An apparently elderly vagrant, who turns out to be closer to 55, is shot to death in an abandoned building where he was sleeping. He was Marcel Vivien, a man who twenty years earlier had been a married cabinetmaker, with an 8-year-old daugther. He'd withdrawn all his money from the bank one day and left his family without a word, having fallen in love with a 20-year old girl, Nina Lassave. When 6 months later he found she was deceiving him, he strangled her in a fit of rage. Due to insufficient evidence, no arrests were made. The other man, Louis Mahossier, had seen him leave the scene, and knew he had killed her. Twenty years pass, with Marcel Vivien living the life of a taciturn vagrant, when Mahossier stumbles across him by accident, and kills him as he had vowed he would. From a beginning with the murder of a nameless vagrant, Maigret puts together the pieces of the puzzle in under a week, helped by an anonymous caller and the memories of various elderly people in Montmartre.
This report prepared by Dana Samson