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Missing Baby`s Mom to Marry Prime Suspect?

Aired September 13, 2012 - 19:00   ET



JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Tonight, a bizarre twist in the mystery of a missing baby girl. Her mom wants to marry the little girl`s father, who just happens to be the cops` main suspect in the child`s disappearance. Why does she want to marry him? And did the suspect write a chilling jailhouse letter that reveals what happened to little Baby Kate?


VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight, a beautiful 4-month-old baby missing more than a year. Now, in an incredible twist, claims that the child`s mother wants to marry the baby`s father, even though cops say he`s the prime suspect in Baby Kate`s disappearance. And now there`s even a letter reportedly detailing what he says happened to the baby girl. Does it implicate him in his daughter`s death? We`ll investigate this hideous mystery.

And who is wrong here? Shocking video appears to show a 77-year-old grandmother dragged from her car by a cop after she refuses to hand over her driver`s license. She claims she was suffering from a medical condition at the time. But did she antagonize the officer? You won`t believe the video. Plus, we`ll hear from a former cop, the woman`s granddaughter and her attorney live tonight. And we`re taking your calls. What do you think?

Then, football star Chad Johnson pleads not guilty after allegedly beating his stunning reality star wife, Evelyn Lozado. Meantime, Chad`s divorce papers just showed up in court. Is he really over her?

ARIEL COURTLAND, MISSING BABY`S MOTHER: I don`t see how she could be OK. But I don`t want to think like that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s just a tiny thing. She could be anywhere.

COURTLAND: I don`t know where she`s at. And as a mom, it`s hard.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sean Phillips drove away with 4-month-old Kate Phillips after arguing with her mother.

COURTLAND: This isn`t the Sean that I know. This isn`t the Sean that anybody knows.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are these the clothes that you last saw her in?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of Phillips` pockets appeared to be stuffed with something.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And Sean (ph) said that it`s her clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He repeatedly asked Phillips where Kate was. One answer stood out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He then referred to Katherine as dead.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The note found in Sean`s jail clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To us that was a confession.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We, the jury, find the defendant guilty.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Guilty of unlawful imprisonment of his daughter, Baby Kate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The mystery about her whereabouts, a mystery Courtland says she cannot solve.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where is Kate now?

COURTLAND: I have no idea.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, the baffling case of a missing 4-month-old baby girl, a precious child, takes an even more disturbing turn. Baby Kate`s mother, Ariel Courtland, wants to marry the girl`s dad even though he`s the main suspect in this little child`s disappearance.

Good evening. I`m Jane Velez-Mitchell, coming to you live.

Sean Phillips is right now serving 10 to 15 years in prison. Cops got him on unlawful imprisonment in the case of his missing infant daughter. Mom Ariel is barred from even visiting Sean in prison, because she`s considered a victim of the crime. Well, now she says she wants to marry him so she can demand to visit him in the hopes of getting some answers about what really happened to her precious baby.

Baby Kate vanished in June of last year following a big argument between the couple. Ariel says she left Sean and Baby Kate in the car while she quickly went inside her house. When Ariel walked back out, the car was gone. she never saw her baby girl again.

Listen to the message she left Sean`s mother later that day.


COURTLAND: Hi, Kim, it`s me. You`re missing all my phone calls. That`s fine. But Sean kidnapped our daughter. He has her somewhere. I don`t know what he`s doing. I want my daughter back. And if he has harmed one single hair on her head, I will kill him. Do you understand, Kim? I want my daughter back. And I want her back now.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now she wants to marry him.

Our affiliate, WOOD, obtained a jailhouse letter believed to be from Sean to Ariel. It says Baby Kate died by accident as he ripped her car seat out of the car without knowing she was there. Hmm. Is that a confession? Can the story be believed? Is the letter legit? Did he really write it? We`ll analyze all that in a moment.

I want to hear your thoughts on this baffling mystery. Call me: 1- 877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.

Straight out to Leon Hendrix, reporter for WOOD-TV. You`ve been covering this case for a year. What do you make of this jailhouse letter? Why do you think it`s legit? And what`s its significance?

