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New Details About Joran`s Confession

Aired June 14, 2010 - 19:00:00   ET



JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST: Tonight, stomach-churning new details in the brutal murder of Stephany Flores. Peruvian authorities released Joran van Der Sloot`s confession in gruesome detail. He describes how he savagely killed this 21-year-old, elbowing her in the face and suffocating her with his own bloody shirt.

I`ll tell you about Joran`s alarming admissions and reports that he`s now terrified he may be killed in prison by angry inmates seeking revenge.

Then, the case of missing 7-year-old Kyron Horman takes a frightening turn. Cops choked back tears to announce it`s now a criminal investigation. It`s been 10 days since the adorable Portland boy vanished. His family is finally speaking out. What do cops know that make them fear foul play?

Plus, escalating chaos in the wake of Gary Coleman`s death. A mystery woman is suddenly revealed as a secret third wheel pops up. Who is Anna Gray? And why might she gain control of the former child star`s estate? The news is reportedly rocking ex-wife Shannon Price as the two women dive into a war of the wills.

ISSUES starts now.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, mind-blowing new twists and turns out of Peru. We have all the grisly details of Joran van der Sloot`s bizarre - and I mean stomach-churning murder confession. During an interrogation by Peruvian police, Joran allegedly lays out a bone-chilling account - of course a new account of what he did inside his blood-drenched hotel room while savagely murdering 21-year-old Stephany Flores Ramirez.

CNN obtained a transcript of van der Sloot`s confession from Peruvian authorities. Joran says he met Stephany at a casino. There`s the surveillance video of that fateful meeting. And then they decide to go back to his hotel room to play, of all things, online poker.

He said they were just happily playing on his laptop, playing that online poker, when a Facebook message pops up on the screen about Natalee Holloway`s death. Joran said he then explained his infamous connection to the case and Stephany freaked out, hitting him in the head. Joran says that`s when he snapped, elbowing Stephany hard in the nose, causing blood to gush from her nose everywhere.

Joran says he then reacted without thinking, attacking Stephany with his bare hands, furiously grabbing her neck. He says, quote, "There was blood everywhere. I started to think she was going to faint. It affected me so that I grabbed her from the neck and strangled her for a minute", end quote.

Then, Joran pushed Stephany off the mattress and on to the floor where he said he smothered her with his blood-drenched t-shirt. He tells the cops, "I took my shirt and put it on her face, pressing hard until I killed Stephany", end quote.

You know, I got to say, reading the transcript of this confession, Joran comes off as eerily calm and totally emotionless.

You know, more of the same with this guy. He also promises to divulge the location of Natalee Holloway`s body, but only if he can speak to Aruban authorities. We all know he desperately wants out of Peru. He is afraid fellow inmates will kill him.

Is Joran now suffering from the boy who cried wolf syndrome? You know, he has lied so many times that now, when he really needs to tell the truth about Natalee Holloway, nobody believes him. What do you think at home? Give me a holler. 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-297.

Straight out to my fantastic expert panel, and I mean all experts on this case. But first to Jean Casarez, correspondent for "IN SESSION" on truTV. Jean is smack-dab in the middle of the action in Peru. Jean, you`ve been tracking this case for days now. What is the very latest?

JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION" ON TRUTV: Well, the very latest is we confirmed today that Joran van der Sloot`s lawyer, he wanted off the case, so he`s gone. He`s not on the case anymore. We confirmed that this afternoon. He had told us this weekend that the case was just causing too many problems for him.

Now, late in the week last week, he told us that he was getting threats himself from the phone, internet, e-mail, Facebook. He was hiding out here in Lima. But now it`s official, Joran van der Sloot needs an attorney.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, yes. I want to repeat it, because it is breaking news. Joran`s Peruvian attorney has suddenly quit. Maximo Altez Navarro says, quote, "This has created many problems for me", end quote. Probably the understatement of the century.

Public reports say he complained he didn`t think the van der Sloot family could afford to pay him. He also has reportedly gotten threats, as Jean mentions, since representing Joran.

Now Jean, I`ve got to go back to you. Why do you think he would think the van der Sloot family could not pay him? I thought they were well-to- do. And I also thought that his mother was planning to come to Peru. Did she arrive in Peru? I mean, what`s going on here with this family?

CASAREZ: Well, here`s what we can confirm. Yesterday, he had a visitor. It was the attorney. His mother, if she is here, she has not come to visit him, so that may be a clear indication of whether his mother is here or not.

