Peter Haskett, interviewed by the San Francisco Police Department : Interviews with Eddie Lee, Peter Haskett - Shut Up, Little Man!
Peter Haskett, interviewed by the San Francisco Police Department — Nov. 1992
SFPD: Today’s date is 11/21/1992. The time is 1734 hours. The case number is 921795794. We are presently at 810 Capp Street [unintelligible]. Present is Inspector Dillon, Star No. 222, Inspector Loftus, Star No. 1252 and Mr. Peter Haskett. Mr. Haskett would you, pardon me, spell your full name for me please.
PETER: Peter Haskett, uh, P-E-T-E-R, middle initial’s J., last name H-A-S-K-E-T-T.
SFPD: And your birthdate Mr. Haskett.
PETER: Birthdate is 3/23/28.
SFPD: And you live at 237 Steiner number 3?
SFPD: And is there a phone number there?
PETER: My phone number is 552-6422.
SFPD: Okay. And is there any other phone number or is there a work number, pager or anything else?
SFPD: We’ve been discussing for some time here, Mr. Haskett, uh, some incidents that have happened in the last several years and in the last week, uh, involving yourself, uh, Mr. Newton, and a Mr. Huffmann. Uhm, could we go back to last Saturday, November 14, 1992. And why don’t you describe as much as you can for me what happened.
PETER: Tony was working. I received a call from my friend, Mike Gowan. He was holding a garage sale and wanted me to bring some track lighting that he had left over at my house. I took the dogs along with me. And one of the dogs got loose and then [unintelligible] a block away. He was found and taken home. When I returned home, pardon me, ahem, very early in the afternoon, I went to take a nap. I was dragged out of bed. Kicked -
SFPD: Okay. Let’s [unintelligible]. Had you gone to sleep?
SFPD: Okay. So, you’re not asleep. And you were in the bedroom of the apartment?
SFPD: Okay. What were you wearing?
PETER: Uh, I was nude.
SFPD: And you said you were dragged out of the bed.
SFPD: Who dragged you out of bed?
PETER: Tony A. Newton.
SFPD: Okay. And you’re laying in bed, you’re not asleep. At what point are you first aware that Mr. Newton was in the room?
PETER: When he dragged me from the bed and he dragged me across the floor, kicking me.
SFPD: How did he first pull you from the bed, when you say drag?
PETER: By the arms.
SFPD: By both of your arms?
SFPD: So across the floor and then you said he kicked you?
PETER: Across the floor and kicking me as he went along.
SFPD: Where did he kick you?
PETER: The chest area - ribs, the back, lower back, upper back, head and -
SFPD: What was he wearing when he kicked you:
PETER: Steel-toed work boots.
SFPD: What color are they?
PETER: They are black.
SFPD: How do you know they’re steel-toed?
PETER: He had told me they wre steel-toed and I have felt the steel-toed, uh, with my hands. I can see that they are steel-toed.
SFPD: Does he wear them all the time?
PETER: Yes. In his working [unintelligible].
SFPD: Approximately how many times did he kick you?
PETER: At that time I would say six to ten times?
SFPD: And did all of those kicks take place in the bedroom?
PETER: No, no, no, in the living room.
SFPD: Did they all take place in the living room?
PETER: Uh, as I was being dragged from bedroom to the living room, and then a final kick once I was drawn out on to the walkway outside the front of the apartment.
SFPD: So, they started in the bedroom, continue in the living room, and then to the walkway outside the apartment.
PETER: Correct. There were no witnesses to that, except for the two dogs.
SFPD: You the, you described the kicking. Did he punch you at all during that time?
SFPD: With his hands?
PETER: Yes. Punch.
SFPD: Where did he punch you?
PETER: At the head and neck and ear, right and left ear. Uh, also right eye which I don’t see too well to anyway, because I have an artificial lens [unintelligible] from last year.
SFPD: Do you have any bruising that you can show me now from the punches on your, on your face or your ears or your neck?
PETER: I don’t know if there is anymore there.
SFPD: It’d be like a cut on your right ear?
SFPD: Okay. Do you, do you recall if there was bruising before?
PETER: No, there wasn’t any bruising.
SFPD: Okay. How about your eye? Was your eye black at all?
SFPD: Okay. And the left ear?
PETER: Uh. Scrapes on the left ear also. There are bruises on my upper and lower back, my upper and lower chest. The stomach area, especially the right side and the hip were I was dragged in, there are, uh, places on my leg.
SFPD: Show me your lower left leg now. Okay.
PETER: Uh, all right.
SFPD: Yes. Okay. Your lower right leg.
PETER: There are more bruises there.
