Interview with Gloria Cruz

Date:May 16, 1996

Today's date is 5/16/96. The time is now 11:20 a.m. This is going to interview with Gloria Cruz concerning the Lisa McPherson investigation. Present during the interview is Attorney Bob Johnson, Det. Margaret Jewett, myself (Det. Ron Sudler).

Det. Sudler: Gloria, for the record, could you state your name, date of'birth, and address for me?
Cruz: Okay. Gloria Cruz. Date of birth X/72. Address X,
Det. Sudler: Okay. I understand that you were Lisa McPherson's roommate.
Cruz: That's correct.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Can you tell me a little bit about your background and your relationship with Lisa ... when you first met ... uh ... kind of a historical ... you know ... approach ... you know ... how ... how you knew her and how long you'd been together ... you know ... as roommates ... and ... you know ... if you worked with her or whatever.
Cruz: Okay. Uh ... yes ... I actually ... I moved.. I met David and Benetta first because I was going to babysit ... and umm ... more like a live-in situation.. help them out with Ashley. And..and of course Benetta and David have the company. And I met them in 91. And then I was going to college. And then I. I ... of course I started working for the company while I went through college ... and part time ... and then Lisa was working there. So I did meet Lisa then and that's basically how we met. And ...
Det. Sudler: Now ... excuse me ... the company you ... you're referring to ... would be AMC Publishing?
Cruz: That's correct.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And ... so you met Lisa through that company?
Cruz: That's correct.

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Det. Sudler: Okay. And Benetta's relationship to Lisa is ... ?
Cruz: The boss ... she ... I mean she ... she was the owner of the company and her friend.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And ... or ... and your relationship to Benetta is ... ?
Cruz: Umm ... I.more than anything else more like a foster parent situation.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Airight. Go on. I'm sorry.
Cruz: Uh ... basically that ... that's how we met. And I ... throughout college I worked part time at the company. You know ... basically after college ... after ... after school I went and did a couple things. And of course when I went to work I saw Lisa and ... and we mingled that way.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: And umm ... and then the company moved here. And then I was left in Dallas because I was finishing up my last year of college. And so then I moved here after college and then I started working full time. And umm ... then ... then of course Lisa still worked there and.and we were all friends. And I think maybe umm ... maybe even two months after I moved here, I ... even three months ... I may have moved in with Lisa. I can't remember the exact date. But I know that my. intentions were to come here, stay with my parents for a while, and then find a roommate.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And where did you live with Lisa at?
Cruz: We lived on umm ... the 901 Osceola ... in those Belleair ... I think they're called Belleair Green Condominiums.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did Lisa have any prior roommates before you moved there?.
Cruz: Umm ... well, I ... in that ... in that, apartment I don't

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think so. I ... I wouldn't know really.
Det. Sudler: Alright. Umm ... so how ... how long did you share a room ... you know ... rooming with her?
Cruz: Umm ... maybe three months.
Det. Sudler: About three months?
Cruz: About three months.
Det. Sudler: And the total time that you've known her was since 1991?
Cruz: 91 ... yeah.
Det. Sudler: 91.
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... .what we'd like to do is ... you know ... in that ... in the five period of time that you knew her.
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: Can you tell us about her overall health conditions ... you know ... both her physical health and her mental health ... any health problems that you might be aware of?
Cruz: Umm..basically, like I said, I didn't really ... I mean ... she was..she was a different age. I was.. I mean ... at that point I was a teenager. We had different groups that we associated with. But the only thing that I can remember was a back situation where she had some back problems. And mainly I think with that she ... you know ... just ... just back pain that I can remember. She had like ... you know ... atwork I.. I know she had a special little ... one if those little back cushions.
Det. Sudler: Okay..
Cruz: Umm ... that's the only thing that I can ...
Det. Sudler: Do you know how she got ... you know ... the back pain? Was there anything specific to that or any details of that?
Cruz: Uh Uh..
Det. Sudler: Okay. Do you know if she was seeing any physicians for

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Cruz: Umm ... .I know she.. I know she was seeing I thought maybe a chiropractor but I ... I don't know anything else on that.
Det. Sudler: You don't know who it was?
Cruz: No, I don't.
Det. Sudler: What about any medication that she may have been taken?
Cruz: That I know of, there weren't any medications. Umm ... I know that she ... I don't know ... there ... there was one time where she ... she had a friend.. like they ... they.. they would make like some celery juice or some juice of ... of something like carrot juice or I don't know ... .some kind of green juice. And ... and supplements ... basically vitamins ... but I don't know of any medications besides that.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did she have a local physician that she saw or anything?
Cruz: Here in Clearwater?
Det. Sudler: Yeah.
Cruz: No ... that I know of ... no. I know that she ... I don't know ... she may have gone to a couple of people. But there wasn't like one person that I was aware of.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Do you know anybody that she might have gone to for an illness..a physical ... or any ... anything like that?
Cruz: The only person that I can think of that she ... I ... Ithink.. I ... she may have called..was a chiropractor. I think her name is Susan.
Det. Sudler: Susan?
Cruz: I. I don't ... because I think at one time I tried to make an appointment for her..
Det. Sudler: Okay. But ... Cruz:. She ... she gave me the number and she just said ...

