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ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL
Woman in Mercedes Leads Police on High-Speed Chase; Tiger Woods to Play in Masters Tournament
Aired March 16, 2010 - 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): Breaking news here on ISSUES tonight. You are watching a wild car chase. It is a Mercedes that police are chasing, being driven by a female driver. This is all going down in a suburb of Oklahoma City near Lake Thunderbird.
I`ve got to tell you, it`s been pretty crazy, because first of all, you don`t expect a silver Mercedes to be in a car chase. You`ve got to wonder, did she steal the car? Does this woman own the car? Is it a lease? We don`t know.
But there. Dramatic, what looks like a possible ending now. There you see police, five police vehicles have been following her. They got their guns trained on the driver`s side. Let`s see if this woman comes out of her own volition. Yes, she is. There you see, a blond woman getting down on the ground, spreading them and getting cuffed right now.
And this chase was really crazy. It was happening in a mountainous area. And at one point, it went off road and we thought oh, my gosh, what`s going to happen here? But then she got back on the road again. She`s driving this fancy silver Mercedes. Apparently, three of the wheels were on rims. And she just then drove right into this stop sign. How appropriate.
All right, Mike Brooks, you follow these all the time. Did the cops play it absolutely perfectly in this case?
MIKE BROOKS, CNN ANALYST (via phone): You know, Jane, I think they did. You know, when we started this out on "PRIME NEWS," they were on interstate. Then they went to a mountain road. Then she took a left and wound up in this kind of rural neighborhood, if you will, at a dead end street here.
And they did. Because she -- they wound up -- she had three flat tires. We don`t know if they`re from spike strips, but then there`s no reason to pull a pit maneuver. It`s too dangerous because of the mountain roads. But they went ahead and, like Mike Galanos and I were talking, just let it play out. Keep your distance. Make sure none of your people get hurt. Hope that she doesn`t run into anyone else on the road.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Mike Galanos, look at this.
BROOKS: ... and company. But we don`t know -- they went to pull her over, and she refused to pull over. So we don`t know if the car is stolen, if she has a warrant. But usually, if you don`t pull over, you`re wanted for something or you`re involved with something in the past.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Mike Galanos, this is an unlikely suspect, driving a silver Mercedes. And she appears to be not a teenage woman, but a woman well on in her years. And I`ve covered so many hundreds of these car chases, especially when I was a local reporter in California, which is the car chase central of the universe, but I haven`t seen a middle-aged woman in a Mercedes before.
MIKE GALANOS, HLN ANCHOR: No, this is a new one to myself as well, Jane. As we were watching this what we were -- we`re getting some new information. There were four kids playing up ahead. So thankfully, this ended. As we were following this, there`s a two-lane mountain road. Yes, it was going a little slower, but just two lanes. It could have really been tragic.
She made a turn onto the gravel road, and that really slowed things down to a crawl. Thankfully, it ended without incident. But to see her come popping out of there, a middle-aged woman in a pony tail, yes, I`m as baffled as you, Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I have to say that, when we`re watching these car chases -- there when she goes off road. We`re taking a look at that kind of crazy maneuver she did there, right before the end.
But Mike Brooks, when we watched these, a lot of people say, "Why don`t they just" -- our floor man, Bob, said, "Why don`t they just get in front of her?" And there`s a reason why they take this ultra cautious approach, isn`t there? Because over the years, when cops were a little more brazen, sometimes other people got injured in the process.
BROOKS: They did, Jane. And sometimes, and you know, sometimes they`ll say, well, why can`t you just box them in? Well, it`s easier said than done. Plus, you always have to go under the assumption that this person could be armed and dangerous. And you put that officer in front of that person, you`re putting that officer in the line of fire. So you don`t want to do that.
We just had a chase just the other day where -- where the woman was armed after the guy bailed out. So you never know about these, Jane. You have to take the utmost caution.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And just as we`re looking at this, even though this is happening in a, quote, unquote, rural area -- actually, it`s a suburb outside of Oklahoma City, but it`s got farm land. We saw in the wide shot, this is not an urban area, per se, but nevertheless, people can be killed.
You just saw a second ago, she almost sideswiped a car. And of course, there -- as Mike Galanos said, there were kids playing in the area. She was going at speeds of over 80 miles an hour at the height of this thing.
And what gets me, Mike, is that they are always caught. I have never seen a car chase in all the hundreds that I`ve covered where they are not caught. OK. They`re following them by the helicopter. They`re following them five or six vehicles, police vehicles behind them. They`re not going to get away.
BROOKS: Now, they`re not, Jane. And we`ve seen so many of them were the driver gets out. They think they`re going to make a run for it. They think they`re going to hide. We have a birds-eye view from the helicopter. They`re not going anywhere.
