CNN CNN


 

Return to Transcripts main page

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Possible Suspects in Laure Spierer`s Disappearance Now in Police Custody; Woman Behind Secret Agent Scandal Speaks Out

Aired May 4, 2012 - 19:00:00   ET

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


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST: Jane Velez-Mitchell coming to you from New York city.

Cops have a potential serial killer behind bars, accused of killing at least two women, possibly more. And now, investigators want to know if this man has anything to do with the disappearance of beautiful college student Lauren Spierer, who vanished nearly a year ago.

Cops have already dug up one body in this guy`s backyard. Could there be still other victims? That`s next.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight, a possible break in the case of missing Indiana University student, Lauren Spierer. Cops investigate a potential link between the beautiful 21-year-old`s disappearance and the local man accused of murdering multiple women. Lauren vanished after a night out with friends almost a year ago. Could she have fallen victim to this accused killer? We will investigate.

And the Colombian prostitute claiming to be at the center of the secret service scandal speaks out, detailing a booze-filled night of partying. She says she would have been able to get any information she wanted from the agents there to protect the president. You will hear what else she has to say tonight.

Plus, traumatic caused that leave at John Edwards` trial. We hear about wife, Elizabeth`s breaking point, a key witness describes how Edwards cancer-stricken wife, Elizabeth confronts the one time presidential candidate shouting, you don`t see me anymore, ripping open her blouse in front of campaign staffers. And I will talk exclusively with the reporter who provided that key tip that busted open this entire scandal.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Those who knew William Clyde Gibson say he got into trouble with the kid, but they thought things changed. Then the last two weeks, the prosecutor charged him with two counts of murder, one for killing long-time friend, Christine Whiteus (ph) and then for killing Karen Hodella (ph) fen years ago.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was foot patrol in 1991 at a shopping area near Louisville, Kentucky, when he heard a young woman screams and ran to help. William Clyde Gibson assaulting the young woman.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They derive some intrinsic thrill for killing people, almost like a God complex, that they have the ability to kill somebody and watch them die. It appears that with their DNA with this, maybe a serial killer.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, buried secrets in the backyard of an accused murder, have the people in Indiana and indeed the whole country asking is he a serial killer. And now cops are wondering could the arrest of this registered sex offender, William Clyde Gibson, lead to information about that beautiful missing Indiana University college student?

A 20-year-old fashion merchandising student, Lauren Spierer vanished last June after partying at a Bloomington, Indiana, sports bar with friends. She was last seen walking barefoot and alone toward her Bloomington apartment, police revealed, and released this surveillance photo of Lauren taken the night she vanished. Take a good look at it. But what happened after this photo was snapped is a mystery.

And then, speaking of mysteries, there was this mysterious white truck. Lauren`s mother lashed out at the friends Lauren was with that night saying they should have helped police more.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHARLENE SPIERER, MOTHER OF LAUREN SPIERER: I am extremely disappointed by the fact that only one of Lauren`s friends has called the police department, the Bloomington police department, with any information.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: These poor parents.

And now we have a potential break in that disappearance, the arrest of this William Clyde Gibson, which took place about two hospital hours -- only two hours, stay is even a shorter drive than that, from where Lauren disappeared. Gibson has already been charged with the murders of two women and he may be charged with a third murder after the body of 35-year-old Stephanie Kirk was found buried in his backyard. The victim`s friend doesn`t understand why that charge hasn`t happened already.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You find a dead body in your backyard and not be charged with it? Well --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, good point.

Right now, police are exploring any possible connection between Gibson and Lauren Spierer. Could Lauren`s family get answers? We certainly hope so.

Straight out to HLN law enforcement analyst, Mike Brooks.

Mike, how might this potential serial killer case, somewhere between an hour and two hour drive away connect to missing Lauren Spierer?

MIKE BROOKS, HLN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, that is the question now. They don`t know. But the Bloomington police, they have assigned an investigate gear over to New Albany and say, hey what do we know about any evidence you may have and see if there is any similarities between the disappearance of Lauren and this guy, Mr. William Clyde Gibson. What he has been doing the last ten years? Has he ever been to Bloomington?

