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NANCY GRACE

The Menendez Murders

Aired December 31, 2012 - 20:00   ET

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


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

911 OPERATOR: Beverly Hills emergency.

LYLE MENENDEZ, CONVICTED OF MURDERING PARENTS: Yes, please.

911 OPERATOR: What`s the problem? What`s the problem? What`s the problem?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police are looking for a motive tonight in the murders of a prominent show business executive and his wife. They were found just before midnight last night, shot to death in their exclusive Beverly Hills home.

LYLE MENENDEZ: Somebody killed my parents!

911 OPERATOR: Pardon me?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Somebody killed my parents!

911 OPERATOR: What? Who? Are they still there?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: The people...

LYLE MENENDEZ: No, no!

911 OPERATOR: Were they shot?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Private security guards have surrounded the Menendezes`s mansion. They say they are here to protect the couple`s two sons, Erik and Lyle, because, quote, "the killers may come back for the boys."

911 OPERATOR: Were they shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: They were shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: What happened?

LYLE MENENDEZ: (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Menendez, you`ve heard the testimony of your brother that you and he killed your parents on August 20th, 1989, did you not?

ERIK MENENDEZ, CONVICTED OF MURDERING PARENTS: Yes, we did.

911 OPERATOR: Is the person still there? What happened? We have units around. What happened? Who shot who?

LYLE MENENDEZ: (INAUDIBLE) They were here when I came home!

911 OPERATOR: You came home and found who shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and dad!

911 OPERATOR: You`re in bed?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: Do you know if they`re still in the house, the people that did the shooting?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Erik, get away from them!

911 OPERATOR: OK, hang up. Let me talk to Erik. Who was the person that was shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and my dad!

911 OPERATOR: Your mom and dad?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and my dad!

911 OPERATOR: OK. Hold on a second.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lyle said years before, his father warned him...

LYLE MENENDEZ: We should keep it just between us or he`d kill me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

NANCY GRACE, HOST: I remember when I first heard about the Menendez case. You`ve got to think back to August, Beverly Hills, California, one of the, if not the most, elite and most wealthy enclaves in the entire country, Beverly Hills. There in a mansion lived Kitty and Jose Menendez, by all accounts, wonderful parents that loved their sons, Erik and Lyle.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do you believe was the originating cause of you and your brother ultimately winding up shooting your parents?

ERIK MENENDEZ: Me telling.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You telling what?

ERIK MENENDEZ: Me telling Lyle that...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You telling Lyle what? Was it you telling Lyle about something that was happening?

ERIK MENENDEZ: My dad -- my dad...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your honor, can I ask a leading question?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) to ask...

ERIK MENENDEZ: My dad...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One second, Mr. Menendez. Let me ask...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no. He was in the process of answering, so there`s no need to ask it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Can you answer the question?

ERIK MENENDEZ: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. It was you telling Lyle what?

ERIK MENENDEZ: That my dad had been molesting me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: If you can envision the scene, they`re in a mansion in Beverly Hills, California, in the evening. The father, Jose Menendez, was known to be a family man. He and his wife, Kitty, a former beauty queen, were sitting on the sofa, watching TV. They were eating berries before they went to bed and filling out a college application for their youngest son, Erik Menendez.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ERIK MENENDEZ: Yes, she was excited to get Lyle and I off to college and away from the house so that she could take trips with Dad and she wouldn`t have to let -- she didn`t want Dad to go on business trips alone.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How important was this idea in your mind that going to college would end the molestation by your father?

ERIK MENENDEZ: How important was it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. How significant a notion was this?

ERIK MENENDEZ: It was the most important thing in my life. It was everything in my life. It was all I thought about.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jurors must eventually decide if the sons who shot their wealthy parents were motivated by fear or financial gain.

ERIK MENENDEZ: Why was it all I thought about?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

ERIK MENENDEZ: Because it would end the sex. That`s all I thought about.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How did you feel at 18 about the fact that your father was having sex with you?

