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ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL
Missing 2-Year-Old Presumed Dead; Grand Jury Hears Testimony in Kyron Horman Case; Drunk Driver Kills Man, 3 Sons
Aired August 3, 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): Tonight, secrets revealed. Massive new twists and turns in the frantic search for Kyron Horman. Cops are now honing in on Terri Horman`s friends. Tonight, seismic new reports say Kyron`s step-mom was given a cell phone that couldn`t be tracked by police. Could records from this secret cell phone lead cops to the little boy?
And boozed up, high and out of control. An alleged drunk driver runs a red light, killing an innocent father and his three sons. On open bottle of malt liquor was found inside the car. Tonight, we`ll look at this guy`s jaw-dropping driving history. Why he was even behind the wheel? I`ll talk one on one with a close friend of his devastated family.
Also, Charlie Sheen let off the hook again. He pled guilty to third- degree assault against his wife, but he`s not going to spend a single day in jail. Cops say he threatened her with a knife and now he`s walking free and blowing kisses. Why isn`t Charlie locked up?
Plus, massive developments in the desperate search for Brittanee Drexel. The 17-year-old girl who vanished during spring break more than a year ago. Tonight, there`s now been another attempted kidnapping at the very same beach resort. Could the suspect lead cops to Brittanee? I`ll talk live with Brittanee`s devastated mother.
ISSUES starts now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But first tonight, breaking news off the top as a second Arizona toddler vanishes mysteriously. Two-year-old Emmett Trapp has been missing since 8 p.m. last night. Emmett lives just 40 miles from where little Sylar Newton vanished nine days ago. The shocking and troubling development comes as police announce they have reached the end of the road in their search for little Sylar.
Sylar disappeared during a camping trip with a family who was reportedly trying to adopt him. Searchers have been combing through a landfill since last week. Here is the very latest from the sheriff, who could barely choke back the tears.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHERIFF STEVE WAUGH, YAVAPAI COUNTY, ARIZONA: The sheriff`s office believes that Sylar did not wander from the campground, and he is presumably dead. The search -- the search effort is now in a recovery mode, and the investigation has become criminal in nature.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Straight out to Mike Brooks, HLN law enforcement analyst. Mike, cops believe Sylar is dead, and they say they don`t expect foul play in the second boy`s disappearance. Plus, cops insist there`s no known association between these two cases. How can cops say that when we don`t know what happened to either one of these boys?
MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, I don`t know how they can say that right now, because they don`t know where Sylar is right now. But Jane, they say -- you heard the sheriff, very emotional. It is now in a recovery mode.
But the whole -- the whole story there. I think, from what I`ve been reading and everybody I`ve been talking to, the bloodhounds that were used there, they kept coming back to the camp site. They didn`t go outside of that camp site area, Jane, which means to me that there was no scent outside that area. He had to have been driven away from that campground.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Thank you for bringing us that very latest development, Mike Brooks.
Tonight, our other big story of the evening, fast-breaking developments in another missing child case, the Kyron Horman case. "The Oregonian" newspaper is now reporting cops believe the missing boy`s stepmother, Terri Horman, used -- get this -- secret cell phones to avoid the scrutiny of investigators. So cops are putting a squeeze on Terri Horman`s close circle of friends, because one of those friends allegedly gave her new cell phones after little Kyron vanished.
If this report is true, the big question is, who could Terri be talking to and about what? Is this why Kyron`s mom is absolutely convinced that Terri has little Kyron stashed away somewhere alive?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DESIREE YOUNG, MOTHER OF KYRON: I just have a feeling that somebody`s holding him. I don`t know if I can elaborate other than that. It`s just a feeling. They believe he`s still alive, as well. We don`t have any evidence to show that he`s not, which is a big deal. Big deal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All this just one day after Kyron`s parents and stepfather appeared before a grand jury. Kyron`s mom and dad reportedly testified for several hours. They both believe Terri Horman, the step-mom, is responsible for Kyron`s disappearance. She is not a suspect.
Did they answer questions about Kyron`s disappearance or about Terri`s alleged murder-for-hire plot against her husband, Kaine, who is Kyron`s dad? Either way, it only takes five out of seven grand jurors to get an indictment.
Terri Horman has not been named a suspect, but this latest revelation about alleged secret cell phones adds more fuel to the firestorm of controversy around her. I am talking your calls on this one: 1-877-JVM- SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.
Straight out to my fantastic expert panel, but we begin with investigative reporter Michelle Sigona. Michelle, what is the very latest?
MICHELLE SIGONA, INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST: This particular grand jury consists of seven community members, Jane, and it`s a very private informal hearing without a judge. And they will hear a lot of the -- a lot of the information, a lot of the testimony, a lot of the things involved in this case to be able to possibly come down with an indictment.
