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Pediatrician Found Murdered

Aired January 22, 2013 - 19:00   ET


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Tonight the vicious killing of a beautiful young pediatrician has Philadelphians rattled and asking who would want to kill this very well-liked woman and why in such a horrific manner.


VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight this beautiful, young doctor found strangled in her basement, her hands and feet bound behind her and her body burned. Tonight cops are on the hunt for the sadistic killer. Who would have wanted her dead?

Plus panic and chaos at a Texas college as gunfire erupts. Was it a random shooting?

Plus murder defendant Jodi Arias, the artist? Some of her artwork is now selling for hundreds of dollars online. Is she turning jail into an art studio to capitalize on Travis Alexander`s death?

PAMELA RIMATO-TIRONE, NEIGHBOR: I left the house about 20 after 12, and everything was fine.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They found decedent Melissa Ketunuti, a 34-year- old female, her hands and feet had been bound behind her with some type of rope. There was some type of rope around her neck, which right now appears to be the cause of death, strangulation. And her body was set on fire.

RIMATO-TIRONE: I came back, and this horrible thing had happened.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight uncovering the deadly secrets that led to the murder of this beautiful, young doctor in Philadelphia. Tonight police are hunting for her sadistic killer.

Good evening. Jane Velez-Mitchell coming to you live.

Police say a dog walker -- dog walker -- made the horrifying discovery in the basement of Melissa Ketunuti`s home in Center City Philadelphia. We have to warn you. These details are gruesome.

Police say the young doctor had been strangled with a rope that was still around her neck. She was face down on the floor, her hands and feet tied behind her, and she had been set on fire.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When the police and fire department arrived on the scene, because there`s a fire, they go in the basement and they find a female. Her body is on fire. The fire department puts water on her to put the fire out.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Still inside the house where she was murdered, her loved dog, Pooch, who is now staying with a kindly neighbor.

Neighbors say Melissa lived for her work, her dog and her health. Look at this beautiful woman. She exercised all the time, traveled extensively, and had a lot of friends, according to her personal blog. Police say there was no sign of forced entry and no sign of sexual assault. So who would want this young woman dead? And was she stalked? That`s something police are looking at tonight.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So far we don`t see anyone following her, but like I said, I have detectives back out there now still looking at some other locations that we know that she possibly was at and looking for video that would possibly show her killer.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let`s help police find this horrific killer. Call me: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297. Give us your questions and theories.

Straight out to reporter Oren Liebermann with KYW Television in Philadelphia. Oren, what is the very latest?

OREN LIEBERMANN, REPORTER, KYW TELEVISION: Police have been working since yesterday to try to find whoever was responsible for not only this killing, but a very brutal, as you said, sadistic killing. Unfortunately, police haven`t really been able to rule anybody out yet except the boyfriend. They had Melissa Ketunuti`s boyfriend here in Philadelphia. They interviewed him at the homicide division for quite a while this morning and brought him over to the house to try to figure out if anything was missing.

At first it might seem like robbery might be a motive for this murder, but police say as of right now, it doesn`t look like anything was missing from the house. As you had mentioned, no sign of forced entry; no sign of sexual assault. So other than ruling out Melissa Ketunuti`s boyfriend, police haven`t really been able to start narrowing in on a suspect or group of suspects at this point. They have been working on this for, now, some 36 hours.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: How is Philadelphia reacting? I worked in Philadelphia for a year and a half many years ago. And this is one of the more exclusive parts of town near Rittenhouse Square, which is really the Park Avenue of Philadelphia. Oren, this is considered a very safe neighborhood. Is it not? And does this have the neighborhood rattled?

LIEBERMANN: Absolutely this has rattled the neighborhood. It is a very upscale neighborhood, a very good neighborhood. We spoke with neighbors who lived on the street for six, seven, eight years, and they say in that time, there`s been really no cause for concern, no cause for alarm and then suddenly this. Not only a murder but a brutal murder.

Melissa Kenuti`s -- Ketunuti`s, I`m sorry, her hands and her feet were tied behind her. The rope was still found around her neck. Police say that is the cause of death. She was strangled to death. And after she died, police says she was lit on fire.

There`s nothing run of the mill about this. It is absolutely brutal and has really surprised everybody. Especially because of who this was. This wasn`t just a doctor; this was a pediatric oncologist of a very high pedigree of education.

