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Syracuse Fires Coach Amid Sexual Allegations
Aired November 28, 2011 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: Here we go.
Is Syracuse University another Penn State? Sordid allegations involving a former coach`s wife have now surfaced.
Then, holiday madness. What provokes stampedes and pepper spray as a shopping strategy?
And we`ll talk about the latest death as a result of suspected hazing. Why hasn`t this stopped?
And what I saw in Kim Kardashian`s marriage that perhaps you didn`t.
Let`s get started.
Tonight, a child sex abuse scandal rips through another university. Syracuse University fires a long time assistant coach after three men comes forward saying he abused them as boys. This story is full of twists, alleged abuse, secret telephone conversations and bizarre love triangles. Watch this.
PINSKY (voice-over): Patently false in every respect, that is what Syracuse assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine has said about allegations he sexually abused boys. He said he was confident an investigation would clear him.
But Fine was fired by the university Sunday after a third man came forward. Twenty-three-year-old Zach Tomaselli says Fine molested him in 2002. He says the scandal at Penn State involving coach Jerry Sandusky prompted him to come forward.
Two former Syracuse ball boys also say Fine abused them. Bobby Davis, now 39, tells ESPN the alleged abuse started in 1984 and continued until he was 27.
BOBBY DAVIS, FORMER SYRACUSE BALL BOY: You know, he`s sitting next to me, rubbing my leg, and then just gradually, you know, put his hand down my pants, and, you know, try to grab my penis. And if - and if I resisted, you know, which I did all the time, you know, and most I - just, like, he would get more aggressive.
PINSKY: ESPN has a stunning tape recorded telephone conversation between Davis and Fine`s wife. Did Bernie Fine`s wife know about the abuse and do nothing? In 2002, they apparently discussed the alleged abuse in graphic detail. Listen to this from ESPN.
LAURIE FINE, BERNIE FINE`S WIFE (via telephone): What did he want you to do? You can be honest with me?
DAVIS (via telephone): So what do you think? What he always does.
FINE: What? He wants you to grab him? Or [bleep] him?
DAVIS: No. He`s trying to make me. No, he`s trying to make me grab him. I mean, he`s like - but, first he would grab me and start, you know, touching me.
FINE: But you never had any oral sex with him?
DAVIS: He - I think he would want to, but.
FINE: Oh, of course, he would.
PINSKY: A voice recognition expert hired by ESPN says the voice on the tape is Laurie Fine`s, and Laurie Fine`s nephew says she believes the voice is hers, but that the tape was doctored.
But in a stunning twist, ESPN reports that Laurie Fine may have also engaged in sexual relations with Davis. Davis says they did when he was in high school, claiming she initiated their physical relationship, which included sexual intercourse.
PINSKY: I want to be sure to point out that HLN cannot confirm the validity of these tapes.
The question, though, is apparent, is this Penn State all over again?
Straight to my guest, veteran sportscaster and author of "The Greatest Moment In Sports," Len Berman. He is here. Len started his career at Syracuse covering basketball games when he was a student there in the `60s. Bernie Fine was a student manager at that time.
And live at Syracuse University, Mike Galanos. Mike, can you fill us in on what the latest is?
MIKE GALANOS, HLN ANCHOR: Well, you mention those tapes, Drew. And what we`re finding out is that Laurie Fine, Bernie Fine`s wife, is going to release a statement tomorrow. Her nephew, Matt Govendo, says that their contention is that these phone conversations were basically tampered with, spliced together to make her look bad. That`s what they`re saying.
They go on to say, this is the contention, it is that Bobby Davis leeched off them, ate their food for 15 years. So that is basically the genesis of where these tapes come from. So that`s going to be an interesting statement when that comes out tomorrow, Drew.
PINSKY: Have you - have you heard all of the tapes, Mike?
GALANOS: Yes, I have.
PINSKY: Can you - can you imagine any way they could have doctored them to put them together to make it seem as bad as it seems?
GALANOS: You know, when I saw that they were going to come out with this statement, they`re saying that they were spliced together or tampered with, I`m like that is one heck of an editing job. Let`s just say that. The way I heard them -
PINSKY: That`s - right.
GALANOS: -- I`m no technical expert -
PINSKY: It would be impossible. I would be impossible.
GALANOS: -- but that`s one heck of an editing job, yes.
PINSKY: All right. Fair enough. Fair enough. Just what I thought.
Now, Zach Tomaselli is the third accuser to come forward and says Fine molested him. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ZACH TOMASELLI, ACCUSSES BERNIE FINE OF SEX ABUSE: I was in the hotel room, and he was - he would put his hand down my shorts whenever I was sitting there watching TV and he would basically fondle me four to maybe even five times, and it would go in spurts between 10 and 15 minutes, and it would stop for a couple of hours, and then he would start that all over again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: And we`ve been having a lot of conversation on this show about the cycle of abuse and this victim could be another example of that.
