Narratively’s True Detectives: Our 7 Best Unsolved Mysteries

A serial cat killer is on the loose, the KGB is in Brooklyn, and somebody stole $50,000 worth of Kentucky's best bourbon - just some of the mind-bending whodunnit tales from our archive.

1. Who Killed Heather Broadus?

By Bojana Sandic

Nancy Smith places a magnetic poster asking for information related to the death of her daughter, Heather Broadus.
Photo by Jonathan Pobre

It’s been three and a half years since Nancy Smith’s daughter turned up dead on the streets of Long Beach. She’s canvassed the neighborhood and learned disturbing details of her daughter’s secret life. But she still has no answers.

2. The Russian Spy Who Painted Brooklyn Red

By Robert Silverman

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Illustration by Zach Worton

The papers called him a master spy, an identity-shifting KGB colonel dispatched to mid-century America to lead a vast network of espionage. My father called him a friend.

3. The Greatest Bourbon Ever Stolen

By Todd South

bourbon
Image courtesy MEL Magazine

When $50,000 worth of Kentucky’s most coveted bourbon suddenly goes missing, a few determined detectives spend years trying to crack the case of the AWOL alcohol.

4. Grief Has No Deadline

By Jocelyn Y. Stewart

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Illustration by Josh Simmons

She spent two decades as a local reporter covering L.A.’s grisliest crimes. But when one bullet strikes too close to home, she learns what hard news feels like from the other side.

5. The Sultan of Spatter

By Blake Morris

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Illustration by Ben Juers

Dr. Donald Johnson has spent his career making crime scene blood stains spill their secrets. His next mission: bringing forensic science into the iPad age.

6. The Misplaced Wallet and The Year of Delightful Deception

By Rick Andrews

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Illustration by Corrine Mucha

A college student is befuddled and amazed when his lost-and-then-found wallet leads to a theatrical treasure hunt complete with hollowed-out library books, a disappearing magician and an unforgettable year of campy one-upmanship.

7. How to Catch a Cat Killer

By Chris Newens

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Photo by Hanna Katrina Jedrosz

A serial pet-murderer is terrorizing London’s suburbs, brutally slaughtering hordes of defenseless kitties. A pair of amateur private detectives is determined to crack the case.