She got her degree from Stanford. She`d done work at Georgetown, two very big schools. And then she`d gone overseas to do work in Africa before coming back here to Philadelphia. So by all accounts, her entire career was doing good not only for Philadelphia but for kids here. So the murder of this doctor in such a horrific way has really shocked everybody here.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And you said they ruled out the boyfriend. I understood that, from some reports, he was out of town, he lived out of town, they had a long-distance relationship. And they`ve talked to him. So it`s not the boyfriend, according to you, correct?

LIEBERMANN: Right, that`s what we`re hearing so far from police. They had him.


LIEBERMANN: They were interviewing him just to find out whatever he knows. But so far, it doesn`t look like he`s a suspect at this point.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Please -- please stand by, Oren, because you`ve got a lot of good information. Don`t want to lose you while we`re trying to solve this, this horrifying mystery.

Police say Melissa made several stops yesterday before she was killed. Police have several store receipts that were found inside her home. And it`s also possible, because she jogged and ran a lot, that she may have just come home from a run. Here`s Melissa`s neighbor.


RIMATO-TIRONE: I only knew her a little bit as a neighbor. I knew that she exercised all the time. I used to see her out running in the morning sometimes. She was very busy. And sometimes I used to see her jumping into a taxi.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: So Vinnie Parco, private investigator, let`s recap and review. No immediate sign of sexual assault. No sign of forced entry. Her home was reportedly not ransacked. There are no suspects, no motive. The boyfriend has been ruled out. Nothing amiss outside. Somebody walked by ten minutes earlier and said everything seemed fine.

You can see that these are row houses. She had possibly been shopping a little bit before this, because there are receipts. Somebody walked by some of these houses about ten minutes before and said nothing seemed out of the ordinary until her dog walker arrived.

Now Vinnie Parco, private investigator, you have solved many of these types of mysteries. What do you make of it?

VINNIE PARCO, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: I think it`s somebody she worked with, somebody who loved her, and she didn`t reciprocate. I think it`s somebody that obviously she knew, because the dog didn`t bark.

And the funny thing is that, even if you kill somebody and put them on fire, when the fire department got there, the fire was still on. That means that person must -- must have left the apartment minutes before they got there.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely. Yes. And here`s the thing. Her dog walker discovers -- discovers her. So to me, that says she was planning on leaving to go somewhere. Because I have dogs, and I don`t have a dog walker come in unless I`m going to be gone. There`s no need for a dog walker unless I`m going to be gone.

So is it possible that this person may have lured her into going somewhere and then arrived at her door and got in, because there was no sign of forced entry, Vinnie?

PARCO: I would check -- I would check her cell phone to see if we should -- if you`re going to meet somebody, sometimes you call ahead of time, say, "I`m running late, I`m on time." Or maybe the person called her.

I would check her e-mails to see if this person contacted her prior and said, "Look, let`s meet Monday morning at 9 a.m."

So I think it`s somebody that`s close to her. She let the person in the house, so it can`t be a stranger.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Can`t be a stranger, that`s your theory.

OK, Melissa loved her dog, Pooch, a Lab-pit bull mix that is being cared for by a kindly neighbor. Now neighbors say she had a dog walker who would take Pooch out while Melissa was working at the hospital. Listen to this.


RIMATO-TIRONE: She has a very busy schedule. And I know she had dog walkers who took care of Pooch. And I used to see her walking him, too, sometimes. That`s how I knew her.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: So Pooch is now being taken care of by this woman, Melissa`s neighbor, Pamela.

But let`s go to this other person, the dog walker. The dog walker wouldn`t be coming over, again -- and I want to go back to Oren Liebermann. You`re a reporter there on the scene in Philadelphia. So the dog walker has the key to the home. She goes in or he goes in. And have we determined that that -- has that person been ruled out as a person of interest?

LIEBERMANN: Police aren`t ruled anybody out except the boyfriend. We asked about the dog walker, and they said no comment in terms of ruling him out. They`re still considering him as a possibility.

And they were quick to point out that there were quite a few people who had a key to that door, including the dog walker. And there may have been more than one dog walker. She may have had a few people rotating through walking her dog. The boyfriend had a key.

