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ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL
Are Police to Blame for Woman Going Missing after Arrest?
Aired September 29, 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 a firestorm of controversy erupting in Malibu. New questions about how cops handled the disappearance of an executive assistant. This young woman was arrested because she couldn`t pay a $90 tab at a swanky restaurant overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Her car was impounded, and she was released at 1:30 in the morning in a remote area. Why didn`t cops give her a ride home? She has not been seen since.
Tonight`s big issue: would a celebrity have been treated the same way? We`ll ask the family attorney.
And Jon Gosselin dumped by TLC. The network is starting a new show called -- want to guess -- "Kate Plus 8," basically telling Jon, "Don`t let the door hit you in the you know what." Don`t think you`ve seen the last of Jon in his new outfit and earrings. Now, "InTouch Weekly" is reporting Jon wants to suspend the divorce.
Also, explosive new developments in the Caylee Anthony case. FBI documents claim a stain in Casey`s trunk appears to be in the silhouette of a child in the fetal position.
Meanwhile, was crucial evidence mishandled by the FBI? New claims that the infamous heart-shaped sticker outline found on the duct tape on Caylee`s mouth was accidentally destroyed. Has the prosecution sabotaged their own case?
Plus, outrage over a mind-boggling delay. It took seven hours to perform a sobriety test on an NYPD officer accused of killing a pedestrian while drunk driving behind the wheel. Was law enforcement trying to give this cop time to sober up before the test? We`ll have all the blood- boiling details.
ISSUES starts now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, missing in Malibu. The disappearance of Mitrice Richardson escalates into a firestorm of controversy. At issue: how was this south L.A. woman treated when she dared to dine in one of the most exclusive communities in the whole world?
Tonight, ISSUES tackles the question, did cops treat her like she didn`t count? How could police let a 24-year-old woman who several people described as acting strangely, leave a sheriff`s office alone in a remote area near Malibu in the middle of the night?
They let her leave without a car, since they impounded her car. She left without a purse. She left without a phone, all because she couldn`t pay a $90 restaurant tab, even though her great-grandma offered to pay it for her over the phone. That was 12 days ago. Mitrice hasn`t been heard from since.
Her frantic family is furious at police.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL RICHARDSON, MITRICE`S FATHER: I`m upset. But I`m going to keep a level head because I`ve been asked to. But I don`t expect for these people to move because they haven`t.
LITRICE SUTTON, MITRICE`S MOTHER: We want our daughter found. We feel that there`s not been enough efforts to locate her. All we want is our daughter home.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Police arrested Mitrice after she couldn`t pay for her dinner at a fancy Malibu restaurant overlooking the Pacific Ocean. They also found a small amount of pot in her car.
Cops say she turned down their offer to sleep at the sheriff`s office, deciding instead to walk out into the dark night all by herself. And that`s where she vanished. That`s why they call it Lost Hills.
Tonight, the big issue: if Mitrice were a celebrity, would it have gone down differently? Hmm, let`s see, you think? Last I heard Lindsay Lohan isn`t missing. If Mitrice had been a star, do you think cops would have given her a ride home, or put her in a cab, or called a limo, or called her family, or done something to make sure this young woman got home safely? Was the failure to do any of that just a case of mean in Malibu? A place where status is everything.
Did cops figure a woman who couldn`t pay her dinner tab was simply not worth the trouble? I want to hear from you at home.
First, straight out to my outstanding expert panel: former prosecutor Robin Bond. There she is. Lou Palumbo, director of Elite Intelligence and Protection Agency; forensic psychologist Brian Russell; and Leo Terrell, attorney for -- there`s Curtis Sliwa. And there is Leo Terrell, attorney for the Richardson family and WABC talk show host.
Leo, you`re the attorney for this frantic family. Now, we`re hearing a report from NBC in Los Angeles that the dad is saying he`s being held -- she`s being held against her will by a shady friend who`s feeding her pot, and he is now conducting his own investigation. This is a report just released moments ago. What is your thought on this new report?
LEO TERRELL, ATTORNEY FOR RICHARDSON FAMILY: Well, I tell you right now the LAPD and the sheriff department have been mum on the police report and a lot of information, and this has driven the dad to a frenzy. So he`s upset. He doesn`t believe he`s getting cooperation with the law enforcement.
We were at the LAPD station last night. Jane, we asked to see the police report. After 15 days they will not release it. We asked to get the phone messages from the calls she made. They refused to release it. There is a cover-up going to right now.
And I do have the communication tapes of the conversations that Mitrice made to the sheriff`s department. I`m going to release those tomorrow. But it reveals that someone saw Mitrice the night -- in the morning, and the sheriff`s department didn`t go over there till hours later. I`m going to release that tape tomorrow.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, we want to hear it first, because we`re staying on top of this story. We`re not letting it go, because I spent 18 years in Southern California covering Hollywood. And I know how celebrities are treated. And it is my humble opinion that, had she been a celebrity or had she been rich or had she been from Malibu, they would have found a way to get a car and take her home. Cops in Southern California...
