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ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Court Documents Reveal More on Shaniya Davis Murder; Aid Distribution Flawed in Haiti

Aired February 3, 2010 - 19:00:00   ET

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


(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, inside the hell of human sex trafficking. A beautiful little girl sold into a world of prostitution, Child pornography and murder. Disturbing new details in the death of 5-year-old Shaniya Davis. Never-before-seen documents reveal her accused murderer had child porn on his cell phone. Did Shaniya`s mom sell this cute little girl into this hell?

Plus, failure in Haiti. Money, food, aid, flooding into the country. But is it reaching the people who need it? Tonight we`ll talk to an American rescue worker on the ground in Haiti. He was a contestant on Oprah`s Big Give. Now he`s furious, claiming people are dying around him because of bureaucratic disorganization.

Also, McKenzie Phillips changes her tune. The former child star dropped a bomb in her recent book, claiming she had consensual sex with her father. Now she`s changing her story, saying the sex was not consensual. So what really happened? We`ll go inside the mind of an incest survivor. And we`ll talk to Joy Behar about her exclusive interview with McKenzie.

Plus Mel Gibson loses his cool again, lashing out at a reporter on live TV. So what question got him all fired up? Tonight we`ll talk to a reporter who`s been bullied by Mad Max himself.

ISSUES starts now.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, shocking and horrifying new details are emerging in the kidnapping, rape and murder of 5-year-old Shaniya Davis. This is just disgusting, revolting stuff. We are talking child porn on the suspect`s cell phone.

Just unsealed court documents indicate precious little Shaniya was raped and murdered on the same day she went missing from her home in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

Cops say Shaniya`s mother, Antoinette Davis, did the unthinkable, allegedly prostituting her own daughter, her own 5-year-old daughter, to her friend -- and I`m using that term loosely -- Mario McNeill. Cops say she knew he was going to bring Shaniya to a motel. Cops say that very same day, Antoinette Davis called 911, and she lied.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANTOINETTE DAVIS, MOTHER OF SHANIYA: I woke up this morning, and my daughter was not in the house. I don`t know if she walked out or I don`t know what`s going on, but she`s not here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Liar.

Surveillance cameras caught McNeill red-handed, carrying this helpless child inside the motel. Look at this poor, defenseless little girl, innocently hanging onto the shoulder of somebody she thought was a family friend. How could she possibly know that minutes later she would be raped and later murdered?

Search warrants say they stayed at the motel for about 90 minutes, 90 minutes of hell, undoubted. While friends, family, and police searched in vain for little Shaniya for days, pleading for her safe return, she was already dead. Found six days later, her body in a ditch. The cause of death? Asphyxiation. That means strangled.

We`re hearing that a detective found child porn on suspect McNeill`s cell phone, that guy right there. Can they determine if Shaniya is in the pictures, or could there be other victims pictured on this guy`s cell phone?

I`m taking your calls on this. Call me, 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1- 877-586-7297. How do we stop this from ever happening again to another child?

Straight out to my fantastic expert panel: criminal defense attorney and former Jackson family attorney, Brian Oxman.

Great to see you, Brian.

BRIAN OXMAN, FORMER JACKSON FAMILY ATTORNEY: Good to see you, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Psychotherapist and Care.com contributor Robi Ludwig; Judge Greg Mathis, from "The Judge Mathis Show." But we begin with investigative reporter Michelle Sigona from MichelleSigona.com. She has been digging up information on this case.

Michelle, what is the very latest?

MICHELLE SIGONA, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER: On the very latest, Jane, is on search warrant documents. I do have them in my hand right now. I have read through them, and the information inside of them really helps to paint a clear picture.

A lot of questions are answered, some things that we did not know early on. And as you mentioned, those pictures, I`ll just read this very small portion to you from these documents.

It says that -- that the detective observed photographs of sexually- explicit natural and some photographs appeared to be that of female juvenile under the age of 10. So we do not know at this time if this is, in fact, Shaniya Davis. But I can tell you that investigators do think that it is a black female that was found on his cell phone. Whether there are other victims or not, that`s something to be determined.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let`s talk about rape/murder suspect, Mario McNeill. This guy has a rap sheet a mile long, including shooting several people, drug possession, and trying to run over a police officer. And now they have found child porn on his cell phone.

Cops were led to McNeill when Shaniya`s little brother described a man with dreadlocks at their house that he didn`t recognize.

McNeill was arrested after a motel employee called police about the surveillance video showing McNeill and Shaniya. Cops searched this guy`s car. They collected hair fiber and children`s clothing and a straw, a drinking straw.

All right. So let`s get back to the porn on the cell phone. Judge Mathis, cops say they cannot tell if any of the pictures feature little Shaniya. Only, as you just heard from Michelle Sigona, that there is a black female child under the age of 10. So if it`s not Shaniya, isn`t there a chance that there are other victims out there?