As to whether there`s money to pay the attorney, the fact that he quit could be significant in that area. But what we`re learning is that he may get another private attorney or, if not, a public defender will be appointed for him, much like it`s done in the United States.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jayne Weintraub, criminal defense attorney. Why on earth would any attorney quit what could be the most high profile case in the globe right now? This is what attorneys live and die for. They want to get their hands on a case like this because they can become world famous. They can make their name. And this guy is walking away from this case. It doesn`t make sense to me.

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, A) he may not need to become world famous and he may be a very prominent attorney, and the victim`s father in this case is a very prominent, political, wealthy man of means. And maybe it is causing a conflict to the lawyer`s other business.

Also remember, this guy, Joran, is hated about as much as Scott Peterson was. This is not a way to win friends and influence people and get a lot of clients. This is a hated client, so it`s not so easy.

The lawyer did say, however, that he was going to challenge the confession, because he didn`t think it was legally gotten and that may have something to do with it as well. Maybe he`s being threatened. We don`t know.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Mike Brooks, has Joran really done himself in? He started out with a quote, "honest confession, cooperating with authorities". We were talking the first couple of days maybe he`s going to get out in seven years.

Then he got this high powered Peruvian attorney who started challenging the evidence saying it was sloppily collected, who started saying that they should throw out the confession. Now, he quits.

So Joran is left with the worst of both possible worlds. He`s alienated the entire system and - and he doesn`t have his attorney to help him anymore.

MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Exactly. And, you know, if he`s going to be given another public, you know, public defender, he had a public defender before but the private attorney said that he was friends -- buddies with the police, so if he gets another private - public defender, is that public defender also going to be pro-law enforcement or pro- prosecution? Who knows?

Things are done a lot differently down there, Jane, and, you know, right now he is in a high security prison, in a maximum security section, where it`s just he and some Colombian hit man.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, I know. That is absolutely wild. And we`ve got to ask a question based on this confession. We`re going to get to the hit man in a second.

All right, Joran is currently being held here in the Miguel Castro Castro Prison outside Lima, Peru. He`s waiting a psychological evaluation.

Now, Joran is not in with the general population. As you just heard from Mike Brooks, he`s in a high security area of the prison. He`s under 24-hour guard, and he`s reportedly been hobnobbing and watching TV with an infamous Colombian hit man.

So, my question is why should he be afraid for his life? He`s under special security. Except - unless, maybe, Pat Brown, he ultimately ends up in the general population if he`s convicted. What could happen there? Because I`ve heard some horror stories about the Peruvian prison system.

PAT BROWN, CRIMINAL PROFILER: You know, Jane, we hear these stories all the time, but that doesn`t mean Joran is really going to suffer as much as we think he is. Think about it, these - these prisoners are not like the citizens that we think about, you know, who care about the world and care about people doing the right thing and care about women and children. These are criminals.

Joran is a criminal too, and he might be a criminal with some money who can, you know, spread that money around and get what he wants and get some protection and - and make some buddies. (INAUDIBLE).

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Apparently doesn`t have any money because his attorney quit, saying he doesn`t think he`s going to get paid. So -

BROWN: Well, that`s what he says. But -

VELEZ-MITCHELL: If it`s based on Joran having money, he could be in for trouble in the Peruvian prison because apparently if you don`t have money, you can`t buy protection.

BROWN: That`s true.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`ve got to sleep in a bed with 10 other guys, and, you know what happens when that happens.


BROWN: I hope mom has disowned him. I hope mom has disowned him at this point and says, you know, really, I`ve gotten to the point I realize this - this boy of mine as a - as an evil animal. I`m disowning him. I`m going to go to the Aruban authorities and tell them what I know about Natalee. Wouldn`t that be -


VELEZ-MITCHELL: He`s not an animal. Let`s - let`s not insult animals.

Corbin, North Carolina, your question or thoughts?

BROWN: Good point, Jane. Good point.




VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hey, Corbin, you there?

CORBIN: Yes, I`m here.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, Corbin. How you doing?

CORBIN: I`m doing fine.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What`s your question or thoughts, sir?

CORBIN: I`m just wondering if there`s anything in his past that might have alerted the authorities to maybe make them believe that he has the traits of a serial killer, because everything, in my opinion, that I`ve seen would possibility lead me to believe that. So is there anything in his --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, good - good point. Stephanie Good, author of "Aruba: The Tragic Untold Story of Natalee Holloway and Corruption in Paradise". What is it about this young man as a child or a teen that might have lead people to believe that he would turn out this way?

STEPHANIE GOOD, AUTHOR, "ARUBA: THE TRAGIC UNTOLD STORY OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY": Well, he`s always had a bad reputation. He - he had free rein on Aruba. His parents really didn`t watch over him, apparently.

