Wednesday, March 12, 2014 - 10:00 a.m.
LaDonna Kitterman had an encounter with Jerry Shaw not long before his death. She was also one of the nurse's aides who cared for former Yoknapatawpha Acres resident Rose Jenkins. Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed Ms. Kitterman at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department. The interview was recorded with the witness's knowledge and consent.
- Detective T. Armstrong
- Detective S. Murphy
- LaDonna Kitterman
Detective Murphy: Thanks for coming in. Please state your name and address for the record.
LaDonna Kitterman: LaDonna Kitterman, 1198 Pleasant Drive, Oxford.
Detective Armstrong: LaDonna, remember when we talked before?
LaDonna Kitterman: Yes.
Detective Armstrong: Remember when you said that Jerry Shaw "was so not your type"?
LaDonna Kitterman: Yes.
Detective Armstrong: Was that the truth?
LaDonna Kitterman: Yes.
Detective Armstrong: Well, then I'm confused. Because someone told us they saw you and Jerry coming out of a closet together and that your face was flushed like the two of you were up to something in there.
LaDonna Kitterman: Oh.
Detective Armstrong: You want to tell us what was really going on between you and Jerry?
LaDonna Kitterman: It's really no big deal.
Detective Armstrong: Then just tell us what happened.
LaDonna Kitterman: It's embarrassing.
Detective Murphy: We're not going to judge you, but we need to hear what happened.
LaDonna Kitterman: Well, I was in the storage closet at the nurses station, and all of a sudden there was someone right behind me. I didn't even hear him come in. I swear.
Detective Murphy: OK. And what happened?
LaDonna Kitterman: I turned around to see who it was, and Jerry tried to kiss me.
Detective Murphy: What did you do?
LaDonna Kitterman: I tried to push him off, but he's pretty strong so I kind of screamed, I guess.
Detective Murphy: Did anyone hear you?
LaDonna Kitterman: No one ever mentioned it, so I don't think so.
Detective Murphy: And then what happened?
LaDonna Kitterman: Then he told me to calm down. He said he wasn't doing anything I didn't want, and he sort of backed me up against the shelves.
Detective Murphy: He pushed you?
LaDonna Kitterman: No, he just– Jerry's a big guy, you know? I was trying to get away from him, and he was moving and I was moving, and I just ended up with my back against the shelves. I don't really know how it happened.
Detective Murphy: That's OK. Go ahead.
LaDonna Kitterman: I told him I was going to report him for sexual harassment. He just smiled and tried to kiss me again, so I slapped him.
Detective Murphy: How did he react to that?
LaDonna Kitterman: He said, "I like my women feisty," and then he smiled again like he was proud of himself. I acted like I was going to hit him again, and he sort of ducked, and I was able to get past him.
Detective Murphy: Was that the end of it?
LaDonna Kitterman: Yeah. When I got out of the closet, I told him he better watch himself or somebody would make him pay for being such a jerk. Did someone hear me say that? Is that why you're asking about this?
Detective Murphy: Was this the first time Jerry made a pass at you?
LaDonna Kitterman: Listen, he was a pig. He said disgusting things to me. He slapped me on the bottom a time or two. But nothing like that day in the storage closet. I was really scared that day.
Detective Murphy: Did you report him for sexual harassment?
LaDonna Kitterman: No. That day, I just wanted to get out of there. Then I was off the next day. And then Jerry was, you know, dead.
Detective Armstrong: Why did you keep this from us?
LaDonna Kitterman: I was afraid. I knew it would make me stand out like a sore thumb, and I wanted to stay out of it as much as possible.
Detective Armstrong: Some people might think it makes you look guilty. Like you're only telling us now because you think someone else already did. That's not the behavior of an innocent person.
LaDonna Kitterman: I didn't kill Jerry. You have to believe me!
Detective Armstrong: We already know that you lie. We usually don't believe liars.
LaDonna Kitterman: I didn't lie. I just left out some stuff when I talked to you. You know everything now. There really is nothing else. I swear.
Detective Murphy: OK. Let's see. Let's talk about something else for a minute. Did you ever take care of Rose Jenkins?
LaDonna Kitterman: Oh, yeah. But you know she's gone now, right?
Detective Murphy: Gone?
LaDonna Kitterman: Oh, no! I mean, she moved out yesterday, not… you know.
Detective Murphy: Do you know why she moved out?
LaDonna Kitterman: I, um… I think her daughter wanted her closer to where she lives.
Detective Murphy: You don't sound too sure about that. Could there have been another reason?
LaDonna Kitterman: Another reason?
Detective Murphy: Yes, another reason.
LaDonna Kitterman: I'm not supposed to talk about the patients' care. I don't want to lose my job.
Detective Murphy: So Rose Jenkins moved out because of something related to her care?
LaDonna Kitterman: I could get in really big trouble
Detective Armstrong: LaDonna, if you know something and don't tell us, that's only going to mean more trouble for you later.
LaDonna Kitterman: She had these bedsores. They were really bad. I guess her daughter found out.
Detective Armstrong: Did you do anything about the bedsores?
LaDonna Kitterman: When I first saw them, I went to tell Natalie, but when I got to the office, she wasn't in there. But Mr. Landrigan was, so I told him.
Detective Murphy: What did he say?
LaDonna Kitterman: He told me I wasn't a doctor and I didn't know what I was talking about.
Detective Murphy: And that was the end of it?
LaDonna Kitterman: No, I told him I did know, and he said if I was right, then it was my fault because she was my responsibility. He said if I told anyone else, they'd see how incompetent I was, and then he'd have no choice but to reevaluate my continued employment. That's how he put it: "no choice but to reevaluate my continued employment."
Detective Armstrong: Was it your fault?
LaDonna Kitterman: No! We're supposed to move the bedridden patients every two hours, but there are so many of them and not enough of us.
Detective Armstrong: So you didn't do anything to help Rose Jenkins? You didn't tell someone else at Yoknapatawpha Acres? You didn't tell her daughter? You didn't call the Health Department?
LaDonna Kitterman: I couldn't. I would've gotten fired.
Detective Armstrong: Unbelievable.
Detective Murphy: LaDonna, everything we've talked about today is part of our ongoing investigation, so we'd like you to keep it to yourself and not discuss it with anyone else.
Detective Armstrong: That shouldn't be a problem.
LaDonna Kitterman: Are you going to arrest me?
Detective Armstrong: Not today.
LaDonna Kitterman: Can I go?
Detective Murphy: Yes. We'll let you know if we have any more questions.
Detective Armstrong: You can count on it.
Interview ends - 10:31 a.m.