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you know ... "See if you can get me an appointment". And that was it.
Det. Sudler: Okay. So you don't know if she ... if ... if she saw any doctors here. What about from where she came from. I think it was Texas she lived in before.
Cruz: From Dallas ... yeah.
Det. Sudler: From Dallas. Did she see any doctors out there for any reason?
Cruz: I wou ... I wouldn't know.
Det. Sudler: Don't know?
Cruz: I don't know.
Det. Sudler: But you're not aware of any doctor's appointments or anything that she went to for any health problems here?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... how would you describe ... in the five years that you knew Lisa ... her overall health fitness? Did she fluctuate in weight or did she have any eating disorders or anything?
Cruz: Umm.. I know that, when I met her in ... in Dallas..she wasn't ... I mean she wasn't like fat or anything ... umm ... that I would consider. But ... and then when I moved here to ... to Clearwater ... you know ... just last year, she ... you know ... she had changed her hair.. very short. And she had slimmed and ... you know.. basically ... I mean she looked ... she looked really ... really nice. And the only thing that I can remember asking her ... you know ... "Gosh, you know ... you ... you really look good ... . lost ... lost weight". And she basically ... she had been walking at night and I don't know when else she walked.. And I think the other thing was that she may have been like ... she told me she was like on a..on a protein eating where she would eat like.,..I don't know ... just

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protein in the mornings or some ... something. But that's the only ... when she was in Dallas she was one weight. And then when I moved here she had lost weight but she had done things to lose weight.
Det. Sudler: Okay. In that weight loss time, what ... what time period are we looking at ... that weight loss? Was it over the time that you ... you were roommates ... that three month period ... or was this over a period of years?
Cruz: This was over the period of me being in Dallas and then being here.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: So I ... I wasn't here. All I know is that ... you know ... when I saw her back in Dallas when they moved ... when she moved here ... she was.
Det. Jewett: Was that within a month or ... ?
Cruz: No, it was actually.. I think I was in Dallas ... I can't remember when they moved here. But rnaybea year ... a year and a half. I think that's ... I ... I may have been a junior in college.
Det. Sudler: A substantial weight loss or ... in terms of pounds or anything did you notice ... I mean was it a lot?
Cruz: No. It ... it was ... it was more of a ... it wasn't like a lot; She wasn't thin or skinny or anything. She was like a..a shape ... a nice ... .
Det. Sudler: An improvement?
Cruz: Yeah. A nice building of muscle and ... you know.'.. so it wasn't like skinny or anything like that.
Det. Sudler: Did she have any kind of exercise regiment or any ... you know ... anything that she did ... you know ... to improve her ... her fitness?
Cruz: Yeah. We actually ... umm ... we ... we walked together at night. And urnm ... the only thing that I can think of is that we.. we did some walking and we had some

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aerobic videos. And I think she had ... she may have done some calinetics.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: Whatever it's called.
Det. Jewett: How about eating when you lived together as far as.did she eat regularly ... did she get meals.. would she ... you ... you know ... how ... what were her eating habits when you lived together?
Cruz: Umm ... basically I.. I was the one that did the grocery shopping. And in the mornings I know that she got up before me. And so I don't know what she ate, but I do know that ... you know.. I ... we had a ... I had a good supply of cereal and yogurt and eggs.' And I'd get up in the morning and ... .you know ... either I would see that she had eaten some cereal or whatever or she would bring it to the office and eat ... eat breakfast. And then at lunch of course our ... we get lunch at the office because we have a cook. And. you know ... basically we would just ... she would have lunch everyday.
Det. Jewett: Uh Huh.
Cruz: Which is a regular huge meal ... salad and meat ... so, lots of food. Umm ... as far as dinners, we didn't really have the schedule where we could sit down and have dinners together. But I do know that we..a couple of times ... you know ... I'd go get her something at a restaurant or we'd meet somewhere and ... and would eat dinner.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did she have any eating disorders know ... bulimia or'something like that? You know ... a lot of times ... you know ... those things ... you know ... can create stress know ...
Cruz: Uh Huh.

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Det. Sudler: Both physical and mental stress.
Cruz: Uh Huh.'
Det. Sudler: A lot of times ... you know ... that could be factors in the person's overall health.
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: Did she have anything like that that you're aware of?
Cruz: No. Like I said, I ... as far as anorexia, I know it wasn't that because she ... we certainly did eat. And as far as bulimia, I don't ... you know.. I..I never saw anything that would tell me that.
Det. Jewett: Was she sick a lot?
Cruz: No.
Det. Jewett: Did you ever see her not feeling well or vomiting or diarrhea or anything like that?
Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Jewett: That you're aware of?
Cruz: No ... never.
Det. Sudler: What about any type of physical activity that would cause her to bruise? Would ... did she bruise easily or did she do anything very strenuous?
Cruz: Umm ... no, she was definitely not into doing anything strenuous or any strenuous exercise. So, that I know of ... you know ... no. But I ...
Det. Jewett: Was she allergic to anything that you know of?
Cruz: No ... that I know of ... no.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Not bee stings or insect bites or anything like that?
Cruz: Oh God, I ... that I know of ... no.
Det. Sudler: What about her ... her skin condition? Did she have any, allergies ... any skin allergies or anything? Did she break out in hives or rashes or anything like that?
Cruz: No ... that I ... that I know of ... no.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Nothing that you ever saw ... you know..?