JUDGE GREG MATHIS, "THE JUDGE MATHIS SHOW": Absolutely. And that`s my fear. My fear is this guy is a serial rapist and killer of children. And that`s a big concern, particularly if he has victimized more than one that we may not know of.

And so I believe, if anything, however, that`s enough circumstantial evidence for any jury to convict him of first-degree murder and of rape in the case of Shaniya Davis.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I know it`s enough. But it`s not just about convicting. You know, we have to move beyond crime and punishment at this point and try to understand, A, are there any other victims out there that need saving? And, B, how we can stop this from happening again.

Brian Oxman, what do investigators need to do to this cell phone to determine whether or not there are other victims out there? And that could be going through the cell-phone records. It could be any number of things, I presume.

OXMAN: The pixels on the cell phone, Jane, are usually pretty grainy, and we don`t get a very good picture. But what you can do is you can use the computerized program where they measure the eyes, the nose, the mouth, and they do a computerized image. And if those things match up, then indeed, you`ve got Shaniya on the cell phone. And I think the police will be pretty sure that it is Shaniya. If you`re a betting person here, boy, oh, boy, it sure looks that way.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I don`t know that for sure. Because, A, you could download videos onto a cell phone. So there`s a possibility that maybe this was something that he downloaded. There`s a possibility that he may have done this before. Because people who do this kind of thing do it over and over again, because they`re sick. OK?

OXMAN: Absolutely. Absolutely.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So I don`t think we can jump to the conclusion -- I hope that there are not other victims out there, but I don`t think we can jump to that conclusion. OK?

Antoinette Davis, the mom, and Mario McNeill both face human trafficking charges, among other things. Human trafficking. You know, we think it happens overseas, somewhere in Indonesia. It`s happening right here in the United States of America.

Just the other week, I attended a human trafficking conference, and protesters took to the streets in Portland, Oregon, to bring attention to this war on young women. Listen to this frightening statistic: 200,000 children are at high risk of sexual exploitation every year right here in the United States. And the root cause of a lot of it? Is drugs.

Robi Ludwig, psychotherapist, if there is one thing that can destroy a mother`s maternal instincts and allow a woman like this to allegedly sell her own precious 5-year-old daughter to a friend to settle a drug debt, which is what cops say was the reason she handed over her child, to settle a drug debt, OK? That is really the one thing that can destroy maternal instincts, I think, is drugs and alcohol.

ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Also -- well, also, we don`t know if this woman ever had maternal instincts. There is this idea, once you become a mother, that you have maternal instincts, and you know what to do. And that isn`t necessarily the case. And we don`t know what this mother`s history is.

Perhaps she was a victim of sexual abuse. I`m not saying it`s OK. But, you know, there are people who, given their history, can justify just about anything.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Michelle Sigona, we know her history involves drugs. We know there was a drug raid at the mother`s home last summer, and cops seized instruments used to allegedly manufacture drugs. What else do we know?

SIGONA: Well, we also know that Child Protective Services had also been involved with this particular case. That she was living inside that trailer at the time, unbeknownst to the manager of the property, who actually, Antoinette had applied to live in that community, and was denied. And was living in that trailer with her sister, sort of illegally, with a lot of children in a very small, confined space.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, when we come back, we`re going to find out what`s happening to the other children. More on little Shaniya`s hellish death.

We are taking your calls on this: 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586- 7297.

Plus, McKenzie Phillips changes her story. She is now denying having consensual sex with her famous father, the lead singer of the Mamas and the Papas. McKenzie wrote all about it in her book. So what changed? I will be joined by Joy Behar, who did an exclusive interview with McKenzie, and get the very latest.

But first, a beautiful little girl sold into a horrifying world of prostitution and child porn. How could anybody do this to this beautiful child?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CAREY LOCKHART-DAVIS, SHANIYA`S AUNT: I feel robbed. And I feel Shaniya was robbed. She was very intelligent. And she had such a wonderful, kind soul.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRADLEY LOCKHART, SHANIYA`S DAD: I`m very appalled and disgusted to that fact, that anybody can bring themselves to that. I have the faith of the Lord that we can cleanse ourselves and ask for forgiveness and forgive those who have done this disgusting act.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: A devastated father tries to cope with his daughter`s death.

Just-unsealed court documents say the man who raped and killed this beautiful child, little Shaniya, had child pornography on his cell phone. Is it little Shaniya, or are there other victims?

And little Shaniya, as we`re learning the details, the hellish details, was allegedly sold by her own mother to this guy to settle a drug debt. Phone lines lighting up, understandably.

Robin in North Carolina, your question or thought, ma`am.

CALLER: Yes -- yes, this case infuriates me. And my comment is, why have they not charged the mother with murder in this case?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think that`s an excellent question. Judge Greg Mathis, what do you say?