These are all questions that law enforcement wants to know because, Jane, law enforcement and Bloomington, they have looked at a couple dozen different cases within a couple hundred miles with no connection. But, could be this be the break they are looking for? As an investigator, you can`t overlook it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now. One look at this guy, this alleged monster, William Clyde Gibson and his mug shot, well, you know, avenues mess, he put up a fight when he was arrested. Take a look at his bloody face. In fact, cop had to wrestler Gibson to the ground when he was pulled over and arrested just a few days ago.

And here`s how the case broke owe. Gibson was actually stopped for drunk driving, not murder. He happened, however, to be driving a car belonging to one of his alleged victims, 75-year-old Christine Whitius (hp), and we are going to show you her photo in a second.

Take a look that the struggle with this guy. Whitius was found, she is the older lady found strangled inside Gibson`s house on April 19th. The woman on the right, Karen Hodella (ph), who vanished 2003 and discovered in the Ohio river, she had been strangled. So, there is a pattern, strangulation.

Gibson is a registered sex offender. He served seven years in prison on a 12-year sentence for sexual abuse, robbery and assault back in 1991 and he has been in and out of jail ever since.

So Wendy Murphy, former prosecutor, first of all, the pattern here, and even the crime that he served time for was grabbing a woman around the neck, that a cop who found him grabbing a woman around the neck as far back as 1990s, OK?

So I see a pattern here and of course, I wonder where the heck was his parole or -- parole officer during this time? Why is this guy roaming free to terrorize women?

WENDY MURPHY, LAW PROSECUTOR, NEW ENGLAND LOW BOSTON: Yes. Well, that`s a good question too. You know, if you look into dictionary under creepy, rapist killer-type, I think his face would be there. But you can`t lock him up because he looks like a guilty monster, nor can you lock him up if he has a pattern, if you can`t connect that pattern to this current missing woman, so --.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. But I guess you can lock him up if you find a 35-year-old-year-old woman`s body in his backyard.

MURPHY: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And she vanished going to a bar and then you have a 75-year-old family friend who he allegedly strangled and she was found in his house, I believe. .

MURPHY: Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Go ahead.

MURPHY: What I`m saying is, if the question is does he have an interest in raping women and killing women, the answer is yes. Should you ask the right question --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Allegedly.

MURPHY: Yes. Is there - allegedly -- is there a reason to believe he would have engaged his pattern of active that far away from his home? You know, not from what I can tell, but look, here is what I would do with the guy. He is facing two murder charges, only has one disgusting life to give, right? I would say to this guy, this family has been through hell, they need to know what happened to their beautiful daughter. Please, just tell us what happened, if you were involved, just tell us the truth and we wouldn`t push the charges, as long as you get hooked on these other two cases, we won`t push the charges. They have a right to know this is torture for this poor family.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I have done this story numerous times. And these poor, poor parents are living a life of hell. It is a nightmare day in and day out not to know what your precious, beautiful daughter -- what became of her.

The three women who were found dead and the missing persons` case, this beautiful Indiana University student, Lauren Spierer, they are all happening in the same general area this is kind of complicated, but stay with me, OK?

Lauren went to Indiana University, which is in Bloomington, which is about an hour, and say two hour drive from New Albany, Indiana. Now, the two dead women were found in Gibson`s home, which is in New Albany. The remains of a third woman were found in a nearby river, the Ohio river, and again, that`s near this New Albany.

So, this is all happening in the same general vicinity. Now, let`s listen to the father of the woman who was found buried in this suspect`s backyard. Buried.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TONY KIRX, FATHER OF STEPHANIE KIRX: She got in the wrong place at the wrong time, I believe. And got in a situation the she couldn`t - she is a good talker. She could talk away out of a lot of things, but I think she just in the situation where she couldn`t get it out.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, now. Stephanie Kirk reportedly disappeared walking to a local bar. It seems, Mike Brooks, you have studied this case. Bars are the commonality, young women and bars.

BROOKS: Does seem that way, Jane. I want to know what he has been doing over that time frame, you know from the last time he murdered -- allegedly murdered someone until now. This guy have a cell phone, this guy have a computer? Well, I don`t know about the compute but most likely has a cell phone. What does this show of his activity and his travels?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes.

