Austin tween detective duo cracks cases
Two Austin preteens are determined to find your missing receipt.
Driving the news: Over the weekend we spotted this sign posted to a South Austin telephone pole — "intrepid tween detectives … the investigators who solve your mysteries" — and wanted desperately to know more.
- Who were these sleuths?
- What sorts of cases do they solve?
- Could they find my keys?
Meet Maddie Baehr, 9, and Louisa Haynes, 10 (who will turn 11 in about three weeks) — friends from the private Long-View Micro School on West 24th Street.
- They go by the names Bouldin Creek Investigators and Tarrytown Investigators.
What they're saying: "We really like solving crimes, any kind of cases, and we decided we want to put that to good use," Baehr, a third grader who lives in Tarrytown, told Axios.
- "I really like finding stuff when things are lost and going on the hunt for them," she added.
- "People have problems that need solving that aren't huge deals like murder mysteries that people might not want to go to the police for," Haynes, a fifth grader who lives in Bouldin, told Axios.
Between the lines: The pair has solved one big case so far.
- Haynes' mother lost her $112 receipt for some H&M clothes she wanted to return.
- This was at the Domain — it was a blustery day, and the receipt had "blown out of her pocket somehow," Haynes says.
- A born gumshoe, her daughter retraced their steps — as they say in the trade — and discovered the document.
- Plus: At school they have determined the identity of two other kids who sent and received "a weird sticky note" found in the library — "let's move on to Plan B," it said, ominously.
By the numbers: As the private detectives build up their client base, they're sticking with a relatively inexpensive business model to attract and retain clients.
- The rate is $5 — per case.
Of note: To be licensed as a private investigator in Texas, you must be 18 years of age or older with no criminal history.
- Yes, but: Just try detailing state beverage regulations to all those precocious lemonade stand operators.
- Also: The duo could add an edgy third business name: Unlicensed Investigators.
What's next: A potential client has contacted them about a cross-light button "that makes a horrible clacking noise and could be demonic," Haynes told Axios.
More Austin stories
No stories could be found
Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Austin.