Tomaselli himself faces sexual assault charges in Maine involving a 14-year-old boy. Mike, do you know anything about this particular case?
GALANOS: Yes. We don`t know the particulars, but we have the charges. I`ve got them in front of me, Drew. And it`s basically a laundry list. He was arrested in April, 11 warrants, charges gross sexual assault, tampering with a victim, two counts of unlawful sexual contact, five counts of visual sexual aggression against a child, and unlawful sexual touching and unlawful sexual contacts.
Again, we don`t know the specifics, but again that`s a laundry list of charges there that Mr. Tomaselli is facing.
PINSKY: I - I certainly hope people are not using the fact, the simple fact that abuse, sexual abuse forms a cycle that goes forward as a defense for their behavior.
That is not in any way that I am implying when I try to educate people about the fact that, you know, if somebody is a perpetrator, there`s an overwhelming probability that they were abused themselves. They can`t use that as a defense. That`s just simply a fact of how that stuff evolves.
Now, the head coach of the Syracuse men`s basketball team Jim Boeheim has changed his tune since Fine was fired. At first, he insisted he would stand by Fine and suggested ESPN that the victims could be lying to get money.
Now, he`s apologizing. He says, quote, "The allegations that have come forth today are disturbing and deeply troubling. I am personally very shocked because I`ve never witnessed any of the activities that have been alleged. I believe the university took the appropriate step tonight. What is most important is that this matter be fully investigated and that anyone with information be supported to come forward so the truth can be found. I deeply regret any statements I made that might have inhibited that from occurring or have been insensitive to the victims of abuse."
Len, can you explain Boeheim`s change of heart?
LEN BERMAN, AUTHOR, "THE GREATEST MOMENTS IN SPORTS": Well, I mean, he was obviously standing by his long time friend and associate, Bernie Fine, and the way he reacted led me to believe that Jim truly felt that way. He called it a pack of a thousand lies. Now these other stories are coming out.
What I`m troubled about is what else does the university know? Because both Jim Boeheim and the district attorney have supported Fine`s firing. Both of the bombshells from yesterday as you`ve already articulated are quite flakey. I mean, you know, the one kid has his own allegations. His own father is calling him a liar. Bernie Fine`s wife Laurie may have herself had an affair with Bobby Davis.
I mean, it`s just bizarre all the way around, so I`m just wondering what it is that they told Jim Boeheim of what the university feels is true, that made them fire Bernie Fine. Because I think it just can`t be based on the flakiness of these two bombshells.
PINSKY: And, Len, it sort of brings up another issue that I`ve been trying to focus on here over and over again which is, is there an arrogance in the administrative systems? Is there a sense of specialness that these - that these academic institutions should be left to themselves to solve their own problems, that historically, that`s how things have been done? That they don`t - the reporting obligations that the rest of us have don`t apply to them so much.
Is that what you`re talking about when you say you wonder what`s going on there?
BERMAN: Well, you certainly make a good point. And I`m sure all of the big sports programs at all of the universities feel that they are insulated from the rest of the world.
And, again, my concern with what Syracuse did yesterday, was Nancy Cantor, the chancellor sent out an e-mail to students and faculty and part of the e-mail defended what Syracuse did. Well, this is not about covering your rear end at this point. This is about trying to get the truth and the facts out there, and I think that`s what my alma-mater should be doing.
Let`s get the facts. Let`s stop protecting yourself and saying, well, we did what we do was right back then, whatever we did. No. Let`s get some facts right now.
PINSKY: Len, I totally agree with you. Just it`s -it`s very straightforward. Get the facts. Do what the rest of us do, do the reporting, hold yourself up to the same standard, and let`s get to the bottom of this. Same standard we all - that applies to each and every one of us.
Coming up, more of the allegations of - go ahead.
BERMAN: No. I`m just concerned about where this leads for Jim Boeheim. Because a lot of people are making the comparison with Joe Paterno and saying perhaps Jim covered things up, that he knew what was going on.
In my heart of hearts, I don`t think that`s necessarily true, but as we`ve learned so far in all of this, who knows what the next shoe will be and when it will drop.
PINSKY: I agree with you. I mean, it has - it has a different kind of feel to it, I think. And you`re right. That it seems that he really didn`t believe these allegations, but somebody might have known something or maybe he should have known something and he overlooked them and, you know, omission, commission, they`re related.
Coming up, more on the allegations that former Syracuse assistant coach Bernie Fine`s wife also had a sexual relationship - get this - with one of the boys accusing him of molesting him. Did she know that her husband did this and ignored it?
