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ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Pirates Kills Four Americans; Girl Kidnapped from Mall?; Was Missing Mom Murdered?

Aired February 22, 2011 - 19:00:00   ET

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


(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST (voice-over): Tonight a stunning end to a horrific hostage situation on the high seas. After holding them captive for days, pirates execute two American couples who were yachting around the world. U.S. forces were desperately trying to rescue them when they were murdered. Why did pirates suddenly shoot them in the middle of negotiations?

Plus, a man turns his back for seconds, and his niece vanishes. One hour later, the 12-year-old girl calls her mom from a private number, saying a woman named Nancy took her, but then the phone goes dead. Where is Priscilla Ristick?

And a 15-year-old girl who says she was raped by a U.S. Army soldier recounts her nightmare and demands an investigation. Why was her alleged rapist able to escape the clutches of Army personnel, leaving her in terror for her life? I`ll talk to this teen tonight.

Then the Foxy Knoxy movie debut. Seattle beauty, Amanda Knox, convicted of murdering her roommate in a drug-fuelled sex game while studying abroad in Italy. Now the inevitable TV movie has sparked an uproar among her supporters. Why are they so upset?

ISSUES starts now.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

NINA CROSSLAND, NIECE OF PHYLLIS MACAY: My aunt was not dead when the Navy SEALs arrived on the ship. She had been shot. She was not dead at that time, and they did try to save her, but they were unsuccessful.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Breaking news tonight: carnage on the high seas. Four Americans murdered while living out their dreams. These two couples were on an epic sailing trip around the world when they were hijacked by pirates off of Somalia on Friday.

Jean and Scott Adam owned the yacht, appropriately named The Quest. These pictures are from SVQuest.com. Now, their friends, Bob Riggle and Phyllis Macay, were also with them.

The U.S. Navy negotiated for their release for three very intense days. Today, suddenly, gunshots ring out. That prompts U.S. Special Ops teams to storm the yacht, and what they find is unbelievable. They find these four Americans, barely alive. All of them had been shot at close range, executed.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CROSSLAND: We understood that if they got to shore, it was going to be a really bad situation. We also understood that the Navy was doing their best to prevent them from getting to shore, and that gave us a little bit more hope. Unfortunately, there was commotion on the ship that didn`t involve the Navy at the time that started all of this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Why did the victims sail into these dangerous waters? And exactly what happened on that boat? Why did all this turn into a bloodbath?

Straight out to Pete Demetriou, field reporter for KNX 1070.

You are all over this story. I know you`ve been to Marina Del Rey where I lived for 18 years. I`ve been to that marina countless times. I`ve been to the yacht club that the Adams were members of and hung out at many, many times for weddings and other events. This feels not like something happening on the other side of the world, but something very close to us, Pete Demetriou. What is the very latest?

PETE DEMETRIOU, FIELD REPORTER, KNX 1070: At this particular point you have people in the Santa Monica, Marina Del Rey area who are very, very shaken by these events.

The Adam family were members of the Del Rey Yacht Club for roughly 10 years. Scott had retired in 2004, and he and Jean decided they were going to go around the world, literally, if you will call it, on a mission. They were handing out Bibles and spreading the word, and that was part of the special nature of what they were, according to Monsignor Torgison (ph) over at the Santa Monica St. Monica`s Church, where they were long-time parishioners.

Prayers were said for them this morning at a mass. The audience there, the parishioners completely shocked by the news. At the Del Rey Yacht Club, again, a similar state of shock. People who had known them for years said they were qualified sailors. They were excellent people. They brought a light into the world and, indeed, in doing what they loved, spreading the word and also sailing, it was a perfect world for them, at least until this happened off the Horn of Africa.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Again, I feel like I may have met these people because I lived right there for 18 years in Marina Del Rey, and I used to know many people who owned boats there. And we all went to that Del Rey Yacht Club for weddings and other events, and these people -- what, he was in -- he was 70, and his wife, Jean, all they wanted to do was live out their dream, a retirement dream of going around the world. And they end up executed, executed, by pirates off the coast of Somalia.

Now, when westerners travel to dangerous parts of the world, of course, they can be taking their lives into their hands. Why did the victims take such a dangerous route?

They had been sailing with a cluster of other yachts from Phuket, Thailand. They headed to the southern tip of India. After that they decided to split from the other yachts and head to Oman. They planned to sail through the Suez Canal and out to the Mediterranean, but, first it was off to Djibouti for fuel. That`s the stop that took them near the pirate- infested Somali waters.