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Cruz: No ... never.
Det. Sudler: She didn't ... you know ... have any hives or ... you know.or an allergic reaction to ... you know ... a cologne or shampoo or something that made her break out?
Cruz: No. I mean.'..I know we..we had special soaps we bought for both of us that she particularly liked. But I don't think ...
Det. Jewett: Were they for skin care or ... ?
Cruz: Umm.. yeah ... we actually ... we had ... we ... I ordered all of our skin care products. And ... you know ... I. don't know why ... if ... if it was because she just liked the product or there was anything particular, but I never knew of any kind of skin or anything ... rash or anything like that.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did she travel frequently?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... so she didn't go out of the country or go any places ... you know ... where she could contract anything ... you know ... that would be not ... you know ... like the common cold or flu?
Cruz: Yeah ... no.
Det. Sudler: She didn't travel abroad recently?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: The overall mental condition of Lisa ... can you describe that?
Cruz: Yeah.. I mean.. my ... from what I saw and heard, it was like it was very ... umm ... very focused on ... you know ... the things she wanted to do and her projects.. her work. Umm ... and just good.. I mean ... just happy and ... and just really a go-getter.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... with regard to her ... her relationships in her life ... umm ... I ... I understand that she had a boyfriend at one point. Do you know anything about

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that relationship?
Cruz: The only thing I know is that I had heard his name. But at the time she had the relationship, I didn't live here.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: She ... she was here and I was in Dallas. And then when I came here, the re ... the relationship no longer existed.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Imm ... did she have any problems with that that you're aware of?
Cruz: Like I said, I ... all I know is that at one point I had talked to her on the phone ... "Yeah" ... you know ... "I'm seeing this guy". And then when I came here, it was like it wasn't any ... there anymore. So I didn't inquire or anything?
Det. Sudler: She didn't have any ... you know ... periods of depression or crying or ... seeing that she had gone through a bad breakup or anything like that?
Cruz: If she did, I wasn't here.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: Because her ... like I said, from the very beginning, her start of the relationship and the end of the relationship I wasn't here.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And while you were here, she ... was she involved with anybody?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: That I know of ... no.
Det. Sudler: Umm ... so there was nothing in her personal life that would have caused her any undue stress or. mental anguish?
Cruz: No.
Det. Jewett: Did she have any problems with anybody or anything

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that was upsetting? We're just trying to find out as much as we can ...
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Jewett: With you living together.
Cruz: Right.
Det. Jewett: And you would probably be a real good ... have more insight than a lot of people would.
Cruz: Right. Umm ... well ... I mean ... to be honest with you, I don't ... like I said, we ... we definitely ran in different groups..different age groups ... and had different schedules. And when I did see her the short periods during the day or ... or during the weekends, I ... I never detected anything or any particular problems she was having.
Det. Jewett: She seemed okay to you?
Cruz: Yeah ... yeah.
Det. Sudler: Umm ... what about work? Was she ... you know ... what did she do at work?
Cruz: Umm ... you mean what was her ... her position?
Det. Sudler: Yeah..job description.
Cruz: Yeah ... she was a ... she was a sales rep for one of , our particular areas of a company. And I know that she was definitely ,a top producer and very much loved by all her, clients.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Was she like a commission or salary type person?;
Cruz: , I don't ...
Det. Sudler: Don't know how ... ?
Cruz: I don't know how it operated.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... .were there any problems at work that she might have been under a lot of pressure ... you know ... ummm ... whether it was personal efforts to achieve ... you know ... since she was ... you know ...

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top producer ... ?
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: Or were there anythings at work that were structured to increase productivity that might have been ... you know ... more pressure to her?
Cruz: Ummm ... no ... I mean ... that I ... that I recall ... no. Basically, that ... you know ... that there was a certain production for everybody. And ... and if you were having trouble, you got with the right person and you got the help. But it ... to me, everything she did at work was more like a game ... you know ... "Okay, let's see how I can ... I'm gonna do this and that".
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: But it wasn't anything like that.
Det. Sudler: Did ... she never discussed to you that she was having problems in meeting goals know ... objectives or ... you know ... clients or anything like that?
Cruz: Uh Uh. She just ... I was actually going to be moving into the area that she was. And ... and if anything,' she was ... there was a night where'we just talked about ... you know ... her giving me advice on how I could do the things that she's done because I ... I just thought she was a stellar producer.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... So I guess it would ... it would be safe to say that she was mentally sound and physically £ it and healthy ... you know ... and she didn't really have any problems that were noteworthy to you during this period of time?
Cruz: Right.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... she was involved in an accident with her car. Are you familiar with that?
Cruz: The only thing I know about that is that ... of course when this happened, I was in ... in Orlando as well.

