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Baby Hope`s Cousin Admits To Sexual Abuse; Convicted Mother Gives Birth To Fourth Inside Psychiatric Hospital; Reality Show Contestant Commits Suicide
Aired October 14, 2013 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST (voice-over): A mysterious cold case, 22 years ago, a little girl`s body is found stuffed in a cooler and dumped by the side of a highway. Today, her cousin admits to sexual abuse and murder. Hear what her daughter is saying about the daughter`s gruesome death, and why she remains silent until now.
Plus, she was incarcerated after killing her three young children. But now, she`s just given birth to a fourth child inside the psychiatric hospital. Our behavior bureau explains what goes on behind closes doors in these institutions.
And a reality show contestant commits suicide after a long battle with mental illness. His mother will join me exclusively to speak about his death and what could have prevented it.
Let`s get started.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Good evening.
My co-host is attorney and Sirius XM radio host Jenny Hutt.
And coming up, a woman defined to a psychiatric hospital for having killed three of her young children.
Jenny, she just gave birth to another.
JENNTY HUTT, CO-HOST: I don`t get it.
PINSKY: Well, you`re going to get it when we talk and figure on you how this does happen.
But, first, the cold case mystery of Baby Hope. Now, Jenny, I know that those of you in New York City, this has been a story that`s been on people`s minds for a couple decades, right?
HUTT: Yes, huge story. They treated this baby, this killed child like she was one of our own. I mean, there was a huge funeral at a very fancy funeral parlor in New York City.
PINSKY: Well, in fact, we`re going to talk to the detective that oversaw all of that. He personally invested time into this baby`s handling after she is -- it was a cold case. The body was discovered inside a picnic cooler at the side of a highway 22 years ago. Her identity and who had killed her baffled police until this past weekend.
Take a look.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A cold case now cracked open.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The decomposed body of a four year old girl was found stuff in this cooler. Her body was folded in half and bound. She had been sexually abused.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we saw was a child, looked at each other. We used some expletives to describe the person who did this to this little baby.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No one ever claimed the body.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Fifty-two-year-old Conrado Juarez at the Bronx apprehended and arrested.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police say Juarez has admitted to the crime.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police say he sexually assaulted and then smothered Anjelica, before stuffing her little body in a cooler. Baby Hope`s real name is now on her tombstone, a child whose alleged killer, a cousin, has finally been caught.
PINSKY: Unbelievable story.
Joining me to discuss tonight, HLN anchor Lynn Berry, Mike Eiglarsh, attorney at speaktomark.com, David Young, former criminal court judge and host of "Justice with a Snap", Loni Coombs, former prosecutor, author of "Your Perfect and Other Lies Parents Tell."
Lynn, I`m going to start with you. Please walk us through the detective work as you understand it.
LYNN BERRY, HLN HOST: Let`s talk about this being a case of perseveres and good old-fashioned detective work.
So, back in July was the 22nd year anniversary of Baby Hope being found, so police put out a huge outpouring of another round of missing person posters, a reward -- well, there was a tipster that put together a conversation she had with someone at a Laundromat years ago of talking about her murdered sibling. It was very similar to the case of Baby Hope.
That led police to the mother of Baby Hope. They actually had her lick an envelope to get the DNA from the mother that linked her to Baby Hope, and then it just became a creation of a family tree and a family timeline that led them to who they believe was the suspect. He did confess, but let`s not forget, he pled not guilty.
PINSKY: Which is bizarre. I want to talk with my legal people about that. But, first, I want to remind people reporters from "New York Post" spoke to the mom of Baby Hope, who was crying through the door, saying she was devastated and she was, quote, "too emotional to talk because of everything they are going through".
And she added, "You simply wouldn`t understand my pain." She also refused to say why she had never reported the child missing.
Though, Lynn, one last question, or maybe I`ll throw this out to Loni -- did this have something to do with her fear of being deported, you think?
LONI COOMBS, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Well, what we have heard in different reports is she went through an ugly divorce with her husband. She has a number of children. But with this husband, she had three kids. He took two of her daughters and took off. She didn`t know where they were, she thought he`d taken him back to Mexico. For many years, she asked him, where are my children? Where are my children? He would not tell her.
Years later, he actually returned one of the sisters, this is the sister that apparently might have been talking in the Laundromat, was overheard and led to the capture of the killer. But she never knew for sure where this daughter, Baby Hope, she thought that she was with the father or with other relatives. She didn`t think, she says, that she was dead.
That is why she never reported her dead. She thought she was somewhere with the father.