And thankfully, police officers are so well trained now that, thankfully, these do end without incident, as we saw.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look at that.
BROOKS: Yes. And really dicey maneuvers there. She thankfully ended up on that gravel road and things really slowed down, and it ended without incident.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t know if it`s a commercial for Mercedes or not. I mean, we know that this car is pretty -- it`s an advanced vehicle. I guess it`s the kind of vehicle you want to be in if you`re in a police chase.
But look, three of the tires were on the rims, and she ended up being caught. So it doesn`t matter if you`re driving the fanciest car, a Porsche. You are going to be caught. So I guess the lesson is, if you`re in trouble with the law or if a cop pulls you over, just pull over. We`ve all been pulled over. We`ve all been ticketed.
I would be very curious to find out why this woman fled from authorities in the first place. And we`re going to track down that information and bring it to you in this hour if we can find it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, Tiger Woods tees it up. The billion-dollar golfer announces his return to golf at the Masters. Less than a month ago, Tiger told the world he didn`t know when he was going to come back. So, was he telling the truth, or was this all part of his master plan? Tonight, the mistresses, the paparazzi, and the PGA tour. How will Tiger be treated in Augusta?
And a 12-year-old boy is accused of executing his dad`s pregnant girlfriend with a shotgun. So is this little boy a cold-blooded killer or is he too young to understand? Tonight, a national debate. Should he be tried as an adult? One doctor implied he`s incapable of redemption, but how can you say that about a 12-year-old child? Is there more to this story than meets the eye?
Plus a bizarre new twist in Charlie Sheen`s toxic marriage. The "Two and a Half Men" star pleads not guilty to threatening his wife during a knockdown, drag-out fight on Christmas. Not only did Charlie avoid jail, but now he has a sober coach following his every move. How the heck does that work?
ISSUES starts now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, Tiger Woods drops a bombshell. He`s ready to return to golf. Tiger says his comeback is set for next month at the Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia.
The announcement comes just 3-1/2 weeks after the billionaire golfer broke his silence at a tightly-controlled 13-minute press conference on February 19, as we all remember, when the disgraced married father of two finally came clean.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIGER WOODS, PROFESSIONAL GOLFER: I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated. What I did is not acceptable, and I am the only person to blame.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Given today`s announcement, we have to wonder whether Tiger was being completely up front with us when he said this less than a month ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOODS: I do plan to return to golf one day. I just don`t know when that day will be.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Really? No idea? Were you playing us, Tiger?
And another critical question I`m raising tonight: is Tiger Woods putting his sexual sobriety at risk? Tiger says he spent 45 days in rehab for his, quote, "issues." Published reports said he`d entered one of the nation`s top sex-addiction clinics after more than a dozen women claimed affairs with him.
So will the pressure to perform on the golf course and the glare of the white-hot media spotlight sabotage his early-stage recovery?
Meantime, what about Elin? No word on whether she will be at Augusta when Tiger takes his first official swing since their reported blow-up last Thanksgiving. Elin, of course, not at Tiger`s press conference, but she is with Tiger on the cover of today`s "New York Post." Why is she always wearing that Nike doo-rag? I don`t know about that.
The "Post" says this is the first photo of them together since Thanksgiving. Do you think they were caught by the paparazzi, or could this be another well-staged photo op?
I want to hear from you on all of this. Call me: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1- 877-586-7297.
Straight out to my fantastic panel: Vinnie Politan, host of "In Session" on HLN`s sister network, TruTV; Dr. Reef Karim, psychiatrist and addiction specialist and medical director of The Control Center; Kristina Wandzilak, interventionist and host of TLC`s "Addicted," which premieres tomorrow night; L.Z. Granderson, ESPN senior writer and columnist with ESPN.com; and Rafer Weigel, sports anchor on HLN`s "Morning Express."
Rafer, this head-spinning news. Is there any buzz about when Tiger actually really made the decision to come back?
RAFER WEIGEL, SPORTS ANCHOR, "MORNING EXPRESS": Well, Jane, you know what? People need to understand, and the Masters Tournament is an invitation-only tournament. Even if you`ve won in the past, technically you need to be invited to play in that tournament.
Now, last week, the news broke from the Associated Press that that was the tournament he was going to play. So this had to be in the works at least since last week.
And this is all about access, Jane. Let us be perfectly clear. The Masters is the most restrictive tournament of any tournament on the PGA tour. If you so much blink wrong, or ask a question they don`t like, they will yank your badge forever. And a lot of golfers are not happy about this. As a matter of fact...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, they can yank my badge all they want, because I ain`t going to be there. They`re not too friendly to women, are they? And apparently, there`s no women members.