But this process could take weeks, if not months. So we may not have any answers soon. But as we saw yesterday, as Kyron`s family, as his parents specifically stayed behind closed doors for up to three hours. And then they walked out. They didn`t say a word. They got in the car, and they left. And they may have been instructed to do that, specifically, by investigators. Because in this particular process, a lot of things have to remain very quiet. It has to remain a secret in order to be able to contain this information. And to, like I said, move forward with a possible indictment.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, the big issue tonight, tracking Terri. Cops say somebody in Terri`s close circle of friends gave her secret cell phones so that cops couldn`t monitor her calls or trace her pings after little Kyron disappeared. If they can`t track her pings, cops really can`t track her movement unless they`re physically tailing her.
Now Darren Kavinoky, criminal defense attorney, if somebody did give Terri secret cell phones, could they face criminal charges?
DARREN KAVINOKY, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, it`s conceivable there could be something like an accessory after the fact, some kind of aiding and abetting.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: How about obstruction of justice?
KAVINOKY: Well, it could be that, as well.
Here`s the bottom line, is if this obtaining of another cell phone is some kind of evidence of consciousness of guilt, that could certainly come back to bite her in this grand jury proceeding or in any trial.
And also, remember, Jane, when we`re talking about grand juries, these are proceedings that are held in secret. But since there is no defense lawyer there to cross-examine, the prosecutor has a duty to present any exculpatory information, as well.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right.
KAVINOKY: So this is really one where they`ve got to let it all hang out, including the weaknesses in the case.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Victoria Taft, you are the host of "The Victoria Taft Show" in the Portland area. I`ve got to ask you this question. In the words of Jerry Seinfeld, who are these people? Who are these BFFs who would put their own lives and their own futures at risk to help Terri Horman?
VICTORIA TAFT, HOST, "THE VICTORIA TAFT SHOW": That story came as a thunderbolt today. And when I saw that, I thought, who helps someone who clearly is, at this point, a person of interest in this case? What are they trying to hide? I mean, I`m asking the same questions. I can only say that someone who`s protecting a friend and protecting her from what? The cops? Is trying to help her by paying for a phone for her? It`s just outrageous, to tell you the truth.
SIGONA: I also think the question is that -- is if the friend, if that person may have had something to do with this particular case. And maybe cops are possibly zoning in on that person and then, you know, being able to kind of backtrack and figure out that, oh, this person may now have only had information but also may have been helping Terri on the back end to protect themselves.
BROOKS: And Jane, and who has been helping her recently that was her friend that we`ve heard about? DeDe Spicher. And we heard that DeDe Spicher, was on the presser the other day that she was cooperating with police. So is some of this information possibly coming from DeDe Spicher? I would say there`s a very good possibility of that.
KAVINOKY: Well, you know what we see over and over again in these cases, Mike, is there`s two kinds of secrets out there in the world. Those that are not good enough to keep and those that are too good to keep. Law enforcement reigns in and then applies pressure to some of these people.
KAVINOKY: I think the truth will come out.
BROOKS: I think you`re right there.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`re talking about Terri Horman`s best friend, DeDe Spicher. She is expected back before the grand jury in a few weeks. Detectives and a K-9 team searched Spicher`s property within the last two weeks. They seized her computer and telephones, and we`re going to show you DeDe Spicher in a second. There she is.
Neighbors say Spicher no longer lives in her condo. Spicher was working as a gardener near Kyron`s house the very day he vanished. Witnesses claim DeDe abruptly left work for 90 minutes and couldn`t be reached by cell phone. She claims she just forget her phone.
Her attorney says she is cooperating with authorities, and she`s reportedly going to be back before the grand jury in four to six weeks.
Victoria Taft, why so long? Why do we have to wait four to six weeks to hear from this woman?
TAFT: We are on slow and go right now. We went fast and furious, and everybody was code six radio silence in the cop parlance. And then all of a sudden, we`re iced out as the media. And now we are just seemingly going very, very slowly as they build their case and keep everyone else in the dark.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Leslie, North Carolina, your question or thought, ma`am?
CALLER: Hi, Jane. Thank you for taking my call.
I`m curious if the cell phones in question were acquired before or after Kyron went missing. And thank you for keeping his story out there, because we need to see justice for Kyron.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We do need justice for Kyron.
Mike Brooks, my understanding from "The Oregonian" is that these were given to her after Kyron went missing so that she could have conversations without investigators knowing. But I would assume that they`ve gotten their hands on these cell phone records by now and have figured out who she talked to.
BROOKS: They most likely have -- what kind of cell phones are we talking about? Well, you can buy these cell phones, as you know, Jane, everybody knows...