PINSKY: Now, we`ve been trying to get a picture of the sister. We don`t have it -- we`re going to get it eventually. We`re working really hard. But apparently, the sister looks very much like the girl in the drawing, which is kind of interesting.
So, Judge Young, give me an understanding here. Why can this guy confess and then plead not guilty?
DAVID YOUNG, FORMER JUDGE: Well, this thing -- I didn`t call him a guy, Dr. Drew, he`s just a thing. He`s absolutely a horrific human being, but what he`s probably doing, he`s trying to make a deal for himself. So, if he pleads guilty, then, you know, there`s no deal that he`s going to have, but if he pleads not guilty. Then his lawyers can talk to the prosecutors and try to convince them that they shouldn`t -- this sorry ass of human being should not spend the rest of his life. If it were my court, done. Done.
PINSKY: Mark would be the guy standing there. Mark is the defense lawyer. He`s nodded his head, yes, that`s what I would do. He would defend this thing. Way to go, Mark.
MARK EIGLARSH, ATTORNEY: Oh, come on.
PINSKY: Just saying, just saying.
PINSKY: The other thing, Mark, I want to ask you, is that because he apparently was sexually abusing this girl, was smothering her to stifle her screams for help. I guess alleges this was accident, so now it`s second- degree murder?
EIGLARSH: OK. First of all, I`m not representing him.
Second of all, if everybody wants him to go to prison, that first has to happen with an attorney. So, I, theoretically, would perform a valuable service by being by his side and affording him competent counsel, because you can`t get to prison until he has his constitutional rights defended.
EIGLARSH: Secondly. Yes, this does depend upon the facts, Drew. What they charge him with hinges on exclusively what they can prove. Because this happened 22 years later and there`s a lack of evidence, most of what they`re relying on flows from his lips.
They don`t want to discredit him. They want to take what he says. If that equals second-degree murder, run with it. If they can`t prove first, you don`t charge him with first.
PINSKY: So, Jenny, I`m going to you -- hang on, Jenny -- what I heard Mark say is this guy is going to get him in prison.
HUTT: Really? I rather, Mark, got into a cooler --
EIGLARSH: Did I say that?
HUTT: -- closed it and left it on the side of the road.
PINSKY: OK. Loni?
COOMBS: Well, I`ll tell you -- I`m surprised they didn`t file first degree murder charges on this, because I think if anyone deserves the death penalty, this guy does. And the only way you become eligible for the death penalty is if you charge him with first degree murder with an aggravating circumstance.
Let me tell you -- this guy, based on his own statement, the alleged statement, he goes into this home, where this little girl was staying, four years old, I mean, she`s a baby, she`s not even in preschool. He decides he is going to rape her. So, he sodomizes her.
She is 4 years old. He is a 30-year-old. And as she screams out in pain and agony and fear, he decides he doesn`t like the scream. So, he suffocates her while he is sodomizing her.
Those are the facts that he gave to the police. And then he takes her boy, he bends it in half, stuffs it into a cooler, stuffs some Diet Coke cans on top and throws it out like a piece of trash.
That I believe is a type of person that deserves the death penalty.
PINSKY: I would no one else to say anything. I think Loni tied it up very nicely. I agree with you, I don`t think there`s many that could disagree.
Now, we`re going to speak any to the lead detective in this case, the so- called Baby Hope case. He actually visited her grave every year after the body was found, was involved in the funeral. He was deeply invested in this girl`s, shall we call it, well-being, memory. He`s going to be with us when we come back.
And later, a woman incarcerated for having killed her three children gets pregnant again inside the psychiatric hospital. Back after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The angels are rejoicing.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it`s fantastic that the detective kept after it.
JERRY GIORGIO, LEAD DETECTIVE: I always felt there were other people that knew about this. There were other people that knew about this. This could not be a secret. How can you not miss a 5-year-old or 4-year-old, whatever she was?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Back with my co-host Jenny Hutt. Also Lynn, Mark, Judge David and Loni.
We`ve been discussing the toddler who had been discovered inside a picnic cooler, a 4-year-old at the side of a highway, 22 years old, both her identify, who killed her and baffled police until the past weekend. Her cousin has now been arrested and charged.
We`re joined by Jerry Giorgio. He is the lead detective on the Baby Hope case.
Jerry, what is your reaction, first of all, I`ve got a million questions for you. This has been a big part of your life for a long time. What`s your reaction to this arrest?