MATHIS: Well, should they take a close look at it, perhaps they could charge her with accessory before the fact. I don`t know if they could charge her with murder. Murder is demonstrating the intent to kill, or death as a result of a felony. Now I`m not sure it`s there in that case.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s my big issue tonight: the unthinkable evil of all of this. I simply cannot imagine how a mother could knowingly provide her own precious daughter to a man for the purposes of sex. A 5-year-old girl. It is incomprehensible evil to me.

The cops say that`s exactly what happened. And apparently, these things happen all of the time.

Part of the problem is that our defenses as a culture are down, precisely because it seems so incomprehensible. Such a horrific crime goes beyond our wildest imagination. We can`t wrap our minds around it.

We`re left defenseless, because we remain in denial about the depth of evil that people can descend to when they`re dealing with the powerless and the voiceless. Children, old people, even animals. Nobody can fight back. Those are the people who are most likely to be abused.

Let`s listen to little Shaniya`s devastated aunt.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LOCKHART-DAVIS: I feel robbed. And I feel Shaniya was robbed. She was very intelligent. And she had such a wonderful, kind soul.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Robi Ludwig, the family`s totally devastated. But the people most affected by evil are the ones who cannot fight back.

LUDWIG: Right.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Innocent, powerless children like little Shaniya Davis. So don`t we have to face the horror? You know, look in the mirror. Look at the horror.

LUDWIG: Yes, and I think you bring up a really good point, Jane, that, you know, we don`t really think that this is going on in our country. So our defenses are kind of down. We`re in denial. This doesn`t happen here.

And so raising our awareness to know that it does, in fact, happen, that certain parents will sell their children into prostitution, thinking that it`s a way to make money, or this is what was done to them, and it`s a perfectly acceptable way to make money.

We need to have organizations that protect these children, because they can`t protect themselves. And that is why they are targeted.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, well, there are plenty of organizations out there. I just attended this sex-trafficking conference in Portland, as I mentioned, and there are hundreds and hundreds and thousands of people trying to do something about it.

But it still doesn`t stop the sickness. You know, if the sickness is there, the sick person will act. And we have to get to the heart of this sickness that would make somebody do something like this.

I can`t -- I can`t imagine, Robi Ludwig, anybody wanting to have sex with a 5-year-old. Let`s cut to the chase of the horror here.

LUDWIG: Well, you know, with pedophilia, currently, there is no cure, so it`s just like any other sexual attraction. That`s the problem. You can`t really control who you`re attracted to.

And for pedophiles, they are attracted to people who are young. They`re not attracted to adults. Now, is that based on the fact that these kids are powerless and there is some appeal in that, they can feel powerful? Possibly so. But it`s a real problem we have, because currently, we don`t know how to fix it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, Roger, Ohio, your question or thought, sir.

CALLER: Hello?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hey, Roger. Question or thought, sir?

CALLER: Yes, who am I talking to?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`re talking to Jane Velez-Mitchell and you`re live on ISSUES, and we`re talking about this case, sir.

CALLER: OK. The girl -- the guy that killed the little girl, we should put him on the -- right away put him to sleep and the mother, convict them of murder. Because if the American people don`t see that we`re going to enforce this, then they`re going to get away with everything like this.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know, for once I agree. I waiver sometimes on the death penalty. But when I hear a crime like, this I say, no. This -- there has to be an extraordinary punishment for an extraordinary evil if they`re convicted. We don`t want to convict them -- they haven`t got a trial yet. Michelle Sigona, what -- what are they likely facing?

SIGONA: Well, at this point, Jane, as you mentioned, for murder charges, abduction charges, human trafficking charges, both of them right now are currently behind bars. And they`re waiting, as this legal process pans out for them.

I do want to mention, though, that the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has an awesome cyber tip line. So if you know someone out there who`s trading child pornography, you happen to see it somewhere on someone`s phone, you can see it flash on the Internet, you can call them and report it, and they will get someone out there to check it out immediately.

And that`s really where a lot of this starts. Because it starts with the fascination, which then in turn moves to raping children, and to actually taking them and to trading them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I read there`s something like 100,000 child porn sites on the Web. You know, there`s a lot of sick people out there.

Shaniya`s dad had custody of this child for the first four years of her life. But then Antoinette Davis, the mother, said, "Please, please, I want to be involved in the child`s life," and being a good-hearted person, he agreed.

Here he is on CBS`s "Early Show" just last year.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LOCKHART: Of course, you know, I had some reserves. However, you know, she had been trying. And I know she had been working for at least six months. And she had been trying to get her life back on track. And she said she had just recently got her own place. So I was wanting to give her a chance. She had asked if she could be a mother, and I felt that she was sincere in asking. And I figured to give her a chance.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Brian Oxman, the horror is that Shaniya`s mother is reportedly pregnant again as she sits behind bars. Your thoughts?