He was allowed to gamble underage. He had credit lines, from what I understand. He could run up tabs in the bars. He could run up tabs in the casinos. When he was under age he was driving around town when he was underage to drive.

So it doesn`t look like there were any really restraints on him.


GOOD: And as far as deficiency (ph) -

VELEZ-MITCHELL: If you`re going to pamper your kid, think twice, because this is what happens when you pamper a kid too much and give a teenager, who`s not of age, a $50,000 credit line to gamble in the casino.

Everybody stay right where you are. More on Joran van der Sloot. We`re just getting started. Plus, Kyron Horman has been missing for nine days. Cops are now calling this case a criminal case. Why?

Kyron`s family is finally speaking out. What do they have to say?

Plus, more on Joran`s confession shockers, and we`re taking your calls on this. So line it up. Give us a holler, 1-800-JVM-SAYS.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Once he killed like that, he have to almost kill again.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s very arrogant. Why? He`s that - it`s like it`s in his DNA. He`s just - you know, they - you become that. You become this evil beast like that that thirsts for murder.



CAROLINA JORGE, VICTIM`S SISTER-IN-LAW: We need justice for our family, for - for Natalee`s family, too. I think he`s a psycho, a murderer, and he has to pay.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, Joran`s shocking confession. The Dutch playboy allegedly admits to the brutal murder of 21-year-old Stephany Flores. Joran says he told Peruvian authorities that he tried to turn himself in once he saw his face on the front page of every newspaper in Peru, but he claims he actually had a hard time doing so.

Straight out to Jean Casarez who is in the center of the action in Lima, Peru. What`s so fascinating about this, Jean, we know he lied so many times about what happened to Natalee. Hasn`t he already told at least a couple of stories about what happened to Stephany?

I understand there`s something about a - a man with a knife and another man with a gun. Tell us about that.

CASAREZ: That`s right, Jane. Over the weekend, we got the Interpol police report out of Chile, and what he says in that is that when he was first arrested in Chile, that he said that it was attackers, that it was armed robbers in the hotel room with a knife and a gun and that he left to go out and get some money to hopefully make them leave, that he wanted to flee at that point, knew he had to come back, that they were responsible for everything that happened to Stephany Flores.

And, in addition, Jane, when he was driving in a taxi from Santiago to the water area, he said he saw a local newspaper and guess what? He saw his picture in the paper, Dutch murderer, and he told the taxi driver - and he says he turned himself in. But yet, on the other hand, the taxi driver called police. So there could be another side to the story, the taxi driver saying who I have in the taxi with me.

BROOKS: And, Jane -


BROOKS: -- do you think possibly - and, you know, he went out to get the coffee. He came back with two cups of coffee. And -- but apparently - -

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, we`re going to get to that!

BROOKS: OK, because -

VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`re going to get to that right now. I want to get your reaction.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I want to get to that reaction right now. Joran admitted in his confession that he went to go get two cups of coffee after he murdered Stephany Flores. Was he trying to make it look like she was still alive in there?

Now, I knew right off the bat this is not the type of guy to ever bring a girl coffee. He`s just not that much of a gentleman. And I talked about this exact theory last week on ISSUES. Check this out.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s what I`m wondering. Do they have video of Joran going to get coffee and coming back with it? And could she have already been dead when he brought those two cups of coffee back to the room to make it seem like she was still alive?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: So, Mike Brooks, take it away.

BROOKS: There you go, Jane. You got your answer. Yes, she was already dead when he came back with those two cups of coffee.

But why did he come up and knock on the door? It`s all him putting together his story. He tried to get someone to let him in? Oh, that`s lowly.

So, you know, who`s to - who`s to know what his real story and what the truth coming out of this guy`s mouth is, Jane?




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I really want to comment on this thing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me see the panel. I got to bring out the big gavel because you`re all talking at the same time. All right, I will start with -

GOOD: Well, Jane.


GOOD: Who?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, who was the loudest? Let`s see. Go ahead, Stephanie.

GOOD: I can be the loudest.

First of all, this story is so absurd. Are you going to tell me he`s claiming there were two guys in the hotel room, and yet he left, he took her money, he took her car, he made his way all the way to Chile. He didn`t call the police about these two other guys that were in there that supposedly killed her?

Where did we hear a story like this before? On Aruba, the first two people to be arrested for the alleged murder of Natalee Holloway was two security guards. Then we also have Deepak and Satish Kalpoe. Now we have Joran and his father, Paulus.

It just always seems like this guy is making up one story after another. So, first he confessed, and now it`s two other guys that were in the room, but it just doesn`t wash.

