Christy Arnold interview #3
Friday, January 29, 2021 – 8:03 a.m.
Christy Arnold previously terminated an interview, saying she wanted an attorney present.
Detectives Magee and Murphy spoke to her again at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
- Detective J. Magee
- Detective S. Murphy
- Christy Arnold
Detective Murphy: This is a surprise.
Christy Arnold: I need to talk. I want it to be official.
Detective Magee: Is your attorney joining us?
Christy Arnold: No. I don't care.
Detective Murphy: Okay, calm down. State your name and address again for the record.
Christy Arnold: Christine Faye Arnold. 701 South 19th Street. I have to confess.
Detective Murphy: Go on.
Christy Arnold: I've been lying all along. I had to tell you that. I mean, not the way you think—not about what happened to Spenser. My lawyer said not to, but I had to come in. You have to see I would never hurt him.
Detective Murphy: Why do you say that?
Christy Arnold: I loved him. He and I, we were together. You know.
Detective Murphy: You were having an affair?
Christy Arnold: Yeah.
Detective Murphy: For how long?
Christy Arnold: Five months. No, six.
Detective Murphy: Why are you telling us this now?
Christy Arnold: The first time you asked me, you know, about the phone call, I thought, no big deal. Spense was so careful—we both were—so I was sure no one would be able to prove anything. The people might say something, but it would just be speculation, right? But when you called me back in again, I panicked.
Detective Murphy: Why?
Christy Arnold: I didn't know what all you knew. Maybe there was something we missed. I was so scared because I knew it would look bad, and I started lying. I mean, I talked with a lawyer and he said I didn't have to talk with you ever again.
Detective Murphy: That's true. If you want to have your lawyer here, you can do that.
Christy Arnold: No, don't you see? I had to come talk to you. I couldn't let you think— if you wasted time thinking it was me, then maybe whoever did it was going to get away with it. I had to tell you.
Detective Magee: Very noble of you.
Detective Murphy: So when you said you and Mr. Brooks went out to lunch—
Christy Arnold: No. That was all true. Everything about the office.
Detective Murphy: So then when did you see each other?
Christy Arnold: After work sometimes. He would tell Virginia he was pulling an all-nighter on a case. We would go out there. To the cabin.
Detective Murphy: At Wall Doxey Park.
Christy Arnold: Yeah. The ranger, what's his name? Roy, I think. He let Spense use it whenever he wanted. Cabin 7 was the one Spense preferred.
Detective Murphy: How often did you go out there?
Christy Arnold: Oh, maybe once a month, every few weeks. It couldn't be too often.
Detective Murphy: That's it?
Christy Arnold: Yeah.
Detective Magee: You ever go to a motel somewhere?
Christy Arnold: No. Although last fall, the D.A.'s convention down in Biloxi, I went with him. I mean, not "with him" with him, but I met him down there. Separate cars, everything.
Detective Magee: This was overnight?
Christy Arnold: Yeah, three days. But it was just so—oh, I don't know—stupid. I had to sneak up to his room, and then stay there, no room service, no nothing.
Detective Magee: What did you do when you got hungry?
Christy Arnold: I had to put on this stupid wig and sunglasses and go to some other casino and use the restaurant there. Or buy snacks at the 7-11 and bring them back. And I could only pay cash.
Detective Magee: Is that it?
Christy Arnold: No. I couldn't use the Internet or my cell phone either. He was worried about being tracked.
Detective Magee: That doesn't sound like very much fun.
Christy Arnold: It wasn't. We hardly saw each other at all, and we had a fight. I can't believe I wasted time like that.
Detective Murphy: What did you fight about?
Christy Arnold: I was just frustrated, you know? I wanted it to be over. All the sneaking around.
Detective Magee: Hold on. You thought he was going to leave his wife?
Christy Arnold: No. I knew, for sure.
Detective Murphy: Christy, you slept with him, what, ten times in six months?
Christy Arnold: No. I mean, yeah, we couldn't risk more than that. But I wasn't lying before. About the office, you know. All the stuff about his cases and the advice he gave me about my career. That was real. We really were friends.
Detective Magee: Or friends with benefits.
Christy Arnold: No, oh no. It wasn't cheap like that.
Detective Murphy: Did he ever tell you he wanted to leave his wife?
Christy Arnold: He said he loved me. Sometimes, like when he had a bad day, we'd talk about running away. But he felt responsible. I loved him for that, you know? Even though it sucked.
Detective Murphy: Responsible for what?
Christy Arnold: His family. We talked a lot about them because he loved them, too. Especially Wes. I got to meet him, once. Spense worried about him. He would ask my advice. Tease me – he would say, Wes and I were closer in age, so I could be his girlfriend. Like I cared about any of that.
Detective Murphy: What did he say about Virginia?
Christy Arnold: Not much. Or, I guess, one time he complained she was cold to him. This was at the cabin. But then the next day, he called me and said he felt bad about that. Dishonorable. He didn't think it was right to talk about her to me. That was it.
Detective Murphy: Did you ever meet her?
Christy Arnold: No.
Detective Magee: Did he ever talk about his brother?
