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ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL
Cindy Anthony Makes New Claims about Caylee`s Murder; Did Melissa Huckaby Commit Arson?
Aired April 22, 2009 - 19:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, it`s the amazing Anthony family media tour. Cindy and George appear on "The Early Show." While speaking out about daughter Casey`s murder rap, Cindy casually drops an astounding new conspiracy theory, saying Casey didn`t call cops about her missing daughter because she feared for the lives of her entire family. What? We`ll dissect the stunning new claim.
Then, another total shocker in the case of the Sunday schoolteacher charged with the rape and murder of a little girl. Now, cops say Melissa Huckaby is also a suspect in at least one house fire from two years ago. So claims of mental illness, a prior abduction and now arson? How many red flags did everybody overlook?
And jaw-dropping claims in the Haleigh Cummings case. One person says dad Ron was mysteriously spotted cruising around near the home of his illegitimate son. Could a new custody battle be brewing? I`ll speak to investigative journalist Art Harris about the dramatic twist and the wild cast of characters in this tragic soap opera.
Plus, a friend of Octomom Nadya Suleman now claims Nadya was a stripper for a year. That`s a lot longer than the one night of stripping Octomom previously fessed up to.
Also, Suleman tells Radar Online she now wants to get a dog. Just what that house needs, another creature dependent on Octomom for survival.
ISSUES starts now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, a bombshell suicide shocker. Cindy Anthony admits she, too, considered killing herself after her precious granddaughter Caylee disappeared. Cindy tells the CBS "Early Show" she even drafted suicide notes.
As we know, her husband, George, went a step further and actually attempted suicide back in January. Thankfully, he survived.
Cindy also dropped this stunning new conspiracy theory. It`s a startling new answer to a question that has plagued this case from the very start. Why did Casey fail to report her own daughter Caylee missing for an entire month?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Have you had a chance to ask Casey why she didn`t report Caylee missing?
CINDY ANTHONY, MOTHER OF CASEY ANTHONY: Yes. I`m sure she was afraid. I mean, that`s the answer; she was afraid.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What was she afraid of?
C. ANTHONY: She - you know, I can`t answer that right now.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But she told you she feared for, what, her life, Caylee`s life, both?
C. ANTHONY: She feared for all of our lives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What? Cindy says Casey did not report her own child missing because she feared the entire Anthony family was at risk of being killed?
So let`s see, is she suggesting now that the mystery nanny wanted to kill the whole Anthony family? If so, why?
As for Casey protecting her family, well, she didn`t seem very considerate when she was allegedly lying and stealing money from them, did she?
Meantime, Oprah has canceled the Anthonys` interview set for next month after they talked somewhere else first. What exactly are the Anthonys trying to accomplish with this TV tour? Is this "Extreme Makeover: Anthony Edition"?
I am taking your calls tonight. But first, right to my fabulous expert panel: Thomas Ruskin, former NYPD detective and resident of the CMV Protective and Investigative Group; Paul Callan, criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor; Mike Eiglarsh, criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor. Plus, Rebecca Woodland, criminal defense attorney; and a very special guest tonight, Karen Mills-Francis, host of "Judge Karen" and former court judge for Miami-Dade County.
Judge Karen, you have been watching this saga for months. What do you make of the Anthonys` new conspiracy theory that Casey didn`t call the cops because she feared for the lives of everyone in her own family? Wouldn`t that make you want to call the cops even sooner?
KAREN MILLS-FRANCIS, HOST, "JUDGE KAREN": You know what? The United States Supreme Court said it best: death is different. And I say from the prosecutor announcing last week that the state is seeking the death penalty in this case, I believe it changed everything for the Anthony family.
There`s nothing new in this conspiracy theory. If you recall, way back in July, that was Caylee`s story -- I mean, Casey`s story about what had happened. She was -- she was in fear for the safety of her family.
But now this family realizes that they`ve lost their only grandchild, and that if their daughter is convicted and put to death, it`s going to be blood on their hands. So I think they`re getting with -- with Casey`s program now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, I agree with you. I think that that was a wakeup call for the Anthonys, and they just said, "We`re going to do whatever we can right now, starting now, to try to save our daughter`s life." Very good observation.
Mark Eiglarsh, you know, when it comes to this new conspiracy theory, it reminds me of the O.J. Simpson case, the first, criminal trial, where he claimed, well, he didn`t kill Ron and Nicole; the Colombian drug dealers did. You know, let`s just point to somebody else out there and then, you know, create a whole conspiracy theory, based out of whole cloth.
MARK EIGLARSH, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, that`s what the defense lawyers, that`s what we`ve got to do. You`ve got to create reasonable doubt. And if she didn`t do it, who did?
And immediately upon her apprehension, she said it was Zenaida Gonzalez. Well, they`ve been able to prove through the civil lawsuit she does not exist. This one did not -- she had nothing to do with it.