And later, I saw something in the Kim Kardashian`s marriage that I want to bring your attention. It`s possible - oh, there it is, possible warning signs for us all (ph) to consider. Look at that. Now, that is not OK. We`re going to talk about that. Because back with more after this.
PINSKY: Welcome back. Thanks for joining us.
Syracuse University`s assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine has been fired after three men have come forward accusing him of sexually abusing them. So how much did his wife know about these claims?
One victim, Bobby Davis, says he recorded - this is amazing, recorded a phone conversation with her. Listen to this from ESPN.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
FINE (via telephone): Because I care about you and I didn`t want to see you being treated that way. And it`s hard for - if it was another girl like I told you, it would be easy for me to step in because you know what you`re up against, you`re - you`re when it`s someone, it`s another guy, you can`t compete with that. It`s just wrong, and you were a kid. You`re a man now, but you were a kid then.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
PINSKY: Davis also alleges to ESPN that he had a sexual relationship with the coach`s wife, the woman you alleged hear on that tape.
Now, I want to focus in on this. This is a wild twist and turn in this case.
Joining me, psychologist Michelle Golland; director of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, David Clohessy, he was abused by a priest himself as a child; and Darlene Ellison via phone. She was married to a convicted pedophile.
Michelle, I`ll start with you. What do you make of all these?
MICHELLE GOLLAND, PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, I have to say, when I first heard this story, I wasn`t surprised that it was going to come out and be what appears to be very truthful. These two men, to me, seemed really credible.
PINSKY: Which - oh, the two that came forward, Dave and Stan?
GOLLAND: Originally. Yes, absolutely. And one of the things I think that`s so important is that people were saying, well, it`s just - it`s so strange that they`re brothers or stepbrother. And I think what`s important, Dr. Drew, and that we should get out as mental health professionals, is that it`s not at all surprising that an abuser would target a family and then use that idea that - that I know something about you and, you know, and then use the other child against the other one.
PINSKY: Particularly if they know it`s a - it`s a family system -
PINSKY: -- system that`s not working very well.
GOLLAND: Exactly. They pick it for a reason.
PINSKY: And - and, you know, families that aren`t working very well often have lots of secrets. We always say your secrets (INAUDIBLE) secrets.
PINSKY: But, Darlene, I want to go out to you, and if you could help people understand how someone could be involved with someone with these sorts of behaviors, and - and I don`t know if your case was where you actually knew your husband was a - was a molester. Did you know that?
DARLENE ELLISON, FORMER WIFE OF CONVICTED PEDOPHILE (via telephone): No, absolutely not.
PINSKY: Yes. And so help people understand, how do you get involved with and stay with that kind of a person? Do you - can you help them understand that?
ELLISON: I think so, and I think that, you know, both you and Michelle would agree that these individuals - and I`m going to say "him" and "he" just because that`s the majority of those numbers. It`s not necessarily men, but, in this particular case, these men know how to compartmentalize. And so, in our case in particular, it was almost as if our family, our healthy, happy, little family of four, was a facade.
And there are two ways of looking at it, you know, were we the facade to - so that he could continue behind the scenes - and - and not in our home, to clarify, but behind the scenes, to go on and - and continue to be a predator on young boys? And - or did he create this facade to help him somehow, in his sick mind, normalize what he felt like he needed to be to fit in with society.
PINSKY: Yes. That is a - that is a great way of thinking about this.
I - I wanted to listen to another chunk of these secretly recorded phone calls, again, allegedly between Bobby Davis - the kid that`s been coming forward, saying he was abused by Fine - and Laurie Fine, the wife. This is from ESPN.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
FINE (via telephone): I know everything that went on. You know, I know everything that went on with him. Bernie has issues. Maybe that he`s not aware of, but he has issues, and you trusted somebody you shouldn`t have trusted.
DAVIS (via telephone): Yes.
FINE: Bernie is also in denial. I think that he did these things he did, but he`s - somehow, through his own mental telepathy, has erased them out of his mind.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
PINSKY: David Clohessy, I want to go out to you next. This compartmentalization, this creating a sense of self that is very different from the perpetrator, is something you know something about.
DAVID CLOHESSY, DIRECTOR, SURVIVORS NETWORK OF THOSE ABUSED BY PRIESTS: Oh, absolutely. That`s just a chilling, chilling tape, and - and we in SNAP certainly hope the law enforcement investigates not just Bernie Fine but his wife and her role in all of this as well. It`s - it`s pretty clear that she either knew or had very strong suspicions and did nothing, and, in that sense, she`s not at all unlike the officials at Penn State University, who knew or had strong suspicions and kept silent.
And we`re pretty good as - as a society, going after the predators, but we`re terrible at going after the people who enabled the crimes, concealed the crimes, ignored the crimes, and people who set up an intimidating atmosphere, which is what the head coach at Syracuse has done with some of his harsh comments about these very victims who are speaking up.