OXMAN: Boy, Jane, you know, as I listen to you talk about the child trafficking, and then we have a mother who is pregnant behind bars, what a human tragedy. Every minute, one to two children are sold into slavery worldwide, according to World Vision, into sex slavery. And then you have mothers who do this.

You said, you can`t imagine how a mother would do it. But Jane, it`s happening in epidemic proportions. And we need to do something.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And we`ve got to stop it. Thank you, fantastic panel.

Mad Max blows his top. We`ve seen it all before. Live TV. What is with Mel Gibson?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: In the "Spotlight" tonight, an outrageous situation in earthquake-ravaged Haiti. Mayhem in the streets as starving crowds clamor for food, water, and medical supplies. Violence erupts in the face of hunger and desperation. One Haitian relief worker called it, quote, "survival of the fittest."

Despite a massive outpouring of donations, some of the aid is just not making it to a lot of these poor people. Why? CNN`s Christiane Amanpour asked Haiti`s prime minister.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What is the biggest challenge right now? We`re still seeing that not enough food and water is getting to the people.

JEAN-MAX BELLERIVE, HAITIAN PRIME MINISTER: It`s still -- it`s still coordination. Because it`s not we don`t have enough food or water. It`s how we distribute it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: My very special guest saw this as a call to action. Eric Klein, who was featured on Oprah`s Big Give show, is the founder of Can-Do.org. He immediately mobilized and joins me live on the ground in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, for this exclusive interview.

Eric, welcome. What I`m hearing from you is simply horrifying. What exactly have you seen, vis-a-vis supplies not getting to the people during the time you have spent on the ground in Haiti?

ERIC KLEIN, FOUNDER, CAN-DO.ORG: Yes, I mean, look, a lot of what`s happening here is a lot of the supplies, I mean, a good portion of supplies is sitting at the airport.

What we`ve been seeing in a lot of the hospitals throughout Haiti, you know, all over the place, basically what`s happened is they`re actually giving -- amputating people`s, you know, their legs and they`re giving them aspirin as painkillers. And we have supplies that are sitting less than five miles away from these hospitals.

I mean, not to mention the food and the water and all the other supplies that are sitting there.

But the problem is, I mean, they should at least be able to get these supplies to the hospitals. Like I say, we`re talking five miles away. We have organizations, big organizations that have been around for over 129 years, some of these organizations. If they can`t get their act together by now on the ground, there`s something wrong. And I think the international community should start holding these NGOs accountable.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, hundreds of thousands of survivors are alive, but they are severely struggling due to starvation. Entire families forced to share a tiny piece of bread, but some stretch out a meal for more than a week. We`re looking at some new footage that you actually shot, and we`re going to take a look at it right here. It shows these endless crates of supplies sitting there, not getting to people who desperately need it.

You know, I`ve heard this from other people who have come back from Haiti. I`ve talked to them. They`ve said the same thing. And I saw a story on a show recently, where you actually see a truck deliver rice to people, and then people start pushing and shoving, because they`re starving. And the workers take the rice, put it back on the truck and drive away, saying that the people are pushing too much!

KLEIN: Right.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s madness. They`re starving. Of course they`re pushing.

KLEIN: Right. And the reason is, like I say, we`re 22 days into this now. The problem is, is that they have to set up proper ground logistics and assessment right when this thing hits.

You don`t wait and then think you`re going to roll into an area with enough supplies for 400 people to a crowd of 3,000 and think it`s going to be organized. You need to come in -- they should be mixing and talking to these groups, these communities, people that are in charge of these communities. And these people are very capable of setting up logistics and setting up distribution here on the ground.

The problem is, there`s no coordination. There`s no communication with the Haitian people. So I mean, of course it`s going to be unorganized if there`s no communication. You can`t just roll into a crowd and then start, you know, throwing supplies out to the people, and think it`s going to be, you know, organized.

And, again, what we`ve been doing, organizations are going out and setting up the assessment, setting up the ground logistics. We are partnering with the local, you know, water companies, the trucking companies, and setting things up with them. And the distribution we`ve been doing has been pretty flawless, because we have given them a heads-up beforehand.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`ve got to leave it there, but God bless you for your good work. We`re going to come back to you.

Moving on, McKenzie Phillips. Next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Mackenzie Phillips changes her tune. The former child star dropped a bomb in her recent book, claiming she had consensual sex with her famous father. Now she is changing her story, saying the sex was not consensual.

So what really happened? We`ll go inside the mind of an incest survivor. And we`ll talk to Joy Behar about her exclusive interview with Mackenzie.

Plus, Mel Gibson loses his cool again, lashing out at a reporter on live TV. So what question got him all fired up? Tonight, we`ll talk to a reporter who has been bullied by Mad Max himself.