GIORGIO (via telephone): I`m elated more than I can describe. It was a long time coming. I forever was an optimist in believing that some day someone would step up and give us the information to our killer, and that`s exactly how it happened. We had a woman call, a tipster as we referred to her, and she had been given some information in five or six years ago, by a little girl, she was in the Laundromat and this young teenage gal was talking to her. She was a neighborhood person and it was not in the borough in Manhattan. She was in Queens, I think, I believe.
And this little girl said, you know, have you seen the news report it is about that little girl? It must have been an anniversary of her death. It might have been 20th -- no, it wasn`t 20th -- it was publicized every year --
PINSKY: Jerry, my panel actually has questions for you as well.
Mark, you have something for Jerry?
EIGLARSH: Yes, Jerry first of all, thank you. I wanted to ask you, we were analyzing in the first block why it`s second-degree murder and not first degree. If you were charging this case, would you have made it first or second and why?
GIORGIO: Well, the statute has recently been changed to maybe it a first- degree murder. Because this happened before the law had been passed, he was charged with felony murder, that it was murder during the commission of another act, which was his attempt to have sexual relations. He made it to believe in his confession that it was unsuccessful.
GIORGIO: He had had you been up against her or whatever he was doing at that time, that he had ejaculated and --
BERRY: Jerry, Lynn here. I just have a quick question. It was apparent this girl when she was in the house of her father was apparently tortured. She was only 28 pounds at 4 years old. She was malnourished.
PINSKY: So something else was going on.
BERRY: Something else was going on, and why aren`t there any additional charges, i.e., the mother for not reporting her missing, or anyone?
GIORGIO: Because the statute of limitations has run out. Whatever crime was committed, whether she was mistreated or beaten or tortured, or not fed, and we all believe -- we concur she was probably malnourished. As far as we were concerned, after the autopsy and discussing it with the medical examiner, this poor young lady, our baby as we referred to her, had a terrible, terrible four years of living.
PINSKY: And, Jerry, is that why you were so moved to get so deeply involved in this case? There something about it that triggered something personal in your own history?
GIORGIO: Every and all cases involving children, very, very young people, affects detectives differently from any other case. In this particular case, we got back to the office wanted to call up to see our missing persons unit must have a report about a missing girl. Well, that never came to pass. By the end of the day, we were convinced we had a total mystery.
And I sometimes described it as, you know, looking at the body at the scene, it`s like her little hand just reached up and clutched a piece of all our hearts. We immediately took her as our own.
PINSKY: Jerry, but it clearly clutched yours.
PINSKY: For sure. Can you tell me why? What is it about you that hand reached in and actually -- it sounds like it still has a grip on you to this day?
GIORGIO: It`s a feeling that comes over you. Where does it come from? How did it begin?
As we worked the case, initially we didn`t have a name. And then we said, hey, we can`t call her the baby, the baby, the baby, the victim, the victim. We came up with Baby Hope, because we all had hope, at least the initial team working the case that somebody we would find the person responsible.
And as time went by, and then it came a time when they were going to bury her in potters` field with a number on her grave, because she didn`t have an identity, we said no way, no how, we`re going to bury this baby. Whatever the cost maybe, you know, we`ll incur the costs, but the funeral home was good to us, the archdiocese was good to us. They gave us the plot at the cemetery --
PINSKY: I can`t help, but I have a strange feeling. Did you and your wife lose a child or something?
GIORGIO: No, not at all.
In fact, when I looked at my children back then, I would say, you know, God forbid that some strangers, something like this would happen to a member of my family, you know, how would I react? How would I feel?
And looking at her, looking at that poor emaciated malnourished body, we kind of agreed or we openly said it or we felt it that this child had not had any love, any affection, any care in her short life.
And we said, if anybody is going to give that to her, it`s going to be us now, the very least we can bury her.
PINSKY: And, Jerry, it`s a last question from Loni, because I can tell Loni has been affected similarly to you, yourself, Jerry. I can see it in your face, Loni. So, last question.
COOMBS: Yes, Detective, I just want to tell you, you really -- when I read bout what you and your fellow officers did for this baby, it touched my heart. For 18 years, I worked as a prosecutor and with detectives, and, you know, you have hundreds of murder cases. You have lots of victims, but what you did for this baby, by giving her this beautiful funeral and your wife going out and purchasing a brand-new might communion dress to lay her to rest and you gave her the loving family that she didn`t have when she was alive.
And I just think that, you know, that is what human beings do. I just love that you did that and your fellow officers never gave up. Every anniversary, you went back and canvassed the neighborhood, and put up a surveillance camera to watch the grave to see if anyone showed up.
