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Verdict Watch for Love Triangle Murder; Hit-and-Run Suspect Adopts Girlfriend

Aired February 2, 2012 - 19:00   ET


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Good evening. Jane Velez-Mitchell coming to you live from New York City.

A billionaire adopts his 42-year-old girlfriend after allegedly killing a student in a car crash. Is he protecting his assets or protecting his butt? The details next.


VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight, outrage after a wealthy polo socialite accused in a deadly hit-and-run drunk driving accident makes a shocking legal move. He just adopted his 42-year-old girlfriend. Critics say it`s all to protect his fortune as the victim`s family comes after him in court. Could his bizarre adoption actually work?

And up to 20 more women come forward after a Connecticut doctor is charged with raping a patient in an exam room. Now, the doctor`s firing back against his accusers. I`ll talk live to one of his patients.

Plus, breaking news: we`re on verdict watch in the trial of a scorned wife who stabbed her husband to death after he cheated on her with a beautiful blonde. Will the jury rule she killed him in a fit of rage? Will the jury give her a relative slap on the wrist? Or could she go to prison for up to life?

And did NFL legend Deion Sanders demand sexual favors from his estranged wife in exchange for money? She claims he`s holding her financial hostage. What? We`re taking your calls.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Those stories coming up next, but first, we are in verdict watch on the deadly love triangle case going on right now in San Diego. A scorned wife accused of stabbing her husband at least ten times, the jury deliberating her fate as we speak. We could have a verdict any moment now.

Our producer, Selin Darkalstanian, at the courthouse. What is happening right now, Selin?

SELIN DAKALSTANIAN, HLN PRODUCER: Jane, the jury is still deliberating behind me. They`re going into their seventh hour of deliberations. We still don`t have a verdict.

The -- the feeling in the courtroom, everyone`s really nervous. The victim -- the victim`s family was here yesterday. And Jen Trayers, the woman on -- on trial, her entire family is outside. Her mom has been pacing back and forth in the hallway all day long. I`ve been watching her. The court broke for lunch. She didn`t even go to lunch. She sat there pacing back and forth.

Everybody`s very nervous and waiting, and the jury still does not have a verdict. They have not reached a verdict, and we`re going into the eighth hour of deliberations.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Thank you, Selin. Keep monitoring the situation. We`re going to play for you the wife and the mistress facing off on the witness stand in a moment. But first, this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A 48-year-old millionaire legally adopted his 42-year-old girlfriend, allegedly to protect his money.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: John Goodman, he`s a Florida billionaire, also accused of DUI, manslaughter and vehicular homicide.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The man, investigators claim, had a blood alcohol level more than twice the legal limit. The man, they say, walked from the scene and didn`t call 911 for nearly an hour.

Deputies dig through a Bentley convertible sitting on the bank of the canal as a tow truck pulls another car out of the water.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He adopted his 42-year-old daughter?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: A firestorm of outrage tonight. A billionaire playboy who cops say killed somebody driving drunk, legally adopts his 42- year-old girlfriend. Critics are calling it a dirty trick to protect his billions from the family suing him.

The socialite defendant -- you see him there smirking in court -- is the founder of the posh International Polo Club in wealthy Palm Beach, Florida. Now, we`ve obtained video of his Polo Club straight from his Web site, showing you the kind of glamour only available to the superrich, but in this perfect world of high society, mansions on the beach, there was a horrible event.

Cops say John Goodman was driving drunk when he struck and killed a young college student, Scott Wilson, who was driving home for his sister`s birthday when the billionaire crashed his Bentley into the young man`s car. Goodman was actually caught smiling on a hospital stretcher, but he may not be smiling for long. Next month he faces two trials, one civil, one criminal.

So why did this guy adopt his adult girlfriend, Heather Hutchins, seen right there? Goodman has hundreds of millions of dollars in a trust for his kids. If she is legally one of his kids, she gets access to that money.

The lawyer for the victim`s family says John Goodman has effectively gained ownership or direct control of one third of the trust, and "it cannot go unrecognized that he chose to adopt his 42-year-old adult girlfriend as opposed to a minor child."

Here`s the victim`s distraught mom on "The Today Show."


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is very difficult not knowing what happened. Not knowing if he could have been saved.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look at that handsome young man. He is dead tonight.

Call me: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.

