10. The necessity for eliminating the little overlooked clues and loose threads
9. The false suspect
8. The cover up
7. The flight
6. The actual killing
5. The first irretrievable step
3. The plan
What is the murderer’s ladder without opportunity? Every detective moves forward on motive, means, and opportunity being the three supports to a murder.
The first irretrievable step being a leap, without timing or blending is another mark of the amateur murderer. Or this could be the plunge of a romantic murderer.