PINSKY: David, I want to take us a little bit of left turn off of the - the road we`re on right now and ask you, do you think - I`ve been very concerned about college and university administration and how they sort of think of themselves, and I - I keep seeing tremendous parallels with the Catholic Church. Would you agree with that, that they consider themselves sort of they know best, they`re above the law, they`ll handle it internally? Doesn`t it sound just disgustingly familiar?
CLOHESSY: Oh, it`s painfully, painfully familiar. You`ve got largely all male hierarchies, you`ve got fans or church members that really almost worship these men, you`ve got, as you pointed out, this tendency to deal with crimes internally, secretly.
You know, we just have to get over the fact that - that predators look and talk and act and sound just like all the rest of us. They sound normal, and we have to get over the fact that even powerful popular figures, whether it`s a university president or whether it`s a bishop, or whether it`s a scout director, these popular powerful men oftentimes do in fact hide child sex crimes.
Neither the predators look like devils or monsters or demons, nor do their employers and enablers look, at first glance, like criminals.
PINSKY: I agree. I agree, and I - I think we`re uncovering something even - and not to minimize the profound seriousness we`re talking about here, but even something greater, that there`s things going on with the mental health of our youth at these institutions and the way these institutions are managed, that this is just the tip of the iceberg, I think.
I have to go to break. I wanted to talk about -
CLOHESSY: I think you`re right.
PINSKY: -- the women that get involved -
PINSKY: -- with these predators and how they, themselves, sometimes are sexual abuse survivors and -
PINSKY: I mean, I - I think that`s what we`re going to find here in Fine`s wife, don`t you agree?
GOLLAND: I agree. There is something terribly wrong.
PINSKY: Something wrong. We`ve got to go, though.
Still ahead, "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," I`ve got to tell you something, not a laughing matter. Not tonight. There`s a serious problem I need to address.
And, coming up, holiday shopping insanity. Why do some turn violent in the quest for Christmas presents? Do desperate times create desperate people?
PINSKY: We have been talking about the sexual abuse allegations at Syracuse University. Did the wife of the former coach in question know about the alleged abuse? Answers and information are at our new website, HLNtv.com. Check that out.
And now, for your questions and comments, first we`re going to start with Facebook. Susan writes, "Fine`s wife is as guilty as her sicko husband. I wish these people realize how they`ve altered the life of these kids."
Well, I - I agree with you, but realizing that they`ve affected other people`s lives. But, I`ll tell you what, we could hold her very much accountable. We`ve been talking about that so far tonight.
My guess is something happened to her, which is why she would be - feel OK about being involved intimately with a guy that she knows is engaged in this kind of behavior and then have no boundaries herself and engage in inappropriate sexual contacts, again, with young people. That`s somebody - you`re right, who`s in serious, serious trouble.
All right, let`s go to the phones. Amy in Pennsylvania, what`s on your mind?
AMY, GETTYSBURG, PENNSYLVANIA: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Amy.
AMY: I have a few questions.
AMY: How do the parents not know what is going on with their children, and how do the wives of these predators not know?
PINSKY: Well, the children, to answer that question first, they feel deeply ashamed and responsible for what`s going on. As we`ve seen in the Sandusky case, they often identify with the victimizer and don`t want to hurt them. So, they feel as though, if they come forward with this, it will be painful. It`s very difficult for them to speak up. It`s - for someone who`s never been through that, it`s hard to understand why it would be, but it is.
As far as the wives go, I think you`ve heard earlier, these guys compartmentalize. They - I mean, they do. It`s as though they are almost two different people and - or two different lives, and one life doesn`t interact with the other one in any way, and they are careful to keep them separated.
Michele in New York, go right ahead.
MICHELE, WELLSVILLE, NEW YORK: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Michele.
MICHELE: Why do the wives or girlfriends protect these men? Are they afraid? I just don`t understand a woman protecting a man that does these things.
PINSKY: Yes, it`s - it is hard to understand. And - and, as I said, oftentimes they themselves have been victims of something, and so they identify with the victimizer. They feel like they understand the injured child that`s in him, that they have a special understanding of that person.
You have to kind of - I`ve talked to a lot of people that have been in these situations, and it`s a very peculiar way to have, looking at these guys that do these horrible things. It`s not OK.
Maria tweets, "Do you think pedophiles are drawn to positions where they know there will be vulnerable victims?"
Well, certainly that`s the case, and we`ve seen lots of evidence of that here, that, you know, it`s no accident that guys that become clowns or work in the circus or work in the carnivals - just saying.
Rick writes, "Laurie" - this is a Facebook question - "Laurie Fine said she thinks her husband was in denial about the allegations and stated that he didn`t think he would ever be punished. Does this scream narcissism?"