WEIGEL: You remember Martha Burke as well as I. But yes, I`m going to be there and...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yank my badge, OK? Go ahead and yank it. I`ll still ask the tough questions.
WEIGEL: Well, I mean, and that`s the other thing, Jane. What`s going to happen? Because the mainstream media wants to ask questions about his personal life, as well. Why did it take you so long to come out and address this? But we want to know what`s going to happen if we ask those questions. There are some who actually think there`s going to be a list of media who ask questions that Tiger Woods doesn`t want to answer. The question is, will he even answer them or just say, "No questions. I`m not going to address it"?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And let me tell you, I`ve also heard there`s another list. There`s an enemies list of reporters who have asked tough questions or who have been critical of him, and I hear that they could be frozen out. That was speculation from, I believe, a "Sports Illustrated" reporter who was on HLN.
Now, I have to ask, was the public played when Tiger issued his recent vague mea culpa and said this? Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOODS: I do plan to return to golf one day. I just don`t know when that day will be. I don`t rule out that it will be this year. When I do return, I need to make my behavior more respectful of the game.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Vinnie Politan, fellow golfer Jesper Parnevik now says everybody expected him to do the Masters, so was he not telling the truth there?
VINNIE POLITAN, HOST, "IN SESSION": I don`t think he was telling the truth that day. And that`s the problem. You know, yes, he can go play golf, Jane. That`s what he does for a living, and I`m fine with that. The golf fans will be excited. They`ll have huge ratings.
But at the end of the day, and at the end of that press conference speech, whatever you want to call it. He asked everyone to find room in your heart to one day believe in me again. How can we believe in Tiger Woods when we don`t believe Tiger Woods?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree. It`s problem.
All right, we`re taking your calls on this. Again, 1-877-JVM-SAYS.
Plus, an 11-year-old allegedly shoots and kills his dad`s pregnant girlfriend. Should he be tried as an adult? There he is. There`s the child. One doctor is saying he can`t be rehabilitated. Oh, please. He`s 12 years old. He was 11 when he did it.
More on Tiger`s return to golf in just a moment. Shocking stuff.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOODS: Parents used to point to me as a role model for their kids. I owe all those families a special apology. I want to say to them that I am truly sorry.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOODS: I thought I could get away with whatever I wanted to. I felt that I had worked hard my entire life and deserved to enjoy all the temptations around me. I felt I was entitled. Thanks to money and fame, I didn`t have far -- I didn`t have to go far to find them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s my big issue. Is Tiger putting his sexual sobriety at risk by jump into this major tournament so soon? If he is, indeed, a sex addict, he`s in very, very early sobriety. Should he be putting himself in the white-hot spotlight?
Amy Winehouse, remember her? She was at the center of a similar debate. In 2008, she was in rehab for severe -- I mean severe -- drug addiction. But she got special treatment. She was allowed to leave rehab to perform via satellite from London on the Grammies. OK, getting special treatment sends addicts a terrible message, that they`re special. The rules don`t apply to them. Her performance was a hit, but guess what? She later slipped and began using drugs.
So, Dr. Reef Karim, if Tiger wins at the Masters, could that actually threaten his sobriety by making him feel totally bullet proof?
DR. REEF KARIM, ADDICTION SPECIALIST: Yes, he might win at the Masters but lose in his life. And that`s the bottom line. And it really depends on if he`s a sex addict. It still comes down to that. If he`s just an entitled guy, then he might be fine. But if he`s truly a sex addict -- and I treat sex addiction all the time at the control center.
Behavioral addictions and including sex addiction, they take longer to really care and change their lifestyle completely than chemical addiction. This is a complete lifestyle overhaul.
And if you`re going to do that and regulate the very core nature of who you are, you can`t do that in 30 days.
And when you talk about specialty care, I completely agree with you, Jane. Specialty care for celebrity is not just about checking into rehab. It`s about all of the aftercare work that you do when you get out of rehab.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. I want to talk about mental focus. L.V. Granderson, obviously, mental focus is the linchpin to mastering a game. And I want to know how is Tiger going to be able to ignore the fact that everybody knows all -- basically the details of his very sensational private life and his affairs with all these women.
And I want to read some quotes to you. "Amazing in bed," "freaky blank in bed"; "he likes blonds with big boobs." Tiger`s reported message to Jaime Grubbs, quote, "I will wear you out."
Yes, psychologically, how does he handle the fact that everybody knows this on the course?
L.Z. GRANDERSON, ESPN SENIOR WRITER: You know, fortunately, as you alluded to earlier, the Masters haven`t been very friendly to women, so maybe there won`t be a lot of women for him to see those things that he texted about.
