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Phyllis Roy interview

Tuesday, August 28, 2012 - 1:30 p.m.

Phyllis Roy was Courtney Morris's neighbor and had a good view of the comings and goings at Courtney's apartment. Detectives Murphy and Parker interviewed her at Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department. The interview was recorded with the witness's knowledge and consent.

Participants:

  • Detective S. Murphy
  • Detective E. Parker
  • Phyllis Roy

Detective Murphy: Hello, Mrs. Roy. How are you today?

Phyllis Roy: Please call me Phyllis. I'm doing as well as can be expected. I'm just heartbroken over poor Courtney.

Detective Murphy: Yes, ma'am. Would you please tell us your name and address for the record?

Phyllis Roy: Of course, I will. I'm Phyllis Rand Roy, and I live at the Maplewood Apartments, #103.

Detective Murphy: How long have you lived there?

Phyllis Roy: About five years now.

Detective Parker: What do you think about Craig Albright? Is he a good manager for the apartments?

Phyllis Roy: Craig is a good man. He's not always so good with people, but he does a great job and he has a kind heart.

Detective Parker: Do you know how Courtney Morris felt about Mr. Albright?

Phyllis Roy: As a matter of fact, I do. She thought he was precious, and she always went out of her way to make him feel comfortable. She was a good girl. She made desserts for Craig and for me. She had respect for her elders, unlike a lot of the younger people these days.

Detective Murphy: Speaking of Craig, he mentioned something about a disturbance the night before Courtney died. Do you know anything about that?

Phyllis Roy: Oh my, yes. There was some young man outside our building yelling in the middle of the night.

Detective Murphy: About what time was that?

Phyllis Roy: I don't have any idea. I was asleep when he started raising a ruckus.

Detective Murphy: Do you know who the man was?

Phyllis Roy: I was afraid to look. I didn't want him to see me.

Detective Murphy: You said he was yelling. Did you recognize his voice?

Phyllis Roy: No. He sounded drunk, bless his heart. I couldn't understand anything he said.

Detective Murphy: Do you know who he was yelling at?

Phyllis Roy: Not for sure. I thought it might be Courtney.

Detective Murphy: Why?

Phyllis Roy: I don't know. With him being drunk and acting crazy like that, I assumed he was young, so I thought he might know Courtney. It was just a feeling. Like I told you, I didn't see him.

Detective Murphy: Did you do anything about it?

Phyllis Roy: I called Craig. I knew he'd take care of it.

Detective Murphy: And did he?

Phyllis Roy: He must have. The boy went away.

Detective Murphy: Why didn't you call 911?

Phyllis Roy: Oh, I didn't want to get the boy in trouble. He was obviously upset. You know how they feel things so intensely at that age. I didn't want him to get arrested just for acting the fool over a girl.

Detective Murphy: Was he doing anything other than yelling?

Phyllis Roy: Like what?

Detective Murphy: Hitting things? Being physically violent in any way?

Phyllis Roy: Not that I heard.

Detective Murphy: Do you know if Courtney responded to him in any way? Talked to him or invited him into her apartment?

Phyllis Roy: I don't think so. She was smarter than that, poor girl.

Detective Parker: Did you see Courtney this past weekend?

Phyllis Roy: Yes, I sure did. I saw her shaking her rugs around 7:30 a.m. on the morning they found her dead. I was getting my newspaper, and we waved at each other.

Detective Murphy: Was that the only time you saw her?

Phyllis Roy: No, I saw her again when the flowers were delivered.

Detective Parker: You saw who brought the flowers? Can you describe them or tell us what florist shop they were from?

Phyllis Roy: All I can tell you is that it was a young woman. She had a cap on. She set the flower box down in front of the door, knocked and left.

Detective Murphy: She didn't wait for Courtney to answer the door?

Phyllis Roy: Nope. I saw Courtney open the door, look down and look around, and then she picked the box up and went back inside.

Detective Murphy: How did she react to the flowers?

Phyllis Roy: She was happy. She smiled when she saw the box. It's not every day a girl gets long stemmed roses.