Well, again, it`s that compartmentalization, and all of these severe traumas created what we call narcissistic defense strategies, where people, they are out of touch with the feelings of themselves and feelings in other people. So, yes, it`s a - it`s a narcissistic defense, let`s say.
Jill tweets, "Do you think pedophilia is something you are born with?"
No. It is something that is induced. Let`s be fair. As we`ve said over and over again, as we`ve had to deal with these cases, the Sandusky case and otherwise, is that the vast, vast, vast - in fact, I`ve never seen it otherwise in my - my career - the majority of the perpetrators were themselves victims. You know, this doesn`t happen normally. It happens as a result of that trauma.
Now, it`s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year, but Black Friday brings out the very worst in our behavior. I hate what happened this weekend. Look at that. That is next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY (voice-over): Coming up, the frenzy for holiday gifts leaves shoppers bloodied and bruised. One man collapses and dies. Wow!
And later, a member of a prominent university band loses his life. The sheriff says it was the result of hazing. Was there a culture at Florida A&M that allowed this to happen? And was there attempt to cover it up?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(on-camera): Pepper spray, taser guns, passersby ignoring bloodied, fallen grandfather. I`m not talking about an episode of "CSI" or "Cops." I`m talking about shoppers across America on Black Friday. Watch this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Probably thousands of people still here at this Wal-Mart in Porter Ranch. L.A. City fire is in the back side of the Wal- Mart right now. There, you have a triage. They are treating these people for their minor injuries.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It looks just like a stampede, yes. All you heard was just as if there was a whole herd of animals coming through.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As you can see, it was like a mob. People were stepping on people.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now, this has not deterred any of the shopping that`s going on here at the Wal-Mart. The Wal-Mart is still open.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My eyes are burning! My eyes! My eyes!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I got the scent of mace. I (INAUDIBLE) is burning. I tried to get away from it as quickly as possible, because I didn`t think those are worth it. No deals with that.
PINSKY: I`m getting confused, though. I mean, those crowds look dangerous. Should we be carrying mace or a riot gear? How does this work exactly? Now, we spend Thanksgiving Day surrounded by the ones we love, enjoying the feast, giving thanks for all we have. And then, fast forward a couple of hours, we`re pepper spraying our neighbors and crawling over them to get a $3 waffle iron.
Really? That`s what we`re giving thanks for? Is that how it works? I get it. It`s a desperate economic time, and I can see no bigger evidence for the fact that we are consumed with consumerism. But we`re supposed to be thinking about what`s important, right? Thanksgiving, right?
Take another look at the chaotic scene that unfolded on Thanksgiving night at a Wal-Mart in Los Angeles. It happened moments after a woman allegedly doused fellow shoppers with pepper spray, apparently, because she wanted a discounted videogame console. About 20 people suffered minor injuries, including sore throats and skin irritation.
The woman, thankfully, turned herself in. She was released pending further investigation. Wow! I am back with clinical psychologist, Michelle Golland, Steve Kardian, a former police detective. Steve, using pepper spray on fellow shoppers, is that the intended use of pepper spray, that`s OK?
STEVE KARDIAN, FORMER POLICE DETECTIVE: Dr. Drew, only if she was in fear for her person, her safety, her life. Other than that, no, there`s no justification for the use of that spray.
PINSKY: Is she in really serious legal trouble for, basically, an assault on the people around her?
KARDIAN: She could face depending upon the statute in Los Angeles to dispensing a chemical irritant, if you will, and likely more of a violation such as harassment. I don`t think it`s going to constitute an assault, unless, that state has a specific statute that relates back to using chemical spray on a person when you`re not defending yourself.
PINSKY: All right.
KARDIAN: So yes, she`s got legal consequences.
PINSKY: All right. No doubt. Now, we have more disturbing video from Black Friday. We`re looking at the arrest here of a 54-year-old bloodied, unconscious grandfather at a Wal-Mart in Buckeye, Arizona. Police say he was shoplifting, but the man`s grandson told CNN that his grandfather grabbed a discounted videogame, put it under his shirt so the other shoppers jostling him for the game wouldn`t take it from him.
The man has reportedly been charged with resisting arrest and shoplifting. His wife says he is as good as can be expected, but he`s emotionally and mentally a wreck. And I want to remind people, he -- they, apparently, did some sort of a leg sweep on him which knocked him down, hit his head unconscious. A man that age knocked unconscious is going to have serious brain injury.
He`s not going to be the same potentially ever and certainly for a while. It`s not the three stooges, guys. We get whacked over the head and go on unconscious, and then, you shake your head and you wake up. Head injury particularly in that age group is very, very serious. David Chadd is the CNN iReporter who shot the video we`ve been watching. David, what did you see?
