Max Snyder interview #3
Tuesday, January 15, 2019 – 5:00 p.m.
Max Snyder organized the Elvis conference and invited Jared Plunk to be the keynote speaker.
Detectives Murphy and Parker re-interviewed him at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
- Detective S. Murphy
- Detective E. Parker
- Max Snyder
Detective Parker: Thank you for coming in again, Mr. Snyder. We do appreciate your time.
Max Snyder: Of course, Detective. I'm happy to help in any way that I can. Do you need my address and all that again?
Detective Parker: Yes, if you would please.
Max Snyder: I'm Max Snyder. I live at 2216 Church Street in Oxford, and I organized the Elvis conference. Now, what can I help you with?
Detective Murphy: We have a few more questions for you. How did Mr. Plunk's death end up affecting your conference?
Max Snyder: I obviously had to do some scrambling to find another speaker, but I was able to talk Sonya Davis into being our keynote speaker again. She was still kind of upset about being asked to step aside for Jared, so it took a little financial persuasion, but in the end, she was willing to help.
Detective Parker: Financial persuasion? I thought the conference didn't have a lot of money to spend.
Max Snyder: Well, besides ridding the world of a vile man, Jared's murder also brought more recognition to our conference. Paid attendance was higher than expected, which helped us financially. I guess Jared finally did some good for Elvis in spite of himself.
Detective Parker: Well, if Mr. Plunk was going to reveal letters that would provide more insight into Elvis' life, wouldn't that be a good thing?
Max Snyder: Detective, the image of Elvis is one that encourages people across the world. He's famous for being a singer, a movie star, and a vibrant, larger-than-life personality. If the letters contradicted that image in any way, it would be damaging to his legacy.
Detective Murphy: Which would be damaging to the conference?
Max Snyder: I suppose it would, but while I love our conference and would do almost anything for it, I'm much more concerned about Elvis' legacy.
Detective Murphy: These letters that Mr. Plunk had, what makes you think they would've been damaging?
Max Snyder: Well, I'm just assuming because Jared said they could be.
Detective Parker: Wait a minute. If you're so concerned about protecting Elvis' legacy, why would you invite Jared Plunk to be the keynote speaker when you knew that what he was going to say would be, as you put it, damaging?
Max Snyder: Well, I didn't know that when I booked him. He just said he'd uncovered new information about Elvis that no one had ever heard before. It wasn't until after we'd started promoting his appearance at the conference that I started hearing rumors that he might be planning an ambush.
Detective Parker: An ambush?
Max Snyder: Like I said, damaging Elvis' reputation. Disrespecting what he meant to people.
Detective Parker: Why not just fire him then? Uninvite him?
Max Snyder: Because we'd already been advertising that he would be there. Because if we canceled, we'd still have to pay him, and we couldn't afford that. Because maybe he was wrong about what the letters would mean to people.
Detective Murphy: Did you ever actually see the letters?
Max Snyder: No, not personally. Jared promised he'd give me copies of them before his presentation, but he never did.
Detective Murphy: Then how do you know he really had these letters?
Max Snyder: Are you saying he didn't have them? That he just made the whole thing up to make money or stir up trouble or something?
Detective Parker: We're not Elvis experts, Mr. Snyder. That would be your area of expertise. How were you planning to verify that Elvis Presley really did write the letters?
Max Snyder: I have known documents that Elvis wrote and signed to use for comparison, and I had a handwriting analysis expert standing by. But then Jared was murdered, and I doubt if anyone knows where the letters are now. Maybe the killer has them. If you do catch the person who did this and you find the letters, I would appreciate it if you'd allow me to see them.
Detective Murphy: Anything found will be placed in evidence until the case is over, then returned to the owner. That would be Mrs. Plunk now.
Max Snyder: Oh my, I hadn't thought of her being the owner now. I wonder if she'll release them to me. I know she's not a big Elvis fan. Maybe she'd give me the letters since she'll probably have no use for them. Do you think it's too soon to ask her?
Detective Murphy: Perhaps we should find the letters first, Mr. Snyder.
Max Snyder: Oh, yes, of course. I'm sorry. I'm always thinking and planning ahead, a habit I've had since I was a child.
Detective Parker: You've been a big Elvis fan ever since you were a child, haven't you?
Max Snyder: Well, we lived with my Aunt Georgia, you know, and she was very devoted to Elvis. I guess her devotion rubbed off on me. I've loved Elvis since I was little. It's for people like my aunt that I want to preserve his legacy. He was so loved by so many.
Detective Murphy: You seem to have a deep passion for Elvis. Do you like to think of Elvis as a young man or in his later years?
Max Snyder: I don't think it matters how one thinks of Elvis. He was more vibrant when he was younger—aren't we all?—but when he got older, he had the wisdom of experience, and that experience informed his performances, made them richer, deeper.
Detective Parker: There were a lot of people at the conference wearing Elvis costumes. Do you have a costume?
Max Snyder: Yes, both my wife and I do. We enjoy dressing up in them from time to time as much as any Elvis fan does.
Detective Murphy: When was the last time you wore yours?
Max Snyder: I tried it on a couple weeks before the conference. I wanted to make sure it still fit, in case we decided to wear them at some point during the conference weekend.
Detective Murphy: Your wife wore hers as well?
Max Snyder: Yes, she did try hers on, but we didn't end up wearing them at the conference. There wasn't time with everything else that happened.
Detective Parker: This is so fascinating. What does your costume look like? Did you go with the '50s look? Jailhouse Rock? The Rhinestone Cowboy jumpsuit?
Max Snyder: Rhinestone Cowboy was Glen Campbell, young lady. How could you confuse him with the King?
Detective Parker: I apologize. I meant the white jumpsuit with the rhinestones.
Max Snyder: That's a common misconception. There wasn't just one jumpsuit, and they weren't all white.
Detective Parker: But yours is white.
Max Snyder: Yes, it is.
Detective Parker: And your wife's is white too?
Max Snyder: Yes.
Detective Parker: And when you two wear you jumpsuits, do you do the whole thing with the scarf and the wig and everything?
Max Snyder: That's the only way to do it. If you only do it halfway, you just look stupid.
Detective Parker: That's so great. I'd love to see them. If I came by your house, could you show them to me?
Max Snyder: I guess so. I'm not sure where they are right now. My wife takes care of those things.
Detective Parker: Well, it's so lucky that you both wore them recently since that'll probably make it easier to find them.
Max Snyder: I guess you're right. You'd have to ask Lindsey about that.
Detective Parker: Thank you. I will. I'm looking forward to that.
Detective Murphy: Well, Mr. Snyder, we don't want to take any more of your time today. Thank you again for coming in.
Interview ended – 5:28 p.m.