Smiling young man with close-cropped light brown hair

Josh Carstairs interview #2

Monday, July 25, 2022 – 11:05 a.m.

Josh Carstairs is a landscaper, and the Byrns family is one of his clients.

Detectives Armstrong and Murphy re-interviewed him at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.


  • Detective T. Armstrong
  • Detective S. Murphy
  • Josh Carstairs

Detective Murphy: For the record, please state your name and address.

Josh Carstairs: My name is Josh Carstairs, and I live at 290 Sisk Avenue. I asked.

Detective Murphy: How's Bob?

Josh Carstairs: He's good.

Detective Armstrong: As I told you, we just have a few questions we'd like to clear up.

Josh Carstairs: Go ahead.

Detective Armstrong: On Friday, the day Alyx Byrns died, when you stopped at the Byrns' residence to touch up the garden, where did you park?

Josh Carstairs: I always park on the road. Usually near where I'll be working, if that's possible. Park on the road, and I don't inconvenience the owners. The truck also serves to advertise the company.

Detective Murphy: Last time we talked, you said you saw a green pickup going down the driveway. Was the pickup arriving or leaving?

Josh Carstairs: It was leaving the property.

Detective Armstrong: Why were your fingerprints found on the knife used to kill Alyx?

Josh Carstairs: What?

Detective Murphy: The knife used to kill Alyx. The knife that we recovered from her hand. Your fingerprints were found on that knife. Explain that.

Josh Carstairs: I assume it's my knife.

Detective Armstrong: When did you first start having feelings for Alyx?

Josh Carstairs: Whoa! Back it up a little. I assume it's my knife, but that doesn't mean I had anything to do with Alyx's death.

Detective Murphy: Are you saying you didn't feel something for Alyx?

Josh Carstairs: I thought she was attractive. Who wouldn't?

Detective Armstrong: We've got people telling us your feelings ran deeper than that.

Josh Carstairs: Okay, wait. Yes, I was attracted to Alyx. If you want the truth, I thought about her all the time.

Detective Armstrong: Obsessively?

Josh Carstairs: That doesn't give me more motive to kill her. It's just the opposite. The last thing in the world I wanted was for her to be dead.

Detective Murphy: How long had you felt that way about Alyx?

Josh Carstairs: From the first moment I saw her. First sight. I was like—wham—lost. It's like nature. Flowers respond to the sun. Bees respond to the flowers. Grass grows. Things happen, and you can't always explain them.

Detective Murphy: Did you tell Alyx how you felt?

Josh Carstairs: No. That wouldn't have been right. Alyx was an angel. You don't talk to angels.

Detective Armstrong: Then why did you call her?

Josh Carstairs: To listen to her outgoing message. I wanted to hear her voice.

Detective Armstrong: What if she answered?

Josh Carstairs: When Katie gave me Alyx's number, she said Alyx never answered calls if she didn't recognize the number. So at first, I thought that was bad news, but then I realized it was good because it meant I'd get to hear her voice on the message.

Detective Armstrong: So you would call and listen to her outgoing message then hang up?

Josh Carstairs: I was just going to do it once, but then the urge to hear her voice would come again. Some days I called a lot.

Detective Murphy: When did you get the urge to hear her voice coming out of her mouth?

Josh Carstairs: That would've been great, but she never wandered over to where I was working. Alyx was above that.

Detective Murphy: Is that why you approached her that day?

Josh Carstairs: I never approached her.

Detective Armstrong: Your knife was found in her hand.

Josh Carstairs: Must have been one I lost. Maybe she found it. Maybe one day after I left, she went to check on my work to get a little closer to me and found the knife I lost.

Detective Murphy: Are you saying you lost a knife?

Josh Carstairs: Going from property to property, getting in and out of the truck all day, sometimes I lose things. Not big things like a mower, but a knife? A glove? When I go to use something and realize it's missing, I just buy a new one to replace it.

Detective Armstrong: Did your boss know this?

Josh Carstairs: I go out with a rake and come back with a newer one, and he's going to complain?

Detective Murphy: Let's be specific. Did you replace a knife recently?

Josh Carstairs: Six weeks ago? Two months? I had the replacement knife the last time I was here. You confiscated it.

Detective Armstrong: Are you saying you left your knife at the Byrns property, and then Alyx just happened to be killed with it?

Josh Carstairs: I don't know if I lost it there. I don't use the knife at every job. I don't know where I lost it or how long it was before I discovered it was missing. Maybe Alyx found it. Maybe somebody else did.

Detective Murphy: How many people do you think are examining your flowerbeds?

Josh Carstairs: I don't know. I don't know where I lost it. I don't know when I lost it. All I know is that at some point, I realized I didn't have my knife, and I bought a replacement. And no, before you ask, I wouldn't have kept the receipt.

Detective Murphy: Okay, Mr. Carstairs, that's all for now. We'll be talking again soon.

Interview ended – 11:48 a.m.




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