Jean Adam blogged, "I have no idea what will happen in these ports."

Here`s a friend of the Adams.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SCOTT STOLNITZ, FRIEND OF JEAN AND SCOTT ADAM: These people are victims. They were in international waters peacefully going about their own business, and basically a bunch of criminals took them over for what they freely admit is economic gain. They became the target of opportunity.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, they still could have had the trip of a lifetime without putting their lives in danger. Wendy Murphy, my heart goes out to them and their families, but there have been so many instances here of sailors being taken hostage in these waters. If they knew the risk, which they have spoken about, why do you think they decided to sail into some of the most dangerous waters anywhere in the world?

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Well, I don`t know. You know, I might not go and you might not go and is it does seem dopey, but you know what I`m going to say, Jane. We`ve had this same conversation I don`t know how many times in similar circumstances.

I don`t care if they rode in these waters with a big old flag that says "Pirates suck." You know, I don`t care. I don`t care what they did and how offensive or nice they were, if they were doing the Bible stuff or if they were just being creepy people. There`s nothing to justify this behavior.

And I really wish we would stop calling them pirates, because it makes me think of Peter Pan, which is so sweet. They are thugs, terrorists, murderers.

MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Terrorists.

MURPHY: I mean, the Mob. Organized crime at its worst. We really need to stop romanticizing. In some ways, I think, we are responsible for why people think they can go there, because it`s only pirates. We`re only going to bump into Captain Hook.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Mike Brooks, tell us what happened. There were four naval vessels approximately that were tailing this yacht after it was taken hostage.

MURPHY: Right.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tell us what went down.

BROOKS: Well, all I can tell you, having known some of the people that were involved in the last incident such as this, Jane, back with the Maersk Alabama, back just before in 2009. This is very similar. There were negotiations ongoing. They were trailing this -- they were trailing the yacht. There were a number of -- a number of these terrorists who were on board.

And negotiations were very tenuous. It`s very, very tough negotiating between the yacht, the naval vessel, and other folks back here in the United States, and the negotiations were ongoing. That`s why the Navy had decided not to go ahead and do a preemptive strike that the Navy SEALs are -- you know, that`s their bread and butter.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sure. They did the sniper attack the last time.

BROOKS: And they did -- right...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And they had -- they had high-powered rifles, and they took out the pirates, and that`s how they saved the guy the last time.

BROOKS: That`s exactly right, but in this particular case the negotiations, they seemed to have been going along fairly well, and, you know, as a former negotiator and as an operator, you know, and worked on a joint terrorism task force, I can tell you, as things are going well, that`s good. Time is on your side. But I guarantee you they weren`t going to let them go into Djibouti. I mean, and they had expressed concern about going into Djibouti. But you know...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Mike, let me say this, OK? Apparently, a grenade or some kind of projectile is fired by the pirates, and it misses the Navy vessel. Then I understand that, after that, what happened was that some of the pirates go to the top of the deck of the yacht with their hands up. Then gunshots break out, and that`s when the Special Ops team jumps onto the yacht. That`s when they find the four Americans dying after having been executed at close range, and they also find two pirates dead.

So what I`m trying to figure out is, oh, what happened here? Was there some kind of argument between the pirates as to how to handle this over money issues, and they were kind of like split? Some of them decided they were going to surrender. The other ones ended up shooting the Americans.

BROOKS: That`s what it -- exactly what it sounded like. And that -- that`s similar to what happened in the last incident on the Maersk Alabama. There were some that wanted to surrender and give up. The others said no. And then they went ahead and made an emergency assault. That`s what happened in this particular case, too.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want to go to my big issue. Why kill them? Some experts say these pirates are sometimes not likely to hurt Americans because they`re not going to get any ransom money if they do. But we can`t forget these are desperate people with very little to lose.

Somalia is one of the poorest and most violent nations in the world. There`s basically no government there. And that`s one of the reasons that a lot of these pirates have been forced out of fishing. Their livelihoods have, according to some claims, been destroyed by unregulated fishing and toxic waste dumping by European countries and Asian countries, who have been using their waters as a dumping ground, because there is basically no government here to stop any kind of toxic waste dumping.

This kind of violence is absolutely unacceptable. There is never any excuse for killing.

BROOKS: Jane, there`s...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But we also have to understand that, when you`re sailing into these waters or going anywhere into a foreign country, we don`t know all the political dynamics. We don`t know all the history, and we don`t know why some people might have a murderous resentment against us. It`s something to keep in mind.