LEON HENDRIX, REPORTER, WOOD-TV (via phone): Well, of course, you know there`s no way to really know if it`s legit. But it sounds like the prosecution, the authorities working on the case, do think it`s legit. And that`s how they`re handling it.

But it was quite the surprise to get. All along, Sean Phillips` defense has been pointing the finger at Ariel, saying that she was the last person with the baby. And now this letter seems to be somewhat of a confession that the baby was in the car, that he took the baby away not realizing that she was there. And somehow accidentally killed her. And then just left her somewhere.

That`s another report about the letter. He says he has no idea where she is. That he just kept driving and left her in what he called a peaceful place.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, what`s fascinating about that is that investigators studied his shoes and found mud and even think they can trace it to a particular marshy area. So he may not remember, but maybe his shoes will reveal what happened.

Now, Baby Kate vanished following a very nasty argument between the couple. Sean was in his car, nobody disputes that, parked in Ariel`s driveway with the baby in the car seat. Sean claims he thought Ariel had taken the baby inside. In his jailhouse letter, purported from him to Ariel, Sean claims he got angry as he drove away and then stopped to dump the car seat outside a fast-food restaurant as a way to get back at her.

Quote, "I grabbed it at the top and ripped it out as hard as I could. She was thrown from it. I didn`t know. I`m so sorry." What?

Steve Moore, former FBI agent, you`ve said the letter is going to sink him. Does it make any sense? I mean, how do you pick up a car seat and throw it and not realize a baby is inside?

STEVE MOORE, FORMER FBI AGENT: You can`t. And how do you throw a car seat out of the car when it`s buckled into the car? Their -- his story makes no sense. He couldn`t have unbuckled it without seeing the baby. He couldn`t have thrown the thing out and had the baby come out because they`re made not to open like that.

What`s going to happen is this letter is going to be used. And it`s going to verify certain parts of his story. And they can dismiss others. He`s just pretty much confessed to most of the murder.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Now, they could use that letter against him, potentially. Except maybe he`s told other stories. In fact, he has.

Mom, Ariel Courtland, says Sean initially pressured her to get an abortion. She says they later discussed giving the baby up for adoption. Sean`s attorney grilled Ariel about that on the stand. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You were going to get an application for an abortion online?

COURTLAND: Ask your client. It was his idea.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, I`m asking you.

COURTLAND: I don`t know.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ariel, you texted this to him: "Trying to make the app online."

COURTLAND: I said I don`t know. What do you want me to say? I don`t know is my answer. Move on.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you asked about an application. What`s the application...

COURTLAND: I don`t know.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. That woman now wants to marry the man who`s the prime suspect in the disappearance of her child. Prosecutors introduced a note found in Sean`s jailhouse jumpsuit following his arrest. In it Sean wrote he had given the baby, Kate, to a man who was supposed to hand her over to some adoptive parents.

Now, Joey Jackson, criminal defense attorney, we`ve heard a letter purportedly written by Sean where he says, oh, he accidentally threw the baby out while trying to destroy the car seat in a fit of rage. Now we`re hearing another letter that was found in his pocket, saying he gave the baby to a man who gave it to adoptive parents. How can any of this be used to prosecute him when he`s telling different stories at different times?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes. You know what? It`s interesting, Jane. Because it becomes a question of credibility. The first thing that will happen, of course, is that the defense lawyers will make efforts to keep them out. They`re not sworn statements. They`re not, you know, done with the imprimatur of the court or anything else. However, they are party admission.

So the question is, are they admissible? They probably will be, as ruled by a judge. Then it becomes a question of fact as to whether or not they`re truthful. And when you have someone saying inconsistent things at inconsistent times, it becomes whether or not they lack what we call in law veracity, believability, reliability. And if they`re not reliable, it becomes very problematic.


JACKSON: Yes, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The baby is somewhere.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: The baby was last seen with this man. They can`t find this precious child, who cops fear is likely dead. They only managed to get him on a lesser charge because as they say, no body, no case. But again, if he`s writing different stories at different times, can they prosecute him successfully for murder?

Dr. Brian Russell, you`re a forensic psychologist. What do you think?

