Edition: U.S. | Arabic | Set Pref

 

Return to Transcripts main page

ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Casey Anthony Attorney Under Fire for Entertainment Deals, Requests Change of Venue; The "Lost Tapes" on the Caylee Anthony Case; Coed Murder Trial

Aired January 19, 2009 - 19:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST (voice-over): Breaking news in the Caylee Anthony case. In a stunning turn, Casey`s attorney will now ask to move the trial`s location as the defense looks for any advantage in what`s shaping up to be the trial of the century.

And more shocking video from the lost Casey Anthony jail calls, as we ask, is all this attention a good thing? Sure, the media blitz helped in the search for Caylee, but did the focus drain resources from other cases? Tim Miller, head of EquuSearch, says it dried up all his resources. I`ll look at the pros and cons of the country`s obsession with Casey.

And why are the Anthonys still selling shirts asking to help find Caylee? Where is this money going?

Then we go to Italy`s trial of the century. American co-ed Amanda Knox on trial for killing her roommate in a bizarre sex orgy while studying in Italy. Knox giggling and flirting in court. Doesn`t seem to care a young woman is dead. I`ll analyze whether she`s enjoying this attention.

ISSUES starts now.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Breaking news off the top tonight in the Caylee Anthony murder investigation. WFTV is just now reporting bold new allegations that secret entertainment deals could be paying for Casey Anthony`s star-studded defense team.

And it`s now been exactly one month since the tiny skull and skeletal remains were officially identified as those of Caylee Anthony. And yet tonight, missing toddler T-shirts and bracelets are still for sale on Caylee Anthony`s MySpace page. Why, when the remains have already been found and identified? And where is that money going? We will get to the bottom of it.

Also tonight, reports that Casey Anthony`s attorney, Jose Baez, will seek a change of venue for his client. He says moving the trial out of Orlando might be the only way his client could get a fair trial. Should Jose Baez get his way? And in this global village, will it even make a difference?

Plus, EquuSearch founder Tim Miller says they`ve run out of resources because of the Caylee case and can no longer look for other missing children. Miller now says getting involved in this case may have been a huge mistake. I will explain.

Plus, more shocking video of Casey`s lost jailhouse conversation with her parents. You will not believe some of the things she says.

As always, we want to hear from you. Give me a call: 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297.

But first, I want to bring in my expert panel. Sharon Liko, family lawyer and criminal defense attorney, as well as Jeff Brown, criminal defense attorney. Plus, Robi Ludwig, psychotherapist, and Kathi Belich, a reporter with CNN affiliate WFTV.

Kathi, you`re the one with the breaking news. What is the very latest tonight?

KATHI BELICH, REPORTER, WFTV: Rumors have been flying for months that the defense, Jose Baez, might be courting entertainment deals to pay for his defense and that he might be somehow directing the outcome of this case based on those deals. For example, a trial might make for a more dramatic story even if that`s not in Casey`s best interests.

Now I guess it`s risen to the level where someone has actually made a complaint to prosecutors about that, and prosecutors have not decided whether they will ask for a special hearing to nail down that information.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, I`ve been reviewing the wire copy as it`s come down. There is an allegation that 200 grand is involved or has already exchanged hands. Tell us about that money.

BELICH: From what we understand, that was a licensing fee deal with ABC, a figure of 200,000 has been floated around. From what I understand, that was all it involved, was licensing fees for photographs. It`s a done deal. That`s all it involved. No interviews. That`s what information I`ve uncovered.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Once again, this is coming from Kathi Belich`s station, WFTV, in Orlando, Florida. CNN has been unable to independently confirm this, but this is a fascinating development.

Got to go right away to the attorneys. Jeff Brown and Sharon Liko. Let me start with you, Jeff. Now, apparently, the judge could actually remove Jose Baez from the case if he determines that there is any impropriety. But is this unethical or inappropriate for a defense attorney if, in fact, this is true?

And again, these are just allegations coming in as we speak, breaking news. Would it be, let`s say, hypothetically, unethical for a defense attorney to make deals with entertainment outlets?

JEFF BROWN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, we have a statute in Florida that stops you from preventing -- when there`s a crime that`s been committed and profiting from it. But we`re not at that stage yet. She hasn`t been convicted of this crime.

So let`s move to the second issue. Can he then have an -- entertainment deals with people to pay for the defense? There`s nothing wrong with that.

The third allegation here is, though, that he`s doing these deals, he`s taking this case to trial because it`s in the best interests of him and not the client. Now, that`s unethical. If that`s the case, he`s in some serious problems to lose his license.

The question, though, becomes how do we get to any of these stages? They`re allegations. The judge is not going to pry into attorney/client confidentiality regarding how much he`s being paid or where he`s being paid; Unless that money is coming in to, say, post a bond, the judge isn`t going to be able to get a stake into this argument.

So the venue in which we can get in front of a judge is very limited. But the allegations that he`s directing the defense to something that`s other than the client`s best interest, that is something a judge can get into, but that`s a quick one to fix. You put Caylee [SIC] in front of the judge. He asks the questions: "Do you want to go to trial? Is this what you want to do?" And if she says yes, the case is over.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sharon Liko, we all know in car accidents, for example, attorneys can work on a contingency basis. "Oh, I`ll handle your case. If you get a settlement, I`ll take a chunk of it." Is that allowed in criminal cases such as a murder case?