I`m going to give Wendy Murphy the last word.

MURPHY: I think you have two quick things. No. 1, since we do know this, how about bringing a machine gun, if you really feel the urge to float your yacht there.

And, you know, I`d like to see an international law enforcement effort put -- you know, kind of a sting boat there. Let them jump on board, and we can give them the bubonic plague the next time they try this. I`m sick of being so passive about this. And, you know, we`re not making a difference. The stories are always about people dying.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But also, let`s try to find out now who is dumping toxic waste in those waters so that the...

BROOKS: It has nothing to do with this, though, Jane. You`re talking apples and oranges.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It does because...

BROOKS: No, it doesn`t. No, it doesn`t. Let`s go back to Mogadishu. These are the same kind of people.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Because these waters are being turned into a toxic waste dump, and...

BROOKS: "Black Hawk Down." Remember that?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: If you could fish there, you might not turn to crime. I think it`s something we have to think about. We have to put this in a political context, as well. It`s horrible. It`s terrible.

DEMETRIOU: Put it into a monetary context.

BROOKS: Thank you.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s awful, but it`s also important to understand the entire picture.

BROOKS: That`s the almighty dollar.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you, wonderful panel.

Now, the last time Danielle Varado`s family say they saw her was when she left her mom and her home to go see her angry husband. What happened to this mom? I will talk to her distraught mom next.

Also, a 12-year-old girl vanishes. An hour later she calls her mom, saying a woman named Nancy snatched her. Then the phone goes dead. Why on earth wasn`t an Amber Alert issued? It wasn`t. We`re taking your calls on this mysterious disappearance: 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JULIA RISTICK, PRISCILLA`S MOTHER: I told them why did you get in with her in the van? OK. "Because she offered me money. She was going to cash a check." Your money to buy food.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: America is becoming an addict nation. We`re brainwashed into buying more stuff we don`t need while we drown in debt. Do you really want to live this way? If the answer is no, you`ll want to read "Addict Nation."

VELEZ-MITCHELL: My new book, "Addict Nation," available online now. I talk about our culture`s addiction to violence and crime and what we can do together to change that. Check out AddictNation.org or just go to Amazon.com. Read "Addict Nation" and find out how we can counteract our nation`s addiction to crime.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RISTICK: Please bring her back, please. I want my baby back.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, a mother`s worst nightmare. A 12-year-old girl vanishes, disappears from a Georgia strip mall, so why isn`t there an Amber Alert? Tonight the answer will shock you.

Priscilla Ristick, this little 12 year old, she was standing outside selling flowers with her uncle last Sunday when he went inside to a pizza joint to use the restroom. When he came out, Priscilla was gone, completely missing.

Witnesses told cops Priscilla was pushed into a white van driven by an adult female. When the police tried to get an Amber Alert issued, and the state said no, because there`s no sign Priscilla was taken by force. Really? She`s a 12-year-old pushed into a van, and she`s visiting from Las Vegas. She doesn`t even live in Georgia normally. What more do they want? I say if a stranger takes a child, then it`s by force.

Plus, Priscilla doesn`t even live in Georgia, as I mentioned. OK. She doesn`t know anyone in the area. Now, here is Priscilla`s uncle.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOEY THOMPSON, PRISCILLA`S UNCLE: It was seconds. It was seconds. By the time I got the pizza, she wasn`t there no more.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Seconds count. Priscilla`s mom says her daughter then called home about an hour after she disappeared and the little girl said she was with a woman named Nancy. And then suddenly the phone goes dead, and the phone, there`s no number that you can see. The number is blocked.

This little girl, look at this beautiful girl, missing tonight. She`s only 12. She`s 4 foot tall, 95 pounds. This little girl should not be out there alone. Every second counts. Let`s find her. 1-877-JVM-SAYS if you know anything or have any theory on this.

Straight out to Mike Brooks, HLN law enforcement analyst. You have talked to the cops handling this case. Why in the world isn`t there an Amber Alert for little Priscilla?

BROOKS: Well, I guarantee you that Gwinnett County police, they wish there was an Amber Alert, but it`s up -- in this particular state, it`s up to the Georgia Crime Information Center, which is part of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. They`re the ones that make up all the criteria and the ones who put out the Amber Alert for the state of Georgia.

And right now it`s just a missing child, both a GCIC and the National Crime Information Center, NCIC that goes to cops all over the country. Why? Because they can`t say for sure that it`s an abduction, but cops are thinking it`s an abduction.

