Weldon Foyle interview
Wednesday, August 30, 2023 – 11:00 a.m.
Weldon Foyle was one of Kristi Waterson's students.
Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed him at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
- Detective T. Armstrong
- Detective S. Murphy
- Weldon Foyle
Detective Murphy: Thank you for meeting with us, Mr. Foyle.
Weldon Foyle: Of course. I'm glad to help in any way I can.
Detective Murphy: Would you please state your name and address?
Weldon Foyle: I'm Weldon Foyle. I live at 604 North 14th Street, in Apartment B.
Detective Murphy: And your occupation?
Weldon Foyle: I'm a student.
Detective Armstrong: Are you a full-time student, or do you also work?
Weldon Foyle: Both.
Detective Murphy: Could you elaborate on that, please?
Weldon Foyle: Both. It's hard to believe when you stroll through the Grove on game days and see all the Mercedes and BMWs and the silver serving sets, but not everyone who goes to Ole Miss is wealthy. I work several jobs to pay the bills, yet I'm also enrolled in full-time coursework.
Detective Murphy: That's impressive. What kind of work do you do?
Weldon Foyle: Mainly odd jobs for a variety of places. I wash dishes at a restaurant. I tutor some students. I clean yards and do household chores for a few people. I pick up some house-painting jobs now and then. I could give you a list of some of the people I work for if you'd like.
Detective Murphy: That sounds like a lot to juggle.
Weldon Foyle: I have to have jobs that will allow me to go to class and study, so I can't really maintain regular working hours. But if a merchant wants me to go in and paint their store after closing, that's perfect. Fits into my class schedule and doesn't interrupt their business.
Detective Armstrong: You must not get much sleep.
Weldon Foyle: I'm used to it.
Detective Murphy: What are you studying?
Weldon Foyle: I'm a business major.
Detective Murphy: Do you know why we wanted to speak with you today?
Weldon Foyle: I assume you're trying to find out what happened to Kristi Waterson.
Detective Murphy: And why do you think we want to talk to you specifically?
Weldon Foyle: Because her name was on a class I took. I'm sure you're talking to everybody in that class. Plus, let's be honest and lay it all out on the table. My lack of respect for Ms. Waterson was pretty well-known. If I was investigating this case, I'd talk to someone like me as well.
Detective Armstrong: Why did you lack respect for her?
Weldon Foyle: She was a horrible teacher.
Detective Armstrong: That's it?
Weldon Foyle: That's it. Plain and simple. She wasted my time.
Detective Murphy: What do you mean by that?
Weldon Foyle: Like we talked about earlier, I work a lot, and I pay my own tuition: no student loans, no rich daddy. I'm here to learn, not to beat on some first-year student in the name of Greek bonding.
Detective Armstrong: Did Kristi Waterson waste your time with Greek bonding somehow?
Weldon Foyle: No, but her class was a requirement for me, and it was a waste of time. I didn't like that. Do you know how much a three-hour-credit course costs? Granted, I'm a full-time student, and I don't pay by the credit hour, but still. Her class, which taught me nothing, took money out of my pocket and time out of my day.
Detective Murphy: Why don't you have any student loans? Statistically, aren't most Ole Miss students on some sort of financial aid?
Weldon Foyle: My father was a farmhand. He picked tobacco all his life. Most of the farm owners he worked for were on the city council, and they were responsible for passing many of the laws and regulations that governed our county. Unfortunately, although they were quick to say we couldn't run a business from our home because it violated zoning ordinances, they didn't seem to have any problem with not withholding taxes for their farmhands.
Detective Armstrong: Your point being?
Weldon Foyle: They refused to pay taxes, and my father couldn't afford to report estimated income. He probably wouldn't have known how to, even if he could, so he never paid taxes—not because he believed in breaking the law, but because his employers made it basically impossible for him to do the right thing. Since he paid no taxes, I couldn't exactly apply for financial aid without drawing attention to him.
Detective Armstrong: What about scholarships? You seem awfully driven—
Weldon Foyle: I like to think that I'm intelligent, but I'm also hard-working. I can't just show up and ace an exam. Whatever amount of intelligence I have is a result of working my brain like an athlete in the gym. That takes time. And with working throughout high school, as well as being the product of rural education, I can't claim stellar grades or test scores. If I had the opportunity to take all those expensive test prep classes, hire private tutors, or spend hours and hours a night on homework, things might have been different.
Detective Murphy: Back to Ms. Waterson. Why was her class so bad?