And there was also a lock box on the outside of the door that you could open to get the key if you had the combination to that lock box. So there were certainly a number of people who had access to that home.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And what`s really interesting, and I`m going to get to this in a second, is the type of building these are. You see these are all row houses. Philadelphia is very historic. The architecture goes way back.

But as opposed to a regular home, where you might have a backyard and a front yard and you could get into any number of windows, Sarah Hoye, you`re a CNN reporter. You talked to neighbors. You`re there in Philadelphia.

Row houses don`t offer a whole wide range of areas to break in. And there were no signs of forced entry. But possibly a window. Give us your thoughts on that.

SARAH HOYE, CNN REPORTER: Well, as you said, row houses are literally just that. They`re row houses, and they`re attached to one another. So they share a common wall.

And on this block, the doors to these homes all open onto the same street. They may have back areas, perhaps they have a patio or some type of terrace, but for the most part, all the doors open to the front.

Now, being on that block today, you could not see any sign of forced entry. As Oren from KYW said, there was lock boxes on the door handle, and there was no broken glass, no broken windows. Everything seemed status quo.

So it just makes you wonder, and it also makes the neighbors wonder, what exactly happened? There wasn`t a neighbor I spoke with who could not speak more highly of this woman. They either knew her in some capacity, just in terms of passing her on the street, seeing her at maybe the local CVS, something along those lines.

But there were several residents on that block who would speak with her in passing. All said she was very kind, very sweet and just more private than anything. But there was nothing bad about her that they could see.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. We`re going to continue this discussion, and the calls are lining up. We`re going to take some calls, some theories and questions, on the other side. Stay right there.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When the police and fire department arrive on the scene, because there`s a fire, they go in the basement and they find the female. Her body is on fire. The fire department puts water on her to put the fire out.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She dedicated her whole life to being a doctor and helping kids with cancer, and it`s very, very unfortunate she died this way.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. So many people want to help find this sadistic killer. This is a beautiful young woman, well-traveled, well-educated, beloved. She worked at Children`s Hospital in Philadelphia. Extraordinarily popular and respected. And actually, police say that makes her murder all the more puzzling. Listen.

You know, I want to first go to Amanda, Georgia. Amanda, your question or thought. Amanda, Georgia.

CALLER: Yes, hey, Jane. I was just kind of wondering. Is it possible that it is a patient of hers, family member? Because you said she was an oncologist pediatrician. And I`m just wondering if a patient passed away, and the family member was very mad and blamed the doctors, and maybe they killed her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Jon Lieberman, investigative journalist and host of "Searching for Justice" on AOL, authorities are going to have a very, very large number of people to investigate, precisely because she was a doctor who helped so many people.

JON LIEBERMAN, HLN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, absolutely. And the first thing we did today was we checked the records with the state of Pennsylvania. There`s no disciplinary action pending against her from a patient or anything like that. There are no malpractice suits pending right now, as well. So these are things that police are looking at.

But by all accounts she was a wonderful doctor who helped a number of people.

And I do want to tell you, Jane, we learned a couple things. No. 1, law enforcement, police do have forensics at the scene of the crime. It may be fingerprints. It may be DNA, but they have forensics. Now they need to find out if those forensics match somebody other than the people who are normally there anyway, like the dog walker. That`s one thing.

The other thing is we`re also told they have multiple pieces of surveillance video to go through. Right now, they`re putting together a time line of Melissa`s morning to trace her steps exactly where she went, and they`re enhancing this video to look for any suspicious activity. Anybody looking at her, lurking around corners, anything like that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Well, Rene Sandler, criminal defense attorney out of D.C., when I heard lock box, that immediately got my ears perked up. Because the only time I`ve ever had a lock box on my door ever in my life was when I was renting out my apartment or it was up for sale, and I wanted the broker to be able to come in and show it around.

So that is another aspect I`m wondering if there was something going on with the place. I understand she had lived there for three years. And she originally was in Washington, D.C. And been in Philly, I guess, about five years and staying at this place, this home for three years. There may have been a lot of people who had access due to that lock box.

RENE SADLER, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, you say lock box and instantly, what comes to mind, obviously, is access. But in many lock boxes, depending on the type of lock box it is, like realtors use, there`s actually a code -- a key code, a little computer in there -- that can actually track who comes and goes by code. So there may be a way to track that. This is going to be a very, very difficult case.