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And when I came back ... umm ... I know that her car wasn't there. And ... and then of course there was ... and then I ... I saw it. And then it was like she'd gotten in an accident obviously.
Det. Sudler: Umm ... do.. I guess from what I understand in talking to you before ... is the week before her accident or the week of her accident ... I'm not sure ...
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: You ... she went to a seminar. Did she go to the same seminar that you did?
Cruz: No. Actually, I was in Orlando for ... just visiting friends ...
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: And she was doing a seminar work rela ... work related.
Det. Sudler: Okay. In Orlando?
Cruz: In Orlando.
Det. Sudler: Okay. How long was that seminar?
Cruz: Umm ... I want to say that it started on a Wednesday and ended'on ... maybe a two' or three day seminar.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And do you know where that was in Orlando?
Cruz: I don't.
Det. Sudler: Okay. You know if it was ... was it a big seminar at a convention seminar or was it a small thing like a hotel or what have you?
Cruz: , No, it would've been one of ... I know as being in that area now that we definitely attend the big ... the big seminars.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: So it would've been like at a hotel with our public and stuff.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And what ... what would that be relating to the work?
Cruz: Umm ... it would ba' ... basically getting our products

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known to the marketers who could potentially use our advertising mediums.
Det. Sudler: And your products are ... ?
Cruz: We do advertising for insurance companies.
Det. Sudler: Okay ... alright. So it's like a supplier ... a vendor type thing or ... ?
Cruz: A what?
Det. Sudler: Would you meet with clients there ... potential clients or ... ?
Cruz: Umm ... actually what, it is it's a..a booth.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: And you have your products displayed, and ... and of course potential market ... potential prospects and I guess your clients are there. And'you meet them and you tell them what you have. And ... and basically.cause I ... I attended one like two weeks ago and that's what it is.
Det. Sudler: ,For insurance companies?
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm..
Det. Jewett: Where did ... where was yours held? Was that in Orlando also?
Cruz: Which one ... the one that I just went to?
Det. Jewett: The one you just went to.
Cruz: Yes.
Det. Jewett: :Could it have been the same place that she was at?
Cruz: I don't know. I ... the one that was held this time was at the ... the Palace.
Det. Sudler: The Palace Hotel? Cr¸z: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: Yeah, that's where it was.
Det. Sudler: Down by Lake Buena Vista ...

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Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Near Disney World..
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: I take it that, at those seminars, there's a lot of standing I guess. Do you man these booths ... do you sit or do you stand long periods of time?'
Cruz: You do both..
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: , I ... I pretty much ... you know ... they ... they have a full breakfast and ... and lunch when you're there. And you go get your food and ... and you sit down and eat. And where ... the way that we had it set up, we had two chairs and we'd sit when we'd want to sit. ,Det. Sudler: Okay. Did she leave the day before the seminar or when did she leave?
Cruz: She left I think it was Wednesday morning. And it must have been maybe the morning of when the seminar started. I don't really know when it started. But I know that I.. I.that morning I saw her because I I'd brought her her ... some last minute dry cleaning she needed.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... and she I guess packed for a couple days there or ... ?
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did ... did you ... did she pack her clothes or did you assist with the dry cleaning ... ?
Cruz: I. I.yeah, I assisted in packing and the dry cleaning and getting her things ready to go.
Det. Sudler: Umm ... and what type of clothing did she take with her? "
Cruz: Business.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did she take -anything ... you know ... like if she would've been involved in any.. I know you said

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she didn't do anything real physical, but did she take anything ... you know ... that looked like workout clothes or anything like that ... if she did aerobics or anything over there?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Just work related clothes?
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: Yeah. And she ... you' know ... she had some ... I mean ... I know she left in shorts and a tee shirt. And I think she may have taken another pair of shorts.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did ... is there any physical exertion or activities associated with these seminars?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. You don't have to lift big boxes of ... you know.. supplies or brochures..anything like that?
Cruz: No. We ... we have little canisters that we carry in. Of course the booth that we have rolls ... which I pulled myself.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: So ... and if anything is heavy, it would be the the prop material but it would have usually- been carried by whoever can handle it.,
Det. Sudler: Okay. So it's not something that ... you wouldn't say it would be extremely physically taxing to do this for a couple days?
Cruz: Not at all..
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... while she was over there, did she call you? Did you have any contact with her when she was in Orlando? Did you go out to dinner and meet with' each other ... anything like that?
Cruz: Well, the only ... I didn't ... she left Wednesday. I didn't leave till Friday night. So the only contact

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I had.. I didn't have any contact with her when I was in Orlando but I did have contact with her while she was there and I was here. And basically she left messages for me because I was supposed to be coordinating an activity for that weekend. I don't know.. called me the first time to make sure I was doing it and the second time to give me a phone number of somebody to contact that was gonna be able to help me do ... do that projects.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... didn'.t relate to you any problems that she was having or anything like that?
Cruz: Uh Uh. -
Det. Sudler: Okay. And that ... that was Friday night that ... or ... ? Cruz:, - No, it would've ... it would've been between Wednesday and ... and Friday.
Det. Sudler: Wednesday and Friday ... okay. Umm ... .so Friday night is when you left Orlando?
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... when did you return back from Orlando?
Cruz: I returned Sunday afternoon.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And what happened upon your return from from Orlando? Did you have any contact with her that weekend?
Cruz: , No.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: I came back know.. I just ... I came back and thought it was normal. And then there ... there was a message on the machine ... ummm ... you know ... that ... from somebody, ... that said ... you know ... "I'm sorry..I heard about what happened..I wish I'd been there to help you out". ,
Det. Sudler: You don't know who ... ?
Cruz: No. -