You know, I mean, it`s -- if she was forced into a van, why not put this little girl`s picture up here? You know, Gwinnett police have called the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. You know, they`re on the case, but no Amber Alert as of yet. I think there should be, and so do a lot of cops I talked to.

MICHELLE SIGONA, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER: Jane, I can confirm. I spoke with Corporal Jake Smith at 5:30 this evening. He did tell me that they did submit this case back to the Georgia crime information center and the NCIC database to try to get this Amber Alert active and moving forward. He does definitely believe that it should be an Amber Alert, No. 1.

Number two, they are investigating this case as an abduction, even though she is only listed as a missing child. In addition...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know what? Let me say this: this is a crock. The cops are right. We`re right. You be the judge. Does Priscilla`s case justify an Amber Alert? Of course.

Here`s the criteria. Law enforcement needs to confirm the abduction. Is the child in imminent danger? Is there sufficient descriptive information? Is the child younger than 17? Yes to all the above. She was pushed -- pushed -- into a white van driven by a strange woman, and then this strange woman named Nancy calls her -- she call her mom on this woman`s phone. And then she says -- the mom says call the cops, and then the phone gets hung up. Give me a break here, Wendy Murphy.

MURPHY: I`m -- I`ve got to -- I`ve got to tell you, Jane, to me it sounds like there`s more to this story because it`s so irrational. Why would you not put this case in Amber Alert, and the only thing that makes sense to me is that cops know something they`re not telling. And that may not be true, but it`s the only explanation. Why would you not do it? What, do they have such a rash on Amber Alerts they can`t squeeze this case in?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s also in favor of the Amber Alert. The Georgia Crime Information Center that are all messed up. Hang in there. We`re back.

Also, a 15-year-old girl says she was raped by a U.S. soldier.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, the escalating war on women tears apart a Texas family. Twenty-seven-year-old mother Danielle Alvarado vanished just over a year ago. Her heart-broken mom joins me tonight, desperate for answers.

The night Danielle disappeared, she told her mom she was afraid to go home to her husband. She had reported him for domestic violence in the past, but Danielle told her mom if she didn`t return, she`d face far worse punishment from him. That was the last her mom ever saw her.

So where are the cops in all of this? For months they told Danielle`s family, "Oh, she`ll come back eventually. She probably ran off with some guy." Really?

Straight out to Balynnda Dillard, Danielle`s devastated mother.

Balynnda, thank you so much for joining us. Our hearts go out to you. Your son-in-law`s boss says that she has a theory as to what may have happened to your daughter. What do you know about that?

BALYNNDA DILLARD, DANIELLE`S MOTHER (via phone): She is telling me that she knows what happened. She`s very sympathetic about it. She took me into her office, held my hand, told me that I need to know what happened to my daughter.

She proceeded to tell me that the night that she went home from church that night, that she and him had gotten into an argument. It got physical. He choked her, and he didn`t mean to hurt her, but it got a little too far, and he didn`t mean to do it, but he did it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, first of all, I want to emphasize that there are no suspects in this case, and there`s not even a person of interest. And we invite anybody, including the missing woman`s husband, to come on the show and tell their side of the story.

We have been reaching out to police repeatedly for a comment, and despite our repeated attempts to reach law enforcement, we have not gotten any response. They are completely unresponsive to us. They`re also invited on if they decide to become responsive.

Now, as you can see, Danielle, a very petite woman: 5 feet tall, 95 pounds, hazel eyes, a tattoo on her right shoulder and another one on the top of her foot with the letters "DSA."

Balynnda, you, apparently, have paid to have your own cadaver dog come search Danielle`s home. Did you get any results out of that?

DILLARD: Yes, ma`am, I did. It did confirm the story that I was told by his boss, and he `s a very highly trained special scent dog that I flew in from Maine. Not just a cadaver dog. So he is very trained in this matter into cold-case scents.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What have police told you, because, I mean, you`re not a law enforcement investigator. You obviously have a vested interest in finding your precious daughter. And I understand that. But why are you doing all this? What are the cops doing?

DILLARD: I would like to know that myself. They have kind of stepped back and let me do the work. I`ve taken the lead. I`ve done basically all the footwork and talked to a lot of the people. I don`t know what they have to say about it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. What is the law enforcement agency you`ve been trying to get in touch with? Is it the Wichita Falls Police Department?

DILLARD: Yes, ma`am.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. So Wichita Falls Police Department, this lady is saying you`re not doing anything to find her daughter and that she`s forced to be her own private detective. We`d love to hear from you.