SHARON LIKO, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: No. Where is the deep pocket? Unless you`re getting paid by the entertainment industry, the victim -- or the -- doesn`t usually have any money that they`re going to give somebody as a reward. I mean, that`s just...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No, I`m talking about -- OK. I understand your distinction. Yes. Because usually, if you have a car accident, there`s somebody whose car you hit, and that person would pay the settlement, presumably, if they were at fault.

But the concept is what I`m asking. Is it -- is it unethical or against the rules to apply the contingency concept to a murder case?

LIKO: Theoretically, no.

BROWN: No, it is. It`s against the law in Florida. You can`t do that.

LIKO: Wait a second. Hold on, cowboy. Let me finish. Some -- you know, anybody can pay for somebody else`s defense. So whether or not it`s inappropriate or the motive is wrong, that`s a whole separate issue. But it is not against the law for somebody to pay for John Q. Public`s defense if they feel that that`s in their best interests, the fact that they said they want to dedicate their resource.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Jeff Brown, cowboy, now I`m going to call you cowboy. Where`s your hat, by the way?

BROWN: My hat is -- my hat and my gun and my horse are all outside. The question was whether you can do a contingency fee. And the answer is very clearly no. In Florida, you can`t do contingency fees on criminal cases. Yes, anybody can pay the fee, but you can`t do a criminal -- a contingency case -- fee in a criminal case, period.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Kathi Belich, we`ve all been wondering, how is he affording -- or Casey Anthony affording this high-profile defense team which has been called a dream team, which has also been reportedly gearing up for the trial of the 21st century, which is how this murder case is being described.

You`re not just talking about Jose Baez. You`re talking about Linda Kenney Baden, who is famous from the Phil Specter case; Dr. Scott Fairgrieve, who`s very well-known; Dr. Henry Lee, who is obviously extremely well-known from O.J. and many other cases; Dr. Kathy (ph) Wright; Dr. Lawrence Kobilinsky; the list goes on and on. Dr. Warner Spitz, who has done autopsies, including Jon-Benet Ramsey. This is an expensive team -- Kathi Belich.

BELICH: It is. I mean, and if the figures we`ve heard so far, roughly 200,000 from ABC, thousands more from NBC for supposed photographs. I don`t know how far that goes with these experts. And Baez will not talk to us about how he`s being paid or how he`s paying any of these other experts.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let me just go back to Jeff for one second. Where does the illegality come? Because let`s say I have a relative who`s been charged with murder, and I say, "You know what? I think that person is innocent. I want to pay for the defense." That`s certainly not illegal or unethical.

Where -- where do you cross the line? What`s the dividing line there?

BROWN: Yes, anybody can pay for the fee from somebody. That`s fine. Your relationship, though, with your client, that`s what`s protected on attorney-client.

I`ll tell you, I think what the answer is as to where this money is coming from, it`s not. This is all pro bono. These are all people signing up for this case because it`s the case of the century. And they know they`re going to be on television. They know they`re going to get covered. So I`m betting they`re all doing this for free and jumping on this case for that reason.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, that`s not what`s being reported tonight. But that`s -- we don`t have that independently, so we`ll have to wait and see. But it`s a big, big charge that they`ve already apparently gotten 200 grand.

BROWN: Right. No, but I wouldn`t be surprised if they`re coming on this case to do it for free for the publicity. But as for -- to answer your question, somebody can pay the free. A contingency fee, though, is where you`re basing the results on an outcome. For instance, you`re saying, "If I get you acquitted, for instance, then you`ll pay me $250,000."

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right, exactly. I certainly don`t think it...

BROWN: You can`t do any that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... the story is -- do you think the story is going to be a bigger story if she`s convicted? I mean, that would be the premise of, "Oh, if she`s convicted, he`ll get some kind of payment." I can`t imagine that. That`s -- that`s way beyond the realm of possibility for me.

BROWN: Well, think about -- think about what these experts are all getting as far as their reputation. They`re on TV nightly. They`re talking about this case. People are talking about it. If there is a trial, again, that adds to their resume. That`s worth, what, 200,000, 250,000 of free publicity?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Robi Ludwig, I want to ask you, as a psychotherapist, there is so much money talk involved here. We`re also getting reports that -- and we`ve seen it on the MySpace page. It says Caylee Anthony. They`re still selling these T-shirts that say "Missing Toddler," and apparently, that money is going to go to charity. But still, a lot of focus on dollars and cents in what should be a matter of the heart.

ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: You know, I agree. And there`s something vulgar about selling T-shirts on MySpace as a result of this horrible, heinous crime.

You know, and I think in some cases, people will do anything to get a name out there for themselves. And there`s a confusion with being famous and being good, which isn`t necessarily the case.

And I think sometimes people, especially if they`re not media savvy, just really want to get their name out there and don`t know how to handle the attention properly. And they do things like selling T-shirts, even though there`s something really, clearly, morally wrong about it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, we`re going to get to more of that. And once again, we want to say that these allegations, these stories, just coming into our newsroom. CNN cannot independently confirm them. These are published reports that are being published by affiliates down in Florida, and we`re going to take a look at them because they are out there.

