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Jaw-Dropping Developments in the Casey Anthony Trial

Aired May 24, 2011 - 21:00:00   ET


DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: Here we go now. Jaw-dropping secrets in the Casey Anthony trial revealed. Was she sexually abused and betrayed by her own dad? Is the public rushing to judgment?

Plus, should a child decide if it`s a he or she? Some parents think this is a good idea. I`m not so sure about that.

Then, blackout in a can. Did a controversial cocktail lead to a teen`s tragic death? Let`s get going.

All right. Bear with me here. We got a lot to go through. And it pertains to a case that people have been talking about all day and words such as shocking and surprising. When these things kind of throw you, but in the case of Casey Anthony, those words are not strong enough.

There were allegations of sexual abuse, lying, and betrayal that surfaced today before the testimony even began. But, first, let us go back to how the story unfolded almost three years ago. It`s hard to imagine it`s been three years. Watch this then we`ll talk.


NANCY GRACE, HLN HOST: Police desperately searching for a beautiful little girl, Caylee. She was last seen five long weeks ago. So why hasn`t mommy called the police?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why is she being arrested?

GRACE: Tot mom Casey Anthony behind bars. A seven-count indictment.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Someone just said that Caylee was dead this morning, that she drowned in the pool. That`s the newest story out there.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Surprise, surprise.

GRACE: Potentially the big break police have been waiting for in the disappearance of 3-year-old Florida girl, Caylee Anthony. Skeletal remains of a small child. Investigators say it is 3-year-old Caylee.


PINSKY: Well, it`s compelling stuff. And we`ve seen this thing unfold in realtime, but I got to say, I`m not that surprised by the allegations today. I`ve been saying all along that it felt like Casey was a sexual abuse survivor.

You know, the lying, the chaos, the drugs and alcohol. That`s the kind of behavior we often see in a sexual abuse. Well, in fact, I started wondering if she had something called dissociative disorder where she didn`t know what she was doing or some part of her was disconnected to the point she really couldn`t keep up with all of her lies. She certainly lies. There`s no doubt about that.

Now Casey Anthony is charged with murdering her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee.

Joining us to talk about what happened today, our criminal defense attorney Allison Triesel. We also have Ryan Smith and Jean Casarez, both with our "In Session." Our sister network on TruTV.

Defense Attorney Jose Baez dropped this bombshell this morning that Caylee allegedly drowned in the family swimming pool. So watch this now.


JOSE BAEZ, CASEY ANTHONY`S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: How in the world can a mother wait 30 days before ever reporting her child missing? That`s insane. It`s bizarre. Something`s just not right about that. Well, the answer is actually relatively simple. She never was missing. Caylee Anthony died on June 16th, 2008, when she drowned in her family`s swimming pool.


PINSKY: All right. Then the defense made a shocking claim that Casey`s father, George Anthony, knew about the drowning and was complicit in helping hide his granddaughter`s body.

And I want to remind people that we`re talking about sexual abuse a few minutes ago but these are all allegations. Nobody knows really what the truth is here.

But let`s see this tape about George Anthony`s participation.


BAEZ: As soon as Casey came around this corner and went back, she saw George Anthony holding Caylee in his arms. She immediately grabbed Caylee and began to cry. And cry and cry. And shortly thereafter, George began to yell at her. Look what you`ve done. Your mother will never forgive you and you will go to jail for child neglect for the rest of your freaking life.


PINSKY: Oh boy. We`re going to hear from the prosecution in just a minute. But, first, Ryan, what do you make of the defense claim that Caylee drowned in the family swimming pool?

RYAN SMITH, HOST, "IN SESSION" ON TRUTV: Well, I got to tell you, Drew, it was such a surprise when I heard it. There have been talk and speculation over the last few days that that might be a theory they`d offer. But our thought was always, hey, why didn`t they say this a couple years ago when they first started looking at Casey Anthony as a suspect?

But this allegation puts reasonable doubt in the front and center. And that`s because before this we heard the prosecution`s opening statement and it looked like the cards were stacked against Casey. When you look at it as an accident, well, that takes premeditated murder off the table, it takes possible child neglect off the table. It cleans the slate and I think it makes it so that the jury can look at this and say, the prosecution has their story, the defense has their story.

Drew, I still think there are a lot of holes in the story Jose Baez is offering such as what happened to the body after supposedly George was complicit in Caylee`s -- after Caylee drowned and George found her in the pool. They got to answer those questions, but it was such a shock to hear it in court today.

PINSKY: And, Jean, do you think the prosecution was able to make the case convincingly that Casey is just a liar and that this stuff has giant holes in it like as Ryan is saying?

JEAN CASAREZ, HOST, "IN SESSION" ON TRUTV: Well, here`s the thing that the prosecution addressed that the defense did not address. Somebody did searches on the family computer in March of that year, three months before little Caylee went missing or was drowned in the pool. And they were chloroform, how to make chloroform, how to make household weapons, neck breaking, and a shovel. Those were searches done in the home.