BROOKS: And that`s what they are going to be looking into. They are going to be talking to people who know him, OK where did he have to travel? Did he go anywhere for work? Did he go -- did he go an hour and a half, two hours, to Bloomington, Indiana? Has he ever been in that area?

These are all questions I`m sure they are working on now. That is why Bloomington has an investigator going down to New Albany to see if they can connect the dots.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And briefly Joe Gomez, we want to know whether he ever drove a white truck which was near where Lauren disappeared.

JOE GOMEZ, SENIOR INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER, KTRH NEWS RADIO: That was a good question, Jane. I think police are, you know, investigating every possible wit this guy. Look at his rap sheet, for goodness sakes, the fact they unearth a body in his backyard and then a 75-year-old woman`s body, a family friend, Jane, a family friend in his home. I mean, my goodness, and then he was arrested for drunken driving. He has probably certainly been active, if he is indeed guilty of these heinous crimes, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Thank you, fantastic panel.

You have probably been wondering with about that secret service scandal. Wow! What did those Colombian prostitutes look like? We are going to see and hear from the woman at the center of the scandal on the other side. She speaks.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The prostitute at the center of the secret service sex scandal speaking out for the first time. She is providing new details about the morning she got into an argument with one of the agents sent to Colombia ahead of President Obama`s visit.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She said, baby, cash money, cash money? He said, OK, kwanto, in Spanish that is how much? She said $800 in Spanish, but he repeated back to her in Spanish, $800.

DANIA SUAREZ, ESCORT IN SECRET SERVICE SCANDAL (through translator): And then we left and went to this place to buy condoms and then we went to the hotel.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He threw her out of the room and he called her I guess the b-word, for lack of a better way to put it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The prostitute at the epicenter of the secret service sex scandal finally speaks out and says if she was a terrorist, she could have gotten all kinds of top secret information from these drunk secret service agents.

This woman, Dania Suarez, says she is the escort who caused a scene at the Colombian hotel when an agent refused to pay her $800 for services rendered, i.e., sex. Listen to her describe exactly what happened.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SUAREZ (through translator): And I told him to wake up and to give me my gift that I asked him for and he says no. Just go -- just go (bleep). I`m not going to pay you. And then he -- he just -- he put out 50,000 pesos for the taxi and I was like -- I was in shock in that moment when he said that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: She happened to run into a police officer and the rest is history. The international scandal started when 19 agents were supposed to be preparing for the president`s arrival, but instead spent the night allegedly boozing it up and partying it up in a nightclub before taking, well, take a look at it.

Twenty one prostitutes back to the hotel. Dania said the agents were quote, "buying alcohol like it was water," and vodka, apparently, was their drink of choice. Even worse, she says if she wanted to steal top secret information, it would have been easy as taking candy from a baby.

Straight out to former prosecutor Wendy Murphy. If these agents were being as careless as this woman suggests, I think this whole idea of nothing to see here, yes, bad boys, but oh, they didn`t really threaten our national security is a crock.

MURPHY: Yes. When you`re drunk, the pillow talks come a-gushing. And I think that`s the scariest part of this. You know, it`s so easy to say boys will be boys and, you know, this is normal in that culture. This is how women get their money when they are unpaid. They call the cops who help the women and everybody is all about these Americans who exploit these poor women.

You know, I do think that is part of the story we should be talking about, but fundamentally, these guys are pretty high-level guys and what they are doing in terms of the president`s security matters. You`re supposed to be secret.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No let me tell you something. You may not be in favor of prostitute, but it was legal. She wasn`t even breaking the law. It was a zone that allowed t and let me say this she is not -- well, apparently she has a child, but my concern is the moral -- my moral indignation is directed at the men. The men who are married, the men who are sworn to protect and serve and who get rip-roaring drunk.

I say that as a recovering alcoholic. I mean, this is reckless, reckless behavior that could have put the president and this top secret information potentially at risk.

Listen to her talk about that specifically.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SUAREZ (through translator): Of course, at that moment, if I had been a member of one of those terrorist gangs, it is obvious that I would have been able to get everything. Just like the newspapers say, I put them in checkmate. They`re bunch of fools. They are responsible for Obama`s security and they still threat happen. I told them, I`m going to call police so that they would pay me my money. They didn`t care. They didn`t see the magnitude of the problem. Even when being responsible for Obama`s security. I could have done a thousand other things.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Vinnie Parco, private investigator, you are a private eye. You know how important it is if you`re going and doing anything that involves surreptitious activity or you got somebody that could potentially hurt you to stay alert.