All right. Stay right there. Just a reminder, Nancy Grace, up immediately following this program at 8 p.m. Eastern. She will have more on the latest bombshells in the Caylee Anthony case.

And right here on ISSUES, we will have much more ground to cover on the Caylee Anthony murder case. Do you have a question or comment? Give me a call. 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297. But first, here`s more from what some have called Casey Anthony`s lost jailhouse tape.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CINDY ANTHONY, MOTHER OF CASEY ANTHONY: I was in Lake County two days ago.

CASEY ANTHONY, CHARGED WITH MURDERING DAUGHTER: OK.

CINDY ANTHONY: Is there anything there?

CASEY ANTHONY: Mom! Jeez! I`m sorry. I love you guys. I miss you.

CINDY ANTHONY: All right, sweetheart. Here`s Dad. Hold on.

CASEY ANTHONY: No, I`m going to hang up and just walk away right now.

CINDY ANTHONY: Please, don`t.

CASEY ANTHONY: Because I`m frustrated and I`m angry, and I don`t want to be angry. This is the first time I`ve truly, truly been angry this entire time. But I`m so beyond frustrated with -- with all of this. I can`t even swallow right now. It hurts.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CASEY ANTHONY: Let me speak for a second. Dad, I let everybody talk. They`re not releasing it. Well, I hope not. I`ll keep saying whatever I have to say about police. They don`t want to -- can someone let me -- come on!

CINDY ANTHONY: Casey, hold on, sweetheart. Settle down.

CASEY ANTHONY: Nobody`s letting me speak. You want me to talk, then...

CINDY ANTHONY: All right. I`ll listen.

CASEY ANTHONY: Give me three seconds to say something.

CINDY ANTHONY: Go, sweetheart.

CASEY ANTHONY: I`m not in control over any of this, because I don`t know what the hell is going on. I don`t know what`s going on. My entire life has been taken from me. Everything has been taken from me. You don`t understand.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Casey Anthony talking to her parents from jail last August. Can you say brat? What do you think about the, quote, "lost tapes"? Give me a holler: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.

And joining my panel now, Patrick Brosnan, former NYPD homicide detective.

Thank you, Patrick, for joining us. You listen to these tapes. You wonder if you have a child that`s missing, you`re talking about, "Well, where was she last? What`s the latest? What are the investigators saying? Are there any leads? Are there any clues?"

You`re asking questions, right, about the missing child?

PATRICK BROSNAN, FORMER NYPD HOMICIDE DETECTIVE: Absolutely. Well, here`s the thing. Anytime a witness lies, the logical sequence, the deductive sequence of an investigation shifts, and it shifts in a very bad way.

So once you have a credible eyewitness or ear witness who misrepresents the facts, it leads the investigators in the wrong direction, and meanwhile, the clock is ticking. So it`s really particularly egregious in cases of missing persons.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: This in August when her child -- the remains hadn`t been found. They weren`t found until December 11. And this is the mother who says that she`s concerned about her child`s whereabouts, but there`s very little mention of details of her concern in these tapes. We`re going to get to more of it in just a moment.

Peggy in Missouri, your question or thought, ma`am.

CALLER: Yes. I`ve been watching this for some time. And I`m a social worker of 35 years, 28 years in children`s services. And my question is, why is no one addressing the fact that there`s child neglect? She was a primary caregiver. She had the ultimate care for this child. She had no knowledge where her child was. She misled everybody, so that they couldn`t even look for this child.

Why isn`t that issue really being addressed, which eventually led to the death of the child?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Kathi Belich, she did face a host of charges before she was hit with the murder charge. What were the specifics of those charges? And they did relate to child abuse, I believe, in some way, shape, or form.

BELICH: Yes. She was initially charged with child neglect. Before the remains were found, before -- actually before she was indicted for first-degree murder. But once they came to the conclusion that the child was dead, then it sort of nixed the child neglect, because she couldn`t neglect the child if the child was dead. It`s a little convoluted.

But also, the state Department of Children and Families also investigated her for child neglect. So that issue did come up, but it`s just because of intricacies of the case that it sort of went away.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, this next clip is a humdinger. The lost tape is a conversation between Casey and her parents in jail, long before Caylee`s remains were found. Listen to the very beginning and watch the very beginning of this conversation.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CASEY ANTHONY: Good morning.

GEORGE ANTHONY, CASEY`S FATHER: Good morning, beautiful. I love you.

CASEY ANTHONY: Hi. I love you, too. Why is she crying already?

G. ANTHONY: Because we haven`t seen you.

CASEY ANTHONY: I know.

G. ANTHONY: So how is your day starting out so far?

CASEY ANTHONY: I was asleep. So it`s all right. I woke up at 5, stayed up for about an hour and then went back to bed for a little bit. So my eyes are red. I`m tired.

G. ANTHONY: So what else is going on with you?

CASEY ANTHONY: Nothing. The usual. I`m just, I guess, waiting around. Those are new shirts. I like those.