DAVID CHADD, CNN IREPORTER: My friend and I were there trying to buy a discounted videogame. And, it was just complete chaos. It was completely out of control. There was no order. There was five policemen there just monitoring the event, and there was absolutely no order to the whole event.
I didn`t get what I came there for, so I started walking out of the store, and I saw them bringing out Gerald Newman (ph), the man from the crowd in one handcuff, and basically, he was putting on the other handcuff while they were walking and pretty much out of nowhere he just leg sweep the guy.
He had both of his hands behind his back, so he fell flat on his face and was knocked unconscious, was completely bleeding all over. And, then, about ten minutes later, his grandson came and saw him unconscious, bloody all over the floor.
PINSKY: Wow. Now, we reached out to the Buckeye police department in Arizona for comment. Chief of police, Mark Mann (ph), told us the case has been turned over to the state police for an independent investigation. The arresting officer in question has been placed on leave. Chief Mann says that he hopes truth and justice will prevail.
Let`s take a look at a little more of the drama that unfolded on Black Friday. You know, you might think these folks are fighting to save thousands of dollars on big flat-screen TVs or expensive computers or something, but what you`re looking at here is a frenzy caused by a, get this, a $2 waffle iron.
Oh, Steve, I don`t know. You know, I`m very supportive of law enforcement, and there`s two things that occur to me. One was, what`s with these officers that knock an old man to the ground until he`s unconscious? Was that just, you know, an unfortunate rogue event or is it the behavior of these crowds that has the cops so freaked out that they`re behaving in a mob way themselves?
KARDIAN: Well, I think that the police officers, they`re above that, allowing the mob to do that to them. I`ve been teaching defense tactics more than 30 years. I taught police officers of all across the country around the world. I don`t teach a leg sweep. It`s for the purpose of all that body weight falling to the ground.
So, they`re going to have to take a look at their policy. See if that`s an approved technique and evaluate whether this was a trick, whether the man fell or was it intentional act to bring him to the ground. It looks horrible as we see it, this poor man bloodied and laying on the ground, but we`ve got to exercise options and view the available footage before he fell down.
PINSKY: All right. Now, finally, Michelle to you.
MICHELLE GOLLAND, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: Yes.
PINSKY: The behavior of mobs, the madness and behavior of mobs. People behave in ways in a mob that they wouldn`t behave as an individual.
GOLLAND: Absolutely not. I mean, in this situation, you were talking about the $2 waffle iron.
GOLLAND: I mean, all this does is allow people to express their already pent up desperation and aggression, but all of a sudden, if someone else wants it and there`s 20 people or like in there, there`s 45 people, they`re going to try to get it.
PINSKY: People have -- they characterize that as the medic desire that if somebody else wants it --
GOLLAND: Really, we look at this and we wonder why are these things happening. We have stores promoting this, creating this frenzy, and then, they don`t necessarily have the tools or the people.
PINSKY: The crowd control.
GOLLAND: The crowd control, and it is unsafe. I really hope that this situation now is going to be looked at, and really, stores are going to realize how they can`t promote this sort of mob mentality and expect it to be OK.
PINSKY: Unless, they have a riot squad handy. Literally, that`s what they`re going to need.
GOLLAND: To me, it`s like grow up.
PINSKY: Who? The store owners or the people?
GOLLAND: The people. I mean, would you ever -- we wouldn`t let our children behave this way.
PINSKY: We would not. But I don`t want to be insensitive to the fact that people are really feeling desperate. And I think this is a manifestation of that.
PINSKY: But I think --
GOLLAND: I would rather them put their energy somewhere else than worrying about a $2 waffle iron and hurting other people.
PINSKY: I agree. David Chadd, thank you and thank you for reporting on that on the scene. Steve Kardian, of course, thank you for joining us. Michelle, always thank you.
Still to come, the Kardashian marriage, it is more than just a messy divorce. There are some very serious problems there I`ve seen and I want to explain to you.
Next, a college band member dies on a football trip. The family suspects that hazing was the cause. When we come back, I`ll talk about the culture of hazing and how it needs to stop. Stay with us.
PINSKY: Welcome back. One of the most prestigious college marching bands in the world has been suspended after one of its members died. A death has been linked to hazing. Twenty-six-year-old Robert Champion played in the famed Florida A&M Marching 100 band. He collapsed on a bus after a football game last Saturday. Here are Robert`s parents speaking earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAM CHAMPION, ROBERT CHAMPION`S MOTHER: It needs to stop, and we want it to stop. My husband and I talked dearly about this, it needs to stop. And the whole purpose is to try to put it out there to let people know that a change, you have to make a change, and this needs to stop. No one wants to be standing in our shoes. No one wants to hear on a phone call that your son collapsed and died over the phone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: That was just awful. Thirty A&M band members were suspended earlier in the year for hazing. The fired band director says, quote, "It`s no secret, it`s just a culture. As much as I regret it, kids nowadays engage in it." Why do we have to beat down someone to prove their allegiance to a group?