I -- my hats off to you and I think you went above and beyond what police work calls for, and really showed some love and respect for this beautiful baby, and now, you`ve been able to find justice for her as well.
GIORGIO: I thank you for those kind words.
PINSKY: It`s very emotional for everybody. Thank you, Jerry.
EIGLARSH: Thank you, Jerry.
GIORGIO: Thank you.
PINSKY: Thank you, my friend.
OK, panel, take a deep breath everybody.
We got another interesting case next, a woman who killed three children, she did it with her own hands. And now, she`s pregnant again while in a psychiatric hospital. The behavior panel explains what goes on inside the so-called secure facilities. And later, a reality show star with a history of mental illness commits suicide. His mother joins us exclusively.
Back after this.
PINSKY: Time for behavior bureau.
And I`m back with my co-host Jenny Hutt.
And, Jenny, I want to say something about the last segment we just went through. You know, we started that segment looking into a story, a horrific story that Loni so vividly painted for us, about a young girl who is murdered and we`re trying to find out about the justice. For us, that`s why I love about this show, it became a story about a man and his humanity. Yes?
HUTT: Yes, and he never gave up searching, and he got everyone to stand by him and helped search and find out who did this horrific crime --
PINSKY: Yes. But in that perseverance, it was about human touch that he was touched in a human way, and it moved him, moved us, moved all of us, and he was affected his whole life. Now, he has justice, which is an important part of this, putting closure to his story. But it`s breathtaking.
OK. So take a beat. We`re going to change gears. Thank God it`s the behavior bureau. It`s going to help me with this. All my therapists are going to come and support us, Jenny. All right. Ready for that?
HUTT: Yes, because this story is outrageous, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: No, for me, I need a bit of emotional support while we cover these horrible stories, OK?
So, Leatrice Brewer, that`s what we`re going to talk about. She murdered her three small children by drowning them in a bathtub.
Take a look at this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Leatrice Brewer, a mother of three, called 911 to say she had killed her children.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The three children were found lying in bed side by side, in their pajamas.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She even spelled her name for the 9/11 operator.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cops were greeted by the mother who led them to the gruesome scene inside the bedroom. Sources say the young siblings were stabbed and drowned.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jewel was also cut across the throat.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Before this incident, there had been signs of trouble.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She started using drugs.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Leatrice Brewer had been arrested six times on charges, including assault and weapons possession.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Child Protective Services was alerted by the father. Innocent Michael, who was seeking custody, that he felt Brewer was going to hurt them.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She neglected them, used to left them in the house all the time by themselves.
PINSKY: She was found not guilty, Jenny, because of mental disease or defect, as it says in the law. She was placed in a psychiatric hospital. Now, we`re learning she gave birth to another child in the hospital.
Joining mess to discuss, Samantha Schacher, host of "Pop Trigger" on the Young Turks Network, clinical and forensic psychologist Cheryl Arutt, Danine Manette, criminal investigator, author of "Ultimate Betrayal," Valorie Burton, life coach and author of "Happy Women Live Better."
And now, joining us by phone, Tom Foley, he is the attorney for the father of two of the children who had been killed by Leatrice.
Tom, just a couple of questions. How did your client find out that this woman had given birth to another child?
TOM FOLEY, ATTORNEY (via telephone): Dr. Drew, he was contacted by somebody, an attorney who had been appointed to represent the interests of the child about a year or so ago, and asked whether or not Brewer`s mother would be a fit guardian for the child. So that`s the way he found out.
PINSKY: What is he thinking? What is he saying? What are you guys position now?
FOLEY: Well, the decision of the guardianship is something that was out of his hand. I mean, what he`s thinks is what -- I can`t even compare it to comparable situation because it`s so outrageous and outlandish what has happened here. And he went through having to bury his children after what this woman did to him, and now he feels like he`s going through the same type of process again. It`s just so crazy.
PINSKY: And is the hospital in any way explaining what happened here? Why this happened? How it happened? Is there -- are they just not on the record with it yet?
FOLEY: There`s really nothing that -- there`s no information that we can get from them because of the privacy laws that protect her.
PINSKY: Yes, fantastic. Thank you, Tom.
I want to show the panel and the viewers what Tom`s client had said to WNBC. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
INNOCENT DESMESYEUZ, FATHER OF TWO DECEASED BOYS: She told me Leatrice had a baby while she was in that facility. How come she had another kid also when she`s mentally ill? Don`t know, you know, what she`s supposed to be doing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Valorie, I wonder if you have a reaction to this so star?