PETER: And, also on the upper leg, which I have not shown you at this time.
SFPD: That’s fine. Did Mr. Newton say anything to you as he was dragging you outside?
PETER: Yes. He told me that he was going to kill me.
SFPD: When did he say that?
SFPD: Do you recall what point he said that?
PETER: No. I don’t recall the exact moment that he said that. He has just been becoming more and more, uh, difficult to be around.
SFPD: Did he say that one time or did he say that more than once or did he say anything else to you?
PETER: As the day wore on, and -
SFPD: But you stick with that specific assault.
PETER: With that specific assault he’d said it uh approximately three to four times.
SFPD: Okay. Specifically just, "I am going to kill you."
SFPD: Did he say anything else?
PETER: That I enjoy watching you die.
SFPD: How many times did he say that?
SFPD: "I will enjoy watching you die."
SFPD: Okay. Anything else the you can recall that he said to you?
PETER: He says that was his apartment, his phone, his dogs, his television set, his apartment and he wanted me out.
SFPD: Okay. So, was the front door open when he put you outside or did he open it?
PETER: He opened it.
PETER: Then he closed it.
SFPD: After he put you out?
SFPD: And how did he put you out? Still dragging you by your arms?
PETER: I, by that time, I have no idea. I only know that I was down on the pavement of the walkway and was naked and was kicked again and the door slammed. I went to Jill Scheppes in apartment number I and called the police. They came and arrested him and that’s it to my knowledge.
SFPD: Did they give you any case numbers at that time? Any court numbers?
PETER: No case number wasn’t assigned to me until a number of days later that at San Francisco General.
SFPD: Okay. I’m gonna show you, uh, San Francisco police mug photo number 282507. Do you recognize the individual on that picture?
PETER: Yes, sir.
SFPD: And who is that?
PETER: It’s Tony Allen Newton.
SFPD: Would you sign the back of that and date it for me, please. Today’s the 21st.
PETER: Five [unintelligible].
SFPD: Uh, that’s fine. Put any time, that’s the most important is the signature. So, the police came and he was arrested. And, then what happened?
PETER: Correct. Uh, I returned home and called my friend, Michael Gowan. Then, I got a call from Tony Newton that he was coming home.
SFPD: Did he say where he was calling from?
PETER: He did not say where he was calling from.
SFPD: Okay. About how long was that after the incident that you received that call from him? Do you recall that?
PETER: Probably two or three hours but I am vague and that because my mind refuses to come back to -
SFPD: When he called you and tells you he’d coming home. Did he say anything else to you on the phone?
PETER: He tells me he was going to beat me up and kill me when he got out. I’d immediately called 9-1-1 again and talked to San Francisco police relaying that information to them. They said that they would send somebody out to intercept him. He got to the door and there’s pounding on the door. I had it locked. Fortunately, the doorbell rang at the same time and I pressed the incoming button and it was the police the second time to arrest him when he was outside the door pounding on the door.
SFPD: Okay. Again, was there any case number given to you that you know of?
SFPD: So there was no physical violence against you in this -
PETER: Not in [unintelligible]. Because I did not even see him because they intercepted him before he had a chance to break in the door.
SFPD: Okay. You said you didn’t see him. Can you tell me how you know, no doubt that you do, how you know who was at the door?
PETER: Of with his pounding and yelling.
SFPD: So you recognized his voice.
SFPD: Okay. So all of the injuries that you have shown me, your bruising, all your body marks, those all came from the incident where you were in bed nude and Mr. Newton dragged you out of the bed and assaulted you and then took you out on the sidewalk, is that correct?
PETER: No. After he was arrested for the second time, he was released again. He stopped over at Mike Gowan’s house on Noe Street and called from there saying that he was coming home.
SFPD: About how long after that phone call, the second time, was he taken away? If you recall.
PETER: Probably about two hours again, I don’t, I --
SFPD: Okay. So, he calls you and says he’s coming home and what else does he say?
PETER: He told me I had better have the door unlocked or he’ll kick it in and kill me.
SFPD: Those were his exact words? Or just pretty much?
PETER: That’s pretty much of just of what he said. I called Mike Gowan. He came over with his dog.
SFPD: Now you say you called Mike Gowan. That’s where the [unintelligible] was, right? Is that correct? Do you understand [unintelligible].
PETER: Uh, he had stopped there on his way back from wherever he’d been before.
SFPD: Didn’t he make the phone call to you, would you still have -
SFPD: the door lock? How do you know that he was at your friend’s, Gowan’s?
PETER: Mike told me he was.
SFPD: Subsequent. Later when -
SFPD: you spoke with him, he told you this. So, you called Mike Gowan, and what does Mike Gowan say.