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Det. Sudler: A male voice or a female' voice?
Cruz: It was ... it was a male voice.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... when you got home, was, there any signs that Lisa had returned from the seminar?
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Sudler: What ... and what were they?
Cruz: Umm.. well, her ... her suitcase or her carrying thing that she had was open and a lot of things were put ,back in place. And I think the only things that hadn't been put back was like panty hose or something that were on the bed. And then her suitcase was still ... or her hanging bag was still laying on there.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Was there any indication that she was going to go anywhere ... travel anywhere or ... umm ... go any place after this ... another seminar or' anything like that?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... was she scheduled to go back to work Monday?
Cruz: Well, that I know of ... yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: Like I said, I don't really know how long the seminar was expected to last, but ... but- yeah, she was scheduled to work.
Det. Sudler: , So she hadn't ,talked to you' about any planned vacations or anything like that that she was gonna do?
Cruz: Uh Uh. - -
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... she ,hadn't packed ... I mean ... her suitcase wasn't.;.you know; with clothes to go any place?,
Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm..and you said when you returned home her car wasn't there?

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Cruz: It wasn't there.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Det. Jewett: Had she left you a note?
Cruz: , Uh Uh.
Det. Jewett: Where did you think she might have been?
Cruz: I didn't really think anything. Umm ... you know ... for all I knew, she was out with a friend or she could've been at the office ... she could've been anywhere.
Det. Jewett: Did she work on weekends?
Cruz: Umm ... around that time, if anything, we were concentrating on ... on a Christmas project. But yeah, we occasionally ...
Det. Jewett: A work related Christmas project or a fund raising ...
Cruz: Fund raising ... it's more like a fund community activity.
Det. Sudler: When ... when did you first find out that she'd been involved in an accident?
Cruz: Well, when I saw her car there.
Det. Sudler: Okay. So when you came home Sunday and got the answering machine, the male caller said that they were' sorry about what had happened?
Cruz: Right.
Det. Sudler: What did you think about that?
Cruz: Well, I didn't ... I didn't really ... like I said, I didn't really know what it was related to. And then I ... of course I ... I was a little bit worried. And then I called Benetta and ... you know ... and asked her if ... what ... if she knew ... you know ... where ... what had occurred. And basically she.. I ... I don't ,think at that point that she told me about the accident but she just said that Lisa ... you know ... had gone back 210 Ft. Harrison to take care of some stuff.

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Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: And that's all I knew.
Det. Sudler: Is that what she said "to take care of some stuff"?
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did she indicate that Lisa had had any problems?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did she relate anything that happened during the accident that was unusual? Have you heard about anything that happened during the accident?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: I.. I couldn't even tell you what occurred or anything like that.
Det. Sudler: Not the circumstances of the accident?
Cruz: No, not at all.
Det. Sudler: Umm ... did you think of ... anything unusual know ... her ... you know ... just not being around and that something came up or ... or how Benetta said it "that she had to take care of some things". Did ... did that ... did she ever do anything like that before?
Cruz: Umm ... yeah. I mean ... know.. I..there.there were times where I ... I wasn't ... may not have been at home and ... and she may have not been at home. But I didn't think anything particular of her not being home.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did Benetta elaborate on what she was going to take care of or anything like that?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Airight. Uh ... and throughout this investigation, have you heard any circumstances ... you know ... concerning Lisa ... either ... you know ... before, during, or after the accident?

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Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Ummm ... nothing relating to that night?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... when you saw her car, how ... when was that?
Cruz: Umm ... I want to say maybe the week ... that week after. And as far as the car, umm ... the ... I don't know what to call maybe the thing up front ... the carburetor ... if there's such a thing ... I don't know ... some kind of grill thing on the car.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: You know..
Det. Sudler: Can you describe it?
Cruz: Yeah, it's a little metal ... it looks like a grill.
Det. Sudler: That's ...
Cruz: You know ... that ...
Det. Sudler: That's probably it.. that's what it's called. Johnson: It's the grill.
Cruz: It's a little metal grill ... you know ... it ... it was bent.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And that's ... and that's the damage to it. the grill?
Cruz: That ... that was ... yeah, that was what I saw mainly.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm..and Benetta just told you that she'd been involved in an accident?
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Jewett: Were you expecting her to come right back?
Cruz: To come right back?
Det. Jewett: Uh Huh.
Cruz: Umm ... SIDE TWO OF TAPE - -

Page 22

Det. Jewett: You just assumed maybe that she was coming straight home or did you ask if she'd be gone or ...
Cruz: Umm ... actually no, I didn't. It was ... it was like okay ... she was taking care of some things and that was it.
Det. Sudler: Okay. We're continuing this interview on side two of the tape. Did ... Benetta said that Lisa was gonna go to 210 to take care of some things. Didn't elaborate to you what that was?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did you have any phone calls or contact with Lisa while she was staying at 210?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did Benetta tell you anything or did anybody tell you anything about Lisa's ... you know ... physical condition or health while she was there?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Did she mention any body injuries that she may have sustained in the'accident?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: So as far as Lisa was concerned, when was the last time that you heard anything about her or talked to anybody about Lisa?
Cruz: Umm ... well, the ... the night of her death.
Det. Sudler: - Okay. And how long would that have been from the accident that you ... from ... you know ... that period of time when she we,nt away?
Cruz: Umm.. well, I don't know. I think the seminar may have been the weekend of the 17th or I.. I don't know.. I ... we..I'd have to go back and see when that date was. And her death was early December ...
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... you returned to work that following Monday?