But Tiger Woods didn`t win 14 majors by not having supreme focus. I don`t believe he`s going to have any problems at all staying focused because he`s at the Masters. You know, as one of the guests had mentioned earlier, the Masters, August is very controlled. He`s not going to get questions from TMZ or "People" magazine. He`s going to get very controlled, maybe even prescreened questions from some of the people who will be interviewing him.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But that`s not fair. I mean...
GRANDERSON: No, that`s not fair, but he`s a celebrity. He`s a celebrity. And so a lot of things that he does isn`t fair.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right, but Kristina, ten seconds, doesn`t that worsen his addiction? Treating him special?
KRISTINA WANDZILAK, TLC`S "ADDICTED": Absolutely. It`s the crux of treating high-profile families or individuals, is that they receive special treatment. It`s exactly what needs to be intervened on.
Tiger said that himself, that because of his power and his entitlement, he felt he could have whatever he wants. And that`s very thing, in my opinion, that needs to stop in order for him to save his own life.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Fantastic panel, stay right where you are. More on Tiger`s comeback in a moment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JESPER PARNEVIK, PROFESSIONAL GOLFER: Me and my wife (UNINTELLIGIBLE) hooking her up with him. And we probably thought he was a better guy than he is, then. And I would have to apologize to her and hope she uses a driver next time rather than a 3-iron, I would say.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger met his wife, Elin, through an introduction from that man, fellow golfer Jesper Parnevik, who blasted Tiger in the wake of the scandal.
Now Rafer Weigel, I hear that Tiger is a champion, obviously, the Masters. So that means he gets a special locker room for champions, and he doesn`t have to be with his other competitors who -- let`s face it -- could they resent him for stealing every last little bit of the spotlight?
WEIGEL: Yes, there`s no question, Jane, that they resent him. And yes, you`re absolutely right. The past winners get a separate locker room, so not only will he be insulated, to a degree from the media; he will even be secluded to a degree from the other golfers.
The golfers are very upset, the fact that he is taking one of the most prestigious tournaments in all of golf and making it all about his return, as opposed to doing another tournament first, get the circus out of the way. I mean, these guys are going to be -- are very unhappy about having to ask questions about Tiger Woods. Because that`s the first question we`re going to ask whenever Jim Furyk or Steve Stricker come off.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. He`s made -- those guys are irrelevant almost.
OK, Barbara, Ohio, your question or thought?
CALLER: I`m just calling to say I would no way support Tiger, especially going back for the first time to the Masters. He`s not making the Masters look any better. He`s certainly not being fair to his other golfers. It`s just another proof for him how selfish he really is. He`s not worried about anything but Tiger and that`s not fair. He`s not doing the game of golf any good. He...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I have to disagree with that, Barbara. I was with you up until then. But L.Z. Granderson, come on. He is the game of golf.
GRANDERSON: He is the game of golf.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And this is going -- the ratings on this is going to be apoplectically large.
GRANDERSON: Absolutely. My network, ESPN, has the first two -- first two days, because of the tee off. That`s going to be absolutely maddening. And then the next two, the final weekend goes to CBS. You can bet both networks think Tiger is doing golf a lot of good.
And I just want to just go back a little bit to something that was said earlier.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Quickly, because I`ve got to get -- yes.
GRANDERSON: Yes. You know, we`ve got to remember that Tiger Woods just cheated on his wife. He didn`t commit a crime. He cheated on his wife, and it really is between him and his wife, more so than anything else.
POLITAN: Yes, but he`s having everyone to believe in this guy again. He`s asking for the public to believe in him. That`s his words. He held the press conference. He got up there and said, "Hey, I want you folks at home to believe in me again."
GRANDERSON: There`s a difference. There`s a difference between criminalizing someone and...
POLITAN: It`s not criminalizing, but it`s calling him out.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: One at a time.
GRANDERSON: ... should not be criminalized.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Vinnie, your response to that?
POLITAN: I don`t think we`re criminalizing him. He`s asking something of the public. He`s asking for the public to believe in him again so that he can be the pitch man, so he can make hundreds of millions of dollars.
WEIGEL: He lied about his image. He lied about his image, Vinnie. You`re absolutely right. He sold us a bill of goods. Imagine if you`re drinking Diet Coke for two -- you know, so many years, thinking it was sugar free, and suddenly you look and you find out it`s filled with sugar and calories. Tiger Woods was a brand, a product. And it was a lie.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, people are not brands.
GRANDERSON: You know what?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And to me, that`s the cautionary tale. He is a metaphor for what`s wrong with our society. We turn people into commodities, and we create brands around them. And people are people. And people are human, and they make mistakes. So don`t put yourself out there as perfect, and then you won`t have to fall so far.