Well, joining me tonight, CNN national correspondent, David Mattingly, attorney for Robert Champion`s family, Christopher Chestnut. Christopher, it`s such an awful story. How is the family doing now?
CHRISTOPHER CHESTNUT, ATTORNEY FOR CHAMPION FAMILY: They`re devastated. They remain devastated. There is an incurable emptiness that they are feeling. But there`s also an urgency within the family to articulate the issues of hazing to encourage people to come forward if they are being hazed, because as they said, they do not want anyone else to experience the devastation that they`re currently enduring.
PINSKY: And Christopher, don`t we hold the people in authority there to some accountability for this? I mean, the director, I guess, was suspended. Now, he wants his job back. Again, aren`t the people in authority, the administrators, responsible for what`s going on here?
CHESTNUT: Listen, it appears that Florida A&M did a cost benefit analysis on hazing and determined that the benefit of it outweighed the cost. And that ultimately cost Robert his life. We opine that culture of hazing doesn`t rest squarely on any one person`s shoulders, that this was a culture deeply embedded in the history of the family band.
This was a practice and procedure that the administration ignored. They turned a blind eye. They turned a deaf ear. And so, we`re demanding not only accountability but acknowledgment and correction.
PINSKY: Here is a former Florida A&M student, Ivery Luckey, talking about his experience being hazed in the marching band.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
IVERY LUCKEY, HAZED AT FLORIDA A&M: Yes. I was, you know, taking to a room, blindfolded, and paddled with, you know, they have these wooden paddles. And after the paddling stopped, it was actually physical blows, face slapping, just all sorts of things to cause pain and suffering.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: All right, Chris. I want to ask a difficult question. The African-American, the Black colleges, my friends that are African-American tell me in the black colleges, I was not aware of this, that the beat down and the branding and the hazing is at a whole other level than many other institutions in the country. Why and what needs to be done about it?
CHESTNUT: I`m not comfortable saying that this is an issue isolated to HBCU, Historically Black Colleges. I think that violence is prevalent throughout our society. I think this occurs at majority of institutions as well as Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Our concentration right now is on the band at Florida A&M University.
I haven`t heard of anyone dying as of recent as a result of physical hazing at any of the other institutions. So, I can`t attribute this to any other historically Black institution or institution of color. I don`t think this is a Black problem. I think it`s an American problem. I think, right now, it is a FAMU problem, and that`s what we intend to address it now.
PINSKY: I couldn`t agree with you more. It is a problem. I think -- all this stuff to me sort of feels bizarrely related, all the sexual abuse scandals, the hazing, a lot of, and I tell you, I have been talking on college campuses for years, and the amount of alcohol and sort of unwanted sexual contact that goes on, and administrators just go, kids will be kids.
What are you going to do? What are you going to do? And it seems like at Florida A&M, that`s sort of been the attitude. The band director, Julian White, earlier today, talking about the culture of hazing and why he wants his job back. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JULIAN WHITE, FAMU BAND DIRECTOR: I reported the hazing activities were confirmed by me, nobody else. The hazing activities were confirmed by Dr. Julian White. So, how would I be negligent or misconduct in not reporting the activities when I did report them?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: David Mattingly, so, once again, is it further up the food chain we need to direct our attention?
DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, there`s so much finger pointing going on right now, but the fact remains we have a 26-year- old young man who is dead, and authorities are saying that hazing was involved. This appears to be a very poorly kept secret of Florida A&M. Since this incident, we`ve heard from former students here talking about the hazing that they went through, involving paddles and physical blows over a period of hours.
We`ve heard from parents who say that they complained about their children being part of hazing at this school, but at the same time, the news that has been coming out, we hear the band director talking about in his defense how he sent this up the food chain, so to speak, to say that this is going on.
He says that he has been responsible for disciplining many students over the years for hazing, and that very rarely does the higher administration follow up with it with expulsions, further suspensions or any sort of criminal investigations. Remember, in the state of Florida, it`s a class three felony to be engaged in hazing. So, he may have --
PINSKY: But David, I got to interrupt you. I have to interrupt you. I`m so confused. What is it with the administrations that they don`t have time for class three felonies? It just seems to be what we`re hearing over and over again, whether the Sandusky case, the Fine case, or this case, which is like, yes, yes, there`s some bad stuff going on. Anyway, we got more important things to handle. What is that?
MATTINGLY: Right. I hear your frustration. And we`ve heard the same frustration from parents who have come forward and from former students. They say this has been going on for a long time, why hasn`t there been more openness, why hasn`t there been more done about it. And we`re hearing from Champion`s family today saying that they`re filing a lawsuit.
