Wednesday, May 4, 2022 – 11:30 a.m.
According to witnesses and photographic evidence, Blake Stillwater was Wendy Holloway's lover though he denies their relationship was anything more than professional.
Detective Murphy dropped by to speak with Mr. Stillwater at his residence, 238 Highway 6 West. They met in Mr. Stillwater's study.
- Detective S. Murphy
- Blake Stillwater
Blake Stillwater: Thank you, Mary Lee. You can close the door on your way out. Detective, this is a surprise. Please have a seat. What can I do for you?
Detective Murphy: Thanks for taking the time to see me. I wanted to talk to you some more about Wendy Holloway.
Blake Stillwater: Detective, we've been over this.
Detective Murphy: You did employ her to help you with research, didn't you?
Blake Stillwater: Yes, I did.
Detective Murphy: Okay, then, as her employer, maybe you can help me figure out a few things.
Blake Stillwater: You understand that I can't discuss the plot details of my book?
Detective Murphy: Of course.
Blake Stillwater: Then, with that understanding, I'll tell you whatever I can—as her employer.
Detective Murphy: I appreciate that. Did Wendy ever talk to you about her personal relationships?
Blake Stillwater: Personal relationships?
Detective Murphy: Friends, family?
Blake Stillwater: I see. I believe she mentioned a friend back in Seattle, Julie or Jenny, maybe. And she had a brother in Memphis.
Detective Murphy: What did she say about them?
Blake Stillwater: I don't recall exactly. Her friend in Seattle was someone she'd worked with and also her roommate when she lived there. As far as her brother, I believe they had fallen out of touch over the years but reconnected after she moved here.
Detective Murphy: Did she mention any disagreements or trouble with either of them?
Blake Stillwater: I doubt she would discuss anything like that with me.
Detective Murphy: I see. What about boyfriends?
Blake Stillwater: I— I beg your pardon?
Detective Murphy: Boyfriends. You know, men she was seeing. We know she had an active social life, and of course, you told us that the two of you weren't involved, so I thought maybe you knew who else she was seeing.
Blake Stillwater: Who else?
Detective Murphy: Who she was seeing. We know who some of the men in her life were, but maybe you can tell me which ones she was intimately involved with.
Blake Stillwater: Which ones? You think she was involved with more than one man?
Detective Murphy: Could be. It's not like she had a steady boyfriend. Is it?
Blake Stillwater: I don't— I wouldn't—
Detective Murphy: We know she had relationships with that real estate developer, Michael Robbins, and with the musician, Willie King, among others. We were thinking maybe she was intimate with both of them? Maybe it created some kind of lovers' triangle that led to her death?
Blake Stillwater: She wasn't sleeping with either one of those … gentlemen.
Detective Murphy: How can you be so sure?
Blake Stillwater: I know Wendy. She wouldn't get involved with men like that.
Detective Murphy: I don't know. We spoke to both of those guys, and the way they talked about her ... well, you know how guys can be.
Blake Stillwater: That is not true! How dare you? She wasn't some kind of— She was a bright, vivacious, discerning woman. She would never— how could you suggest something like that?
Detective Murphy: You know, I've been doing this a long time now, and I've never seen an employer have such a strong reaction to a discussion of an employee's possible romantic life.
Blake Stillwater: Your insinuations about Wendy are offensive, and she's not here to defend herself.
Detective Murphy: No, she isn't. And that's why I'm here. So how about we cut the crap? Talk to me, Blake. You know, and I know you were sleeping with Wendy.
Blake Stillwater: I was not—
Detective Murphy: Just stop. If you're worried about your family, they already know. Your son knows. Your wife knows. The PI she hired knows. Heck, my partner and I have seen photographs. Wouldn't have been our choice, you understand, but some parts of our job aren't pretty.
Blake Stillwater: What the hell are you talking about? What photographs?
Detective Murphy: Sorry. I guess I let the cat out of the bag on that one.
Blake Stillwater: My wife hired a private investigator?
