Private investigator and former YCSD detective David Anderson was a friend of Monica Drum's and volunteered to help track down the former Eagle employees who have moved out of Oxford. After talking with one of those former employees, David Ledford, PI Anderson spoke to Ledford's wife, Doreen.
PI Anderson emailed Det. Armstrong to let him know what he found out.
From: David Anderson [OxfordPI@[redacted].com]
Date: July 20, 2019, 4:14 PM
Subject: David Ledford's wife
After I got back from Ledford's "campsite," I headed over to his address in New Sarpy to see if I couldn't get a word with his wife, Doreen. I didn't let her know I'd talked to him. You know the drill. I typed up our conversation below. I'll add my comments after.
PI Anderson: Hi. How you doing? Mrs. Ledford?
Doreen Ledford: Who are you?
PI Anderson: Are you Doreen Ledford?
Doreen Ledford: What if I am?
PI Anderson: Then, I want to talk to you.
Doreen Ledford: Why?
PI Anderson: Okay, I'm just gonna assume that you are Doreen Ledford. My name is David Anderson. I'm a private investigator from Oxford, Mississippi.
Doreen Ledford: A P. I.? Like Magnum?
PI Anderson: Uh, yeah. Just like Magnum.
Doreen Ledford: Well, what do you want with me?
PI Anderson: Actually, I wanted to talk about your husband, David.
Doreen Ledford: Well, he ain't here.
PI Anderson: Where is he?
Doreen Ledford: He said he was going fishing.
PI Anderson: When will he be back?
Doreen Ledford: He said he'd be back Thursday afternoon.
PI Anderson: Next Thursday?
Doreen Ledford: No, last Thursday.
PI Anderson: So, he was supposed to be back two days ago, but he hasn't showed up yet?
Doreen Ledford: Yep.
PI Anderson: Does he do that a lot?
Doreen Ledford: More than he should, which is never.
PI Anderson: Are you worried something might've happened to him?
Doreen Ledford: Hell, no. He's probably on another bender or passed out somewheres. If I know him, he's caught a helluva lot more beer than fish. And I'm sure he's got his best friend Jack with him too.
PI Anderson: Jack?
Doreen Ledford: Yeah. Daniels.
PI Anderson: Cute. Did anyone go with him?
Doreen Ledford: I doubt it. If anyone did, they're gone by now. Not many people can afford to just take off on the spur of the moment to go fishing for five or six days.
PI Anderson: David can afford it?
Doreen Ledford: No. He just does it anyway.
PI Anderson: Does he go fishing a lot?
Doreen Ledford: Almost every weekend. Fishing or hunting, depending on the season.
PI Anderson: Where does he usually go fishing?
Doreen Ledford: Lots of different places. Sometimes to the lake, sometimes down to the river, all over.
PI Anderson: Does he always go by himself?
Doreen Ledford: Not always. Sometimes he goes with some of his drinking buddies. They can tell you where the fishing spots are.
PI Anderson: Do you know who his drinking buddies are?
Doreen Ledford: Oh, Peter LaCroix, Morgan Prescott. Some guy Johnny B. The usual bunch he hangs out with down at Papa Doe's.
PI Anderson: Papa Doe's?
Doreen Ledford: It's a bar in town where all the do-nothings spend their time.
PI Anderson: So David was able to get time off from work to go fishing?
Doreen Ledford: He ain't working now. Can't seem to hold a job lately. He says it's on account of his back.
PI Anderson: He's got a problem with his back?
Doreen Ledford: He hurt it a few years ago. Back when we lived in Oxford. He says it still hurts him pretty bad, but sometimes I think he just uses it as an excuse to get loaded.
PI Anderson: How long has it been since you lived in Oxford?
Doreen Ledford: We've been here a couple months.
PI Anderson: Why did you leave Oxford?
Doreen Ledford: David never could find another job after the paper tossed him out on his ass. My great aunt passed on in November of last year and left me this house, so we decided to move down here to save on rent. The note on this house was paid off a long time ago, so there's no mortgage payment or anything.
PI Anderson: How did y'all get to Oxford in the first place?
Doreen Ledford: By the time David finished school, we were sick of Monroe, and we wanted to go somewheres else. I'd been working at the VA Clinic in Monroe, and I heard about the State Veterans Home in Oxford. I applied and got a job there, so we moved to Oxford. David got a job pretty quick after we moved there. He wasn't really drinking then.
PI Anderson: It sounds like he's drinking a lot now.
Doreen Ledford: Every day, seems like.
PI Anderson: Does it bother you?
Doreen Ledford: What do you think? Look, are we done here? You said you wanted to see David, and I already told you he ain't here and I don't know when he will be here. I gotta go to work.