BROOKS: You can buy these cell phones at the convenience store, get money added to them. And it`s not on your regular cell phone bill.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But can you track those pings?
BROOKS: Yes, you can. Through the carrier, you can -- you will be able to trace it back.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. Well, I just wonder who is paying that cell phone bill. And what the heck are they thinking?
Fabulous panel, thank you so much. We`re going to stay on top of that case.
Charlie Sheen accused of assaulting his wife. Today he pleads guilty. So why isn`t he headed to jail?
Plus, a father and his three sons mowed down by an alleged drunk driver. It`s an unbelievable story. Why was that guy even behind the wheel? We`re going to hear from the devastated family and friends.
And we`re talking your calls on this. Give me a holler. Have you had an experience with a drunk driver? 1-877-JVM-SAYS.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANAIS MCCONNELL, VICTIM`S WIFE: Each morning she wakes up asking for daddy. I just don`t know what to say to her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NORMA VAZQUEZ, VICTIM`S NEIGHBOR: I was in shock when he told me what happened, when he told me his three sons are also killed, we couldn`t believe it.
You know, we have to be angry. Come on. This is somebody that`s been drinking that shouldn`t be on the road, was on the road, and this is what happened.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, two families completely shattered by a senseless, totally preventable tragedy. If you ever consider for even one moment driving drunk, remember this devastation.
A speeding driver who was allegedly drunk and high ran a red light Sunday morning in Florida. He slammed right into other car. And in one instant, Roy McConnell and his three sons were wiped out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOB CHOINSKI, WITNESS: It went airborne -- went airborne and nailed that sign and then dropped to the ground. It was a sound that, when you lifted your head, you knew it wasn`t going to be good.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Twenty-year-old Demetrius Jordan is charged with four counts of DUI manslaughter. The police report said he was drinking malt liquor and smoking marijuana before the crash. Looking at this guy`s driving record, you could well argue he should not have been on the road; he should not have had a license at all.
Jordan`s father is heartbroken, unable to explain his son`s deadly decision.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOMER JORDAN, SUSPECT`S FATHER: The choice is bad. That`s his choice. He`s a grown man. You know, I can`t tell him what to do and what not to do. I can only suggest and give him hope and faith that he can get better and do what he need to do. You know what I`m saying? Be a better man and a better person in this society. That`s all I can do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The McConnell men leave behind three widows, a girlfriend, and two young children. Astoundingly, despite their unimaginable grief, this family is already thinking about forgiveness.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BURLIN WEBSTER, FAMILY FRIEND: Their heart is just at peace. They don`t have any hate for everyone or any kind of vengeance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Straight out to my fantastic expert panel. But first to Laura Dean-Mooney, the national president of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
Laura, thank you for joining us. I know your own husband was tragically killed in 1991 by a drunk driver. And you went to the very same church as the father who was just mowed down in this most recent case. What is your reaction to this horrific massacre of four?
LAURA DEAN-MOONEY, PRESIDENT, MADD: Well, Jane, having been through this myself in 1991, as you mentioned, I was devastated once again when I heard the news that my friend, Roy McConnell, and his three sons had been mowed down senselessly in a 100 percent preventable crime.
This crash did not have to happen. It was not an accident. It was caused by a suspected drunk driver who made a choice to get in his car and drive after drinking and evidently ingesting weed, as well.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, and they found a can of malt liquor in his vehicle.
Here`s my big issue. Was this a moving disaster? Did the suspect`s history indicate a tragedy was right there on the horizon? Here`s his father.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JORDAN: He`s a decent boy. You know what I`m saying? You know, he`s decent. He just made wrong decisions.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But wait a second. Jordan`s driving record is scary. He was involved in a crash in St. Pete back in 2008 and another crash just two months ago. He has seven traffic citations, including careless driving and running a stop sign. Just days before the fatal crash, a request was made to the DMV to suspend his license. And again, in this case, witnesses say hey saw him run a red light at a high rate of speed.
Pam Bondi, former Florida state prosecutor, who is running for Florida attorney general, just how dangerous does a driver have to be to lose his license?
PAM BONDI, FORMER FLORIDA STATE PROSECUTOR: Well, this guy, Jane, it`s horrible. He shouldn`t have been on the street, just like you said.
The problem: all his crimes were civil infractions -- running a stop sign, careless driving. So none of them had risen to the level of a crime yet. But clearly, he shouldn`t have been driving. I mean, and he was going over 80 miles an hour, they estimate right now, in a 35-mile-an-hour zone and blew through a stop light and killed this innocent family. It`s horrible.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I`ve got to say, this family is showing a lot more grace than I might show in the same situation. This family really surprised all of us, especially I was just shocked when I heard that they had already talking about forgiveness, even before burying their beloved husbands, brothers and sons. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WEBSTER: This family here, wants to forgive. But what`s happening right now is hurt, pain, confusion, anger. That`s going to take some time to settle through.
