Richard “Richie” Novak’s charm let him get away with
murder, literally. As a teenager, Richie caused an accident that left
his father, Walter Novak deaf. His sister, Annie Novak, lied on the stand
to get Richie sent to prison to protect her family. In the end, his mother,
Emma Novak, killed herself, and Annie was disowned from the Novak family.
In prison, Richie used his charm to arrange for an early release. He found
out he was dying of leukemia. He took out a life insurance policy and
put it in the name of his warden. The warden in turn arranged for Richie’s
early release. Richie quickly made his way to Pine Valley, the little
town Annie was calling home.
Richie got a job at The Comeback as a bartender. To keep his anonymity,
he went by the name Wes. He began to romance Babe Carey, all the while
secretly terrorizing Annie. Richie an Babe went on a picnic with her son,
Adam Chandler, and Annie’s daughter, Emma Lavery. When Annie put
two and two together, she launched a frantic search for her missing daughter.
Annie’s husband, Ryan Lavery, and Aidan Devane took Richie to a
back alley to interrogate him. Richie hung himself so as to gain sympathy
for the authorities and paint Ryan and Aidan in a bad light.
Richie stole JR Chandler, Babe’s ex-husband’s, car to flea
Pine Valley. On the way out of town, he ran over Zach Slater. He took
Zach’s body and dumped it in a bomb shelter. A few days later, Greenlee
duPres found the shelter. Richie trapped both of them inside. Then, he
planted JR’s car back in Pine Valley to make it appear as if he
had committed the murder. Richie hoped that painting JR in a bad light
would make him more favorable to Babe.
2008: Richie found out JR was a perfect match for a bone
marrow transplant, a transplant that could save his life. Knowing very
well JR would never voluntarily agree to be a donor, Richie hatched a
plot to secure his cooperation. Richie drugged JR. He then arranged for
a prostitute to pretend to have slept with JR so as to make it appear
as if he was on another destructive bender. All the while, JR was facing
litigation for his supposed role in last year’s hit and run.
What Ritchie did not expect was Babe turning on him. Babe launched an
investigation into the night JR supposedly fell off the wagon. The prostitute
turned on Richie. He was taken into custody, but was granted bail after
the Richie cornered Annie on the stand into admitting to perjury in relation
to his prior offenses.
Richie secured his bail from Annie by agreeing to get rid of Greenlee
once and for all for Annie. Annie’s jealousy for Ryan’s continued
relationship with Greenlee had driven her to the point of insanity. Free
again, Richie turned on his sister, and instead kidnapped Babe. The ladies
of FUSION tracked Richie down to a cabin to save Babe.
Realizing she had the most to loose if the truth came out, Annie bludgeoned
Richie with a crowbar. She left Richie in the middle of the road to die.
Later, Cassandra Foster, Dre Woods and Colby Chandler accidentally drove
over him. They too became suspects in his murder.
Richie’s ghost haunted Annie. His presence in her mind sunk her
into a mentally unstable state.