Straight out to Laura Dean Mooney, whose husband was killed by a drunk driver.

Laura, you`re a national leader in fighting drunk driving. Your reaction to this defendant adopting his adult girlfriend?

LAURA DEAN MOONEY, HUSBAND KILLED BY DRUNK DRIVER: Well, Jane, I think this gives a whole new meaning to who`s your daddy? But most importantly for victims like myself, it`s what he is doing to this young man`s family that is outrageous, that is unacceptable.

And let`s take personal responsibility. I get it: he`s trying to protect his money. If he is convicted, though, of this crime of drunk driving and killing this young man, and if his -- Mr. Wilson`s parents get a settlement in this wrongful death lawsuit, he needs to man up.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I would agree with you, and I`ve got to tell you, we reached out to his attorneys, because we always try to get both sides.

Look at this horrific crash, by the way.

In response to this adoption uproar. John Goodman`s lawyer says, "Nothing in this arrangement with Ms. Hutchins" -- that`s the girlfriend`s name -- "is illegal. Mr. Goodman cannot have a beneficial interest in the trust. The legal adoption of Ms. Hutchins does not change that in any way."

So let`s face off with the lawyers. I want to ask them right now, Joe Episcopo and Joey Jackson. Joe Episcopo, my producer told me that you think this is A-OK, that you think it`s totally legal to adopt your adult girlfriend? Are you kidding me?

JOE EPISCOPO, LAWYER: Yes. Yes, and it`s very interesting. What he did here was raid the children`s trust account. The creditors are never going to be able to get to that. But he probably needs cash so he`s raided it, by bringing another child into the equation, allowing her to have one third.

Now, here`s the beauty of this mechanism. He doesn`t have control of it, but he can have agreements with her regarding it. So in effect, he`s laundering his assets to get around his creditors, and it`s perfectly legal.

Now, here`s the interesting other part of it. This is not only his daughter, but she`s his girlfriend. And under Florida law, if he has an intimate relationship with her, it`s not incest, because he`s not related by blood. So he gets the best of both worlds: his money and his girlfriend, and he`s able to, I guess, defend himself in court.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Unbelievable. OK, on the other side, I hope Joey Jackson has some other thoughts on this, because it`s outrageous. This man, this billionaire, John Goodman, faces 30 years in prison if he`s convicted. And, oh, my gosh. DUI manslaughter, vehicular homicide, leaving the screen of the crash, he`s charged with all that.

According to cops, he had a blood alcohol level that is twice the legal limit when he ran a stop sign and slammed into the victim`s car which then sank into a canal. Cops say Goodman then walked away from the crash on foot and did not call 911, so an ambulance didn`t immediately race to the scene. This young man died from drowning, meaning authorities say he could have been saved, had Goodman raced to help immediately.

So I`ve got to say, Joey Jackson, criminal defense attorney, these two -- we`re going to show a picture of Goodman and his girlfriend. They`ve been going out for about two years. If he gets convicted of a crime, and she`s there as his legal adopted daughter, what if she decides to break up with him and splits?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: She could decide to do a number of things, Jane. Let`s put this this way. OK? I will take the other side of it.

The analysis here is whether or not this agreement was predicated upon fraud. Was this something he was doing? Let`s go back to the actual statute itself.

It talks about adoption as being a relationship between a parent and a child. It was not the purpose; it was not the intent; it was not the reason that Mr. Goodman did this, to establish a parent/child relationship. It was -- the reason he did it was to evade the creditors. If you`re evading someone you potentially could be in debt to, it could be viewed by the court as a sham. If it is viewed by the court as a sham, legal or not, it will be evaluated and overturned. This is the analysis that it will go into.

The fact is, is that you don`t just do this because you`re looking to have a daughter. You`re doing this so that you can protect your assets. Inappropriate, unlawful, it`s coming back on appeal.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Unbelievable. Well, one thing I think we`ve all learned is that high society can be plagued with despicable people doing despicable things. Hollywood knows this very well. You remember the Oscar-winning movie "Reversal of Fortune," based on a real-life story. This from YouTube and Warner Home Video.


JEREMY IRONS, ACTOR: When I married Sonya, she was the most beautiful divorcee in the world. Now, she`s one of the wealthiest.

GLENN CLOSE, ACTRESS: Marry me for my money, then you demand to work. You`re the prince of perversion.