But I want to thank my fantastic panel. We have some breaking news, so it was a little bit shorter than usual, but you all got your word in there. Thank you.
Now, this kid allegedly killed his father`s pregnant girlfriend. Should he be tried as an adult?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: A 12-year-old boy is accused of executing his dad`s pregnant girlfriend with a shotgun. So is this little boy a cold-blooded killer or is he too young to understand? Tonight, a national debate: should he be tried as an adult?
Plus, a bizarre new twist in Charlie Sheen`s toxic marriage. The "Two-and-a-half Men" star pleads not guilty to threatening his wife during a knockdown, drag-out fight on Christmas. Not only did Charlie avoid jail, but now he has a sober coach following his every move. How the heck does that work?
A sick and twisted story is unraveling in Pennsylvania over a young boy who`s accused of executing his father`s 8-month-pregnant fiancee. Should this boy be charged as an adult and spend the rest of his life in prison?
Jordan Brown was only 11 years old when he allegedly aimed his shotgun at his future step-mom`s head. Prosecutors say he shot her and then got on the school bus like nothing had happened. The woman`s 4-year- old daughter found her.
And where did the gun come from? It was a Christmas present from Jordan`s dad so he could teach the boy how to hunt. If the boy committed this crime, let`s remember, his dad provided his own child with the murder weapon. Now the father has effectively lost his entire family.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS BROWN, JORDAN BROWN`S FATHER: What would you do? Would you turn your back on your own son because somebody else believes he`s guilty? Not me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: No dude. I would ask yourself some tough question, is what I would do. Like why did I give my 11-year-old son a gun and allow it to be available for him. Kenzie Houk was allegedly -- well, she was already the mother of two young girls and would have given birth to a baby boy had she lived. Her family wants the boy tried as an adult.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DEBORAH HOUK, KENZIE HOUK`S MOTHER: If it mean him going to prison for life? Like I said, he`s serving one life sentence; he took two lives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The motive? Prosecutors say the boy was jealous that he would have to give up his room for the baby that was on the way.
Jordan, who is now 12, has pleaded not guilty and the judge will soon make a ruling on whether he should be tried as an adult.
So at what age should a child be held responsible for his actions when we`re talking murder? We`re taking your calls on this. 1-877-JVM- SAYS, 1-877-586-7397.
Straight out to my fantastic panel: former federal prosecutor Fred Tecce; psychiatrist Dr. Janet Taylor; Sadie Gurman who is a reporter for the "Pittsburgh Post Gazette" joining us by phone. Sadie, what is the very latest?
SADIE GURMAN, REPORTER, "PITTSBURG POST GAZETTE: Say that one more time?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What is the very latest?
GURMAN: Well, the very latest is that a judge has to decide by April 1st whether or not to try Jordan as an adult or a juvenile. And attorneys on both sides are submitting briefs outlining their arguments for each.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Well, I`ve got to tell you, I have a real problem with this story and that is that Pennsylvania is an all or nothing state. If convicted as an adult, this little guy is going to spend the rest of his life in prison. If convicted as a juvenile he`s just going to go free at the age of 21.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JENNIFER KRANER, KENZIE HOUK`S SISTER: To put him way as a child and him be out at 21 is absurd. But we`re not the judge.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look, a psychiatrist for the prosecution says Jordan shows little hope for rehabilitation. Psychiatrist Dr. Taylor, how can you say that about a kid who was 11 when he allegedly committed this crime? Does an 11-year-old fully understand the difference between a video game where you shoot them up and the reality? I mean, I played with water guns when I was 11. I wasn`t given a real gun.
DR. JANET TAYLOR, PSYCHIATRIST: Well, I mean, certainly an 11-year- old knows the difference and understands death and that concept. But the issue is how can we say an 11-year-old is not capable of being rehabilitated? What does that say about our society and also the juvenile justice system?
The point of juvenile justice is to teach and help our kids, not throw them in for punishment. So I have a real problem with the fact that the psychiatrist said that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Fred Tecce -- I mean look, how is it that the prosecution -- a bunch of adults -- wants to send an 11-year-old away for the rest of their lives?
FRED TECCE, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: Well, it`s interesting, Jane. I mean this case is, as you say, just a brutal, brutal case. I mean, how as parents can we just kind of throw away a 12-year-old boy and say he`s never going to be able to be rehabilitated?
But I have to tell you, I put on my former prosecutor hat and I will tell you that is a horrific, horrific crime. This kid took a shotgun -- and we`ll talk about the father in a minute because I`m with you on that -- he took a shotgun, he covered it with a blanket to hide it as he came down the steps, evidencing consciousness of guilt, knowing what he was doing. He shot this woman, put the gun back, tried to dispose of the shell by throwing it in the woods and then gets on the bus and goes to school.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. It`s all allegedly but, you know what, he`s been watching crime shows.