G. ANTHONY: Yes. Those are -- the Never Lose Hope Foundation did those for us. So...

CASEY ANTHONY: I like those a lot. Those are really nice.

G. ANTHONY: Yes, those are really sweet. Really, really sweet. Can you read what they say?

CASEY ANTHONY: "Fly home, baby." And I don`t see the bottom.

G. ANTHONY: It says "Fly home, baby. We miss you."

CASEY ANTHONY: Those are nice shirts. I like those.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Psychotherapist Robi Ludwig, her child is missing. She`s talking about the shirts. And when her mom starts weeping at hello, she`s got a big smile on her face.

LUDWIG: Uh-huh.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What`s -- what`s going on in her mind?

LUDWIG: She`s just so grossly egocentric. You know, everything is about her. It doesn`t seem like she really understands the severity of this situation. I mean, if your father or mother were to ask you if -- when your child is missing, "so what`s new?"

One would think a mother would say, you know, "I just -- I had a nightmare about my daughter." Something that would reflect some type of pain connected to a child being missing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, just the fact that her mom is weeping, how can you smile in reaction to that? Wouldn`t you want to comfort your mom? If my mom was crying, I would try to comfort her and say, "Oh, don`t feel bad" or "I`m so sorry you`re crying." I mean, there`s no empathy there.

LUDWIG: No. One of two things...

LIKO: Not if you`re a lunatic. I mean, this case should be called Lunatics R Us.

LUDWIG: One of two things could be going on, though.

(CROSSTALK)

LIKO: It`s completely absurd, and it`s completely unrealistic.

LUDWIG: I think one of two things could be going on, though. You know, for some people it`s uncomfortable to deal with extreme emotionality, so they laugh when they are in the presence of it. But of course, given this case, we have to assume it`s some kind of sociopathy. And what we know about sociopaths is that they can`t feel for other people. They can only feel for themselves.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Let`s go to Jean in Missouri. Your question or comment, ma`am?

CALLER: Yes, I`m trying to find out if the father, he`s deceased -- or if the parents -- the grandparents of the father can sue for this money that the entertainment industry is paying for.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Who? I`m trying to -- OK. I kind of missed -- Kathi Belich, let`s talk a little bit about this entertainment money. What other details do you have there that you`re reporting that we haven`t heard yet?

BELICH: Just, really, that there was a complaint that was made to prosecutors by someone who was concerned about the idea that Jose Baez, the defense attorney, might be driven by possible entertainment deals behind the scenes and that he might be directing the case based on those deals.

As I said earlier, if there were a trial, it would make for a more dramatic story. He might be making decisions based on that. That`s what the allegations.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Stay right there, everyone. Taking more calls: 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297. Do you think Casey will get a fair trial if her attorney gets the judge to move this circus to Jacksonville?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CASEY ANTHONY: How are you feeling?

CINDY ANTHONY: Not -- we`re not doing well, case. None of us. Lee`s been sick. Dad`s -- Dad`s blown up at the media.

CASEY ANTHONY: Yes, I heard.

CINDY ANTHONY: Well, someone just said that Caylee was dead this morning, that she drowned in the pool. That`s the newest story out there.

CASEY ANTHONY: Surprise, surprise.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Those poor parents of Casey Anthony. Got to feel for them, dealing with her.

We are back discussing all the latest twists in the Caylee Anthony murder investigation.

Penny in Utah, question or comment, ma`am?

CALLER: Yes, thank you for taking my call. I`ve been wondering about this since this whole thing started. When they take people into jail, don`t they make them have a drug test? Was she on methamphetamines or anything?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Kathi Belich, there were reports that involved drugs during the early reporting on this story in terms of her partying. What do we know?

BELICH: Well, she -- when she was out on bond, she was tested periodically when she was out, and her tests were always negative. There were some e-mails, I believe, and some conversations she had with friends about drugs, but there was never any evidence in this -- since her daughter`s disappearance that there were any drugs in her system.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: There were -- it was more friends talking about what they had seen her do, but not confirmed. You`re absolutely right.

Here`s a clip of Casey talking to her mom, Cindy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CASEY ANTHONY: I can`t do anything from here. I don`t have access to the Internet. I can`t make phone calls. I can`t go anywhere.

(CROSSTALK)

CASEY ANTHONY: I`ve already told you, Mom. I`ve told you everything.

CINDY ANTHONY: I`ve thought about everything that you told me over the last month.

CASEY ANTHONY: You`ve thought about stuff and you`ve done what you can. I`m sorry. That`s all I can do from the only knowledge that I have.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, Jeff Brown, what strikes me about this is that she`s making this argument, "I don`t have the Internet." Everybody knows that the information we`re seeking isn`t contained on the Internet. Otherwise we`d all have it. It`s contained in her head.

And yet her parents don`t seem to challenge her faulty logic and say, "Look, honey, it has nothing to do with the interview -- Internet. It`s something that`s going on in your mind that you have to tell us." They`re not challenging her.

BROWN: Yes. Well, doesn`t that tell you that they`re the people that know her the best? I mean, to me, there`s a lot of things that don`t add up. None of us know what exactly happened, but everyone wants to convict her already.