IRONS: And you`re a gentleman who`s given the opportunity to end things properly.

RON SILVER, ACTOR: You`re a very strange man.

IRONS: You have no idea.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, that movie was about the infamous Claus von Bulow, who was eventually found not guilty of trying to murder his socialite wife.

Now, I want to bring Susan Constantine, body language expert, in as we take a look at John Goodman, this billionaire. Let`s show some video of him.

First of all, right after the accident you see him smiling, while he`s on a gurney. Then you see his expression here. He`s got this sort of -- what I would call an arrogant smirk.

This is a guy who inherited his money. His dad built an air- conditioning fortune from his bootstraps. And this kid was born wealthy. He`s 48 years old now. And there he is. You see two, three -- right there. There he is walking to court. He has that smirk. There`s money and then there`s class, Susan Constantine?

SUSAN CONSTANTINE, JURY CONSULTANT: Yes. You know, I`ve seen this way too many times, Jane. And this is a very arrogant guy. He thinks he`s going to beat the odds. And you know, he`s getting a sense of enjoyment out of it, a big deal. He`s like landing a great big deal. So he`s getting enjoyment and enlightenment out of thinking that, can I really bluff them through? Can I get through this?

But really, what`s belying all that is a lot of fear and insecurity. He`s falsifying the smile with this condescending smirk, which is duping delight. And also, it`s also called contempt. He thinks that he`s pulling one over on us and he`s duping us. I`m going to tell you, that`s not going to go very well with this jury.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, yes. That`s right. All of this, we wonder if it`s tainting the jury pool. Because they`re going to pick a jury to hear his DUI case and his vehicular homicide case.

We`re taking your calls. Sandra, Texas, hang on. We`ll get you on the other side: 1-877-JVM-SAYS.

Coming up, a Connecticut doctor is charged with raping a patient, and now up to 20 more women are coming forward, leveling other accusations against this doctor.

Plus, more on this billionaire`s bizarre maneuver to adopt his own 42- year-old girlfriend.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Those adoptions happen often in certain legal (ph) situations. I have not ever heard of anything like this ever. I suppose the argument`s going to be that she`s getting it by nature of the fact she`s your girlfriend, then you two are getting it.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A 48-year-old millionaire legally adopted his 42-year-old girlfriend, allegedly to protect his money.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: John Goodman, he`s a Florida billionaire, also accused of DUI, manslaughter and vehicular homicide.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. We`re going to show you video now from the International Polo Club that was founded by the defendant, John Goodman. He`s a 48-year-old heir to an air-conditioning fortune, but he`s hot under the collar tonight because he is facing a criminal and a civil trial.

Cops say he was driving drunk when he ran his Bentley into a car, killing a young man. The family of that young man devastated and suing this billionaire, who then adopts his 42-year-old girlfriend in what has been generally characterized as sort of a clever or, depending on how you see it, a dirty move to protect his assets from the family that lost a son they can never get back.

Let`s go out to the phone lines. They`re lighting up. Sandra in Texas, your question or thoughts, Sandra. Hey, Sandra, are you there? Hello, Sandra.

All right. Let me go back to Laura Dean Mooney, because this is really at the heart of this case, even though we`re showing you all sorts of scenes of polo and high society. It`s really about somebody drinking too much, getting behind the wheel and driving.

MOONEY: You`re exactly right, Jane. And I know you covered this quite often. Every day and across the United States people are killed or injured by drunk drivers. It`s a problem that`s continually happening. There`s been many efforts made to lower those numbers. And they have been lowered, fortunately.

But a family like this is suffering. They can`t get their son back. They`re going through another means, just as I did, by filing a wrongful death lawsuit.

Let`s have some personal responsibility. As I said, let`s make sure that he`s held criminally responsible, and hopefully, the court system there in West Palm Beach will do so. But he also needs to take responsibility financially for the actions, and not go do this bogus nonsense of marrying his girlfriend, who`s now become his daughter. It is ridiculous. It is insulting.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: This guy had that kind of arrogance and haughty attitude that one sees from people who inherit money, and that`s pretty much all they`ve done in their lives is inherit money. His dad is the one who built an air-conditioning company from next to nothing, pulling himself up by his bootstraps and making hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars.

