his hit strewn a few feet away. Heavy trauma to the face suggests his head hit the tarmac hard while his chest too is heavily bloodied. Checking his left inside pocket reveals a wallet confirming his name and address, in his right pocket is found an insurance document from California Fire & Life confirming that the deceased’s premium has recently been upped meaning its beneficiaries will receive $10,000 dollars upon his demise. ‘What the fuck!’ is scrawled in red ink over that little bombshell.

With nothing else seemingly pertinent on the body I chat to the pathologist who reveals the blood on Pattinson’s chest was caused by a wound on his chest, possibly consistent with a head-on collision with a car’s hood ornament at speed.

With the body fully checked over, the next stop is our witness, Shannon Perry. She’s happy to provide a make of car, colour, even a partial plate and says that the deceased with having a heated argument with his wife, Lorna Pattinson, just before the accident. She clams up when pressed on the nature of the argument but applying some pressure (doubt) has her spilling the beans – apparently she was going to sell her story to the press for some much-needed career-furthering publicity.

Next up is the barkeeper, Dudley Lynch, who after some pressure (doubt) confirms the dead man was having a blazing row with his wife moments before the accident. Further questioning (doubt) also reveals that Lorna Pattinson was planning on opening a bar with Ray’s Café owner Leroy but with the pair of them seemingly broke where were they planning on getting the money from?

Next I check out the backrooms of Ray’s Café which leads to the discovery of an illegal poker room – so that’s how Leroy kept the money coming in. Meanwhile, on my way back to the car, I search the bar’s alley for clue and find a bloody knife – but this is a hit and run isn’t it? I bag it for evidence anyway much to my partner’s reluctance.

Next I run the partial plate and it seems we’re in luck, the car belongs to a Mr William Shelton; with partner in tow I make for Shelton’s place.

Location: Shelton Residence (7:43 am)

As I reach the home of William Shelton he’s rapidly filling the trunk of his incriminatingly dented car with luggage. As my partner and I approach he throws a suitcase at us, jumps into his car and speeds off; running back to our car we pursue, sirens blaring.

After a brief pursuit we force him off the road and arrest him. “The guy jumped out from nowhere” he maintains, pleading that this accident wasn’t his fault. Not impressed we bundle him into the back of the police car regardless.

Next we make for the Pattinson residence to inform the next of kin.

Location: Pattinson Residence (9:26 am)

A sheepish Lorna Pattinson opens the door and, merely a question into our interview, the reason for her guilty expression becomes apparent as Jay’s Café owner Leroy unashamedly interrupts proceedings having spent the night there. For shame!

Lorna tells us how her husband walked straight into the car but pressuring her (doubt) leads her to tell us how he was angry over losing at cards. She says they argued a lot and more pressure (doubt) sees her expand on this, even going so far as to suggest her husband wanted her to ‘earn’ him money through some of the other patrons.

We ask about the joint business venture between her and Leroy that the barman mentioned at the crime scene. She stonewalls but (lie) showing her the life insurance letter we found on her husband’s body has her back peddling, saying they were going to use Leroy’s capital – money we know he doesn’t have.

We leave the happy couple to it, only pausing to check-in with station. It seems the pathologist needs to speak to us urgently.

Location: Central Morgue

Briefly stopping by the morgue we speak to the pathologist to find that some of our assumptions have been wrong from the start. He says the victim was dead before the car even hit him, having already been stabbed in the chest twice. Good job I bagged that knife earlier and even better for the driver, Mr Shelton.

Before you can stab a guy twice in the chest, we’re roaring back to the Pattinson’s, siren sounding and no horse spared.

Location: Pattinson Residence

Mrs Pattinson again lets us in but this time the situation has changed dramatically. Looking into the house reveals Leroy holding a gun at Mrs P’s back. With her pleading that it was all Leroy’s fault she’s gunned down in front of us. I chase Leroy through the house and out on to the street, eventually cornering him. Quick as a flash he grabs a hostage, threatening to shoot if we don’t let him go. Calmly I fire twice,  one bullet hitting him square in the kneecap and the next finding his heart.

Leroy folds to the ground, the hostage is spared, but this hasn’t been the happiest of cases as one body turns into three. My boss is happy enough though and I’m quickly on to the next case.

Notes of interest:

Case notes reveal that ‘Another visit to Ray’s and you would have seen what Leroy was willing to do to avoid jail.’

I’ve no idea what that means – did he kill witness Shannon Perry or the barman Dudley Lynch? If you can shed light on that, or anything else, let us know…