Canvass – Square Pizza teens

On the afternoon of Tuesday, November 10, 2020, Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed teenagers who are regulars at Square Pizza on weekday afternoons. Most of the teens are members of a board game club they call Boardumb's Army.

In an interview with the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department dated Monday, November 9, 2020, Greg Reis said he was at Square Pizza on Tuesday, October 27, 2020, and overheard some teenagers plotting to kill Frederick Miller.

With the help of Square Pizza employees, the detectives were able to identify and subsequently interview the teens to determine whether Mr. Reis' claim had any merit.

The witness statements provided below are in summary and not verbatim and are representative of all interviews conducted.

Danning

Brooklynn Danning
Age: 17
Boardumb's Army club member

Brooklynn said that on October 27, she and a couple of others left a boring game of Midgard to talk about the next Tupelo Con. She said both she and Colton had costumes with crossbows, and they were sharing ideas on how to build prop versions.

Brooklynn said Colton had pinned a few ideas on Pinterest and started talking about the accuracy of a shot with the various designs. Brooklynn said she laughed out loud about his macho attitude surrounding a prop crossbow.

Brooklynn said her laughter pushed Colton's buttons, and he came back with some misogynistic comments and challenges about shooting a moving target. She ended the exchange by telling him that in that fantasy life he's living, he should challenge Merida, the Disney princess.

Brooklynn said she had tried archery, but it was boring, and she didn't like it. She said she never owned any actual equipment, and it was better to build your own props anyway because you could make them look a lot better than the real thing.

Gates

Asa Gates
Age: 16
Boardumb's Army club member

Asa said he had taken Frederick Miller's biology class, and it was no big deal. He said he didn't particularly like Mr. Miller as a teacher, but there were no issues between the two of them.

Asa said that on October 27, the club members who were going to Tupelo Con in March broke away from playing board games to have a conversation about their costumes.

Asa remembered because Colton and Brooklynn got into a loud, obnoxious discussion about which one of their fantasy characters was a better shot with a crossbow. Asa said Brooklynn got upset when Colton told her she might be able to shoot a moving target, but not without his help.

Hill

Gage Hill
Age: 17

Gage said he didn't personally have any trouble with Frederick Miller but thought Mr. Miller sometimes acted like a jerk to other students when they hadn't done their homework. Gage said, in his opinion, most times, Mr. Miller was justified because everyone knew he was a hard-ass and accepted zero excuses for being unprepared for his class.

Gage said he is not an official member of Boardumb's Army because he doesn't have the competitive edge of the club members. He said they take it way too seriously, and Gage just wants to have fun.

Gage said he was there on October 27 and remembered a heated discussion between Brooklynn and Colton about which of them was a better archer and who would need whose help to kill a moving target.

Gage said he found it hysterically funny since neither Brooklynn nor Colton had much athletic ability. He said they were both attractive enough and would look okay in their cosplay costumes, but to get upset about who was a better shot was asinine.

Gage added that he was a little embarrassed because the discussion got so loud. At first, only one long-haired guy was looking over like he wished they'd all just shut up, but then other people around them started to give sideways glances at the whole group of teenagers, so he went home.

Masters

Colton Masters
Age: 17
Boardumb's Army club member

Colton said he knew Frederick Miller as a teacher, but other than that, he had no contact with him. Colton described Mr. Miller's class as ridiculously easy and said he felt like he didn't learn anything in it that he didn't already know.

Colton explained that the purpose of the Boardumb's Army is to competitively play erudite board games. He said the club held a tournament-style game of Midgard for club members and others at Square Pizza on the afternoon of October 27. During the gameplay, a small group of club members, including Colton, broke off from the tournament to discuss their cosplay costumes for this spring's Tupelo Con.

Colton said he was talking to his friends that day about his ideas on how to engineer a realistic-looking prop crossbow that would make it past security. He and Brooklynn Danning got into a little verbal fencing match over which one of their cosplay characters was a better archer.

Colton said he remembered the date because he got a message on his phone that his costume boots had shipped, which meant that for sure, he'd be going to the con as Connor from Assassin's Creed.

Colton said he didn't own a real crossbow and had never even held one before, but he was pretty sure he could create one based on what he'd seen on Pinterest and other do-it-yourself websites.

Melledy

Harmony Melledy
Age: 16
Boardumb's Army club member

Harmony said Frederick Miller could be a little harsh at times, but she'd just zen out with a little white angelica essential oil and a quick meditation and leave the rest to karma. She said it seemed like Mr. Miller didn't like her name because he wouldn't say it very often, and when he did, it was accompanied by a little eye roll.

Harmony said that on the afternoon of October 27, as usual, the creepy old guy was at Square Pizza, but on that day, he kept looking over at them. He was obviously staring and didn't care if he was caught looking.

She said mostly he keeps to himself, but at least twice this past school year, he has walked past the group while they were playing a game and muttered something dark and creepy about Satan worship.

Harmony said she started getting nervous that he actually might be dangerous. She wanted to take a picture of him with her cell phone, but she was worried he would see her do it. That made her afraid since he was always at the restaurant at the same time as the club meetings, so he kind of knew who she was.

Harmony said she called her mom to come get her when the others started a stupid discussion about crossbows and who was a better shot. She said that made a few other people at the restaurant start giving the group dirty looks.

Harmony said she went home because she was getting creeped out, and the competition was ruined when Colton and the others left the game anyway, so nobody could be declared the winner that day.


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