And I look at this case, and I say the parents know her best. They don`t believe that at this point. I`m a little questioning about the meter reader and what all happened there.

But there`s a lot of things we don`t know. Whether that was an accident and that`s how this child died or whether maybe she did an illegal adoption and someone took the child and she`s protecting him. Everybody is all ready to convict her and say child neglect and she killed this child. There aren`t a lot -- all those answers aren`t there yet. And I`m one of these people that wants to wait.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: One of the reasons, Sharon Liko, that people are saying all these things is that she waited more than a month to report her child missing and then only when her mother confronted her. And her mother was actually the one who called 911.

LIKO: Yes. That`s true. I mean, any mother who really was concerned that their kid was missing would have been on the phone with the police within 30 minutes.

If your dog goes missing, you`ve got signs posted around the neighborhood in the next two hours. And the kid is gone for 30 days, and she just sort of casualty admits that to her mother?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right. And we`re going to talk about the change of venue issue in a second. More on the Caylee Anthony case in just a bit.

Plus, a sex game in Italy ends in murder. And now American co-ed Amanda Knox is on trial for killing her roommate. I`m going to tell you why she might actually be enjoying the attention. Call 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297 to sound off on this twisted case.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN ANCHOR: Bombshell developments in the Caylee Anthony murder case. The defense wants to move the trial to another city as they look for any advantage they can get. The case is shaping up to be the trial of the century, but I`ll ask if all this attention is a good thing.

Plus, a bizarre sex game leads to murder in Italy. American coed Amanda Knox on trial for killing her roommate while studying in Italy. I`ll be taking your calls on this very disturbing case.

Twenty-one-year-old angel-faced coed Amanda Knox, on trial for her life in a picturesque Italian town. And if her behavior in court is any indication at all, you`d never know she has been accused of ritualistic murder with all sorts of sexual overtones.

I`m going to take your case -- your calls in this bizarre case in just minutes. 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297.

But first, we are back discussing this lost tape and plenty of other developments in the Caylee Anthony case. I`m joined by my fantastic panels: Patrick Brosnan, former NYPD homicide detective; and Sharon Liko, family lawyer and criminal defense attorney; and Jeff Brown, a criminal defense attorney; as well as Robi Ludwig, psychotherapist; and Kathi Belich, a reporter with the CNN affiliate WFTV who has been on this case from the very start.

Phone lines lighting up.

Missy, in Florida, question or comment, ma`am?

MISSY IN FLORIDA: Hi, Jane. I have a question. Have they tested the body for chloroform? And if they have, when will we know the results?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Kathi Belich, you want to take it?

KATHI BELICH, WFTV REPORTER: Yes, I believe that toxicology tests are being done. That`s usually the last thing to come back on an autopsy. That`s actually what the defense is waiting for. That`s what`s holding up the memorial service for Caylee.

The defense wants those toxicology reports back so if they want to do any testing of the remains, they can do that before any memorial service and possible cremation is done. So yes, that would be one of the tests.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s absolutely amazing that this was identified, the remains, as being of Caylee`s December 19th. It`s now January 19th and still no funeral or memorial for this child, absolutely astounding.

Now, we have more of the lost tapes. This conversation really shows just how frustrated Casey is. Listen very, very carefully to her lash-out at her mom.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CASEY ANTHONY, MOTHER OF CAYLEE ANTHONY: Mom, I know what I`m honestly up against. Do you guys understand what I`m honestly up against? And with keeping me here, you`re not helping me help myself.

CINDY ANTHONY, MOTHER OF CASEY ANTHONY: I`m sorry to say that.

CASEY ANTHONY: Huh?

CINDY ANTHONY: We don`t have the means to get you out anyway, sweetheart. We don`t.

CASEY ANTHONY: I understand that, but the opportunity was there and it wasn`t taken advantage of.

CINDY ANTHONY: We didn`t have an opportunity. I don`t know where you`re hearing that.

CASEY ANTHONY: Just give dad the phone, please. I`m sorry, I don`t want to get frustrated. Just give dad the phone.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Whoa. Ok first, Kathi Belich, what opportunity? Is she just making this up, too?

BELICH: Well, California bounty hunter Leonard Padilla said that she knew at that point that he was in the process of getting her bonded out but he didn`t understand why she was acting like that because she knew that she was about to get out.

So could that be what she`s referring to? Maybe the family turned it down at first. I don`t know.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: More theatrics. Robi Ludwig, the way she just turns on a dime with her own parents, it`s just absolutely astounding. She`s got all the power.

ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTERAPIST: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And they have no power in this relationship.

LUDWIG: And think about how odd that must be. I mean, as a child, you really need to think that your parents are in charge. And for some reason, this woman does not feel that way about her parents.

And I think of note, the constant theme is she is always the victim. She has no freedom. They didn`t get her out. That they are failing her and that`s probably how she views people in her life. They`re either there to help her or they`re failing her. And I would bet more often than not, she feels people are failing her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, Jeff Brown, these videotapes which have gotten a lot of play, could be one reason why Jose Baez is saying there has to be a change of venue. We cannot get a fair trial in Orlando. There are some reports that he`s suggesting moving to Jacksonville which happens to be 140 miles away or Miami, 230 miles away.