VINCENT PARCO, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: Well, first of all, they have codes, they have passwords, they probably left it in the hotel room. These girls do have got a-hold of the code. They have a code word for the president. When security for him, they`ve special code word and they change it all the time that could have been left in view for these people. They could have put a bug in the room. There`s so many thing those have done that could have jeopardized the safety of the president of the United States r.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It is unbelievable. And I just find that these whole boys will be boys` attitude that has been expressed by some people, I find it disturbing. Frankly, the alcoholism upsets me because when you are drinking that much vodka, she says anything next to the truth when you`re drinking vodka like water, to me, and I say that as a recovering alcoholic that is a sign of alcoholic behavior which could be another problem here.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: More secret service sex in a second, but first, your viral video of the week.

(VIDEO CLIP PLAYING)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SUAREZ (through translator): Two more agents stood up at the door and asked me what was going on. I told them. I kept telling them I was going to call more police, more police so that my problem would get solve and they didn`t care. All they were saying was please, please, no police, no police. They were asking me not to call the police.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Joe Gomez, the lack of discretion here, they don`t want her to call police, but she spent hours, according to her, from 6:00 a.m. to at least 10:00 a.m., trying to get the money and he wouldn`t even answer the door once he got her at the door.

GOMEZ: Yes, absolutely, Jane. This all sounds like bad comedy. Apparently, you know, she asked the guy, the guy wanted sex, she said, yes, OK it is going to be $800, cash, baby. I mean, who -- and then he apparently kicks her out in the morning and pretends he doesn`t know what she is talking about, if she can be believed. And hotel security gets involved and then the police get involved, too. This thing just blew up.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but it didn`t have to be that way. I mean, it terms of bad judgment, yes, bad judgment, drinking, bad judgment concerting with prostitutes. But then, even worse judgment, refusing to pay the prostitute for two -- for four hours until the police get involved.

Now, I`m talking about mentality, at one point this woman says, an agent pulled what you might call a situation from the "Jersey Shore" and quote, "lifted his shirt to show off his six-pack." you might want to watch this from mTV to get a visual picture. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, you have to show her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right. All right. Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody loves me, babies, dogs, you know, hot girls, cougars.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Vinnie Parco, private eye, it is as if these agents are acting like members of "the jersey shore."

PARCO: Yes I guess so but yes, they acted that way. But, you know, could have went to another hotel and that would have avoided al this lack of security and a breach of security. And again, they jeopardized the president of the United States.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, Wendy Murphy, you feel that there is blame to go all around, but it`s like when people are cheating. If a married guy is cheating with a woman, I don`t blame the woman, I blame the guy who took the vow in front of, whatever, a minister, a justice of the peace, that`s the person I blame because he is the one who took the vow, not her.

MURPHY: Yes. I don`t know, why you think I`m blaming the women. I don`t at all. I think they have great chutzpah to get the cops and actually confront these guys. They knew what they are dealing with. It was going to be, you know, pretty serious situation. These guys were so arrogant and these women were so, in a sense, you know, proud or angry that they were being disrespected. I like what they did. Don`t get me wrong.

But, here`s why people acted like boys will be boys and it`s no big deal. Our own president made a joke about it at the White House Correspondents Dinner. This is never going to be seen as more than boys will be boys if all the boys in power make jokes about it. That`s the problem.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let me tell you. The fallout from the scandal is serious. It`s not a joke. Arthur Huntington, 41-years-old, currently inactive, meaning a secret service has kicked them out their club. Now, his house is for sale. He is purportedly, allegedly, the guy involved in this whole thing with this woman. His wife is standing up for him. Even though obviously she has got to have read the papers and know what has happened, a crisis in their family. There`s the house, an all-American house, and we never know what goes on behind closed doors, except we do, kind of, because we are in a world where you can`t keep secrets anymore.