My big issue tonight: the fact that this boy had possession of a gun and possession of ammo. Is his dad to blame? Dad gave him the gun for Christmas.
Now dad`s fiancee is dead and the baby is dead and the son is facing life in prison.
TECCE: Correct. And you know what Jane --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on a second.
TECCE: I`m sorry.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BROWN: Go to work, come home and lose everything. Kenzie, the baby and now Jordan is facing potential life in prison without the possibility of parole as an adult.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think most of you know that I`m an animal activist, I`m not into hunting. And Dr. Taylor, I believe when you teach a child to hunt, you teach a child to kill. You are sending a subliminal message, if not a verbal message that killing is ok.
They go and they kill a sentient being that has eyes, nose, heart and ears. The animal falls down -- if it`s lucky -- usually it runs away wounded and dies a slow death. But if it`s lucky, it falls down and you watch it die. Doesn`t that send a very dangerous subliminal message to an 11-year-old?
TAYLOR: Well, I think there are some people who responsibly teach their children to hunt. I think the bigger question is --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t. I don`t. Look what happened in this case.
TAYLOR: But Jane, I think what we don`t know how the father treated his son. We don`t know about his biological mother. Was she psychotic, was there history of substance abuse. There are so many factors that are not being said.
But I think the fact that he had a gun certainly with murder, availability of a weapon is key but how was this child raised? He wasn`t born bad; what happened to him?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what, it`s -- you give an 11-year-old a gun and ammo. They`re 11 years old.
TECCE: You know what?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And then you teach them how to kill and then you`re shocked oh, my god, I`m so shocked that they do it. Fred?
TECCE: Well, you know, Jane, I`ve got to tell you. When you put all those issues aside, I hear where you`re coming from. But the fact of the matter is from the law`s perspective, when a father allows an 11-year-old unfettered access to a shotgun and shells, that`s what we call gross negligence. It`s willfully wrong misconduct and quite frankly, it`s borderline criminal.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And nobody seems to be calling on him.
TECCE: Well, I just did. I just did.
I`ve got to tell you something, in Pennsylvania, guns and hunting are a big part of the culture here. That doesn`t make it right. But you know what, use some good judgment. Lock the stuff away. Don`t let a 12- year-old have unfettered access to this stuff.
TAYLOR: But there are --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now Fred, you just raised a very -- hold on a second. You raised an important issue. You talked about Pennsylvania and guns.
There`s another young man and I wrote about this in my first book, "Secrets can be Murder", serving life in prison in Pennsylvania for killing his girlfriend`s parents. He grew up in a house chockfull of guns.
TECCE: I know.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: David Ludwig was 18 at the time. His girlfriend Kara Borden was only 14. Her dad had forbidden them to be together. So Ludwig had basically confessed to the murders, he`s behind bars forever. Basically, he went to the house with a gun and he point blank shot the mother and father of his girlfriend.
Police later -- get this -- police later found 54 guns inside the house where David Ludwig grew up. Fifty-four guns. Ok?
TECCE: Jane, I`ve executed search warrants and found 105 guns in a guy`s apartment. So I hear where you`re coming from.
But the fact of the matter is that if you`re going to have children around, and if you want to be a gun owner, then that -- those rights carry with them responsibilities. And those guns need to be locked away where people can`t get them.
TAYLOR: But the other factor, but the other factor is parents do damage to their children without guns by using their words and their fists.
TECCE: I agree with that. And I`m with you on that. My point is that as a parent, particularly in this case with a 12-year-old boy, to have a shotgun and shells lying around is just gross negligence and quite frankly, criminal negligence.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Sadie, you`re the reporter at the "Pittsburgh Post Gazette", has this opened up any soul searching about this whole idea of teaching young kids to hunt?
GURMAN: Well, I think in, you know, in some of the testimony, there`s been a little bit of mention about that. And, you know, it`s -- like one of the experts said, it`s just something that people out here, I don`t think they think too much about it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, maybe they need to start thinking about it. And maybe the "Pittsburgh Post Gazette" needs to write an article and challenge this notion that you can give an 11-year-old a loaded weapon and not expect them to use it when he gets mad because they tell him he can`t live in his room anymore. He has to move out.
I`m not saying he`s blameless. He needs treatment. He needs psychiatric help but the dad I think really needs to look in the mirror.
TECCE: Oh, yes.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you fabulous panel.
Now, teen heartthrob Corey Haim laid to rest in Canada today. We`ll give you the latest on this tragic story.
Then Charlie Sheen back at it, back to work. But this time he`s got a sober coach watching his every move. What is that about? What`s going on with his domestic violence case?