PINSKY: That`s bizarre stuff. Allison, isn`t that bizarre? How do we put all this stuff together? Plus, there was, you know, the tape over the child`s mouth and all these other incidental findings that just don`t fit together.

ALLISON TRIESEL, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: See, this is very problematic from the -- of course it`s problematic. But what her defense attorney did today and did very well is say, wait a minute. Because the prosecution has the burden of proof here. They`ve got to show that beyond reasonable doubt that she murdered her daughter.


TRIESEL: The defense does not have to put on any evidence at all. So the fact that you haven`t heard from them for three years, you don`t have to. This is their day in court. They don`t -- this is the day and they are the ones that are going to say, wait a minute, this isn`t a case where she killed her daughter. This was an accident. We didn`t have to tell you about it until now. They do have problems. They`ve got big problems. They`ve got the chloroform, they`ve got the tape over the mouth, they`ve got the Google search, they`ve got the statement that her mother made. Smells like a dead body in the car. Those are major problems.

PINSKY: Although a lot of people are saying that Casey was doing a lot of drugs. And if I heard a drug addict was looking up chloroform and shovels, I would think it would have something to do with their drug history and not about murder, right?

TRIESEL: Maybe he should be listening because that`s one way to explain away. That`s pretty specific. And that`s tough stuff.

PINSKY: Neck breaking doesn`t sort of fit with that.

Jean, do you agree with that? Do you think that this stuff is difficult for them to explain away?

CASAREZ: You know, I think there`s a lot that is difficult for them to explain away. The car that Casey Anthony had control and possession of, we`re going to hear chloroform levels that were very, very high in that car. Higher than a decomposing body emits.

How do you explain that? The defense will explain it as being junk science. That`s tough. And the hair. There`s a hair in the trunk that has decomposition root banding on the end of it.

PINSKY: And, Jean, let me also ask you, George looked a little bit sort of circumspect today under the examination by the defense. Did you agree with that? Or do you think he held up well?

CASAREZ: Go ahead.

SMITH: I`ll take that. You know, I think he did hold up well, Drew. I think this is tough questioning to face. There are a couple things that really stood out to me. The first is, when he was asked pointblank if he had anything to do with this, he said no. And he said, and I was really upset about that allegation. And you could see the hurt in his face about his daughter making that accusation. I think that really resonated with the jury.

I also think he was very straightforward in his answers. A lot of times you`ll see people on the stand and when they`ve got something to do with it, they`re hedging a little bit. They`re kind of shifting a little bit. He didn`t do any of that. He was straightforward and very resolute in the fact that he knew nothing about this.

CASAREZ: Right, he was very stoic in the courtroom, too, but the judge had said that if he saw any emotion out of the parents, if they said anything, that they would be ejected from the courtroom. So that`s one reason maybe why you just saw a blank face when those allegations came up.

PINSKY: Interesting stuff.

Jean, thank you for joining us.

Ryan, you`re going to stay with us.

Now the prosecution -- as is Allison. The prosecution portrayed Casey as a murderer and a liar, and she went for a month without telling anyone that Casey was missing. Look at this.


LINDA DRANE BURDICK, PROSECUTOR: No one but Casey Anthony had access to all the pieces of evidence in this case. Duct tape, the laundry bag, the blanket, the shorts, the shirt, the car. No one else lied to their friends, to their family, to investigators. No one else benefited from the death of Caylee Marie Anthony. Caylee`s death allowed Casey Anthony to live the good life. At least for those 31 days.


PINSKY: Well, whatever the case, the verdict may be in this case, as I`ve said, it is compelling, it is disturbing, and we`ve just barely scratched the surface. There`s much more straight ahead.

Three long years, countless twists and turns, and an incredible trial now under way in Orlando. The details unbelievable. The arguments blistering. The accusations jaw dropping. One mind-boggling revelation after another.

Coming up, HLN`s own Jane Velez-Mitchell weighs in on today`s bombshell opening statements.



BURDICK: No one but Casey Anthony ever saw Caylee Marie Anthony alive again.

BAEZ: She never was missing. Caylee Anthony died on June 16th, 2008, when she drowned in her family`s swimming pool.


PINSKY: All right. We`re getting you guys sort of up to speed with the facts of what`s been going on today.

I have got a ton of questions. And we are back with the host of "Issues" on HLN, Jane Velez-Mitchell, and criminal defense attorney Allison Triesel, and Ryan Smith stays with us. He is host of "In Session" of our sister network TruTV.

Now, opening arguments were heard today in the Casey Anthony trial, as we`ve been reviewing here.

Defense Attorney Jose Baez implicated Casey Anthony`s father, George Anthony, in a cover-up of Caylee`s death, but he didn`t stop there. He also accused her father of sexually abusing Casey when she was a child.

