Carmen Rodriguez interview
Tuesday, April 19, 2022 – 10:40 a.m.
The coroner's office notified the detectives that a matchbook recovered from the jeans pocket of the Kelly Woods victim had an identifiable fingerprint on it.
Detective Murphy attempted to contact the man at his residence but found only his live-in girlfriend there, so she spoke with the woman instead.
- Detective S. Murphy
- Carmen Rodriguez
Detective Murphy: Good morning, ma'am. I'm Detective Samantha Murphy with the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department. I'd like to speak to Willie King. Is he in, please?
Carmen Rodriguez: He's not here. I threw him out Friday night. He's gone. What has he done?
Detective Murphy: Do you know where he is?
Carmen Rodriguez: Don't know, don't care.
Detective Murphy: We need to speak to him. Are you his wife? Could you give me your full name, please?
Carmen Rodriguez: His wife? Ah, I should be so lucky to have him as a husband. No. We live together. I've wasted two years on this man. What has he done?
Detective Murphy: And your name, ma'am?
Carmen Rodriguez: Carmen Maria Rodriguez. But you didn't tell me. What's he done?
Detective Murphy: We need to ask Mr. King some questions related to an ongoing investigation.
Carmen Rodriguez: I told him, one day, it would happen. I told him to stop with the drugs. Does he listen? No, he listens to no one.
Detective Murphy: When was the last time you spoke to Mr. King?
Carmen Rodriguez: That night at Proud Larry's. He had his hands all over that woman. I told him I am not putting up with that.
Detective Murphy: And this was last Friday, five days ago?
Carmen Rodriguez: Yes. No. I don't know. The 15th it was, I believe. I told him, come get your stuff and get out of my life. I put his things on the porch because … well, I don't even want to see him, you know? Saturday morning, his stuff was gone.
Detective Murphy: Did you put all of Mr. King's belongings outside?
Carmen Rodriguez: No, just his clothes.
Detective Murphy: Do you know where he went after he left Proud Larry's Friday night?
Carmen Rodriguez: Hound Dog's. His drummer, Danny Morgan. Okay, I called over there on Saturday. I thought he was with that woman, but Hound Dog tells me he's alone. He tells me they're going fishing at Sardis Lake for a few days. But by now, they're in New Orleans.
Detective Murphy: Did you speak to Mr. King on the phone that day while he was at Mr. Morgan's?
Carmen Rodriguez: No, I did not! He hadn't apologized then, and he still hasn't now.
Detective Murphy: Have you heard from Mr. King since then?
Carmen Rodriguez: No.
Detective Murphy: Do you know where in New Orleans he might be?
Carmen Rodriguez: They're playing at The Howlin' Wolf.
Detective Murphy: How do you know where he is if you haven't spoken to him?
Carmen Rodriguez: I'm the band's bookkeeper, so I know their schedule. If they hadn't shown up for a gig, I would've heard about it. They won't be back in Oxford until next week.
Detective Murphy: Do you know where they might be staying in New Orleans?
Carmen Rodriguez: Last time we were there, we stayed at the Landmark on Rampart Street, not right in the Quarter but close enough. They might be there.
Detective Murphy: You know, I can't help feeling that I know you from somewhere.
Carmen Rodriguez: I'm a law-abiding citizen, detective.
Detective Murphy: I remember now. You're that comic Carmen Gettit. I've seen you do stand-up here in town.
Carmen Rodriguez: Oh? How nice to be recognized.
Detective Murphy: Gettit is your stage name?
Carmen Rodriguez: You got it.
Detective Murphy: I really enjoy your act when I get a chance to see it. Do you have any new jokes you'd like to try out on me?
Carmen Rodriguez: Um … not off the top of my head. You know, I have the greatest respect for the job you police do. Would you like a doughnut?
Detective Murphy: Cute. Here's my card. We'll try to contact Mr. King in New Orleans, but if he does call you, please ask him to get in touch with me at the sheriff's department immediately. It would also be a big help if you could give us a call too, just to let us know you heard from him.
Carmen Rodriguez: I understand.
Detective Murphy: Thank you for your time, Ms. Rodriguez. We'd appreciate it if you didn't leave town until after we've spoken to Mr. King, okay?
Carmen Rodriguez: Me? I'm not going anywhere. I'm at Proud Larry's this Friday. Why don't you stop by?
Detective Murphy: I'll try to do that. You have a good day now, Ms. Rodriguez.
Interview ended – 10:59 a.m.