So, everybody needs to think about that, especially people protect the president.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are following John Edwards` fight to stay out of prison.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: An emotional day for Edwards` oldest daughter, Kate. She left the courtroom in tears after hearing about a fight between her parents over her father`s affair.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He said, "Kate, Kate, Kate," three times, which she ran out of the room. She did not want to hear the sordid story that was about to be told about her mother.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mrs. Edwards became so distraught following a "National Enquirer" story about the affair that she started tearing off her clothes in front of John Edwards.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She tore open her blouse, threw it off, threw off her bra on the tarmac in front of this gaggle of people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST: John Edwards` sexual secrets and his wife`s Elizabeth, frantic, naked meltdown. Shocking new details fully out in court and I will be speaking with the journalist who helped break this entire story of the presidential candidate`s torrid affair.

John Edwards on trial for allegedly using campaign fund to hide his affair. Testimony this week -- just too much for his daughter, Kate, to handle; she actually fled the courtroom in tears as her dad called after her, "Kate, Kate, Kate," but John Edwards couldn`t chase after her because he is on trial. So the disgraced dad simply hung his head in shame.

Here is what caused Kate to run, testimony about her mom, the late Elizabeth Edwards, who learned about the affair and then ripped her clothes off in fury. Diane Dimond was in court. Listen to her explain it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DIANE DIMOND, SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, "NEWSWEEK": Elizabeth Edwards was very upset and she said something like you just don`t see me anymore, whereupon she tore open her blouse, threw it off, threw off her bra on the tarmac in front of this gaggle of people, as if to command her husband`s attention.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: This meltdown followed published reports in the "National Enquirer" about Edwards` affair with this woman, Rielle Hunter.

With me tonight, the reporter who helped break this story, Rick Egusquiza -- Rick, thank you so much for being here. You are senior reporter, "National Enquirer" and you played a very significant role in breaking this case wide open. Tell us your side, like what happened to you what you found? What you did that caused this essential national scandal.

RICK EGUSQUIZA, SENIOR REPORTER, "NATIONAL ENQUIRER": Well, Jane, thank you for having me.

Well, it all began in 2006 when Rielle Hunter and John Edwards started an affair. I got the initial tip, I received the call at our newsroom and that was in September 2007 and that was a source that was telling about e- mails, phone conversations between Rielle Hunter and a friend that was -- she pretty much admitted the affair and she was in love with John -- married, father, with children. She didn`t say he was a politician at that point, but we published our first story without naming Rielle soon after that in 2007.

And that story -- after that story came out, it snowballed, and you know, I think everybody knows the rest. We caught -- we caught her grocery shopping, hiding out in North Carolina, pregnant, then the baby was born in 2008 in July. Then they met up at the Beverly Hilton Hotel with the baby, John Edwards and we busted them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me jump in there, Rick, because I want to tell our viewers about that crucial turning point in this story and it came when John Edwards went to see his love child with Rielle Hunter.

And it was four years ago, 9:45 p.m. at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills. Edwards snuck into the hotel and then went up to Rielle`s room. When he got back down, reporters were waiting for him John Edwards was shocked and made a run for it. Rick, tell us about the drama, behind the scenes, because this was when it really broke wide open.

EGUSQUIZA: Yes, this was when he was caught pretty much with his pants down. We had two reporters there at the scene, I was not there unfortunately but we got a tip that she was going to meet him there and we staked the place out. He was in her room for hours, the baby was there as well in a separate room, but hew get to hang out with Baby Quinn at the time.

And when he left the hotel in the middle of the night, our reporters confronted him. He ran into the bathroom downstairs at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, was holding the door shut while one of our reporters kept pulling it open and he was like we reported. He was a deer caught in the headlights.

I mean, that was the beginning of the end. And shortly after that, we on "Night Line", admitted to a one night affair, never admitted that he was the father of the baby yet. And I mean, you know, his -- it just started crumbling, his whole story started crumbling at that point.

And Wendy Murphy former prosecutor, law professor at New England Law Boston this is important because this man aspired to the highest office in the land, and yet it was the "National Enquirer" and my buddy Rick who broke this story. This is a story that wasn`t broken by any of the so- called elite newspapers or magazines. And yet it is a very important story.

This -- we want somebody in good character in the White House. Not a liar and a cheat.