AMY VOELKER, VICTIM`S WIFE: My husband Roy had extremely strong faith, and part of that faith was forgiveness. And I would hope that, at some point, we could all work towards that. But that`s a different process for everybody.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But Laura, as national president of MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, we all know that forgiveness sometimes can be a cover, well-intentioned, for suppressed anger or even denial. What do you think they`re going through, given that you lost your husband to a drunk driver?
DEAN-MOONEY: They are going through a state of -- they`re anaesthetized from the top of their head to the bottom of their feet. They`re just going through the motions. When you get horrific news like this, especially, in the McConnell case, when not one, not two, not three, but all four of them were wiped out in an instant, they are just functioning.
But I knew Roy McConnell, and I know that Roy`s family will follow his wishes and that his faith will be the example that they go by to, indeed, probably some day forgive this family. What`s really sad is that, 19 years after my crash, American families are still at risk to drunk driving, because we tolerate it and we allow it.
Fantastic panel, stay right where you are. More on this devastating crash. Why was this driver on the road?
Plus, Brittanee Drexel vanished from spring break more than a year ago. Tonight, could a new attempted kidnapping at the same resort lead cops to Brittanee? I`ll talk to her mom.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MCCONNELL: We didn`t know what was going on. Hours passed. We just sat on the couch, waiting for them to walk through the door. We later saw on the news there was a car accident, and four people died. We noticed the car was black, but we did not want to think it was their car.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lives shattered by an alleged drunk driver Sunday morning. Twenty-year-old Demetrius Jordan allegedly sped through a red light while drunk and high, killing Roy McConnell and his three sons. Those were the widows and girlfriends, gathering to talk about forgiveness. Unbelievable.
Gina, Ohio, your question or thought, ma`am?
CALLER: Yes, I just wanted to call and you had said he shouldn`t have been even driving. Because of his driving history, he shouldn`t have had a driver`s license. But people have their licenses suspended all the time. They`re going to drive if they`re going to drive, license or not.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, his wasn`t even suspended. I mean, that`s part of the problem.
You know, what struck me is that, Darren Kavinoky, cops found a 16- ounce can of Four Loco in the vehicle. That`s stronger than beer.
KAVINOKY: Yes. Well, clearly there`s -- it sounds like -- based on what`s been reported, that there`s an overwhelming case to be made against this person. I do have to say, the family of the victims obviously very spiritually evolved to be talking about forgiveness at this point.
You and I both know, Jane, that -- that resentment and bitterness is like taking poison in hopes that someone else dies. There`s no profit in that. And certainly, my hat is off to that family, and I certainly will keep them in my -- in my prayers.
But to the caller`s point, No. 1, enforcement is a problem, even among people whose licenses are suspended. And I would also point out that there`s got to be a sense of proportionality in our criminal justice system. It`s very easy in 20-20 hindsight to look back and say, well, this is somebody who shouldn`t have been on the road. But as the other panelists pointed out, the infractions that led up to this were -- it sounds like mere traffic infractions and so...
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, all right. But you know what the problem is? The problem is, Pam Bondi, according to MADD somebody`s killed by a drunk driver every 45 minutes. It`s the leading cause of accidental death in this country, although prescription drug abuse is creeping up on it. In 2008, almost 12,000 people died in DUI crashes. What the heck are we going to do about this problem, Pam?
BONDI: Jane, we see it all the time as prosecutors. This guy is facing 65 years in prison. Not only did he devastate and destroy the lives of that wonderful family but of his own family. And that`s what these people don`t get when they choose to drink and get behind the wheel of a car. And it`s got to stop. And they`re being locked up. And people just don`t get it. He could have called his father to pick him up, and he could have called a cab.
BROOKS: But as we know, when you`re going to drive, you`re going drive.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: When you`re drunk, you don`t reason. You don`t think logically.
BONDI: That`s right.
BROOKS: You don`t. You think you`re indestructible. And that`s the problem. And as Pam was saying, as Darren was saying, that`s the problem with this particular case. He had no other DUIs. He had no criminal charges. And he was about to be suspended.
Jane, there are so many drivers on the road right now in every major city that are just like this guy. And it`s got to stop.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s got to stop.
BONDI: Let`s hope.
DEAN-MOONEY: Fifty to 75 percent of drunk drivers continue to drive on a suspended license. We need to do something about it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Got to leave it right there.
Charlie Sheen up next. Did he get away with it?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Charlie Sheen let off the hook again. He pled guilty to third degree assault against his wife. But he`s not going to spend a single day in jail. Cops say he threatened her with a knife and now he is walking free and blowing kisses. Why isn`t Charlie locked up?