Christy Arnold: Byron? Yeah, sometimes. More like memories growing up. Spense was worried about his mother, mostly. Didn't know what to do. He felt ashamed like he couldn't face her.
Detective Magee: Because of you?
Christy Arnold: Oh, no. I mean, I don't think so. He never said that. More just he didn't do enough for her and his father. Before, you know, it was too late.
Detective Magee: Did he say anything about meeting Byron when you talked to him on the day he died?
Christy Arnold: No.
Detective Magee: What was that call about?
Christy Arnold: What I said. He was excited about the note. Alderman Collins.
Detective Murphy: It's some coincidence that the person who left the note picked Cabin 7. Did you ever tell anyone else that's where you and Mr. Brooks shacked up?
Christy Arnold: No. It wasn't shacking up. I told you.
Detective Murphy: Did you ever tell your roommate about him?
Christy Arnold: No. No, no. Never.
Detective Murphy: How would you explain staying overnight at the cabin?
Christy Arnold: I told her I went to my parents' in Tupelo. She doesn't know them, and we don't have a landline, so it's not like they would call looking for me and get her instead.
Detective Murphy: She never wondered why you weren't seeing anyone?
Christy Arnold: I don't think so. I let her set me up on a couple dates. Nothing serious. Mostly I pretended my standards were too high, which they were. No one can live up to Spense. I can't believe he's gone.
Detective Magee: Do you need a minute?
Christy Arnold: No. Keep going.
Detective Magee: Did you ever go to Wall Doxey with Mr. Brooks to play poker?
Christy Arnold: No.
Detective Magee: What about his brother?
Christy Arnold: No. I never met him.
Detective Murphy: In all this talking you did about work, what did Spenser have to say about Jill Ross?
Christy Arnold: Nothing serious, like I said before. Now that she has his job, she's on top of the world. I can't stand the way she acts like she owns the place.
Detective Murphy: How did Spenser feel about it?
Christy Arnold: Well, he didn't like it, but he didn't hit back, you know? He just took it in stride. Never put her down. I mean, they disagreed all the time, but he was always professional about it. I admired that about him. Whenever anyone would tease me about Spense, I tried to act like he did with Jill and just let it go.
Detective Magee: Did he ever mention Kyle Ferguson?
Christy Arnold: No.
Detective Magee: Did he ever talk about anyone he'd convicted threatening him?
Christy Arnold: No, although I guess maybe that's the kind of thing he wouldn't tell me. He would want to protect me.
Detective Magee: He didn't mention any threats when you talked to him that morning?
Christy Arnold: No. I would have told you.
Detective Murphy: Okay, then let's talk about that Saturday morning again. Where were you when he called?
Christy Arnold: I was telling the truth. You have to understand that now. I would never hurt him.
Detective Murphy: We hear you, but for the record, once again, please just tell us where you were.
Christy Arnold: At home. I was hungover, and I was asleep in bed. After he called, I went back to sleep. When Keisha got home, I woke up.
Detective Murphy: So she was gone that morning.
Christy Arnold: Yeah. I think so. She usually goes to brunch.
Detective Murphy: You heard her come in?
Christy Arnold: I don't remember. I was asleep, tired, hungover in a major way, you know?
Detective Murphy: Why do you say she got home if you're not sure she was gone?
Christy Arnold: I don't know. No. Oh, I guess I don't know for sure. She could have been there all along. It was because I woke up and heard her all of a sudden. I don't remember. Maybe she turned on the TV? But I was there the whole time. I couldn't even find my keys for, like, half the day. Couldn't remember where I dropped them after the party.
Detective Magee: You're sure you didn't see Mr. Brooks that morning?
Christy Arnold: No. I mean, yes, I'm sure. No, I didn't see him.
Detective Magee: You could have been with him at the park and called yourself with his phone. To make it seem like you were at home.
Christy Arnold: No. I couldn't. You can talk to my friends—Karen, she's the one getting married. Have you talked to her? I was with her until 3:00 in the morning. I wasn't at Wall Doxey. I didn't use his phone. Why would I?
Detective Magee: Did you shoot Mr. Brooks at Wall Doxey Park?
Christy Arnold: No. Never. Why can't you believe me? That's why I came right down here first thing to tell you everything. Isn't that enough? Why would I lie?
Detective Magee: I don't know. Maybe because you think confessing to adultery will make us think you're innocent of murder.
Christy Arnold: No. You're wrong.
Detective Murphy: Christy, what else have you been hiding from us?
Christy Arnold: Nothing. That's it. Just, I had to tell you I loved him. I thought you would understand.
Detective Murphy: Who do you think did this?
Christy Arnold: I don't know. The thought of someone hurting Spense makes me sick. I can't think about it. Please, can I go now? I told you everything, and I have to get to work.
Detective Murphy: You can go for now. You might want to take a minute to pull yourself together before you go to work. Officer Richards can show you to the ladies' room on your way out.
Christy Arnold: Oh, okay.
Detective Magee: We might need you to pay us another visit. We'll let you know.
Christy Arnold: All right. Thank you.
Interview ended – 8:41 a.m.