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Interview: Rob LaRouche, victim's roommate's boyfriend

Monday, June 7, 2004 -- 1:40 PM

The witness, Rob LaRouche, is a 21-year-old Caucasian male and a student in the University of Mississippi's business school. The interview took place at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department and was recorded on a portable tape recorder with the witness's knowledge and consent.

TA = Detective T. Armstrong
SM = Detective S. Murphy
RL = Rob LaRouche

TA: Thank you for coming in this morning, Mr. LaRouche.

RL: That's okay, Detective, but I don't know how I can help you.

SM: First, Mr. LaRouche, would you state your name and address for the record, please?

RL: Sure. I'm Robert LaRouche and I live at 144 B Elm Street.

TA: Are you a student at the university, Mr. LaRouche?

RL: Yes sir, been here almost four years. Have another semester then I'm outta here.

SM: As you probably know, we are investigating the death of Kristi Waterson. It is now a murder investigation.

RL: Yeah. That's what I heard. Michelle is pretty freaked out. She wants to stay with me instead of going back to the apartment.

SM: Michelle?

RL: Yeah, Michelle Prescott, Kristi's cousin and roommate. I know you know that. Isn't that why I'm here?

TA: Why do you think we want to talk to you, Mr. LaRouche?

RL: Michelle and I are going together. She was with me the night Kristi died. Isn't that what you want to ask about?

SM: Yes, Mr. LaRouche. Tell us about that night. When did you and Michelle get together?

RL: She came over to my apartment.

SM: What time was that?

RL: I'm not real sure. I think it was around 9:00. I don't wear a watch on the weekend and try not to clock-watch, so it could have been earlier. I don't think it was later, though.

TA: Did you stay in that evening?

RL: Not right away. As soon as she got there, we got in my car and went for a drive. I knew she wanted me to watch that dumb movie she'd picked out, and I thought I'd better do something to wake up first.

SM: Where did you go on your drive?

RL: We went out Highway 7. We'd grabbed a couple of beers and we were going out to Sardis Lake, but on the way I decided to go down one of those county roads and explore.

TA: Wasn't it a bit dark to see anything?

RL: Yeah. I guess. But I have this thing about country roads. Love to go places I've never been before. It was a nice night and I thought it would be fun just to drive around.

SM: Did you stop anywhere?

RL: Nope, just kept driving.

TA: How long did you drive around?

RL: I don't know. Maybe 40 minutes, an hour.

SM: So what time do you think it was when you got back?

RL: I don't know. We ordered a pizza right away. Maybe they have a record.

TA: Who did you order from?

RL: Dino's. Hey! They only deliver until 10:00, so obviously we were back before 10:00.

SM: Did anyone see you when you were driving around?

RL: I don't know. But my car kind of stands out, so someone might have.

TA: What kind of car do you have?

RL: I have one of the first hybrids, a 2000 Honda Insight that came out in late 1999. The kids on campus recognize it.

TA: A  hybrid, huh?  That a good car?

RL: You bet! Gets 65 miles per on the highway. Great for the environment. Can't go wrong with that, especially the way gas prices are these days.

SM: Then did you stay in the rest of the evening?

RL: Sure did. Michelle insisted I see that dumb movie.

SM: What was that?

RL: I don't know. Some boring period thing. Everyone with British accents. I kept dozing off and she kept giving me the elbow. I couldn't wait until it was over!

TA: Then did she go home?

RL: No. She stayed the night. Left in the morning. I don't know what time.

SM: Mr. LaRouche, how well did you know Kristi Waterson?

RL: I had her for a couple of classes. She was an instructor in the School of Business Administration and that's my major. And then I'd run into her once in a while at their apartment when I was with Michelle

SM: How was she as a teacher, Mr. LaRouche?

RL: I've had better.

TA: Would you elucidate please?

RL: Honestly?

SM: Yes, honestly, please.

RL: She was half-assed. Great, if you just wanted an easy grade. Lousy, if you wanted to really learn something. Gave As to people who never showed up, if she liked you -- especially the guys. I got a B. It was no secret she dated students. She was a real piece of work.

SM: Did you ever date her?

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RL: Not on your life! She had a reputation. Liked it rough. Most of the guys who took her out were desperate for a good grade. Besides, the university frowns on students and faculty dating. I'm not into breaking rules.

TA: Weren't you worried about your grade if you rejected her?

RL: She never approached me. I could have made it tough for her, if she failed me even though I completed all her assignments and passed all the tests. Michelle asked if I ever went with her. I'm not sure she believed me when I told her no, but it's the truth.

TA: But you know the names of some who dated her, don't you? Who, Mr. LaRouche?

RL: Look-- I don't want to get anyone in trouble.

SM: But you want to help us find her killer, don't you?

RL: Yeah, but I don't think this guy would--

TA: The name, Mr. LaRouche!

RL: Yeah, well, I know Hunter Nelson and she were seeing each other for a while. But that stopped several months ago.

SM: Who broke it off?

RL: I don't know for sure. It's all just talk. But I heard he broke it off. Got too rough for him.

SM: Who else?

RL: That's all. I heard there was a new one -- a student -- but never heard a name.

SM: When was the last time you saw Kristi Waterson, Mr. LaRouche?

RL: The weekend before she was-- before she died, when I picked up Michelle to go to a movie.

TA: How did she and Michelle get along?

RL: Oh, they got along okay.

SM: Just okay?

RL: Michelle didn't say too much about it, but I could tell she was bugged by Kristi's lifestyle -- like embarrassed, you know? I think Michelle was afraid people would think she was like Kristi.

SM: And is she?

RL: Not on your life! She's a good kid. And a real lady. Into artsy stuff. Works hard. Just sort of tolerated Kristi ‘cause they're cousins and lived together.

TA: Would she do something drastic to get away from Kristi's reputation?

RL: You mean you think she might have killed Kristi? No way! She hates violence. That's why she picked out the movie the other night. She knew my choice would be lots of shooting and car chases. Just not her style.

SM: Who else would want Kristi dead?

RL: I don't have a clue, Detective. I really didn't know that much about her life.

TA: Did Michelle ever mention any one who would like Kristi out of their hair?

RL: No, Kristi was not what we concentrated on when we were together, you know?

SM: As you know, Mr. LaRouche, this is an ongoing investigation. We may need to talk with you again.

RL: Sure, any time. Glad to help if I can.

TA: If you think of anything else, give us a call will you?

RL: Sure thing.

SM: Okay, thanks, Mr. LaRouche. Goodbye.

RL: Bye.

Interview ends -- 2:17 PM

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