DR. BRIAN RUSSELL, FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, Jane, I remember when we talked about this case when it first broke. And I feel the same about it today as I did back then. It sounds to me like a guy who did not want to be a father. He wanted to get rid of this child. The mother wouldn`t go along. And so he got rid of the child.

We`ve got implausible stories during, after. It`s shades of Casey Anthony, in a way, because even if you accidentally threw your child across a convenience store parking lot, you would immediately call 911 and say, "Oh, my God, I accidentally hurt my child. Please come see if you can save the child."

But we don`t have that. We have concealment of the body. We have telling of stories afterwards to cover up everything. I feel just exactly the same as I did when you and I discussed this like a year ago.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: On the other side, callers lining up. And we`ll tell you why there`s a parallel to the disappearance of Haleigh Cummings. Remember Misty and Ron?



JORDAN HARTLEY, MASON COUNTY SHERIFF`S DEPARTMENT: He was wearing a T-shirt. I could see the muscle on the right bicep was twitching, involuntarily twitching. Very nervous. His stance was a boxer stance. He was clenching his fist.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: And that`s law enforcement describing the father of this little baby. His name is Sean Phillips. He`s currently doing some hard time on this disappearance, but they can`t get him on murder, because there is no body of this child.

He claims -- in this letter, purportedly claims that, oh, he didn`t realize that the child was in the car seat, and he in the fit of rage, threw the car seat and the child died. But none of it seems to really make a lot of sense.

We`re going out to the phone lines to try to figure this case out. Rachael, Indiana, your question or thought, Rachael.

CALLER: Yes, Jane. I wanted to know if there`s been any history of mental or physical abuse toward this woman by her husband to make her act the way she`s doing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Leon Hendrix, what`s the back story on this couple? He`s obviously got problems. Does he have a rap sheet, a history of psychiatric illness? And what about her?

HENDRIX: This is a classic story of high school sweethearts. This couple has been together on again/off again for years since Ariel, the mother, was in her mid-teens.

And what is sad is that she was -- she was, and some still say she is, madly in love with Sean Phillips. And he was trying to pull away from it. They already have one child together. And it was said when she got pregnant with the second child, he really didn`t want that child to be his and was avoiding having the paternity test. And didn`t want to be a part of that. Wanted not to connect with that child. And she was always trying to cling back toward him. That`s how the story goes.

As far as a rap sheet, neither one of them have very serious criminal pasts. In fact, Sean Phillips was in the military before all this.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Leon, what you`ve described is incredible dysfunction. Somebody who wants to have a relationship and apparently doesn`t use the protection that wouldn`t result in a child, but then, "Oh, I don`t want to know if it`s mine." And now the child is missing and presumed dead. And look at this angelic face, relying on adults to protect her.

Ariel, the mother, told a local reporter that she wants to marry Sean. Here`s her stated excuse, so she can go and visit him in prison and get some real answers about what happened to their baby.

Now, Sean, what`s his motive for possibly wanting to marry? Well, in the jailhouse letter he said -- and it`s believed to be from him. He wrote it to Ariel. And he said, "Things spouses tell each other in confidence can`t be made to testify. But we aren`t married yet in the eyes of the government."

So under Michigan law, that spousal privilege is what he appears to be referring to. Guess what? It can`t be used in a criminal case where a child has been harmed.

But, Joey Jackson, it sounds like he may not know the law. So maybe he`s trying to marry her so that she can`t testify against him in a more serious case if it comes up. And that`s not going to work.

JACKSON: Jane, interestingly enough, no, it will not work. Because as you so clearly state and so rightfully state, the marital privilege, which of course, protects communications between husband and spouse and pillow talk, can`t be used in the event that he tells her something incriminating because of the exception where it relates to children and children potentially being hurt. Anything he says to her, it`s fair game.

And so he needs, certainly, to be briefed on the law before he goes and tells her further issues. Although it might be nice if he does, because then, of course, we can get to the bottom of where this child is, did he kill the child, where is the body, et cetera, et cetera, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: None of it makes sense. If this letter is from him and he says, "Well, I threw the child out in a fit of rage, not realizing she was in the car seat," well, then, how does he not know what he did with the child? And his boots are muddy. And they`re trying to find out exactly what marsh his boots were in.

