Sunday, December 13, 1987 - 3:00 PM
The witness is the victim’s roommate and was interviewed at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff’s Department. The interview was conducted by Detective Nelson and was recorded on a portable tape recorder with the witness' knowledge and consent
- Detective Terrence Nelson
- Nick Crosby
Detective Nelson: Thanks for coming in today.
Nick Crosby: You said you found Kevin.
Detective Nelson: We’ll get to that. Can you state your name and address for the record?
Nick Crosby: Nick Crosby. 230 Kinard Hall. That’s the athletic dorm on campus.
Detective Nelson: Okay. When did you last see Kevin?
Nick Crosby: He’s not here?
Detective Nelson: Not exactly.
Nick Crosby: Did he get sick?
Detective Nelson: Sick how?
Nick Crosby: He has diabetes. He’s careful but maybe, I thought, I don’t know, something happened and he ended up here, or he blacked out while he was driving. Did he get hurt?
Detective Nelson: No, Nick. I’m sorry to tell you this, but Kevin is dead.
Nick Crosby: Dead?
Detective Nelson: Now, I need you –
Nick Crosby: Wait. Are you sure it was him? I mean, how do you know? This has to be a mistake.
Detective Nelson: I’m afraid not.
Nick Crosby: Right, the medical bracelet. You would see his name on the bracelet. Shit. I mean, this can’t be true. This--it has to be a mistake.
Detective Nelson: Whoa, slow down. Do you want to take a minute?
Nick Crosby: No.Yeah. Do you mind? Can we stop?
Detective Nelson: Okay. Are you ready?
Nick Crosby: Yes. I think so. What happened? How did he die?
Detective Nelson: We’re investigating the situation. That’s all I can say right now.
Nick Crosby: Right. I’m sorry. I mean, I guess it makes sense. When he missed practice Friday and then he missed the game, I mean, I figured--I thought his parents came up--picked him up because he was sick or something.
Detective Nelson: How did you meet Kevin?
Nick Crosby: Meet? Oh, right. I’m sorry. Kevin and I are roommates, and we--we’re both on the team together, the basketball team. We’re both on scholarship, so that’s how we’re able to room together.
Detective Nelson: I thought you said Kevin had diabetes.
Nick Crosby: He does. Did. Shit. Did. He obviously didn’t have the kind from being fat, but it was type one, I think. He always had to watch what he ate.
Detective Nelson: Did he talk a lot about it?
Nick Crosby: No. Not really. He told the coaches, obviously, and me – he had to inject himself every day, so I knew right away. But not everyone on the team knew. He didn’t want to be judged or treated different, you know, taken out of games. He had a thing about getting fair treatment.
Detective Nelson: So was he a starter? A sophomore?
Nick Crosby: No. Me neither. But we both got playing time. Me more than him.
Detective Nelson: How did he feel about that?
Nick Crosby: I don’t know. We never really talked about it. It was the kind of thing that would bug him, though. He worked hard, but unlike Jason, our other point guard, he isn’t – wasn’t – as fast. It wasn’t because he was sick or anything like that. It just was the way it was.
Detective Nelson: If you didn’t talk about it, why do you say it bugged him?
Nick Crosby: I don’t know, I guess that’s just my assumption. But he was like that – about money, or girls. A chip on his shoulder kind of thing – always assuming people looked down on him, or rich people never deserved what they got, and then being totally assertive to make up for it. It was kind of ridiculous. No one would even know about his background if he didn’t advertise it being so defensive.
Detective Nelson: Why did he think people looked down on him?
Nick Crosby: The scholarship. His parents live here in town, they never went to college, that kind of thing. He could have gotten more money for expenses if he lived with them, but he wanted the dorm because all the other players with scholarships got it. He thought it was only fair. That’s what I mean about ridiculous. He cared too much about what people thought. Not ridiculous – that’s not the right word. He was insecure.
Detective Nelson: But you decided to room together again.
Nick Crosby: Well, we didn’t have much choice. I mean, they pretty much assign you. I guess we could have requested transfers, but – look, we were friends. Don’t get me wrong. We got along okay. More than that. Like I said, we were friends.
Detective Nelson: Now, what was this bracelet you mentioned?
Nick Crosby: His medical bracelet. On his left hand. Wasn’t it there?
Detective Nelson: Did you ever meet Kevin's parents?
Nick Crosby: Yeah. Once or twice. They came to all the home games. Real nice folks. They were proud of him. I always told him some things count more than money and that’s what I meant. They supported him all the way.
Detective Nelson: So when did you last see Kevin?
Nick Crosby: Thursday.
Detective Nelson: About what time?