So now it`s another one. And you know who`s going to back up Casey`s story about that? Who? Her parents. Her parents, as we learned in the deposition, they`re going to say, "No, she talked about this other Zenaida frequently. I had her address written down, her telephone number. Oh, I don`t have it with me right here at the deposition. I have it close by in the car." You know? You know?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. But Rebecca Rose Woodland, here`s the thing: why would any nanny want to kill the Anthony family?
REBECCA ROSE WOODLAND, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I think now they`re going to claim this maybe really isn`t a nanny. Maybe she had some connection, as you said, I don`t know, to the Colombian drug lords.
But I think there might be something. When you`re fearing for your life, a nanny, not necessarily. Fearing for your life from some maybe gang, drug people.
WOODLAND: Who knows what she`s going to say? She did steal money from the parents. So they can maybe use that, the defense, in saying, she did have a bit of a problem. Maybe she owed money to some loan sharks. Who knows? And these were the people who were out for her and her family.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The nanny is part of a gang. How she upset the gang. And the gang targets the whole family.
WOODLAND: She could owe money to them. Who knows?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what? That`s why you guys are great defense attorneys.
CBSearlyshow.com just released this absolutely jaw-dropping sneak peek of what will air tomorrow morning when Cindy Anthony talks about her own thoughts of suicide.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
C. ANTHONY: I understand certain things. I understand his suicide attempt. A lot of people don`t know. I was there, too. I wrote suicide notes back in the end of July and August. No one knows that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, Paul Callan, given the nightmare that they were living this past summer, people attacking them on their own front lawn. It isn`t completely surprising. Our hearts go out to the, obviously. But you have to ask, why is she revealing this now? Is this, you think, a plea for sympathy?
PAUL CALLAN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: It`s definitely a plea for sympathy. But it`s a very foolish way to orchestrate a defense. I mean, I don`t understand how Baez is allowing this to happen.
This is now a death penalty case. This is the most serious thing that a lawyer can face. And to send these two people out in front of the cameras with this bogus story, I mean, if you`re going to put the defense out, put some meat on it, make it believable. But instead, they throw this tale out that nobody can believe. And by the time the case goes to trial, it will be utterly discredited.
So where does that get their daughter? They`re going to -- they`re putting her on a straight line into the death chamber. There`s no question about it with this sort of approach.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. Well, Cindy Anthony told CBS`s "Early Show" this morning why she didn`t worry when she hadn`t seen Caylee in a very long time. Listen to this one.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
C. ANTHONY: She was with her mom. And I believed that, you know, she was with her mom. And I`ve never had a reason not to trust Casey with Caylee. You know, Casey made Caylee her priority. And it was very evident, anybody that ever saw Casey and Caylee together, that Caylee was No. 1 for Casey.
So I never had a reason -- I mean, Casey was Caylee`s mom. Casey was Caylee`s mom. Caylee belonged to her. I`m just the grandmother.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: This flies in the face, Thomas Ruskin, of reports of Cindy Anthony fought with Casey over how she was raising Caylee, even threatened to seek custody of the grandchild.
We know Casey was partying in clubs after Caylee disappeared on June 16. You know, Cindy`s own brother says this, quote, "No parent would be at a nightclub every Friday night after her daughter is kidnapped. She has not remorse and doesn`t care about anyone except herself," end quote.
So how can Cindy say this with a straight face?
RUSKIN: I don`t know how she says it with a straight face. Her -- her own husband was an ex homicide detective. And all of a sudden, their granddaughter is missing after they`ve seen them every single day or every other day for as long as she`s been around and as long as she`s been in the house. It defies logic. It really -- it doesn`t pass. As the lawyers on the panel will say, it doesn`t pass the sniff test. It`s like, give me a break.
And Judge Mills, here`s what occurs to me. Obviously, we`ve talked a lot about how Casey Anthony is a pathological liar. She lied about having a job. She lied about where she was taking the child. She lied about a nanny, according to authorities.
So now when we hear the mother saying things that seem to fly in the face of truth, doesn`t that hurt Casey even more, because it`s like the apple doesn`t fall far from the tree?
MILLS-FRANCIS: I thought the same thing. But you know what? Desperate people do desperate things. And I believe what this family has realized is that this case is going to be tried in the public eye. You`re not going to be able to find one juror who hasn`t heard about this case, and possibly has already come to the conclusion in his or her own mind about the guilt or innocence of this defendant.
So I think the family is grasping at straws, trying to stay above water, coming up with anything that they think will get them a pardon. I don`t think they`re looking for not guilty. They`re looking for a jury pardon, which means "We believe that she`s probably guilty, but we feel sorry for her. We feel sorry for the family."
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wait. Isn`t that -- isn`t that jury nullification, Mark Eiglarsh?