PETER: I told him, told him, my God, he’s been arrested again. Okay, so, uh, Mike told me to bring the dogs over at his place. He came over. Pardon me, he came over with his dog and we all -
SFPD: That’s Mike.
PETER: Yes. We all went with the three dogs and returned to Michael’s house.
SFPD: Mmm, hmm.
PETER: In Noe Street
SFPD: I’m a little bit confused. We’re gonna back up a little bit. Mr. Newton calls you and says: ’Have that door unlocked. I’m coming over or I’ll kick the door down.’ Okay? Now, you call Mike Gowan before he gets there?
PETER: Here is where it gets so -
SFPD: Okay. The things that you don’t recall, just tell me, if you don’t recall. Do you recall Mr. Newton at some point being back at the house.
PETER: Yes, because Mike had come over there and there again is where Tony started kicking me again.
PETER: And Mike told him, yes.
SFPD: Tell me back again where it started. What everybody was doing when the beating started. What room were we in?
PETER: The living room
SFPD: Okay. So all three of you are in the living room?
SFPD: Do you know if it’s nighttime now?
SFPD: Do you know if it’s dark out at this point when this is happening? Do you have any recollection -
PETER: It’s still light.
SFPD: It’s still light. So all three of you are in the living room.
PETER: This is probably around three o’clock in the afternoon of. . . because I recall when I escaped, I went over to Fillmore Street. Took the bus to Geary Street, transferred and went out to the VA Hospital, and I am recorded in there somewhere around shortly after four o’clock. So -
SFPD: Okay. So you all three are sittin’ in the living room.
PETER: Not sitting.
SFPD: Where, what were you doing?
PETER: I was sitting. Mike is standing. And then Tony is kicking and I am on the ground.
SFPD: What is Mike doing?
PETER: Uh, Mike is hollering him to -
SFPD: Sitting or standing? His physical position, where is he?
PETER: Oh, he is sitting in, uh, Tony’s chair, but he gets up.
PETER: And -
SFPD: What causes -
PETER: begs and hollers at Mike, I mean Tony, to quit kicking me.
SFPD: Is there something that precipitates Mr. Newton to start being violent towards you a second time?
SFPD: Is something said just prior to the violent --?
PETER: No. Nothing.
SFPD: So, completely unprovoked.
SFPD: No reason. No argument. Nothing.
SFPD: What is, what is the first contact he has with you? What is the first, the first violent --?
PETER: You mean the second time?
SFPD: Yeah. We talk, we’re only talking about the second incident now, when Mike was present.
PETER: Mmm hmm.
SFPD: What is the very first thing that Mr. Newton does?
PETER: Pulls me out of the chair and kicks, starts kicking me and punching again.
SFPD: How did he pull you out of the chair?
PETER: Just by the shoulders.
SFPD: He started to kick, kicking you and punching you, is that what you said?
SFPD: How many times did he kick you?
PETER: I would say twelve to fifteen.
SFPD: Twelve to fifteen kicks?
SFPD: How many punches?
PETER: Probably about between fifteen and twenty.
SFPD: Is this assault worse than the other assault? Or can you compare them?
PETER: Uh, this was a more violent assault, though I didn’t get dragged across the floor. It was a quicker assault than the last, than the first one. Mkie managed to get Tony out into the kitchen for a moment. When he did, I escaped through the door. The only egress to our apartment, and I got out to the hospital again.
SFPD: You just went by yourself? You just kept going?
SFPD: You didn’t stop and wait for Mike or anything?
SFPD: Now, tell me again where you went, the buses you took.
PETER: The 22 Fillmore to Geary Street and then the 38 Geary to [inintelligible] at 43rd and Clement Street.
SFPD: And you checked into the VA Hospital.
PETER: Into the uh emergency. Uh, it was sometime between 4 and 5 PM, probably right around 4:20 or 4:30.
SFPD: Okay. During this incident, did at any point Mr. Newton use any weapons on you beside the shoes and his fist?
SFPD: And at any point, whether self-defense or otherwise, were you able to kick back or strike Mr. Newton.
PETER: Absolutely not. With his age of 46 and mine of 64, I don’t have the, uh, physical strength he has -
SFPD: At any point did you have any weapons in your hand, whether a kitchen knife or a bar, a gun, or anything --?
SFPD: Nothing that can even be construed as a weapon?
SFPD: at any point?
PETER: The closest thing that would be, could ever be construed as a weapon, close to me would be a stapler or a ballpoint pen.
SFPD: And what did you do with the stapler and ballpoint pen?