On the other side, parallels to the Haleigh Cumming case and more calls.



APRIL LANGE, MISSING BABY`S GRANDMOTHER: Sean doesn`t do anything that he doesn`t want to. You know, Ariel would see him and talk to him every day if she could, to beg where Kate`s at. But I do know they have met twice. And he has not said anything about where she`s at.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: That is the grandmother of the missing baby talking about the baby`s father who wrote purportedly in a letter, "I wasn`t dumping a body. It wasn`t like that at all. I want her buried, too. I don`t know where she was left."

You know, it doesn`t really make sense. If he is saying that he was the one who hurt her and essentially killed her, if that`s his letter, then he would know where he put her.

Now, meanwhile the mother of this child wants to marry Sean claiming, "Well, that`s how I can demand to see him in prison and get answers from him."

We`ve seen this before. You remember when 5-year-old Haleigh Cummings vanished from her family`s trailer a few years ago. The precious little girl hasn`t been found. She`s presumed dead. In an eerie parallel, Haleigh`s father, Ron, married then-girlfriend Misty Croslin, who was the last person to see Haleigh alive. Some speculated it was an attempt to avoid have to testify against each other.

But Ron said, "I want to get close, and I want to stay close to Misty so I can find the truth." Is it a realistic way? They`ve since gotten divorced, and they`re both in jail for a long time on drug charges.

Let`s go out to the phone lines. Shannon, North Dakota, your question on this case of this missing Baby Kate.

CALLER: Yes, thanks for taking my call from North Dakota. North Dakota loves you. My theory is, I think the baby was already dead. And he went and disposed of the baby.

And they were supposed to do a DNA test. Why would you want to go back upstairs to get a stroller when you got a car seat to carry the baby in the car seat to go into the hospital to take a DNA test? You wouldn`t need a stroller for that. And did they do any DNA test on the clothing to see if there was any decomposition matter on the clothes at all?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Steve Moore, former FBI agent, they haven`t been able to find the body and therefore, the clothes that the child was wearing when she vanished. But what about that idea that this is all fiction and that something happened in the house before the baby was put in the car or maybe the baby was never put in the car seat?

MOORE: Well, you can`t discount that. But what you can do is look at his story step by step by step. If he says something that`s very specific and you can verify it, that`s very helpful. If he says, "Then I left the child with a unicorn and it flew away," then you know he`s back off into the -- into the craziness.

But what -- what you can do is use different parts of the story and find out -- liars like that tend to try and keep it as close to truth as possible. So I think he`s -- I think he`s finished right now.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think polygraph him and find out where he`s lying. And then do the math, follow the mud on his shoes and find this precious child. She deserves justice.

And now our shocking video of the day. A crash and grab at an Apple store in California. The 22-year-old BMW driver is in jail after causing about $600,000 in damage. You see his buddies grabbing every iPhone and iPad they can.

Cops had an easy time tracking the driver down because of his license plate. It fell off and was left inside the store. What idiots. What idiots that you think you can go into an Apple store and get away?

By the way, I tried to go to the bank today. Here in midtown Manhattan. And I couldn`t get in because they just said there had been a robbery. Is it something in the water? I`m serious.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The traffic stop on August 19 on Highway 67 near spur 102 started like most.

SGT. GENE GEHEB, KEENE POLICE: Hello. Sergeant Geheb, Keene Police Department.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sergeant Gene Geheb pulls over 77-year-old Lynn Bedford. The officer`s dash and chest cam are rolling.

LYNN BEDFORD, PULLED OVER BY OFFICER: All right. Let`s hurry up. I`ve got to go to the bathroom. I`ve got -- I have a bladder infection...

GEHEB: Let me see your driver`s license and insurance, please.

BEDFORD: I have a bladder infection. Will you listen to me?

GEHEB: No. I want to see your driver`s license and insurance, please. Then I`ll listen to you.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. But it`s what happens next that will surprise you.