TERRELL: I agree.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... are used to dealing with celebrities. Let`s recap La Lohan, Lindsay Lohan`s wild-fueled car chase in 2007. In Malibu, the actress allegedly took a car and took the two men inside, they say, against their will. She sped after her assistant and then her assistant`s mom.
Here`s one of the guys describing how Lindsay Lohan was acting that night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RONNIE BLAKE, CLAIMS LOHAN WAS DRIVING DRUNK: She looked really intoxicated like she was...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What?
BLAKE: ... she was really messed up. I don`t know what she was on. But I know she was on liquor and multi drugs. I don`t know what drugs it was, but she was raging.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Suffice it to say that the woman Lindsay was chasing drove right into the police station in Santa Monica.
Now, let me tell you something. Had this been anybody else, there`s a very good possibility that there could had been a charge of kidnapping, carjacking, and God only knows what. And nothing really happened to La Lohan.
We have the phone, we`re very delighted to have on the phone, exclusively right now the father of this poor missing woman, Michael Richardson. Mr. Richardson, thank you for joining us.
RICHARDSON (via phone): Thank you for having me.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What are your concerns, and what are your theories tonight as to what happened to your precious daughter?
RICHARDSON: My concern is she needs to be back home with her mother and father. My theory is I just really feel like the system in which we trust so much and put our trust in with the sheriff`s department has let us down and failed miserably.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I understand that there was some communication, that the family was aware that she`d been arrested, and they were under the impression -- you were under the impression, the family -- that she was going to spend the night at the sheriff`s station, and you would pick her up in the morning. How did this communication gap come about?
RICHARDSON: Well, basically, when this first initially happened, she passed a field sobriety test. So that means that she was not drunk. She later was -- still had been in a manner which they felt was concerned. So they took her to jail based on that.
But what should have happened, based on that, is they should have done a behavioral health assessment or had someone from case management come out and evaluate this situation for a possible 5150.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me -- Mr. Richardson, I don`t want to interrupt you, but I want to make sure our viewers who might -- this might jog their memory. They might be in Malibu, or they might have been in Malibu that night. They might see your beautiful daughter and say I remember.
But I want to ask you. This is something that I don`t understand here. I don`t understand what Mitrice`s state of mind was the night she vanished. People at the restaurant say she was acting strangely. She seemed intoxicated.
If you look at her mug shot, and we`re going to show you right now, her mug shot, and compare it to other shots. The earrings are the normal shots. The mug shot, her hair`s wild. She doesn`t look like the same person.
So my question to you is, did she have any kind of a psychological or emotional problem that you know of? Why would she suddenly behave erratically like this?
RICHARDSON: And that`s what I came down to either something was in her drink or she had a meltdown. I don`t know what led to that. I don`t know, but I know when I`d seen her booking picture I had goose bumps. I did not recognize person as my daughter. It brought tears to my eyes, and it scared me profusively [SIC].
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know, it`s happened in the past that mickeys, as they used to call them in the old day, drugs, can be slipped into a pretty young woman`s drink. It happens all the time. I`m not saying it happened at that restaurant. Don`t get me wrong. I`m not saying that at all. But it can happen.
You know what just doesn`t make sense to me, Malibu, I`ve actually eaten at that restaurant. It`s a great restaurant, great food. Beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean. If, let`s say, a Malibu resident or a rich person or a celebrity had forgotten their credit card, do you think the cops would had been called and she would end up, you know, in jail and then released at 1:30 in the morning, sir?
RICHARDSON: Of course not. Especially when someone in her family or her entourage or her camp had offered to pay the bill, which was done in my daughter`s case. Several people have offered to pay the bill.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: So apparently, the great-grandma -- the great-grandma called and said, "I`ll pay it." But according to the published reports that I`ve seen, they wanted a fax of a signature, and the great-grandma didn`t have a fax machine.
RICHARDSON: The great-grandma is 90 years old and cannot drive and cannot use a cell phone, if you will. So to say something about a fax -- a facsimile is just utterly impossible.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know this just doesn`t seem like, Curtis Sliwa. Michael, I`d like you, Mr. Richardson, to hang in there. But I want to get Guardian Angel Curtis Sliwa`s take on all of this. This is crazy!
CURTIS SLIWA, FOUNDER, GUARDIAN ANGELS: Well, No. 1, I think if you look at the restaurant, this young lady was sitting by herself, ordered a meal and then attached herself to a nearby group of eight, and they didn`t seem to reject her or complain to management. They just assumed she would pay for her own meal and her drinks, which at the end of it, she was incapable of.
And then the great-grandmother was more than happy to give her a credit card number. The restaurant should have just accepted it. The manager should have said, "Hey, look, if it doesn`t pass muster, it will be on my shift. I`ll deal with it."
But when it became a police matter, Jane, you have to understand, she is an adult. If she insisted upon being released, there is nothing the sheriff`s department can do to keep her in that facility.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Leo Terrell?