Page 23

Cruz: Yes.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Was there any talk at the office about what - happened?
Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Nobody ... you know ... speculated anything ... any rumors flying?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Were you curious about anything ... about why know ... would you say she abruptly ... she just didn't come home or ... you know ... did you discuss that with anybody?
Cruz: Umm ... no. I ... basically my viewpoint ,on it was that she was taking care of things and ... you know ... with herself ... whatever she needed to take care of ... and that was it.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... how did ybu find out about her death?
Cruz: Umm.. actually I was ... I was called umm ... by Benetta and she told me along with David and the Captain of the church.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And'who's that..the.Captain?
Cruz: Umm ... Debbie Cook.
Det. Sudler: Debbie Cook?
Cruz: , Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did they tell you what happened?
Cruz: Umrn ... no ... basically that ... just that she had died.'
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did they give, you any type of circumstances whatsoever?
Cruz: That she became sick and ... and they didn't at that - point ... you know ... didn't really know what had -been the cause of it. And that they were ... they were doing ... I don"t know ... I guess, that the doctors were doing - some analysis or whatever.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did ... so did Benetta tell you anything

Page 24

associated with ... with that ... I mean ... did she elaborate on it ... on any illness or any injury or anything that she ... you know ... had that she died of ... did she give you any details?
Cruz: Umm ... the only thing mainly ... and this was ... you know ... I don't know if anything had been confirmed but speculation was that the..the bruise she had on the back of her leg may have been like a ... I forgot what the word is ... like a blood ... bloOd clot that traveled through the body and basically blocked her pulmonary artery.
Det. Sudler: Did you see any bruises on her body?
Cruz: Yeah, I.. I saw a black bruise.
Det. Sudler: When did you see that?
Cruz: Umm..I don't know ... maybe ... maybe a month or even longer before ... before her death.
Det. Sudler: Okay. You know how she got that bruise? -
Cruz: I think I asked her once because it ... you know ... her skin was very light and it was easy to see. And I think I inquired about it to her and she may have said "I bumped on ... bumped it on the desk".
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Det. Jewett: Where was it?
Cruz: Umm ... I ... it was on her ... back of one of her legs.
Det. Jewett: You're ... where your right side is ... is that where it was or you're not sure which leg?
Cruz: I don't ... I'm not sure which one.
Det. Sudler: How big was the bruise?
Cruz: Umm ... be about that big. -
Det. Sudler: So about three inches diameter?
Cruz: Umm ... yeah ... two or two and a half ... three ...
Det. Sudler: Okay. Alright. And it was on the back ... the back - of her leg like at the bend of the knee area or was

Page 25

it farther down?
Cruz: No, it was like upper thigh of her leg.
Det. Sudler: The upper thigh?
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: And was towards the back? -
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: - And that happened a month before her death?
Cruz: It may ... it may have been that long ... it may not have been that long.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And she said she hit herself on her desk?
Cruz: On the desk.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Was she a clumsy person? Did she do that often?
Cruz: Yeah. -
Det. Sudler: Did she bruise a lot ... you know ... ? -
Cruz: Well, I did ... yeah, I saw ... I mean ... with her it - was ... it was easy to see ... you know ... because she was ... her skin. But ... I mean ... throughout the years I can say yeah, I did see maybe ... you know ... a ... a bruise or two.
Det. Sudler: Any other injuries or anything like that?
Cruz: Not that I know of.
Det. Sudler: Okay. I guess you discussed this with Benetta that they thought the'blood clot might have been from that injury?
Cruz: Umm ... well, she mentioned that, yes.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm..did you go out to her funeral?
Cruz: No, I didn't.
Det. Sudler: You didn't?
Cruz: I was here.
Det. Sudler: Do you, know if ... did ... I mean ... after bumping herself. I mean ... was this something that she would have ... you know ... limped or complained about.,..

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did she ... ?
Cruz: No. I asked her if it hurt and she said no.
Det. Sudler: So it was kinda like incidental contact I guess? You just bump yourself and go on with it.. She didn't seek any medical like she broke her leg or injured herself severely?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did anybody ... you know ... elaborate on - ... as far as her accident ... whether she had injured herself?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: That there was any physical injuries. Did ... so other than just hearing from Benetta that she was involved in an accident, that's pretty much the extent.
Cruz: Yes.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... you know how her car got back to the apartment? Don't know?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: That tape recorder's gonna take a beating it looks like. Umm ...
Det. Jewett: Did Benetta tell you she went to the hospital with Lisa?
Cruz: , Did she tell me that? No.
Det. Sudler: Would there be anybody else in ... you know..Lisa's life or relationship to her that would know about any' ... you know ... more medical history or background from her? , ,
Cruz: Well, not that I know of ... I mean ... except her mom. But I'm not really sure what kind of ... you know ... how often they talked or whatever.
Det. Sudler: Okay. But you ... I mean ... you being her roommate would probably be her ... you know ... a good friend, right?

