In-depth interview with Serial's Jay

Jay Wilds, the star witness in the case against Adnan Syed, talks at length to Natasha Vargas-Cooper at The Intercept:


When did (Adnan) first talk to you about hurting her?

It was at least a week before she died, when he found out she was either cheating on him or leaving him. We were in the car, we were riding, smoking. He just started opening up. It’s in the evening after school, we never hung out in the morning. Just normal conversation like, ‘I think she’s fucking around. I’m gonna kill that bitch, man.’ Nothing real pointed or anything, not like, ‘I know his name,’ or ‘I caught her.’ But I just thought he was just shooting off like everyone else shoots off when they’re mad at their girlfriend. He never said anything like, ‘Hey, what gauge gun should I use?’ or ‘How many minutes am I supposed to hold somebody under the water for?’ or, ‘Is there a statute of limitation on murder?’ I thought he was just blowing off steam and bullshitting. I thought at worst he’d throw a rock through her window or something. Normal high school ‘I’m mad at her and I’ll scratch her car’ sort of stuff.

I had never known anybody who had killed anybody else, so there’s no way I could have known.

But look, if we start speculating what he was thinking that far ahead – I don’t know. He might really have just been bullshitting at the time. I don’t know what happened, what occurred between them that day. I don’t know if she said something he couldn’t handle, and he went off the edge or if he had been seriously speculating about it. I don’t feel comfortable drawing conclusions like that. You can’t start drawing conclusions like that....

Why did you agree to help Adnan bury Hae?

Because at the time I was convinced that I would be going to jail for a long time if he turned me in for drug dealing, especially to high school kids. I was also running [drug] operations from my grandmother’s house. So that would ruin her life too. I was also around a bunch of people earlier the day [at Cathy’s], and I didn’t want them to get fucked up with homicide. So I said, ‘Look man, I’m not touching [Hae]. You’re in this on your own. I’m being manipulated into what’s being done right now.’