This beautiful woman is missing, and it`s been more than a year now. Something is very, very wrong. You have no suspects, no persons of interest, but you can continue to look for her, and I think that`s something you should be doing. And so, please tell us exactly what you are doing, law enforcement.

Ma`am, thank you so much. We`re going to stay on this case.

Next, a 15-year-old girl says she was raped by a soldier, and you won`t believe what happened next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The 15-year-old girl who says she was raped by a U.S. Army soldier recounts her nightmare and demands an investigation. Why was her alleged rapist able to escape the clutches of Army personnel, leaving her in terror for her life? I`ll talk to this teen tonight.

Then the Foxy Knoxy movie debut: Seattle beauty, Amanda Knox convicted of murdering her roommate in a drug-fuelled sex game while studying abroad in Italy. Now the inevitable TV movie has sparked an uproar among her supporters. Why are they so upset?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAYMEE, ALLEGED RAPE VICTIM: I was living in fear because Daniel was out there somewhere. I know what it feels like, and I don`t want any other family or any other girl to have to go through this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight one family`s horrific nightmare after an accused rapist who just happens to be a U.S. Army private slips through the military`s fingers and escapes, leaving the young woman he allegedly raped fearing for her life.

Twenty-year-old Army private Daniel Brazelton office the run for a week before finally being taken into custody in Daytona Beach, Florida, but this was a week of hell for the alleged victim, 15-year-old Jaymee, while police searched for him, she didn`t even find out Brazelton had escaped until the L.A. County sheriff called. The Army did not bother to call her. To make matters even worse, Brazelton was posting sick photos showing his guns on his Facebook page and writing about going to prison like it was no big deal.

Jaymee was terrified. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAYMEE: His Facebook postings, his pictures just all of that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, it`s HLN policy not to identify rape victims unless they identify themselves, which Jaymee decided to do. Brazelton was in custody in Georgia and was being transported from jail to a medical facility because he had some kind of pain, allegedly when he escaped from the van and ran into the woods.

How did he get free? Is this another case of the Army not taking rape seriously?

Straight out to famed victims` rights attorney Gloria Allred. Gloria, you represent Jaymee in this matter. She is a very brave girl coming forward like this and telling her story. What are your concerns and questions with the U.S. Army`s handling of this man? What are your questions about how he escaped?

GLORIA ALLRED, VICTIMS` RIGHTS ATTORNEY: Well, I have a lot of questions about it. First of all, he was in the custody of the sheriff in Georgia. He had waived extradition. He was supposed to be coming back soon to Los Angeles County where he would be arraigned, and the L.A. County sheriff was going to be going to get him from the jail in Georgia, but instead he was removed by the U.S. Military, the Army, taken for medical treatment.

He was allowed to use his cell phone while he was at the doctor, while he is under arrest, while he is awaiting extradition on a charge of rape of a minor. We have two postings to his Facebook page while he is there at the doctor. Why was the Army allowing him to use his cell phone? Did he have handcuffs on? Did he have handcuffs on in the van when he escaped? These are questions we need to have the answers to.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Now, there are some photos on this guy`s Facebook page. Again, this is U.S. Army private, right? They`re simply shocking.

ALLRED: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Take a look at this. Private Brazelton is an expert marksman, and he posted a photo of what appears to be a staged execution of some female. He also bragged about getting his silencer next week, hopefully. He has a gun on the Facebook page posted.

And while he was on the run, the victim, Jaymee, was able to see all of this. What do these images say about this guy`s mindset and what he was thinking?

ALLRED: Well, we`re concerned. All I can tell you is that on the poster that was put out that also triggered the nationwide manhunt. The poster by the L.A. County sheriff, Jane, they said that they considered him armed and dangerous and possibly headed back to southern California and that is where the alleged victim lives with her family, so naturally, she and they were in fear.

She wasn`t able to go to school for a week. She had to be isolated. Her family just was terrorized. They didn`t know whether he was going to be coming in any moment to get her, to get them.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Gloria, I have to jump in -- how the heck was he able to get a gun? Ok, he is arrested for rape. He is in jail. The U.S. Army picks him up to take him to an Army facility because he complains of some pain in his back. Next thing you know he is running around free with a gun. How did he get a gun?

ALLRED: Well, these are the questions that we would like the United States Army to answer. I read a report that said while he was a fugitive from justice after having escaped that somehow he went back to where he was stationed at Fort Stewart and somehow obtained a gun. I don`t know how that happened.