And this guy, you know, he inherited the money. He went to boarding school, and then he gets into playing polo. And then he founds this Polo Club.

Probably the most famous polo scene in the movies is from a real classic, "Pretty Woman." Check it out, from Warner Home Entertainment.





VELEZ-MITCHELL: Julia Roberts famously had no idea what to do, because unlike everyone else in the scene, she`s not stinking rich.

I want to go to Joe Episcopo, criminal defense attorney. You`re down there in Florida. We all know how wealthy the Palm Beach area is and how - - how much it can cost to get into polo. How loaded do you have to be to get involved in the world of polo?

EPISCOPO: First of all, it`s the exclusiveness of the group that makes that money value what it is. They can make it as high as they want, to make it as exclusive as they want.

But let me say something else. I disagree with all this arguing that he`s wealthy; he`s able to do this. I disagree with my colleague. The adoption`s valid in Florida. Any of us, if we want to adopt an adult, the adult has to be competent and has to accept. And all you have to do is notify her parents. If they want to object they can. So it didn`t have anything to do with his wealth that he was able to adopt. And it is a legal adoption, and it will pass.

What they`re trying to attack is her getting a share of the children`s estate. That`s the issue.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, well, I`ve got to tell you. You can adopt anybody I want. I`m not adopting you, Joe Episcopo, or that opinion, because I don`t agree with it. But of course, I respect you.

And on the other side, in just a moment, you are going to see our viral video of the day. It`s a hoot.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: More of the polo player in a minute, but first, your viral video of the day.





UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The man, investigators claim, had a blood alcohol level at least twice the legal limit. A man they say walked from the scene and didn`t call 911 for nearly an hour.

Deputies dig through a Bentley convertible sitting on the bank of the canal, as a tow truck pulls another car out of the water.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He adopted his 42-year-old daughter?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Creepy. And legally, it`s not incest, because she`s an adult, and she is not related to him by blood. It`s unbelievable.

This -- this guy is accused of vehicular manslaughter, leaving the scene of an accident, and he`s a billionaire. So he legally adopts the girlfriend you`re seeing here.

Critics say it`s all so the young man he killed, his family can`t get his money in a civil case that`s coming up next month, along with a criminal trial.

You know, this all kind of reminds me of the whole O.J. Simpson thing, when he was found not guilty in the criminal trial but, of course, he lost in the civil case, and he was ordered to pay huge amounts, millions, to the family of Ron Goldman.

Listen to what O.J. said at one point.


O.J. SIMPSON, LOST LAWSUIT: First of all, I`m not forced to pay the money. Unless they get the money. If I participated -- I said this so many times. I said at debtor hearings. If I have to work to pay them, I won`t work.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: O.J. reportedly tried to hide his money. He had a pension that couldn`t be touched. He would, according to published reports, sign autographs for cash and then take the money.

So is this shades of O.J.? We`re going to go out to the phone lines and try it again. This time, Mike in Florida. Your question or thought, Mike? Mike? All right.

CALLER: Hi, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hey, there, Mike. How are you doing?

CALLER: I`m doing OK.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What is your question?

CALLER: I drive by -- I drive by (UNINTELLIGIBLE).


CALLER: I drive by there, and I see the grave. They have the makeshift...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The makeshift memorial.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Where the crash occurred?

CALLER: And what they do is, I`m kind of really sad about it, because the guy walked away from his problems.


CALLER: And I`m just, you know, more curious. Why would you walk away from the accident if it was an accident? But then again, like you said, he was legally drunk.

And it`s just not right that -- you know, I got four children. And God forbid if I go by there every day, I live in Lake Worth, and what it is -- when I live in Lake Worth and I drive by there every day to go out there...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, yes. OK, Mike, I`m getting the essential point that you`re making here. And essentially, Joey Jackson, the reason why he`s being charged with all of these things -- DUI manslaughter, vehicular homicide, leaving the scene of an accident -- is cops say he went through a red light driving his Bentley and was drinking. He had something like twice the legal limit, according to cops, and smashes into this kid. And then walks away while the kid drowns.

JACKSON: Absolutely, Jane. There will be a trial, and there will be a couple of trials presumably, if the civil case doesn`t settle. Civil, of course, relating to the money and hiding the assets. There will be a trial. Criminally, there will be a trial to determine exactly what his conduct was. And if he`s found guilty, and if a jury doesn`t like what he did, they will find him criminally responsible.

