Smiling young woman with brown hair

Paula Kruse interview

Tuesday, July 18, 2023 – 3:05 p.m.

Another witness suggested that Paula Kruse might have a reason to kill Katy Brown, so investigators asked Miss Kruse to come in for a conversation.

Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed her at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.


  • Detective T. Armstrong
  • Detective S. Murphy
  • Paula Kruse

Detective Murphy: Thank you for coming in, Miss Kruse.

Paula Kruse: You're very welcome, ma'am.

Detective Murphy: Would you please state your name and address for our records?

Paula Kruse: Sure. My name is Paula Kruse, and I live at 859 Mississippi 7, Oxford, Mississippi.

Detective Murphy: We have a few questions to ask you this afternoon—

Paula Kruse: Is it about Katy? It's terrible what happened to her. Do you know yet who killed her?

Detective Armstrong: Katy was going out with a friend of yours, wasn't she?

Paula Kruse: So what? Tim and I are friends. I was happy for him.

Detective Armstrong: You weren't even a little bit jealous?

Paula Kruse: Where did you hear that? It's a lie, whoever said it. Those kids at school, none of them like me. They're the ones who are jealous.

Detective Murphy: It would be understandable if you wanted to be the one dating Tim. He's the varsity quarterback, so he's pretty popular, and you two have been friends for quite a while now. You and Tim haven't ever dated?

Paula Kruse: Tim and I are very close friends. That's all.

Detective Murphy: What about now? Now that Katy's out of the picture?

Paula Kruse: Tim's grieving. Katy was just killed. I'm helping him through. That's what friends are for.

Detective Murphy: We heard you're dating.

Paula Kruse: It might look that way to others.

Detective Armstrong: It's not possible?

Paula Kruse: Oh, sure. His girlfriend was just killed, but he's already moved on to someone else. What kind of person do you think he is?

Detective Armstrong: So you and Tim are not dating?

Paula Kruse: Dating is a social norm dictated by conventional society.

Detective Armstrong: So that's a no?

Paula Kruse: No, we're not dating. Are you happy?

Detective Armstrong: The question is, are you happy? Now that Katy's dead, you get to spend a lot more time with Tim. You got your best friend back. Wouldn't you say her death has worked to your advantage?

Paula Kruse: My friend is in pain. I would never do that to him.

Detective Murphy: What about Tim? Maybe Katy was starting to crowd him, demanding that he not hang around so much with other people. Maybe he valued your friendship so much that he refused.

Paula Kruse: Is blaming the boyfriend the best you can do? What, did you see that on TV or something?

Detective Armstrong: Maybe Tim did it.

Paula Kruse: Maybe you're just looking to put someone behind bars, and you don't care who.

Detective Armstrong: Miss Kruse, you seem very confrontational. Did you ever have words with Katy?

Paula Kruse: Like I would bother to talk to Miss Nose in the Air. She's been that way since grade school.

Detective Armstrong: Tim liked her well enough to date her for a year.

Paula Kruse: No. His family made him ask her out, and then she wouldn't let him go.

Detective Armstrong: What, the gorgeous young cheerleader forced the star quarterback to go to the movies with her, to go out to eat with her, to kiss her, and—?

Paula Kruse: You're just trying to make me mad.

Detective Murphy: What did you mean when you said she wouldn't let him go?

Paula Kruse: Katy threatened him.

Detective Murphy: Threatened him how?

Paula Kruse: She said she would spread lies and rumors about him all over the school. Accuse him of things he'd never do.

Detective Murphy: Did you ever hear her making these threats?

Paula Kruse: I didn't need to. Tim would never lie to me.

Detective Armstrong: If what you're saying is true, then Katy's murder was the answer to Tim's prayers. Was it a gift from his longtime friend? Or maybe it was his gift to you? Maybe you did it together, like a class project.

Paula Kruse: So many people are glad to see Katy dead. I can't believe you're wasting your time harassing me with these far-out theories.

Detective Murphy: Care to give us any names?

Paula Kruse: I'm not going to be your stool. If you've been talking to people, you know how they feel.

Detective Armstrong: Some of them feel that you have more than enough motive to kill Katy Brown.

Paula Kruse: Of course, they'd like me to take the blame. I'm not one of them.

Detective Armstrong: Is Tim one of them?

Paula Kruse: His parents made sure of it.

Detective Armstrong: Is that why no one else has mentioned the possibility that Tim didn't love Katy? Because he's one of them?

Paula Kruse: How should I know why those people say or don't say something?

Detective Armstrong: Or maybe he just never said that to anybody but you. I wonder why that might be.

Paula Kruse: Don't bother trying to trick me.

Detective Murphy: Where were you Saturday morning?

Paula Kruse: At home with my parents. Ask them if you want. They'll vouch for me.

Detective Murphy: What were you doing?

Paula Kruse: Why does that matter?

Detective Murphy: Did you see or talk to anyone besides your parents that morning?

Paula Kruse: If you want to know where I was, talk to my parents.

Detective Armstrong: Would they cover for you if you weren't at home like you claim?

Paula Kruse: So now not only am I a liar, but my parents are too? That's nice.

Detective Armstrong: I don't know that you're a liar. Maybe you are. Maybe you're not. Did you kill Katy?

Paula Kruse: No way would I do something like that! I told you. I didn't have anything against Katy.

Detective Armstrong: Uh-huh.

Paula Kruse: Look, I don't know who killed Katy, but it wasn't me, and it wasn't Tim. Why don't you find the person who really did it instead of wasting time on us?

Detective Murphy: Thanks for coming in, Miss Kruse. We'll be in touch if we have any more questions.

Interview ended – 3:32 p.m.


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