ERIK MENENDEZ: I hated it. I hated it. I hated it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: It was then that a frantic, a hysterical 911 call was placed to police. And on the phone was the older brother, 21-year-old Lyle, screaming that both of his parents were gunned down in their own home as they watched TV.

Frequently, I think three times, Lyle calls out for his younger brother, Erik. And you can hear Erik in the background crying and screaming about his parents dead, both of them hysterical.

Police get to the scene, and yes, it looks like a mob hit has gone down.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why did you kill your parents?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Because we were afraid.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you have a lot of nice memories from your childhood?

LYLE MENENDEZ: No.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: Both the victims, Jose and Kitty, they`re in their own living room gunned down, multiple gunshot wounds. And we see gunshot wounds to the legs, the thigh, to suggest it was a mob hit, shooting in the kneecaps, so to speak. But there were other gunshot wounds, gunshot wounds point- blank to the head of these victims.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LYLE MENENDEZ: I was afraid, and my dad didn`t want me to.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did he tell you about telling people?

LYLE MENENDEZ: He just said that it was our secret, that bad things would happen to me if I told anybody. And I told him I never would.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you kill them because you wanted to pay them back for the way they had treated you?

LYLE MENENDEZ: No.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why did you kill your parents?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Because we were afraid.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: The father, Jose, was found sitting up like a mannequin, just sitting there, the TV on, the berries there for him to reach, the remote control at his side. But he was sitting on a sofa that was drenched, soaking with blood.

There at his feet -- for just one flash, I imagine my own parents in this scenario. There at Jose`s feet was his wife, Kitty, the former beauty queen. She was curled up in a fetal position. She was riddled with gunshot wounds, and there were a lot of wounds on her arms and hands as if she were cowering from her killer.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: During the time between 6:00 and 8:00, when this was going on, did you tell your brother?

LYLE MENENDEZ: No.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you do something to your brother?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did you do to your brother?

LYLE MENENDEZ: I took him out to the woods whenever I felt -- I don`t know. I took him out sometimes, and I took a toothbrush also and I played with Erik in the same way. And I`m sorry.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In court, defense attorneys presented nude pictures of Lyle Menendez and his brother Erik which were allegedly taken by their father. Lyle Menendez testified for more than two hours about a history of physical, verbal and sexual abuse by his father.

LYLE MENENDEZ: Just in the bedroom, we`d have what we called object sessions, and just slide my pants down or take my pants off. Sometimes it would be for a short period of time, sometimes longer. Lay me on the bed, and he`d have a tube of Vaseline and he just played with me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: After recounting that episode, Menendez broke down in the courtroom.

LYLE MENENDEZ: I just told him that I didn`t want to do this and that it hurt me. And he said he didn`t mean to hurt me and he loved me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: Also there on the coffee table, the college applications for their youngest son, Erik, that they were filling out.

The brothers were almost incoherent, inconsolable, when the police arrived. Here you have a very well-known entertainment executive. In fact, his bonus -- bonus alone that year was close to $1 million. That`s just his bonus alone. Forget about his salary, and this gorgeous woman, both of them in their 40s, in the prime of their life, raising these two beautiful sons, seemingly beautiful. Their names became synonymous with evil, Erik and Lyle Menendez.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Both defendants were permitted in this case to present the essence of their defense, which is that they believed that their parents were going to kill them and that they killed in fear.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It never ends. The lying and outrageous exaggerations in this case by the prosecution and the police absolutely never end.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: Well, Erik and Lyle Menendez were immediately questioned by police just to get background. I`m not sure that they were suspects initially. They told police -- now, they had their stories down -- that they had gone to a movie that evening and that they had gone to a food festival, that they came home to the smell of smoke. I guess they`re talking about gunsmoke. And they were convinced, they told police, that the mob or some cartel had killed their parents.