But I tell you, Jane, to conclude this, he is not going to be able to keep that money, I`m telling you. It`s going to be voided.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And he can`t spend a lot of money behind bars if he`s convicted anyway.

Up next, a doctor in trouble.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have bruises in my chest. I have bruises in my kneecap. The detectives came, they took pictures --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She says her doctor, Edwin Njoku (ph), raped her in an exam room in his East Hartford practice.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As soon as the arrest hit the news yesterday, the phone calls started coming in.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She tells police that she told him "Stop, let me go" numerous times, but Njoku continued.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he`s being blackmailed because of this situation -- my daughter goes there, my family goes there. I just -- nothing.


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST: Tonight every woman`s worst nightmare. Imagine going to the doctor and then being raped. That`s exactly what at least four women say this doctor did to them. Dr. Edwin Njoku, a doctor of internal medicine in East Hartford, Connecticut charged with first degree sexual assault tonight.

But cops say after his arrest hit the news, they were flooded with calls from other women, alleging this doctor did the very same thing to them. The initial four women, two of them sisters say Dr. Njoku allegedly raped them in his exam room, taking advantage of them in their most vulnerable moment. One woman was brave enough to talk about her horrifying ordeal on camera. Listen to her.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The one who`s scarred forever is me. If there`s more victims out there, please, just come out.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: That woman says Dr. Njoku felt her breasts when she came in to get records on a Saturday, and there was nobody else in the office. He said, "You know what; I want to give you an exam. I want to check you for breast cancer." And then he started touching her breasts, and then he pushed her down, got on top of her, pulled down her pants. And she all the while claims she was screaming, "Stop, stop, stop".

Cops say her rape kit came back positive with the doctor`s DNA. Dr. Njoku`s attorney says these women are not credible. Listen.


WILLIAM GERACE, DR. NJOKU`S ATTORNEY: This is outrageous. The man`s been in this country for 35 years. He`s a citizen, a thriving medical practice.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: We called that attorney, no response. He`s invited on our show any time. But what do you think about this? Have you ever had an experience that is like this in some way, shape or form?

Give me a holler, 1-877-586-7297.

Straight out to reporter Len Besthoff with WFSB; Len, you talked to that brave woman who came forward, the story tonight, mushrooming. What do you know about other women coming forward, Len?

LEN BESTHOFF, REPORTER, WFSB: Well, you know, we have been talking to East Hartford Police which was the initial investigating agency. They say at last count they`ve had 23 calls, Jane, 23 calls of people either saying that they had complaints about this doctor or he touched them or they just wanted to give information to police on other cases that they were aware of.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, stand by, because we want to get back to you with some more details.

But first, we have somebody who`s defending the doctor. Despite the rape allegations there are patients who are standing behind this doctor. Listen to this.


RENA BROGDON, DAUTHER IS PATIENT OF NJOKU: I just think he`s being blackmailed because of this situation. My daughter goes there. My family goes there. Just, you know, nothing.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Dr. Cathleen London, you`re the assistant professor of medicine in New York Presbyterian Weill Cornell, a family medicine physician. Here`s the problem I have, back in 2009 there was a previous case with eerie parallels involving the same doctor.

Cops say a 24-year-old woman told cops that she went to Dr. Njoku for back pain. And that he at the time felt her breast, pressed himself against her. They were both clothed. The woman said after the encounter Dr. Njoku offered to increase her Percocet prescription. Now, I`m wondering why the 2009 case was not followed to some kind of charge or in some way, that this case was brought to some kind of conclusion, it was just allowed to languish there. Apparently they said they did not have enough evidence to fight charges.

And then a couple years later, we`ve got this, and now we have phones ringing off the hook with similar claims. What do you make of it, doctor?

DR. CATHLEEN LONDON, FAMILY MEDICINE PHYSICIAN: Well, I think that, you know, if you look he also has a significant addiction medicine practice. He`s a prescriber of Suboxone, which you need a special license to do. These are people coming with pain who are seeking pain meds. So it sounds like he`s also taking advantage of a vulnerable population.

You know, I`m not surprised that there are also patients who are supporting him, because he -- it sounds like he`s savvy enough to know who he can potentially try something on, and clearly a lot of women stayed quiet a really long time, which is really sad and awful.

