Smiling man with close-cropped dark hair and a thin mustache

Leo Ingram interview #2

Thursday, April 4, 2024 – 9:34 a.m.

Leo Ingram is the associate pastor at the Fellowship of the Holy Spirit church and found the body of his colleague, Wendell Martinson.

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


  • Detective S. Murphy
  • Detective E. Parker
  • Leo Ingram

Detective Murphy: Thanks for talking with us again. Would you please state your name and address for the record?

Leo Ingram: My name is Leo Ingram, and my address is 1503 Jefferson Avenue.

Detective Murphy: Do you know a Reverend Gideon Horner?

Leo Ingram: Yes, of course. He preaches at Trinity Church. You could say we've become friends over the years. He even asked me to join him there once.

Detective Parker: Do you have any idea why Pastor Martinson would ask Reverend Horner to examine the books for the Fellowship of the Holy Spirit?

Leo Ingram: You mean the church's financial records? I have no idea. Perhaps he was suggesting ways that Reverend Horner could do things differently.

Detective Parker: Perhaps Pastor Martinson didn't want to alert you to his suspicions.

Leo Ingram: What suspicions?

Detective Parker: Why don't you tell us?

Leo Ingram: He never mentioned anything to me about suspicions.

Detective Parker: No? Can you explain why that might be?

Leo Ingram: I can't. But then the pastor already had a financial advisor, Joey Kemp.

Detective Parker: And what's your impression of Joey Kemp?

Leo Ingram: He's a nice guy, seems to know what he's doing.

Detective Parker: If, say, someone was stealing from the church, do you think Joey would catch that?

Leo Ingram: Stealing from the church?

Detective Murphy: Reverend Horner mentioned something else, a couple who may have resented Pastor Martinson's interference with their marriage.

Leo Ingram: Emmett Sanford and Deirdre Littleton? I wouldn't say he interfered with their marriage. They came to him for counseling, and he did his best to help them through their trials.

Detective Murphy: He brought them back together?

Leo Ingram: Unfortunately, they decided to divorce. Who do you think was stealing from the church?

Detective Parker: I think it's strange Pastor Martinson didn't bring you in on the investigation. Can you imagine why he might not want you, his associate, to be aware of his concerns?

Leo Ingram: I cannot.

Detective Parker: Pastor Martinson apparently felt the need to look outside the church for guidance. Does that surprise you?

Leo Ingram: He must have had his reasons.

Detective Murphy: Emmett and Deirdre. Did they approach Pastor Martinson together?

Leo Ingram: I believe Deirdre spoke to the pastor first, seeking help and solace. As I said, Pastor Martinson did everything in his power to make things right between them.

Detective Murphy: But he failed. And both of them left the church.

Leo Ingram: I saw Deirdre on Easter morning, and I believe she would have found her way back to the church if not for the horrible event that occurred.

Detective Murphy: And how might you have handled the couple differently?

Leo Ingram: I was not in the habit of second-guessing Pastor Martinson.

Detective Murphy: He didn't ask you for advice?

Leo Ingram: We discussed many of the issues facing the church, and we brainstormed various approaches we might take.

Detective Parker: And yet he didn't tell you about any missing money?

Leo Ingram: Apparently not.

Detective Parker: You mentioned Reverend Horner offering you a position. Was that before he examined the books?

Leo Ingram: I don't know when he examined the books.

Detective Murphy: "Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy." What does that mean to you?

Leo Ingram: You're familiar with Proverbs 28:13.

Detective Murphy: Do you agree with the statement?

Leo Ingram: The word of the Lord is the guiding principle of my life.

Detective Parker: Anything you particularly want to get off your chest?

Leo Ingram: No.

Detective Murphy: You mentioned Emmett and Deirdre, their marriage, and their subsequent divorce. What about their son, Liam? How did he take what happened?

Leo Ingram: He was angry, as only teenagers can be. While I spoke with Liam a few times about his parents, he seemed to prefer talking with Pastor Martinson.

Detective Murphy: Would you say that was typical?

Leo Ingram: Members of a congregation do play favorites, find they have an easier time talking to one person versus another. It's only human.

Detective Parker: You don't seem to take many of the slights you suffered under Pastor Martinson personally. And yet you admit looking elsewhere. Why is that?

Leo Ingram: I know what you're trying to do, and while I appreciate you trying to bring the murderer of Pastor Martinson to justice, I don't appreciate that tack you seem to be taking. If you think I've done something wrong, you should arrest me. Otherwise, you should stop making insinuations. I think we're done here.

Interview ended – 10:03 a.m.


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