Watch and listen, be warned, this is very explicit material. So here we go.


BAEZ: And it all began when Casey was 8 years old and her father came into her room and began to touch her inappropriately and it escalated. This child at 8 years old learned to lie immediately. She could be 13 years old, have her father (EXPLETIVE DELETED) in her mouth and then go to school and play with the other kids as if nothing ever happened. Nothing`s wrong. That will help you understand why no one knew that her child was dead.


PINSKY: It`s quite an accusation. We`re actually having some technical issues. And I lost Ryan for the moment. We`ll try to get him back.

But, Jane, I want to go to you. What do you make of those accusations? Were you surprised?

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN`s "ISSUES": Well, we heard rumors and rumblings that this would be the defense strategy. But, of course, when it actually is said in that graphic manner, it is startling.

I have to say, Dr. Drew, that I think that this defense could backfire in a big way. Because if the jurors believe the prosecution, and they don`t think that the child drowned in the pool, then what they are staring at in this defendant is really pretty close to pure evil.

A young woman who was capable of murdering her own daughter and then throwing her own father under the bus, accusing him of the most heinous crime, short of murder, the sexual abuse of her as a child. And so this is a death penalty case. And if the jurors don`t find that whole story line believable, it could cause the jurors to really detest her and regard her as evil.

PINSKY: Jane, do you think she`s going to testify?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t think so, but one thing I`ve learned in these cases, to never make absolute predictions. The only thing we know about trials is that they`re very volatile and big, giant cases like this take on a life of their own and you never know. It`s like a runaway freight train. You never know what direction they`re headed. So I would say my guess is no, but I wouldn`t stake my house on it.

PINSKY: Hey, Ryan, I have a question for you. Do you know -- I guess George was out on a workers comp case. Do you know what the nature of that disability was or what the history was there?

SMITH: No. We actually don`t. We`re still looking into what that history was, but the involvement, he mentioned a lawyer that was involved. And where Jose Baez was going with that was, he said 24 hours after the disappearance was reported, you hired a lawyer.

Sometimes defense attorneys do that to say, you were scrambling, you wanted to cover your tracks, you brought in a lawyer. Why would you need a lawyer at that point? You`re simply explaining what you know to the police.

So I think that`s why he brought him up. And then George Anthony said, hey, this is for a workers comp issue. We just brought him in to help in case there were issues, a relatively normal thing for people to do if they are questioned or at least involved with police.

PINSKY: It is. But I got to say, a lot of question marks are flying over my head today. Like workers comp attorney that becomes a good friend and they go out to dinner. That`s weird boundary issues.

Casey`s father was the first witness for the prosecution which gave him a chance to defend himself against the allegations made by Casey`s attorney.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you ever sexually molested your daughter, Casey Anthony?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you ever committed any sexually inappropriate act with or in the presence of your daughter, Casey Anthony?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Were you present in your home when Caylee Anthony died?

GEORGE ANTHONY: No. When I heard that today, it hurt really bad. Because if I would have known something would have happened to Caylee, we wouldn`t be here today.


PINSKY: All right. Everyone`s sitting in judgment of this trying to see what those feelings were flashing across Casey and George`s face. I thought I saw shame on George. I thought I saw some disassociation on Casey. I think she`s sort of disconnected from the whole thing. Casey was actually shaking her head as her father denied the allegations.

All right, to Allison. First of all, you mentioned to me something that in the courtroom you can make any allegations you want and you`re protected, which is sort of extraordinary.

TRIESEL: Right. This is their defense. I mean, this is their time to explain why their client didn`t kill her daughter. And so they really, it`s open game. They can argue just about anything.

PINSKY: And say horrible, horrible things and not worry about liabilities or anything like that.

TRIESEL: Well, first, we`re presupposing that those aren`t true. We don`t know, right?


PINSKY: If you knew they weren`t for you to say it. You could say anything you want?

TRIESEL: Dr. Drew, you can argue it. You have a right to be defended and present a defense and it may be outlandish and crazy to some of us, sometimes it`s true.

PINSKY: Jane, let me float another outlandish, speaking of outlandish idea.

Dad was a detective, right?


PINSKY: Correct?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: He`d been a cop in the past. Yes.

PINSKY: The baby turns up with the tape over her mouth and sort of a systemic kind of disposal of the contents. You know what I mean? Of the body.

I was thinking to myself, boy, had it been a drowning victim, only somebody who knew how to manage drowning victims and dead bodies would know that a lot of stuff comes out of the mouth and if you tape it up, you can prevent that from happening. They vomit, they have water -- all kinds of stuff comes out in the hours after a drowning. Do you think that`s just crazy on my part to think that?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No, I think you might be a good expert witness for the defense. But of course, the prosecution is saying that -- I better not float that. You`ll be called.

