18th November 2005 at 00:00
Puzzles to test mathematical skills, set by Anita Straker. Solutions below More brainteasers on

Usual suspects

Inspector Morse interviewed three suspects after a daytime robbery that he knew was a one-man job.

Morse also knew that each suspect told him one false and one truthful statement.

Slick Jim said: "It wasn't me. Burglar Bill didn't do it."

Burglar Bill said: "It wasn't me. And it wasn't Dodgy Dick."

Dodgy Dick said: "I didn't do it. And Slick Jim and Burglar Bill were at the races with me."

The Inspector knew immediately who the culprit was and arrested him. Who did the inspector arrest?

Star crazy

Use all the numbers 1 to 10.

Put one number in each empty circle.

Do it so that each line of numbers has a total of 26.

SOLUTIONS Usual suspects (Age 7-12) Morse arrested Burglar Bill. Assume that Slick Jim's statement that it wasn't him is false, so he is the burglar. His second statement must be true so Burglar bill didn't do it. In that case both the statements that Burglar Bill made, that it wasn't him and it wasn't Dodgy Dick, were both true, which is not possible. Assume that Slick Jim's first statement is true. So Burglar Bill did it. Burglar Bill's first statement, that it wasn't him, is therefore false, and his second statement, that it wasn't Dodgy Dick, is true. Dodgy Dick's first statement that it wasn't him is true, and his statement that they were all at the races is false. So Burglar Bill is the culprit.

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