Massive developments in the search for Brittanee Drexel. This 17- year-old girl vanished during spring break more than a year ago. Tonight, there`s now been another attempted kidnapping at the very same beach resort. Could this suspect lead cops to Brittanee? I will talk live with Brittanee`s devastated mother.
Tonight, "Teflon" Charlie lives up to his nickname and gets a very sweet plea deal. Hollywood A-lister Charlie got a big fat "get out of jail free" card.
Charlie pleaded guilty to his domestic violence case admitting he assaulted his wife and he got a slap on the wrist. A cocky Sheen blew the crowd kisses as he sauntered into an Aspen courthouse in exchange for pleading guilty to 3rd degree assault; two more serious charges against him were dropped.
Sheen was sentenced to probation, 30 days in rehab and 36 hours of anger management. This is all stemming from that infamous alcohol-fueled fight he had with his wife Brooke, Christmas Day. Brooke told cops Charlie came after her with a knife and threatened to kill her.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
BROOKE MUELLER, CHARLIE SHEEN`S WIFE: My husband was had -- with a knife, and I fear for my life and he threatened me.
911 OPERATOR: 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 --
911 OPERATOR: Are there other people there? Does he still have the knife?
MUELLER: Yes, he still does.
911 OPERATOR: What is your name?
911 OPERATOR: And what`s your husband`s name?
MUELLER: It`s Charlie Sheen.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: A little hesitation there. Brooke dropped those charges and that is probably why Charlie got off so easy. But don`t worry. Rehab will not throw a wrench in Charlie`s lifestyle. He still is going to be the highest paid actor on television.
Sheen will be an out-patient at Promises Rehab in Malibu. He can still work on his sitcom, "Two and a Half Men" during the day then check in to treatment at night if he even goes.
Charlie knows he got off scot-free. As Sheen left court, he called his attorney a rock star and says he`s headed to Disneyland. Check this out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Charlie?
CHARLIE SHEEN, ACTOR: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You just got probation and 30 days in Malibu. What you are going do next?
SHEEN: Going to Disneyland.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s a pretty sweet deal your lawyer worked out for you.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you relieved Charlie?
SHEEN: Yale Galanter is a rock star.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Straight out to my fantastic expert panel: we have Charlie Sheen`s lawyer on the phone but I want to begin with syndicated radio host, Carlos Diaz. Carlos, what is the latest on this one?
CARLOS DIAZ, SYNDICATED RADIO HOST: I`ll tell you what, Yale Galanter is a rock star and I think Lindsay Lohan needed her in the courtroom; maybe Lindsay wouldn`t have served any jail time whatsoever.
You know what, I`m a big fan of Charlie Sheen. I think he`s one of the most honest actors in Hollywood. But even I think he was a little cocky in court saying, hey guilty as charged your honor. Walking out and saying I`m going to Disneyland, blowing kissing to the crowd and calling his lawyer is rock star. He is not even going to serve time because he has already done the time at Promises.
He is going to go in on August 23rd, he`s going to spend a few seconds there and then he`s going to be gone. He has already done his anger management class. The only thing I can think of is the judge and the prosecutors in this case must be big fans of "Two and a Half Men" because he is going to get off scot-free in this instance and not miss a day of filming. He is back on the set right now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Is this star struck justice? Charlie -- you just heard it from Carlos -- may not even have to go to rehab. After the Christmas day fight, Charlie`s lawyers say he checked into rehab for 93 days. So he could get time served. He could check in and check right out.
Yale Galanter, you are Charlie Sheen`s attorney, thank you for talking to us from Aspen. Is this true? Could he just go to the rehab and say hi there and then leave? Ditto for anger management?
YALE GALANTER, CHARLIE SHEEN`S LAWYER (via telephone): The court was that the Promises Rehab facility has the authority to execute and administer the sentence. In the same way the L.A. sheriff administered the 90-day sentence for Lindsay Lohan and giving her 13 days, Promises will evaluate the credit time served, good time, game time and make their own judgment. They have that authority.
We have no deal with Promises. We haven`t been promised anything by them. And when Charlie does report, they will make an assessment and do what they see fit.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dylan Howard, you`re senior executive editor of RadarOnline, do you think this is superstar justice?
DYLAN HOWARD, SENIOR EXECUTIVE EDITOR, RADARONLINE: Well, very much it certainly does point to that, Jane. Good evening to you.
This is in every sense of the word a sweetheart deal for Charlie Sheen because not so long ago, he was facing jail time. Everyone expected at the last court appearance before a plea deal collapsed that he was bound to go inside and serve a term.
