Transcript-Interrogation of Cooper Ludarac

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Transcript-Interrogation of Cooper Ludarac

Interrogating Officer: Sgt. Adam Dalton

Other Officials Present: Marissa Rodriguez (Child Protective Services), Dr. Frederick Keats (County Sheriff's Department Child Psychologist)

Location: County Sheriff's Office

Date: 11/12/2012

Time: 11:40 AM

Dalton: Good morning, Cooper.

Ludarac: Hello.

Dalton: Do you know who I am?

Ludarac: A policeman?

Dalton: That's right. I'm a detective. My name is Adam. It is very nice to meet you. Do you know what a detective does?

Ludarac: No.

Dalton: Well, when someone does something bad, and no one knows who did it, it is my job to figure out what happened so that bad people can be brought here to us.

Ludarac: Did I do something bad?

Dalton: Oh, no, of course not, but some bad things happened, and I think you might know a little bit about it.

Ludarac: What happened?

Dalton: Some people were hurt.

Ludarac: Are they okay?

Dalton: No, Cooper, they're not.

Ludarac: What happened to them?

Dalton: That is what I am trying to figure out. What are mommy and daddy like at home?

Ludarac: I don't know. [Shrugs]

Dalton: Do they ever hurt you?

Ludarac: No.

Dalton: Do they ever say mean things to you?

Ludarac: No.

Dalton: Do they ever hurt your sister?

Ludarac: Which one?

Dalton: Kay-any of them.

Ludarac: No.

Dalton: How many sisters do you have, Cooper?

Ludarac: Two.

Dalton: What are their names?

Ludarac: Kayla and Lucy.

Dalton: Do you remember Lucy?

Ludarac: Yeah.

Dalton: What was Lucy like?

Rodriguez: Go ahead, Cooper.

Ludarac: I don't know.

Keats: He's still very young. He may not have any clear memories of Lucy.

Ludarac: I do too.

Dalton: You do what, Cooper?

Ludarac: I remember Lucy.

Dalton: What can you tell me about her?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: You drew a picture of her in your class, didn't you?

Rodriguez: Did you draw a picture of Lucy, Cooper?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: I have it here. Did you draw this, Cooper?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: Your teacher says you drew this. Can you tell me why?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: How about these three? Did you draw these?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: How about this one? Can you tell me what is going on here in this picture?

Ludarac: That's Lucy.

Dalton: Yes, that's right. You did draw a picture of Lucy and you did a very good job of it. Who are these men here, here, here and here?

Ludarac: Those are the bad men.

Dalton: Do you know who they are?

Ludarac: No.

Dalton: Can you tell me what they are doing?

Rodriguez: Detective-

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: How do you know they are bad men?

Ludarac: That's who Lucy is mad at.

Dalton: Lucy is mad at them? How do you know?

Ludarac: They are who she came back for.

Dalton: Came back?

Ludarac: Yeah.

Dalton: Where did Lucy come back from?

Ludarac: From the ground.

Dalton: What was Lucy doing in the ground?

Ludarac: Mommy and Daddy said she had to go there. They put her in a box called a caw thin, and she went into the ground.

Dalton: She came back?

Ludarac: Yeah, mommy and daddy went and got her.

Keats: Cooper, do you know what death is?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: Is he making this up?

Rodriguez: He didn't talk about Lucy with me.

Keats: Me neither.

Dalton: When did Lucy come back, Cooper?

Ludarac: I don't know.

Dalton: Do you know how Lucy came back?

Ludarac: Mommy and daddy brought her back.

Dalton: Do you know why she came back?

Ludarac: Because she was mad. She couldn't sleep in the caw thin.

Dalton: Why not?

Ludarac: They were keeping her awake.

Dalton: Cooper, did you actually see Lucy when she came back?

Ludarac: Yes.

Dalton: You saw her after-after she went to sleep in the ground?

Ludarac: Yes.

Keats: It's fairly common for a child of Cooper's age to imagine something like that, or occasionally they'll lie simply because they don't understand what happened to the sibling.

Rodriguez: I know what he's talking about. I've seen it before too.

Ludarac: [Segment Deemed Inadmissible]

Keats: Listen very closely, Cooper. That is impossible. We know you did not see Lucy after she went into the ground.

Ludarac: [Segment Deemed Inadmissible]

Keats: Calm down, Cooper. It's okay. No one thinks you're lying.

Ludarac: [Segment Deemed Inadmissible]

Keats: I think we may have pushed him too hard for one day.

Dalton: Cooper, listen. We're all done. You did a really good job today. I know things are kind of strange right now, but Dr. Keats and Ms. Rodriguez are going to take good care of you, and since you were such a helpful little man, I brought you this.

Ludarac: Can I eat it now?

Rodriguez: It's yours. Of course you can eat it now.

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