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Pauline and her friends had reason to be upset with Oscar Knight

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 – 1:00 p.m.

Pauline Jones is one of several people who Oscar Knight upset at the Marshall family reunion on August 19, 2017.

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

Participants:

  • Detective S. Murphy
  • Detective E. Parker
  • Pauline Jones

Detective Murphy: Good afternoon, Pauline. It's nice to see you again. Will you please state your name and address for the record?

Pauline Jones: My name is Pauline Jones, and I live at 1368 Jefferson Avenue in Oxford. Good afternoon, detectives. Is this more about Oscar? It's horrible, just horrible what happened to him. He wasn't a nice man, but who could have done such a thing?

Detective Murphy: We're hoping you can help us find out. Since the last time we spoke to you, have you recalled anything else that might help with our investigation?

Pauline Jones: Nothing I didn't tell you before. Oscar was being such a jerk. He was rude, and it seemed to me like he was on a mission to cause trouble. I'm not sorry for slapping him. He deserved it for being such a jackass. For the life of me, I can't figure out why he even came to the reunion.

Detective Parker: You know, I remember someone else saying Oscar was on a mission to start trouble. Do you know Jimmy Barton?

Pauline Jones: Of course. He's Liz's son. I've known him for years.

Detective Parker: Did Jimmy know Oscar Knight?

Pauline Jones: No, I don't think so. He probably saw him at the reunion, but I'm sure he hadn't met him before. Liz said Oscar left town long before Jimmy was born.

Detective Murphy: It's interesting that both of you used the same words to describe what Oscar was doing. Have you and Jimmy talked about him?

Pauline Jones: Of course. Everyone is talking about Oscar after what happened to him.

Detective Murphy: What did the two of you say about him?

Pauline Jones: Mostly, Jimmy has just been worried about how his mom is handling everything. He doesn't like seeing her as upset as she was after seeing Oscar at the reunion. I promised him I would tell him if I thought she was having trouble dealing with any of it.

Detective Parker: And how is Mrs. Barton doing after hearing the news about Oscar?

Pauline Jones: She's fine. I don't think she liked Oscar very much. She called him "a sorry sack of shit." I was shocked if you want to know the truth. She doesn't usually use language like that.

Detective Parker: Would you say she hated him?

Pauline Jones: Oh, I don't know if I'd use the word "hate." She didn't like him, but you have to care about someone to hate them if you know what I mean.

Detective Parker: I'm not sure I do.

Pauline Jones: Well, if you're indifferent to someone, if you just don't care what happens to them one way or another, you're not going to put any energy into hating them.

Detective Parker: Did you hate Oscar?

Pauline Jones: No.

Detective Murphy: Have you found out any more about why Liz disliked Oscar so much?

Pauline Jones: Not really. She said a long time ago when they were just kids, she tried to be his friend, but he was cruel to her back then just like he was at the reunion. When we found out he was missing, she said it was good riddance to bad rubbish. I thought that was a bit harsh, but I guess he really made her angry, talking about her looking her age. Liz takes pride in her appearance.

Detective Parker: Do you think Liz would be capable of harming Oscar?

Pauline Jones: Of course not! You're not serious. In all the time I've known her, I've never heard her say an unkind word about anyone. Well, I guess Oscar is the exception. I know she was angry at him for being so rude, but I think it hurt her feelings more than anything.

Detective Murphy: Did she happen to mention where she was after she left the reunion?

Pauline Jones: She went home.

Detective Murphy: And then?

Pauline Jones: And then… oh, you're talking about her going out for coffee with Albert that night?

Detective Murphy: Is that something she does often?

Pauline Jones: Oh, sure. Both of us go out with Albert sometimes, but usually at a normal hour. Liz isn't much of a night owl. I guess Oscar really upset her.

Detective Parker: You and Liz are both dating Albert?

Pauline Jones: Dating? Oh my, no. It's just nice to have a friend to go out with from time to time.

Detective Murphy: Why did Liz ask Albert to meet her that night instead of you, for example?

Pauline Jones: I don't know. Maybe because Albert knew Oscar back then too.

Detective Murphy: Didn't Steve Marshall also know Oscar back in school?

Pauline Jones: Yes, but Liz wouldn't call him for something like that at that hour. He's a married man. It wouldn't be appropriate, no matter how long they've been friends.

Detective Murphy: Was there ever anything romantic between Liz and Steve over the years?

Pauline Jones: No, Steve has been in love with Ellen since they were teenagers. Liz's relationship with him has always been platonic. She would've told me if there'd ever been anything else between them.

Detective Parker: Let's go back to Albert Plum for a moment.

Pauline Jones: We're all just friends, I promise you. If you really knew Albert, you'd know that.

Detective Parker: Yes, ma'am. But since you're such good friends with Albert, did he ever tell you anything about that night he and Liz went for coffee?