TERRELL: That`s not true. That is not true.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Leo, let...
TERRELL: No, let me get that point in.
SLIWA: You are wrong, Leo. You`re wrong.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wait, let me see the panel. Leo.
TERRELL: Jane, Jane, thank you, Jane. They have a right to hold these people if they show mental dysfunction. This woman was not drunk. There`s something called 5150. They could put a hold on her. They could have put a watch commander hold on her. It doesn`t make a different what her age is.
TERRELL: ... mental issues.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, hold on. Hold on. Please, please. We`ve got to go to break.
TERRELL (?): Jane, you`re wrong.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Mr. Richardson, please stay on the phone, sir. Your daughter`s missing. We want do everything we can to find her.
We`re going to be back in just a couple of seconds. We`re going to talk more about this missing woman in Malibu. Is it madness in Malibu? Is it mean in Malibu? I want to hear what you have to say: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1- 877-586-7297.
Coming up, what will Jon Gosselin do now that he`s unemployed.
But first, a missing girl`s dad points the finger at authorities. Are they responsible for his precious daughter`s disappearance?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARDSON (on camera): Geoffrey`s will not give me a tape. They will not give me a tape. Nobody will give me a report. Nobody`s doing nothing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHERIE HOWARD, MITRICE`S COUSIN: We don`t know the person that`s in that booking report. Something happened. What? That`s why we`re here today. What and where is she? We want her home.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That was Mitrice Richardson`s cousin. The 24-year- old woman has been missing since the night of September 17. That`s about 12 days ago, when she walked out of a sheriff`s station in the middle of the night, 1:30 a.m., no phone, no car. They`d impounded her car. No purse.
Back to my fantastic panel. I`m so delighted to have Michael Richardson, the father of the missing woman, joining us on the phone. Mr. Richardson, stand by. We want to include some our other guests for a second.
Robin Bond, what I don`t understand is that they went to this extreme length of impounding her car because she had this much pot. We know in California, there`s something called medicinal pot. And I lived there for 18 years. I can tell you that people are all over the place, taking medicinal pot. Nobody`s impounding their cars. And half of those people don`t need it for medical reasons, because anybody can buy medicinal pot by walking into a store and saying, "I`ve got a toothache or an earache, OK?"
So why are they going to the lengths of impounding this woman`s car because she`s got a little bit of a -- pot on her?
ROBIN BOND, FORMER PROSECUTOR: You know, I have no idea the amount of pot, but obviously she didn`t say it was medicinal pot and they were just looking for some excuse.
It`s almost like harassment to me, because I`m sitting here thinking, for whatever they did, look at the tremendous amount of expense that California is now going to incur because of all the searching for the woman. It would have all been avoid by a simple cab fare or a ride home. This just doesn`t make any sense, and it`s really a tragedy.
BRIAN RUSSELL, FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST: Way too hard on the cops. There`s no evidence that they were trying to harass her. It is a crime to have pot in California if you don`t have a medicinal prescription.
TERRELL: Who is this guy? Do you work for the cops? There`s no judgment case for this.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look, let me see the panel.
RUSSELL: ... have reason to believe that she was a danger to herself or others.
TERRELL: Oh, absolutely not.
RUSSELL: ... to get her home.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You had your opinion. Now let Leo Terrell speak.
TERRELL: This is a classic example of a person who is not a lawyer, who is not in law enforcement, who knows nothing about 5150. He is nothing more than a hack. You don`t know what you`re talking about.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on. Hold on.
Brian Russell, you are an attorney and a forensic psychologist. Make your point, 15 seconds, so that Leo can respond and the father of the missing girl can respond.
RUSSELL: If the cops had a reason to believe that she was a danger to herself or to others, they should not have released her, but we don`t have enough evidence to hang that on the cops.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK, hold on, hold on. You`ve made your point. Here`s the point. She, according to a valet and other people, said she was from Mars and said she had come there to avenge Michael Jackson`s death. If that`s not cuckoo for Coco Puffs I don`t know what is, all right?
BOND: It was the very reason that got her into jail was enough reason to keep her and watch her in some capacity.
LOU PALUMBO, DIRECTOR, ELITE INTELLIGENCE AND PROTECTION AGENCY: That`s not true.
RUSSELL: We don`t know how she behaved in custody.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Lou Palumbo.
PALUMBO: That`s not true. You know, fortunately we don`t incarcerate you for extended periods of time because of what they call theft of services or small quantities of a controlled substance.
The simple fact of this is -- remains. The police were not compelled to provide her transportation upon her release. What we`re really talking about is just common sense and decency.
PALUMBO: And what I would consider to be an error in judgment.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Let`s stop right there.
PALUMBO: No one`s good judgment let`s a young lady leave at 1:30 in the morning.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right. Exactly. You know what? If I have a party -- If I have a party and a young girl is acting cuckoo, and she wants to leave in the middle of the night, I`m going to say no, you`re not going to leave. You`re not going to leave.