VALORIE BURTON, LIFE COACH: Everyone in this case dropped the ball from the very beginning. Families who dropped the ball, the Child Protective Services dropped the ball. And now, it`s five years later and we find out that the psychiatric ward has somehow allowed this woman to be in position to get pregnant.
And it`s amazing to me because we`ve been talking this whole show about children. It saddens me that there are so many children in situations where there`s just no protection. My question is: where were those fathers? Where were the grandparents? The siblings? The aunts? The uncles?
This doesn`t happen in isolated situations. And people need to start paying more attention to what`s going on with these children who can`t protect themselves.
DANINE MANETTE, CRIMINAL INVESTIGATOR: What I`m not surprised about is this woman was able to get pregnant in a facility.
PINSKY: Hey, hang on, I interrupt you, I want to stop you right there
PINSKY: Hold on. Danine, our lay people Samantha and Jenny were like huh, what, their heads are spinning around. You and I have spent time in and around institutional setting. I worked in a psychiatric house of 25 years.
Cheryl, did you work for a long time in a psych hospital?
CHERYL ARUTT, FORENSIC PYSCHOLOGIST: I have not, but I`ve heard about a lot of things that should not be happening.
PINSKY: Right. Of course.
So, Danine you and I have been in the institutions, so explain what you mean by not being surprised, because I`m not surprised, I`m unhappy. You know what I mean? If it had happened in my facility, oh, God, this stuff happens, you try your best. Explain how that works.
MANETTE: Right. Well, I have worked in locked facilities. The thing is that when these people are in there, their only connection to the outside world is the caretakers, the janitors, the guards, not necessarily the other patients. Those aren`t the people that are necessarily impregnating or having sexual relations with these patients or with these inmates.
If the people who have the freedom to leave and come and go as they please, and can bring them treats, can them foods, can bring them things to coerce them, to have relationships with them while they`re in custody. So, these in-custody relationships are not something that`s completely foreign and unheard of in these facilities.
PINSKY: But now, Cheryl, this is kind of a forensic psychiatric hospital. This is not a prison. I`ve been in these hospitals where you -- no matter how you clamp things down, unless it`s a locked facility, which people are in their rights to be out of a locked facility. You know, we can`t restrict people`s rights.
This to me is the same thing as something getting their hands on a gun.
ARUTT: You know, I`m going to go with Danine on this, though. There are people who groom his people who are mentally ill, incredibly vulnerable in a locked facility where they do have limited access, not unlike a prison facility in certain ways and offer them treats or even have assaulted them, and there`s nothing that these inmates or patients in these hospitals can do.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: I don`t know. I`m going to -- I think you`re going to hear with some other -- but Sam, go ahead.
SAMANTHA SCHACHER, SOCIAL COMMENTATOR: OK. I was -- yes, I was naive, Dr. Drew. I was shocked to find out about this. So, what did I do when I heard this story? I Googled psych ward sex. And what I found was alarming. A number of forums of former psychiatric care patients who talked about their sexcapades, and it is so common to the point where, why don`t we offer or administer some sort of birth control, because it is happening.
JENNY HUTT, ATTORNEY: Exactly! Exactly! Exactly!
PINSKY: That is my question. That is the -- if this woman is not safe to be around children -- and Cheryl, you agree with this, it`s probably a postpartum psychosis or --
PINSKY: -- depression with psychosis. She was disconnected from reality. I`ll explain to you after the break what she was thinking at the time. And I know Danine will have take issue -- with any of this. But be that as it may, the fact is she shouldn`t be around kids. She shouldn`t be allowed to have kids. She shouldn`t within her rights to ever think about having kids. She should be give some sort of implant that makes he not pregnant.
PINSKY: OK. Taking a break. If you have a question for the "Behavior Bureau," you can tweet us @DrDrewHLN #behaviorbureau.
And later on, we`re going to talk about a reality show star who takes his own life. His mother is going to join us exclusively to discuss his history of mental illness and why there, once again, the ball was dropped.
PINSKY: Back with my co-host, Jenny Hutt, and the "Behavior Bureau," Sam, Cheryl, Danine, and Valorie tonight. And we are discussing a mom who had killed her three children, drowning them in the bathtub, slitting their throat. She was ultimately sentenced to a psychiatric hospital where she now has become pregnant.
Now, she clearly, as we said in the last segment, had what`s called a postpartum either depression, which is a severe depression oftentimes, sometimes with psychosis. We were talking about this story with the woman who drove her car into the White House in the capitol building last week and was shot versus a postpartum psychosis which is where people often become wildly psychotic.
