Woman with short red hair

Lauren Brown interview #2

Monday, July 24, 2023 – 2:53 p.m.

Lauren Brown is Katy Brown's mother.

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


  • Detective T. Armstrong
  • Detective Samantha Murphy
  • Lauren Brown

Detective Murphy: Hello. I'm sorry we had to call you back, Mrs. Brown.

Lauren Brown: I really don't know why you did. I'm not in any condition for more of your questions.

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

Lauren Brown: This is so unnecessary. As you know, my name is Lauren Brown, and I live at 202 Williams Avenue.

Detective Armstrong: Mrs. Brown, when was the last time you spoke to Gary Burnhart?

Lauren Brown: Gary? Why?

Detective Armstrong: He's Katy's father, right?

Lauren Brown: Richard is Katy's father.

Detective Armstrong: Let me clarify. Gary Burnhart is Katy's biological father.

Lauren Brown: Yes. So what? We haven't seen or heard from him in 17 years.

Detective Armstrong: In all those years, he's never reached out to you or Katy? He's never expressed any interest in renewing contact with his daughter?

Lauren Brown: Ha! That's the last thing he'd do. She was nothing more than an annoyance to him. He never cared about her.

Detective Armstrong: You don't think he might've changed over the years?

Lauren Brown: I've never thought about it. I don't care whether he's changed or not. He hasn't been a part of our lives since Katy was a baby, and he never will be again.

Detective Murphy: Mrs. Brown, did Katy ever talk to you about any trouble she was having with anyone at school?

Lauren Brown: She and those cheerleaders were always squabbling about something. What of it?

Detective Murphy: Were you ever concerned that the squabbling might escalate?

Lauren Brown: Those girls are too vapid to maintain any sort of serious disagreement for more than a few minutes, so no, I wasn't concerned.

Detective Murphy: What about trouble with someone other than cheerleaders?

Lauren Brown: Everyone loved Katy. What are you suggesting?

Detective Murphy: Sometimes, teenagers' emotions can be volatile. Even people who love each other sometimes argue.

Lauren Brown: Even if that's true, none of Katy's friends would get so upset that they'd kill her. The very idea is ludicrous. They're just children.

Detective Murphy: What about closer to home? Did you or your husband ever have disagreements with Katy?

Lauren Brown: She's a teenager. Of course, we've had disagreements, but none of them were serious. My family gets along well with one another. Richard and I never fight, and neither did the kids. What are you getting at?

Detective Murphy: So, Katy and Cody never had disagreements? That's unusual for teenage siblings.

Lauren Brown: I wouldn't know about that. What I know is Cody adored Katy. He's having a very hard time dealing with all this. He stays in his room with the door closed. We can hear him crying, but he won't let us in. We can't console him at all.

Detective Murphy: That must be very difficult for all of you.

Lauren Brown: Well, that's Cody. He's always been difficult. Clinging to his sister all the time. She could've used that influence to make him do something with himself, but did she? No, she just coddled him. She's the one who got him that mascot job. Can you believe anyone would want that?

Detective Murphy: Cody seems to enjoy it.

Lauren Brown: Of course he does. It's precisely the kind of common drivel he's always drawn to, but he can't even do that right. Do you know he somehow tore a contact lens getting into or out of that silly costume? How he managed that, I can't begin to tell you. He tried to hide it from us, but any idiot could tell something was wrong. Who goes around trying to see with only one contact? He finally admitted it, and we had to buy replacements.

Detective Murphy: When did this happen?

Lauren Brown: I don't know when he did it or how long he'd been walking around like that, but we had to get the replacements this week. Can you imagine? With everything else that's happening?

Detective Murphy: Since this just happened, you must have his prescription handy.

Lauren Brown: Of course, I have it. We never know when that clumsy boy will need another replacement.

Detective Murphy: Would you be willing to share it with us?

Lauren Brown: Whatever for?

Detective Murphy: It might help us find Katy's killer.

Lauren Brown: I can't imagine how, but if it'll help, I'll be happy to share it. If I promise to send you a copy this afternoon, can we be done for today? I can't talk about these things anymore. I really need to just rest.

Detective Murphy: We appreciate your cooperation, Mrs. Brown. Here's my card. My email address is at the bottom. You can send the prescription information there. Thank you again for coming in today.

Lauren Brown: Just find the person who killed my daughter. Knowing that person is out there somewhere, running around free, it's … intolerable.

Interview ended – 3:12 p.m.


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