When police asked them in the days and weeks to follow, Why would the mob or the cartel kill your parents, and they insisted that the father`s business, which was video distribution, quote, "stepped on a lot of toes" - - please. You know, you step on a toe in Hollywood. What? You don`t get your chopped garden salad at the Polo Lounge? And they dragged in the cartels? So right there, I`m sure the cops` antennae were raised.

Many defense attorneys will tell you that there`s no playbook for grief, but you be the judge. Let`s take a look at the behavior, the demeanor of Erik and Lyle Menendez in the days and the weeks following their mother and father`s brutal murders there in their own home.

Let`s just kick it off, within about three or four days following their parents` murders, they go into the jewelry store and buy three Rolex watches, three jeweled Rolex watches. This is within 72, 100 hours of their parents` murders.

It doesn`t end there. They go on to buy a $70,000 Porsche, a Jeep Cherokee, a Saab for one of their girlfriends. One of the brothers goes out and hires the country club tennis coach for $60,000 to be his personal tennis coach.

Let me see. Oh, yes, I forgot the nearly half a million dollars they spent on a chicken wing restaurant in New Jersey. They began the process of buying a $900,000 condominium on a marina.

But they never sprung for headstones for their parents` graves. They would have shopping sprees where they would drop 3,000 bucks in an hour. A Jeep Cherokee, a Porsche, a Saab, a chicken wing restaurant, Rolexes, but not a headstone for your parents` grave?

Fine. You tell a jury it`s OK. It`s not OK to me.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If your mother had been planning to kill you, would she have been filling out your application for UCLA?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Objection, your honor.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: You have the issue of their frame of mind, their course of conduct, their modus operandi. Other witnesses say they never once saw either of the brothers shed a single tear for their mother and father.

Then there was the big break in the case. Have you ever heard the phrase "Loose lips sink ships"? It came from a World War II saying. And truer words were never spoken.

Turns out that Erik Menendez in his youth had committed a couple of break-ins in the Calabassas (ph) area. He was ordered to see a shrink. That shrink, Dr. Oziel. Well, while Erik Menendez was speaking to his shrink, he confesses that he murdered his parents along with his older brother, Lyle.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did any of you, yourself, your brother, or Dr. Oziel, ever mention that your mother was probably or was, in fact, killed because she was a witness?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On the tape, Lyle Menendez indicated that a suicide note of Kitty`s may have ultimately led to her shooting death.

ERIK MENENDEZ: She had given me permission to please carry out her suicide, and that it was obvious that she had decided in her own mind she wants to die.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The defense had tried to keep this tape out of the trial. Prosecutors wanted it in, not so much for what was said on the tape, but for what wasn`t said. The brothers make no mention of their parents abusing them. Prosecutors have always dismissed that as motivation for the killings. They say the brothers were prompted by hatred for their parents and greed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: So the doctor, the good Dr. Oziel, brings Lyle in and actually records the session. In that session, the brothers talk about that they, quote, "had to" murder their parents, and they mention nothing about years of abuse on themselves, the way they did at trial. That was never even mentioned. They said they hated their father, they hated living in the home, and they wanted to rescue their mother from their father`s infidelities.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ERIK MENENDEZ: And I was telling him that I just felt -- I felt guilty about getting a lot of the money and I didn`t know what to do with it, and I felt like I had just killed my parents and now I was getting all of their money, and I felt -- I felt sort of guilty about that. I mean, you know, I wanted to live and I wanted to be able to live, but I felt guilty about getting all these things that they had worked for.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: We also learned more intimate details of the murders themselves. We learned that the brothers state to Dr. Oziel on tape that the father, Jose Menendez, died very quickly, but the mother, their mother, Kitty, did not, that she was moaning and crying and was trying to crawl away from her own sons as they murdered her.

And what did they do? Did they save her? Did they have a change of heart while their own mother crawled across the floor trying to get away from them?

No. The two brothers, Erik and Lyle Menendez, walk outside to the front porch, reload, then come back in and finish off the murder of their own mother.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

911 OPERATOR: Beverly Hills emergency.

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes, please.