Give me a call 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The very latest on the Charlie Sheen court case up next.
But first, "Top of the Block" tonight.
Check out this video, a routine traffic stop in Oklahoma City turns into a dangerous high-speed chase; this ended just minutes ago. It`s a silver Mercedes we`re talking about, recklessly driving, reaching speeds around 80 miles an hour. And guess what? It was a woman behind the wheel. Lucky for cops, some spike strips knocked out three of the tires. This woman driver was basically driving on three rims.
This chase lasted about a half an hour. Now, of course, it always ends the same way. They always get caught in the end. And when she was caught, there she is, she`s going right into that pole, boom. They got her out and she seemed to be calm. She`s a middle aged woman in a pony tail, which was very bizarre.
She`s now in custody. Let`s just let her get out of the car, because we should see what she looks like. What were you doing lady? What the heck was going on in your brain that you went on a high speed chase in your Mercedes? Thank God nobody was hurt.
All right, "Top of the Block, part two.
Rest in Peace, Corey Haim. Family members, close friends gathered in Toronto today to say their final good-byes to the 80s superstar. About 200 people attended Corey Haim`s funeral. Fans also stood outside the chapel to pay their respects. It`s so sad; Corey was just 38 years old. We won`t know exactly what caused his death until the toxicology report is released.
But it`s no secret, he really had battled drugs and addiction his entire life. I really hope his death can open our eyes to the dangers of prescription drug abuse. It`s a national crisis.
Tomorrow on ISSUES, we`re going to talk to another childhood star on this very same topic. The one and only Todd Bridges, you remember him, the star of "Different Strokes". He takes us inside his addiction to crack and his downward spiral and how he got out of it.
All right, that`s tomorrow. So check it out.
And that is tonight`s "Top of the Block".
Charlie Sheen, back to work on his hit sitcom, "Two and a Half Men" and get this -- he is reportedly planning on shooting his TV show by day and attending rehab at night. How convenient, that`s so convenient.
Sheen returned to work just one day after pleading not guilty to domestic violence charges stemming from a Christmas Day fight with his wife Brooke. The couple allegedly got into an alcohol-fueled argument and it turned violent pretty darn quick. Brooke made this terrified 911 call. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BROOKE MUELLER, CHARLIE SHEEN`S WIFE: My husband had me -- with a knife and I`m scared for my life and he threatened me.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ok, are you guys separated right now?
MUELLER: Yes, right now we have people that are separating us, but I have to file the report.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ok are there people there? Does he still have the knife?
MUELLER: Yes, he still does.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What`s your name?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And what`s your husband`s name?
MUELLER: It`s Charlie Sheen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Charlie denied attacking his wife with a knife, but he admitted they got into a slapping match. Brooke later tried to take it all back. RadarOnline reports "Two and a Half Men" will now be filmed without its usual live audience, at least this week. Shooting has been on hold for the last three weeks to accommodate Charlie brief stint in rehab.
Sheen checked in to rehab in February. His publicist called it preventative measure to deal with his personal issues. Who goes into rehab for preventative reasons?
RadarOnline reports Sheen has enlisted a sober coach to follow him around all day to make sure he doesn`t drink or do drugs. Guess what? He allegedly had a sober coach with him on the night of the fight with his wife.
Oh, we`ve got to check that out. That doesn`t make any sense at all, where was he?
Sheen makes a reported $900,000 an episode. He is the highest paid actor on series television. I`m not surprised he wanted to get back. But will rehab by night work for the troubled Hollywood bad boy?
Straight out to my fantastic panel: also joining me, senior editor of "In Touch Weekly," Kim Serafin. Kim, what do we know about all of this?
KIM SERAFIN, SENIOR EDITOR, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": Yes, Charlie Sheen has returned to work after -- as you mentioned, he pled not guilty. He`s due back for trial on July 21st. So he`s got some time. But he did return to the set of "Two and a Half Men" and as you mentioned, the reports are from RadarOnline and other places that he has returned to the set with a sober coach and that he will attend rehab at night.
Also according to reports, the set will be closed. They normally tape in front of a live studio audience on Fridays, but this week it`ll have a closed set.
And then, again, he will be attending rehab according to reports at night. But working during the day, he is the highest paid sitcom star on TV and the ratings by the way for "Two and a Half Men" have been high. I mean, it`s the highest rated show on TV. And I think the March 8th episode was one of their highest rated ever.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, my gosh. Maybe I should get into trouble -- maybe I should get into trouble and go to rehab and then I could do this show by night and go to rehab by day. Oh, that`s a great idea, what do you think?