Tonight, a Texas grandmother is recovering from a nightmare traffic stop that she says left her bruised and battered. But there`s definitely two sides to this story.

Seventy-seven-year-old Lynn Bedford was driving home from church when she was pulled over for allegedly speeding. The officer repeatedly asked her for I.D. Bedford would not comply, saying she was in urgent need of a restroom. So here`s what happened next.


GEHEB: Step out of the vehicle. Get out of the vehicle. Get out of the vehicle.

BEDFORD: You are hurting me.

GEHEB: Get out of the vehicle.

BEDFORD: I`m going to report you`re hurting me.

GEHEB: OK. Step out of the vehicle.

BEDFORD: You`re twisting my arm.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: The Keene Police Department and the city is standing behind this officer, saying he did nothing wrong and followed department policy. Even though he ended up forcibly removing the grandmother from her SUV. Watch.



GEHEB: You`re under arrest.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Bedford`s attorney, Clay Graham, says the officer went too far.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She`s very disappointed to learn that instead of being protected to serve, she was basically being antagonized and assaulted.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lynn Bedford`s attorney sends us these photos of injuries she says occurred during the traffic stop when the officer yanked her to the ground.

So who do you think is at fault here? Did the officer overreact? Or did the grandmother pick a fight by refusing his simple request?

We`re leaving -- we`re just playing it, putting it all out there. We want to get everybody`s response. Give me a call: 1-877-586-7297, 1-877- JVM-SAYS.

Straight out to Lynn Bedford`s granddaughter, Aubrey, who is defending her grandmother`s actions; Aubrey, you saw the video. You saw it all play out. What was your reaction? And why were you upset for your grandmother?

AUBREY MCQUE, LYNN BEDFORDS GRANDDAUGHTER: Honestly, when I first saw it, there are no words to describe how horrible that is -- just watching it just happen to anybody. 19 seconds is all he allowed her from the first initial time that he asked for her driver`s license to when he first laid hands on her. I have not been able to pull out my driver`s license from my wallet in my purse in my car in 19 seconds.

So that just tells you the amount of patience that this officer had with an elderly woman that`s 77 years old that had an urgent need -- a medical need, she had a urinary tract infection, she needed to go to the bathroom. And she was trying to explain to the officer what was going on. And he just didn`t want to listen.

And he escalated matters by doing what he did. He controlled the situation and made it escalate.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, that`s why we asked you here. We want to get all sides of this story. There has been a lot of debate over who`s at fault here. Let`s watch how this encounter between the officer and the 77- year-old driver went downhill fast.


BEDFORD: All right. Let`s hurry up. I`ve got to go to the bathroom.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let me see your driver`s license and insurance please.

BEDFORD: I have a bladder infection.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can I see a driver`s license and insurance please.

BEDFORD: Will you listen to me?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. I want to see your driver`s license and insurance please. Then I`ll listen to you.

BEDFORD: Why? Why are you going to wait?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let me see your driver`s license.

BEDFORD: I`ll give it to you in a minute.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. Give it to me now or I`m going to take you to jail.

BEDFORD: Well, go ahead.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, former police chief and private investigator, Tom Shamshak, take a look at this poll. We put up a poll on asking who`s at fault. It`s split almost 50/50 -- almost evenly divided.

As a former police chief, do you think the officer did anything wrong?

TOM SHAMSHAK, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: Jane, good evening. As a former police chief and a current police practices expert who`s testified in a variety of police malpractice cases in state court and in federal court, I`ve looked at this. I do not see anything wrong with the officer`s behavior. His actions are consistent with good and accepted police procedure.

Listen, this woman could have just quickly given him the documents. And she could have gone on her way up the road rather than taking a ride in the back of a police car to the pokey. When she said to him, "Go ahead and arrest me," that`s what he did. I didn`t see any kind of violence there.

And what this raises in my mind -- this is what I take away from this, is this woman fit to have a license. 60 miles over, she was speeding. And with this kind of behavior, I think that`s a serious question that has to be raised -- Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Now we`ve got both sides. Now, let`s continue with the video. When it was all over, Lynn Bedford, 77, was cited for speeding and failure to show identification. Take a look at this from WFAA.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you going to be able to drive?

