Natalie Martin follow-up interview
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 - 8:30 a.m.
Natalie Martin was the head nurse at the Yoknapatawpha Acres nursing home where Jerry Shaw worked. Detectives Armstrong and Murphy interviewed her at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department. The interview was recorded with the witness's knowledge and consent.
- Detective T. Armstrong
- Detective S. Murphy
- Natalie Martin
Detective Armstrong: Thanks for coming in. Please state your name and address for the record.
Natalie Martin: 1182 Mimosa Drive, Oxford, Mississippi.
Detective Armstrong: We were hoping to catch up with you at Yoknapatawpha Acres yesterday, but we were told you weren't there.
Natalie Martin: That's correct. I quit that job. I just couldn't stand any more of the horrible way the patients were treated. At any rate, I expect to be working again within the next few days at somewhere much better.
Detective Armstrong: When did you quit?
Natalie Martin: I was off all weekend. First time I've had two days off in a row in years, let alone a weekend. Anyway, I got to work yesterday morning, and the first resident I went to check on was Rose Jenkins. I smelled her before I was even in the room. I seriously don't think her diaper had been changed all weekend. It was disgusting. And the poor thing, oh, she had such a terrible rash. My heart broke for her. I went straight to Richard's office and let him have it.
Detective Armstrong: You gave him the diaper?
Natalie Martin: No, I went off on him. I was very angry, and I was very loud. I told him all the things I had wanted to say for a long, long time. Would you believe he tried to turn it around and blame me? That man has no right to be manager. He doesn't care about anything but his pocket. I really wanted to strangle him.
Detective Armstrong: Strangle him? Were you angry enough with Jerry Shaw to kill him too?
Natalie Martin: Good grief, heavens no. Besides I said I wanted to, not that I did. I am not the type to hurt anyone physically.
Detective Murphy: How did Mr. Landrigan respond?
Natalie Martin: He didn't say a word until I was done, and then he said it was all my fault, that I should have made sure that all my bases were covered before I left work on Friday. Then I took off my name tag, said, "I quit," and walked right out of that place. I'm going in tomorrow to pick up my paycheck. I might need an escort.
Detective Murphy: Why do you say that? Do you think someone might hurt you when you go back?
Natalie Martin: I wouldn't put anything past that man. Richard knew that the residents were being poorly cared for. He not only didn't care, he encouraged it.
Detective Murphy: How so?
Natalie Martin: Whenever I would complain– well, let me give you an example. One day, I went into Rose and Magnolia's room, and Jerry was in there and Maggie was begging him to hang a clock that she had. Bless her heart, Maggie is a cantankerous woman and she's obsessed with time, but Jerry just gave her the runaround.
Detective Murphy: What do you mean?
Natalie Martin: He would say nasty things like, "You got a date, at your age?" or "You taking medicine?" He was being mean. I told him to stop it and hang the clock. He just ignored me and walked out of the room.
Detective Murphy: Was that the end of it?
Natalie Martin: No, I followed him, asking him to just do this one thing without making a big deal out of it. But then Richard walked by and overheard us. Richard said, "Don't you dare hang that clock without a work order."
Detective Armstrong: What did he mean by work order?
Natalie Martin: Anytime any of us did anything that wasn't in our job description, we had to go to him for a work order. I think he was actually billing the residents for these tiny little chores. It makes my blood boil just to think about him.
Detective Armstrong: When was this discussion about the clock?
Natalie Martin: Last week, mid-week, I think.
Detective Armstrong: You don't know which day?
Natalie Martin: I'm sorry.
Detective Armstrong: Was it the day Jerry was killed?
Natalie Martin: I don't think so. Maybe the day before though?
Detective Murphy: Have you had any contact with Mr. Landrigan since you left?
Natalie Martin: He called me last night and asked me if I wanted to change my mind about quitting. The deluded fellow thought I would come back.
Detective Armstrong: What did you say?
Natalie Martin: Nothing. I hung up on him.
Detective Armstrong: Did you report what you saw with Mrs. Jenkins to anyone else other than Mr. Landrigan?
Natalie Martin: You better believe it. I filed a complaint with the Health Department yesterday afternoon.
Detective Armstrong: Anyone else?
Natalie Martin: I also called her daughter, Margery. I knew she'd want to know. Listen, I want to help you get that no-good, uh, jerk, but I have an interview at the hospital in 25 minutes. May I go? I want to get there early.
Detective Armstrong: Sure. Thank you for your time. We'll be in touch if we have any more questions. Good luck with the interview.
Natalie Martin: Thanks.
Interview ended: 9:05 a.m.