Perhaps it`s the good lawyering of Yale Galanter but now all of a sudden he is almost effectively a free man. Let`s not forget, he was accused of putting a gun too -- not a gun, I should say -- a knife to the throat of his soon to be ex-wife, Brooke Mueller. Very serious stuff and it seems most certainly in the court of public opinion that it is a light sentence.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I mean I got tell you, Tanya Young Williams, we`re delighted to have you with us tonight. You`re the estranged wife of ex-NBA star Jason Williams who is currently serving time for the deadly shooting of his hired driver.
You filed for divorce last year and you said your estranged husband was verbally and emotional abusive; that he threatened to kill. That`s the same charge that was originally made in this case against Charlie Sheen. Why would Brooke say, I want the charges dropped, I want it to all go away?
TANYA YOUNG WILLIAMS, FORMER WIFE OF JASON WILLIAMS: Well, that`s -- there could be a lot of reasons and I cannot speak for Brooke. One of them might be her children. One of them might be that she does want it to go away and she can move on with her life.
The danger in this that -- how many times was it that Nicole Brown Simpson was --- called the police because O.J. Simpson threatened her or hurt her. And then it was years later, she was found dead. Nicole Brown Simpson said in her diary that she was afraid that O.J. would kill her but because of his celebrity he would get off.
This is what is happening today. And it`s very disturbing. It`s very, very disturbing. It is celebrity justice. And Charlie Sheen there is no contrition, there is no remorse. He is moving on and as if nothing has ever happened. And Brooke is damaged.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Robin Sax, former prosecutor -- ok, he was originally arrested on suspicion of menacing, 2nd degree assault, criminal mischief, domestic violence. The menacing charge alone could have landed him in prison for two to 8 years. Unfortunately or fortunately, for whatever reason, his wife basically cut the prosecution off at the knee saying, I don`t want to prosecute.
ROBIN SAX, FORMER PROSECUTOR: You know, I know that`s what the wife did. But I don`t like to -- I choose not to blame the victim. The prosecutor, a good prosecutor, a skilled prosecutor, will put a recanting witness on the stand if necessary, will protect the victim if that victim does not want to protect themselves.
And this is exactly what is going on in Oksana`s case right now with Mel Gibson where she had to make sure that she did her own investigation in order to get people to believe her. Now we have the prosecutor believing her and she`s undermining the process. It`s frustrating but it`s incumbent to the prosecutor to take the bull by the horn here and hold Charlie Sheen accountable anyway.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: At least sentence him to something he hasn`t done, your honor. Don`t sentence him to something that he`s already done. That is like telling me, you don`t have to go to work today because you already went to work today.
Charlie Sheen has a history of domestic disputes with his wives and girlfriends. In the early 90s, he accidentally shot his then-girlfriend Kelly Preston in the arm. In 1996 he allegedly abused girlfriend Britney (INAUDIBLE) and pleaded no contest to that charge. His relationship with his ex-wife Denise Richards publicly imploded after she filed for divorce while she was pregnant with their 2nd daughter. She accused him of threatening her.
I have to get back to Yale Galanter. You`re a excellent lawyer, sir. If I was on trouble, I`d be getting you on the cell phone. But you got a look at this history and say, this guy`s got issues.
GALANTER: Listen, Jane, the kind words are very humbling. And I listened to all your guests but nobody knew the case better than the two prosecutors in this case. Martin Beeson and Arnie Mordkin are fine, fine lawyers.
There were two problems. One, Brooke was definitely a reluctant witness. But the major problem wasn`t Brooke because they could have forced her to testify. The lead officer in this case, the police officer who is in charge of gathering all the evidence, taking all the witness statements was separated from the Aspen Police Department after the December 25th incident because of official misconduct. She reached the civil settlement with the city of Aspen $10,000.
That was the major problem; they had no lead police officer in the case.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Dylan Howard, I got say, TMZ`s reporting as well as others that this case is closed and they are ready for divorce. My question to you is, could the divorce have a lot more to do with this than meets the eye in terms of money, possibly? I mean obviously, divorce involves separation of property and what`s going to happen to the kids. If she knew that was hanging over her head, maybe that was what pressured her to back out of this.
HOWARD: Well, Jane at this stage, the pair haven`t said that they are going towards divorce but it certainly seems that way. They seem to have come to an understanding over the liquidation of their assets.
Interestingly enough and it would be a good question to put to Yale, Yale also represented Brooke in this instance. He then represented Charlie Sheen. So on one hand he is representing a woman who is a reluctant witness and then on the other hand, he`s representing the man who is, of course, the subject of this probe. And some are suggesting that that is perhaps a conflict of interest.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well Yale --
GALANTER: That`s a great question. On December 26th, I was on the "LARRY KING" show and I was authorized to tell the world that Brooke wanted all charges dropped against Charlie. And she didn`t want them dropped because of money, because of divorce or anything of this sort.