TERRELL: Jane, a good point.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me do this, while we`re talking, I want to show a Google map we have all of the different places. Let`s roll the Google map as we continue this conversation.
You`ll see Geoffrey`s restaurant. You`ll see where she lives. You`ll see a possible sighting. You`ll see the sheriff`s station. I mean, this is a massive area that they have to search.
Debbie in California, your question or thought, ma`am?
CALLER: Well, I feel bad for the family. But my comment is, I believe it`s unfair to throw in Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan, anybody that`s famous because you know, they have bodyguards, limos.
TERRELL: What do you mean?
CALLER: They always have somebody there looking out for them. As an adult, you get arrested, the police do not -- they don`t play taxi cab. I mean, she should have made a phone call.
TERRELL: It`s another apologist. Listen...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on. Debbie, I got Debbie in California.
TERRELL: Look, there is...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK, we have to go to the tease. I`m going to take Leo Terrell and the father in a moment. More on this mystery in Malibu.
Also coming up, you`ve been asking so we`re going to deliver a special report on the Casey Anthony case.
But first TLC says, "Bye-bye, Jon." No more Jon. It`s just "Kate Plus 8." You will not believe the juicy details.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I ran upstairs and woke my husband up, and we came and looked over -- out the window. And my husband said, "Are you OK?"
And she said, "I didn`t know anyone was here. I`m just resting." We ran to another window to see if she had anyone else with her, and by then she was gone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s an anonymous witness who believes that she saw somebody who matches a description of Mitrice Richardson after Mitrice left the sheriff`s substation 12 days ago in the Malibu area when she disappeared.
So I`m going to go back now. We`re delighted to have with us the father of this beautiful young lady who`s missing, Michael Richardson.
Why would she just walk away? Why wouldn`t she accept the offer of the sheriff`s office to stay there overnight? And if she was walking, put yourself in her shoes. Why was she doing that? Where was she -- where did she think she was going, do you believe?
RICHARDSON (via phone): Well, the thing about my daughter, Jane, is she`s petrified of the dark. So I knew she wasn`t in her right state of mind.
And just for the people`s -- Leo, we don`t have to argue with these people. They -- they don`t know the facts. I`m a 17-year-old veteran in the hospital. Do you know how many officers have the decency to bring in a possible 5150 for a possible 72-hour hold for an assessment by case management?
It`s not their job to sit out there and say, "Oh, this person is crazy. This person is not. Take them to jail."
The same thing she went to jail for she should have stayed. All of the reasons that -- all of the reasons -- all the reasons show that my daughter should have stayed there. It was common sense.
TERRELL: You know what, Jane, in addition -- on.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on a second. Hold on a second. Michael, Mr. Richardson, did she have any history mental illness?
RICHARDSON: She has suffered from depression, I later found out recently.
TERRELL: And Jane, let me -- Jane, let me point out one other thing. And this is the thing. This is the point that none of your listeners know and your guests know. We have the tapes where there was information relating to the sheriff`s department about her state of mind. And that information should have triggered the sheriff`s department, but none of your guests know that. The forensic guy is just guessing.
We have the tape. I`ve listened to those tapes. She should have been placed on hold, but he doesn`t know that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on a second, Leo. Are you saying before she was released, somebody from the family called and told...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... the sheriff`s department she`s got problems?
TERRELL: Yes, yes. And so for that guy to sit there and -- no, let me finish. That forensic guy, he has no credibility. Because I`ve heard those tapes. And we`re going to release those tapes.
RUSSELL: Show us the tapes. Give them to CNN.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on, hold on.
RICHARDSON: Not only that, Jane...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Brian Russell. Brian Russell, the thought...
CALLER: Nine witnesses said my daughter was acting behavioral health. Nine witnesses. The police refuse to give us tapes. The restaurant refuse to give us tapes. I had to record them to get the information that I need. They were well aware of what was going on with Mitrice Richardson and failed to accept it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Let me ask a couple of questions. Leo, will you release the tapes tomorrow on our show?
TERRELL: Well, I`m going do this. I`m going to release those tapes. I`m going to talk it over with family. And I want Mr. Forensic Guy to make sure you`re listening so you can comment on it because you have no...
RICHARDSON: Mr. Terrell, can I say something, sir? Just so you know...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... hear those tapes. And I am going to give -- eenie meanie miney mo -- Curtis Sliwa the final word here.
SLIWA: Let me tell you something. We don`t know what the conversation was with this young lady. Once she was inside of jail, I`m sure the cops were conversing with her. And they showed her a cell, as we were told, and she probably didn`t want to stay.
I`ve never wanted to stay in a cell, and I`ve been booked many times. You give me an opportunity to get out, and I`m out of there.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, guys, we`ll leave it right there. We`re going to bring this up tomorrow. Join us again tomorrow. Next, Casey Anthony.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Explosive new developments in the Casey Anthony. FBI documents claim a stain in Casey`s trunk appears to be in the silhouette of a child in the fetal position. Meanwhile was crucial evidence destroyed by the FBI? Has the prosecution sabotaged its own case?