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Look it, shame on the mainstream media because they could have done so much more. This is not the first time the "Enquirer" was first on a big story. They were really good at OJ. I mean they were quoted in New York Times, in some of the major stories of our day. I think we know that they get first -- they get there first on a lot of stories, so, shame on the media.

I will say, you know, I think some of this is not particularly relevant. I mean, I`m not sure why we had to hear that about Elizabeth Edwards. It just made me cry inside for her, for her family, why did we have to hear that? I realize it is salacious, it is probably a little bit relevant, but I don`t get why we are not focusing on the campaign finance violation, because that`s the focus, that`s the point and that goes to his character as much as who he is boffing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I think the reason we focus in on it is that it`s sexy and it also tugs at the heartstrings of the jurors.

You can`t help but feel sorry for Elizabeth Edwards. This is a woman who is now deceased, struggled with cancer, raised his children, had children by him, and to be humiliated in this fashion, of course they are going to go for that because they know that, my gosh, these jurors are human beings. And that is the pathos of this whole case.

Rick, I mean you were there, you saw this whole case unfold. This -- Elizabeth Edwards was struggling with cancer.

EGUSQUIZA: Yes, I mean, of course the -- everyone`s picking up all the dramatic stuff in this trial but you can`t get any better than this I mean no one could write this stuff. I mean that`s why I think the mainstream media kind of ignored it. No one believed it because it was so sensational.

I mean it is like a Spanish novella. I mean this stuff is nuts and people are riveted by what is going on in the trial.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you. Do you really feel like a lot of people just didn`t think it was possible that a man running for the presidency would have a secret affair while his wife is suffering cancer, impregnate his mistress, and then just to put the icing on the cake, make a sex tape with her?

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I got to throw it back to Rick. I mean, this is -- what was your reaction as a journalist and as a person, as you were hearing all this?

EGUSQUIZA: Yes. It is a bizarre cover-up and John Edwards engineered the entire thing and he got his best friend, his aide, to pretend that he was the father and that -- and Andrew Young, married to Sherry Young with children, we knew it was just going to all blow wide open and eventually, it did.

I mean it`s just bizarre. The whole thing is bizarre.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But, but Rick, I got to ask you this. As human being, when you`re digging this stuff up, and you`re hearing this stuff, what was your reaction, for example, when you hear about the sex tape?

EGUSQUIZA: Well, my mouth dropped. When we got news of the sex tape, we thought this can`t be true but we did some more digging and we -- we uncovered that it was hidden in a box, that we have all learned since then. And John Edwards and -- she was pregnant at the time. I mean, the guy just was not thinking. I mean, the guy`s ego has to be out of this world

I mean, for him to think that he wasn`t going to get busted, why make a sex tape? Why not destroy the sex tape as soon as you make it? Maybe you keep it yourself. But I mean this stuff is just unbelievable. I mean, it still seems crazy to this day but my mouth dropped every time I got new information on this case.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. We have got callers lining up here. Melissa, North Carolina, your question or thought, Melissa.

MELISSA, NORTH CAROLINA (via telephone): My -- my absolute thought is thank you so much to the "National Enquirer" for breaking this story because this guy could have been president. He could have been the next JFK, frankly, and how much he slummed down from Elizabeth Edwards.

Here is this beautiful, bright, intelligent person and then you look at Rielle Hunter and you never see a beautiful picture of her. She is not a supermodel. I mean when you hear her speak it is not -- it is not eloquent. It is not educated. It`s -- it truly is just -- John has slummed down. And I find that true with a lot of men who cheat on their wives.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, in a way, I agree, Melissa. It is almost like he was looking for someone who would idolize him and idealize him; and Elizabeth Edwards was his equal in every sense -- now if not his superior.

One of John Edwards` aides testified about a strange encounter he had with mistress, Rielle Hunter at a hotel. Listen to Diane Dimond who heard this in court because this is fascinating.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DIMOND: She knocked on the door and came in and said, "Look, I want you to know John Edwards and I love each other very, very much. We are having an affair. He is very upset that you saw me here. And so, please don`t tell anybody," was the gist of it. The next day when he saw his boss, John Edwards, Edwards said to him, "This woman is crazy. You have got to keep her away from me."