911 OPERATOR: What`s the problem? What`s the problem? What`s the problem?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

911 OPERATOR: Is the person still there? What happened? We have units around. What happened? Who shot who?

LYLE MENENDEZ: (INAUDIBLE) they were here when I came home!

911 OPERATOR: You came home and found who shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and dad!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You teach other young men living in Beverly Hills, Don`t shotgun your parents because you will get the death penalty. I think that`s certainly not a lesson that needs to be taught.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don`t traditionally impose it on wealthy white boys who were wearing crewneck sweaters. On the other side, the jury may say, We don`t want to hear about abuse. We said you`re guilty. Either you say you`re sorry, or you`re going to be executed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: If Dr. Oziel had not recorded that session and then blabbed to his girlfriend that Erik and Lyle Menendez had confessed to him in secrecy under the cone of the doctor-patient privilege -- and then girlfriend goes to police, case cracked.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The brothers` lawyers are trying to show that the shooting was a spur-of-the-moment reaction to their fears, and a psychologist said it was fear that prompted the brothers to fire 15 shots at their parents.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The term is sometimes used "overkill."

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: There`s so much more evidence, although a lot of it is circumstantial. We learn that just two days before the murders of their own parents go down, the two go shopping at a sporting goods store in San Diego, and there they purchase two long guns, shotguns.

Why a shotgun, you may wonder? Turns out there`s a two-week waiting period if you want to buy a handgun in that jurisdiction. So the Menendez brothers settle for long guns, shotguns, Mossberg (ph) shotguns, to avoid the two-week waiting period.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Prosecutors say the brothers planned the killing, driving three hours to San Diego to purchase guns with a fake ID. They contend Lyle and Erik Menendez killed their parents out of hatred and greed for their money.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: And there is more premeditation, as a matter of fact. They had discussed their fear of getting written out of their parents` will and never getting the multi-million-dollar inheritance their mother and father had saved up all those years of hard work.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: Larry, I have wrestled with that question since the first murder case I ever came in contact, the question why. And I`ve had murder cases that occurred over a $10 bill. After that case, I quit asking why, and I started looking at the hard facts.

And frankly, it`s very difficult to swallow that they would kill their parents over money. But let me remind you, there were millions at stake. These were grown men. If they didn`t like the living conditions and they didn`t want to be around their parents anymore, they could leave. Instead, they continued living off their parents. I find their defense very hard to believe.

LARRY KING, HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE": Why didn`t they move, Tammi?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why didn`t they leave?

KING: Leave.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because when you`re sexually abused, you don`t do that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: Within 24 hours after the murders of their parents, Erik and Lyle Menendez had somehow dis-attached the safe, their parents` safe. They had gotten it out of the home and had gone to this probate attorney and encountered his wife, and her words were that they were so excited and gleeful, as a matter of fact, so excited, they could barely get the words out to find out if her husband handled wills and estates. And they had the safe with them.

Well, the defense strategy was that Erik and Lyle Menendez acted in a variant of self-defense. They did not say that they were under attack at that moment by the father or mother, but they did say that they were afraid of their parents, that their parents would kill them some day if they, Erik and Lyle, exposed alleged child molestation by the father on them.

Now, in all the years, never had this been mentioned before. This was not mentioned to any doctors, nurses, psychiatrists, nobody. But that was their defense at trial.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did you say to your mom?

LYLE MENENDEZ: I told her to tell dad to leave me alone, and he keeps touching me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did your mom say?

LYLE MENENDEZ: She told me to stop it and that I was exaggerating and that my dad has to punish me when I do things wrong.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ERIK MENENDEZ: There was light coming in from the hallway, from the TV, and it was real -- really eerie.

I was giving him ammunition and we were just loading as fast as possible. And I remember firing directly at him. I was just firing as I went into the room. I just started firing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In what direction.

ERIK MENENDEZ: In front of me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What was in front of you?

ERIK MENENDEZ: My parents.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you were firing at your parents.