We would like to hear from the United States Army. Why didn`t they, by the way, ever contact the alleged victim and her family to even say that he had escaped from their custody? Wouldn`t that be at least the minimum courtesy that an alleged victim should have a right to expect? But they never did that.

We think now they should at least explain and apologize, most of all investigate. The reason she stood up and spoke out is she doesn`t want this to happen to any other person who ever is an alleged victim in a criminal justice system.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s my big issue. Is the U.S. Army somehow minimizing rape? They allegedly let this private use his cell phone. There`s evidence that he might not have been handcuffed. Then, as you just heard Gloria Allred claim, they did not contact the family of it is rape victim to warn them that this suspect had escaped, so is this a case of not taking the crime of rape seriously? I`m just asking that question.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Get women hope. Rape is not a joke. Give women hope. Rape is not a joke.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. That message by the National Organization for Women; they were protesting last year. But just last week I was actually reading time magazine, and I saw this story about U.S. veterans, females, who filed a class action suit in federal court to force the Pentagon to take rape cases seriously. Now, these women, who are members of the Armed Forces, claimed their rape cases were ignored and that other members of the military actually got away with rape.

So, Gloria, do you think that there is a problem of attitude within the U.S. Military or not?

ALLRED: Well, that`s what we would like to know. And you`re exactly right, Jane, that coming on the heels as it does on the complaints of numerous women who are members of the armed services who say that they have either been raped or sexually harassed while they`ve been a member of the Armed Forces and that it has been minimized or not properly investigated.

We think that this escape has got to be investigated. We need an investigation by the United States Congress, by the United States Army, and we need to have answers because this cannot go on. People, you know -- alleged victims need to know that they`re going to have the proper support from the system and that includes from the Army.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, listen, I want to bring in our team of analysts, and I`m going to start with Mike Brooks, HLN law enforcement analyst. How is it possible that this man was in custody and then he had some kind of a pain, allegedly, and he is going to get treated, and the next thing you know he is running around and posting stuff on Facebook.

MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: This guy should have been handcuffed. He should have been leg shackled when the Army took custody of him from local law enforcement to take him to the Army`s medical facility, and when they noted, no, that he had escaped, the Army CID, the Army Criminal Investigation Division, should have notified her family, the victim`s family, that he had escaped or at the very least notified local law enforcement in California so they could immediately notify the family. It`s unacceptable.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s what I want to know. This guy was in custody of Army police, how in the world was he able to get on Facebook? Read these entries from February 11th, the very day Brazelton was being moved from the jail to Fort Stewart in Georgia, allegedly, for medical reasons.

He wrote, "Out of liberty county jail for a sec. Getting my back looked at. Getting ready to get expedited back to Cali to go to prison. I`m looking at some serious time." Later that day Brazelton escaped when the Army van was stuck in traffic. Brazelton apparently jumped from the van and ran into the woods, and he is typing on his cell phone.

Wendy Murphy, this boggles my mind.

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Well, I wish -- I really wish I could say it boggles mine. I mean one of the problems with the military is it is so much worse than the real world at respecting women and dealing responsibly with rape that these things do happen. I`ve handled cases in all branches of the military, and I have to tell you, I have never seen a case handled well.

I`m involved in a case right now with the Navy. They seem to be doing well so far, and thief changed their rules somewhat, but it is notorious, notorious, in terms of this whole story.

Look, if he is being transferred and the entire military system doesn`t think much of women or the problem of rape, they`re not worried about the guy escaping or being in shackles because they don`t think what he did was all that bad. That`s the philosophy of military attitude about rape, and it`s been a problem for a long time.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you really think it`s that bad in this day and age -- do you really think it`s that bad in this day and age, Wendy?

MURPHY: It is so bad.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I was reading an article in "Time" magazine that was very disturbing about these women who said, you know, they were -- they say they were raped and that the Army -- the military did nothing about it and that`s disturbing.

MURPHY: It should be.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let`s remember that at least half of all U.S. taxpayers are female, ok? Women are taxpayers. We`re citizens. We`re voters. Don`t mess with us.

Thank you for joining us. We`re going to stay on top of that case.

Amanda Knox convicted of murdering her roommate in drug-fuelled sex games while studying abroad in Italy. Now the TV movie has sparked an uproar -- outrage among her supporters. We`re going to take your calls. What do you think? Was this movie unfair? Was it based on facts, or did the sexy storyline spiral into fiction?