But does that really make a difference when these videos are playing nationally? In fact, even globally.

JEFF BROWN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes, that`s going to be tough. I mean, that the tease to one of these segments was that the defense was looking for an advantage. And I would say no, the defense was just looking for a fair trial.

But all of these videos are not helping. I mean, all of the discussion about this case is, I think, making people form an opinion. And most of the opinions are that she already did it.

The last segment, with Robi, I disagree with Robi. I think she is a victim. She is accused of a murder that we don`t know whether she committed it so to me she is a victim.

But to get a fair trial that`s going to be extremely difficult, but keep in mind though --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: She`s allegedly accused. Allegedly.

BROWN: Right. She is allegedly accused. So she didn`t do it. It hasn`t been proven, yet.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but come on, Jeff Brown. I mean, look at her behavior. At this point back in August, her daughter is officially missing and Zanny the nanny, who police say does not exist, this person does not exist, has taken the child.

And later, we -- we find after the child is finally reported missing and there`s all this investigation that her car has the smell of death, that cadaver dogs hit on it, that there`s decomposition in the trunk, I mean, there`s a lot of circumstantial and forensic evidence that is facing this woman.

BROWN: Sure. But there`s a lot of possibilities that could have happened. This could have been an accidental death that she just didn`t handle properly. It could be that she gave the child in an illegal adoption and now she knows that she can`t report it and therefore she doesn`t do anything about it.

The problem is though, that you`re asking about getting a fair trail, well, it`s almost impossible. But keep in mind that in Florida, the question isn`t whether other people have heard of the case. The question is whether they`ve already formed an opinion about the case.

And I guarantee you there`re going to be a lot of people that have had formed opinions, but they`re going come in and say, oh no, I can keep an open mind. Those are the tough jurors.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sharon Liko, this is going to be very complicated if they get a change of venue. I`ve seen this when I`ve covered trials. It`s not like the sheriff just hops down to the courthouse anymore. They`ve got to go to a different city. They`ve got to move all their case works to another city. That gets expensive. It drags the trial out, does it not?

SHARON LIKO, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Oh, yes, sure it gets expensive. But let me tell you, the pre-trial publicity doesn`t win or lose cases. There`s a study that`s been done recently out of Oregon where it showed that the pre-trial publicity really had no statistical difference in whether somebody was convicted or not.

The golden rule of the justice system is he who has the most money can buy the fairest trial. So you want a Johnny Cochran defense? You`ve got to pay for a Johnny Cochran defense. And economics rule the day. They always have and they always will.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Kathi Belich, let`s talk about Tim Miller. Tim Miller, now complaining to "Orlando Sentinel" that this could have been the biggest mistake he ever made with EquiSearch, his volunteer search team, searching for Caylee, because he says he spent a hundred grand now they don`t have money to do other searches for other missing children. And he seems very betrayed, saying that he got involved because he believed Casey but then once he actually met Casey, she was smiling and running around like she had just won a cheerleading contest is what he says.

What do you know about how this has damaged EquiSearch?

BELICH: Well, as you said, it cost him a lot of money and now the demand is greater because the word has gotten out about him. So now he has less money to do more work. And he feels like the family really turned their back on him.

I had heard that this is the only family that EquiSearch has ever worked with that did not provide clothing of the missing child to help them find that child.

And I have heard other stories about the surprising dynamics in that family within that house. Not just about Casey, but also about her mother. And I really feel that they believed they were trying to help and that the family truly wanted their help. And as soon as the family did not want a search for -- for a child that was not alive, they just turned their backs on Tim Miller. And I think he`s still bitter about it, obviously.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Robi Ludwig, a lot of people who were initially aligned with the family have gotten bitter. It`s not just Tim Miller, but an attorney who used to represent the Anthony family. He`s now sort of switched sides. And I believe he`s representing Tim Miller from EquiSearch.

So what does it say when people become sort of soured repeatedly?

LUDWIG: Well, I mean, it -- obviously something is going on where the relationship gets disturbed. And there`s a feeling of being betrayed. And what the specifics of those dynamics are, it`s really hard to say because I don`t know what happened between these people.

But it sounds like, you know, this family is very loving and ingratiating when they feel that their goals are being met.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, but I must say as we wrap up who knows how we would behave if we were in the same situation. I certainly can`t make a judgment on somebody else given this horror story.

Patrick, Sharon, Jeff, Robi, Kathi, thank you so much for your fantastic insights. And don`t forget: for the very latest on the Caylee Anthony case, tune in to Nancy Grace immediately following this program at 8:00 p.m.

Coming up: American coed Amanda Knox on trial in Italy for allegedly murdering her roommate during a drug-fueled sex game. So why was the defendant all smiles in the courtroom? I will take your calls. Dial 1- 877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297. Sound off on Italy`s trial of the century.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Pretty American coed Amanda Knox on trial in Italy for allegedly killing her roommate during a twisted drug-fueled sex game. But you`d never know it by watching her smile and giggle in court. I`m going to take your calls on this bizarre case in just moments.

But first, "Top of the Block" tonight.