ERIK MENENDEZ: Yes.

LYLE MENENDEZ: There was things shattering, and the noise was phenomenal. And we fired, you know, many, many times, and there were just glass, and you could hear things breaking and you could hear the ringing noises from the booms (ph).

ERIK MENENDEZ: I heard a noise coming from my mom. I guess I would characterize it as a moaning simply because she was -- she was dying.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And what did you do after you reloaded?

LYLE MENENDEZ: I ran around and shot my mom.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Where did you shoot her?

LYLE MENENDEZ: (INAUDIBLE) I shot her close.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) wound number four is on the left side of the head.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I wanted to find out what was going on inside, if someone had been shot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I also noticed that there was a large a portion of the back of his head was missing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Two days before the killing, the brothers travel all the way to San Diego with a false ID to buy 12-gauge shotguns like this one.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It ejects the round of ammunition.

911 OPERATOR: Pardon me?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In cross-examination, Basanich (ph) makes Lyle must listen to his 911 tape to show the jurors what she considers his first-class performance.

LYLE MENENDEZ: (INAUDIBLE)

911 OPERATOR: You came home and found who shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and dad!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You were crying, correct?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And at the same time, you were lying while you were crying, is that correct?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you knew when you called the police that you were going to lie to them, correct?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And then you continued to lie about your involvement in the case, correct?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Right.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: That`s from ABC News specials documentary "Murder in Beverly Hills."

In the first trial there was a maneuver that has rarely been seen in a court of law. There were parallel juries. There were two full juries seated, one for each brother.

The defense was imperfect self-defense. You will rarely hear that because it`s rarely been used and rarely works. It was -- the defense was based on the theory that the brothers had the misguided fear they would be killed by the parents. So that was a, quote, "imperfect self-defense" theory. Well, it was imperfect because both juries deadlocked, two hung juries.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The jury has hopelessly deadlocked, and the court declares a mistrial.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A temporary victory for accused killer Lyle Menendez, another costly defeat for Los Angeles taxpayers, the bill for trying the Menendez brothers already more than a million dollars. Defense attorneys wanted a plea bargain.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And it would be in everyone`s interests, including the taxpayers, to see if we could reach some sort of settlement.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But the prosecution said no way.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You`re talking about two homicides, two murders, two first-degree murders of a mother and father committed by their children. And be damned with how much money it`s going to cost. We`re going to seek justice in this case.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That means a new trial and more testimony supporting the brothers` claims of child abuse.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Here`s a moment that created a hush in the courtroom. Lyle recites from memory the code he says his father insisted he live by.

LYLE MENENDEZ: Today I will be master of my emotions. If I feel depressed, I will sing. If I feel sad, I will laugh. If I feel ill, I will double my labor. If I feel fear, I will plunge ahead. If I feel inferior, I will wear new garments. If I feel poverty, I will think of wealth to come. If I feel insignificant, I will remember my goals. I will be master of my emotions.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: ABC News specials documentary "Murder in Beverly Hills."

The defense attorneys were very maternal and paternal-acting toward them in court, consoling them, picking lint off of their sweater, you know, smoothing their hair in front of the jury much as you would a child. That was part of the defense`s strategy, and many court watchers feared it would work.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You`ve testified you felt guilty (INAUDIBLE)

ERIK MENENDEZ: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did you think of your parents (INAUDIBLE)

ERIK MENENDEZ: I didn`t hear that?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did you think of your parents at that point, by October 31st?

ERIK MENENDEZ: I felt they were these great people that I killed, and I didn`t understand (INAUDIBLE) very much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And do you have any feelings about talking about them in a negative way?

ERIK MENENDEZ: I didn`t want to talk about them in a negative way. I loved them more than I had ever loved them in my life at that point because I felt sad and I felt -- and I just wanted to talk about the good things.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you just thought a $9,000 18-carat gold Rolex would go nicely with your funeral suit, is that right?