BROOKS: How about the blond -


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Pat Brown, 30 seconds. Pat Brown.

BROWN: Well, remember Maxwell Smart used to give out a story when he was caught and say, I give a story and they would go, "Huh?" and he go, "OK, would you believe -" and he`d go to the next story. This is what Joran is doing.

First there`s two guys in the room with a gun and a knife but then, hey, the police say, wait as minute, why didn`t they kill you? You were the witness. Oh, yes. Would you believe I got tipped off -

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want to know why -


VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- why were her pants off? And we`re going to get to that next.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Attempted sexual assault.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: More on van der Sloot straight ahead. We`re just getting started.

Plus, this is a horror story. Melissa Huckaby, sentenced to life behind bars today for murdering Sandra Cantu, the 8-year-old girl who`s found stuffed in a suitcase. You remember this hideous case.

Look how much weight this woman has put on behind bars. You wouldn`t believe what Melissa Huckaby had to say in court today. She looks like a different person. My gosh.

Plus, a whole lot more to talk about in the Joran van der Sloot murder confession. And Father`s day, is this Sunday were salute to your father (ph).



BETH HOLLOWAY TWITTY, MOTHER OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY: He was just totally, totally tried to (INAUDIBLE) -- Mr. Joran van der Sloot. It`s just despicable what he has done. It`s a sad form of a human existence.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, breaking news, Joran`s private attorney pleads with a judge to take Joran`s bone-chilling confession off the table, and then he turns around and quits, leaving Joran high and dry. We have more details on Joran`s shocking alleged confession to Peruvian cops. He says he wasn`t thinking when he hit Stephany Flores in the nose, blood gushed everywhere, then he strangled her and smothered her with his t-shirt.

Anita, Alabama, your question or thought, ma`am.

VOICE OF ANITA, ALABAMA: Yes. I was just wondering. You know, much has been made of him killing Stephany five years to the day that Natalee disappeared, and I wondered if anyone checked back in his past and if that day had some significance for him or some traumatic experience.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Woo, that`s a good one. Because we know that often a rage is triggered on anniversaries.

Stephanie Good, you wrote the book on this case. Is there anything about Joran`s past that may make this particular date or a period of time significant?

GOOD: I have to say that I don`t know. I don`t know about that. But I can tell you that it would just be significant enough that he did something to Natalee on that day and then five years later repeated his behavior. I couldn`t say anything about earlier than that, though. But I think that anything he did to Natalee and with all the publicity surrounding it, that that would be enough to trigger something on the anniversary.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, yes. I definitely think that it`s no coincidence that this all happened on the fifth anniversary of Natalee`s disappearance. I think his rage was bubbling up and he was primed -

GOOD: Maybe that`s why the Facebook (INAUDIBLE).

VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- for this kind of confrontation. Yes. It could have been that it was the fifth anniversary. That`s a good point.

Jayne Weintraub, the Facebook message may have popped up because it was the fifth anniversary and thereby also triggering the violence.

WEINTRAUB: Well, that`s exactly it. And according to him - and we don`t know from the transcripts because we don`t know what was done to him to make him confess. We don`t just take it at face value. He`s not in the United States. He`s in Peru. It was a bit cool to catch him, and we really don`t know what the circumstances were surrounding that confession.

But what we do know is that according to the confession he says that those messages popped up on Facebook which are easily, you know, corroborated. And she hit him in the head. It was his impulse. I mean, he`s not saying the words self defense.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Well, saying the words, stop blaming the victim. He`s always blaming the victim.

WEINTRAUB: He`s not saying - he`s not saying self defense. He`s using the word - that was his impulse to hit her back. But I`ll tell you what, all the blood in that room and in that scene did not come from her nose, although there is a lot of blood to come from your nose.


WEINTRAUB: He says that he suffocated her and she died from asphyxiation from strangling. That`s not blood. So something else was the cause of death. I`d like to see the autopsy.

BROOKS: And he is saying - and he is -

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jean Casarez - go ahead Mike.

BROOKS: No, I was just going to say there`s a possibility he might be saying, well, you know, it was impulse, so it wouldn`t - he wouldn`t be stuck with a premeditated murder.


BROOKS: But we all know premeditation can be made in the blink of an eye.

WEINTRAUB: In the United States.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And remember there was a tennis racket that he alleged used as part of this. Where did the tennis racket go? So many stories coming up right now that we cannot keep track of. It`s just like the Natalee Holloway case. Stay with us for more.