Tonight: a jaw-dropping revelation in the Mackenzie Phillips incest scandal. She is now claiming that the sexual intercourse she claims to have had with her famous father was not consensual.

This scandal first exploded in September, when Mackenzie`s tell- all memoir, "High on Arrival" hit the bookstores. Mackenzie says this sick, sexual relationship with her famous dad, The Mamas and The Papas frontman, John Phillips, began when she was 17 years old. But she described it as consensual.

The first alleged incident was in a hotel room with her father. Both were in a drug-induced haze. Quote, "I woke up that night from a blackout to find myself having sex with my own father," end quote. She adds, her dad`s philosophy was, quote, "If sex happened and nobody protested it was consensual."

But she also added this chilling comment. Quote, "Your father is supposed to protect you, not bleep you."

Now, over four months after the book`s release, a shocking change of tune. Joy Behar interviewed her exclusively. And Mackenzie dropped this bombshell.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MACKENZIE PHILLIPS, AUTHOR, "HIGH ON ARRIVAL": I`d like to reframe my word consensual. I didn`t really -- as I was writing the book, I thought, this word -- it kept sitting wrong with me. But I used it for lack of a better word.

And since then, I`ve been schooled by thousands of insist survivors all across the world, that there really is no such thing as consensual incest, due to the inherent power a parent has over a child. And so I wouldn`t necessarily call it a consensual relationship at this time.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Joy Behar, kudos on your exclusive interview, and welcome to ISSUES.

JOY BEHAR, HLN HOST, "THE JOY BEHAR SHOW": You know there have been so many questions raised about Mackenzie`s credibility from day one. And now we`re learning long after she writes this book she has this revelation that the incest was not consensual.

Do you get the sense that this revelation was genuine or was this an attempt to keep her story in the news and perhaps sell more books?

BEHAR: Well, you know, she was in "Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew Pinsky" for a while, and I think she may have come to the realization that there is no such thing as consensual incest. There is always someone who is older and more powerful involved in that. So I believed her. I thought that she was pretty much telling the truth.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And what is so frustrating about this story, it`s really hard to know who to believe. She is very vigorously maintaining that this is true, but others don`t believe her, namely stepmom, Michelle Phillips, John`s x wife, who lashed out and implied Mackenzie was delusional.

I want to read you a quote. "Mackenzie has had a lot of mental illness. She`s had a needle stuck up her arm for 35 years. She was arrested for heroin and coke just recently. She did "Celebrity Rehab" and now she writes a book. The whole thing is timed." End quote.

Joy, you asked Mackenzie about these biting comments. Let`s listen to what she said.

BEHAR: Ok.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PHILLIPS: Michelle has known about this for many years. And the fact that she came out saying that I have mental illness and that I`m a liar really shocked me. I mean, I know she had vowed to do anything she could to discredit me which I think was in order to protect The Mamas and Papas brand. I never, ever expected her to turn on me in a personal way.

But the fact is, I love Michelle, and I`ve always had to try and, you know, sort of contort myself to understand what she is doing. And she has had to do the same for me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s really sad to see this very famous family -- we`ve loved their music so much -- just implode on the national stage.

BEHAR: Yes, well, Michelle is protecting the brand also, The Mamas and Papas brand. And she can`t probably face the fact that the man that she slept with also slept with his daughter. I mean, it`s too horrible to even think about so I can -- I guess that`s the reason that Michelle is questioning it. And if the girl is mentally ill and if she`s a druggy, you can lay both of those maladies at his door, because he was her father.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes and apparently he was making hash brownies with her at a very young age.

BEHAR: Right.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That kind of behavior today would get you locked up. But that was another era, to put it mildly.

BEHAR: I think that -- when anybody comes out and says that they`re the victims of incest a lot of people don`t believe them because it`s so horrible. The thought of it is so horrifying to people that they would prefer to just deny it and let it go away and say it`s not possibly true.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. And she says that that`s what has happened to her that she has been punished twice. Once by the actual incest and then punished again by people`s reaction.

But, of course, we have to consider the fact that drug addicts are great liars. I happen to know that for a fact. Did you get the sense that she was sober?

BEHAR: Oh, I thought she was pretty sober -- yes, sober when she spoke to me the other day, yes. Absolutely. She doesn`t seem crazy to me at all.

And you know, I think that she has real issues to deal with. That we showed some footage from "Celebrity Rehab" where she had a golf club, I think, and she was banging on a car and yelling at her father and doing kind of like a psycho drama, which was something that Dr. Drew Pinsky uses as a technique to get people through their rage and anger.

And I think that she has been around a few blocks now, and she has come out much better. I hope so. I hope it`s true.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Joy, that`s an anger workshop, and I`ve actually done it except with a tennis racket. . And it`s really, really powerful and it works. And you bang that tennis racket against a pillow, and, oh, it is a real therapy.