Nick Crosby: I guess it was around 6:30. We had just finished practice and we were coming back from the room together. And I decided to go to the library because I have a term paper to deal with and I knew he was behind, too. So when he go out of the shower, I told him that he should come with me, but he said he had to work and he left right away.
Detective Nelson: Which library was this?
Nick Crosby: Williams. On campus.
Detective Nelson: Where did he work?
Nick Crosby: The Joint – The Juke Joint. Up on 14th? It was kind of a dive. I've only been there a couple times.
Detective Nelson: What did Kevin do there?
Nick Crosby: I guess he was a waiter, or whatever you would call it for that kind of place. They have movies and food, sort of.
Detective Nelson: How often did he work there?
Nick Crosby: Just a couple of times a week, maybe ten, fifteen hours? He didn’t have a lot of time, obviously.
Detective Nelson: Did you know any of the people he worked with?
Nick Crosby: His friend, Rhonda. I guess she’d helped him out with money a couple times. We all did.
Detective Nelson: Meaning what?
Nick Crosby: He was always borrowing. It was kind of sad really, but he had IOUs for half the team. I mean, I never really gave him anything I really needed paid back right away, but some of the guys were pissed.
Detective Nelson: Anyone in particular stand out?
Nick Crosby: Not really. Why? Do you think – did something happen, I mean, how did he die?
Detective Nelson: Can you just answer the question?
Nick Crosby: No. He got along with everybody pretty okay, but they gave him shit about the money and everything, but none of them would starve if he didn’t pay them back. I guess Jason didn’t seem to like him, but I don’t even know why I’m saying that. I didn't see anything.
Detective Nelson: Jason who?
Nick Crosby: Jason Finnegan. Shit. Forget I said that. I mean, Kevin never said anything about him to me.
Detective Nelson: And did Jason say anything about Kevin?
Nick Crosby: Not that I know of. I mean, no one ever really talked shit about him to me. We were roommates, right?
Detective Nelson: Okay. So what happened after you went to the library?
Nick Crosby: Nothing, the library’s open 24 hours so I stayed until about 3:00, came home, did some stretching in the TV room, that’s it.
Detective Nelson: Did you notice whether Kevin came back?
Nick Crosby: No. I’m a pretty light sleeper, and he has to check his blood sugar before bed, so he needs the light. He never came back.
Detective Nelson: So it didn’t concern you that Kevin was out all Thursday night?
Nick Crosby: No. Not really. I figured he went over to his girlfriend's after work or something.
Detective Nelson: What’s her name?
Nick Crosby: Carly Brock. I met her a couple of times.
Detective Nelson: Where does she live?
Nick Crosby: I don’t know. She’s a student, a sophomore, but I think she has an apartment off-campus.
Detective Nelson: Did she and Kevin get along okay?
Nick Crosby: I guess. I mean, I never really hung out with them when they were together or anything, but he seemed to keep her on a tight leash.
Detective Nelson: What does that mean?
Nick Crosby: Just that, I don’t know. I mean, he was always ordering her around. Be here, pick me up there. She has a car. And I don’t really know why she put up with it. Well, I’m speculating. She probably did give him shit about it. Shit. Does she know?
Detective Nelson: Were you and she dating? Or maybe you wanted to?
Nick Crosby: No. Don’t be ridiculous. No. I have a girlfriend. Beatrice Rivera. You can check with her.
Detective Nelson: So you didn’t see him all Thursday night. What about Friday?
Nick Crosby: Well, he has a crazy full course load, so I don’t usually see him until practice. He’s, like, the only guy I know who has classes on Fridays. But like I said, he’s a hard worker. And he’s so strung out with his job – I guess the schedule had to be that way.
Detective Nelson: And what time was practice?
Nick Crosby: Normally, Fridays we’re off because we had a game the next day, Tulsa – a day game. We had practice early so we could go home and rest up. It was three to five.
Detective Nelson: And Kevin wasn’t there?
Nick Crosby: No. That’s why I thought illness or his parents came to get him or something like that. The coaches were pissed – they’d planned for him to start.
Detective Nelson: Has he ever skipped practice like that before?
Nick Crosby: Never. That’s why I thought illness – it seemed the only logical explanation.
Detective Nelson: Well, did you talk with anyone about it?
Nick Crosby: The coaches, yeah. They were maybe going to make some calls. Well, everyone, really. We were all wondering where he was, and since I’m the roommate – everyone wanted to know what was up. After practice we all went to see a movie – we’re not allowed to party the night before a game, so it’s kind of a tradition – and it’s all we talked about. Wall Street, I don’t even remember how it ended. I was kind of freaked out – I mean, if he was sick, he’d let the coaches know somehow, or he would have gotten his parents to let them know. He’s responsible like that.
