Sylvia Mason interview #2
Thursday, December 15, 2022 – 11:00 a.m.
Sylvia Mason was a close friend of Jackson Walker.
Detectives Murphy and Parker spoke with her again at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
- Detective S. Murphy
- Detective E. Parker
- Sylvia Mason
Sylvia Mason: I don't understand, detective. Jackson died of the flu.
Detective Parker: Before we start, I need you to state your name and address for the record.
Sylvia Mason: Of course. I'm Sylvia Ann Mason, and I live at 342 Elm Street in Oxford. I'm confused.
Detective Murphy: Well, let's see if we can't clear some things up. The nature of the investigation has shifted, and we're now treating Jackson Walker's death as a homicide.
Sylvia Mason: Oh, no. No. This is awful news. Who would want to hurt Jackson?
Detective Murphy: That's what we're going to find out. Ms. Mason, you weren't completely honest with us the last time we spoke, so it is imperative that you fully cooperate today. Understand?
Sylvia Mason: But I was honest with you, detective. Why would you say that I wasn't?
Detective Parker: Your relationship with Adam Cooper is why. When we questioned you before, you didn't say you went out with him for almost a year. You referred to him as "the guy Jackson worked with." Why withhold that information?
Sylvia Mason: I…I just got used to speaking of Adam in the most casual of terms. He can be problematic, detective. He's prone to…well…I don't want to accuse him of violence, but he has a very nasty temper. Very nasty.
Detective Parker: You didn't know about that when you started seeing him?
Sylvia Mason: We met on a dating app. It's not like we had any mutual friends who could warn us about each other's… personality quirks.
Detective Murphy: You're saying Adam's temper is why you didn't tell us he's your ex-boyfriend?
Sylvia Mason: Adam was livid when I ended it. He wouldn't accept it and move on. I had to set very firm boundaries. For my safety. For the safety of my team. My co-workers.
Detective Parker: So you felt unsafe? Did he threaten you?
Sylvia Mason: Not verbally, but his actions were threatening.
Detective Parker: For example?
Sylvia Mason: He was exceedingly jealous, and if I didn't text him back within five minutes, he'd blow up my phone. Then if I didn't answer his call— my God, once he showed up at my work and caught me talking to the custodian. Accused me of sleeping with him. Poor guy was just asking about a leaky toilet.
Detective Murphy: When was this?
Sylvia Mason: September. It's when I started thinking I might have to end it with Adam. Then when I tried, he just couldn't accept it. He made things just awful.
Detective Murphy: How so?
Sylvia Mason: This breakup took almost two weeks. He'd drive past my house. He'd call or text a dozen times a day. I blocked his number. It seemed like any time I mentioned his name, he'd find out—so I stopped talking about him except in very casual terms. Anything else, and he'd take it as an invitation. And Jackson helped me through all that. I really fell for him. I mean, I told Adam that Jackson was my soulmate.
Detective Parker: Was he?
Sylvia Mason: I thought so. I hoped so. And even though Jackson's feelings weren't reciprocal, I held out hope for us. So I told Adam there was no chance he and I would ever be together because I loved Jackson. That's what they fought about—at Ole Miss. Adam attacked Jackson. Oh, my God, detective! Adam attacked Jackson! Did he do this? Did he? Adam killed him!
Detective Murphy: We're investigating all possibilities, Ms. Mason. Did Jackson indicate he was afraid of Adam after they fought?
Sylvia Mason: You have to get him! He's— he's unstable! He resorts to violence! Why are you here questioning me? Adam should be in here! I begged him not to do anything rash!
Detective Parker: You spoke to Adam?
Sylvia Mason: Yes, he called me on Sunday to make one last-ditch effort to win me back. I tried my best to make him understand that I loved Jackson. That he needed to move on! To move past this obsession with me. But it must've triggered this violent reaction.
Detective Parker: Even though Jackson didn't reciprocate?
Sylvia Mason: That didn't matter — just the fact that I loved Jackson was enough. I rejected Adam for Jackson. I thought if I told Adam I had found my soulmate, he would leave me alone.
Detective Murphy: What about Joshua?
Sylvia Mason: Josh didn't do this!
Detective Murphy: So you know Joshua?
Sylvia Mason: I— I only met him.
Detective Parker: When?
Sylvia Mason About a month ago? He was at a bar with Jeff. Jackson's brothers, Jeff and Joshua, were stranded. Jackson and I were on a date, I guess you could call it. They needed a ride, so Jeff called Jackson. We picked them up. Gave them a ride to Joshua's house.
Detective Parker: You were on a date with Jackson? I thought he wasn't that into you.
Sylvia Mason: Well, we hung out a lot. As humiliating as it was that he wasn't into me, as you put it, we hung out a lot.
Detective Parker: How'd it go at the bar?
Sylvia Mason: It was fine. It was nice to meet his family. It was sorta fun.
Detective Murphy: Did Jackson think it was sorta fun?
Sylvia Mason: I think Jackson was irritated.
Detective Murphy: Because you flirted with Joshua?
Sylvia Mason: What? I didn't flirt with Joshua.
Detective Parker: We have an eyewitness who says you did and that Joshua flirted back. Did you want to rethink your answer?
Sylvia Mason: Look. Joshua is a fun guy. Did we joke? Yes. Did we drink? Yes. Was that flirting? I guess some people might see it that way.
Detective Parker: Did you exchange numbers with Joshua?
Sylvia Mason: Well, yeah, and we followed each other on social media. It's not a big deal.
Detective Murphy: Have you seen Joshua since that night at the bar?
Sylvia Mason: I have not.
Detective Murphy: Did you and Jeff exchange numbers and follow each other on social media?
Sylvia Mason: No, but I don't think Jeff is on social media. Seriously, detectives, if you really think Jackson was—God, I can't even say it—murdered, I'm afraid it might be my fault. I should never have told Adam about my feelings for Jackson. I'm just…sick about it. Absolutely sick. Please tell me you'll do everything you can to get to the bottom of this.
Detective Parker: Of course, we will.
Sylvia Mason: Thank you. Do you have any more questions?
Detective Murphy: Not at the moment. You're free to go.
Sylvia Mason: Thank you.
Interview ended – 11:23 a.m.