1-877-JVM-SAYS, give me a holler, 1-877-586-7297.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AMANDA KNOX`S MOTHER: It`s all about truth and justice, and we have done nothing wrong. I mean, Amanda is allowed to defend herself. Amanda is allowed to tell her story, and she`s been saying it hundreds of times since she was arrested. And when we get asked what did Amanda tell you, we tell the truth. Here`s what Amanda said, and that`s why we`re being charged.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AMANDA KNOX, SENTENCED TO JAIL IN ITALY: They called me a stupid liar, and they said that I was trying to protect someone.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight Foxy Knoxy`s camp fires back at a made-for-TV movie about her infamous Italian murder case. American beauty Amanda Knox was found guilty of brutally murdering her roommate while studying abroad during what Italian prosecutors called a drug-fuelled sadistic sex game. It was a bloodbath.

Prosecutors say Meredith Kercher was held down and sexually assaulted while Amanda taunted her with a kitchen knife. Her throat was slit and her body was found under a blood-soaked comforter in the picturesque Italian flat she shared with Amanda Knox.

Now, Amanda has already been dubbed the devil with an angel`s face. Now Amanda`s lawyers say this movie will cause people to have an evil opinion on Knox and it could affect the appeal that`s going on right now.

Despite pushback, Lifetime Movie aired "Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy" starring Hayden Panettiere last night. Check out the original trailer from mylifetime.com.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Amanda, I hope this trip is everything you dreamed of.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In Italy, they say everything is legal. Nothing is forbidden.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Amanda Marie Knox, a good person, a good student, and a good friend.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Amanda Knox you are being tried for murder.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Suspect that it started as some sort of sex game.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s not true.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lifetime yanked that video from online and then reedited it.

Amanda saw part of the trailer from her Italian prison cell and reportedly became physically ill, hyperventilating. She thought she was going to get sick.

Amanda`s lawyers aren`t the only ones who are furious. The victim`s family, Meredith Kercher`s family, they called the manufacture distressing, and it says it makes their minds run wild imaging what happened to their precious daughter.

Straight out to Anne Bremner, criminal defense attorney; Anne, attorney for Friends of Amanda Knox, got to ask you this, Anne. If potential jurors see this movie, could they get it into their heads that Amanda is guilty as she`s been convict of being?

ANNE BREMNER, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: No doubt. Guilty as charged. That`s the verdict from this movie. I mean, not only does it have this tone of her being basically a vacant-staring sociopath as oppose to kind of a wide-eyed naive girl from Seattle. The tone is terrible.

But then there`s so many falsehoods in the movie; everything from walking a red carpet in court and waving to people when she actually went in through the back to being at the scene and running away, committing the murder. It`s on the movie.

Also, her being connected with the person, the sole murderer, Rudy Guede, before partying with him, et cetera, and starting out as Foxy Knoxy out here in Seattle working in a bar in a tube top showing cleavage when that was her nickname as a kid. She wasn`t old enough to work in a bar before she went to Italy.

She worked three jobs. She went from a college student to a prisoner in Italy. I can tell you, one more thing, Jane, I could go on and on about this is the fact that she was so pilloried in the press in the U.K. and Italy; it`s far worse right here in the United States of America in this movie.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, there are some major discrepancies between what is in this movie and what --

BREMNER: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- many say are the facts of the case. Who knows what the heck happened in that room? Nobody else was there but the victim and who knows who else depending on who you believe.

But here is the original trailer from lifetime.com. In the movie Meredith is wearing only a bra and panties as she`s attacked with a knife, but in reality she was fully dressed like she had just had gotten home.

At another point Meredith is shown cuddling in a bed with drifter Rudy Guede, who is also convicted of her murder and is doing time right now. In reality, it`s believed that they never had any kind of romantic relationship. His bloody handprint was found on a pillow under her body.

Also in the movie Amanda is shown in the room during the attack and investigators, even the prosecutors, never found any sign according to her defenders that Amanda was actually in the room.

J. Wyndal Gordon --

J. WYNDAL GORDON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The supporters of Amanda Knox are saying the film, the Lifetime Movie -- by the way, we tried to reach Lifetime and were unable to get in touch with them. They`re invited on any time to explain their movie and to say their side of the story. But friends of Amanda Knox say this is really fiction, that it`s not facts as proven in court.

GORDON: I don`t think they ever said the movie was supposed to be factual. They said it`s based on a true story -- based. The underlying basis of the movie is supposed to be based on some of the things that happened in that trial.