Detective Nelson: If you were so worried, why didn’t you report him missing?
Nick Crosby: I didn’t feel like it was my place. I mean, don’t get me wrong. He’s my friend. I live with him. But I thought the coaches should make that call. Or his parents – I tried them a couple times that night – Saturday too. But I couldn’t reach them. They don’t have a machine.
Detective Nelson: Did you talk with anyone else about him?
Nick Crosby: Yeah. When I got back from the movie, there were messages on our machine. The Joint called, some guy calling looking for Kevin – I guess he’d been scheduled to work that night, which was crazy to do the night before a game, and hadn’t showed up. I called back and asked if he’d been at work the night before like he said, and they said he hadn’t actually been on the schedule but who knows, it’s finals week so everyone’s always swapping shifts. The guy I talked to hadn’t seen him for a few days.
Detective Nelson: Anyone else?
Nick Crosby: Yeah, Carly. She called asking for him, and when I said he wasn't there, she acted like it was my fault. Like why didn’t I know where he was, and did something happen with the team, and why did everyone give him such a hard time over owing them a few bucks. I didn’t understand half of it. I said some harsh things back – just out of shock, I think. I assumed she’d know where he was and I think it was the same for her, she thought I’d know. She ended up hanging up on me. I didn’t want to deal with her calling back, so I took the phone off the hook.
Detective Nelson: So your line was busy the rest of the night? What time was this?
Nick Crosby: I guess we talked at ten or something. After the movie. Yeah. I know, Kevin might have tried to call, but at that point I was a little pissed off. I figured if Carly didn’t know where he was, maybe he didn’t want to be found. Maybe he’d gotten resentful and run away or something, or moved back home, trying to make us feel sorry for him. Just crazy ideas, but I didn’t know what else to think.
Detective Nelson: Why would Carly think Kevin being missing was your fault?
Nick Crosby: I have no idea.
Detective Nelson: Did he owe you more money than anyone else?
Nick Crosby: He hadn’t borrowed much from me at all. No.
Detective Nelson: So after you took the phone off the hook, what then?
Nick Crosby: Nothing. I was a little freaked out, but I had to get some sleep because of the game. I did some visualization exercises and calmed down a little and got to bed. I guess maybe it was midnight.
Detective Nelson: And Kevin didn’t come back?
Nick Crosby: No.
Detective Nelson: So then it’s Saturday – what happened before the game?
Nick Crosby: I have a pretty strict routine, a little jog just to get warm, some stretching, breakfast, etcetera. I tried Kevin’s parents again and then when the phone was back on the hook, a couple guys called asking if he’d turned up, saying he was going to be in trouble with the coaches for sure. To be honest, at that point I was getting into the game, I really need to focus so I had to just block out that whole part of my brain that was spinning around and freaking out. When I went to the gym to get ready, Kevin wasn’t there, and the coaches didn’t say anything about it – when I asked, they just said they were taking care of it and we needed to just forget Kevin for the duration of the game. His parents weren’t there, which made me think I’d been right and maybe he was sick. It’s not like they showed up expecting to see him there, I thought they had to know. When it was over, I guess it wasn’t until later that night, I tried calling them again, but I didn’t get an answer.
Detective Nelson: Before the game, where did you run?
Nick Crosby: It’s not a run. Literally I go around the block, like to the Circle and back.
Detective Nelson: Did Kevin go for a run as part of his workout routine?
Nick Crosby: No. I mean, we ran drills on the court during practice. Other than that I don’t know. Why is this important?
Detective Nelson: Is there any reason for Kevin to be out on Hathorn?
Nick Crosby: Out by Gillom gym? No. Why?
Detective Nelson: We’re just trying to figure out what Kevin did after you saw him last.
Nick Crosby: Are you thinking something happened to him? I'm sorry. I mean, obviously something happened to him. But are you saying someone killed him?
Detective Nelson: Why would you think that?
Nick Crosby: Is it true?
Detective Nelson: Just tell me why you ask.
Nick Crosby: Wow. I can’t believe this. He was killed?
Detective Nelson: Answer the question.
Nick Crosby: I don’t know. I really don’t. Okay. I can explain why. He was very careful about his diabetes thing, so he wouldn’t let him get himself into a health emergency, so there’s no other explanation. I mean, he didn’t have a car so he couldn’t get in an accident.
Detective Nelson: Was there anyone who wanted to hurt Kevin?
Nick Crosby: No. I couldn't think of anyone doing that.
Detective Nelson: None of these guys on the team he owed money to?
Nick Crosby: No. I mean – no. It would never get to that. I mean, no one had even really gotten mad about it, so it wouldn’t make sense. Everyone was just teasing him, that’s all. He didn’t like it, but he wasn’t about to get into a fight or anything. That's why Carly, what she was saying made no sense. It just wasn't that serious.