BEHAR: But what`s with the sports equipment? You know? She is using a golf...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you choose your favorite sport. I like tennis.

BEHAR: Elin was with the golf club, you with the tennis racket. I hate sports, so I would have to use my fists, I guess.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes or a hockey stick. How about that?

BEHAR: Oh, hockey, sure, a hockey stick.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, Mackenzie`s dad, of course, we all know died of heart failure at the age of 65 in 2001.

You asked Mackenzie about forgiving her father on his death bed and whether that has helped her heal. Let`s listen to what she said.

BEHAR: Ok.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PHILLIPS: I thought it would. I thought, you know, we finally -- I finally laid it out on the table and, you know, he died while I was holding his hand. I happened to be the only one of his children there for whatever reason.

And I thought I would be free. And I went on to relapse. And so I realized that there was some work that I had not done. And now I`ve been able to go and do that work. And you know, be clean.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Joy, whatever you have to say about her, she does seem tormented on some level. I mean, her pain is almost palpable. Something funky had to have happened to her. Did you get that sense?

BEHAR: Right. Something happened to the girl. There is absolutely no reason for anybody to come out and say such things if they didn`t happen.

I mean, she could have written a book just about her drug abuse. She is a big star from the sitcom days. She would have sold a book. She didn`t have to throw this in. But she did, because I think she means it. I think it was true.

And you know, the other thing that came out of the interview that was so interesting was that she felt that she was the chosen child, as she said. She was the only child who was at his death bed. She was chosen, so that sort of confusion adds to the dilemma.

The fact that, you know, she is sort of flattered in had a way, oh, daddy chooses me, but look at what he`s choosing me for. It`s so perverted and sick, you know? And so I believe that the girl really has had a hard time.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what struck me while I was reading research? The title of the band, The Mamas and the Papas...

BEHAR: The Mamas and the Papas. Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It just hit me. The Mamas and the Papas. I mean when you think about it, what would Freud say about naming your group The Mamas and the Papas and then singing all these romantic songs? I don`t want to get too psycho-babbly, but let`s give it a shot.

BEHAR: Yes, maybe it should have been The Papas and Their Daughters.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Exactly. Well, Joy, funny as always, and what a great interview you did. Thank you so much for your insights and for coming on ISSUES. Will you come back soon?

BEHAR: Any time, Jane, I`m in the building.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Of course you are.

All right. Thanks so much.

And Mel Gibson`s new movie has him back in the spotlight, but it sure didn`t take long for his Mad Max temper to come loose. We`re going to talk to a reporter next who had a confrontation with him.

And we`re taking your calls on what is up with Mel Gibson. 1-877- JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MEL GIBSON, ACTOR: That was almost four years ago, dude. I mean, I`ve moved on. I guess you haven`t.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, more bad behavior from Hollywood hothead Mel Gibson; fresh tirades straight from the superstar`s mouth. He is giving interviews to promote his new movie and he`s berating reporters along the way. Warner Brother`s "Edge of Darkness" is Mel`s first big blockbuster since his infamous 2006 DUI arrest and that anti-Semitic tirade.

Now Mel is getting angry when interviewers bring up that scandal; he`s lashing out at reporter after reporter. The latest incident happened on a Chicago station. Mel was caught on camera calling the reporter an A- hole.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thanks a lot for joining us, Mel, take care.

MEL GIBSON, ACTOR: Bye-bye. (EXPLETIVE DELETED).

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, ouch. Before that, Jim, he went off on Sam Rubin of KTLA. Take a look and listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SAM RUBIN, ENTERTAINMENT REPORTER, KTLA: Some people like people who are going to welcome you back and other people are going to be like you should never come back.

GIBSON: Why?

RUBIN: Because of what happened before.

GIBSON: What happened before?

RUBIN: The remarks that were attributed to you.

GIBSON: That were attributed to me.

RUBIN: Yes.

GIBSON: That I didn`t necessarily make.

RUBIN: Uh-huh.

GIBSON: Ok? But -- and I gather you have a dog in this fight.

RUBIN: Pardon me?

GIBSON: You have a dog in this fight or are you being impartial?

RUBIN: I`m trying -- you tell me -- I`m trying to be impartial. I guess...

GIBSON: Ok. Well, I`m back. And I hope it works out. And I hope people will graciously accept me back.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Did that comment have an anti-Semitic undertone. We`re going to get Sam Rubin`s take in just a moment.

But first, my question: did Mel have coffee in that cup? Mel says it`s all a big misunderstanding and he was calling the publicist an A- hole. We reached out to that poor guy and he says no comment.