PETER: Uh, didn’t do anything with the stapler and the ballpoint pen was in the bedroom. It wasn’t available to me [laughing].
SFPD: Oh, so you didn’t have the stapler in your hand?
PETER: No, I didn’t have anything in my hand.
SFPD: Okay. You confused me with the, uh, comment about -
SFPD: the stapler. That’s okay. Okay. Do you wish to prosecute Mr. Newton for the assault that occurred last Saturday.
PETER: I am very much afraid to pros. . . yes, I do want to prosecute, because I consider him an endangerment to other people he knows as a tenant in my own building.
SFPD: At the point when he told you that he was going to kill you, he told you twice. Once while he was beating you, uh, during the first incident last Saturday, and then also, uh, two or three hours later when he called you and said he was gonna beat you and kill you when he got home. When he made those statements, did you believe that he intended to kill you?
SFPD: Okay, We -
PETER: When he started telling other people that he intended to kill me, I started taking that far more seriously than I had. And, when I saw his action the following Sunday morning, when I met him with the dogs at the park.
SFPD: Okay. When he was kicking you and said, ’I am going to kill you,’ and dragging you out nude, you did not believe that what he was saying? But, I realized that he did not kill you, but I’m saying at the time when he was kicking you and beating you, did you believe his statement? Do you -
PETER: No, I thought he would get over it. But, saying that, makes me sound as if I enjoyed being kicked and beaten down, and they certainly do not -
SFPD: No, it doesn’t sound like that at all. My question is regarding the statement to kill you. Did you -
PETER: No, I did not believe he would.
SFPD: And, when he called on the phone and said he was gonna come over and kill you, you didn’t believe it either?
PETER: No. I do not.
SFPD: So, you went to the hospital. Did you get out of the hospital that night? Were you released?
PETER: Still on Saturday night?
PETER: Uh, yes. I was never entered into the hospital, and I received a call from Mike Gowan at the hospital to come to his place and stay there, not to go back home.
SFPD: And how did you get home?
PETER: I took the bus once more. The dogs by this time were over at Mike’s.
SFPD: So, you stayed Satruday night with Mike.
SFPD: Any contact from Mr. Newton?
PETER: Not until Mon. . . Sunday morning.
SFPD: So what happened Sunday morning.
PETER: He told, called and told me to get the dogs down to Duboce Park.
SFPD: Okay. So, you get to Duboce Park and what happened?
PETER: He came across Duboce to Noe and Duboce, kicked me down again and took the dogs to the park.
SFPD: Where did he kick you?
PETER: The right side, again. About belt level.
SFPD: How many times did he kick you?
SFPD: Isn’t that one that knocked you to the ground?
PETER: Yes. I, halfway to the ground, I held onto, uh, a sign post.
SFPD: And then he took the dogs and went to the park?
PETER: He took the dogs, went to the park.
SFPD: Did he say anything to you when he kicked you?
PETER: He said then, ’I’m still gonna kill you.’
SFPD: He said that just prior to kicking you, after kicking you?
SFPD: But before he took the dogs to the park?
PETER: Yes. Incidentally, he had, uh, returned home the Saturday night after I had gone to Mike Gowan’s with the dogs and he broke down the door. There is no lock on the door at this point now.
SFPD: Okay. So, he goes to Duboce Park with the dogs and where do you go?
PETER: I went back to Mike Gowan’s
PETER: At 209 Noe.
SFPD: And what happened next?
PETER: I went out to the VA hospital again.
SFPD: When was that?
PETER: Sunday afternoon.
SFPD: Took the bus again?
PETER: And they had such an overload of patients that I talked to a psychiatric social worker, and that was about as far as I got. And, I came back home to Mike on Noe, Noe Street.
SFPD: Okay. So, now we’re Sunday night. Okay. So, now what happens? You spent Sunday night -
PETER: Spent Sunday at Mike’s on Noe Street.
SFPD: Okay. Any contact from, uh, Mr. Newton.
PETER: No contact from Mr. Newton.
SFPD: Now, Monday.
PETER: Monday there was contact with Mr. Newton.
SFPD: Is that Monday morning?
SFPD: Okay. Uh huh, what kind of contact was that?
PETER: Uh, he called Mike wondering if Mike could take care of my two dogs, because he had to help carry a bathtub upstairs for installation to a place where he was working.
SFPD: But there was no conversation with you or request for you -
PETER: Uh, to his knowledge, I was an M in the hospital.
PETER: He has told, uh, the lady on Haight Street (she pandhandles me for money); he told her that I was in the hospital. She asked today if I was alright.
SFPD: Okay. Subsequently, you returned to the hospital is that correct?
PETER: I returned what?