And I`d like to make a couple points. No. 1, this is a very precise murder. Any time you see fire, it`s highly personal. Particularly where somebody burns a body. It`s either to get away from evidence, to get rid of evidence, I should say, or something very personal to make a statement. We`re talking about a doctor here. There`s HIPAA regulations and regulations. And this is a doctor who cared for children. So we have a couple of layers here. You have privacy issues and children who were her patients.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`re going to go back to the reporter who was on the scene at the crime scene today, get her observations as we try to solve this terrible, terrible murder of this wonderful person who was doing so much to help the world. We`ve got to figure this one out.

More on the other side.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So far we don`t see anyone following her. But like I said, I have detectives out there now, still looking at some other locations that we know that she possibly was at and looking for video that would possibly show her killer.




RIMATO-TIRONE: I only knew her a little bit as a neighbor. I know that she exercised all the time. I used to see her out running in the morning sometimes. She was very busy. Sometimes I used to see her jumping into a taxi.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Melissa`s neighbors had felt relatively safe. Now, obviously, they`re rattled due to this horrific crime. But they realize Philadelphia is a big city.


RIMATO-TIRONE: We live in the city, but it`s a pretty safe neighborhood. I mean, I`m not saying it`s perfect.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: On the Web site, Philadelphia only gets a 9 on the crime index, when 100 is the safest.

Now, I used to live in Philadelphia. It`s a wonderful city, historic. So many amazing sights that go way back. But like all big cities, there are areas where it can be dangerous to be walking alone at night.

Ironically, the area where Melissa was viciously murdered is one of the nicest parts of town. Her home is only blocks from very exclusive Rittenhouse Square, which is really kind of the Park Avenue of Philadelphia.

Jayne Weintraub, criminal defense attorney, thank you for your patience. OK, we`ve heard that this is -- it seems like a personal crime. To tie a woman`s hands behind her back and her feet behind her back, strangle her and set her on fire, but there is no sign of sexual assault. What do you make of it?

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I think it`s very time- consuming to do just that. To tie somebody up, and then to have the nerve to take the time to burn somebody. That takes a lot of time. That means access to the house, which we`ve all said.

I`m not so sure that the boyfriend is cleared, and I think it`s domestic related. That`s what it reeks to me.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I trust what the police say, vis-a-vis our reporter. We want to make very clear there are no suspects or even persons of interest in this case.

And anybody associated with this case who wants to talk, please, you`re invited on our show.

Let`s go out to the phone lines. Lindsay in Alabama, your question or thought -- Lindsay.

CALLER: Hi, Jane. And I fully agree with your expert. I do think it reeks of a personal account.

My question was this. Well, my comment first was -- the first thing was the specifics of the crime was an honor killing or a shame killing, largely done in Southeast Asia and in some Islamic cultures. My question was, and burning, it doesn`t have to be a family member. It could also be somebody involved who was involved in the community like a, you know, church or some kind of religious organization.

My question was if she was involved in any sort of outside religious group or, you know, possibly had ties to that part of the world?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lindsay, I want to thank you for your very interesting question and your theories. We can tell you that her mother was from Belgium and her dad is from Thailand. And so she has a very interesting and colorful background.

And I -- it`s such a tragedy. And I was reading her blog. I mean, this is a wonderful woman who`s well-traveled, who has traveled to all parts of the world. And just curious about life and highly educated and so intelligent. I mean, we`ve lost a wonderful person.

I have to say, Vinnie Parco, we`re -- this kind of remind me of a case, not that it reminds me, but there could be -- you never know -- parallels to the case of Annie Le.

I don`t know if you remember this tragedy. She was the Yale pharmacy doctoral student who was murdered on the campus of Yale University. She went missing the day before her wedding. And she was found dead five days later, hidden in the wall cavity in the Yale laboratory, and another lab technician in the building was arrested for her murder. Your thoughts on that?

PARCO: Well, as I said before, it could be somebody she works with. She works at a hospital. Thousands of people work in a hospital. You have a mental ward in the hospital. I worked for the medical board many years ago. And I can tell you, some of the doctors are a little nuts themselves.