Weldon Foyle: She didn't know the material, for one. She was an instructor who couldn't instruct. Second, if the weather was good, you could almost guarantee that class was gonna be canceled.
Detective Murphy: Did you complain to University officials?
Weldon Foyle: Yes, I wrote several letters to her department chair. I'm sure the University's shredders got hold of those, but I'm delighted to say that my letters are quite legendary now. I hear that they're quite well-known amongst the department faculty.
Detective Armstrong: University shredders?
Weldon Foyle: Yes, the school doesn't like to attract negative attention. They shred most everything.
Detective Murphy: How do you know this?
Weldon Foyle: I picked up a gig through the student job board at the Career Center for painting the chemistry department offices and saw some things. If the chemistry department has shredders, I'm sure the business school does.
Detective Murphy: Why not change majors?
Weldon Foyle: Ms. Waterson aside, most of the business professors are good teachers, if a bit self-important.
Detective Armstrong: So why do you think they'd shred your letters?
Weldon Foyle: Scandals dominate the news these days, and corporate misdeeds have brought down more than one company. The Ole Miss business school thinks these things affect them. They like to envision themselves as CEOs, and they quiver thinking about being caught up in some disgrace. Look at what just happened with the journalism school. Anyway, I'm quite certain they would shred anything negative.
Detective Armstrong: Do you know if other students complained about Ms. Waterson?
Weldon Foyle: I doubt it. Most students are quite happy to show up two or three times a semester and receive an A. Why would they complain?
Detective Murphy: Mr. Foyle, you seem remarkably comfortable talking to us today.
Weldon Foyle: Is that wrong?
Detective Murphy: Most college students we speak with are visibly nervous, irritated, or otherwise uncomfortable. You seem very calm.
Weldon Foyle: I have nothing to be afraid of from you, so why would I be nervous? This is actually quite exciting. It's like being on a TV detective show or something. I'm glad to help you try and find the killer in any way I can.
Detective Armstrong: Since your disdain for Ms. Waterson is so evident, don't you think some people might think you're a prime suspect?
Weldon Foyle: I'm sure they do.
Detective Murphy: And should you be? Did you have anything to do with her death?
Weldon Foyle: No, I'm afraid I had nothing to do with this. My sexual preferences are quite bland, I'm afraid. I work too hard for anything very exciting.
Detective Armstrong: What does that have to do with Kristi Waterson's death?
Weldon Foyle: Oh, I just meant that I don't go in for dating teachers. I don't have the time and energy for all the coverup. She was killed by a lover, right?
Detective Murphy: What makes you think so?
Weldon Foyle: Come on. Everyone knew about her predilection for inappropriate relationships. It was only a matter of time until a jealous lover went over the deep end. Or a jilted lover. Or something. That's what always happens on the cop shows.
Detective Armstrong: This isn't a cop show, kid.
Weldon Foyle: I'm aware of that. I'm just intrigued by how you investigators work.
Detective Murphy: If you were in our place, if you were in charge of this investigation, what would you do?
Weldon Foyle: I already said what I would do. I would investigate her relationships. Granted, you're gonna need a large staff working full time to talk to all her lovers, but that's where I would begin.
Detective Armstrong: Who all were her lovers?
Weldon Foyle: I can't give you names. I suppose I should be careful to qualify my comments about her love life. It was rumored that she was as, uh, let's say, "friendly" as her father is wealthy. Her father doesn't seem to be concerned with using his money in any philanthropic ways, so I guess she was trying to spread around her own form of goodwill. But I can't give you any specifics. It was just an open secret on campus that she was very promiscuous.
Detective Murphy: Where were you on Saturday night?
Weldon Foyle: I was working. As usual. That's what those of us who aren't rich do on the weekends.
Detective Murphy: Who were you working for?
Weldon Foyle: A lady I do a lot of work for. Ms. Myra Olander hired me to do odd jobs around her house. I was there that night.
Detective Murphy: Can you think of any reason we might need to talk to you again during this investigation?
Weldon Foyle: No, I can't think of any reason you'll need to talk to me again. But then again, I wouldn't be surprised if you did. You'll talk to everyone, all of her students, most of her co-workers, and so forth. I'm sure you'll do your best to try and solve this puzzle. So in your diligent and thorough manner, it wouldn't shock me if you talked to everyone multiple times. Myself included.
Detective Armstrong: Does that bother you?
Weldon Foyle: Not at all. It'll be interesting to see how this thing plays out.
Detective Murphy: Okay, I'm sure we'll be talking to you again.
Interview ended – 11:38 a.m.