Why are we crying about Amanda Knox? Amanda Knox originally accused the Congolese man Patrick Lumumba for these horrible crimes. He actually served some time in jail and was released shortly thereafter, and he is suing Amanda Knox for defamation. So now Amanda Knox gets her just desserts because perhaps she may be defamed in a film. Well, turnabout is fair play.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. On the other side of the break, another viewpoint and your calls.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KNOX: Do you remember, do you remember? And then boom on the head.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Amanda Knox says she was hit by investigators when they were questioning her. Tonight, an uproar over a Lifetime movie based on the Amanda Knox, the Foxy Knoxy murder trial in Italy. Knox`s attorneys are furious of the timing because she`s appealing her guilty verdict and they say this movie just absolutely makes her look beyond guilty, like a sadist.

Marlaina (ph) in California, your question or thought, ma`am?

MARLAINA, CALIFORNIA (via telephone): Yes, my question is -- hi, Jane, nice to talk to you -- I saw the movie last night. It said she came home with her boyfriend, the door was wide open and there were blood drop lets on the floor and yet she thought oh, maybe that her roommate had her period and yet she went in and had a shower without thinking.

If that was me, I would say the door is wide open, something is wrong. And also why didn`t she take a shower at her boyfriend`s house as long as she stayed there all night?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Steve Moore, former FBI agent, your response to that?

STEVE MOORE, FORMER FBI AGENT: That`s real easy. First of all, the door was broken, it was not unusual for somebody to walk out that door and it would stay open. She just thought somebody was outside.

The other thing was, in the movie, one of the huge lies that they portrayed was that blood on the shower looking like somebody had been slaughtered. There were only one or two blood drops on the sink, the bidet; nothing like they said it was.

And Jane, you said that nobody knows what happens in the room. That`s actually not totally correct. That`s what evidence is about. That`s what criminal scene investigators are --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Who knows what happened in that room?

MOORE: Anybody who has any skill at looking at a crime scene knows exactly what happened. One man came in, surprised a woman, jumped her from behind, cut her throat from behind her and then sexually assaulted her. The evidence supports nothing but that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And you`re saying that that one man is Rudy Guede? Is that who you believe it is?

MOORE: That man is Rudy Guede. That is absolutely Rudy Guede. There is no other possibility.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ok. Now, let`s show Rudy Guede here. He is -- this is Rudy Guede. Ok. J. Wyndal, you`ve said that you feel like Rudy Guede has been taking the fall for this whole thing. Your response to what Steve Moore said.

GORDON: Yes. I wasn`t talking about Rudy Guede, I want to make that clear. I was talking about Patrick Lumumba, that is the Dial Lumumba (ph) who`s the pub owner in Perugia. He was the first person accused to be responsible for this.

You know, I don`t know. But I think --

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold on one second. Just finish your sentence, J. Wyndal.

GORDON: I don`t know, but I think once a jury has found these individuals guilty, it doesn`t matter what the facts of the case are. If you want to argue an appeal, argue your appeal and that`s what she`s doing now. But as of today, she`s not innocent, she`s guilty.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Steve, let me say there. There were criticisms that the prosecutor had an overactive imagination and created this whole sex game because he let his imagination run wild. Nobody knows whether this sex game actually happened. Your response?

MOORE: No sex game happened. There`s no evidence that a sex game happened and you know, in the last four years, he accused 23 people of having satanic sex games? The man has been indicted. He`s been convicted. And I`m really disappointed in the counselor for saying that if she`s convicted, then you don`t listen to her anymore.

GORDON: Don`t be disappointed in me.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: One at a time.

MOORE: Your client killed ten people yet you screamed about it. You screamed about your client being innocent.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. I`m going to give J. Wyndal the last word.

GORDON: I`m sorry.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Go ahead, J.

GORDON: Don`t be disappointed in me. The prosecutor is still prosecuting. Amanda Knox is in jail, not the prosecutor.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let`s see if she wins on appeal.

MOORE: He`s going to jail, too.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you, panel.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want to take a moment to share a joyous occasion. My mom Anita Velez-Mitchell just celebrated her 95th birthday yesterday. She was once a professional dancer and as you can see, she is still showing off her moves. There she is shaking her thing.

My mom was born in Puerto Rico in 1916, before women even had the right to vote. She was a World War I baby. She arrived in New York City just in time for the Great Depression but that didn`t stop her. She formed her own dance troupe and was very successful as the last of the vaudeville performers.

She`s always been a tremendous inspiration to me and her motto is the show must go on. And I certainly hope her show goes on for many, many more years.

Mom, I love you. Happy 95th birthday and many more.

Nancy Grace starts now.

END