BEDFORD: Well, I`ll tell you what, I`m pretty shaky. I never thought I`d be treated like this.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Now, I want to put up Tom Shamshak and Aubrey McQue, Lynn Bedford`s granddaughter, the 77-year-old woman`s granddaughter. Aubrey, you wanted to respond to what former police chief Tom Shamshak had to say about this.

MCQUE: Well, of course, you know. She would have given her driver`s license and she did say I`ll give it to you in a minute. And she was not afforded that minute. He escalated matters. He started placing his hands on her before he even told her she was under arrest.

And people don`t seem to keep that in mind. You know, she doesn`t deny that she was speeding. And the speed where he clocked her changes from 60 to 50. And so there`s a -- that`s not something that she`s denying at all.

What she is having an issue with and what she wants to do with the public is make sure that this doesn`t happen to somebody else again. She`s an elderly woman. She has osteoporosis, what if he had broken her hip and serious decreased her living capacity? What if this happened to somebody else?

That`s what we want from the public is to help protect them from an incident like this occurring again.


SHAMSHAK: Let me just say that the officer was using reasonable force. His actions were prudent in my humble opinion. And to a reasonable degree of professional certainty based on my training, education and experience, this case will never get beyond summary judgment if it is taken into the civil arena.

I have great empathy for this woman, but unfortunately in my opinion - - and I`ve seen a lot of this stuff -- listen, she said -- when he said, listen, I`m warning you, I`ll arrest you. Go ahead and arrest me. That`s what he did.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let me bring in the attorney for Lynn Bedford. We just heard from her granddaughter, who is very articulate. Clay Graham, attorney for Lynn Bedford -- are you planning on taking legal action? And what about the reaction of the former police chief, Tom Shamshak that essentially she could have precluded all this if she`d simply taken that second to get that ID and give it to him?

CLAY GRAHAM ATTORNEY FOR LYNN BEDFORD: Thanks for having me on. You know we`re exploring our options, our legal options at this point. We don`t know Officer Geheb`s history in Keene or if he`s worked in other jurisdictions and if this has happened before and whether or not the city is aware of it. And the question then being is, are they being indifferent to that.

Now, I think that there is -- for the most he is within the bounds of his official duties, but the point where he drops off is where he puts his hands on her. And if we look at the bigger picture here, your expert, which is one among many, said that all she had to do was simply produce those documents and she could have been on her way.

At the same time the officer`s the one who is in charge and has the qualified immunity and the broad discretion at a scene like this. And he could have done a number of things. He could have stepped back and realized that I`m dealing with an older adult woman who has a valid urgent need that`s related to a medical condition. She probably could have ponied up proof to that and then who knows what he would have done. He could have said, I`m going to give you a warning. Keep it slow. He could have followed her home and issued the citation after that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: For TV we`ve actually devoted a lot of time for this. I`m sorry. If we can bring up our panel, I want to thank you all for having a reasoned and involved debate about this.

Aubrey McQue, I don`t know if you`re studying law, but you could be a great attorney. It`s an interesting discussion. I wonder whether the issue boils down to should a person`s age be factored into consideration in how they`re treated by law enforcement. I don`t have the answer to that.

I really didn`t have an opinion except that it was really interesting video and would be a good conversation. Thank you all for engaging in that conversation. And I certainly hope that your grandmother recuperates very quickly.

On the other side of the break, we`re talking Chad Ochocinco and Evelyn Lozada. You will not believe what`s happening with them now.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s your "Viral Video of the Day. Look at this. You know, animals bring so much joy to the family. They`re hanging out. Who needs a card game when you`ve got Rover here? And it`s great for the kids too. My gosh. Rescue a dog from the pound and have some real fun.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chad Johnson was released from jail after being charged with domestic battery, accused of head butting his reality star and newly wife Evelyn Lozada.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Johnson, you`ve been charged with battery, domestic violence.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She says Chad head butted her. He says she slammed her head into his.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Breaking news. NFL star Chad Johnson throws in the towel of his marriage to reality TV beauty Evelyn Lozada. It`s over -- well almost. Chad just filed a response to her divorce filing. His lawyer tells us he expects to be officially divorced within a week, this as he pleads not guilty to misdemeanor battery for allegedly attacking Evelyn.