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So, Joe Gomez, this is about a lack of judgment on the part of John Edwards.

JOE GOMEZ, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER: Yes. It seems to me like Rielle certainly really thought that this was going to go somewhere. I mean don`t know if she thought she was going to be the next first lady or what but I mean my heart goes out to Elizabeth Edwards.

My god that poor woman dying of cancer, losing all she had and then she watched as her family fell apart, too as Edwards was outed with this affair, Jane. It really is just a heartbreaking story.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It is but I`m glad we learned about. Rick, you did a good job, you a service to the country. And full disclosure, you`re a buddy of mine and we go way back and I remember when you said to me cryptically, you`re going to hear something in the news and it is going to be big. And I just forgot about it. But you were right. Ha.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This annual showdown known as the "Whale Wars".

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I look on the killing of whales as murder.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They drag them to shore and then jab metal hooks into their blow holes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In order to save the whales, people have to be willing to risk their lives.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They can kill up to 1,000 - 2,000 whales a year.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As the oceans die, we die.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, a battle by brave men, my personal heroes, to fight mass slaughter on the high seas. You`re about to meet two incredible men who risk their lives, literally, to save the ocean`s gentle giants. The two stars of Animal Planet`s hit series "Whale Wars" join me tonight. They have a brand-new documentary 30 years in the making. It is called "Confessions of an eco-terrorist".

Before we watch a clip, I want to warn you, some of the images are alarming but it is important to bear witness because together, we can change the horrors inflicted on these creatures of the sea.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 30 years ago, the ocean was a lawless place. With no one to protect it, the sea was being plundered, threatening the very balance of life. And to save the planet, it would take an outlaw.

PAUL WATSON, ANIMAL PLANET: Yes, this is Paul Watson, nice to meet you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "Confessions of an Eco-terrorist".

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I am thrilled to welcome one of my heroes, Captain Paul Watson -- right at you, sir -- founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society; and also the film`s director, Peter Jay Brown. Aye, aye is that how they say it? Aye, aye. You are also a Sea Shepherd crew member.

Millions of people have watched both of you on "Whale Wars" and I want to ask you what can America do people watching here. You know, I tell people, have the courage to watch, because there is hope. If one person decides to get involved, this can end. And if millions decide to get involved, we can truly put an end to it.

So what would you tell Americans is the most important thing for them to do, aside from, of course, going to seashepherd.org and joining up?

WATSON: I think is very important that people understand that our survival as a species depends upon the health of our oceans. If the oceans die, we die. We are out there protecting the diversity of life in our oceans. And the oceans are in trouble. And everybody really has a responsibility to do what they can to protect them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well --

PETER JAY BROWN, DOCUMENTARY DIRECTOR: And this film is saying to people that kids should get out there, people should get off their couches and go do something positive. You know if I can do it -- Paul is of course, the professional, I`m a volunteer, others are volunteers. It is up for everyone, up to time for everyone to get out there and do something.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I always say that people talk to each other, I love animals. It is terrible. I think don`t waste your time talking to each other. Go out there and do something.

Sea Shepherd crew has literally come under attack by the whaling industry. Take a look at this dramatic clip from "Confessions of an Eco- terrorist".

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have been attacked. Shot at.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They just fired at us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Put out a may day that we are under attack by the Norwegian Navy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Rammed. And assaulted.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go home (EXPLETIVE DELETED)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Unfortunately, Captain Watson, the slaughter of the seals is still happening, is it not?

WATSON: It is. Commercially it is over, but the Canadian government has been extremely stubborn on this and they are subsidizing it. But what we are finding all over the world is that a lot of these things continue because of massive government subsidies, the killing of the dolphins in Japan, the killing of the seals in Canada, the killing of the whales. In fact, the Japanese took $30 million from the tsunami earthquake defense -- victims` fund in order to fund their whaling activity in Antarctic last year.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I love the title of this, "Confessions of an Eco- terrorist" because so often when people try to fight for animals, they`re called terrorists and they`re denigrated.

Last word Peter.