Plus, outrage over a mind-boggling delay. It took seven hours perform a sobriety test on an NYPD officer accused of killing a pedestrian while drunk-driving behind the wheel. Was law enforcement trying to give this cop time to sober up before the test?
Tonight, a massive head-spinning document dump in the Caylee Anthony murder investigation and it`s potentially devastating evidence for the defense and the prosecution.
In the prosecution`s corner: an FBI e-mail referring to a haunting photo of a large stain on the trunk liner of Casey`s car. Conclusion, the FBI analyst says there appears to be, quote, the outline or silhouette of a child in the fetal position. That`s on the lining of the trunk.
Now that`s a real bombshell. This child`s outline dovetails with other incriminating trunk evidence we`ve known for months now, including the air samples showing decomposition and a hair belonging to Caylee Anthony.
And of course who can forget this?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CINDY ANTHONY, CASEY ANTHONY`S MOTHER: The babysitter took her a month ago, that my daughter`s been looking for. 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)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But at the same time, the new documents exposed what could be a colossal blunder by crime scene investigators.
Get this, people -- when dusting for fingerprints they apparently destroyed residue from the heart-shaped sticker found on the duct tape stretched across little Caylee`s mouth. That was a crucial piece of evidence. How did that happen?
Compounding issues related to the tape, female DNA was found on it and it did not belong to Casey or Caylee. Turns out it matched the DNA of one of the lab techies.
Plus a close examination of crime lab reports by ISSUES has turned up even more material that`s potentially damaging to the prosecution. Was there a mystery person, not Casey, not Caylee and not the FBI tech who left hair and DNA at the crime scene?
Straight out to my fantastic expert panel: Jayne Weintraub, criminal defense attorney; Drew Findling, Atlanta criminal defense attorney; Steve Rogers, detective-lieutenant from the Nutley Police New Jersey Department and former member of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force -- boy, that`s a mouthful; Curtis Sliwa, founder, Guardian Angels; and Stacey Honowitz, Florida prosecutor.
Stacey, boy this outline of a child in the fetal position; this is really, really amazing evidence, if it`s true. Have you ever heard of evidence like this, an outline from a mystery stain? It kind of reminds me of those people who see religious figures you know in the corner of a ceiling, and they`re convinced that it`s a religious figure taken turns out it`s cobwebs.
STACEY HONOWITZ, FLORIDA PROSECUTOR: Well, you know, I mean this is really big. And finally, Jane, I can tell you when you say bombshell this really could be a major bombshell not that anything that you have said is not true but I`m saying this is exciting evidence. That`s the only thing that I can say.
I mean if in fact it`s true and someone has seen the outline or does believe it`s an outline it will be challenged if it`s admissible in court but certainly it`s very interesting new evidence to bring to the forefront.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes but there`s so much weird stuff about this.
Ok, let`s talk about the stain, allegedly found in the trunk liner of Casey`s car. An FBI analyst interpretation was that it was possibly resembled an image of the child in the fetal position. According to the documents it was not caused by biological liquid, like blood or fluid decomposition. No DNA was found on the stain and plus not everybody at the FBI bought into this analyst interpretation.
He said, quote, "Others can draw their own conclusions about that," end quote.
So, Jayne Weintraub, how can we be sure it`s a stain when there`s no DNA.
JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, number one you can`t be. Number two, I guess you look at the pattern of the police conduct in this case or the evidence-gathering skills. Oh, sorry you cannot look to that for it.
You know what, Jane, this case is abominable. Every piece of evidence that I`ve reviewed in the discovery from today excludes or exculpates Casey Anthony and it`s a shame.
Specimens that were collected November 18th of 2008, they`re just releasing today? What took them over a year? This is absurd. There is no decomposing hair that matches Casey or Caylee Anthony. There is no hair from duct tape found...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, they have already found, wait a second Jayne. They already found that in the trunk a long time ago. They found that hair with signs of decomposition and it has to be one the Anthonys.
WEINTRAUB: That`s what they did say, one of the Anthony`s. But now we know it excludes the defendant.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, an Anthony that`s dead.
WEINTRAUB: The person that`s charged with the murder that`s not who is decomposing here and the DNA`s not there and we also know that it wasn`t Caylee`s DNA. So if it`s a mom or grandmother`s hair from a hairbrush we know it`s not defendant or the baby`s.
That`s number one. Number two, we know...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what? Let me just say this, let me just say this, we`re talking a lot of stuff that the viewers at home may not really be clear about because we`re talking about all of this different DNA evidence. So you`ve got...
WEINTRAUB: There`s no physical evidence.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... the outline -- hold on -- you`ve got the outline a child in the fetal position. That`s a plus for the prosecution.
Let`s talk about a couple of things that could be a plus...
WEINTRAUB: Where`s the picture of it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... for the defense.
I don`t know. Well, a good question.