EIGLARSH: It is. And they`re not supposed to do that. I don`t think that`s where this is headed. If they can find one potential juror who somehow is sympathetic to their cause, then they`ve achieved their goal. That`s what they`re trying to do.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Very good point. All it takes is one.
All right. Everyone, fantastic panel.
Much more analysis of the Anthonys` interview in moments. Don`t forget: "Nancy Grace" up immediately following this program at 8 p.m. She will have the latest fallout from George and Cindy`s media blitz.
And right here on ISSUES, I will be taking your calls. Do you think Casey Anthony`s parents truly believe she`s innocent, or is this just spin: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297. Sound off to me.
Then cops say suspected rapist/murderer Melissa Huckaby may have committed arson two years ago. Plus, a mom in the neighborhood reportedly warned cops about Huckaby. Did everyone ignore red flags?
But first, Cindy Anthony says she stands behind her daughter. That didn`t seem to be the case when she called 911 about the smell in Casey`s car.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
C. ANTHONY: The babysitter took her a month ago, that my daughter`s been looking for her. There`s something wrong. I found my daughter`s car today, and it smells like there`s been a dead body in the damn car!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE ANTHONY, CASEY ANTHONY`S FATHER: I`m not going to answer anything about the criminal part of it. I`m not going to do that.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But you`re going to have to.
G. ANTHONY: I have to do that when the criminal case comes out. Not in a civil case, I do not.
C. ANTHONY: You slandered me on TV. She didn`t have a fight with me. Go there. Go there, Mr. Morgan. She didn`t fight with me, sir.
G. ANTHONY: I have not heard my granddaughter`s voice since June 16, 2008. Do not ask me that again, sir, because I will walk out of here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Many sides of the Anthonys, Cindy and George showing their hostile side under oath just a couple weeks ago. Now the couple is doing a media tour, possibly trying to give their reputations an extreme makeover. But is it working?
I want to hear from you. Back taking your calls. Phone lines lighting up.
Dorothy in Pennsylvania, your question or thought, ma`am?
CALLER: Hi, Jane. Great panel tonight.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you.
CALLER: During the deposition, whenever they were asked tough questions, George or Cindy, they yelled back and -- or refused to answer questions. This morning, on "The Early Show," when Cindy was asked about her changing her statement from when she first called 911, and told about the smell in the car, this morning she didn`t answer, and she referred it to her lawyer.
I just want to know, how do they expect to testify during the criminal trial?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Go ahead. I heard Mark.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Rebecca Rose Woodland.
WOODLAND: You know what I think is happening? Their personal attorney was there today at the CBS "Early Show," and he advised them. They knew the questions in advance. That`s what happened this morning.
So he -- they looked to him. He took over. He said, "Well, we`ll discuss that at the trial. We`ll be more apt (ph) and open at the trial to answer those questions."
At the deposition, they can`t do that. Their attorney can put in an objection. But there are some questions that they have to answer.
CALLAN: You know, but Rebecca, the thing that I`m seeing in the deposition, the civil deposition, they`re horrible witnesses. They`re being -- they`re fighting with the attorneys. They`re being contentious. They`re not going to be likable witnesses on the witness stand in front of a jury if they perform like that.
WOODLAND: I don`t know, Paul. You could -- yes, but you could spin it as a defense attorney and say, "Look, of course, they`re angry and hostile. These people are trying to convict my daughter and put her to death."
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you. Sometimes the prosecution witness can go up there and totally mess things up. I mean, I remember Debbie Rowe, who was supposed to be a prosecution witness, who was put in front of the jury in the Jackson trial, and she started making gaga eyes at Michael Jackson and talking about what a great father he was. So they pulled the rug -- the rug right out from under the prosecution, left them literally speechless and shocked.
So it can happen. I mean, you never can predict exactly how people will perform when they take the witness stand.
Do you think, Thomas Ruskin, it`s a risk to even put the Anthonys on the witness stand?
THOMAS RUSKIN, FORMER NYPD DETECTIVE: I think that they have to take the stand. And I think that they`re going to have to explain certain things that have happened.
I think that, you know, we don`t know yet what the police have as far as the evidence is concerned that came out of the Anthony house. We know portions of it. But the police may have a lot more. And these people may have covered up some evidence. That`s maybe why they`ve lawyered up, in police terms.
So, you know, we don`t know yet why they`re so scared of coming forward and just telling the truth at this point in time. and I don`t know why they`re on the media tour to begin with.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I have to say, I don`t have any evidence that they`ve covered up anything.
Helen, Alabama, your question or thought, ma`am.
CALLER: Hi, there.
CALLER: I am a mom of three and a grandmother of five, so I`ve been very concerned about this case from day one. Now, to my knowledge, George is either in law enforcement or retired from law enforcement.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Retired from it.