Pauline Jones: Like what? They went to the Huddle House. They talked. They drank coffee. Albert ate French toast at midnight, which was very bad for his health, and don't think I didn't point that out.

Detective Parker: Did he say what they talked about?

Pauline Jones: I assume they talked about Oscar. I didn't ask.

Detective Parker: You didn't ask?

Pauline Jones: If they want me to know, they'll tell me.

Detective Parker: Do you believe them that all they did that night was talk at the Huddle House?

Pauline Jones: I told you. Liz isn't dating Albert.

Detective Parker: Yes, ma'am. I didn't mean that. I mean do you think it's possible they could've gone somewhere else together?

Pauline Jones: At that hour? Where would they go?

Detective Parker: To the Rebel Inn to see Oscar Knight?

Pauline Jones: Certainly not! Why would either of them want to see him of all people?

Detective Parker: They were both pretty upset with him that day.

Pauline Jones: Exactly. So they'd want to stay away from him, not spend even more time with him.

Detective Murphy: Where did you go that day after the reunion?

Pauline Jones: I went home, and I stayed there.

Detective Murphy: Can anyone corroborate that?

Pauline Jones: Well, no. But you can't think I would kill Oscar. Why would I?

Detective Murphy: You've had some time to think about it, to talk to your friends about it. Who do you think killed Oscar?

Pauline Jones: I can't imagine.

Detective Murphy: What about your friends? Who do they think killed Oscar?

Pauline Jones: I wouldn't know.

Detective Murphy: Is that what you and Albert were arguing about at Bouré the other night?

Pauline Jones: How did you— we weren't arguing. We were just talking about Oscar, trying to figure out what happened.

Detective Murphy: And did you come up with any theories?

Pauline Jones: No, nothing that makes any sense. I just don't see how it could've been anyone we know.

Detective Murphy: But if you came up with a theory that did make sense, you'd tell us right? Especially if you had information to back it up?

Pauline Jones: Of course I would!

Detective Murphy: See that you do. Thank you for talking to us today, Pauline. We'll let you know if we need anything else.

Pauline Jones: Goodbye, detectives, and have a nice day.

Interview ended – 1:32 p.m.

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Comments (1)

Not sure where to submit my findings I have made to date, so I thought I would put them in the day 13 section since this is where we are up to in the case. So, after reviewing 13 days of investigation I submit the following –

Firstly, in his...

Not sure where to submit my findings I have made to date, so I thought I would put them in the day 13 section since this is where we are up to in the case. So, after reviewing 13 days of investigation I submit the following –

Firstly, in his recent interview (#2), Rick Crawford claimed to have been working at the front desk Saturday night until 2300hrs. If this was true, I think the police should be asking Mr Crawford what time he saw Oscar Knight return to the hotel? Did he return alone?, and who else did Crawford see entering the hotel between 2100hrs-2300hrs?

Now, I have chosen this particular time frame because 2100hrs was the approximate time (2100-2115hrs) that Joey Beecher stated he had entered the Roadhouse before engaging in the confrontation with Knight, which sounded as though this may have started immediately upon entering. From the length of the verbal altercation described by witnesses at the Roadhouse, it did not appear as though this verbal confrontation lasted very long. Knight then apparently left. Beecher had stated in his interview that after this interaction with Knight he tried to convince Stacey Beecher to leave, when she refused and walked off to the toilet Mr Beecher left the area. Now Mr Beecher stated he departed at 2200hrs, however due to his inconsistency with times (i.e. departing his friend’s house in Addeville etc) I am reluctant to believe that he is accurate about the Roadhouse time frame in this case as well, so I believe he left between 2100-2130hrs, which is around the same time that Knight would have departed the Roadhouse. This is a red flag for me.