Curtis Sliwa, if they found this outline, why not put it in the discovery so we could all see the picture of the outline.
CURTIS SLIWA, FOUNDER, GUARDIAN ANGELS: I don`t know, but Jane, you yourself said it could like stigmata -- an image that we`d like to be the child but isn`t the child. Remember, there are 8,000 pages of discovery and I`m sure once the trial gets under way a lot of the evidence is going to be tossed or challenged by the defense.
But 8,000 pages of discovery, I would have to say, there`s a lot of stuff there that`s going to be used in this case that the defense is going to find very, very difficult to defend.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Drew Findling, why not show the outline? If this bombshell outline of a child in the fetal position in the trunk where they smelled decomposition, where the mom screams the mom of Casey, "It smells like a dead body in the damn car." Why not show us the outline in the discovery dump?
DREW FINDLING, ATLANTA CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, for the simple reason. It`s so coincidental that we hear about this shape of this body, but that somebody`s finally noticed and we`re hearing at the same time more detailed kind of transitioning into the issue of the heart-shaped sticker.
We`ve heard this bombshell about the heart-shaped sticker and now we`re finding out that it was only one person in Quantico, one person that ever saw that. And in fact that was two days -- that was two days before trace evidence people -- excuse me, two days after trace evidence people disclosed they never saw anything like that.
So now we don`t even know whether heart sticker ever took place. And remember, this is not simply a murder case anymore, it`s a death penalty case.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I wonder if there`s a photograph of it, you know?
FINDLING: There is none. They`ve revealed there is no photograph of it.
HONOWITZ: They said there is none -- they said that one person said there`s not a photograph by the FBI but there should be from somebody.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`ve been talking about this outline of this heart- shaped sticker on the duct tape for months. Nobody just took their little iPhone and took a picture of it.
FINDLING: Jane, remember, it`s Quantico that said they never took a picture of it. Two days before that, the trace evidence unit...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What are we looking at right here?
FINDLING: The trace evidence unit said they did take photographs. But they never saw any evidence of a heart-shaped sticker. So I think the conclusion in a death penalty case is it doesn`t exist and it never existed.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, well, this is...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jane...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I feel like somebody popped something that`s mood of altering because this is craziness.
Based on a careful analysis of today`s document dump, there are some pretty strong pieces of evidence that some say could help Casey`s defense.
Here are a couple: any and all traces left of residue left by in heart-shaped sticker that was seen by an FBI fingerprinting examiner on the duct tape wrapped around Caylee`s head, obliterated during fingerprint test. It happened while the examiner was dusting for prints. She apparently dusted away the evidence and didn`t take a picture. This is what we`ve been discussing. Now, don`t forget about the female lab tech who somehow shed her DNA onto the duct tape.
Meantime, FBI lab documents also indicate that a hair not belonging to either Casey or Caylee was found on evidence collection paper used at the crime scene to recover the duct tape. Plus, it appears the FBI has documented a partial DNA profile found on the duct tape at the crime scene and it`s not Casey`s, it`s not Caylee`s, it`s not the lab technician`s.
The question is, who is this mystery person? Steve Rogers, they found this duct tape in the woods. It could be anybody.
STEVE ROGERS, DETECTIVE-LIEUTENANT, NUTLEY POLICE NEW JERSEY DEPARTMENT: Well, exactly right. And, Jane, it would be inconceivable for investigators not to photograph any of the evidence that they`re examining. So with regard to images, et cetera, it`s either an image or it`s not. But I could tell you this, with the technology we have today we could confirm whether that was an actual outline of a fetus or not.
And regarding the duct tape you`re absolutely right. It could be anyone`s. But you have to keep in mind that everything is photographed from the initial -- from the second that the investigation begins because if you lose it, if it gets corrupted at least you have a photograph.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jayne Weintraub, when are we going to see this outline if it exists, do you think?
WEINTRAUB: I don`t think that you`re going see it. I don`t think it exists. I think that it`s a figment of someone`s imagination just like the heart-shaped sticker where there`s no adhesion right now on the duct tape.
It`s nice for them to say, even to cover to say, it was destroyed in fingerprints.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Got to leave it right there.
HONOWITZ: I don`t understand that Jane. We feel like we`re entitled to see everything that`s given between the prosecution and the defense.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, then show us the photos. Ok, we have to go. Thank you, fantastic panel.
Coming up, breaking news on DJ AM, Adam Goldstein`s sudden death, what the medical examiner says killed him.
Then, an innocent woman dead: will a New York cop who`s allegedly drunk behind the wheel escape punishment because it took seven hours to draw his blood? 1-877-JVM-SAYS.
When Johnny Carson said good-bye to "The Tonight Show" you know who his last guest was? Bette Midler. Guess what tonight? Bette Midler, the very first guest on the new HLN program, "THE JOY BEHAR SHOW."