Also we`ve got the case of missing Kyron Horman. It`s now a criminal investigation. His family is speaking out for the very first time, and I`m going to tell you what they`re saying.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: The case of missing 7-year-old Kyron Horman takes a frightening turn. Cops choke back tears to announce it`s now a criminal investigation. It`s been ten days since the adorable Portland boy vanished. His family is finally speaking out. What do cops know that make them fear foul play?

Plus, escalating chaos in the wake of Gary Coleman`s death; a mystery woman is suddenly revealed as a secret third will pops up. Who is Anna Gray? And why might she gain control of the former child star`s estate? The news is reportedly rocking ex-wife Shannon Price as the two women dive into a war of the wills.

Tonight a spine-tingling confession from Joran Van Der Sloot: CNN has obtained the transcript of Joran`s alleged confession to Peruvian police. He says he went back to his hotel room to play online poker with Stephany Flores and while they were on the computer, a Facebook message popped up on the screen about Natalee Holloway.

Joran allegedly claimed Stephany freaked out and then hit him in the face. He became enraged, poked her in the nose. Blood gushed everywhere. Then he strangled her and then he suffocated her with a bloody shirt.

Straight out to Jean Casarez, correspondent for "In Session who is live in Lima, Peru tracking this case; we are trying to figure out what is the truth here. And it is so difficult with this pathological liar you are looking at. He says, oh, he just snapped when this Facebook message came up and he had to explain his connection to the case and then she hit him and he bopped her in the nose. But her pants were off, and there was a tennis racket that was allegedly involved.

What do you know, Jean?

JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION": Here`s what we know about the tennis racket. Authorities confirmed with us last week that the tennis racket was sent for forensic testing. No blood on it at all. He says in the confession that the tennis racket was there but he didn`t use it at all during the commission of the crime. So that is corroborative with each other but here`s what`s not.

All of the injuries on her, on her knees, on her feet, on her arms, on her middle finger. There`s an open wound, it says. He says there was no struggle at all.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I got to say this. I also think -- and I`m a recovering alcoholic, as I tell people all the time with 15 years of sobriety -- I think this guy could be an alcoholic. Apparently in the confession he admits to drinking at least ten whiskeys that night. That`s alcoholic drinking. Alcoholics do experience blackouts. So there`s always the possibility, Pat Brown, that he was kind of going in and out of consciousness after 10 -- 10 whiskeys is a hell of a lot of whiskey, I don`t care if you`re 6`3.


PAT BROWN, CRIMINAL PROFILER: He`s not going in and out of consciousness. He knew when he took that girl back to the room for and it wasn`t to play some poker. No guy takes a girl back to (INAUDIBLE) and want to play poker with her; ask any guy. He was going there to have sex with her like he wanted every other woman.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: One at a time. Ok. Go ahead --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think they were drinking, they`re having a good time.

BROWN: I don`t think so. He`s a serial date rapist and when a girl stands up to him he gets angry. This girl is half dressed and my guess it that`s exactly what he wanted from her and she refused. She did not want to have sex with him.

That`s all I`m going to say.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And you know that --


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on. You know that an ex-girlfriend has said publicly that she was with Stephany Flores. Stephany Flores was a lesbian and is not interested in men. She Stephany might have gone over there thinking she was going to play poker. He may have had another idea.

BROWN: Exactly.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And when she rejects him, then all heck breaks loose.

Lina in Florida, your question or thought, ma`am.

ALINA, FLORIDA (via telephone): Yes. Hi Jane. It`s such a pleasure to talk to you. Sorry for the circumstances.


LINA: The families are in my prayers but I have a question. Do they have cameras in the cell where Joran is with the other prisoners? And would they be able to monitor everything that they`re saying to each other?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, that`s an excellent question. Jean Casarez, he is in this high security area. He`s with a Colombian hit man and they`re watching TV together. Are they possibly listening to what he has to say?

CASAREZ: Well, they do it in American jails, so I would say definitely here. And I`ve been here a week now. And everything is videotaped Jane.

I went to the beauty shop over the weekend. Guess what? There`s a video camera right there where they wash your hair. So video cameras are a part of life here in Lima, Peru. And I definitely think that they are monitoring things in that prison.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, go ahead.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just wanted to say something about what`s in the confession. When he offers to tell Natalee`s family where she is and where she`s buried if only to the Aruban officials back in Aruba. I just want to say that I think it would be wonderful for the family to have closure and for the Holloways once and for all to put this to rest and peace.

But on the other hand he`s so desperate to get out of Peru, that I don`t even know if he killed Natalee. I don`t know if he could tell where those details are. But one of thing for sure, the Peruvian government is certainly not going to give this guy up and not letting him leave Peru.

BROOKS: Exactly.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. And let me say this.