So who knows? Who knows? Anybody is a suspect, first of all.

And she might have had somebody who really loved her as a friend at work and she invited him in the house, not suspecting anything. And this person could have -- obviously is a murder of rage. Whoever killed her had extreme rage. And to strangle somebody and to burn them, you have to be really, really sick in the head. And who knows? It could be somebody who -- some guy or girl -- well, not a girl, but a guy worked with her that might have loved her and she didn`t -- didn`t love him.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Like a stalking-type situation. And we understand that authorities are checking out the possibility of a stalking situation.

And another possibility, the fact that she ran a lot. And unfortunately, some women -- we`ve covered many cases on this show where women who were runners, who were out there, who look great and who are running through the neighborhood, they attract the attention of somebody who`s a sicko. And we saw it in the Chelsea King case in California, where she was grabbed by someone. Sometimes they`re grabbed outside. In this case, whoever did this gained entry to her apartment.

So sad. Our hearts go out to her family. And we will try to help authorities solve this case.

Up next, panic and chaos as shots are fired at a Texas college. Did students get caught in the crossfire? We`re going to talk to a student who was on campus when this latest horror occurred, next.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I couldn`t hear anything. For me, I was just trying to get under a table, get into the back corner of the room. And immediately, I just wanted to find some sort of shelter inside the room.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They told people to get down.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I saw three people just, you know, arguing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A shooting has taken place. At first glance, it appears to be between two individuals.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just heard like boom, boom, boom, like a lot of gunshots.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He started shooting that way. Maybe I want to say nine shots.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Listening to all the shooting. When I looked back, I saw just people running towards me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Two students we believe were shot in cross fire.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just saw him on the ground. He was in handcuffs.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We believe three people injured at this time. Again, we also have a person of interest that`s being detained.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All I can do is stay away from it and pray.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Panic and chaos as gunfire rings out at a Texas college campus smack in the middle of the afternoon. Eyewitnesses say some sort of fight, some sort of argument at Lone Star College in Houston -- somebody exploded in violence. People were terrified.

Cops say they have two people in custody as we speak. One of them had a student ID. They were both hurt and a maintenance man was also shot in the cross fire. We don`t know their conditions tonight.

But here`s one student describing the terror of it all moments after the shots rang out.


AMANDA VASQUEZ, STUDENT AT LONE STAR COLLEGE: All of a sudden, I heard rapid shots firing. And people started running in the hallways. A few students even came into our room seeking shelter. And we closed the door and got a table against the door. We were hiding. I was trying to call my mom to let her know I was ok. (inaudible) Then the minutes later, the police came in and they said put your hands behind your head and to run out.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Straight out to Chelsey Zardes (ph); you are a student at Lone Star College. You were there when the shots were fired. First of all, I`m happy you made it out ok. I can`t imagine what it was like to go through all that.

So tell us. Tell us what happened, what you heard, what you saw and what you did -- Chelsey.

CHELSEY ZARDES, STUDENT AT LONE STAR COLLEGE (via telephone): I was actually sitting down in the Fine Arts Building eating my lunch with three of my friends. And we saw people running downstairs, running from the courtyard looking very afraid. A girl came into the building and she said someone was just shot. We immediately just grabbed our things and we went upstairs seeking shelter in someone`s office or classroom.

It was really scary. We didn`t really know what was going on.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Given everything that`s happened in recent months with mass shootings, were you afraid, oh my gosh, this could be another mass shooting?

ZARDES: Yes. I definitely was afraid because we didn`t know anything was going on. We later found out that it was just something personal. But it was definitely scary.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And now that you look back on it, was it sort of a surreal experience? Do you go into a flight mode or do you become sort of paralyzed with fear and have to force yourself to move?

ZARDES: I went into survival mode, I think. I just wanted to make sure I was safe and that I knew everything that was going on around me.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So you got the heck out of there? Because we were hearing some people were told stay put. The school is on lockdown, just get into a safe place in your immediate vicinity and stay right there, don`t move. Because there was quite a bit of time where they hadn`t apprehended the second person involved. They didn`t want people walking perhaps into that person. So how did you manage that -- Chelsey?

ZARDES: We were on lockdown for awhile. And actually SWAT came in. They went to each room and they told everyone to get out and they looked and made sure no one else was in there. But SWAT did escort us out of the building to safety.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I`m so glad you`re ok.

