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Interview: Follow-up with Deborah Eaton, dating Hunter Nelson

Saturday, June 19, 2004 -- 1:40 PM

The witness, who is dating Hunter Nelson, was interviewed at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department. The interview was conducted by Detectives Armstrong and Murphy and was recorded on a portable tape recorder with the witness' knowledge and consent.

TA = Detective T. Armstrong
SM = Detective S. Murphy
DE = Deborah Eaton

TA: Good afternoon, Ms. Eaton. How are you today?

DE: Okay, I guess. Just why am I here again? You've harassed Hunter, now you're starting on me.

SM: We aren't harassing anyone, Ms. Eaton. We're just following the evidence and the statements, but first please state your name and address for the record.

DE: You know perfectly well who I am and where I live!

TA: Take it easy, Miss Eaton. The sooner you cooperate, the sooner you can get out of here.

DE: Deborah Eaton, Guess Hall on Campus.

SM: Thank you, Ms. Eaton -- may I call you Debby?

DE: Sure, everybody else does. Why not you?

SM: Now as you know, Debby, our investigation is ongoing. However, we haven't been able to eliminate you as a suspect. Tell me why it couldn't have been you who killed Kristi Waterson?

DE: Because it wasn't me! You can't have anything that shows it could have been me!

TA: Tell us again where you were the night Kristi Waterson was killed.

DE: Hunter and I were at his place all evening -- and night -- the night Kristi was killed. Why do I have to keep telling you that?

TA: You're lying, Debby. We know it and you know it.

DE: I am not! How can you--

SM: Debby, we have found out some things that show Hunter was not there all evening, as you said.

DE: That's not true!

TA: Murphy, let's just arrest her and be done with this.

DE: You can't arrest me! I haven't done anything!

SM: Calm down. Debby, we know Hunter wasn't there, okay? What we want to know is how much you were involved, if maybe Hunter forced you to do or say something you didn't want to do or say.

DE: Like what?

TA: Like help him with what he did to Kristi Waterson

DE: You're full of it. You can't prove something that isn't true. I had nothing to do with Kristi's death. I was at Hunter's all evening. I never left that apartment from 5:00 p.m. until the next morning.

TA: But Hunter did leave, didn't he?

DE: How many times do I have to tell you he was with me at his apartment the whole evening and night?

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TA: Let's just book her.

SM: I'm afraid we have witnesses who saw him out that evening, Debby. You'd better tell us what really happened. If you had nothing to do with the murder, then you have nothing to fear by telling the truth.

DE: I am--

TA: Do you know what being an accessory to murder can get you, Ms. Eaton?

DE: Hunter had nothing to do with it. I know Hunter. He never could have done that.

SM: But you know he wasn't with you all evening. Wouldn't you rather tell us what really happened than be charged as an accessory to murder?

DE: Accessory to-- but I had nothing to do with a murder. I really was at his place all evening. I never went out.

SM: But Hunter went out, didn't he? We already know he did. We're only asking you to as a matter of procedure.

DE: I don't want to get into trouble--

TA: You're in trouble already.

SM: Talk to us and we may be able to help you out of it.

DE: Yes, he went out for some pot for us -- but he wasn't gone very long. I was afraid to tell you ‘cause I didn't want to get in trouble about the marijuana, but I don't know anything about the murder. You have to believe me!

SM: Where did Hunter say he went to buy the marijuana, Debby?

DE: I don't know! Honestly. I didn't ask and he didn't tell me.

TA: What did he say when he left?

DE: That he was going to go score something for both of us.

SM: And how did he seem when he left? What was his mood?

DE: Seem? He was okay. There wasn't anything wrong with him.

TA: Did you go with him?

DE: No, I waited at the apartment. He said there was no need for us both to go. I figured he didn't want me to know who he was doing business with.

SM: What time did he leave, Debby?

DE: I don't know exactly. It was sometime after we had finished the movie.

TA: How long was he gone?

DE: Not very long at all. Not even an hour.

TA: What did he have on?

DE: Like I told you before, a blue shirt and khakis. And his silly ball cap. And his tennis shoes.

SM: What else did he take with him?

DE: His wallet, I guess. He must have.

TA: And what color was the bag?

DE: What bag?

SM: Did Hunter take his gym bag or duffle bag with him”

DE: No. At least, I didn't see him take it.

TA: But you saw him go out the door?

DE: Yes.

SM: Did he have the bag then?

DE: No. He didn't carry a bag out.

TA: You said that he picked you up that night, correct?

DE: Yes, just before 5:00.

SM: And did he have a bag then?

DE: I didn't see any bag in his car.

SM: How did he act when he returned? Did he say or do anything out of the ordinary?

DE: Just like he always did: calm, cool and collected.

TA: So he got back and took the pot out of his bag and then what?

DE: No, he got back and took the baggie of pot out of his pocket -- then we got high. Then we got the munchies, and after we ate we went to bed. I just know he couldn't have been mixed up in this in any way!

SM: Has Hunter purchased drugs from this source before?

DE: I don't know. He doesn't tell me where he gets it.

SM: But you two have gotten high together before?

DE: Yes.

TA: Did you and Hunter ever have sex in the front seat of his car?

DE: What? Not that it is any of your business, but no.

SM: Okay, Debby that's all we need from you for today. But we may be talking to you again.

DE: I can go?

TA: For now.

Interview ends -- 2:13 PM

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