Todd Maxwell interview
Sunday, January 5, 2014 - 7:45 p.m.
Todd Maxwell came to the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department with his wife to report their son and daughter, Cameron and Caitlin Maxwell, missing. Prior to the interview, Detectives Armstrong and Murphy took the report from the Maxwells, who said they hadn't seen or heard from Cameron or Caitlin since before dawn on January 3, 2014.
After getting the preliminary details, the detectives interviewed the Maxwells separately. Detective Armstrong interviewed Mr. Maxwell. The interview was recorded with the witness's knowledge and consent.
- Detective T. Armstrong
- Todd Maxwell
Detective Armstrong: Mr. Maxwell, you understand that we'd like to ask you some questions that might help us determine what happened to Cameron and Caitlin. You're free to leave any time.
Todd Maxwell: Yes, sir. Anything I can do to help. I don't mind telling you, I'm very worried.
Detective Armstrong: I understand, sir. Would you state your name and address for the record please?
Todd Maxwell: Todd Edward Maxwell. I live at 103 Pleasant Drive near Avent Park.
Detective Armstrong: Tell me again about the last time you saw Cameron and Caitlin.
Todd Maxwell: Well, we'd got up around 2:30 a.m. on Friday to get the kids off to the shuttle bus. Robin fixed a big breakfast. We ate, and Robin got Austin up about 3:00. I helped Austin load up the car while Robin said her goodbyes. She still gets emotional every time they leave, no matter how much they travel. I'd say they left the house at about 3:10 or 3:15.
Detective Armstrong: Do you recall what they were wearing?
Todd Maxwell: Let's see, Robin's better at that than I am. They both had on jeans, and Caitlin wore her skating jacket. Cameron had on his dark blue jacket. Tennis shoes. Oh, and Caitlin had her fanny pack. She likes that better than carrying a purse.
Detective Armstrong: You said your wife was emotional over the Cameron and Caitlin leaving. How did Caitlin and Cameron act that morning?
Todd Maxwell: Oh, they were excited. I know Caitlin was really looking forward to going to Boston. Cameron doesn't get as excited, but he was looking forward to the trip. They're used to Robin not wanting them to leave, so that didn't bother them, I don't think.
Detective Armstrong: They were both in a positive frame of mind then?
Todd Maxwell: Oh, yes.
Detective Armstrong: Were there any disagreements that morning?
Todd Maxwell: No, nothing like that.
Detective Armstrong: What was Austin's mood that morning?
Todd Maxwell: Well, he was groggy from just getting up, but I'd say it was fine. He grumbled a little about how we make such a fuss over Caitlin and Cameron. He doesn't think we give him as much support as we do the other two. It isn't like that, but it seems that way to Austin. That's normal for him though.
Detective Armstrong: Is he envious or resentful of their success, would you say?
Todd Maxwell: Maybe envious, but I don't think he resents them. He loves his brother and sister, even if he grumbles sometimes.
Detective Armstrong: Mr. Maxwell, have either Cameron or Caitlin ever run away or expressed any feelings to you about getting away for a bit?
Todd Maxwell: No. They've never run away. They are dedicated athletes. That disaster at Nationals last January was a blow to them, but then they've only been skating at the championship level for a few seasons. They're young. They've still got an excellent chance to make the Olympic team. I know that.
Detective Armstrong: I'd think with all the hard work, they'd want a break now and then.
Todd Maxwell: They spent some time talking about whether they should continue to train and compete or maybe cut back and focus on college instead. But they worked through that and decided to go for the Olympics. I've never heard either of them talk about just wanting to get away from it all.
Detective Armstrong: It seems like you're very involved in their career. I'm surprised you didn't go to Boston too.
Todd Maxwell: Robin and I are supposed to fly out on Wednesday, but I don't see how we can go now.
Detective Armstrong: I see. Now, I know this is a hard question, Mr. Maxwell, but would either Cameron or Caitlin consider suicide? Any signs of depression?
Todd Maxwell: No, never. I can't see that. Sure they went through a few months of major disappointment, but I wouldn't call any of it real depression. They were both up and ready to go for it. Very positive.
Detective Armstrong: Do they have any enemies? Any other skaters maybe that might want to get them out of competition?
Todd Maxwell: Not anyone I can think of. The other skaters and the coaches like and admire them. In this sport, there are often disagreements on training, and skaters switch coaches – sometimes with bad blood – but not Caitlin and Cameron. They've had great support and good people working with them.
Detective Armstrong: What about friends here in Oxford? Did they spend time with their friends while they were at home?
Todd Maxwell: Not too much, I don't think. You'll have to ask Robin about that, too. I think Cameron might have visited his friend Ryan once or twice, but I'm not sure about Caitlin.
Detective Armstrong: We're going to ask you and Mrs. Maxwell to sit down and make a list of all the people you can think of that Cameron and Caitlin might have had contact with. We'll want to talk with them, too.
Todd Maxwell: We can do that.
Detective Armstrong: Did either of them get any phone calls or emails or letters that stand out in your mind?
Todd Maxwell: No, nothing but communications about this trip to Boston and the one next month to Russia, I don't think.
Detective Armstrong: Mr. Maxwell, I'm aware of your son Austin's participation in the diversion program. How's he doing?
Todd Maxwell: I think he's doing pretty well. He has an album coming out that he's worked very hard on, and he seems to be more focused than I've seen him in a long time.
Detective Armstrong: I know this is a hard question for you, but is there any chance that Austin might have something to do with Cameron and Caitlin's disappearance?
Todd Maxwell: No. I think I see what you're asking, but no. Austin grumbles, but he's a good kid and he loves Caitlin and Cameron.
Detective Armstrong: Do you know where Austin is right now? We'd like to talk to him about anything he saw or heard when he dropped them off on Friday.
Todd Maxwell: I'm not sure, but I can give you his cell phone number. He always has his phone with him.
Detective Armstrong: That'd be good. Thanks. You can just write that down right here. Do you have any ideas at all about what might have happened to Cameron and Caitlin?
Todd Maxwell: No. I've been thinking about it for two days, and I can't think of anything that makes sense. Something must have happened to them, and I just hope we can find them fast and they'll be alive and OK.
Detective Armstrong: Thank you, Mr. Maxwell. If you think of anything at all – get any calls, remember something – call us and let us know.
Todd Maxwell: I sure will.
Interview ends: 8:12 p.m.