And I think it`s probably because they feel vulnerable that maybe they do have issues, and he`s taking advantage of that. So that would be my guess here.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I mean, let`s face it, a doctor is the only other person that you`re not intimately involved with who has the excuse to touch your body and your private parts.

And if a doctor says, well, this woman -- the woman who`s accusing him, Ms. Drago. We heard from her a moment earlier. She told cops that she contacted this doctor October 21st, because she needed her medical records. The doctor had been treating her for back problems for three years.

Now, she says she -- Dr. Njoku told her, well, come back the next day, that happened to be a Saturday. And she says when she arrived she was the only one in the office. And then, Len Besthoff, as I understand it, he proceeded to say, allegedly -- he hasn`t been convicted and his attorney or the doctor himself are invited on to our program any time at all if he makes bail, I don`t know if he has. You can tell us about that too, Len. Yes, he has -- I`ve just been told in my ear.

Apparently he then says, look, I want to test you for breast cancer, let me feel your breasts. Is that correct, Len?

BESTHOFF: Yes, that is what the arrest warrant affidavits say. And it`s not like you said, the first time that an alleged victim has said something like this, so it does sound like there could be some kind of pattern here, if this all bears out.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I got to say, that this is very, very upsetting. One thing that really struck me, after reading the arrest affidavit and all the papers is that one woman said after the alleged rape, the doctor asked her, "You weren`t looking for this?" And another said, he told her, "That`s what you were looking for."

So, in essence as we wrap up briefly, Dr. London, it would seem that this doctor is sort of making an assumption that these women were asking to be touched and allegedly violated?

LONDON: This is crazy, and this is rape if this bears out to be true. I really want to say a couple things here, if a doctor wants to examine you and there`s no one else in the office, leave. If a doctor is going to examine your private parts and you want someone else in the room, you have that right, whether it`s a same sex or different sex physician. You have a right to have someone else present in the room.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: As a matter of fact, every time I have had any kind of gynecological exam or any kind of exam that involves private parts, there`s always been two people in the room, a doctor and a nurse it. And it seems to be standard operating procedure -- not operating -- but standard procedure in these kinds of cases. So that`s what I would tell women who are watching, you`re going to your gynecologist or a doctor and you`re going to have a take-your-clothes-off kind of exam. Let`s make sure there`s two people in the room and that there`s other people in the office.

Up next, is NFL great, Deion Sanders demanding his estranged wife give him sex in return for spending money? That`s what she`s claiming.

And we`re also on verdict watch: will a jury find this wife guilty of murder one for stabbing her husband, who was cheating on her, ten times? We`re taking your call, 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.


JENNIFER TRAYERS, ON TRIAL FOR MURDER OF HUSBAND: I was just so angry and mad and I didn`t know what was going on, what was happening, why he was acting the way he was acting. And I was just -- I didn`t know what was going to happen.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The evidence toward this defendant, Jennifer Trayers is guilty of murder in the first degree. She wants a discount from you for the murder of her husband.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does that show someone who`s a cold-blooded calculated murderer. Does that who`s in a total uncontrollable rage, who`s not thinking about what they`re doing, who`s still stabbing after their husband is dead?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: We are in verdict watch as we speak, in the deadly love triangle murder case in San Diego. A decision could come in from this jury at any moment. The wife of a popular handsome navy doctor completely snapped after she discovered he was having an affair with a younger blonde medical student.

There`s the trio. She stabbed him at least ten times, once straight through the heart after she fired off an angry eight-page e-mail to his mistress. The defense says this was a crime of passion, no premeditation here. Give her just a slap on the wrist.

The prosecution argues, this is cold-blooded, premeditated murder. And now it`s up to the jury to decide.

Straight out to our producer, Selin Darkalstanian, she`s been at the courthouse all day, all over this case. What is the latest, Selin?

SELIN DARKALSTANIAN, ISSUES PRODUCER: Jane, the jury has just left and gone home for the day. They do not have a verdict yet. Apparently, they need more time to decide if they think Jen Trayers premeditated and planned to kill her husband or if it was in a moment of rage.

