Attempted Murder, Once Again

Dear S:

Thanks for your kind words.

I assume the poison would work. Please do so. Then, do you agree with me that both are murderers, and that there was no attempted murder?

Best regards,


From: S

Sent: Friday, January 04, 2019 2:00 PM


Subject: Murder, Attempted Murder?

Thanks for the interesting puzzle. I always read your postings.  This is my opinion. Seems very simple.

Person died from dehydration, and not from poisoning.

If the water was still available – we do not know 100% what would have happened.

Person may have not died instantly.

He could have gotten very sick, but survived

He could have made it to the hospital, and be saved by doctors

He could have discovered the poison, and then take some actions, i.e. filtered the water, use some medication, etc

He could have died from poison too, but he did not.

And to make things even less convincing about X’s guilt  – water and poison are gone now. There is no proof that the poison was there, or that concentration was lethal.

X could make a mistake or miscalculation

X attempted to kill, and failed. Attempted murder.

Y attempted to kill and succeeded. Murder

Let’s take a similar scenario:

X takes an aim and shoots several rounds at the person

Little he knows that at the same time Y is speeding his car to hit and kill the victim.

Several rounds hit Y’s car, and do not hurt the victim.

Y succeeds with his assassination attempt, hits and kills the victim.

Now Y tries to convince the judge that the victim would have died from bullets anyway. So X deserves to go to prison, and Y should get a probation.

Judge rightfully disagrees. Bullets could have killed the victim, or not. They could miss him completely. Or just injure him. Y’s car killed the victim.

X – attempted murder.

Y – murder.



1:27 am on April 25, 2019