Brooklyn Nine-Nine Wiki

Melvin "Vin" Stermley is a puzzle maker of crossword puzzles for newspaper publications. His puzzles are mostly featured on Saturdays. When he's not working as a puzzle maker, he's modeling swimwear.

Throughout the Series[]

Season Five[]

In The Puzzle Master, Melvin comes to the 99th Precinct due to a serial arson case where the fires seem to be connected to his Saturday crossword puzzles — two different buildings, two consecutive Saturdays, and a puzzle left at each crime scene with a note was addressed to him, the puzzles' author. He meets Detectives Amy Santiago and Jake Peralta.

To start figuring out who might be behind the crimes, Det. Santiago suggests to Stermley that they start looking at anagrams of the answers for possible clues. After coming up with numerous results, Det. Peralta wants to try something else and suggests a new, different idea. Stermley invites the two detectives to a crossword night that he'll be hosting later that night.

During the event, Det. Peralta tells Stermley — based on overhearing a bathroom conversation — that the arsonist might be another puzzle maker, Sam Jepsen. Stermley disagrees, providing information that Jepsen wasn't in town and therefore an existing alibi; and also that they are close friends, so there's no animosity and therefore no motive.

Stermley thinks that the arsonist is trying to spell out his name, saying people who make crosswords love hiding their names in their puzzles. So since the first two incidents already spelled the letters "MA," the next day Vin designed that day's puzzle using only one of each of the letters "L," "X," "R," and "T" based on the most-common third letter needed to spell names.

Det. Peralta ended up figuring out that the arsonist was a woman who was trying to spell out, "Marry..." which is another word for "Conjugate." So, Vin returns to the Precinct to learn that he has a stalker who was trying to send him the message: "Marry me, or else I will kill you. Yours forever, Helen Gorbelson."


  • Doesn't drink coffee. Prefers Kombucha.
  • Body heat runs hot, like a wolf.
  • Favorite part of speech are prepositions. Second favorite part are verbs.
  • Had dated pro tennis player Anna Kournikova, but they broke up.
  • He is played by Melissa Fumero's actual husband.