Detective Murphy: With all due respect, Blake, I'm not here to help you work through your marital issues. I'm here to get your help finding out who killed Wendy. Some people think you actually cared about her, and if you did, I'd think you'd want to help us with that.
Blake Stillwater: I did … care about her. What do you want to know?
Detective Murphy: Anything you know about Wendy's relationships with her brother or with her friend, Jenny.
Blake Stillwater: You think they killed her?
Detective Murphy: Let me put it like this. Did you kill her?
Blake Stillwater: Of course not!
Detective Murphy: Did your wife or your son kill her?
Blake Stillwater: Absolutely not!
Detective Murphy: Okay, then. So let's talk about Jenny and Peter.
Blake Stillwater: Wendy was close with Jenny, trusted her. I'd say Jenny was her closest friend. I can't believe she'd have anything to do with what happened.
Detective Murphy: And Peter?
Blake Stillwater: I don't know. When she first moved here, she was happy they were talking again. She said they'd been estranged for several years. But lately … I got the sense that, I don't know, she was losing confidence in him perhaps. They were working on a business deal together, and she was getting impatient, thought he was dragging his feet.
Detective Murphy: And was he?
Blake Stillwater: I don't know. It's possible, but Wendy could also be … unrealistic about certain things. She expected everyone to work the same long hours that she did, day after day, with little or no sleep. But most of us humans can't maintain that kind of pace on an ongoing basis the way she could.
Detective Murphy: Maybe she had some help.
Blake Stillwater: What is that supposed to mean?
Detective Murphy: It's not important. Did you tell Wendy her expectations were unrealistic?
Blake Stillwater: I may have mentioned it, but she could be stubborn.
Detective Murphy: Did you give her any advice on how to handle her concerns about Peter?
Blake Stillwater: I offered her the benefit of my expertise in business and the law, but she said it was her concern, and she didn't want to burden me with it. I got the sense she wanted to handle it on her own, so I stayed out of it.
Detective Murphy: But?
Blake Stillwater: But I got the sense that things were getting worse, not better, but she still didn't want to talk about it, so I didn't ask.
Detective Murphy: As far as you could tell, was Wendy afraid of Peter at all?
Blake Stillwater: No, not at all. My sense was Peter was more shifty than threatening. You know the type of man I mean, I'm sure.
Detective Murphy: Did she ever mention being afraid of anyone? Having any concerns at all about her safety?
Blake Stillwater: Never. If she'd ever said anything like that, I would have taken action to protect her.
Detective Murphy: That's very gallant of you. Would you have been so quick to protect her if the threat was coming from your wife or your son?
Blake Stillwater: The question is irrelevant. Neither of them had any involvement, I can assure you.
Detective Murphy: How do you know?
Blake Stillwater: I know my family, detective.
Detective Murphy: Did you know your wife had consulted a psychic about your relationship with Wendy and what to do about it?
Blake Stillwater: She sometimes amuses herself by talking to such people. It means nothing.
Detective Murphy: Did you know she hired a private investigator to follow you?
Blake Stillwater: Well, I…
Detective Murphy: You didn't, did you? Did you know your son would confront Wendy about your relationship with her?
Blake Stillwater: I can't imagine he'd have the wherewithal to do something like that.
Detective Murphy: And yet, he did. We have multiple witnesses, including your son himself.
Blake Stillwater: What is your point, detective?
Detective Murphy: My point is, maybe you don't know your family as well as you think. Isn't it possible one or both of them could've threatened Wendy?
Blake Stillwater: I very much doubt it.
Detective Murphy: Isn't it possible that one or both of them could've taken action to get Wendy out of your lives? Or hired someone else to do it?
Blake Stillwater: Detective, I want to thank you for all you and the department are doing to find out what happened to Ms. Holloway, but our conversation has come to an end. I appreciate your stopping by today.
Detective Murphy: If that's the way you want it, I understand. Thank you for what you have told me today. But, sir? If I may say, you have a tendency to underestimate your family. You might want to tread more carefully going forward.
Blake Stillwater: Thank you for your input, detective. You know the way out, don't you?
Interview ended – 11:57 a.m.