What were these two people arguing about? It seems that they knew each other. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He said, I don`t want to fight you, I`m not trying to go to jail. He actually turned away from the situation. But whatever ticked him off, whatever they said, he turned around, got it out his backpack and just started shooting. Maybe I want to say nine shots like he emptied out his clip.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Unbelievable. You just heard it there. One of the men allegedly had a gun in his backpack. Jon Leiberman, host of "Searching for Justice" on AOL, have we got to the point where every student at every college in America needs to go through a metal detector when they get inside schools to make sure they don`t have guns inside their backpacks?

JON LEIBERMAN, HLN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I was going to say it`s crazy. I mean gone are the days when people use their fists or even knives when they get in altercations. In this case both pulled out pistols right away and law enforcement is saying that one guy actually ran into the woods after he allegedly shot the other guy so they had to track him down.

I mean it`s absolutely crazy. I don`t know. Is the answer metal detectors? Is the answer stiffer gun laws? There`s a million different questions. But the reality is that our kids should not have to be afraid walking from class to class in an elementary school, a middle school, a high school, a community college or any college.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let me say this. Texas is a concealed carry state; however, concealed weapons are banned from educational institutions in Texas. For many reasons, that person was breaking so many laws if the facts of the case are what they pan out to be. Obviously with chaos, a lot of things are later re-sorted out and re-explained.

But it appears that he had the gun in his backpack. Now student, Amanda Vasquez says she was crouched in the library when she heard the shots go off. Listen to this. She`s terrified.


VASQUEZ: I told my mom that someone was shooting in the building. And I didn`t know what was going to happen. And at first she didn`t believe me because, of course, you never think this thing would happen to you. But I kept telling her it`s happening. I was telling my mom that I loved her and I don`t know what`s going to happen.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`re delighted to have psychologist Wendy Walsh with us. This young lady is saying, she`s telling her mom, I don`t know if I`m going to live. I love you. The fear and the sheer terror that these shootings inflict on everyone, one person was hospitalized for a medical condition -- either a heart attack or a stroke, which to me shows the level of fear over an argument. Go ahead.

WENDY WALSH, PSYCHOLOGIST: Oh, absolutely Jane. The amount of trauma that someone can experience whether they were shot at or not, whether they were in the same building. If they were only on campus is enormous.

And I mean what have we come to? Is this the Wild, Wild West that people are pulling out guns? I used to say the grandfather of psychologist Sigmund Freud said the first man to hurl a stone instead of a word -- hurl a word instead of a stone has evolved. These guys haven`t evolved they regressed. They got new stones in the form of bullets. Have we not learned how to deal with our conflicts through words?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And all of this is happening in the wake of the Newtown shooting horror -- an unimaginable, unspeakable tragedy that haunts the nation where a gunman killed 26 people as we know at the school including 20 precious, innocent children.

Today`s shooting also erupting at a school causing a lot of people, as you just heard from one person who was there, to fear this is another random mass shooting in progress. Listen to this from earlier today.


TERRY ROBBINS, WORKS AT LONE STAR COLLEGE: Someone said that they had one guy and we don`t know how many it was. It`s very scary. It`s very chaotic. You`d think if they made us go to the library -- I mean to the cafeteria, if you can`t find the guy, how do you know he`s not in the crowd with us? All I can do is stay away from windows and pray.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jayne Weintraub, people were obviously also rattled because of the Aurora movie theater massacre. It`s sad that we have come to a point where there`s relief when, oh, we learn it`s not a mass shooting with mass casualties, but it`s still a shooting violence on campus.

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: And that`s because it`s a cultural issue. We can`t go a month in this country without some horrific shooting on campus. It doesn`t matter whether it`s a random shooting aimed at a faculty member or a student or for some other reason. Or if some two idiot kids have guns in their backpacks.

And you`re right. You hit it right on the head. Even in the Wild West state of Texas, they have a carrying concealed firearm on a campus is a specific felony crime. These kids have utter disregard but don`t all these shooters?

It`s a cultural issue. We need a ban on guns. If it takes metal detectors to keep our kids safe, then that`s what we need to do until these gun manufacturers stop in this country.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Listen, from cold-blooded killer to artist -- are you sitting down people -- Jodi Arias making money from behind bars. Listen to this.


