|AKA|| The Triple Killer|
|Cause of death||Shot by Javier Esposito|
| Significant |
|Kelly Nieman (girlfriend, deceased)|
|Parents||Gretchen Cutler (raised by)|
"Kick the Ballistics" (mentioned)
|Portrayed by||Michael Mosley|
Jerry Tyson aka The Triple Killer, or "3XK", is a serial killer whose M.O. is killing three blonde women in a week by strangulation and leaving them laying dead in their own apartments in the funeral position that made them look like they were sleeping (with the hands clasped in front of them), laying low for a month, then killing again.
Apparently, as a child, Jerry Tyson was raised by a single mother: a beautiful blonde who later didn't want him and eventually died. Bitter at being sent into uncaring foster care, he ends up becoming a serial killer by killing women who look like his mother as a way of 'getting back at her'.
Despite this, though, he still loves his mother and, as an homage to her, leaves his victims looking peaceful. Although this is merely speculation by Richard Castle and not confirmed by Jerry himself, although he does not deny it either. It was noted on his FBI profile, though, that he did have a dysfunctional relationship with his mother.
He began his killing spree in 2006 by claiming six lives. He learns the habits of his victims and gains their trust through different disguises, such as a security guard or cable repairman, to gain access to their apartments. Captain Montgomery was on the original task force to capture him. Richard Castle studied Tyson's original crime spree for his novel When It Comes to Slaughter.
On May 21, 2006, a week after his sixth murder, Linda Russo called the Triple Killer tip line and left an anonymous message, to report seeing a creepy cable repairman who wasn't carrying the right tools. Given that Linda was working for a cable company, she realized he was in disguise. With this, Jerry realized that she made him and that she saw his face, so he arranged for himself to get caught on a minor drug charge to throw suspicion off himself.
While imprisoned, he met a fellow sociopath named Marcus Gates and spent the next four years as cellmates exchanging stories. He later makes a deal with Marcus so that he will be completely free of suspicion: when Marcus is released, he will pretend to be the Triple Killer by using Jerry's M.O., and in return, Jerry will pay for the heart operation of Marcus's foster brother, Paul McCradle.
After the arrangement is made, Marcus begins his killing spree by first killing the one person that can identify Jerry as a person of interest: Linda Russo. Since Linda would have recognized the real triple killer, Jerry arranges for Marcus to change his M.O. on Linda by killing her outside, contrary to his usual apartment killings. This is to make the investigators believe that he killed her outside since, if he recognizes Jerry, she would not have let him into her apartment.
Marcus' next killing is one that follows in Jerry's footsteps perfectly, and even leaves a small piece of evidence to get the police interested in him. Beckett eventually goes to question Jerry in prison, unaware that he is the real Triple Killer, to ask where Marcus would hang out. Jerry tells them that Marcus liked to hang out at a bar.
The team assembles there and Marcus comes out. They arrest him and bring him in for questioning at the station. Beckett starts to interview Marcus and he is very calm and unconcerned with everything she is asking. She shows pictures of the victims and he denies knowing any of them. She tells Marcus that they are searching his home and he should tell her if they are going to find any suspicious. He says that he will wait until they can prove it with a warrant. However, they do not have enough to hold him, and Marcus walks right out the front door and tells the team to watch over their loved ones.
Back in prison, Jerry rolls on Marcus and makes a deal. They get him out of prison and Ryan sits with Jerry, who, still playing the wimp, asks why they can't arrest Marcus already. Jerry mentions that Marcus has a partner. This leads them to find out that Paul McCardle is the partner. They track down Donna, Jerry's girlfriend and Beckett tells Esposito to go to her quickly. Inside he finds Marcus trying to kill Donna. Esposito asks him how he is going to get out of this one.
At the station, Marcus confesses to all eight murders, when he actually only killed two, in exchange for Paul to get full immunity. Later, Castle and Ryan go to where Jerry is staying and tell him about Marcus' confession and his arrest. Castle picks up on Jerry's reaction when he reacts coldly about his girlfriend being okay, and eventually realizes that he's the real killer. But before he and Ryan can react, he knocks them out and ties them both up and steals Ryan's gun. Jerry makes his escape and leaves Castle and Ryan for the police to find after he tells Castle that his future victims are going to be Castle's fault. ("3XK")
Sometime after disappearing he gave Det. Ryan's stolen gun to Philip Lee, an enemy who he made during his four years in prison, knowing that the ballistic will be an instant hit on police computers, and trusting that this will take the cops off on a wild goose chase since they will (and do) assume that it is 3XK still using the gun. He likewise "let slip" his plans to Philip, on the assumption that Philip would try to cut a deal and pass the info on to the cops, but this is a bluff which the poker-playing Castle sees coming, and Philip's offer of information is declined and he gets no deal. Captain Gates states that they will "track down Jerry Tyson like the animal he is, and haul him into custody". ("Kick the Ballistics")
Tyson returns in the fifth season seemingly to get revenge on Castle for ruining his four-year plan to vanish and continue killing. It is mentioned that he has had Castle under surveillance, even going as far as being able to enter his loft with no trace to obtain fingerprints. He planted Castle's fingerprints at the murder scene of Tessa Horton using latex fingers and placed a deleted file in his hard drive that perfectly describes the murder. He also staged a look-alike contest to hire someone to impersonate Castle in a jewelry store to be caught on surveillance. The diamond earring purchased at the store was later found in the victim's apartment. The final stroke was planting the exact tools used in restraining and killing Horton in Castle's loft.