An appalling story out of Orlando, and by the way, why is all the crazy news stateside anyway coming from Florida these days? A woman allegedly let a friend borrow her car early Sunday morning while her 18-month-old son was still in it.

The mother was too busy partying to know or care. It gets worse. The friend then took the car and parked it outside a known drug house. It was then stolen with the baby still in it. Thankfully, the little boy was found several hours later crawling around a woman`s front yard in the wet 40-degree weather. Take a listen to the 911 call.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m in my house. I opened the door and there`s a kid. I mean, right here. It was dropped off. Maybe he -- he`s like a year old.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you. We`ve been looking for him.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank God for that good Samaritan caller. The mother Juliana Moreno charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Joshua Barnes, the friend who allegedly took the car to the drug house charged with child neglect. And David Carver, the man who allegedly stole the car, charged with grand theft auto.

Look at that trio right there. This is one of the most despicable stories I`ve ever covered. Not one, not two but three adults actively endangering a defenseless child. Absolutely shameful.

Now, from the unthinkable in terms of stupidity to shockingly inappropriate behavior by an American coed, on trial for the drug-fueled ritualistic sex murder of her British roommate.

Amanda Knox dubbed a "femme fatale" and her estranged boyfriend being tried in Italy for the stabbing death of 21-year-old British student, Meredith Kercher. We`re also going to say Kercher was tortured and killed after she refused to take part in a sick game -- a sick game, sick, sick, sick -- sick game of sexual high jinx. Police found her half-naked body in a pool of blood and her throat was cut.

And now new appalling images from the courtroom reveal the smiling and apparently carefree Seattle coed laughing with her attorneys and the translator. Witnesses say during a recess, she also flirted with her one- time lover and current co-defendant who she once accused of lying to investigators.

Meantime, defendant Amanda Knox a.k.a. "Foxy Knoxy" has filed a $600,000 lawsuit. It`s over a salacious sex-filled tell-all book based on her secret diaries seized by cops when she was arrested. Are you following all this? They want a book called "Amanda and the Others" pulled from the shelves.

Oh boy, so much to discuss in this case, give me a holler. 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297 to weigh in. That was a mouthful of bad behavior there, folks.

Joining me now, my panel: Anita Kay, criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor Robi Ludwig, a psychotherapist and Steve Huff, editor of the "The True Crime Report" a Village Voice media blog. He has been covering this story from the very start.

This is a huge case in Italy; hundreds of journalists and paparazzi converging on this trial. What`s the back story with these two former lovers now on trial and what did they say to each other in court? Steve Huff.

STEVE HUFF, WWW.TRUECRIMEREPORT.COM: The back story, of Amanda and Raffaele were dating, of course, when Meredith Kercher was murdered and they were arrested together. And what they said to each other in court though, which was so interesting was -- I think it was during a recess. Amanda approached Rudi -- not Rudi, Raffaele -- Rudi is the guy who has already been convicted.

She approached Raffaele and said, "Ciao, how are you doing," and told him that he looked great with his hair cut short. He`d been wearing it long in prison and recently got it cut short. And he blushed. And then they had a conversation about him being moved to a new facility where he was going to be isolated from the rest of the prisoners.

And she complained about one of her cell mates snoring. It was a casual conversation except they`re both murder defendants. It was a little bit bizarre and surreal, the way it`s been described in British and Italian newspapers.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Anita Kay, as a defense attorney, do you think it`s inappropriate and just bad strategy to flirt with your co-defendant when you`re charged with a murder that involves sex games?

ANITA KAY, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Jane, I think to say inappropriate is putting it mildly. As a defense attorney, the first thing I tell my clients is how you behave in court. And everybody is watching you: the judge, the prosecutor, the jury. They`re all watching your behavior.

And as a prosecutor, I certainly watch defendants` behavior because I may glean a little information from that. So as her attorney, I would say, "Hey, knock it off. Inappropriate. You don`t talk to him. Let alone talk about the things that you`re talking about, about a hair cut." Because the reality is it makes her look guilty.

And if she`s not guilty, you still say, inappropriate. Your roommate was murdered. Even if you didn`t do it, you`d think you`d be a little upset to be on trial for your life.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, Robi Ludwig, her nickname is "Foxy Knoxy." And I`m thinking maybe she`s crazy like a fox because she`d had a falling out with this former lover/co-defendant. She had given an alibi and saying I wasn`t there that I was at his house and he apparently said, no she wasn`t at my house for the entire evening when this went down.

Is it possible that she`s trying to befriend him so that he doesn`t basically throw her under the bus?

LUDWIG: I don`t know. I mean, it might be that she`s young and really doesn`t get it and perhaps she`s just very seductive. And that`s how she interacts with the various people in her life. Because she doesn`t know what flirting and getting on his good side would do. Listen, when it comes to a murder trial, it`s every man for himself.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, I also have another theory. Is it possible -- and I have to direct this to Robi because you`re the psychotherapist -- that she might be a sex-addict.

Let`s look at the evidence: that she was allegedly involved in this sex game that turned into a murder, she wrote secret diaries that we`re seized when she was arrested that are now the subject of a best-selling book, all filled with sexual details. And that`s probably why it`s a best-seller in Italy right now.