They`re not talking about any details about who they`re going to go after or who they`re going to hold accountable, but they say they want answers. First of all, how is this allowed to happen? They want to expose what they believe is a culture of hazing at this university and a culture of silence that goes with it.
Now, they talk about the silence involving the students themselves engaging in this, but does that silence extend further up into the administration? They want to see if they`re exposed as well.
PINSKY: Well, I think pretty clearly it does. And thank you, guys. Christopher, best of luck with this. And David as well, thank you for joining me.
Yes, there`s something going on here, and it`s deeply troubling. Now, we want to remind you that you can check out our must see, must share stories on HLNtv.com. Take a look what made tonight`s HLN top ten.
When we come back, this is another troubling thing. Did Kim Kardashian`s short-lived marriage, well, did it? I`m going to show -- look at that. That, ladies and gentlemen, is domestic violence. We`re going to talk about that when we get back.
KRIS HUMPHRIES, NBA PLAYER: I`m going to rub your face in it.
KIM KARDASHIAN, REALITY STAR: Stop. Aw! You just (EXPLETIVE DELETED) ruined my pedicure. Seriously, you (EXPLETIVE DELETED) my whole toe just broke in half. You always do this to me because you`re so rough.
HUMPHRIES: How am I rough? Relax!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Kim Kardashian punched, you just saw this, punched her soon to be ex-husband on last night`s premier of her reality show, "Kim and Courtney Take New York." Now, many of you probably tune in to see what happened in Kim`s 72-day marriage to Kris Humphries. But listen, what I saw here -- this caused all kinds of consternation amongst our producers and everybody here.
PINSKY: I brought Michelle to discuss it with me. It`s making me insane. What you`re saying there is domestic violence. And a lot of people watching this may not understand that. And I get that. It looks playful. What`s the big deal? It is a massive deal, and it`s important for everyone else. For Kris and Kim, listen, they`re separating. That`s over with.
This doesn`t need to be reported or anything, but anybody listening at home and viewing this has to understand the spectrum of domestic violence and this is an incontrovertible piece of evidence of someone engaged in a domestic violence relationship. Michelle, you`ve been involved in this field for how many years, 20 years?
GOLLAND: Twenty years.
PINSKY: And when it starts like that, it always starts like that. It starts with pushing, and shoving, and holding, and then, some punching.
PINSKY: Then, it`s the broken jaw and the emergency room.
GOLLAND: Right. Well, it starts very playful or people think that it`s playful.
PINSKY: Or it`s no big deal. Just punching him because he broke my toenail.
GOLLAND: Right. But again, it`s this idea, we wouldn`t let our children do this to each other, right?
PINSKY: You would say, no punching, use your words, not your hands. But the fact is, what we know about domestic violence, it is a massive problem in our culture. It`s illegal, and it goes to a bad place, it progresses. It starts and goes. It doesn`t stay right here.
GOLLAND: It doesn`t matter.
PINSKY: The size, gender doesn`t matter.
GOLLAND: Does not matter.
PINSKY: It goes to a horrible, horrible place. And so, anyway, watching that, what`s the big deal? There`s no big deal.
GOLLAND: OK. Let me explain to you also why it`s such a big deal. It`s because it starts this way playful, then add a little drinking, then add that I have resentment against you because you whatever did something else two weeks ago, and then, I`m going to start taking that stuff out because what this is is unconscious behavior that is dangerous.
PINSKY: Let`s quickly look at the tape. Let`s just look at it again one more time. You`ll see that -- you know -- well, there it is with her punching straight up. And look at the way Kris is grabbing her. That`s not OK.
GOLLAND: Where you can see in her -- she was -- that was not a little like oh, ha, ha. That wasn`t even that.
PINSKY: Even ha, ha`s, you know, you got to be very aware of this stuff. This is serious stuff. Michelle and I see this out in the world every day. It`s because people minimize this stuff until it gets to the emergency room. Then, they`re wondering what happened.
PINSKY: This is the point you need to be aware that you`re in trouble and you need help.
GOLLAND: And this is not what you do. You do not touch and hurt your partner in any way.
GOLLAND: But you know, again, let`s face that. I could only imagine how many --
PINSKY: Well, there`s emotional abuse that goes --
GOLLAND: Absolutely or like verbal abuse, calling people names. I have to deal with that all the time in my couple`s counseling.
GOLLAND: That people think that it`s OK to treat each other this way.
PINSKY: It`s not OK and it is a progressive problem. Now, thank you, Michelle.
I want to let you know, we reached out to Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries people and themselves, but haven`t from anybody about my concerns. So, we certainly encourage any of you that want to talk about this, maybe tomorrow on the on-call segment, and certainly, Kris and Kim, if you like to address it, we`d be happy to talk about it.
Thanks for watching. We`ll see you next time.