Page 27

Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Okay. And you said Benetta was her friend too?
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: Alright. Because of the age difference, did she do more with Benetta Or ... you know ... like social activities or ... ?
Cruz: Uh.. I.. I don't know that she was like very involved in social activities either, but ... you know. I know that we like on the weekends we'd spend time maybe watching movies at home. And she maybe may have gone to movies often and spent time at the house.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Cruz: But ... I don't know.. I guess you could say that some of the things she did was with other people not my age.
Det. Jewett: Who would you say was her best friend? Who was the closest to her? Cruz:' Well, I would ... I would have to say it was ... her best friend would've been Benetta.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Well, we've covered her health and her mental health and her job and I guess her know ... pretty much. Nothing out of the ordinary with any of those. What about her relationship with the church. Did know ... did she have any problems with anybody,there?
Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Sudler: You know ... just ... I know that she was I guess involved with the ... the Winter Wonderland.
Cruz: Uh Huh. -
Det. Sudler: Did that consume a lot of her time? Was she ... you - know ... that ... was that anything that was bothering' her or ...
Cruz: Umm ...

Page 28

Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm.'..was she I guess a staff person with the church?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: She wasn't. Okay. So umm ... it ... she didn't ... did she have a particular job to do with that Winter Wonderland on the side or..or did ... was that volunteer type work or ... ?
Cruz: Umm ... actually it was ... it was all ... all of our time volunteered. And she and I were basically responsible.well, part of our ... of what the volunteering that we did was to get money raised.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... you wouldn't describe that as being unusual ... unusual or ...
Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Sudler: You know ... something that would be stressful?
Cruz: No. We would just ... you know ... contact people that we knew and ... and people in the community and just tell them about the project and see how much they could donate.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Lisa ... as far as you know, was she taking any courses at ... at the church that she was putting a lot of effort into know ... really working hard on or anything like that?
Cruz: , Umm ... not around that time that I know of.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... you know that Lisa ... I guess her family life ... you know..with her father and her brother ... they had some problems with that. Did she talk to you about that?
Cruz: Uh Uh.
Det. Sudler: Okay. She didn't elaborate on any of her past?
Cruz: No, and I ... honestly, I never knew if there was ... I don't know of any problems she's had with her family or her brother or dad.

Page 29

Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did she seek any counseling or anything like that from anybody or any ... you know ... I mean ... did ... a lot of people can'masktheir ... you know ... their feeling when they're having problems but know ... try to talk to somebody. Did she have any particular confidant that she ... you know ... had at the church or anybody that she'd go to for counseling?
Cruz: Ummm..
Det. Sudler: That's a no?
Cruz: No ... yeah, I'm sorry.
Det. Sudler: That's okay.
Cruz: No ... not that I know of ... no.
Det. Sudler: Alright. Umm ... well, family, job, physical, mental, spiritual ... nothing unusual then?
Cruz: That I know of ... no.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umrn ... how would you describe Lisa?
Cruz: Umm ... just ... you know ... somebody who's outgoing and with definite goals and ... and definitely worked hard to achieve those.
Det. Sudler: But ... but she never had any signs that she was under a lot of stress or ... or ... you know ... you know ... somebody that was gonna drive themseif into ulcers know how ...
Cruz: Right.
Det. Sudler: Conditions ... anything,like that ... was she that type of person ... you know?
Cruz: Umm ... was she ... like did she have ... was ... did she drive herself to have ulcers? ,
Det. Sudler: Yeah ... I mean ...
Cruz: Somebody like that? -
Det. Sudler: You know ... she was, I guess ... you said that she liked to ... you know ... achieve her goals and she was a hard worker and ... you know ... she did ... I guess

Page 30

obviously things with a woman that's extra work.
Cruz: Right.
Det. Sudler: Volunteer work. I mean ... did she get to a point where.she had too much on her plate that could know ... pushed her to ... you know ... have ... you know ... have some ... at least enough stress in her life to cause some adverse effects either physically or ... you know ... psychologically?
Cruz: Right. Actually ... no. I think if anything when I moved in with her I took over a lot of ummm ... some of the ... you know ... like the grocery shopping and cleaning the house and her cleaning ... and just things she didn't want to take care of. And if anything, I would ... I thought ... you know ... that definitely relieved ... relieved her of certain things she didn't like doing anyway.
Det. Sudler: Were you ... were you more like the ... the manager of the estate I guess ... doing all the shopping? Did you pay the bills and ... and ... or do like the electric bill did she write the checks for that or did you write the checks or..?
Cruz: I don't know. It was kinda ... I think we did a little bit of both. Umm ... as far as when she ... you know ... when we ... when she was there. I think it was.., it was mainly her writing it out because everything was in her name ... and me giving her the money ... and then writing out the checks. And as far as the estate ... yeah ... I mean.. I.. I kept the house clean and ... and did our grocery shopping and ... you know ... did ... did errands for her ... did our dry cleaning., But any other personal things ...
Det. Sudler: How about umm ... you know ... your relationship? Did you guys get along..,.I mean ... were you good Oscar and Felix ... you know ... odd couple roommates? You know ...