Be sure to be there. Joy welcomes the one and only Bette Midler tonight. "THE JOY BEHAR SHOW" premieres at 9:00 p.m. Eastern tonight on HLN. You`ve got see it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Could a New York cop accused of boozing it up getting behind the wheel and killing an innocent woman get off the hook? How his last-minute tactics may have helped him.
But first, "Top of the Block" tonight.
Jon Gosselin gets 86`d by TLC. The reality show that made him famous will simply be called "Kate plus 8." Ouch. Are Jon`s 15 minutes of fame nearly over?
Since the couple announced their divorce, Jon has been living the high-life going to celebrity soirees and dating college-aged girls. What about the mother of his eight kids?
Jon didn`t hold back on ABC`s "Primetime."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON GOSSELIN, "JON & KATE PLUS 8": I don`t trust her anymore. I was abused.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What does that mean? Your being abused.
GOSSELIN: I was verbally abused. I was beaten down. She separated me from my family, my mom and my brothers. They say to me, "It`s so good to have the real Jon back."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. Strong words. But now it appears Jon Gosselin may have had a change of heart. "In Touch Weekly" reporting he`s trying to put the brakes on his divorce. Maybe he realized without "Kate plus 8," Jon isn`t so great.
Straight to Amy Palmer, senior editor at "In Touch Weekly:" Amy, dare we ask what is the very latest with this kooky clan?
AMY PALMER, SENIOR EDITOR, IN TOUCH WEEKLY: The very latest is that Jon wants to put a 90-day hold on his divorce proceedings so that he and Kate can work on their co-parenting skills and open up the lines of communication.
Now it seems to me that Jon has been criticizing Kate in the media. He`s just been absolutely disrespectful to her and the family. So it`s very interesting to see how Kate`s going to react to this.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, and it`s sort of timing is a little odd. You despise Kate one minute and all of a sudden we`re going to cancel you from the show and suddenly he wants to reconcile. I mean, do the math, right?
PALMER: Yes, I mean the guy`s trying to save his image. There`s no doubt he`s trying to spin this to his advantage. He knows that the public sides with Kate.
Kate is all over the place. She was on "The View." She`s just talking about having her own talk show. She`s really the star now and, look, we don`t even need Jon in "Jon & Kate plus 8." We`re fine with "Kate plus 8." So he`s only doing a spin control here.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s mean. He`s already done his work, he can leave now. Oh boy, that hurts.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: A record 10.5 million people tuned into to see the Gosselin`s announce their separation. But then the show`s rating -- this is very interesting -- plummeted when the couple started to film separately. Viewers want the drama. They want the bickering, like this stuff.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KATE GOSSELIN, "JON & KATE PLUS 8": White sandals.
J. GOSSELIN: No. I`m saying flip-flops. Just let them wear what they want to wear so I don`t have to hear it all day.
K. GOSSELIN: What, we lose the shoes and then they have nothing to wear?
J. GOSSELIN: Lose their shoes.
K. GOSSELIN: I have enough to keep track of. This is what I`m saying. Stand with me or stand against me.
J. GOSSELIN: I`ll talk in here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Amy, without Jon who is she going to argue with?
PALMER: You know what, I don`t know, but it`s going to be quite interesting to see who takes his place. Wouldn`t it be great to see who Kate actually ends up dating and bringing into this crazy world?
I think that TLC definitely is great in saying let`s focus on Kate and we don`t need Jon. Let him go do whatever he`s going to do.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I just love the bickering. That was the only thing that I really liked about the show so I hope she gets a very obnoxious boyfriend and they can argue some more.
Thank you so much, Amy. We`ll be back when we see what happens with this show. Appreciate it.
PALMER: Thanks, Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: An outrageous twist in the case against the cop who killed a woman while allegedly driving drunk. Could he get away with it because other cops dragged their feet? New reports claim NYPD Officer Andrew Kelly refused to take a breathalyzer test at the scene. It then allegedly took law enforcement more than seven hours before they finally drew the officer`s blood.
When the officer smashed his car into Veronique Valnor (ph), killing her, he allegedly had been drinking for hours. "The New York Daily News" reports that as his victim lay dying, Kelly refused to cooperate for a breathalyzer test. Shouting, "I`m not going to let that happen. You will have to tie me down."
Yesterday here on issues I predicted that something was fishy when we could not find out the officer`s blood-alcohol level. Listen. This was just yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s interesting that we do not have anywhere in published reports today his blood-alcohol level which we usually would have the day after in a story like this.
As a cop he knows how to play the game. He knows that he doesn`t have to take that breathalyzer test at the scene. It`s possible that if time passes, your alcohol level can go down because I`ve done stories on it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We said it first -- there`s Kelly decked out in his Yankee gear. "The New York Daily News" reports he went to the Yankee game and then went bar hopping allegedly downing at least eight drinks before the crash.
So why the seven-hour delay to draw his blood? Is this a case of cops helping out their buddy? When his blood was finally drawn, could his blood-alcohol level had dropped by that point so low that they will now not be able to prove that he was drunk.