But the prosecution is saying that all of that is evidence of premeditation and it dovetails with somebody googling in the Anthony home while George Anthony was at work, I might say, looking for chloroform and how to break a neck, et cetera, et cetera.

So there`s a whole bunch of things that the state presented in their opening statements today that indicate this was not an accidental death and the duct tape is one thing that why would you tape somebody`s mouth unless you planned to put them out for food, giving them chloroform?

Remember, there was a high levels of chloroform found in that trunk.

PINSKY: Yes. Interesting.

Thank you, Jane. Thank you, Ryan. Thank you, Allison, for joining me here.

I know -- I want to hear how they explain all that stuff away. It`s going to be very interesting.

And now coming up on this show, your questions and comments on these incredible developments. Are you buying what the defense is saying? We`re going to get your turn, your calls, your Facebook questions - next.


PINSKY: Sex, lies, betrayal. The defense says it all plays a part in the Casey Anthony case. Many of you have questions. So let`s get right to our first caller. We have Diana from California.

Diana, go ahead.

DIANA, CALIFORNIA (via telephone): Hey, Dr. Drew. Do you think Miss Anthony could have some sort of dissociative disorder or undiagnosed mental illness?

PINSKY: Oh, there`s -- the could there is no doubt in my mind. She could. I mean, I was just looking at footage of her a few moments ago and I was saying she seemed disassociated. She kind of checks out. You`ll see the light in her eyes go out. And, yes, any trauma survivor has some degree of disassociation. That doesn`t mean necessarily she has a dissociative disorder, but certainly severe dissociative disorder would explain the crazy amount of lies and it`s almost not remembering one lie from the other. I don`t know. But something like that could have a role to play. And certainly the defense is building towards something like that as a reason for how, why she behaved the way she did and why she would have gone on with this charade for as long as she did and why there are so darn many lies.

We also have a question from Ann. She writes after watching Casey`s trial today, I was wondering if child abuse can cause you to lie about serious matters later on in life?

Well, that`s just precisely what I`m talking about here. Yes, of course, having been a trauma survivor, people become very secretive. They lose the ability to trust and lying often becomes a very common feature of their behaviors.

Later, they often develop what are called personality disorders and of course they develop addiction. And either of those conditions lying is very, very common.

We got another caller. Kristin from Arizona.

Go ahead, Kristin.

KRISTIN, ARIZONA (via telephone): Hey, Dr. Drew.

PINSKY: Kristin.

KRISTIN: I was sexually abused by three different people at a young age and I never told anyone until just recently. I felt like what happened was my fault. And when I was younger I thought I was going to be the one in trouble. My family didn`t know who I was and I was very cold and angry for a very long time. I was wondering if you often see this type of situation?

KRISTIN: I mean, Kristin, first of all, my heart goes out to you. I`m sorry you had to live through that terror, number one.

Number two, you are describing a typical case of sexual abuse. This is how particularly the young girls do behave when this happens to them.

And every child, when they are the victim of abuse, believes they`re responsible for it. It`s a very grandiose posture that is normal for a child. The problem is that feeling stays with you in adulthood, and that contributes to the tendency to re-enact these things over and over again. I`m glad you`re talking about it. And I hope you`re getting help. These things are treatable.

Kimberly now writes, I`m not sure if, she says, if Casey Anthony is telling the truth. I`m not sure anybody is. But I know many liars. What advice do you have for dealing with people who constantly lie?

Excuse me. I actually do have some advice here, because, as you know, in my professional life for 20 years, I dealt with drug addicts in a regular basis. And we had a saying, if their lips were moving, they were lying. You couldn`t really rely on almost anything our patients told us. So there`s sort of two strategies you use.

One is, do not expect them to tell you the truth. When people get angry and resentful that they`re being lied to, it isn`t about you. It`s about their condition. They many times don`t even know they`re lying. They get so used to it. So accustomed to it. So a liar that`s lying to you, expect it. Don`t react negatively or resentfully to it.

Secondly, trust your instincts. Always know where you are. Listen to your own body. Listen to your own feelings when that person is talking to you and trust that more than anything else.

We`re going to talk more about the Casey Anthony trail later. But first, why on earth do parents of the baby let the child determine his or her gender? It`s a good question. We`ll have some answers next.



PINSKY (voice-over): It`s one thing to let your son play with dolls or your daughter with trucks, but what about totally ignoring gender, pretending it doesn`t exist? A Canadian couple is doing just that. Not even revealing their baby`s sex to anyone. They`re taking it to the next level for sure, but some say it`s one level too far.

And later, a teen is killed after drinking the equivalent of ten beers and eight cups of coffee. That`s just two cans of Four Loko. His parents say the drink was a fatal cocktail, and they`re suing the company.


