March 1, 2004
Statement of Marvin Thomas Jones, taken by Det. Sgt. C. Martinez.
I hereby give the following statement of my own free will. I am not under compulsion or duress. Everything in this statement is true to the best of my knowledge and recollection.
I’m not a murderer. I’m really sorry that happened to that guy’s family. I feel their pain. But I’m not a murderer.
Okay, I was at this party in Claremont, at my buddy’s, my old teammate Clyde Kershaw’s. Right, right, Saturday night, February 27th. He and I were on the Clippers in 2000, before I blew out my knee. There was maybe thirty forty people there. It was Clyde’s birthday. We’re talkin’ family gathering here: friends, players, ex-players, wives, no bimbos, no coke.
I was there with my buddies Michael and Curtis. Michael Chambers. Curtis Wilmont. My wife moved out about two years after I blew my knee. Blindsided me, the bitch. Called the police, said I was beating on her, which wasn’t true, it was an accident, her face ran into my fist, heh heh, no, I’m serious, I didn’t mean to connect, she moved into me. You wouldn’t believe the names she was calling me. Anybody woulda gotten mad.
Anyway, she had the ammunition she needed. Two weeks later her goon served me with divorce papers. I didn’t have a chance.
Yeah okay, what I’m telling you is everybody was there with their wives except me and Micky and Curt, and I’d had a few beers, and we’re getting bored. So me and Micky and Curt pile into my Escalade and we’re gonna go to the Kat Man Do. You know, that strip joint, uh, gentleman’s club down in Pomona.
What you have to understand is I had a few beers, but no more than I usually have, and I was perfectly fine, I’ve driven that, you go over the bridge, the Covina Gulch Viaduct, I’ve driven it hundreds of times—the car knows the way, you know? No, seriously, I was fine, the point being I’m very familiar with this route.
The Darvon? I take that for my knee. It’s prescribed. I have chronic pain.
Sure, but we’re talking a coupla beers. A coupla beers. It’s no big deal. The Darvon doesn’t make any difference, it’s like aspirin, you know? I can handle it. I’ve handled it lotsa times.
Okay, so we’re in the Escalade and we’re on the viaduct and there’s this car fulla spics, I’m sorry, Chi-KAHN-oes, I think it was a Rambler, anyway it was some P.O.S. fulla Chi-KAHN-oes and they’re goin’ like forty, maybe thirty miles an hour, I mean creepin’ along, like they’re the only frickin’ car on the road, you know?
Okay, so I admit it. I’m telling you the whole truth here, right? We’re tailgating ‘em—yeah, I’m driving—okay I’m tailgating ‘em and flashing the high beams. And they slow down!
So I’m like, OK fine, I’m cool. So I get into the left lane, I’m gonna pass ‘em. So now Mick and Curt roll down the windows and they’re yellin’ at the spi—people of Hispanic persuasion, and I guess I’m yelling a little too, you know, just havin’ fun.
Yeah, just having fun! We’re not talkin’, you know, hate speech. Okay so maybe we said spic. But, c’mon, we were cool, seriously, we didn’t mean anything. So now I look ahead and there’s this car in front of me, and it’s another P.O.S. and it’s goin’, I don’t know, twenty? And it’s in the left lane!
So I’m a very good driver, and I realize I don’t have time to stop, I’ve got one choice, I’ve gotta shoot the gap. I’ve gotta shoot the gap or there’s gonna be a ack-si-dent. The point being, I’m fine, I know what I’m doing here, I’ve done it millions of times. So I’m gunning it, I’m buzzing the slowpoke and slippin’ back into the right lane. See, I’m putting as much room between me and the Rambler as possible, right? I get back into the right lane and I don’t feel anything, but you guys are telling me that’s where I clipped ‘em. That Escalade’s three tons, you know, so I didn’t know anything was happening back there until Curt told me to stop. It wouldn’t surprise me if the P.O.S. Rambler went out of control all by itself. Or if I did clip him, maybe it’s ‘cause he sped up. ‘Cause I should’ve been around him. I’ve done it hundreds of times.
Yeah, yeah, fine, so Curt says, “It’s on its side! You gotta stop!” so I stop, like a good citizen. And by the time we’re stopped, the Rambler’s like three hundred yards behind us, so we get out and start walking back and I thought everybody was out, they’re all standing around, screaming in Hispanic a mile a minute, I don’t understand a word, but they look OK, one guy had a bloody nose. How was I supposed to know there was some guy pinned under the car? There were four spi—people hanging around, that’s gotta be everybody, right? How was I supposed to know there were five people in that little P.O.S.? So they’re all screaming at us, so Micky says lets just go back to the car and wait for the police.
So we walk back to the car and I get on the car phone and call my agent, and I tell him, hey look, we’re on the viaduct, and some guy’s car is on its side. And he says he’s gonna take care of it. I know I should’ve called you guys, but I didn’t know there was somebody under the car, how would I know that? And I didn’t know the, uh, people in the Rambler didn’t have a cellular phone, and I didn’t know if I was actually involved, you know?, so I figure the best thing is to let Benny—my agent—Benjamin Rothstein, handle it. He’s a lawyer, too. He handles everything. You probably don’t know what that’s like. You have to, when you’re a celebrity.
Yeah, okay, fine, so finally the police get there, and they arrest me! They give me a breathalyzer! They give me a frickin’ breathalyzer and they tell me I flunked it, which is bullshit. They say I clipped ‘em and the guy was thrown from the car and it landed on him and he died instantly. You’d think I’d get credit for not leaving the scene of an accident! I feel real sorry for what happened to those people, but I don’t belong here. I’m not a murderer.