CALLER: OK. Law enforcement, just like the firemen, have a strong brotherhood. Now, if this child was apprehended, that girl should have run home to her father, and all those policemen, and law enforcement would have dropped everything and turned to that case immediately, because they look out for their own.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but Mark, he was law enforcement in another state, in another time. It`s not like he was a local cop in that area.
EIGLARSH: That`s correct. And she`s not running to anybody. She -- you know, she has her reasons. Either she was scared for her family, like her parents allege, or she had played a role in her child`s death. She`s not running to anybody.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Judge Karen mills, you have your own show, "The Judge Karen Show," a fabulous show indeed. Do you think the Anthonys made a big mistake by not waiting to go on Oprah? Because Oprah was going to have them on in May. And now that they`ve gone on this show, she`s basically said, "Fuggedaboudit."
MILLS-FRANCIS: Maybe. I was really surprised to hear that they had decided to start this media tour early. Maybe they didn`t realize that Oprah was going to say, "Hey, guys, if you`re talking to other news media outlets, we`re not going to be interviewing you." I understood that it was Oprah who backed out, not the Anthony family.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, Oprah basically said, "Hey, if you`re going to be talking to other media and stealing our thunder, thank you, but no thank you. Bye-bye."
EIGLARSH: There`s nothing left to say. Did you see what happened? This interview. I mean, every tough question, every single thing that we really want to know the answer to, she then turns to her attorney. We`re not getting anything new.
CALLAN: We did -- we did get something new. We`ve got the grandmother now saying that she was considering suicide also. So now we have two grandparents with a missing granddaughter, and they respond to it by trying to commit suicide. That doesn`t exactly -- that doesn`t exactly make them credible witnesses.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`ve got more of this interview tomorrow. So who knows who else could come out. And we`ll be right on top of it here tomorrow.
Thank you, fantastic panel. We will have more on the Casey Anthony drama in just a bit.
Now, police say suspected rapist and murder, Melissa Huckaby, also an arson suspect? Can you believe that? You`re not going to believe this insane twist in the case.
And then, when Octomom said she was a stripper for one day? Her friend said it was a whole year. I will have the scandalous new details next.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: In the spotlight tonight, alleged child killer and rapist Melissa Huckaby, the Sunday schoolteacher accused of 8-year-old Sandra Cantu`s death, faces still more accusations. They include child abduction, petty theft, and now, believe it or not, arson? Was this another missed warning sign of terrible things to come?
Sandra Cantu`s mom spoke to Dr. Phil about Melissa Huckaby today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARIA CHAVEZ, SANDRA CANTU`S MOTHER: I just -- when I see her on Friday, I was -- I talked with her casually.
DR. PHIL MCGRAW, TV SHOW HOST: How shocked were you to find out that she was a suspect in this case?
CHAVEZ: Very shocked.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Poor thing.
Also speaking out, Laura Pope, the mother of a 7-year-old girl who disappeared for four hours with Huckaby in January. She says Huckaby did not have permission to take her daughter, as Huckaby claims. She charges the child came back drugged and says she told the cops, "Check out Melissa Huckaby" when little Sandra disappeared.
Back with me, Mark Eiglarsh, criminal defense attorney; and by phone, Bob Moffitt, reporter with KFBK Newstalk 1530.
Bob, what is the very latest on this arson development?
BOB MOFFITT, REPORTER, KFBK NEWSTALK 1530: Well, there are apparently two arsons: one of an apartment and one of a complex in 2007 that were investigated. Huckaby was listed as a suspect. But police were never able to put her together enough with the crimes in order to charge her.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But I understand that that happened somewhere else, and then when Sandra disappeared, that police department somehow contacted the Tracy Police Department. How did they know to make that connection?
MOFFITT: Well, with the amount of -- with Huckaby being where she was, and -- it may have had a connection as far as, you know, if you leave town, let us know where you`re going. They may have known where she ended up.
As far as them putting the two together, that is -- there`s a question. We have -- certainly have calls in to the police department to find out how they made that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, Melissa Huckaby admitted to taking a 7-year-old girl back in January. Listen to her own voice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MELISSA HUCKABY, MURDER SUSPECT: I had taken my daughter and one of her friends to the park, which I had done for the third time that week. The mother was, I guess, at work. And the grandmother had told the little girl that she could go to the park, which she does all the time.
And when the mother came home, she didn`t know where she was. I had given the mother my phone number -- my cell phone number, in case anything happened, she could get a hold of me. She claims to have lost the phone number.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The mother of the little girl, Mark Eiglarsh, says no way, that didn`t happen. Nobody gave her permission. And the child came back drugged.
Now we`re hearing these suspicions of arson, even though she hasn`t been charged with any arson counts. Boy, this litany is getting longer and longer. What do you make of it?
EIGLARSH: Well, that`s correct. But again, presumed to be innocent on those charges as well as the current homicide.