PI Anderson: Where do you work?
Doreen Ledford: I work the night shift at the VA Med Center in New Orleans. And if I don't leave soon, I'm gonna be late.
PI Anderson: What do you do?
Doreen Ledford: I'm an LPN. Is that all?
PI Anderson: Not really. Mrs. Ledford, did you know Monica Drum in Oxford?
Doreen Ledford: Don't call me Mrs. Ledford. Makes me look around for my mother-in-law. Just call me Doreen. What was the question?
PI Anderson: Did you know Monica Drum?
Doreen Ledford: She was David's boss at the paper in Oxford.
PI Anderson: Did you ever meet her?
Doreen Ledford: Met her a few times at the Christmas party, 4th of July picnic, stuff like that.
PI Anderson: Did you like her?
Doreen Ledford: No.
PI Anderson: Would you care to elaborate on that?
Doreen Ledford: Not really.
PI Anderson: Well, someone murdered her, and the police are still looking for the killer. Maybe other people didn't like her for the same reason you didn't. You sure you won't tell me why?
Doreen Ledford: Huh. The old bitch finally got herself killed, huh?
PI Anderson: You didn't know about that?
Doreen Ledford: No. Why would I? We don't live in Oxford anymore.
PI Anderson: Well, people stay in touch. Social media, email, like that.
Doreen Ledford: What does this have to do with me?
PI Anderson: Maybe nothing. Why didn't you like her?
Doreen Ledford: She wasn't very nice to my husband.
PI Anderson: Did he like her?
Doreen Ledford: Oh, he thought she was the bee's knees at first. But eventually, he found out the truth.
PI Anderson: What was the truth?
Doreen Ledford: She was a hard-nosed bitch.
PI Anderson: Why do you say that?
Doreen Ledford: It was her fault they fired David.
PI Anderson: How was it her fault?
Doreen Ledford: She wanted him gone. I mean, sure, he was having some trouble with his back, and it made him late to work sometimes. But she couldn't really blame him for that.
PI Anderson: Why not?
Doreen Ledford: That was her fault too.
PI Anderson: How?
Doreen Ledford: It just was, okay? Look, I told you. I gotta go to work.
PI Anderson: Okay. Okay. Can I ask you just a couple more questions?
Doreen Ledford: Hurry up.
PI Anderson: Did you know David had been going to see Monica Drum late at night from the time he was fired until she was killed?
Doreen Ledford: You must be crazy. Why in the hell would he do that?
PI Anderson: I was hoping you might tell me.
Doreen Ledford: I don't believe you because that don't make no sense at all. But if he really did go see her, I have no idea why.
PI Anderson: Do you remember what you and David were doing last weekend?
Doreen Ledford: Oh, sure. I memorize every day of my life because they're all so fascinating.
PI Anderson: C'mon Doreen. Just think about it for a minute.
Doreen Ledford: Oh, all right. Let's see. Friday night, we had dinner with the family, and then David went fishing. I worked double shifts Saturday and Sunday since I'm the only one bringing any money into this house lately.
PI Anderson: Okay. I'm sorry I've kept you so long. I know you need to be getting to work. Is that your car out there? The Buick?
Doreen Ledford: Who else's would it be?
PI Anderson: I dunno. Could be David's.
Doreen Ledford: Oh, no. He won't drive anything but a pickup. He says cars are for women and wusses.
PI Anderson: Interesting perspective. What kind of truck does he have?
Doreen Ledford: One of those big Ford F350 dualies. Claims he needs a big bed to haul all the big game he bags. 'Course, you can tote a possum around in a little red wagon. Don't need a big red truck.
PI Anderson: When did he get that truck?
Doreen Ledford: Last week. Are you finished? If I don't leave right now, I'm gonna be late.
PI Anderson: Sure. Let me walk you out. So did David have another truck before the F350?
Doreen Ledford: Hell, yes. What do you think? He walked everywhere?
PI Anderson: No, of course not. What color was his last truck?
Doreen Ledford: Look, buddy, do you see what I'm doing here? I'm getting in my car. Next, I'm gonna drive away. David's old truck was blue. If you need to know more than that, I can't help you. I don't have time to think about it. Now you have a nice day. And if you see David, you tell him he'd better get his ass home.
PI Anderson: Yes, ma'am.
Ted, you can probably tell the woman was ticked off at her husband when I talked to her, and you know what that means. Maybe she was a little meaner than she might have been otherwise. But she defended him pretty good at some points too, so who knows which side she'll come down on if push comes to shove.
Soon as I send this to you, I'm going to head out on that errand we talked about. You know how to reach me.