PINSKY (on-camera): All right. What`s the first thing we do when a baby is born? First question we ask? In fact, we ask the question before the baby is born. We now moved it back and look at ultrasounds. We ask, is it a boy or girl, right? Well, there`s a couple in Toronto that is creating quite a stir right now because they are not saying. They`re literally not saying. They`re raising their baby. The baby`s name is storm, what they`re calling gender free.

David Stocker and his wife, Kathy Witterick, argue that they`re giving their child the freedom to choose who he or she, whichever is might be, wants to be. So, what is good about this? What`s bad about it?

Joining me to discuss is Jayme Poisson. She is a staff writer for "The Toronto Star," and she profiled the family. Also with me is clinical psychologist and author Lisa Boesky. And Cheryl Kilodavis, her son, five- year-old son likes to wear dresses. We visited with her family a couple of weeks ago, and she`s authored a book called "The Princess Boy."

All right. Jamie, what is your take having reported on this family?

JAYME POISSON, STAFF REPORTER, TORONTO STAR: Well, thank you for having me. Well, I`m a news reporter, so when I went into this story, I thought that my only goal was really to let it tell itself, and I hope that what we are able to do is create an article and a profile that raised a lot of questions for people about childrearing and parenting and gender and sex and how those all come together when you`re raising your children. I don`t think --

PINSKY: Are you surprised -- I`m going to ask you. Are you surprised by the -- are you surprised by the traction the story has gotten, the amount of reaction people are having?

POISSON: Yes. It`s quite overwhelming. I -- I thought that it would be interesting, and I was hoping that it would provoke an interesting discussion. It`s the second most read story on our website,, in two years. And I`ve been getting phone calls from Austria, the UK, all over the U.S. And as soon as this story went up, people started e-mailing me responses. Some good. They think that the family is very brave that they`re letting the children decide who they want to be.

Other people feel like this is, perhaps, an experiment that will have harmful effects on the children, that they`re sending them out into the world in a way that invites teasing and taunting. I think that it`s creating a really interesting discussion. Sometimes, the comments have been nasty, and I don`t think that those contribute to constructive discussion. But, sure we received a lot of really interesting feedback.

PINSKY: Cheryl, let me ask you. Should these parents be concerned about the world they are sending that child into?

CHERYL KILODAVIS, AUTHOR, "MY PRINCESS BOY": Well, I think absolutely. I mean, as parents, we`re all concerned about making sure that we`re making the right decisions for our children, but this is just another example of courageous families saying, OK, world, we`re going to challenge you about gender expression, and we`re going to challenge you by not using just adjectives to say strong boy or pretty girl, but we`re going to challenge you to say actually authentic adjectives such as pretty child and strong child.

PINSKY: And, Cheryl, does it surprise you that people are reacting so powerfully to this? Do you get similar reactions with your son?

KILODAVIS: Absolutely. I mean, this is, I think it just -- as a mom, we go through this kind of thing. We try to make the right decisions, and we`re doing the best for our children. This is another example -- I haven`t met the family, but my hope is that there`s an authenticity there, just as our family.

I mean, my child, Dyson, started doing this when he was almost two years old, and he`s a very strong extrovert child. So, he`s sending messages by saying, accept me for who I am, and this family is challenging us to do the same. We need to get to a place of a acceptance.

PINSKY: Well, Lisa, you`re a child psychologist, and we have a family here that is sort of experimenting on a child. It`s a human study of one, is it not?

LISA BOESKY, PH.D., CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST/AUTHOR: That`s exactly right. I mean, we do have a culture obsessed -- I mean, we have a culture that`s obsessed with gender. I agree, and it`s good that this gender topic is being out in the forefront, but I do think this choice is extreme, raising your child without a gender, because it really is a social experiment.

And we don`t know if it`s going to have a negative outcome. And if it does, it`s going to be the child that pays the price of that. And think about the relentless teasing, the bullying. I`m a little concerned that these parents that their plan is going to backfire, and although his identity won`t be male or female, his identity could be the he/she boy or the X-boy and he might be a social outcast and that might be worse than if he had a gender in the first place.

PINSKY: You know, most research is pointing towards biology having a very powerful effect, correct?

BOESKY: Well --

PINSKY: Very powerful. Not exclusive, but powerful. I understand. So, there`s a likelihood that that biologist is going to express itself. And I know -- I know males. He`s going to be angry. He`s going to -- you know what I mean? They`re likely to get that kind of a reaction from the child potentially.

BOESKY: Well, that`s possible, and I think just having to keep a secret of something that what you are. So, eventually, he`s going to notice he has genitals.

PINSKY: Isn`t that the problem here in this story is that behind that, isn`t there a subtle message that gender, itself, is wrong, that something wrong with having a gender?

BOESKY: Exactly.

PINSKY: And that`s the part that concerns me, because even in not having a gender, there`s a message. Cheryl`s son was a different story. He has a certain way of expressing himself, and they`re giving him the freedom to do that as opposed to saying gender is a bad thing and let`s hide it, which that`s a subtle message. We have a statement from Kathy Witterick. Let me read it, because she, I think, tries to address this.