Page 31

because sometimes.. I roommate can put a lot of pressure on somebody else ... you know ... especially if they're a slob and ... you know ...
Cruz: Yeah.
Det. Sudler: And you have to do all the work. Was it anything like that?
Cruz: Uh Uh. It was like the easiest living relationship that I can imagine.
Det. Sudler: Okay. So you both equally shared with the chores and the work and all of that?
Cruz: Yeah ... I know ... she ... I ... when I cleaned it, she would keep it clean and she liked having a clean place and so did I. And ... you know..if there was anything like to communicate, we would talk about it.
Det. Sudler: Okay. So then there's nothing really unusual about Lisa's life that ... that you know of?'
Cruz: , No.
Det. Sudler: Everything was fine ... you know ... up until her death?
Cruz: Right.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... Det. Jewett?
Det. Jewett: The only thing I..I wanted to ask ... is you' considered her a pretty good friend when you lived with her?
Cruz: Yes.
Det. Jewett: And you had this strange phone call from ... or not strange ... but this phone call from this guy saying - he was sorry to hear about this and then the call from Benetta. ,
Cruz: Uh Huh.
Det. Jewett: Why didn't. you call and find out what was wrong or how she was doing periodically while she was gone?
Cruz: Why didn't I call who ... Lisa? Because basically. I just ... I.. I knew that if she had wanted me to find

Page 32

out she would have called me. And I did inquire about her and ... but I knew she ... you know ... there wasn't anything like out of the ordinary ... she was doing fine. And when somebody says fine ...
Det. Jewett: Did that happen before you were living together?
Cruz: Before we were living together?
Det. Jewett: No. That never happened in any time period before that that you were living together ...
Cruz: Right.
Det. Jewett: That she would just go to 210 and not call or..
Cruz: Right. Because I ... we.
Det. Jewett: So this was something that hadn't happened before.
Cruz: Right.
Det. Jewett: Did anyone from 210 ever call you and ask you for any information on her?
Cruz: No.
Det. Jewett: As far as like Det. Sudler has asked?
Cruz: No.
Det. Sudler: Did you ever find out who called? -
Cruz: No. -
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Det. Jewett: What happened to-all her belongings?
Cruz: To all her belongings? They were taken back with her mom to Dallas.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Did she have any belongings that ... you know ... that she took with her to 210 that you're aware of?
Cruz: Well, I'm aware that she had ... you know ... her ... some - , of her bathroom things ... her facial cleaner and ...
Det. Sudler: Was that returned to her mom? Was that brought back to your apartment? -
Cruz: Umm.. I think it ... I think what was returned ... things were returned to her mom at a different place. But everything that' was in her apartment was taken back

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by her mom.
Det. Sudler: Okay. They came here after her death I guess.
Cruz: Her mom?
Det. Sudler: Yeah.
Cruz: Yes, they came here after her death ... her mom and her.. I guess would' have been her two aunts.
Det. Sudler: How much stuff did she have? Did she have a lot of clothes and jewelry and ... ?
Cruz: Yeah. Well, she had umm ... umm.. I don't know ... she had a decent amount of clothes. Umm ... not ... you know..furnished ... a whole furnished apartment. And as far as jewelry ... no.. I don't know that she had like lots of jewelry.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... did she have any problems with bills? Like did she ... you know ... did she buy a lot of clothes.was she ... you know ... maxed out on her charge cards or anything like that ... you know?
Cruz: , No, I.. I ... not at all.
Det. Sudler: She ... know ... a type that's at the mall every day buying something? -
Cruz: She ... no ... she like ... if anything, that was more of a hassle to her.
Det. Sudler: Okay. Umm ... do you know how ... did she ever mention that she had some stuff that was stolen from her at' one time?
Cruz: Umm ... actually, I ... I don't know that she mentioned it or ... I..I know that when I was in Dallas and may have came here for a visit, umm.. I did hear of a.of a time where she ... somebody had come into her apartment and taken some things.
Det. Sudler: Uh Huh. But she ... there was all the normal furnishings that you would have. Did she have anything that ... you know ... that she had lost and had to know ...

Page 34

that she ... you know ... like the stereo or TV or anything like that?.
Cruz: Umm ... well, I know we didn't have a..a stereo ... or she - didn't have one. I had one but I ... we ... it wasn't out. And I don't know.'..I may have asked her before ... you know. It was like "God, why don't we have a stereo" cause we had all kinds of CD's and she was like "Oh, it was stolen".
Det. Sudler: Uh Huh.
Cruz: And ... you know ... she said she'd been thinking about getting ne.
Det. Sudler: Okay. I can't think of any other questions. Mr. Johnson?
Johnson: Good. No.
Det. Sudler: Okay.
Johnson: I'm gonna be in trouble. Benetta Slaughter is downstairs waiting ...
Det. Sudler: I'm gonna go ahead and conclude the interview. The time is now 1210 hours.

REPORTING: Det.. Ron Sudler/elg ID NO: 608 DATE: 5/16/96 STATUS: Active EXCEPTION TYPE: _______ DATE CLEARED:___________ ~ANCE TYPE _______ 1. Extradition Declined ~rest 2. AR of Prim. Offense, Secondary Offense. w/o Pros ~dult _____Juv _____ 3. Death of Offender , 5. Prosecution Decl :ceptional. 4. V/W Refused to Cooperate 6. Juv./No Custody Lfounded. , , REVIEWING: DATE:__________ SA INFO: ____________