He was able to infiltrate the precinct to reveal himself to a detained Castle without being caught on surveillance. Jerry states that he has people waiting for Castle in prison, assigned to kill him when he arrives. Castle later escapes as a fugitive and with Beckett and the team's help was able to find proof of 3XK's involvement. As Beckett and Castle drive back to the precinct they are attacked by Tyson on the bridge. While he holds Beckett at gunpoint, urging Castle to reveal himself and watch as he kills her, Castle manages to shoot Tyson several times and the latter ends up falling off the bridge to his apparent death. The body cannot be found the next morning and Castle deduces that 3XK's entire plan was to have Castle seemingly kill him on the bridge and then disappear, free to kill again. ("Probable Cause")
In the sixth season episode "Disciple", a murderer is killing victims that have a frightening resemblance to the members of the NYPD family. It is later revealed that the victims have been altered, both medically, and through the help of speech therapy to alter the male victim's accent, in order to look and sound like Lanie and Esposito. As expected, this affects the whole team, mainly Lanie and Esposito, the episode's flow bearing a striking resemblance to season 5's Probable Cause.
As Castle begins to theorize the possibility of 3XK being a part of this, Beckett and Castle go to get the records only to find the files of every 3XK murder and profile removed, taken out by 'Esposito' three days ago, and the medical results, tissues, samples and other such items removed by 'Lanie'. Because an infiltration of the NYPD is a serious issue, as well as the fact that 3XK might actually be alive, contrary to the NYPD records, Gates instructs Beckett not to make it official that 3XK is back until she has solid evidence to save the precinct from the embarrassment of stuffing up twice.
It is not until the end of the episode when, after recovering a USB embedded in a pen, that a song "We'll Meet Again" message begin to play through Castle's laptop, ending any doubts to Beckett and Castle that Tyson is in fact back.
Working with Doctor Kelly Nieman in "Resurrection" and "Reckoning", Tyson returns, with Nieman now helping him 'cultivate' victims who will explicitly resemble his mother when she was younger, allowing him to complete his main 'goal' of killing his mother over and over.
Despite their certainty that they have found Tyson, the team are unable to prove his identity, with Tyson claiming to be a truck driver who just happened to have plastic surgery to look like himself. While Tyson and Nieman are being interrogated, one of their associates kidnaps Beckett and the squad rushes to save her, Tyson constantly playing with them such as capturing a prostitute with a slight similarity to Beckett so that she can be killed just as the team finds her.
With Nieman preparing to give Beckett unwilling plastic surgery so that she will be killed wearing Nieman's face, Tyson captures Castle after Castle visits Gates in prison to find a new lead. However, Castle reveals that his abduction was a set-up: he knew that the only way to find Tyson and Beckett was to let Tyson kidnap him. Rather than going rogue as Tyson predicted, Castle had an earpiece the whole time connecting him to Esposito who was waiting outside with a sniper rifle.
After Castle ordered Esposito to take the shot, Tyson turned to the window, but was too late as Esposito shot him in the abdomen. In his final moments, Tyson tried to shoot Castle, but died before he could. Castle and Ryan are able to use his cellphone to find Nieman's number and track her down, arriving in time to find that Beckett had saved herself and killed Nieman.
(All of the people who Tyson was in league with who assisted his disappearing act and had killed his victims for him)
- Marcus Gates (first proxy)
- Paul McCardle (foster brother of Gates)
- Philip Lee (former enemy of Tyson)
- Carl Matthews (second proxy)
- Kelly Nieman (Tyson's girlfriend)
- Amy Barrett (patient of Nieman)
(All of his victims were strangled in their own apartment.)
- Possibly twenty-six unnamed victims
- Rachel Gold
- Sara Townsend
- Emma Kuener
- Lauren Brackett
- Sheri Ort
- Melanie Sherman
- Tessa Horton (Atypical MO; not a blonde, and she was hung from the ceiling and her head carved with an alchemical symbol. This was part of a complex attempt to frame Castle for the murder.)
- Susan Watts (manually strangled in an alley)
- Sydney Novak (Atypical MO; not a blonde, and she was rigged to a remote-controlled shotgun which later shot and killed her after the police arrived. She was selected because of her facial similarities to Beckett.)
- Kate Beckett (Attempted to kill while being held hostage; Tyson was shot by Esposito before he could)
Victims by Proxy
The following were either targeted by Marcus Gates or Carl Matthews orders were given by Jerry or killed because of circumstances arranged by Tyson
- Linda Russo (Strangled by Marcus in an alleyway)
- Kim Foster (Strangled by Marcus in her own apartment)
- Donna Gallager (Marcus attempted to strangle in her own apartment; was rescued)
- Jane Herzfeld (Shot to death by Philip Lee with the gun given to him by Tyson)
- Two unnamed women (Strangled by Carl)
- Pamela Hodges (Strangled by Carl)
- Daniel Santos (Strangled by Carl)
- ↑ Was Jerry's father's girlfriend who kept Jerry until he was 9