Detective Murphy: You saw the flowers?

Phyllis Roy: No, but I saw the box. What else would it be? It was roses, wasn't it?

Detective Parker: Did you see anyone else at her apartment that day?

Phyllis Roy: Yes, I did. I saw the older fella who visits a lot, and I saw her boyfriend.

Detective Parker: Can you tell us who the older man is or describe him?

Phyllis Roy: I don't know who he is, but I see him a lot, usually early in the morning. He got there right after the flowers were delivered, maybe 15 minutes later.

Detective Parker: Can you describe him, Phyllis?

Phyllis Roy: He's is about 6'3. I would say in his late 30s or early 40s. His hair was dark, but it had some silver in it. He was an attractive man. I asked Courtney about him once, but she just said he was a relative. I assumed he was an uncle.

Detective Murphy: How often did you see him visit Courtney?

Phyllis Roy: He comes by two or three times a week usually.

Detective Murphy: Always at the same time?

Phyllis Roy: Well, I don't know to the minute, but it was usually in the mornings.

Detective Murphy: How long has he been doing that?

Phyllis Roy: Oh, ever since Courtney moved in last year.

Detective Murphy: Did Courtney ever have any other visitors while he was there?

Phyllis Roy: Not that I can recall, but don't hold me to that. I don't know that for sure.

Detective Murphy: I understand. How long did his visits typically last?

Phyllis Roy: Oh, he usually stayed an hour or two, I would think. Sometimes shorter. Sometimes longer.

Detective Parker: And how long was he there on Sunday?

Phyllis Roy: That I do not know. My grandson came to visit about 9:00, so I was in the kitchen visiting with him. Dylan, my grandson, comes over every Sunday. He had a crush on Courtney. He doesn't think I know, but it was obvious. So he comes on Sunday because he knew he could catch glimpses of her then and maybe even run into her.

Detective Murphy: Did Courtney know about his crush?

Phyllis Roy: Oh, yes. She was no fool. She knew when a man liked her. Or a boy, in this case. She wasn't interested, of course, but she was very nice about it.

Detective Parker: How long did Dylan visit you this past Sunday?

Phyllis Roy: He left around lunchtime, said he had something to do.

Detective Parker: How old is Dylan?

Phyllis Roy: Just a baby, only 18.

Detective Parker: You said you saw her boyfriend on Sunday. Do you know him?

Phyllis Roy: Oh, yes. Nice young man. Justin something. Plays football.

Detective Parker: What time did he get there?

Phyllis Roy: He got there right as Dylan was leaving. I think it upset Dylan because he was hoping to see Courtney.

Detective Parker: How long was Justin there?

Phyllis Roy: I'm not sure. Maybe half an hour? Maybe more? It's not like I was keeping track or anything like that.

Detective Murphy: Did you see anyone else?

Phyllis Roy: After Justin left, I laid down for my nap. I guess any one of them could have returned or maybe a stranger came? Oh, I wish I hadn't taken a nap that day. I woke up when Mee-Yon and Craig went into Courtney's apartment. I heard Mee-Yon scream. This is so awful. I'm getting a sick headache. Can I please go home now?

Detective Murphy: We're almost done. You mentioned Mee-Yon. Do you know her?

Phyllis Roy: She's Courtney's best friend. She came over all the time.

Detective Parker: Do you remember the last time you saw her, before Sunday afternoon?

Phyllis Roy: She came over Saturday evening around 6:30 or so. She and Courtney went out together a little while after that.

Detective Parker: Do you know when they came back?

Phyllis Roy: It must have been after I went to bed.

Detective Parker: When was that?

Phyllis Roy: About 10:00 p.m.

Detective Parker: OK. Thank you so much for your time, Phyllis. We really appreciate it.

Phyllis Roy: You're welcome, sweetie. I hope you catch whoever did this awful thing. I will continue to pray for your department. God bless you both.

Detective Murphy: You too, Phyllis.

Interview ends - 1:56 p.m.

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