She wanted the charges dropped because Charlie will always be the father of her children. And she wanted family unity. Period, end of story -- it had nothing to do with money.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well --
GALANTER: When the plea deal started getting rough, you know, Brooke authorized me to help Charlie obviously with his consent. You know there are lawyers on the panel, unless everybody can sense, including the prosecutors and the judge I couldn`t have done what I did --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I got to leave it. Got to leave it right there.
Yale, thank you for being a good sport but I`ve got to say, like they said in Chinatown, forget about it Jake it`s Hollywood.
All right, a beautiful young woman vanishes on spring break. Now one year later cops in Myrtle Beach finally may have a break in the case. I`m going to talk one on one with Brittanee Drexel`s mother next.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, new hope for the family of a young woman who went missing during spring break at Myrtle Beach. Cops have a man in custody for another attempted kidnapping that happened near the same hotel where Brittanee Drexel vanished.
And Brittanee`s family say they know who he is. Timothy Shawn Taylor turned himself in to police last Wednesday. He says he heard the cops were looking for him. As a matter of fact, Taylor`s name came up in the investigation into Drexel`s disappearance a while ago. He was questioned but cops let him go.
This is the last time anyone saw 17-year-old Brittanee Drexel as she walked out of a Myrtle Beach hotel in April of 2009.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAWN DREXEL, BRITTANEE`S MOTHER: It`s been horrible, because I don`t know where she is. I don`t know if she`s alive. I don`t know if somebody maybe picked her up.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What a nightmare. Taylor says cops have the wrong man but he is charged in this latest attempted kidnapping -- with attempted kidnapping and first degree assault and battery. Again this is the most recent in case. He is being held tonight on $70,000 bond.
Could he know what happened to Brittanee Drexel? Call me 1-877-JVM- SAYS.
Straight out to my very special guest: Dawn Drexel, Brittanee`s mother. First of all, thank to you Dawn so much for being here. We -- our heart breaks for you on what you`ve been through; we know that you have been living a nightmare since spring break of 2009. We want to help solve your daughter`s case. We want to find out what happened to your precious daughter.
What makes you think --
D. DREXEL: You`re welcome. Thanks, Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- what makes you think this Timothy Shawn Taylor is involved with Brittanee`s disappearance?
D. DREXEL: Well, we heard the name before. With the attempted abduction in Myrtle Beach that happened last Wednesday, it`s the same area where Brittanee went missing. So I mean there could be a possibility that he could be involved in Brittanee`s abduction also.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well and the other thing is that apparently Taylor, this suspect, lives a mile away from where Brittanee`s cell phone was found?
D. DREXEL: That is correct.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What do you know about that?
D. DREXEL: That is correct. He does not live -- according to what I know -- he does not live that far from -- from that tower where her cell phone last pinged.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And apparently Taylor was last seen driving a blue van similar to the one that was reported seen driving away after your daughter vanished?
D. DREXEL: That -- that -- I am not too sure of. I didn`t hear that they have seen that blue van before. I`ve heard of a van but I`m not sure if that`s the same van that they were speaking about in reference to Shawn Taylor driving that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Seventeen year-old Brittanee Drexel, the daughter of this woman we are talking to, this brave and courageous woman tonight, vanished while on spring break, in Myrtle Beach, April, 2009. She was there on the sly.
Brittanee`s mom told her, you can`t go -- Brittanee went anyway. Young kids will do that kind of thing. Brittanee was last seen right here leaving the Blue Water Hotel on April 25th. She had been visiting with a group of young men from her hometown in Rochester, New York.
Now, here is what really gets me, Mike Brooks, this suspect that they just arrested and accused of trying to kidnap somebody in the same area, where she was last seen. He`s got a brother. His brother in 1998 was charged with the abduction and murder of a 19-year-old girl whose body was found in the same area where Brittanee`s cell phone last pinged near where these guys live.
MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Jane, this is not a coincidence. I`m telling you that. And law enforcement doesn`t think so either. They need to dig down, find out from his -- do -- get a subpoena.
Find out what his cell phone pings were doing that day. Where he was, he better to be able to have account -- and his brother -- they better be able to account for their whereabouts when Brittanee disappeared. Because Jane, do you think this was the first time that he`s -- he`s done this?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t know.
BROOKS: Absolutely not.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: This guy has got a rap sheet a mile long.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: In the latest incident which happened July 21st, a 20-year-old woman said two men grabbed her and tried to push her into a van. She fought back and got away. Cops say the man under arrest for that attempted kidnapping -- you`re looking at him here -- Timothy Shawn Taylor has a rap sheet that includes 30 offenses, including domestic violence, DUI and giving false information to police.