So they need more time. They deliberated for about eight hours. They couldn`t come up with a decision. The judge asked them if they want to come in tomorrow, they said no. So they`ll be back on Monday at 9:00 a.m., and they`re going to continue to deliberate. So we do not have a verdict yet and we`ll be back on Monday.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I have to say, this trial is so graphic, honestly, this is happening in San Diego. But I`m sure that script writers in Hollywood are all over this. This has to be one of those "Lifetime" movies because you cannot make this stuff up. The evidence photos graphic.

But there are some that you need to see to understand this case. Take a look at the doctor, the victim, Dr. Trayers` hand. If you look carefully, this is how he was found dead by cops when they burst into the home. His hand is clenched and in his clenched fist he grasps one of his wife`s hairs. At the time she had black hair.

So this would appear to show that he struggled and fought back through a haze of Ambien because he had taken Ambien shortly before his wife repeatedly stabbed him to death.

Joey Jackson, criminal defense attorney, there are three possibilities here: Murder One, which is 25 to life; then you have Murder Two, which is - - well, there`s no premeditation; and then there`s what the defense wants, which is voluntary manslaughter. She could get as little as -- the one in the gray hair with the glasses -- as little as three years, if the jury decides, well, she just snapped, she didn`t premeditate this, and he had pushed her to the edge with his affair.

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You`re absolutely right, Jane. Listen this comes down to passion versus premeditation. The prosecution wants the jury to believe, of course, that he was sleeping, having taken pills, and at that time she in a premeditated fashion, killed him.

The defense on the other hand is saying, no, it`s heat of passion. It`s a crime of rage. Why else would there be so many stab wounds. And that distinction right there Jane is what makes the difference between the minimal sentence that you suggested and one that could mean 26 years.

How will it play out? Well, it will be a long weekend for the jury to think about what they heard during that trial and ultimately to consider facts on both sides. I wish I can tell you, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I -- the fact that they are deliberating this long tells me that they are having a real debate over whether this was premeditated or not. The wife said she told her husband just before this all erupted that she wanted to kill herself, and she had a knife and she was kind of poking herself, he laughed and mocked her.

Listen to this.


TRAYERS: Kind of like, are you kidding me? And he started laughing. Just like, are you joke something like he didn`t think I was serious. Then he told me that that knife was not sharp enough. I couldn`t believe what I was hearing. I was like, are you kidding me? I`m expecting him to stop me and -- I just couldn`t believe what I was hearing.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, the mistress, much younger, medical students at the center of this, she`s a beautiful blonde, she took the stand herself. Let`s hear from her. Then we`re going to get a call.


DANIELLE ROBINS, MISTRESS OF VICTIM: We would exchange at least a couple of text messages daily, and then have phone conversations. I was the only active duty medical student on the ship. The other medical students were civilian and being a little bit older and prior officer military, just the age and the group that I -- most assimilated with were the residents.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: They met on a navy ship that became the love boat and they were rocking that boat.

Let`s go out to the phone lines. Rose, Georgia, your question or thought, Rose?

ROSE, GEORGIA (via telephone): Hi, Jane.


ROSE: I love your show.


ROSE: And if you can let Nancy Grace know that I love her to death. I`m surprised I finally got through.


Well, Nancy, if you`re watching, and I think you probably are, you`re getting ready to come on in just about 12 minutes. So, you`ve it along right there. What`s your question or thought?

ROSE: I just have a comment. I believe that they need to find her guilty. There`s no excuse to do what she did. After the first stab, she knew what she was doing, she had it planned from the start.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, here`s the thing, though, I want to talk a little bit about the wild card in this entire case. That wild card is Ambien. And Ambien is something that they were taking. The husband really, I think, to try to shut her up from complaining and threatening suicide, said let`s crunch up some Ambien, put it in orange juice and drink it. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: After this event happened she took those ten Ambien out of the bottle. That`s why the bottle would be laying on her side of the bed where she was on the floor on the east side of the bed.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Briefly, Susan Constantine, Ambien can make people do very, very crazy things. Could she have been in some kind of fugue?

SUSAN CONSTANTINE, BODY LANGUAGE EXPERT: I think she was. You know, I read through this entire trial, you know, today. And I`ve worked on cases very similar to this. And you know the difference in this one here is that I don`t believe that he was asleep and then she just went into this rage. When I`m listening to her speak, she sounds quite thoughtful and she really sounds believable when she`s telling you the story.

