The Watcher who inspired Netflix series has never been identified

The Watcher: Naomi Watts stars in tense Netflix trailer

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The Watcher is on Netflix now and the true crime series is based on the life of Maria and Derek Broaddus. They were excited to meet their neighbours after moving into their new home in Westfield, New Jersey, in 2014. However, when they began receiving letters from an anonymous stalker, their lives changed forever. 

Has The Watcher been identified? 

Netflix’s latest true crime series follows a family who were driven out of their dream home after receiving numerous letters from a relentless stalker. 

The first of the letters arrived just as Derek Broaddus was making some changes to the home at 657 Boulevard before they moved in. 

The letter said: “Dearest new neighbor at 657 Boulevard, allow me to welcome you to the neighborhood.

“How did you end up here? Did 657 Boulevard call to you with its force within?”

“657 Boulevard has been the subject of my family for decades now and as it approaches its 110th birthday, I have been put in charge of watching and waiting for its second coming. 

“My grandfather watched the house in the 1920s and my father watched in the 1960s. It is now my time.

“Do you know the history of the house? Do you know what lies within the walls of 657 Boulevard? Why are you here? I will find out.”

The Watcher teased their identity but the family never came close to finding out who they really were. 

“Who am I?” the letter-writer continued. “There are hundreds and hundreds of cars that drive by 657 Boulevard each day.

“Maybe I am in one. Look at all the windows you can see from 657 Boulevard. Maybe I am in one.”

After a police investigation failed to deliver answers, the family called upon private detectives to help out. 

They explored all sorts of avenues regarding evidence but were never able to come up with a solid case. 

At this moment in time, The Watcher’s identity remains a mystery and has never been exposed. 

Despite investigations from the Westfield police department, the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, and the couple themselves, no answers have come to light. 

The investigation is not active but is still considered open, according to the Union County Prosecutor’s Office.


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The Watcher admitted to being “obsessed” with the home, saying they “pass by many times a day”.

They said in a letter: “657 Boulevard is my job, my life, my obsession. And now you are too … Welcome to the product of your greed!

“Greed is what brought the past three families to 657 Boulevard and now it has brought you to me.”

The family initially believed The Watcher could be one of their neighbours, Michael Langford, due to the location of his house and the vantage point he had. 

Police questioned him after the first letter was sent but he denied knowing anything and was struck off as a suspect. 

Too scared to ever actually move into their new home, they rented it out.

Eventually, the couple put the house up for sale and in 2019 it sold for $400,000 less than they had bought it for.

The Watcher is on Netflix now

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