Paul Evans interview
Paul Evans was Kimberly Pace's estranged boyfriend.
Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed him at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
Monday, October 17, 2022 – 1:30 p.m.
- Detective T. Armstrong
- Detective S. Murphy
- Paul Evans
Detective Murphy: For the record, could you please state your name and address?
Paul Evans: My name is Paul Evans, and well, I used to live at 1592 Jackson in Oxford. But right now, I live at 620 Main Street in Abbeville.
Detective Murphy: Will the Abbeville address be your permanent residence for a while?
Paul Evans: Yes, probably. I don't know what's going to happen with Kimberly's house now that… well…. Anyway, it wasn't ever my house, so, that can't be my address anymore, right?
Detective Murphy: Okay, we'll note that for the record.
Detective Armstrong: Mr. Evans, can you tell us what your relationship was with Kimberly Pace?
Paul Evans: Well, she was my lover and girlfriend.
Detective Murphy: How would you characterize your relationship with her?
Paul Evans: I'd say it was passionate. We had rocky times, of course, and you figured that out since I live at Miguel's. But for the most part, it was good. When she came down to that opening that night, I knew that we'd get back together. I think, so did she.
Detective Murphy: Was that the last time you spoke with her?
Paul Evans: Yeah. Her and Becky came to the show, and I said, "hi," just to see if she had anything to say. And she came over and hugged me and said that we should talk for a little bit afterwards and that I should call her in a couple of days.
Detective Murphy: Can you tell us why you moved out of Dr. Pace's home in the first place?
Paul Evans: Well, like I said, we were – kind of a passionate relationship. She— when you're jealous, it makes you do stupid things, you know, and when— we had broken up before several times, and then we always got back together. And so I just figured this time we would too.
Detective Murphy: We understand in this particular case, you heard some rumors about Kimberly. What were those rumors?
Paul Evans: Nothing really, just some stupid kids talking about Kimberly having an affair with one of her students. I knew it wasn't true.
Detective Murphy: Then why'd you move out?
Paul Evans: Well, because it was the same problem we always had. She gets too involved with these kids she teaches, and then the rumors start, and she gets all upset about it, but she won't listen to me. She never could understand that she had to have some distance between herself and those kids, or it was always going to be trouble to her.
Detective Murphy: And your breakup had nothing to do with any jealousies you might have felt about her students?
Paul Evans: All right, maybe I was jealous. So sometimes I felt out of my league around those pointy-headed snobs, and she was different when she was around them too. Sometimes they were hanging around the house… Anyway, yeah, I guess I was jealous too.
Detective Armstrong: When you were living with Kimberly, did you get to know any of the neighbors?
Paul Evans: Well, there was Jeremy. He lives across the way. He and Kim were pretty chummy. Other than that, I'd just wave "hi" to some of the neighbors as I was leaving in the morning. That was about it.
Detective Armstrong: What about Arthur Beck next door?
Paul Evans: Well, him. I didn't really talk to him just so much as listen to him complain and stuff to me.
Detective Armstrong: What did he complain about?
Paul Evans: Basically, like, for example, when his wife was alive, he would complain about me using my chainsaw, and we worked that one out.
Detective Armstrong: Was that all he complained about? The chainsaw?
Paul Evans: No. He— mostly, it was just him complaining about Kimberly and the things that I should tell her, and I really didn't pay much attention to what he said most of the time.
Detective Armstrong: So, him and Kimberly didn't get along?
Paul Evans: Well, the man's wife died like a year ago, and after that, he just kind of turned into a Scrooge, very cold, distant type of person. And then every little thing that Kimberly did seemed to upset him.
Detective Armstrong: We understand one of the points of contention was about Kimberly's dog, Thoreau. Is that right?
Paul Evans: Yeah, good ol' Thoreau. That dog sure does love to dig and chew, I swear. He knew just how to get after Arthur. Like on more than one occasion, he would go into dog's— into the neighbor's yard and tear up the rose bushes and made Arthur terribly mad.
Detective Armstrong: What did Kimberly do about Arthur's complaints?
Paul Evans: Well, at this point, she was pretty much done dealing with him, right? He— she got along well with Arthur's wife when she was alive, but afterwards, it pretty much just went to hell. And when Kimberly's first dog died, she became just as irrational as he was about stuff.
Detective Murphy: Kimberly had another dog that died?
Paul Evans: Yeah, a golden Lab named Emerson. He died one time when we were away on vacation. We had one of the neighbor girls watching him, feeding him and stuff, but when we got back, the dog was dead. Kimberly was certain that Arthur had done it, but you know how pet owners can be. Real irrational about stuff when stuff happens to their animals, paranoid.