Their twisted celebrity love story made headlines when after just one month of marriage Chad allegedly head butted Evelyn during an argument. Cops say she was left with a big gash on her forehead. What was it over? Well, Evelyn reportedly was not too happy about a condom receipt she says she found in his car. He denied attacking her insisting she was the one who head butted him.

Straight to TMZ news manager, Mike Walters, do you think they`ll be head butting in divorce court now?

MIKE WALTERS, TMZ NEWS MANAGER: Well, I mean, he was really hanging onto this marriage. He thought they might get back together. We have a photo on our Web site, actually he got a tattoo of her entire face on his leg right after the arrest. Kind of symbolizing, "Look, I know I did something wrong but I really want to be with you." And he was holding out signing those divorce papers.

But like you said, we got hold of the documents today. He has signed the response. He said, look, I know the marriage is broken. But there is one battle that`s going to go on here. And that is there`s a pre-nup and it`s very clear that each side gets what they brought into the marriage including each of them having to pay their own attorneys fees, which we all know in celebrity court cases can be very expensive.

Well, she wants him to pay her fees. She wants all that money because of what happened. And I think this might get a little nastier in divorce court as we go on, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Yes. You talked about the tattoo. I think we`ve even got that tattoo to show.

He was love sick, his friends said. Now, there were also tweets that he sent out. Divorce, child, please, that`s my wife. Another person asked, "I thought she filed for divorce." And Chad fired back, "I don`t give a flying pretzel in skittle rainbow hell what she filed for." Well, he does have a way with words. Doesn`t he?

Listen I want to go out to Sheryl Lee Ralph, the author of the fabulous book "Redefining Diva: Life lessons from the original dream girl", you actually have a twitter pic with Evelyn Lozada. What do you make of this love story, if it`s a love story?

SHERYL LEE RALPH, AUTHOR, "REDEFINING DIVA": Let me tell you something, Jane. No matter who you are, male or female, divorce is awful. It`s painful. And it hurts. I have met both of them. Both of them come off as charming, charismatic people. But they all -- both have a whole lot of oomph (ph) with themselves. And when that comes together, sometimes it can end up the way we are seeing.

And it`s interesting that we`re talking about this today on the 18th anniversary of the, you know, the act against violence against women. It`s just very, very difficult to have to talk about it because I like both of them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, I mean, they seem like wonderful people separately. But let`s face it.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: When you`ve got basically spitfires on both ends, people with tempers and passion and they collide, it can get ugly. We got a glimpse of what was going on in the Johnson house from clips like this one from VH1. Check it out.


CHAD OCHOCINCO, NFL PLAYER: Being able to commit to one individual over a long period of time is new to me. I`m on the road.


OCHOCINCO: And then what?

LOZADA: I want to know (EXPLETIVE DELETED) go to the pharmacy and get condoms rather than hide it. At the end of the day you don`t have to tell me nothing.

We don`t want to have an open relationship. That`s not what we`re saying. What we`re saying is, you know, respect my (inaudible), I`m going to love you. I don`t know what`s going to happen.

I don`t know if I can be with you for 80 years and not be interested in anybody else.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Family law attorney Vikki Ziegler, is she going to be stung by the fact she signed a pre-nup?

VIKKI ZIEGLER, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY: Absolutely. From what I`ve seen, he`s definitely worth a lot more than she is. So, although it`s just about a 42-day marriage, I don`t know how much she`d actually get. It`s in Florida. It`s not a community property state. But certainly she doesn`t have a chance of getting much.

And if he really did head butt her, which it appears to be potentially that she had that three-inch wound on her forehead, I mean that`s not pretty. And you know what; people, when they`re going through divorce, they want money. Money, blood and everything else. And tattoo remorse is not going to work in this case, Jane.