Secondly, the 2100hrs-2300hrs time frame is also important because Knight’s neighbour, Gavin Price, had placed Knight at Room 120 between 2200-2215hrs, based on the banging and shouting that Price had heard coming from this room. Knight’s other neighbour Gavin Myers, also claimed that he heard banging from Room 120 between 2200-2230hrs. Now both of these witnesses claimed it was due to Knight complaining about the loud music. However, I surmise that Knight had returned to his hotel room after leaving the Roadhouse. At approximately 2200-2230hrs Knight was involved in a physical and verbal altercation with someone in this room, which I believe was the cause of the banging. This is why I believe any information that Crawford could provide between the hours of 2100-2300hrs would be pertinent.
With that in mind, it is my view that the police should be looking strongly at Joey Beecher as a suspect. Reason being, Beecher’s background reveals that he has a reputation as a ‘stand-over man’, and someone with a disposition for aggression (particular when concerning his wife). Furthermore, he is known from his past employment with Mr Fontaine to be a man who gets ‘things’ done. He admitted that he was extremely angry when he entered the Roadhouse that night and saw Knight with his wife. He was so angry, in fact, that he threatened Knight. He even told the police he wanted to punch him right then and there. Beecher’s anger was so strong that he claimed that he had to head to a friend’s house later on to calm down. Additionally, it was reported to the police that Knight actually stood up to Beecher, which apparently is unheard of. This would have further exacerbated Beecher’s anger, as he was not only being embarrassed by the behaviour of his wife, he was also being shown up by a stranger in front of the other locals. Beecher even said himself that he has a reputation to uphold (though the reputation he was referring to is unclear – it is my view that he was referring to being the tough guy and not someone to mess with). Beecher also told police that if he would have been attacked every person that took an interest in his wife he would have been arrested by now. I believe this was a defence tactic by Beecher, used to cast doubt on his guilt. His statement may just as easily be true, in that he has never attacked anyone before. But why would he? Beecher had no need to do so, he would have simply used his size and jaded history to scare any of the other men into submission for thinking about messing with his wife. However, this was not the case with Knight. Knight not only challenged Beecher, but he did so in-front of everyone. I believe this would have infuriated Beecher, and as such, followed Knight back to the hotel and taught him a lesson, just as he had threatened he would. Beecher at this stage is my strongest suspect. He has a motive (jealousy, anger, reputation, humiliation), time inconsistencies (length of conversation at Roadhouse compared to departure time, departure time from friend’s house), history of being a ‘stand-over’ man through his dealings with Mr Fontaine, and lastly no strong alibi (drove around town after leaving friend’s house, no witnesses to corroborate).

I have not yet made my mind up fully regarding Myers. Though a motorcycle matching the description of Myer’s bike was seen in the area on the days that the body parts were found there is no other evidence at this stage that links Myers to Knight, other than the loud music. Unless some other evidence comes to light. Myers did make a statement to police saying that Knight would not have like to have messed with him that night (when discussing the wall banging), however I think that was all talk. I believe Myers was talking it up for the police and nothing more. The reason being is he said the banging didn’t last long (confirmed by the other neighbour) and Myers did not appear to have been too bothered by it, as his only response was to turn the music up, and then retire to bed around midnight. Though the latter is questionable.

My thoughts on Price are slightly questionable, only in the sense that he failed to disclose details of his prior interaction with Knight in 2005 (assault). But this alone produces insufficient evidence to connect him to the murder. He was in the hotel Saturday night, yet no-one can corroborate his alibi. Still not enough to go on as yet.

In regards to the other members who attended the reunion, I do not believe they were involved (at this stage of the investigation). Even though Knight upset a number of people that day, his rudeness and unexpected arrival does not appear to be sufficient enough, in my mind, to have resulted in someone killing him, let alone mutilating his body to such a degree. It is therefore my opinion that the state of Knight’s body was someone who was angry. Angry enough to show total disrespect and disregard for this human being, by chopping him into pieces.

The late-night rendezvous of Albert Plum, Elizabeth Barton and Pauline Jones is suspicious, and I do have a theory of their alibi but nothing to substantiate it at this time. The Face in the Mirror stories from the hairdressers does not stipulate the source. So, if I was to come up with a theory, I would say that in order to establish a credible water-tight alibi for themselves it is my belief that the two sources were in fact Barton and Jones themselves talking to the hairdressers about each other. In other words Barton was talking to the hair dresser about Jones and Plum, and Jones was talking to the hairdresser about Barton and Plum. Again, to fictitiously place themselves at a public venue during the time frame that Knight may have been murdered. There are no confirmed eye witnesses who have come forward and been identified, and no-one from the restaurant has actually been interviewed to corroborate the stories. So I think police should speak to staff and patrons of the Huddle House. Also, Both ladies had been on the receiving end of some very inappropriate comments from Knight and this could be motive, and Plum does have access to the types of items that could have inflicted the injuries to Knight’s body. However, until further evidence comes to light I do not believe there is enough to link them to the murder.
The placement of the remains was also significant in my eyes. It was strange for someone to leave these parts in plain view and at such a predominantly used area of the town (the park). It was as though the perpetrator wanted the parts to be found. To me it looks like someone sending a message. Perhaps a message that Beecher wanted to send in order to re-establish his credibility.

Additionally, I thought it strange that someone appeared to have gone to great lengths to not only kill and dismember Knight, but then leave themselves at risk of exposure by wrapping the parts in such a way as to preserve the evidence inside and leave it in such visible spot. I mean the body parts could have been easily disposed of inside the lake or somewhere more discreet where they wouldn’t be detected. Very odd indeed. This leans more in favour of my ‘message’ theory.

Well that is all for now. Maybe with the release of new evidence (i.e. location of the Hotel towels etc), or trace evidence from the items found at the park (i.e. duffle bag, knife, saw etc) may make me alter my current view, but at this stage the evidence points towards Joey Beecher.

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