And I have to tell you, I think that this is truly a crime of passion. That he kind of egged her on, she lost it, and she just went from that point on she went nuts.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, a lot of women, especially those who have been cheated on agree with you. We`ll keep on verdict watch.

Up next, Deion Sanders in big trouble.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: Guess who`s on a divorce collision course. And it`s getting ugly. Deion Sanders and his wife looked so happy on their reality show, "Primetime Love" on Oxygen.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Deion could you please get up and help me?

DEION SANDERS, NFL PLAYER: That`s not going to happen, sorry.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You see I`m cleaning up, you can`t just get up and get some tea?

SANDERS: We have to play our roles.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are roles. I do this for you all the time, Deion.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: NFL legend Deion Sanders` divorce getting nasty even though the couple has a million dollar pre-nup. His wife of 12 years, Pilar, says Deion is holding her financially hostage, and she doesn`t even have money for food.

She filed an emergency motion saying, quote -- are you sitting down people -- "Deion offered her money in exchange for sexual favors." What? And has been harassing her by "systematically removing my belongings and throwing them into piles in the garage".

Deion fighting back tonight saying he never offered money for sex and that she`s trying to extort him, quote, "Pilar has continued to make false statements in an attempt to extort additional money, in spite of the generous pre-nup that she signed voluntarily."

Straight up to Mike Walters, TMZ all over this story; what do you know, Mike.

MIKE WALTERS, TMZ: Well, Jane, like you said this divorce is getting nasty. Not only is she saying that the only way Deion will give her money is for sexual favors, she`s also saying that she basically is being held hostage. That he`s cancelled her credit cards, that she has no car, and she`s basically stuck in this house outside of Dallas, Texas, not being able to do anything. And the only way she alleges that she can do anything, and get any money, is to do some sort of sexual act.

So this is getting crazy. Now I should say Jane, that there is a pre- nup. She gets a million dollars if they get divorced plus a house that`s worth anywhere from $9 million to $12 million. Sounds ok to me but he`s worth about $50 million so she knows she might want to challenge the pre- nup and hopefully get herself a $25 million payday. But I don`t think this is going to end any time soon. It`s getting real nasty.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: This is so crazy. You know, they should do a reality -- wait a second, they already have a reality show. We have seen Pilar`s temper.

WALTERS: Yes. Good TV.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Let`s take a look at a clip from "Football Wives".


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you so much --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Baby, I don`t need to learn. What I`m doing is I`m saying you honey.






UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You need to really learn how to, honey.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Praise the lord. Make sure you answer the phone, now. Hater. You leaving, we`re going to have a beer, (EXPLETIVE DELETED).


VELEZ-MITCHELL: I just coined a new diagnosis: reality show psychosis. Are they ramping up the drama? I mean, Mike, you apparently found out that he sent over a $10,000 cashier`s check and she turned it down? Well, if you send over a cashier`s check, it doesn`t sound like you`re asking for sexual favors unless you want her to do a lap dance for the delivery boy.

WALTERS: Well, yes. But Jane, but what he doesn`t say is that a part of the $10,000 check, there`s a contract that basically said, this is a part of your million dollars that you signed in your pre-nup, so it`s going to be subtracted. But remember she signs that contract and takes the $10,000, she`s ratifying the fact that the pre-nup is valid. She wants to challenge it, so she turned away the money.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s just wild. So many people upside down in their homes;, I did a story which is going to air on Monday, where I go through the garbage with people who have lost their jobs to find food. And we eat it, by the way. You`ve got to check it out, this coming Monday.

And yet people with massive amounts of money fighting like this, it just strikes me as so inane, but of course it`s fascinating, so we`re going to talk more about it in just a moment with Mike.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Football hall of famer Deion Sanders in a nasty divorce. He`s also apparently a singer -- I missed this. His hit ironically is entitled "Must Be the Money".




VELEZ-MITCHELL: Maybe the reason their marriage is in trouble is all those gorgeous women that are gyrating next to him, Mike Walters?

WALTERS: Oh, my gosh, yes, let`s just play the video. No, I love this.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, let`s just play the video. Seriously, why do they have their battles in public? We only have ten seconds.

WALTERS: You know, I think public shaming, it`s a good way to get an answer from your spouse, public shaming is what these celebrities do, Jane. It`s obvious.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, I mean, party on, guys, and let`s reduce the drama.

Nancy next.