Kristina Wandzilak --
REEF KARIM, ADDICTION SPECIALIST: Down to the plan.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- you`re an interventionist on TLC`s "Addicted" which debuts tomorrow. Is this sort of a cockamamie rehab where you go at night and then by day you have a sober coach following you around? I mean is this the way it should be done?
KRISTINA WANDZILAK, INTERVENTIONIST, TLC`S "ADDICTED": In my opinion, no. You know, in my understanding is that, he`s in residential treatment and he leaves during the day and comes back at night. That`s the very thing actually, that kind of entitlement, that special treatment that kills celebrities, you know, all the time.
I think one of the most beautiful examples of a celebrity who did treatment right is Keith Urban when he went to the Betty Ford Center for 90 days and then had a very strict continuing care program. It`s a beautiful example of how it should be done.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And he`s a beautiful guy.
WANDZILAK: To take time out and to really commit to recovery it`s so important. And as somebody that`s worked with celebrities in high-profile cases over the last many years, it`s this entitlement that kills people. I`ve seen it all the time.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Dr. Reef, what is this sober coach in about 20 seconds.
WANDZILAK: I don`t want sober coaches --
KARIM: All right, sober --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dr. Reef --
WANDZILAK: Oh, I`m sorry.
KARIM: Real quick we got -- we residential treatment. After residential treatment, we`ve got sober living. Sober living we get aftercare outpatient treatment.
Sober coach is like a part babysitter, part watchdog who is sober themselves, usually five to ten years. He`s there to make sure you don`t get into trouble, and he`s there to take you to meetings.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: More on Charlie Sheen`s --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Fasten your seat belts. Charlie Sheen is back at work. He was on the set shooting his sitcom "Two and a Half Men" today. He will reportedly continue to work on the show and get rehab treatment at night. Isn`t that special?
But it`s not supposed to be special. That`s the whole point of rehab.
Senitca, Arkansas, your question or thought.
SENITCA, ARKANSAS (via telephone): I believe he should be in rehab full-time. With parents myself, dealing with alcohol and drug abuse, I believe that, you know, I think that he`s only doing it to look at -- look good for court. I think that if he was really serious about it he would do it full-time and not worry about work and take off work.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know, you make a very good point. Kim Serafin, now, the trial, his jury trial is set to start in July. Are they on hiatus at that point? Because if not how would he be able to tape the show and attend the trial as a defendant?
SERAFIN: Right. Well, it could potentially affect production. As I said, he did take that leave of absence while he went to rehab. Now he`s back on, he`s working so he can do the rehab and work at the same time.
This does start in July. I think it`s supposedly maybe like a three-day trial. His publicist did say Charlie looks forward to the trial and to clearing his name. So they obviously think it will be kind of quick.
SERAFIN: Obviously, hopefully for production it would be. Again, it is the highest rated sitcom on TV --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All for the convenience of the -- yes, let`s not mess with the schedule, the television schedule.
Brooke Mueller is also in non-traditional rehab right now. She abruptly left a Malibu clinic after a staffer allegedly leaked some of her private details to the press. And that`s terrible.
Now, Brooke is doing rehab, though, from her very own home. This isn`t the first stint in rehab for Brooke or for Charlie.
All right. Dr. Reef, what the heck`s going on here? You have a couple, a married couple with both of them in rehab at the same time. That`s weird enough. Now one`s doing rehab at home, and the other one`s doing rehab at night while they shoot a hit TV show during the daytime.
KARIM: Yes, it doesn`t really sound too serious here. It`s like they trigger each other. It`s like a trigger-happy relationship. And what ends up happening is neither one of them wants to really commit fully, in my opinion, to the rehab process and the recovery process, so they`re kind of halfway doing it.
One`s doing it at night with a TV show, and the other one`s kind of doing it. And the chances are based on research data both of them are going to have problems in the future because they`re not taking the time out to really work on themselves now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Matt, Tennessee, your question or thought.
MATT, TENNESSE (via telephone): Ok. In AA you have a sponsor. Is a sober coach the same thing, you that get paid for it when you do it for a celebrity?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, that`s a great question. Kristina, want to take a shot at it?
WANDZILAK: It is not meant to be. A sober coach is not meant to be a sponsor in AA. A sober coach is generally somebody that`s qualified to process issues, to be able to talk and support the person through the day. What`s coming up for them, how are you walking through this, helping them self-regulate their emotions, which you know, we addicts are so terrible at in early recovery. And --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And your story is fascinating, Kristina, because you`re very open about the fact that you descended into meth addiction and even prostitution. And now you`re back on top of the world with your own show.
WANDZILAK: Well, thank you. Yes. I am very open. I do believe in living transparently in the hopes that it helps others.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Thank you, fabulous panel.
And you are watching ISSUES on HLN.