JODI ARIAS: I would never stab him. If I had it in me anywhere to kill him, the at least I could have done was make it as humane as possible. Quick or something, you know?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight we are really hearing something very disturbing about what we can all expect when the defense begins to present its case in the Jodi Arias murder trial. Are they going to try to use the victim`s own words to trash him?




ARIAS: I was not at Travis`s house.

I was not at Travis`s house.

If I`m found guilty, I don`t have a life.

If I hurt Travis, if I killed Travis, I would beg for the death penalty. If Travis were here today, he would tell you it wasn`t me.


ARIAS: That looks like me. Well, the cat scratched. She`s a feral cat.

If I was going to try to kill somebody, I would use gloves. I have plenty of them.

It`s hurting my reputation. I`m all for the 10 commandments -- "Thou shalt not kill." I`m still friends with my ex-boyfriends, they are all still alive. I guess there`s something that`s wrong with me psychologically. I think of the butterfly effect.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: An eye-popping new discovery in the Jodi Arias murder case. Is this so-called cold-blooded killer using her artistic skills to make money from behind bars by sketching? Even though she admits to killing her ex-boyfriend? Is she busy drawing artwork while her defense team gears up to trash the victim?

The stunning 32-year-old photographer confessed that yes, she stabbed her ex-boyfriend 29 times and sliced Travis Alexander`s throat from ear to ear, practically decapitating him and shooting him in the face. She claims it was all in self-defense. In fact, she originally said she had absolutely no motive.


ARIAS: What`s my motive?

FLORES: Jealousy? Anger? Fear? Fear of being alone? Angry at him for not keeping you in his life? I don`t know. That`s why I`m trying to figure it out. There were so many motives with you.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: The jury has gotten used to seeing photos like these of Travis`s autopsies, but now there are new pictures from Jodi herself up for auction. These hand drawn photos of models and celebrities like Grace Kelly are posted on eBay. They`re colored drawings. There they are right there. Take a look at them. One is going for $800.

According to ABC News, the profits are helping Jodi`s family during the trial. But is she actually capitalizing on Travis Alexander`s horrible death?

Straight out to psychologist and expert at, Wendy Walsh, what on earth does this say about Jodi`s mentality that she is coming up with some pretty detailed artwork -- look at that, Grace Kelly -- while she`s on trial for murder.

WALSH: You know, if I can say one thing, Jane, I`m actually really surprised that she`s such a good artist. And again not placing any judgment on her, she may be going into her right brain, her creative brain as a way of self-consoling herself and reducing anxiety because she`s in a very anxiety-provoking position right now. She`s on a murder trial.

So I will bet you that art has been her go-to place to help her calm herself. And so she figures she has this artwork. She has a name out there. We know she has a little bit of narcissism. Why not sell it on the Internet and see if she can get some money?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t think, with all due respect, I understand what you`re saying. They are -- I was surprised at how good the drawings are, for lack of a better word.

But Jayne Weintraub, it offends our moral sensibilities that she`s cashing in on this.

WEINTRAUB: It does. You know what it shows me? It shows me what a waste of gift and talent it is. And on the other side, you think who is buying this stuff?

Then you look at all the groupies --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: There`s always sickos to buy, you know that.

WEINTRAUB: Of course -- you know that want to marry Scott Peterson. It`s the same kind of thing. But it`s not offensive that she`s trying to make money for her family. I look at that as a beautiful picture of Grace Kelly and wonder how did she get to sitting in a death penalty case? That`s what bothers me.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And while Jodi is drawing pretty pictures, the defense sharpening their pencils, getting ready to trash the victim. We hear that they are going to play sex phone conversations between Jodi and Travis.

I want to go to Rene Sandler, criminal defense attorney, isn`t that like taking a victim and using his own words to defend the person who killed him?

RENE SANDLER, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: As I`ve said before, this relationship is on trial. What went on between these two people is directly relevant to this case and plays directly into the theme of the defense. It`s relevant, it should be provided to the jury. This is a search for the truth. Both sides need to be shown here.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t know. I think that to use private, personal, intimate sex conversations -- first of all, why is it being taped? Did he know that he was being taped? And secondly, to use those personal sex conversations that he may have been goaded into saying things to help the person who killed him, I have a problem with it. I really do.