Mike Brooks, my feeling is that Natalee is probably in the ocean. And if she is in the ocean, her remains scattered a long time ago. We obviously just celebrated or marked, honored the fifth anniversary of her disappearance.

I think one of the reasons he keeps changing his story is to try to make a buck knowing that he can never really tell the full story because wherever he dumped her, she`s long gone because that island isn`t that big.

BROOKS: No, it`s not. You know, there`s been so many theories but I`m going to have to agree with an ocean that big there most likely she is. But the whole thing is he wanted to work something to get back to Aruba and get out of Peru.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because he controls there --

BROOKS: Absolutely.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ok. We have to go.

We`re going to switch gears now to another absolutely heart- wrenching story.

Tonight desperation mounts in the frantic search for adorable little Kyron Horman. It is now day 11 and police are finally calling the search a criminal investigation.

So why the switch now? This little guy is only 7 years old -- what a cute guy. He vanished from inside his hallway. Cops in Portland, Oregon, say his stepmother walked Kyron into the school, watched him walk down the hallway after a science fair but somehow he never made it into class and he has not been seen since.


DAN STATON, MULTNOMAH COUNTY SHERIFF: And we will be continuing this investigation. It is not going to stop. I am not going to cease in dedicating resources to locating Kyron.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: You can see the sheriff is extremely emotional. 1,300 rescue workers have been desperately searching for this child. It is one of the largest searches in Oregon history.

On Friday, Kyron`s family finally came forward. Here is his tearful stepdad desperately begging anyone with information to speak out.


TONY YOUNG, KYRON HORMAN`S STEPFATHER: Kyron, we miss you. We love you. And we need you home right now. We`re doing everything we can to work with law enforcement in the search and the rescue crews to make sure that you can get back to us as soon as p possible.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s my big question. Why is this now suddenly a criminal investigation? Do cops know something they`re not telling us?

Back with my expert panel but first straight out to investigative report Michelle Sigona from Michelle, what are you hearing?

MICHELLE SIGONA, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER, MICHELLESIGONA.COM: Well, one of the lieutenants with the sheriff`s office did tell me today that although they`re moving forward in a criminal investigation, scaling back on the search efforts, that in this particular case if there are still tips they will have local crews to go out and check them out.

Her reasoning was because they have searched that area from the Skyline Elementary School where he went missing from dozens of times and with 1,300 volunteers. I mean thorough grid searches have been done. In addition today, Jane, a $25,000 reward was also put up.

And also, I did confirm with Matt Shelby from the school district that when Kyron was in the school that morning it was actually a science fair that was going on prior to classes. He was seen walking around with his stepmother by one teacher and one other staff member. From that particular point he did not show up to his first class.

I also confirmed that there are not surveillance cameras that unfortunately are within the school and it is a very rural community at this particular time.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Are there cameras outside the school? Are there cameras as you walk into the school? Who said no?

SIGONA: He said that there --


SIGONA: Matt Shelby from the school district said that there are not, unfortunately. There may be others throughout the area that investigators are looking into.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ok. Here`s my big issue tonight. Where`s the missing puzzle piece?

I don`t feel like we`re getting the whole story, Mike Brooks. A 7-year-old boy is missing. He vanished from inside his school. It had sparked one of the largest searches in state history. We`re learning 11 days later cops are scaling back search efforts. At the same time, they`re saying this is a criminal investigation.

I think there`s got to be a connection there. They know something, Mike, that we don`t know.

BROOKS: You know what Jane? Either they know something that they`re not telling, they`re waiting for part of this case to play out, or they may not know anything. It was interesting today -- Captain Baites during the presser he said, quote, "This will not become a cold case."

You know, we`ve had a number of different law enforcement agencies involved in it including the FBI. They`ve brought their child abduction response team and behavioral sciences there to help out. So they`re scaling back on the physical searches but apparently they`re going full-steam ahead with the investigation.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let`s talk about the parents.

Kyron`s parents have been out of the spotlight for the entire investigation. It took an entire week until anybody in the family came forward and spoke to the press.

Let`s listen.


KAINE HORMAN, KYRON`S FATHER: We would like to thank the media. If it was not for you showing Kyron on every newscast, printing his story in the papers, his face would not be known to everyone. People from around the nation have seen his picture. This helps tremendously.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: What I find odd, Michelle, is that the two women, the biological mother and stepmother did not speak at the news conference. Your thoughts?

SIGONA: I agree, this is odd. No, definitely. You and I have covered hundreds and hundreds of cases over our career. And when normally when a child goes missing -- and again I`m respecting their efforts in the way that they want to handle things.