Law enforcement said it today: "We didn`t have probable cause in the little girl case. We don`t necessarily at this point have probable cause in the other two alleged arson cases."
And so it`s much ado about nothing until they can find probable cause, make an arrest, and have prosecutorial cases -- prosecutable cases.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. And I don`t know why, if it happened in 2007, they didn`t figure out whether or not they had enough to charge her, and charge her if they were going to do that. You`re absolutely right.
Bob, Mark, thanks.
Shocking new twists in the Haleigh Cummings disappearance. I`ll talk live to an investigative reporter, who`s got exclusive new information about why a new custody battle could be brewing next.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Stunning new claims in the Haleigh Cummings case. One person says dad Ron was spotted cruising around near the home of his illegitimate child. Could a new custody battle be brewing?
Plus, new claims Nadya Suleman was a stripper for a year; much longer than the one night of stripping she`s fessed up to. Also, Suleman also says she wants a dog. Just what that house needs, another creature dependent on octo-mom for survival.
That crazy octo-mom.
More on octo-mom`s latest escapades in just moments.
But first, a suicide note shocker. Cindy Anthony tells the CBS "Early Show" she considered killing herself, even writing suicide notes after her little granddaughter Caylee went missing.
Right to my expert panel: Mark Eiglarsh, criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor; plus Karen Mills Francis, a former court judge for Miami-Dade County and host of the very successful "Judge Karen Show." Delighted to have you with us judge.
KAREN MILLS FRANCIS, FORMER COURT JUDGE, MIAMI-DADE COUNTY: Thank you.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The phone lines lighting up.
Debbie, Minnesota -- your question or thought, ma`am.
DEBBIE, MINNESOTA (via telephone): Yes, ma`am. I want to know if it`s possible that because maybe the Anthonys might be doing this on purpose, because of all the inconsistencies, and now all the talks of the suicide, would they be a credible witness for either side?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Judge Karen Mills, you`re the judge. When you look at this situation, everybody`s speculating so much about their testimony. Who are they going to testify for? How are they going to testify? What are they going to say? What are your thoughts?
FRANCIS: I just think that the defense has made this case a circus, you know. It started with the defendant`s attorney, Mr. Baez, there`s always things that are leaking. There are silly motions that are filed.
There`s the grandparents always saying, you know, questionable things. And I believe that if this woman doesn`t get a fair trial, a lot of it has to do with the defense side of the case, not the prosecution side of the case.
There`s only one woman ever sentenced to death in the state of Florida for killing her child. And that woman`s case just came back on appeal last year after ten years. And guess why it came back?
FRANCIS: Ineffective assistance of counsel.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ooh, wow.
So maybe sometimes it`s in your best interest to have a bad lawyer, Mark Eiglarsh.
MARK EIGLARSH, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, I wouldn`t know from that. When you say bad lawyer, you point to me. I don`t like that, Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I`m not pointing at you. Listen, if I was in trouble, I`d call you.
EIGLARSH: God bless you.
But let me just say this. Ineffective assistance of counsel is the number one reason why defendants try to get their convictions overturned. But you know what? The appellate courts don`t necessarily want to reverse conviction. So, I say, get a great lawyer the first time around and beat the charges. That`s the way to go.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Now listen, the CBS "Early Show" asked Cindy Anthony if she ever felt like something just wasn`t quite right. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED CBS HOST, "THE EARLY SHOW": Even though there had, and these are well-documented times when she had lied to you, you never once thought something is not quite right with the story she`s telling us?
CINDY ANTHONY, CASEY ANTHONY`S MOTHER: No. There was never a red flag until July 15th.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What? Another stunner. There was no red flag until July 15th which is when Cindy called 911? I mean, judge, come on. Nobody had seen little Caylee for a month. Cindy was reportedly desperately trying to find out where her granddaughter was.
FRANCIS: Listen, she`s the reason, the grandmother is the reason why the police started investigating this case in the first place because she didn`t believe her own daughter. I don`t believe that Cindy Anthony thought back then in July of last year that we were going to end up here. I don`t believe she thought when she made that telephone call to the police, that she was implicating her daughter.
I just read again the transcript of that 911 phone call. When she says that, you know, the car smells like a dead body, decomposing. But she says, "My daughter says that the baby is with the nanny, or the babysitter." So maybe in her state of mind at that time, this babysitter, nanny, we don`t know who this person is -- they may be bringing her in from Colombia tonight, we don`t know -- but in her mind, that person had something to do with the child missing, not her daughter.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, well, that`s what she thought. Mark, last word?
EIGLARSH: They`re doing whatever they need to do to help their daughter; period, end of story. That`s what they`re doing. That may mean not telling the truth on the stand if that`s necessary.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. We`ll have to see whether this is actually helpful to their daughter or not.
Mark, Karen, thank you so much.
FRANCIS: Thank you so much.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Come back soon, judge. We love having you on.