We`re going to debate it on the other side -- the Arias defense getting ready to trash Travis Alexander. Is Jodi trying to force Travis to testify for her from beyond the grave? We`re going to dive deep into that in a second.

And also tomorrow night right here at 7:00 p.m. Eastern on HLN, we have some special guests who are going to be joining us to discuss this really disturbing, I think, turn of events.


ARIAS: If I`m found guilty, I don`t have a life. I`m not guilty. I didn`t hurt Travis. If I hurt Travis, if I killed Travis, I would beg for the death penalty.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. We are going to debate now with our panel. Let`s put up the four boxes with our panelists. And we`re going to do that on the other side actually. We`re just getting you ready for it. We`re going to debate what the defense plans to do and are they smearing somebody who can`t defend himself because he`s dead -- the victim of the defendant?



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In his phone calls he talks of his fantasies, his fantasies with Jodi of tying her to a tree and putting it -- forgive me -- (EXPLETIVE DELETED) all the way. Jodi pretends to climax during this phone call. Travis tells her that she sounds like a 12-year-old girl who is having an orgasm for the first time. And then he tells her, it`s so hot.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s the voice of Jodi Arias` defense attorney, in her opening statements. She promised that she would play recordings, so now we`re really getting a sense that what we`re going to do is play sex conversations between Jodi and Travis to try to paint a picture of Travis as some sort of sexual deviant.

Well, who believes that that is really the right way to go? Who thinks that is dirty pool? Let`s start with Rene Sandler, criminal defense attorney. Do you think that`s ok?

SANDLER: I do. I absolutely do. This is about an individual who is on trial for her life. And if a judge makes a determination that it`s relevant, then it must come in. And let a jury decide what weight to give these statements at the appropriate time. But absolutely should come in.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Jayne Weintraub as a theme of the defense, to tape conversations -- I mean who amongst us would want our most private, personal conversations to be played before the world? Can you imagine how angry Travis Alexander`s family, how violated they must feel?


WEINTRAUB: Jane, she could die as a result of this verdict. This isn`t just had her life. This could be her death, number one. This isn`t about Travis` family. This is about Jodi Arias, whether she is guilty or not guilty, whether she had the right to self-defense. This is a death penalty case.

This isn`t a case for TV. This is a real criminal trial. The defense has every right to have its day in court. It`s not to show he`s a sexual deviant. It`s to show the relationship, and it`s to show her fear and what was going on and the power and control he had over her. That`s obviously what they`re going after.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: A conversation may have absolutely no bearing on someone`s behavior.

WEINTRAUB: But it might. The judge must have made that decision

WALSH: Jane?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- might have absolutely not -- go ahead, quickly.

WALSH: It`s Dr. Walsh here. Listen. Jane, sexual fantasies have nothing to do with real life. And this could easily mislead the jury. Because fantasies are just that, they are fantasies.

And that`s the number one human sexual fantasy is forced sex. So they may play that out, but that doesn`t mean that he would ever force himself on her in any physical way in real life.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you.

WEINTRAUB: To get 27 stab wounds --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Phone sex does not equal action in real life.

More on the other side.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: "In Session`s" Jean Casarez tracking the trial in Arizona. What do we know about these sex tapes?

JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION": Well, what we`ve heard is that they include many different things. It will be the first time the jury hears the voice of Travis Alexander.

But as your panel said, and Jayne Weintraub said, this is a death case. This is a matter of life or death, and it`s all about the state of mind of Jodi. And the defense has a burden to show that this was a justified killing. If they don`t meet that burden in the defense case, self-defense may not even go to the jury.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but I like what Wendy Walsh said about you can`t take a fantasy that somebody is on the phone and saying I would like to do this to you and that to you and extrapolate they would actually do that in real life, Jean.

CASAREZ: But the point is what is in the mind of Jodi Arias, her subjective state of mind. That`s the issue.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but why were these phone calls even taped? Did Travis know he was being taped? Who tapes conversations like these? I hope that the prosecution manages to make those points and we are going to continue this important debate tomorrow on our show with a very special guest.

Meantime, picking up very interesting coverage, our own Nancy Grace.