SFPD: At some point you returned to the hospital after Monday.
PETER: Uh, Monday, uh, Jill the one who -
PETER: lives in Apartment 1 at 237 Steiner Street was over at 209 Noe Street cleaning Mike’s home, and both she and Mike insisted on calling the ambulance service, because of how I looked and how I felt. And -
SFPD: What kind of ambulance responded.
PETER: Uh, city ambulance responded, and they had a conversation with me, and then took me to Davies Medical Center. From Davies Medical Center then I was transferred to the Psychiatric Emergency Service at San Francisco General Hospital. This time by San Francisco Ambulance.
SFPD: According to police report, you made some statements that if you had to return home you would kill yourself and that was the reason -
SFPD: for taking you to the Psych Emergency, is that correct.
PETER: Uhm, yes, I imagine so.
SFPD: Is there any other reason you could think of that could take you to the Psych Emergency?
SFPD: Okay. And we’ve apparently gotten over that to some extent now?
PETER: I still consider myself suicidal, because I am very scared. I do not want to hurt anymore physically and mentally, because I have had it.
SFPD: Have you had any further contact with Mr. Newton?
SFPD: We just, we’ve been discussing the scenes on that Saturday. You told me earlier that there’d been some violence in the past.
SFPD: Between you and Mr. Newton. Now, without going into all the details, there was a third gentleman, a Mr. Huffmann, that passed away last February?
SFPD: Had been assaulted numerous times by Mr. Newton?
SFPD: And, you told me after Mr. Huffmann passed away in February, and now only you and Mr. Newton were living at 237 Steiner no. 3, that at some point the violence started towards you.
PETER: Towards me.
SFPD: Were it had been -
PETER: Never been towards me before.
SFPD: No. Approximately how long.
PETER: It’s always been towards Mr. Huffmann.
SFPD: Yes. At approximately how long after Mr. Huffmann’s death?
PETER: Probably between two and three months.
SFPD: He passed away in February. So, March, April, May? Would that be about right?
PETER: Yeah. Probably beginning in mid-April or early May or mid-May.
SFPD: And approximately how many incidents, excluding the two incidents that occurred in November, would you estimate there wee of violence between you and Mr. Newton.
PETER: Probably anywhere from six to eight. Not always involving, not always involving physical violence.
SFPD: How many incidents of physical violence: slapping, punching, kicking, hitting with objects.
PETER: Probably four or five.
SFPD: And that was the worst injury you received from those other incidents?
PETER: The hot frying pan on my head where he forced me to then eat potatoes off the floor. Uh, I still have some scabs from the burn on my head. From the burn which I received from that. That was probably approximately two-and-a-half to three months ago. I still have, uh, my right hand healing from when I tried to rip the frying pan off my head.
PETER: Earlier this year he also kicked me in the head, and I was bleeding to the point that I had to call San Francisco Emergency, and I was taken out there, and stitches were put in to stop the bleeding of my head. I also have applied for my lawyer [unintelligible].
SFPD: Approximately what number of months ago.
PETER: I don’t know.
SFPD: Would this be closer to May or closer to the present, November.
PETER: Uh, it would be closer to, uh, say maybe June or July.
SFPD: In any time the violence with Mr. Newton, was it always initiated by Mr. Newton or is never initiated by you?
PETER: Never initiated by me.
SFPD: Were there ever any weapons involved.
SFPD: Just the frying pan. Were there ever any police reports made of any of these things that you’re aware of?
SFPD: Were there ever calls to the police where they came out to break up the violence?
SFPD: What was it that happened on Sunday that made you feel like the threat was serious? You said on Saturday, when he beat you up, he was kicking you and dragging you out of the apartment and telling you he would kill you, but you didn’t believe him. However, you said after speaking with Mike Gowan or [unintelligible] park on Sunday, all of a sudden you felt that you would actually [unintelligible].
PETER: Just a growing thought in my mind that I’ve been finally willing to accept, that finally I’ve had to accept, uh, in that he has been telling other people that he plans to kill me also.
SFPD: Did he threaten you on Sunday?
PETER: Yes, when I returned the dogs to him at Noe and Duboce.
SFPD: What did he say to you.
PETER: He said, ’I’m going to kill you.’ That’s when he kicked me to the ground.
SFPD: Did you feel that to be a sincere threat?
PETER: I can’t really say. I don’t think I had that formulated in my own mind, yet. Uh, I began to take it seriously. I still didn’t want to, uh, make a complaint to the police, but it is when I have been out at San Francisco General that I was really talking to taking it seriously, and uh, talked into making a formal complaint.
SFPD: Interview is completed at 1819 hours.