Detective Murphy: When was this incident with Emerson?
Paul Evans: Last year about this time. We went to my family reunion in Michigan that weekend. She was all upset because Jeremy couldn't watch Emerson because he had something to do. Anyway, like I said, a girl came in and fed and walked Emerson.
Detective Armstrong: What did Kimberly do about her suspicions?
Paul Evans: She blamed Arthur, of course. He denied it. She talked to the police. They weren't able to find anything. And then she finally had a vet do an autopsy, but by then, it had been far too late, and they didn't find anything either. They figure he got into some garbage or something that didn't agree with him and made him vomit continuously. I guess that a body can only take so much of that before things give out, and that's what happened.
Detective Murphy: So you didn't believe that Mr. Beck had anything to do with Emerson's death?
Paul Evans: I don't know. I guess I didn't have an opinion, really. Kimberly gets so attached to her pets like they're people or something, and I'm just not that way. An animal is an animal, you know? Sometimes they just up and die, and you never know why. It's just part of life. She just really loved that dog and needed something to make it make sense to her. I guess that's how I looked at it.
Detective Armstrong: Did you ever get involved in any of the arguments between Arthur and Kimberly?
Paul Evans: A couple times, I got between them and broke it up, had to drag her away and into the house. Get her to calm down.
Detective Murphy: Were you concerned the arguments were going to get physical? Is that why you had to step in?
Paul Evans: No, nothing like that. They were just really hollering at each other, just arguing for arguing's sake, not trying to resolve anything. And I didn't like seeing Kimberly get all worked up like that.
Detective Armstrong: Okay. When you lived at Kimberly's house, did you notice anything unusual in the neighborhood?
Paul Evans: Like what? It's a pretty quiet neighborhood. If anything weird came along, the dog always barked at it.
Detective Armstrong: Did you ever notice anyone hanging around that shouldn't have been there?
Paul Evans: You mean like that kid who had a thing for her? Yeah, I had to scare him off a few times.
Detective Armstrong: Do you remember the kid's name?
Paul Evans: No, I don't think I ever knew it. I can tell you, though, I think it was one of her students that thought he was in love with her. You know, she had that effect on people sometimes. She— well, the kid seemed harmless enough, and she didn't take no mind to him, so neither did I.
Detective Murphy: Do you know anything about possible accusations that Dr. Pace sold grades to students?
Paul Evans: Kimberly would never do such a thing. Never!
Detective Murphy: But you're aware of the recent controversy on campus about that?
Paul Evans: I heard something about it, but I figured it was just bullsh— uh, just bull.
Detective Murphy: Dr. Pace never talked to you about it?
Paul Evans: No. That happened not long after I went to Miguel's. We weren't having a lot of heart-to-hearts right then, you know?
Detective Murphy: Did you know any of Dr. Pace's co-workers?
Paul Evans: They're all pretty stuffy types, I think. I never went to college… anyway, no.
Detective Murphy: So you never met any of her colleagues?
Paul Evans: Not really. Kind of, like this one guy, Laurence, he— I met him at this party that Kimberly had for the English Department. Very, very rude fellow, just talked down his nose at me the entire time, and then midway through our conversation, turned around and walked into the kitchen where Kimberly was.
Detective Armstrong: Did you hear any of that conversation? Was he rude to Kimberly too?
Paul Evans: Well, normally, I don't eavesdrop, but I did hear this one. And I will tell you that he was really going off on her, talking down to her like she was some sort of little girl, going on and on about how she treated her students.
Detective Armstrong: What was Kimberly's reaction to that?
Paul Evans: She didn't like it. Anyway, it got to be too much for me, so I went down to my shop and worked on one of my bowls, so I didn't really hear a thing after that.
Detective Armstrong: Do you remember when this was?
Paul Evans: Not long before I moved out.
Detective Murphy: When did you move out exactly?
Paul Evans: October 4th.
Detective Armstrong: Have you been back to Kimberly's house since you moved out?
Paul Evans: Sure. My shop is still in her basement, and with my opening coming up, I was there a few times finishing up some things and getting the stuff to take over to the gallery.
Detective Armstrong: And did Kimberly mind you being there?
Paul Evans: No, she knew what I was doing. She wasn't even always there when I was anyways.
Detective Murphy: How did you get in the house then?
Paul Evans: I still have my key.
Detective Murphy: You didn't give it back to her when you moved out?