Straight out to my fantastic expert panel. You can check him out this month, performing at the Stress Factory in New Jersey, I am delighted to welcome actor and comedian and fellow animal lover Hal Sparks to the show. And he was on the other end of a Mel outburst; KTLA`s one and only Sam Rubin joins me tonight.

Great to see you Sam.

What do you make of the fact that Mel did this again, after his incident with you?

RUBIN: Well, I tell you what. I think one thing that you come to understand about Mel Gibson is that this is a fellow who is deeply, deeply -- lack of a better phrase and it sounds overly dramatic -- I think truly tormented to a large degree.

And after our interview, he reached out to me privately, we met privately, he was exceptionally apologetic and he sort of characterizes himself as being terribly misunderstood. That these are -- he`s being sort of tarred by a brush that he says unfairly portrays him in a particular way.

And then basically, shortly after that, he quote, unquote, "steps in it again". So I think it`s one of those things where sometimes you`re your own worst enemy.

He did say that in fact, he wasn`t calling Dean Richards from Chicago, that was the tape you showed, that phrase, but rather the publicist who was standing off camera. I find that somewhat hard to believe.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes.

HAL SPARKS, ACTOR, COMEDIAN: Yes, it never happened.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let`s show you the full version of Mel`s latest outburst. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m just wondering if you think the public has moved on and will perceive you in the same light.

GIBSON: Well, I certainly hope so. You know it is a while back. And, you know, I`ve done all of the necessary mea culpas. So let`s move on, dude, come on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "Edge of Darkness" opens today. It`s good to see you back in the saddle and doing what you do best. Thanks a lot for joining us, Mel, take care.

GIBSON: Bye-bye. (EXPLETIVE DELETED)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I`m sorry. I get a chuckle out of it.

RUBIN: Yes.

SPARKS: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hal, what do you make of this? You`re a very well known actor, you`ve done this press tours, how can you go and be belligerent time after time?

SPARKS: Right. Yes this is -- there is no mistake or accident in any of this. This is Mel basically getting -- I think tired of having to answer for this again, because and like he said, he thinks he`s done all of the fair mea culpas in this. He has done plenty of them. He did the PR repair that his publicist told him to do and this should be washed under the carpet.

And this is the first project he`s had since then that the idea that he wouldn`t get these questions again is kind of absurd.

Here is the big mistake that he made. This is the big -- he actually asked both Sam and Dean, "What are you referring to?" When he knew full well what they were referring to which is, you know -- in legal circles, you know you never ask a question you don`t know the answer to. And in publicist circle you certainly don`t lead people in expressing to the public what your social and personal inequities might be. Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Go ahead.

RUBIN: I think that`s a great disconnect, I think he doesn`t -- he`s moved on and that certainly understandable. And I think to a large degree, much of the public has moved on. But at the same time, I don`t think he ever adequately addressed what happened.

So here`s what happens. All this time passes, you come back to the limelight; it`s completely to me natural...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes.

RUBIN: ...and understandable...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right but I...

RUBIN: ...that people say, "hey, this is great"...

SPARKS: Right.

RUBIN: ...yes go ahead, Hal.

SPARKS: Well, the reason is that because quite frankly, it wasn`t like he -- it was a drunk-driving accident, per se. It was a window into his character. This is the...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes.

SPARKS: ...this is why it keeps coming up. If he`d had a car accident that was because of his drinking and he`d been able to go into rehab and get it over with -- but when he started in with the anti-Semitic tirades, the tie that it had to the "Passion of the Christ" and the back story of that being anti-Semitic.

And then in his new movie in the trailer for it, one of the line is, "You`re either hanging in the wood or you`re pounding in the nail."

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I read that.

SPARKS: I`m serious. You know what I mean?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. He can`t get away from it...

SPARKS: And -- if there`s an element where this is going to keep coming up. And it -- like I said, it wouldn`t if it was just an occurrence. But it`s a window into who he is as a person that worried everyone.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, let me go to Dallas in Oklahoma who wants to weigh in on this. Dallas, your question or thought?

DALLAS IN OKLAHOMA: Yes, I just wanted to ask. What makes Mr. Gibson so special that he can go out and get belligerent and drunk with other folks and he can get a slap on the wrist? But when everybody else comments about him or goes partying with him, we can go to jail for six months to a year.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I don`t know if you`ve actually been partying with Mel Gibson, but I think it`s a very good question, Dallas from Oklahoma.

Sam, I`ve got to ask you, after your interview with Mel, you had such strong feelings. You felt the need to make a statement. Let`s listen to that from your KTLA newscast.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RUBIN: When I left that interview, I was mad at myself, first, to be honest, because I simply didn`t initially understand what he meant when he said, "Do you have a dog in this fight."

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What`s your interest in the fight?

RUBIN: And then a few seconds later when I did understand, I didn`t speak up and say that both as a Jew and as a human being I was really offended by what he said in 2006.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So Sam...