Turning now to bizarre developments in the Haleigh Cummings disappearance: jaw-dropping claims as a frightened senior citizen calls 911, explaining she is the grandmother of -- you`ve got to follow this very, very carefully, and closely -- she is the grandmother of one of Ron Cummings` ex-girlfriends.
Ron, of course, is the father of missing Haleigh. This senior citizen claims Ron was cruising around near the home of his alleged one-year-old son, who we`re just learning about now and who`s reportedly disabled. Could a new custody battle be brewing?
Listen to this 911 shocker.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You know Ronald Cummings, whose daughter`s missing?
911 OPERATOR: Yes, ma`am.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ok. He was driving through my parking lot tonight. I have custody of his son that he claimed he didn`t have.
911 OPERATOR: Ok.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He`s one year old. And I`m very leery about that.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, we have no independent confirmation of this woman`s claims, that the child she cares for is Ronald Cummings` son. Nor that Ron was there that night. But Ron has been asked before about the possibility of his fathering other kids.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ronald, besides Junior, do you have another child?
RONALD CUMMINGS, HALEIGH`S FATHER: Haleigh.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Besides Haleigh and Junior?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Meantime, Ron`s lawyers furiously fire back at bounty hunter Cobra with this statement, quote, "William E. Staubs, who calls himself Cobra, has personally bonded out of jail two women who have previously provided negative information about Ronald Cummings. Amber brooks who had a relationship with Ronald, and amber`s friend, Kristina Prevatt. The act of personally bonding alleged witnesses taints any future testimony that they might provide."
Amber Brooks, by the way, is the mother of Ron`s alleged one-year-old disabled son who we`re just learning about. The dramatic twist, the wild cast of characters in this tragic soap opera makes my head spin. But does any of it get us closer to finding little Haleigh?
Joining me, Art Harris, investigative journalist who has broken exclusive after exclusive on his Web site, artharris.com, "The Bald Truth. Art, what is the very latest?
ART HARRIS, INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST, "THE BALD TRUTH": Jane, as you reported, I`ve got this 911 tape on my Web site where Mary Brooks, the grandmother of Amber Brooks, who just got bailed out of jail for cocaine possession, was keeping her son, who is Ronald`s child.
His name is Jordan. He`s got micro-encephaly which is a brain abnormality. And this is a child that Ronald apparently has been very ambivalent about. Had him for a couple of weeks, right after they were, I guess they were together and then they split.
Then Amber began raising him, turned him over to her grandmother, Mary Brooks, who I talked to today. Mary is in love with this child; has been taking care of him.
At one point, Ronald shows up, she tells me, three, four months -- three or four months old and said, "I`d like my son." She tells me she gave him the boy. And she was surprised that he brought him back the next day with all his clothes. She`s been keeping him ever since and wants to have him.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What does Ron say about all this? We don`t want to jump to the conclusion that this is Ron`s son. I have no independent confirmation of this.
HARRIS: I`ve spoken to Amber. She`s told me about it. I have spoken to Mary. And this is, quote, "common knowledge."
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What does Ron say?
HARRIS: I`ve tried to get to Ron`s lawyers, to his mother. And there`s no call back.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We just want to say, we would love to hear from Ron, and Ron`s attorneys, anybody. They have an open invitation to come on this show. And Misty, for that matter, and tell their side, spell it out. We want to hear from you.
The grandmother of one of Ron Cummings` ex-girlfriends, as you`ve been hearing, calls 911. Listen to this stunning exchange.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
911 OPERATOR: When Mr. Cummings came through, did he stop at all? Or did he just drive through, or...
MARY BROOKS, AMBER BROOKS` GRANDMOTHER: Well, he just cruised through and my daughter was coming through and they passed each other and se seen him and his new wife.
911 OPERATOR: And what`s your name?
BROOKS: Mary Brooks, I`m the great-grandmother.
911 OPERATOR: Ok.
BROOKS: And I have custody of the baby.
911 OPERATOR: Ok.
BROOKS: And I`m very upset about it.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, my, gosh. So many questions. First of all, why would Ron want this son if he`s ambivalent about the child?
HARRIS: Well, that`s a great question, Jane. The grandmother is getting about $500 a month in SSI for raising this disabled child. At the same time, some people think that Ron could use a little image makeover and perhaps another child in his care, especially a disabled child would show a real caring father.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me just say that given that he`s lost his daughter, and we don`t know where that child is, his heart may have opened up to this child and said, "Well, you know what, I do have a child right nearby. And now I want to be close to that child." Let`s not always ascribe negative motivations.
Again, we don`t know for sure if this is his child, that`s just the claim of his family. Nevertheless, I think what you`re reporting is fascinating.