When cops searched his house after his arrest they found a stolen truck. Now Taylor is saying, well, I`m married with children. I didn`t kidnap anyone.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what, Robin Sax, this -- this smells bad.
SAX: It does. Mike Brooks says it so well. I mean, this isn`t a coinkydink (ph) ladies and gentleman. I mean, you`re -- you`ve got all of the makings for a -- a very viable suspect here. And the part that`s so outrageous is that this is a name that`s been floated around before why haven`t those pings being detected that Mike`s suggesting done a long time ago.
Why don`t we have surveillance cameras, why haven`t we positively ID them? Why did we wait until this guy turns himself in to find him?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you. And that`s my big issue tonight, was this a missed opportunity?
Brittanee`s family, we`re talking to her mom tonight, say cops interviewed this guy, Timothy Shawn Taylor, back when Brittanee`s first disappeared but they let him go.
Brittanee`s dad says this arrest is no coincidence.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHAD DREXEL, FATHER OF BRITTANEE DREXEL: Shawn lives in an area about a mile away from Brittanee`s cell phone -- last known cell phone activity - - a mile away.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Once again, this guy is from McClellanville, South Carolina. That`s the last place Brittanee`s cell phone pings registered and where a pair of her sunglasses were reportedly found and Taylor`s brother was one of five men once charged in the death of 19-year-old Shannon`s McConaughey. The men were later released for lack of evidence but Shannon`s body was dumped within ten miles of where Brittanee`s cell phone pings were last detected.
Dawn, you know, if we`re connecting the dots here, why didn`t cops connect the dots?
DAWN DREXEL, MOTHER OF BRITTANEE DREXEL: I`m not sure. I know that they are doing everything that they possibly can. Especially in Myrtle Beach, you know, they haven`t had a missing person`s case there. They are doing as much as they can along with the state.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: More on the other side of the break. Right on the other side.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MYRISSA DREXEL, BRITTANEE DREXEL`S SISTER: Sissy (ph), just please come home. I really want you home. I miss her saying "sis" to me all the time. I miss her being there after school. When she comes home from cosmetology, she`s home. I miss her being just around and I just want her back.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: That poor little girl; Brittanee Drexel`s little sister begging for her big sister to come home. Brittanee vanished during spring break last year. Her cell phone reportedly found 43 miles away in McClelanville, South Carolina.
Jamie, Kentucky, your question or thought?
JAMIE, KENTUCKY (via telephone): Yes, I was just saying, I prayed for this little girl and I know other people have prayed for this little girl. And the lord is not going to let this man get away with hurting another child. And I pray for that mother.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We all pray for Dawn Drexel and her family. This is domestic terrorism. The mother of the Tennessee woman -- the 20-year-old Tennessee woman who survived the recent attempted kidnapping suffered a heart attack and is in intensive care. And that 20-year-old girl has been unable to sleep since the incident and she`s the lucky one because she got out alive.
This is domestic terrorism, Mike Brooks.
MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: You know what Jane. I tell you, I haven`t worked terrorism before. This is the closest thing I see to it. And this guy -- we can`t show his guy, Taylor`s picture enough because I guarantee you, people in Myrtle Beach know this guy. If people have -- something happened to you and you see this guy, please let law enforcement know because I guarantee you, with all his prior charges, he has probably tried to do this before. I guarantee it, Jane.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dawn, what is your reaction. What is your reaction to the news that they interviewed this guy shortly after your daughter disappeared?
D. DREXEL: They didn`t really say too much in the beginning about him. As far as -- as far as Brittanee`s abduction -- at least I don`t remember. It was quite some time ago. I was in the police department every single day that we were down in Myrtle Beach for the 2 and 1/2 months that I stayed down there. And I know that there was a lot of people brought up during the investigation. Trying to put them all together is very hard for me because I`m very, very focused on finding my daughter. I`m going to stop at nothing to find out what happened to her.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What have you been through in the past year? I don`t think anybody has any comprehension. I try to understand what must it be like and I don`t think my imagination can even come close to what you have been experiencing. Can you try to put it in words?
D. DREXEL: The past year, it`s like going through hell. It`s the worst thing you could ever go through. I mean you bring your babies into this world. You love them unconditionally, and you know to think that you might not see her pretty little face again, it kills me. It kills me. And it hurts her brother and sister. And just with, you know, with her brother and sister, it`s very difficult for them and it`s very difficult for me to see them as sad as they there, you know, with their sister that has gone missing.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We have to leave it right there. But I want to say, our hearts goes out to you and we want justice for you and your family.
You`re watching ISSUES.
D. DREXEL: Thank you.