She says, "Raising a child gender free," she says, "I`m not telling the gender of my precious baby. I`m saying to the world, please can you just let Storm" -- which might if the he makes him angry by itself, "just let Storm discover for him or herself what he or she wants to be." On paper, it sounds great. It really does, but communism sounds good on paper, too. That`s all I`m saying.

BOESKY: Well, the thing is, gender is one part of our identity and an important part of our identity, but you`re also creative, smart, a good soccer player, an outgoing personality, and I think they`re making gender a bigger deal than it necessarily needs to be. Kind of like what you`re saying, by not having it out there, it makes it a bigger issue.

So, I think they can really -- I mean, I`m a big believer that all parents including myself, we need to be exposing our boys to more feminine- oriented things and should be doing the same thing with our girls.

PINSKY: For sure.

BOESKY: All of us can work on that.


BOESKY: But I think this takes it to such an extreme, it`s like a social experiment.

PINSKY: Cheryl, I want to give you last words on this, because you`ve been struggling with this for quite some time, and you`re -- I would call my expert here having lived through this. What are your thoughts?

KILODAVIS: Well, thank you. Yes. I think -- you know, there`s a difference between gender identity and gender expression. And you`re absolutely right. Dyson said, I`m a princess boy. He identifies boy. And that`s what`s happening, but this is a bigger question. I think you`re right. There is the entire experiment piece to it, but it is important for us to keep the conversation going.

Why do we need to categorize? Why do we always need to compartmentalize? Why can`t we just accept children for who they say they are, who they want to be, and get to a place where we`re really focusing our energy where it needs to be focused. On things that are going on in the world, not on where our children are trying to be happy and be who they are.

PINSKY: Thank you, Cheryl. Thank you, Jayme. Thank you, Lisa. And right or wrong, it`s about families trying to do their best to raise kids healthy.

But, what happens when you do that, and in spite of that, tragedy strikes?


PINSKY (voice-over): Four Loko, under fire. A family is suing the beverage maker after saying their son died from this stuff and the manufacturer implying the problem was underage drinking, not their product.

And later, more on the explosive first day of the Casey Anthony trial. I`m bringing you more details and my take on the shocking story.



PINSKY (on-camera): OK. This is an important story. Tonight, heartbroken parents are suing an alcohol company. They say their son died after drinking what some have nicknamed blackout in a can or liquid cocaine. OK. Think about this. One can of the drink Four Loko packs some burst of caffeine and ton of alcohol. Fifteen-year-old Bo Rupp, apparently, drank two cans of the stuff before he died. Listen to this.


KARLA RUPP, SUING ALCOHOL COMPANY AFTER SON`S DEATH: Our son did not deserve to die in the hands of something so easy to buy that it`s sold in convenience stores. Now, that we are in the midst of prom and graduation season, it is especially important for parents to be aware of the potency of Four Loko. In my heart of hearts, I want you all to know that I am here today to help save kids` lives from dangerous products like this.


PINSKY: Yes, this is really sad. For those of you who aren`t getting how serious this stuff is. Check this out. One can of Four Loko is like drinking five beers and four cups of coffee. So, this young man had the equivalent of ten beers and eight cups of coffee the night he died. Phusion Projects, the makers of Four Loko has since removed the caffeine voluntarily from the drink after the FDA insisted that it`d be taken out.

Bo`s mom, Karla Rupp, is here so is her attorney, Jeffrey Simon. Now, Karla, you say Four Loko is what did this. Tell us what happened.

RUPP: The night of September 25th, he and a bunch of his friends from high school went to a country concert, and they all kind of hung out together. Before we left the house, he carried the can -- he carried a backpack that I saw what he put in. He put in some Arizona ice teas in a bottle.

Got in the car, we drove, I drove, and I was driving them to and from the concert, you know, trying to be a responsible parent, and dropped them off, and within about an hour, hour and 15 minutes, I got a call from the concert staff saying my son was acting intoxicated, kind of erratically, that I need to come pick him up. And I drove there and I picked him up and I drove home. And he took off out of my car as soon as we got home.

I went and got my husband. And we -- my husband had me drive to look for him. He walked around and looked for him. And then, I came home and then he got in his truck and looked all over the neighborhood for him. He parked up at the community center, which ultimately ended up being there, he was struck by a car.

PINSKY: Had you ever seen any behavior like this before from him?

RUPP: Never. This was so out of character for him.

PINSKY: Did you know what he had drunk or consumed? What was your --

RUPP: No. I just assumed he had drank something and, you know, because I mean, obviously he acted intoxicated, but he also acted just paranoid and raged behavior, just something I`d never, ever seen before ever in my life.

PINSKY: When did you find out what he consumed?