But in most times in a lot of these cases when your child goes missing you come up to the plate immediately and you plead to the public for help. And what this does is that it resonates in the hearts and the minds of so many people --


SIGONA: -- and they remember that. If they have information they pick up the phone and they come forward.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Got to leave it right there. Thank you, fabulous panel.

Melissa Huckaby will spend the rest of her life behind bars for the murder of 6-year-old (SIC) Sandra Cantu. And you will not believe the story she had in court today. And look at her.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: More details emerge in the tragic death of actor Gary Coleman. That is next.

But first "Top of the Block" tonight and what an awful one.

A child murderer sentenced to life in prison. Melissa Huckaby pleaded guilty last month to murdering her neighbor, 8-year-old Sandra Cantu and stuffing the child`s body in a suitcase in March of 2009.

Huckaby was sentenced today to life in prison on a first degree murder charge. She was also accused of sexually assaulting the girl and she has denied that today. Those charges by the way were dropped. Huckaby apologized to Sandra`s family for her gruesome acts. Check it out.


MELISSA HUCKABY, CONVICTED OF MURDERING SANDRA CANTU: It is not enough that I say I am sorry, but that is all I can do. On the day Sandra has died I`ve had to live with the consequences of what I have done. For the rest of my life, I`m going to have to live with these feelings of responsibility for her death. Not a day, not an hour goes by that I don`t think about the hurt that I caused.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sorry? Sorry is a word that should be removed from the dictionary, ok? It`s not good enough. Huckaby is a mother. She was Sandra`s Sunday schoolteacher. She was supposed to protect this little girl. But instead she murdered her.

Sorry is not going to bring Sandra back to her devastated parents. I say forget 25 years. This lady, she should be locked up for life. Please.

That`s tonight`s "Top of the Block." Ridiculous.

Now to a late-breaking shocker in the Gary Coleman estate drama, TMZ is reporting -- are you sitting down -- Gary did not want to be taken off life support. This jaw-dropper comes to light as documents filed by his estranged wife Shannon Price.

How ironic is that since it was Shannon who authorized doctors to pull the plug two days after Gary fell and got a hemorrhage. Now, Shannon says she was forced to do it. Huh? Really?

Shannon is locked in a heated battle for control over Gary`s remains and his estate with a new mystery woman. Shannon wants to be in charge because the will she has is from 2007. She also claims that she and Gary were still legally married despite the fact that they were divorced. Huh? Ok, it`s Hollywood, but still.

Meantime, who is this mystery woman? Her name is Anna Gray. And she says she should be the executor, ore on her in just a moment. Meantime, what is all the fuss about, I mean, in terms of the money anyway? Wasn`t the one time "Diff`rent Strokes" star practically penniless when he died?

Check out this TMZ video where Gary appeared as a used car salesman.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m going to keep my eye on you and we`re going to make sure that you`re doing all the stuff that you need to be doing --

GARY COLEMAN, ACTOR: Right, tell me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Perfect you`ve got a guy right out here.

COLEMAN: You want me to bring him to you?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. I want you to sell him a car. That`s what you`re here for right? Go sell him a car?

COLEMAN: I`m going to sell him a car?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, be nice and make a friend and sell the car.

COLEMAN: Good afternoon sir. What can I do for you today, my name is Gary.


COLEMAN: Gary, Gary. I am not a people person, I have never been a people person. But as long as it makes my marriage work, I`ll do it with a smile and try to please them.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow, you know, it`s a sad turn. A former child star reduced to that.

I am taking your calls 1-877-JVM SAYS, 1-877-7297 (SIC).

Straight out to my fantastic panel: my good buddy, Danny Bonaduce, actor, radio talk show host on 94.1 WYSP in Philly and former "Partridge Family" child star as well as my other good buddy, Carlos Diaz, syndicated radio talk show host.

Carlos, there was a hearing apparently over these dueling documents in Utah today. What a can of worms. Try to explain to us because it`s just one too many people involved at this point.

CARLOS DIAZ, SYNDICATED RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Well, let`s -- let`s talk first about the shocking news today that just broke. In 2006, Gary Coleman signed a health care directive where he said that he did not want to be taken off life support.

It was not something that can be debated. It was a very clear box where he checked the box that he wanted his life to be prolong, there was a box that said, "do not prolong my life". He did not check that box. He checked the box, "prolong my life".

Ironically, as you said, Shannon Price was the one who filed these papers so that she can gain control of Gary`s -- of Gary`s estate. But this is damning evidence to Shannon Price because it says right there he wanted his life to be prolonged.