What are the police saying about this? Because, obviously, you know, we`ve heard these allegations that you`ve reported from "Nene" (ph) claiming that Misty, who is Ron`s new wife, who was watching Haleigh disappeared, went on a three-day drug binge before little Haleigh disappeared. And we can`t get Misty`s side of the story on this although we`d like it.
HARRIS: Yes, I`ve heard that not only from "Nene". I`ve interviewed her. I`ve interviewed Amber. I`ve interviewed white boy Greg who had this sort of revenge romance with Misty who told, at least, Kristina Prevatt that she had gotten into a fight, a physical altercation with Ron, ran away and then went on this wild weekend. And that leads us to Cobra bailing "Nene" out of jail, along with Amber, who took him today back along that path of the weekend.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Listen, we`ve got to leave it right there. It is a soap opera. That means it will continue.
We want everybody`s side of this story. Everybody`s welcome to come on here and tell it. Thank you so much -- very much, Art.
Disturbing new evidence found in the suspected Craigslist killer`s apartment. You won`t believe it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Octo-mom`s friend says Nadya Suleman was a stripper for a whole year. I will bring you the shocking new details, and you will not believe what her stripper name was.
But first, "Top of the Block" tonight.
The case against suspected Craigslist killer, Philip Markoff, builds. Boston police allegedly found a handgun that was hidden in a hollowed out medical textbook inside Markoff`s home. Authorities believe it may have been the weapon used to kill Julissa Brisman.
Cops say they made another very disturbing discovery in that apartment; underwear from two of the victims. The 23-year-old med student pleaded not guilty yesterday in charges of murder, kidnapping and armed robbery.
Joining me, Lisa Bloom, anchor of the legal network "In Session." Lisa, authorities speculate gambling debt may have been the motive. But now that cops say Markoff kept the panties of the alleged victims, doesn`t that add a sexual component to the motive? Especially given that these women were reportedly offering erotic services?
LISA BLOOM, ANCHOR, "IN SESSION": Yes, Jane. And I would say a sexual obsession because here`s a guy who`s intelligent enough to get into a top medical school, intelligent enough to try to hide the weapon by carving out part of a book, and yet so stupid to keep souvenirs linking him to the victims. It`s not stupidity, it`s probably a sexual compulsion; it`s probably psychological problem and so alert, alert, look for a psychiatric defense here.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s fascinating. Again, this guy, pleading not guilty, he hasn`t been convicted of anything, he`s just been charged.
But another disturbing detail is the suspect was allegedly gambling, hitting the casinos two days after Julissa Brisman died. And authorities say she wasn`t just shot, that she was badly beaten. This was a violent crime. What do you think?
BLOOM: Oh, absolutely. I`m sorry, I thought you were throwing something out there.
BLOOM: Absolutely. I think you can put the two together. You`re so good on the issue of addictions and obsessions, put together the sexual addiction and the gambling obsession, you combine it into one, that`s why it makes perfect sense that he`s choosing exotic masseuses off of Craigslist because of their the perfect vulnerable victims to rob. And it also has the sexual component as well added to it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely. And speaking of addiction, we`re going to get to that issue with another subject that I know you know very well, Lisa.
Octo-mom exposed again. A celebrity magazine has explosive interviews with two people claiming to be her former colleagues. Now, a dirty little secret about her past as a stripper coming to light.
Octo-mom has said her stint as a topless dancer lasted just one night. But a stripper named Sage tells "In Touch Weekly" Nadya performed for at least a year. As for octo-mom`s story that she quit, a former boss says she didn`t walk off the job, she was fired. Quote, "she didn`t follow the rules. She was letting guys touch her. And she was touching them. And she wasn`t just topless, but totally nude."
Just wait until you hear what her stripper name was.
Meantime, the Suleman household is set to expand again. Octo-mom with 14 human dependents says a new pet will soon join the brood. She wants a pig -- the kids want a dog.
I`m an animal lover. While adopting an animal can be a wonderful act, it`s also a responsibility. Where does it end with her?
This is where the whole addiction theme comes in. I want to hear from you about all this. The phone lines open. Give me a holler. But first, my guests: back with the fantastic Lisa Bloom, anchor at the legal network, "In Session;" and Kim Serafin, senior editor of "In Touch Weekly."
Kim, these two accounts of Nadya`s stripping passed our polar opposites, with the emphasis on pole.
KIM SERAFIN, SENIOR EDITOR, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": You stole my line there.
Well, you know, when these reports first surfaced about her past, she said initially, it was just a one-time thing. It was a contest; a lingerie dance contest. And then when she did a radio interview subsequently after that, she had said, "Well, you know, we all have a past. I don`t want to resurrect the dead."
I think she was being kind of coy about that.
And now sources have come forward and have told "In Touch" a different story. As you mentioned, the club owner has come forward and has told "In Touch" that she did actually enter a contest, an amateur contest, but she didn`t just stay a day, stayed several days but then was let go.