Paul Evans: Nope. Didn't even occur to me. Or her either. It just wasn't that kind of thing.
Detective Murphy: What wasn't that kind of thing?
Paul Evans: It's not like we broke it off completely or anything. We were just taking a break.
Detective Murphy: I see.
Paul Evans: What's that supposed to mean?
Detective Armstrong: How would you characterize Kimberly's relationship with her sister, Becky?
Paul Evans: Well, I would say that, in a way, they adored each other. You know, Becky was a really, really nice girl, very pleasant to be around, always smiling. And those two would have done just about anything for each other.
Detective Armstrong: What about Cheryl Weston and Kimberly?
Paul Evans: Well, Cheryl, call her the wise one. Her and Kimberly go back a long ways. In a way, I think that Cheryl was more of a mama to her than her own mother. I mean, not that Kimberly's mom is bad or anything. She just hasn't been much for motherly advice in the past couple years. Cheryl, though, she's a smart lady, been around, knows a lot. Kimberly relied on her for advice and things like that.
Detective Armstrong: What about Jeremy Gladwell?
Paul Evans: Oh, he was just another girlfriend of Kimberly's.
Detective Armstrong: Can you elaborate on that?
Paul Evans: Well, those two would be chatting on the phone all the time like a couple of little school girls, going back and forth, going out shopping, stuff like that.
Detective Armstrong: You don't care for Mr. Gladwell?
Paul Evans: I wasn't crazy about him hanging around all the time. Kimberly believed that was a flaw in my character … but you can't change how you feel sometimes. So she went over to his place a lot instead of him coming to the house. Anyway, they were crazy about each other.
Detective Armstrong: Where were you on Saturday evening and early Sunday morning?
Paul Evans: Well, like I said, I had the opening that night and left at about 11:00 p.m. Went back to Miguel's place and passed out.
Detective Armstrong: Can anyone back that up?
Paul Evans: Well, Lila Lawson, the gallery owner, was there when I left, so yeah, she could vouch for me. But when I got to Miguel's, nobody was there. I think he was out drinking with some friends. I was asleep when he got in. I don't know.
Detective Murphy: So you didn't go by Kimberly's house at all? At all? Not at all?
Paul Evans: All right, well, I did go by the house. I sat outside on my bike and thought about going up, knocking on that door, but I never did. You know, I figured it was late and there was really no point in talking, so I just left.
Detective Murphy: What time was that when you went by her house?
Paul Evans: Maybe like five, ten minutes after the show.
Detective Murphy: What did you see at the house? Were any lights on? Were any cars there?
Paul Evans: Let's see. I know Kimberly's Honda was there in the driveway. Lights on in the house? I think the kitchen light might have been on. I was just looking from the street, so I can't say for sure, but it looked like the kitchen light. Seems like the light out back of the house might have been on too, but it could have been the kitchen light shining out the window into the backyard. I don't remember. Sorry. Is it important?
Detective Murphy: Did you see Dr. Pace in the house then? Was she walking around or anything like that?
Paul Evans: I don't think so, but I really don't remember.
Detective Murphy: Did you see anybody in the neighborhood? See anyone walking their dog or jogging or sitting on the porch? Anything like that?
Paul Evans: No.
Detective Armstrong: Let's back up for a second. You say you rode a bicycle between here and Abbeville?
Paul Evans: No, a motorcycle.
Detective Murphy: A witness told us you have a car that breaks down a lot. Do you have car in addition to the motorcycle?
Paul Evans: Who told you that? Never mind, I can guess. I used to have a car — like a year and a half, two years ago — that broke down a lot, but I got rid of it because it was so unreliable. I've had the bike for a couple years now.
Detective Murphy: Can you think of anyone who wanted Dr. Pace dead?
Paul Evans: You know, I've been going over and over that in my mind, again and again, and I just can't come up with anything, but I really hope that you guys figure it out before I do because I don't know what I would do if I found out.
Detective Armstrong: You'd best leave that to us, Paul. Don't go off half-cocked now doing something you'll be sorry for.
Paul Evans: I know. I won't do anything.
Detective Murphy: If you know anything about who might have killed Dr. Pace, you need to tell us.
Paul Evans: I will tell you anything that I know. I promise.
Detective Murphy: Mr. Evans, make sure we understand each other. Make sure that you do tell us, and then make sure that you don't do anything yourself. Do we understand each other?
Paul Evans: Yes, ma'am.
Detective Armstrong: All right. Thanks for coming in. We'll give you a call if we need anything else.
Interview ended – 1:53 p.m.