Plus, where`s Officer Kelly`s mug shot? We called the NYPD looking for it and they say, we don`t release mug shots. What? Hello, read the papers, people. Mug shots are everywhere. They`re public record. When we told them that, they said no, they`re not.
What the heck is going on here?
Straight out to my fabulous expert panel: Curtis Sliwa, Guardian Angel. Is this case being handled differently because Kelly is a cop? Is this the so-called blue wall of silence?
SLIWA: You know, that`s why when I met you, you were such a good gumshoe reporter in New York City and then in L.A. You smelled this one out. You go, girl. You were right on this. And you`re right...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s all I have to say. I was.
SLIWA: This cop was being sweated down. And you know what happens. Sweated down means they`re drinking Starbucks coffee like there`s no tomorrow, going up and down trying to sweat it out.
5:00 in the morning they were going to take the blood. The doctor was told don`t take the blood. They didn`t take the blood till 8:00. So you`re absolutely correct. It was tricknology (ph) right here.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Everybody stay right there.
The woman you`re looking at dead. We`re going to have more on the alleged boozy cop after the break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REGINE MAZILE, FRIEND OF VICTIM: The car was coming, and they`re like, "Veronica, come back across the street." And I guess as she turned around -- well, she tried to turn around -- the car hit her on the right side. They said that the car hit her so hard that she almost hit the traffic light.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s one of Veronique Valnor`s friends who watched her get run over allegedly by an NYPD officer who, cops say, was drunk behind the wheel. But how are they going to prove it? They didn`t take his blood for seven hours and 20 minutes.
Let`s look at the time line: 12:40 a.m. this cop allegedly hits and kills Veronique Valnor. He refuses a breathalyzer. It`s not until 2:00 a.m. that the Brooklyn D.A. gets wind of this. It takes until 5:30 a.m. to wake up a judge and get a warrant for a blood alcohol test. At 5:52 the cop gets to the hospital, refuses again to give blood.
Doctors don`t know they no longer need permission. So they wait. It takes until 8:00 a.m. Seven hours and 20 minutes to get this guy`s blood. His blood alcohol content was dropping every minute.
Stacey Honowitz, you`re the prosecutor. Why did they let this happen?
HONOWITZ: I mean, I`m a prosecutor, but I couldn`t tell you what happened in this case. But you know, Jane, it`s not always just the blood alcohol level that allows you to prove drunk driving. You really need to see the -- this is why. Because...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Why did they wait seven hours?
HONOWITZ: I don`t know what was written in the police report. But certainly, if they`re going to test for drunk driving, there`s other issues besides blood alcohol. You`re right. It was probably on its way down. I don`t know why it took so long, especially if there was a warrant in this case.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Steve Rogers.
HONOWITZ: But there`s other things to look at.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I will say this. I`m a recovering alcoholic with 14 years of sobriety. And that means that I know, I have like drunk, I can tell when somebody`s got -- I`ve heard a lot of stories over the years. I`ve heard that if you get pulled over you stall, you don`t take the breathalyzer. And you wait as long as you can, eating cookies or anything you can eat to lower your blood alcohol level.
HONOWITZ: It`s not a breathalyzer...
ROGERS: Jane, you mentioned something...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on. Stacey, go ahead.
HONOWITZ: There`s an odor of alcohol. Is there slurred speech? Are there bloodshot eyes? Are there other test that`s are given? It`s not just a matter of do we run and get a breathalyzer because plenty of people refuse and still get convicted for DUI.
ROGERS: This is also a story on what went on here. Look, as a professional law enforcement officer I`m outraged. This is inexcusable on the part of these officers.
And Jane, you mentioned something very interesting opening up. Is this the blue wall of silence? Police officers watching your show need to learn something, that that blue wall, if in fact is the case here, comes crushing down on the heads of officers who compromise their oath of office. This...
HONOWITZ: You know, you`re all assuming something.
ROGERS: ... investigation is inexcusable on its face. This is inexcusable. You don`t wait seven hours to get a blood alcohol content level. They could have taken him to the hospital. They didn`t need a warrant. They had probable cause. Blood test, bingo, there`s your blood alcohol content.
HONOWITZ: The doctor didn`t know it. It`s not just the cops Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Stacey, you know, generally I agree with you. But the fact is, yes, you can`t -- a juror can`t smell alcohol because they weren`t there when the accident occurred. The one thing they can look at is at a blood alcohol level. It tells the whole story.
What about that wrong-way driver? The blood alcohol level was the thing. Because the husband`s saying no, she wasn`t drunk.
HONOWITZ: Jane, you`re 100 percent right. The blood alcohol level does enhance the case and makes it easier to prove. But there are several cases where someone refuses the breathalyzer and doesn`t give blood...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Got to go. We`ll do it again tomorrow.
Remember, click on cnn.com/jane. Preorder your copy of my recovery memoir, "I Want." It will help you get sober if you want.
And also don`t forget the debut of "THE JOY BEHAR SHOW" is tonight right after "Nancy Grace."