A True Crime Whodunit in the Australian Outback

Larrimah is a small town in the Northern Territory at the terminus of the North Australia Railway. How small is it? It had a population of 13 people, including 70-year-old Paddy Moriarty, who spent most of his time drinking beer at the Pink Panther pub.  

Paddy took his place at the bar, filled with bric-a-brac and kitsch Australiana. On any given day, Paddy chatted with regulars and tourists who stopped by to have a drink or a bite to eat, or to get a glimpse of the croc. Some Larrimah residents would describe Paddy himself as an attraction at the pub, spinning yarns from his time on the ranches and greeting arriving tourists with a hearty, “G’day folks, where ya from?”

And so it was on that sweltering day, December 16, 2017, that Paddy sat down to nurse a series of cold XXXX Golds in his koozie — beers, it turned out, that would be his last. Paddy Moriarty and his dog were about to vanish without a trace, kicking off an investigation that would turn the town upside down and spark international media coverage. Initial concern for his wellbeing soon gave way to darker rumors of murder.

In this town — now down to 12 residents — everyone was a possible suspect.

Since no trace of Paddy nor his dog were ever found, the case was considered a murder. The clues were scant, but Paddy's history involved a menagerie with a crocodile, meat pies, a poisoned garden, and roadkill kangaroos. Was it the jealous bartender? Was it the tea house owner who feuded with Paddy for years? Was it the reclusive gardener she depended on for protection? Read the story of the missing man from Larrimah at Medium. -via Damn Interesting

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