RUBIN: You know, Jane -- go ahead.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Go ahead -- well, I just wanted to ask you, do you think he -- there was an anti-Semitic undertone to what he said to you? Because he did say, do you have a dog in that fight? And, come on, your name is Sam Rubin. Do you think he was being anti-Semitic again?

RUBIN: You know what? To be very, very candid with you, we all use different idioms and different expressions, I was not familiar with that phrase. So when he said it to me initially and without sounding like a complete dope, I didn`t understand what he meant.

And then a few seconds later, when it occurred to me, oh, do you have a vested interest in this, I wasn`t trying to make it personal, and -- but when I left the interview, I felt badly. And I thought, you know what, I should have made it personal and should have said, you know what, what you did was offensive to me as a person, as a Jewish person. I didn`t do that I thought that was a little cowardly on my own part.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes -- go ahead.

SPARKS: I also think -- I think Sam, in many ways, it`s easy to get caught off guard in that kind of circumstance when that was his response. And I think it`s -- the chance that it was -- it really was, again, an anti-Semitic remark shows in the fact he felt the need to apologize so heavily.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I always find that when I feel bad about what something that was said to me, that maybe there`s something there underneath lurking under the surface and there are codes that people use. And it sounds like he might have been using a code.

And I too Sam, often realize that I`ve been insulted about a day later. And that`s when I get mad. Sometimes it takes me 24 hours.

All right. Everybody, hang in. We`re going to have more on this. More calls, more analysis of Mel Gibson`s mood swings. Is it really coffee in that coffee cup of his? Right after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you feel like you`re a different person, maybe a better person than you were five years ago, four years ago? I mean everything that we`ve read about you -- you`ve gone through a lot of ups and downs in the past few years.

GIBSON: Oh, yes, yes. Four or five years? It`s been -- hey, it`s a real roller coaster ride. You know, I think I`m the same person I always was except for people as they go. Time teaches and, you know, you learn as you go.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Seems a little defensive; Mel Gibson lashing out at reporters across the country. My big issue tonight: blame it on the alcohol?

Right after his 2006 DUI arrest Mel checked into rehab. He blamed all of his awful anti-Semitic comments on too much tequila.

Listen to this from ABC.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIBSON: Let me be real clear here, in sobriety, sitting here in front of you, national television, that I do not believe that Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world. That`s an outrageous drunken statement. It sounds horrible. And I`m ashamed of that. That came out of my mouth. That`s not who I am.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sam Rubin, when you interviewed him did he seem like a sober person to you?

RUBIN: You know what, Jane, I never thought for a second that he wasn`t completely sober, but he does seem very, very edgy. And I guess what he blames it on, and he said this to me, was that he was in the process of quitting smoking. Apparently he`s been in the process of quitting smoking for 20 years.

He does have this sort of jittery quality to him. Certainly I`m not an addiction specialist or anything of the sort, but I didn`t think he was drunk, no; by no means.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: William, New Jersey. Your question or thought.

WILLIAM, NEW JERSEY (via telephone): I just wanted to know, don`t you recognize alcoholic behavior? He`s a drunk. He`s an active drunk and through all these times when they interview him, he`s probably in a blackout.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s an interesting comment, and, of course, you know, we invite Mel Gibson to come on our show and tell his side of the story any time he likes; there`s always different sides and different perspectives.

But Hall, here`s the thing I don`t understand. And I`m a recovering alcoholic, myself and I know there`s sobriety and then there`s emotional sobriety. If I don`t take care of my recovery I get really squirrelly and nobody wants to be around me.

So he may not be working his program as they say. But couldn`t he as a savvy guy realize that he`s only reminding everybody of the scandal and giving this story legs?

SPARKS: Yes exactly. Well, the mechanics of how he`s conducting these interviews where he`s actually goosing people into telling him what they seem to have a problem with him about is a rehashing of it. And if you look at that apology, the body language and facial expressions say that you`re the problem. You`re the reason I have to answer to this. I shouldn`t have to say this at all.

And if you look actually at the language, "I don`t think that Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world," leaves room for them being responsible for some of the wars in the world. Maybe he ruled out the Falkland Island but the rest of it he might blame on them.

Then the other thing, you know, it just each time there`s so much wiggle room in what he`s saying and none of it deals with his character as a person.

There`s nothing in tequila that makes you a racist, ok? There`s things in tequila that will take away that part of your brain that tells you letting other people know you`re a racist might be bad for your life, but it never will -- it will never instigate that kind of thought form in your head. It`s not a hallucinogenic drug.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And they say in vino veritas -- in wine there is truth.

SPARKS: Right.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think a lot of this has to do with just the arrogance of movie stars and the fact that anybody calls them on anything.

Thank you, fabulous panel.

You`re watching ISSUES on HLN.

END