BROWN: Well, you know, I`m the eco-terrorist, I suppose, but I`m trying to tell people that terrorism is a label put on by the power of the people against you. We are, obviously, if you look at the film, not the terrorists. We are the people out there saving the animals, not killing them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And that will save the world. It helps us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`re coming to a party with me next. But first, a little laugh break.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(LAUGH BREAK)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Recently I went to the Genesis Awards. It`s a great party the Humane Society throws to honor media that does reporting on animal issues -- so many stars.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The animals need somebody to stick up for them and that`s what the Genesis Awards does.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sort of like the Oscars of awesome animal everything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s about the animals.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am so happy to be a part of the Humane Society and here at the Genesis Awards because everyone here has a heart for these beautiful creatures that need our help.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s an amazing event every year and it`s just getting better.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s a huge honor to be here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I`m here at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, for the Genesis Awards. The Genesis Awards run by the Humane Society of the United States to honor filmmakers and TV journalists who do important work on animal issues. And now I`m going to take you behind the velvet rope.

Now this is an extraordinary crowd, and to give you an idea of how important animal rights issues have become, take a look at the extraordinary number of journalists who are here from all over the world. So if you think that animal issues are taking a back seat -- they`re very important. Things are changing fast.

CARRIE ANN INABA, JUDGE, "DANCING WITH THE STARS": All creatures have the right to be treated fairly and with respect and dignity.

Animals have a right, they don`t have a voice. We need to speak out for them.

I`d like to see a shift or attitude. We share this planet with the animals. We are not better than them. We can talk louder. We can do all of this stuff but really they`re equal to us and I think we need to treat them that way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As celebrities we sort of have a responsibility. I do not wear fur of any kind. I don`t advocate fur. Just the killing of animals just to puff up and look beautiful, that doesn`t make any sense. You walk around hooking like a murder.

ANGELA KINSEY, ACTRESS, "THE OFFICE": If you have any kind of platform, then people are going to notice what you do. So with that comes responsibility. Right? And you have to know that everything you do is highlighted. I`m here for you, animals.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I have to say the biggest star I spotted on the Humane Society`s red carpet, from the artist which won best picture. He`s a Jack Russell terrier rescue dog. That`s right, a rescue turned superstar.

He obviously loves the camera. In fact, he totally stole the spotlight. This goes to show you how sophisticated these animals are.

PAULEY PERRETTE, ACTRESS, "NCIS": We just have so many beautiful, amazing dogs, cats, everything who don`t have homes. So I would just -- please don`t go to a breeder. Please come and get one of our amazing -- they`re just waiting for you. They`re waiting to come home with you.

JASON RITTER, ACTOR, "PARENTHOOD": Go take care of one. Bring one into your home and feed it and give it love. It can be one animal at a time.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Foster, foster, foster. If you don`t know what fostering is, check it out. It`s huge. It`s getting more and more popular. I have two foster dogs at home and I encourage everyone out there if you don`t have the finances right now, or you don`t have the time or you maybe don`t think you can have a pet for several years, then contact your local rescues and say, hey, I`d love to foster and they`ll give you a dog and food and a collar and they`ll help you find a home for it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have to understand the lineage of your food, and I really think you need to learn about how your food is raised and produced and expose yourself to it.

COLBIE CAILLAT, SINGER: I`m wearing these vegan shoes that are really cute. See. They`re vegan. They`re by Olson House; and just showing there`s alternatives. These look like leather and suede but no animal has to die for them.

CLORIS LEACHMAN, ACTRESS: Once you realize, it`s really not necessary to look beautiful in furs or to eat meat. You`re really healthier.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thanks for coming to that party with me. You can watch the entire Genesis Awards Saturday, tomorrow, 4:00 p.m. on Animal Planet. What a great event. So important because it shines the light on animal issues.

For example this horrible tragedy in October -- remember Terry Thompson released 56 exotic animals from his Ohio farm from the cages and then he committed suicide. 48 of the animals were gunned down by law enforcement.

Today, five of the animals -- a bear, two leopards and two monkeys were forced to return to that same farm to live in cages because the widow wants them there, these animals who have suffered so much going back to the same cages.

You know, there`s legislation to stop it -- Ohio legislation, a bill that should go through the state assembly, the state house as well as federal legislation being proposed. Call your congress members, call the people in Ohio. We have to speak for the animals because no one else will.

"Nancy Grace" is up next.

END