RUPP: A couple weeks after, some friends had come over, and they had actually kind of told me. I had asked and they told me.

PINSKY: Are you also taking a similar action against the institution that sold him the product?

RUPP: Oh, absolutely. He walked in a couple days before. They knew he was under age. They took his money, and he purchased --

PINSKY: From a legal standpoint, Jeffrey, what`s going on here?

JEFFREY SIMON, ATTORNEY`S FOR KARLA RUPP: We have sued all of the companies that made or sold the particular products at issue. That includes Phusion Projects, the manufacturer. It includes the company that actually makes it for them, the distributors.

PINSKY: We actually gave them an opportunity to come and make a comment. The Phusion Projects, the makers of Four Loko, they did not respond, but they did release a statement. So, let me give them an opportunity to have their day here. Says, quote, "We are extremely saddened by this tragedy, and our thoughts are with the Rupp Family. This accident and others like it speak to the serious societal concerns regarding the misuse of alcohol abuse -- alcohol abuse and underage drinking are all problems we would all like to see discussed and solved."

SIMON: And these expressions (ph) in that statement are considerable. First of all, although it is true that teen drinking is a problem and certainly should never be condoned, he`d be just as dead if he was 21. He`d be just as poisoned. And there are numerous instances in which people who are of age or within a few months have gotten sick, Jason Kiran (ph) was 20 years old.

PINSKY: So, there are other cases now, too?

SIMON: Absolutely.

PINSKY: This isn`t an isolated case, and people want to say, oh, she`s overreacting. There are other parents lining up to take action?

SIMON: That`s right. He`s not dead because he`s 15. He`s dead because he drank Four Loko.

PINSKY: Are they marketing this stuff to teens?

SIMON: We think that`s obvious.

PINSKY: So, that`s the issue. I mean, alcohol, it could have been any -- theoretically could have been any heavy alcohol exposure, right?

RUPP: But in the kind of alcohol -- in the Four Loko that he drank, he drank it with not only it had caffeine and it had other stimulants in it also. He couldn`t pass out. He was blackout drunk. He couldn`t pass out. He didn`t know where he was, what he was doing. He couldn`t pass out.

PINSKY: This is an awful thing. I mean, this has got to be -- changed your life. Is it -- is this you now trying to make a difference? It seemed like that in the video.

RUPP: Absolutely 100 percent.

PINSKY: Trying to make sense of this loss. It`s so sad.

RUPP: I have spent my life working with kids and --


RUPP: For 15 years, I worked in the schools with special ed children.

PINSKY: You had a special ed child, yourself?

RUPP: Yes, I did. And after a while, I had to stop doing 24 hours -- I now sell real estate in the area. And -- but I have been very involved with my kids and their activities. And the kids always come to my house. I have still relationships, very dear, special relationships with Bo`s friends. They come over all the time.

PINSKY: Well, let me ask you this. What is your warning to other parents out there? Because you know, if there is something that people are going to take away from this, this is your opportunity to say it.

RUPP: Absolutely. That I didn`t know that this stuff existed when this happened. I now want every parent to know that this stuff is out there. This is dangerous. Even reformulated, even with just 12 percent alcohol, trying to explain to the kids what that truly means. It means that it`s equivalent, one can is equivalent of a bottle of wine. One can is the equivalent of four, five or six beers.

PINSKY: This looks fairly innocuous. In fact, it looks kind of fun.

RUPP: Absolutely.

PINSKY: And, again, I don`t want to take aim at the company that creates this. They`re creating a product. They`re creating like any other alcohol product, but --

RUPP: It`s not marketed to me. It`s not marketed to you. It`s marketed -- look, package, marketed for kids. It`s cheap.

SIMON: In jolly rancher flavors. I mean, that`s watermelon flavor.

PINSKY: I`ve actually read some data that suggest that the flavoring, unusual flavoring adds to the intoxicant effect. There`s some data like that out that was just strange. It`s not --

RUPP: It can be drink faster. It can be drunk faster.

PINSKY: Not just that, there`s literature out there that shows the strange associations with novel flavors actually enhances the intoxication which is very interesting, but again, to try to bring this home for other parents, did you use to say to yourself, not my kid? Something the parents often say that I find very, very scary. Was that you?

RUPP: Well, no.

PINSKY: You expected -- that`s why you were driving the kid to the concert?

RUPP: Absolutely. Absolutely. And you know, I knew what was in his backpack or I thought I knew what was in his backpack. You know, I have been very proactive. My kids didn`t have TVs or computers in their room. You know, I -- as proactive as I could be, but you can`t protect them against everything, especially when you don`t know something like this exists. Parents need to know this is out there. It exists. Kids need to know how dangerous, what 12 percent alcohol means.

PINSKY: Bottle of wine. That says it all right here. It`s a bottle of wine. Jeffrey, where is this all end? Take us to where you want this to go. I mean, are you going to remove this stuff from the market or we`re just going to have greater awareness? Where are we going with this?