LUDWIG: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And on top of that, she`s flirting with her co-defendant in court. Sex-addict?

LUDWIG: Well, if that`s a possibility. I`d also want to know about if there was any type of sexual abuse in her history and also want to know if there was some drug abuse. Because it sounds like if there was some crazy, bizarre sex crime, I would wonder if she was high on something. But it`s possible to have two addictions at the same time.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Amanda Knox suing for more than $500,000 because she says this tell-all books loaded with sexual details has caused her a lot of damage. Here is the author, an Italian crime journalist talking about Knox. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FIORENZA SARZANINI, AUTHOR, "AMANDA AND THE OTHERS" (trough translator): What comes out in the investigation is her ability to transform herself. She is certainly a girl with many faces.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Anita Kay, does she have any legal authority to knock this book off the shelves because it`s bad for her trial?

KAY: Well, here is the thing, Jane, this is going on in Italy, so there`s a different -- obviously, a different system. You know here in the states, those accused of crimes, and certainly those who are prosecuted and convicted of crimes, can`t make money off their -- their stories, so to speak.

But here, she`s going to say, well, what? The diary was stolen. Or did she actually give it to them. I don`t think this case is going to go anywhere.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think it`s already out of the -- that bird has flown the coop.

KAY: Exactly.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Because it`s a bestseller in Italy, all right.

KAY: Right.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Stay right there, everyone. More on this bizarre sex murder in Italy in just a minute.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I`m back with my guests and we`re taking your calls. We`re talking about the seditious sex ritual murder of British student, Meredith Kercher. Her American roommate, Amanda Knox and Amanda`s Italian former boyfriend on trial in Italy for the crime.

Phone lines lighting up. Dana, Washington, question or thought, ma`am?

DANA OF WASHINGTON: Well, hi, Jane and you`re doing a fabulous job.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you.

DANA: My question is are her parents going to be able to fly over to Italy to attend her trial and obtain a lawyer for her over there?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, very good question. Steve Huff.

HUFF: As far as I know, they have -- her stepfather and her mother and, as well as I think her biological father, have flown over to Italy several times. In fact, I think they`ve even rented apartments in Perugia. And they have been able to raise money. I`m not sure of the source to get Amanda her attorneys.

But they`ve been able to help her out and they`ve been able to be with her on several occasions.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Pam in California, question or thought?

PAM IN CALIFORNIA: Hi. I was just wondering if this is going to be a death penalty case? And if so, second question, is there a death penalty in Italy?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right I think we`re going to go to Steve Huff first, because you have all of the details on this.

HUFF: To my knowledge, no death penalty in Italy and she may get what the Italians consider life. And it could be as little as 25 years.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, Robi Ludwig, people are so fascinated with this case all across Europe. Again some of the quote, "details from her secret diary," the sexual details or a best-selling book in Italy, everybody`s talking about it; hundreds of journalists there.

And one describes this. Saying that Amanda Knox, the American who is charged with murder is quote, "a strange but fascinating mixture of femme fatale and fresh face, innocent" end quote.

What is so -- particularly intriguing about that combination?

LUDWIG: Well, it`s bizarre when a person`s looks doesn`t indicate who they really are. And there is something very intriguing about that especially when there is a sexual sadism so of speak and a sexuality. Whenever you`re talking about sex it`s interesting and then you marry that with a person who is fresh faced and young and innocent looking and that`s a pretty powerful combination.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It sure is. Only have a couple of seconds.

Steve Huff, forensics against her. Apparently her DNA is on the murder weapon along with the victim`s DNA.

HUFF: The prosecutor says that Amanda`s DNA is on the handle of the knife and Meredith`s is on the tip the knife.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, we`re going have to leave it right there. Anita, Robi, Steve, thank you so much for joining me tonight.

I`m Jane Velez-Mitchell and you are watching "ISSUES" on HLN.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That story we`re covering of course, authorities say 21- year-old Amanda Knox`s girl next door beauty masks a predator who used a bizarre ritualistic sex game to satisfy her very twisted appetite. That game prosecutors claim ended the death of another young woman.

Knox`s fate now basically in the hands of an Italian jury after they hear all the evidence. As this case unfolds I`m going to bring you the very latest on "ISSUES."

But right now it`s time to check in with Nancy Grace. Nancy what you got for us tonight?

NANCY GRACE, ANCHOR, "NANCY GRACE SHOW": Jane, new jailhouse video of intense confrontation between grandparents George and Cindy Anthony. They`re visiting the tot mom behind bars. We have the video.

And is tot mom`s defense attorney actually pursuing a TV entertainment deal? We also learn the tot mom says she`s the victim; still claiming the nanny did it.

Also tonight, Jane, a missing 11-year-old boy never reported missing by his parents. Where is Adam Herman?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s absolutely tragic.

Nancy, thank you very much. Nancy Grace starts right now.

END

Home  |  Asia  |  Europe  |  U.S.  |  World  |  World Business  |  Technology  |  Entertainment  |  World Sport  |  Travel
Podcasts  |  Blogs  |  CNN Mobile  |  RSS Feeds  |  Email Alerts  |  CNN Radio  |  Site Map
© 2009 Cable News Network. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.