So, yes, I mean, I think they`re going to probably uphold the prenuptial agreement, make it enforceable. If they`re fighting over legal fees, that`s one thing that may be fought over, but if it`s in the pre-nup that each pay their own fees, she`s going nowhere fast, unfortunately.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. More on the other side.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Time for our "Pets of the Day". Chewy, look at you dive -- Wow. Cupcake and Kiwi show two different species can love each other. River is just stunning. What can I say? And Sadie and Bella, they got a thing going on. Daphne is just comfy and cozy.

Send your pics. We love them.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 911, what is your emergency?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I have somebody here at my house that was in -- in a little domestic dispute with their husband.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ok. Was it physical or verbal?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, she`s got a cut on her forehead. Let`s not make a big scene about it until the police get here. We`re worried that he`s going to get mad and he`s a high-profile person.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s the 911 call when Chad Johnson allegedly head butted Evelyn Lozada. And now they`re headed to divorce court. But Evelyn has shown her own fiery temper on Vh-1`s "Basketball Wives". Check this out.


LOZADA: You`re going to get (EXPLETIVE DELETED). Tell me you said that (EXPLETIVE DELETED).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Like I said before.

LOZADA: No, I won`t do it again. Did you (EXPLETIVE DELETED) or did you not?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Like I said before, I don`t remember.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sheryl Lee Ralph, will demonstrations like that on a reality show, lessen sympathy for Evelyn Lozada.

RALPH: You know, it`s very interesting, when I met Evelyn, I was set up to dislike her based upon those examples of behavior that I had seen repeatedly on the show. But when I met her, she seemed very different from that. She seemed like every other young woman with her securities and her insecurities. But that`s what I saw.

What most of the world and America saw as reality is what you just showed on the screen and that is why I feel she is not getting as much sympathy as we might expect for anybody else in that situation. And also, both sides are innocent until proven guilty, and there`s a lot of he said/she said going on right now.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Sheryl Lee Ralph, have I told you how fabulous it is to have you back -- to have the original dream girl back with us? We haven`t talked since the --

RALPH: Thank you, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- Dr. Conrad Murray case. It`s really great. We want to have you back more and more because you are just fabulous.

RALPH: Thank you, Jane. Thank you very much.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, we love having you. Vikki Ziegler, , what about the fact that he ended up getting fired from the Miami Dolphins because of all this?

ZIEGLER: I mean, this is a nightmare for him. Their reality show got canceled. He`s out of work. He`s a free agent. And he really hasn`t been proven guilty. There`s an allegation, there`s a complaint for misdemeanor battery filed against him, not against Evelyn, against him. Remember, that`s important because it`s a he said/she said battle.

Obviously there was more evidence weighing on the fact that potentially he was the one that head butted her. But yes, it looks like his life is going down the drain quickly, and that`s really unfortunate. But I have to tell you, if this was a battle in divorce court, Exhibit A, that videotape of Evelyn, it would be fantastic to show the court.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sheryl Lee, we`ve got ten seconds. Is there something to learn from all this?

RALPH: Yes. When you have these arguments, one of the greatest things you can learn to do before you get married is communicate with each other. I also love the fact that they had a pre-nup. Negotiate with people while you love them, way before you get into the hell, pain and hurt of divorce.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: One thing I`ve learned when you`re about to have an argument -- leave, take a walk. We`ll be back with more in a second. Thank you both.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: I had a bittersweet moment today looking at the photos of a newly discovered species of monkeys in a remote African forest. This beautiful monkey is extraordinarily human-like -- his eyes, his nose, what looks like his bearded face. Yet I also fear for him and his fellows now they`ve been discovered by humans. I hope people don`t try to steal one for themselves.

Tragically we continue to abduct monkeys from the wild and breed them to be used in laboratories. There`s an ape in Atlanta -- a lab there who reportedly is older than I am and has lived her whole life in a cage, never seeing the light of day. This is why, in my opinion, we Americans must pass the Great Ape Protection Act.

A group of impartial scientists just concluded most chimp research is completely unnecessary. There are better ways to explore things on a molecular and sub-molecular level.

Please, celebrate this new species of monkey by calling your members of Congress. Pass the Great Ape Protection Act. They can`t call for themselves.