And then you have the death certificate where Shannon Price claims that she is still married to Gary Coleman when in fact they were divorced in 2006, two huge developments today in court.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And not only that, but Coleman`s agent has revealed that Todd Bridges and others pleaded with her not to pull the plug.

So, Carlos, I`ve got to go back to you and ask what the heck were cops thinking by saying, oh, you know, case closed, everything is fine here, nothing to see, go home?

DIAZ: You know, I`ve said this all along. The cops need to reopen this case and just take a closer look as to what really happened. I mean, she pulled the plug -- Shannon Price pulled the plug or allowed the plug to be pulled on a Friday. Don`t you just take the weekend? Take the weekend to think about at least and to kind of mull over it.

You know this is one of those things where you know, we saw -- some things with Anna Nicole Smith that were kind of fishy and we warned her about that, it`s got -- kind of getting the Anna Nicole Smith range where we`re wondering what is truly going on and what went on in that house that day with Shannon Price and Gary Coleman.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right. With the death bed photo that ends up in the tabloids, with the 911 call.

More on the other side, Danny Bonaduce reacts.



SHANNON PRICE, GARY COLEMAN`S FORMER WIFE: I heard this big bang. I went downstairs. Blood everywhere. I don`t know if he`s ok. I`m not down there right now because I have seizures. If I get stressed out I`m going to seize.

911 OPERATOR: Is there any way you can go down there at all?

PRICE: I`ll try. I don`t know. I mean, I can`t deal with that.

911 OPERATOR: How old is your husband?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Did Gary Coleman`s career go south after his eight-year stint on "Diff`rent Strokes"? Here he is cleaning up poop at a pet shop in another clip of that reality show pilot obtained by TMZ.


COLEMAN: Probably tastes as awful as I think it does.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have to reach in there and pick that poo up with this plastic bag over your hand.

COLEMAN: Handling dog (EXPLETIVE DELETED) is not my thing.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ok. Here`s my big issue. Is there a child star curse? And who better to ask than Danny Bonaduce, who was in the "Partridge Family" and who`s had his share of ups and downs. Is there a curse, Danny?

DANNY BONADUCE, FORMER CHILD STAR: No, I don`t believe that there is Jane. And thank you for having me back. I don`t believe there is a child star curse because Dana Plato and Todd Bridges and Gary Coleman and myself have had serious ups and downs. There`s also Jodie Foster and, you know, the young man from the Andy Griffith show who has now won several academy awards. Ron Howard.

No, I don`t believe there is a ex-child star curse. What I believe in is what happened to me is what happened to Gary. We were hired to be adorable and when we outgrew it we outgrew our careers.

The biggest curse in Gary`s life was that he trusted people who stole from him. I don`t know that that man knew a happy day in his life. Not only was he constantly physically ill, he had dialysis every day and then his parents who, if you believe Gary, stole all his money. They would an 8-year-old to work after a full day of dialysis.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know what, they have also spoken up and said that they are not to blame.

By the way, I still think you are adorable, Danny, even this day.

Who will win this battle of wills? Listen to what a friend of the new mystery woman, Anna Gray, told RadarOnline.


KENT EMMONS, FRIEND OF GARY COLEMAN: I can`t remember what year it was, but he called me and said, look, I`m doing my will and my stuff. He said, "I trust you implicitly. Would you be the executor of my estate with Anna?" I said of course absolutely I will.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ok. Gary`s agent said when Shannon moved in with Gary, Anna was asked to leave. Who is this Anna, Carlos?

DIAZ: Yes, I mean this is a former manager of Gary. You know you saw her on the red carpet in several videos which are now being kind of jerked around online. So now you have two people that going after Gary Coleman`s estate, you have Shannon Price and you have Anna. And you can see her right there in that picture.

But the thing is Gary`s former manager has dropped out and his parents have dropped out of running. So we could have four people battling over the estate. Now we only have two. You better bet Shannon Price would be --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But I thought there was no money there. Carlos, I think there is no money.

BONADUCE: There is mo money.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What are they battling about? Trains?


DIAZ: Those trains are worth a lot. You have books, you have movie deals.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: We have to leave it there. There, I got it. Thank you, fantastic panel.

Before we go I want to show you some video from my big weekend in Los Angeles. I was honored as "Person of the Year" at the Annual Pride Parade in Hollywood. It was a spectacular event -- there I am with a huge turnout. I was thrilled to learn that Grand Marshal Sharon Osbourne is a big fan of ISSUES.

Check this out.


SHARON OSBOURNE: If you want to know anything about news, this is it. Every day Ozzy and I watch Jane.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`re watching ISSUES. Bye.