Detective Nelson: Not even Jason Finnegan?
Nick Crosby: Forget I said that. I don’t know why I said it.
Detective Nelson: What about Kevin’s other friends? Is there anyone we should talk to?
Nick Crosby: He didn’t seem to have time for socializing. I don’t really know. He pretty much went to practice, worked and went to class – and that’s it, pretty much in that order of priority.
Detective Nelson: There's no one else we should talk to?
Nick Crosby: No. Well, okay, there's this guy, Richie. I don’t know his last name, but he knew Kevin growing up so. I only met him once. He came to a game and sat with Kevin’s parents. He’s a student, too, but I don’t know where he lives or anything. Kevin was always saying he was going over there to study, probably just to hang out or something. I guess he has an okay place. Better than Kinard.
Detective Nelson: You don’t seem to think Kevin studied too much.
Nick Crosby: What makes you say that?
Detective Nelson: Well, just now you didn’t seem to think he went to Richie’s to study. And you said class was the last priority.
Nick Crosby: Oh. Yes. That’s true.
Detective Nelson: Was Kevin having trouble at school?
Nick Crosby: No. I mean, we have to have a 3.0 grade average to keep the scholarship, and he’s still here, right? Or was. Shit.
Detective Nelson: That doesn’t exactly sound like a ringing endorsement.
Nick Crosby: No. I guess not. To be honest, he seemed to be struggling. I think he wanted to study medicine or something, but I don’t know. When he had time, he could work really hard, but – it didn’t seem to come easy. His writing was terrible. And he didn’t have a lot of time. With the job at The Joint. He was distracted.
Detective Nelson: Did he ever ask you for help with assignments?
Nick Crosby: Why do you ask that?
Detective Nelson: You were his roommate. Did you have any classes together?
Nick Crosby: No. I mean, everyone has to take the required general ed, but we were never in the same section. There were a couple of classes where we shared the books.
Detective Nelson: How do you know his writing was bad?
Nick Crosby: Okay. I looked at his composition essays. You know, "Fundamentals of Writing"? It’s required. He asked me to correct his grammar, that’s all. I tried to teach him. Basic stuff, comma splices, how to structure an essay, nothing complicated, just your five-paragraph format. It’s versus its. Everyone should know this. I was kind of shocked. We spent like two hours going over everything, and it was a two-page essay. I corrected so much, it was almost like I rewrote it. I told him he had to learn it himself. That’s what I mean about hard work – he studied the grammar book for hours. But the next essay didn’t seem much better. I didn’t want to get involved any more.
Detective Nelson: Did you tell him?
Nick Crosby: Yeah.
Detective Nelson: How did he take that?
Nick Crosby: Well, he didn’t like it. Got in my face a little – I mean that figuratively, not literally. He wasn’t a violent person. But he had a chip on his shoulder. Went on and on about how I was just a Richie Rich kid playing at being poor, and it wasn’t fair. I told him if he wanted to be fair, he had to pull his own weight and pass the class without me. I ended up walking out. We didn’t talk about it again.
Detective Nelson: When was this?
Nick Crosby: Last year. Around this time. It’s a one-semester class, and he wanted help with the final essay.
Detective Nelson: Did he pass the class?
Nick Crosby: Yes.
Detective Nelson: I thought you said you didn’t talk about it.
Nick Crosby: No. I just meant we didn’t talk about the fight. He told me he passed the class.
Detective Nelson: Did someone else help him get through it?
Nick Crosby: I don’t know.
Detective Nelson: What about in other classes?
Nick Crosby: I don’t know. I don’t think so. Look, it was nothing. We’re roommates, and I looked at his essay. That’s all. Okay? I don’t want to talk about it.
Detective Nelson: Sure, Nick. We can talk about it again some other time. Is there anything else you can think of? Anyone else we should talk to?
Nick Crosby: No. I coudn’t think of anyone doing that to him. I mean, Kevin was kind of a prick, but he was harmless.
Detective Nelson: Did you ever hurt him?
Nick Crosby: No.
Detective Nelson: Did you want to kill him?
Nick Crosby: Absolutely not. We were friends. I mean, he must've he thought I was kind of a prick too, but we got along fine.
Detective Nelson: Okay. Thanks for talking to me. I’ll get you back to the dorm.
Nick Crosby: Thanks. Yeah - finals. Wow. I don’t know how I’m going to study. This is all so unreal.
Detective Nelson: Are you leaving town for break?
Nick Crosby: No. This is home. I’ll be here. If you want me to come in again, just call.
Detective Nelson: Okay. Thanks.
Interview ended 3:48 p.m.