SIMON: Number one, this product should not be sold. It is more potent than the alcohol kids normally get their hands on. It is cheaper at $2.50. Right? And its presentation is for a very young demographic. The flavoring hides the taste of the alcohol so they can drink it fast. Right? It`s sold in gas stations instead of liquid stores.

Now, in terms of the lawsuit, we simply want the companies that made and sold the product to be held accountable, but the larger picture is, there`s no reason for this product to be on sale.

PINSKY: I want to remind people that we did reach out to the company. They did not respond. We actually asked them to come on the show, and they did not respond. They just gave us that statement that I read earlier. Well, Jeffrey, thank you. And, I don`t know what to say. I mean, I understand you lost another child, too, and I just -- these are like things I can`t imagine. I hope you make a difference because that will make some sense of all this.

RUPP: Thank you. Appreciate it.

PINSKY: All right. Well, I`ve got a lot more to say about Casey Anthony trial, too. That next stuff, I`m going to dissect that and what went down in court today. We`re going to talk about it, so don`t go away.


PINSKY: All right. Now, let`s get back to the Casey Anthony trial. I want to deconstruct some of the more sensational moments of the day in court. Attorney Lisa Bloom is here with me. She is the author of "Think." The book is out now. Get it at your local bookstore. Get it to Amazon, and she`s here to help me out. Let`s go through some of this. First, there is this graphic accusation from defense attorney, Jose Baez, about what he says George did to Casey. Watch this.


JOSE BAEZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: This child, at eight years old, learned to lie immediately. She could be 13 years old, have her father`s (EXPLETIVE DELETED) in her mouth and then go to school and play with the other kids as if nothing ever happened. Nothing`s wrong. That will help you understand why no one knew that her child was dead.


PINSKY: That`s allegedly why she was lying. Lisa, do you buy it? Then, a few minutes later, George denies the whole thing. Somebody`s lying here. What do you think?

LISA BLOOM, ATTORNEY: Well, look, both sides admit that Casey Anthony is a liar. Both sides have said that in their opening statements. The only question is, when is she lying and when is she telling the truth? Look, I tend to believe young women when they say that they were molested. Maybe it`s true, maybe it`s not, but in this case, there`s really absolutely no way of knowing whether that`s true.

What we do know is that Casey had to come up with a story about why she didn`t disclose that her daughter was missing for a month. Now, we know what her story is. This is it.

PINSKY: I agree with you, Lisa. It`s been my experience that the majority of time, anyway, when somebody claims they were sexually abused, it kind of bears fruit. It bears out. But, as you`re saying, there`s a lot of motivation here in this case to lie and a lot of history of lying, but then, people who are sexually abused lie a lot, too. It`s hard to make sense of this.

BLOOM: Well, that`s right, but let`s look at the story, OK? The story is that her father was watching the little girl. The little girl fell into the pool and drowned. And then, he supposedly told Casey, we can`t report this because you`ll go to prison or I`ll go to prison for the rest of our lives. You know, this is a former sheriffs deputy. That story to me doesn`t make sense on its base.

He surely knows that children have accidents. The thing to do is to call 911. And if she had an accident and fell in the pool and drowned, nobody would be going to prison, much less for the rest of their lives. So, the story to me on its phase is incredible (ph).

PINSKY: That`s an interesting point of view, but on the other hand, a family that`s full of secrets and sicknesses and bad things going on tends not to want to have the scrutiny of law enforcement. True?

BLOOM: Right. That`s true, but then, you have to look at all of the other evidence. The searches on the computer that we heard about today for ringing a neck, for chloroform, you know? I mean, it sounds as though somebody in that household, probably Casey, because she was the most computer literate, was doing very scary sounding searches in March just a couple of months before her little girl died.

PINSKY: And Casey --

BLOOM: How is she going to explain that?

PINSKY: Casey had previous felony, too. People are forgetting about that. I mean, this might be a full-fledged criminal. I mean, criminals have a different way of thinking, and Casey does have a previous felony, right?

BLOOM: Yes, that`s right. And I think what`s going on here, Dr. Drew, is that her attorney probably knows that she`s going to be convicted. I mean, look, she`s entitled to the presumption of innocence. We have to hear all of the evidence, but we already know there`s a lot of very powerful evidence against her. I think they`re trying to save her from the death penalty.


BLOOM: And so, they`re starting out this case trying to get some sympathy for a woman who many people in the public really hate, trying to at least save her from the electric chair.

PINSKY: Wow. Lisa, thank you very much. Interesting perspective. We`re going to keep following this trial from start to finish tonight. Just the beginning here, so we`re going to find out where it goes. We`re going to do this together, make sense of it. Thank you, Lisa Bloom, for joining me. Thank you all for watching. See you tomorrow.