Trisha Leffler, a Las Vegas masseuse who advertised her services on Craigslist, says she was bound with a plastic cord and robbed at a Boston hotel by Philip Markoff, the man later accused of the Craigslist killing. She talks exclusively with 48 Hours Mystery.
Read the complete transcript of the interview.
QUESTION: So, Tricia, if you could do the thing that we talked about. First, identify yourself, and what your relationship is in this case.
TRICIA LEFFLER: I am Trisha Leffler. I am the first victim robbed in the Phillip Markoff Craigslist murder case.
QUESTION: All right, so, Trisha, give me a little bit through - you live here in Las Vegas. And how did you end up in Boston, and how did you end up in a hotel room at all? How did this all come about?
LEFFLER: I went out there to work.
QUESTION: How did you end up meeting Philip Markoff? How did this -
LEFFLER: I had placed an ad on Craigslist. And he called my - I had my number on Craigslist. He called my number off of Craigslist. And asked me what, you know, what part of town I was in, what location I was in, and he'd like to come see me, and spend some time with me.
QUESTION: So, you decided to go to Boston. So, how was it that you and Philip ended up meeting?
LEFFLER: Like I said originally, I placed an ad on Craigslist. My number was on there. He ended up calling my number, and asking me basically what - where I was located at, and I gave him the location. And about 20 minutes later, he called me when he got to the Westin.
QUESTION: When you placed that ad on Craigslist, what did you say in the ad? What was it that you - what - you know?
LEFFLER: It basically went along the lines of, you know, if you'd like to come spend some time with a, you know, a blonde that you would like to -
QUESTION: So, what did you write in the ad? I mean, you obviously lived in Las Vegas. But did you say, "I'll be in Boston?" What did it say in the ad?
LEFFLER: It was just I was in Boston already, and that if you'd like to come spend some time with a sweet blonde, give me a call so we can spend some time together. That's basically the ins and outs of it.
QUESTION: The ad, obviously, if someone was on that ad, they would know what they were looking for?
QUESTION: Tell me a little bit about the assumption was already there. He knew when he got there, what was the assumption that both you knew was gonna happen that night?
LEFFLER: He was just gonna pay me for my time.
QUESTION: How did you get to the hotel? Were you - was this something that he was arranging to pay for?
LEFFLER: No, not at all.
QUESTION: Tell me a little bit about that. Like, what were the expectations from you and him, in terms of -
LEFFLER: I mean, I just - I was in the hotel room, and I just placed an ad on Craigslist. And, I mean, he called off my ad. I mean, that's - there wasn't any, anything like previously discussed or anything, from the time that he called me to the time that I met him. It was probably about a half hour, so.
QUESTION: Oh, so it was really quick?
QUESTION: So about a half-an-hour in time?
QUESTION: What was he like on the phone? What did he say to you? Was there ever talk about money?
LEFFLER: He just asked me how much it was for, you know. I have a half- hour rate, and an hour rate. He asked me how much it was for the half hour and the hour. And I told him it was $200 for the hour. He asked me, he said, "Okay, hour sounds fine." And then, about a half hour later, he called me when he got to the Westin.
QUESTION: And you basically said, "This is my room, you can come up?"
LEFFLER: No. He called me when he got to the Westin, and I met him by the elevator.
QUESTION: Do you do that for security purposes?
QUESTION: Tell me a little bit about that. I mean, you have precautions in place.
QUESTION: Tell me a little bit about that?
LEFFLER: Obviously, if I don't feel comfortable, then I'll just walk away from from the person. Yeah, I do it for security reasons. That way they don't know exactly what room number I'm in. I just tell 'em if I'm not comfortable, I just tell 'em, "No thanks."
QUESTION: You felt that he was safe?
QUESTION: Tell me a little bit about that.
LEFFLER: I mean, his appearance was just - he was tall, a good looking guy. It, I mean, I felt - when I first laid eye - eyes on him, I was comfortable. Because it was, you know, just regular. Just a regular looking guy.
QUESTION: He felt like someone that you could trust in your room that night?
LEFFLER: Not really. Not really. It's not really a trust issue. It's kind of like a - I don't know what the word. Kind of like, you know, get to know the person a little bit. Come and, you know, spend some time with me. Let's get to know each other type of stuff, you know.