LYLE MENENDEZ: No, I didn`t.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In light of the fact that you had killed your parents, did you find it awkward to give this speech on Monday?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes, very.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why didn`t you decline to do so?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Because I felt that my dad would want me to do that and he would have been proud of me to get up there and do it even though I didn`t want to.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You thought your father would be proud of you, even though you are the one that killed him?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes.

KING: And joining us now from prison, where he is allowed occasional calls -- has to call collect -- is Erik Menendez, convicted along with his brother, Lyle. How long have you been in prison now, Erik?

ERIK MENENDEZ: I`ve been in prison for over 15 years.

Being married to me -- Tammi will tell you all about this -- she`s faced a lot of hardship. And in fact, this book has outraged a lot of people. Some people thought it shouldn`t be written. And I disagree. With this book, Tammi isn`t just standing up for me and standing up for herself, she`s standing up for millions of prisoner wives and family members who`ve been demeaned and outcasted because they love a prisoner.

KING: Do you ever regret what you did?

ERIK MENENDEZ: Immensely so. Immensely so. Not a day goes by when I don`t wish I could undo this, bring them back. It`s my unending regret, and in a sense, it`s my real prison.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

911 OPERATOR: Beverly Hills emergency.

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes, please.

911 OPERATOR: What`s the problem? What`s the problem? What`s the problem?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Somebody killed my dad!

911 OPERATOR: Pardon me?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Somebody killed my parents.

911 OPERATOR: What? Who? Are they still there?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: The people...

LYLE MENENDEZ: No, no!

911 OPERATOR: Were they shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Erik (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Private security guards have surrounded the Menendezes` mansion. They say they are here to protect the couple`s sons, Erik and Lyle, because, quote, "the killers may come back for the boys."

911 OPERATOR: Were they shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: They were shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Yes!

911 OPERATOR: What happened?

LYLE MENENDEZ: (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Menendez, you`ve heard the testimony of your brother that you and he killed your parents on August 20th, 1989, did you not?

ERIK MENENDEZ: Yes, we did.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do you believe was the originating cause of you and your brother ultimately winding up shooting your parents?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My dad had been molesting me.

911 OPERATOR: You`re in bed? Do you know if they`re still in the house, the people that did the shooting?

LYLE MENENDEZ: Erik, get away from them!

911 OPERATOR: OK, hang up. Let me talk to Erik. Who was the person that was shot?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and my dad!

911 OPERATOR: Your mom and dad?

LYLE MENENDEZ: My mom and my dad!

911 OPERATOR: OK. Hold on a second.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lyle said years before, his father warned him...

LYLE MENENDEZ: We should keep it just between us or he`d kill me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The jury has concluded that life in prison without the possibility of parole is sufficient punishment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ending today in a surprisingly subdued courtroom, the brothers accepting the sentence in silence as Judge Stanley Weisberg (ph) sealed their fate. "The evidence is quite clear they considered killing one parent, then both parents, then decided ultimately on killing both as part of the conspiracy.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRACE: Second time around as is normal, there was one jury to hear both defendants` cases. This time around, only Erik Menendez took the stand.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Although it is to be expected that they will appeal, I don`t think that there`s -- they have any good grounds for that.

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GRACE: And there was a completely different outcome. They were both convicted in the murders of their parents, Jose and Kitty Menendez. They both received life without parole.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think everyone deep down inside yearns for justice.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Both brothers appeared resigned to life behind bars. And as we`ve learned exclusively in the Menendez probation report, the siblings they say found closure. Lyle Menendez -- - "I`ve visited their graves and I have made peace with Mom and Dad. I no longer feel their anger." And from Erik, "I want people to understand how much I wish we could go back and change what happened."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Four people died that day, you know, because those two guys don`t exist anymore. Whoever they were, they`re sure not there today.

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GRACE: Since then, they have both married behind bars. It`s a bizarre story that seems to be neverending. It`s an ongoing story with Erik and Lyle Menendez.

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