And then this other woman has come forward, an exotic dancer who says that she met Nadya at one of these amateur contests and that the two of them continued to perform at bachelor parties and amateur contests together.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, I`ve heard of a lot of humiliating things but being fired as a stripper? One of the most humiliating.
BLOOM: Jane, can I make a rare moment of defending octo-mom? I think we all care a lot about her kids. If she was a stripper in her past, that was a legal profession that a lot of women do when they`re very short on money. It`s in her past. And I can understand lying about it because maybe she doesn`t want her kids to know.
Why do we care? And why do we look down on sex workers in this culture when for many women, that`s their best economic option.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you 100 percent. I don`t have anything against stripping. I don`t think that sexuality is evil or dirty. I don`t go there.
It`s just a matter of veracity. From the start, octo-mom has denied, for example, being obsessed by Angelina Jolie. She told Ann Curry she`s never even thought of her. But a source close to Jolie has said that Suleman wrote to her many times and the star was totally creeped out by her.
Here`s the kicker. "In Touch Weekly" reports you want to take a guess what octo-mom`s pole dancing alias was? Her stripper name was "Angelina." Kim.
SERAFIN: That is what co-workers are saying. Look, I`m going to give her some credit too. I know a lot of great publicists, great PR people, and a lot of them would never be able to generate the kind of buzz that she`s generating for her reality show. She is a brilliant marketer. I wouldn`t be surprised if she`s behind Susan Boyle`s singing appearance.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lisa, I agree.
I think she`s saying provocative things, Lisa, to keep herself in the news so she can keep her price up.
BLOOM: I think she can. But look, I don`t know. I think some of this is going a little bit too far. I mean, we all care a lot about the kids, and the focus on the health and welfare of the kids, and I think that was appropriate.
But when we go into her past and her stripping and her weird obsession with Angelina Jolie, I mean, she should have some privacy. And by the way, my stripper name is Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Back with more octo-drama in one moment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. CAROLE LIEBERMAN, FILED COMPLAINT AGAINST SULEMAN: What I think is the best solution is that each of these children before they bond with her more and get taken to a home where they`ll be in danger, physical and psychological danger, that they each be given to a home where they can be the focus of attention.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Harsh words from psychiatrist Dr. Carole Lieberman.
Now, we`ve heard octo-mom`s older kids weren`t so anxious to welcome the eight babies. But a household pet? Listen to what Nadya tells Radar Online.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NADYA SULEMAN, MOTHER OF OCTUPLETS: For a couple of years the kids have been asking for a dog, and I`ve actually been looking into a pet pig. Like a little one, a little pig.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So you`re saying that you want to put a diaper on the pig?
SULEMAN: Yes, I`d have to put a diaper on the pig.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And you want to put the pig in a playpen inside the house?
SULEMAN: Not in the house. It smells.
I`ve not found a pig yet that doesn`t grow but they`ve found I think - -
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look, I`m a big fan of pigs. They have a higher IQ, in fact, than dogs. And that`s why I don`t eat them.
Lisa, I know you`re a vegetarian too and you love animals. But is this the way to express it when you`ve already got 14 kids?
BLOOM: Absolutely not. And you should never take an animal in unless you`re fully prepared for the big responsibility. By the way, little pigs turn into big pigs, just FYI for Nadya. They don`t just stay little. Like puppies don`t just stay little.
I think she`s out of her mind. She`s way over her head with al of these kids. To bring an animal into the home, I mean, forget it, that animal is not going to be cared for properly.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, I agree with you 100 percent. It`s just getting crazier and crazier. And again, I think sometimes she says these things just to keep herself in the news because she`s negotiating for reportedly a reality show and she wants to stay on everybody`s mind while she`s doing that.
BLOOM: It`s working.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, it is working.
Sherrie, Ohio, your question or thought, ma`am.
SHERRIE, OHIO (via telephone): Well, I have a question and a thought. For one thing I think she ought to be encouraged to make as much money as she can. That way she`ll be able to pay back the state of California and the taxpayers all this money. And won`t she have to pay taxes on her income? I`ll hang up and listen.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Kim Serafin, you want to take it?
SERAFIN: Yes, again, I think nobody would fault her for doing a reality show because then she will be able to provide for a lot of these kids. And as long as it`s done tastefully in the way "Jon & Kate Plus Eight," is done and "Table for Twelve," two of my favorite shows -- I love those shows -- I think they could be done tastefully.
So again, I give her credit for...
SERAFIN: ... maintaining herself in the news, keeping herself in the news, marketing herself better than really anyone else could.
BLOOM: I would fault her. I would fault her. I don`t believe in raising kids in front of cameras 24/7. I think it`s exploitive and it`s bad for the kids.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you.
Thank you, fabulous panel for joining me tonight.
I`m Jane Velez-Mitchell. You`re watching ISSUES on HLN.