And by the way, if you had a postpartum depression or a postpartum psychosis, you`re more likely to have it again the next pregnancy. So, more reason this woman should be getting some sort of birth control. It`s going to happen again. And in psychosis, people do dangerous things.
In this case, Jenny, I`m going to you, but I want you to know that she was in a delusion where she believed that her children were going to have fatal effects of voodoo so she had to save them by killing them.
HUTT: Well done. OK, but Dr. Drew, I just wanted to go back to what Valorie said before about everyone had dropped the ball. And you`re right, but probably the biggest drop was the state.
The state knew that these children were in harm`s way and did nothing, and that was why the father was then awarded death benefits in the range of like $300,000, which is why he got the phone call now about this new baby, because the mother wants some of the money from the death benefits, because the state was negligent.
That said, I don`t think she deserves a thing and should be sterilized and her vagina should be sewed shut.
PINSKY: Valorie, go ahead and react. Jenny is going -- I just say let`s keep the guns away and --
PINSKY: -- control in. Just saying. Just saying. Go ahead. But you, ladies, are you know, you have strong feelings.
VALORIE BURTON, LIFE COACH: Birth control will do fine, but, you know, someone needs to go to jail. If this was not another patient, who was it that entered the room? Who was it that was having sexual relations? This is a really important question. And also, this little baby, you know, where is she? Is she with a family that`s going to take care of her?
BURTON: Who`s looking after her? I mean, her three siblings have already died? These are the really important questions that need to be answered.
PINSKY: And Cheryl, what is going on now where people`s rights are taking precedent over sanity, frankly?
ARUTT: Well, I -- I think that -- I think there`s something here that I just -- I wanted to respond to in terms of another very famous case of Andrea Yates who also had psychotic postpartum depression and also drowned her children in the bathtub, thinking she was protecting them from something. What`s so heartbreaking and I want people to understand about these things is that these very often -- they`re not bad people.
They`re people who get so sick that they lose touch with reality. And what was heartbreaking about Andrea Yates, for example, was that after this tragedy happened and she was in a hospital, when they give her medication so she would get back in touch with reality and she start to get better, she`d realize what she had done, and the magnitude of that would sent her spinning back into a psychotic depression.
This is heartbreaking for people. And this woman needed to be protected. And now, this baby needs to be protected from its own mother.
PINSKY: Right. I think you`re making a the point that another aspect of Valorie`s point, which is that that the mental health community has failed her by not properly treating her. The obstetrical community failed her by not treating her. Sam, you had a comment?
SCHACHER: Yes. I wanted to actually ask you, Dr. Drew and Cheryl, is there anything -- are you aware at all, when you`re suffering from postpartum depression or this mental illness, I don`t even know the term, is she aware -- should she had been responsible to go sought treatment, and because she didn`t seek treatment, then is she to blame for still murdering her children?
PINSKY: It`s a really interesting question. We don`t know the details of the extent to which she was under care. Yes, the patient has some responsibility, but listen, these things get so fast and so furious and disconnect people from reality so severely that at a certain point they aren`t responsible. Cheryl, you agree?
ARUTT: Absolutely do, yes.
PINSKY: Yes. Now, Danine, take us back to reality here. I know you rip us out of our conversation.
DANINE MANETTE, CRIMINAL INVESTIGATOR: No, I`m not. I just want to know why these voices never tell anybody to do anything good. They always tell you to do bad things --
PINSKY: That`s the nature of delusions. No, listen, that`s the nature of delusions.
MANETTE: How come they never say to do anything positive?
PINSKY: Well, they, sometimes, will say I`m Jesus and I believe I`m able to transmit thoughts into people`s heads --
BURTON: The good stuff doesn`t show up on the news.
PINSKY: Don`t show up on the news, Valorie, but they usually -- it`s a dysphoric state. It`s a negative state. Even when it`s manic, they come severely agitated, they throw their clothes off and start self-stimulating and weird stuff that becomes eventually dysphoric.
PINSKY: Go ahead, Danine.
SCHACHER: Go ahead.
MANETTE: It seems like families really don`t have the tools. A lot of families aren`t noticing what`s going on and how serious it is. And that seems like a disconnect there. The family is not understanding just how bad it is and what could possibly happen to the children.
PINSKY: Yes. Yes. That`s right.
ARUTT: Or they do and they don`t know what to do or where to go.
PINSKY: Danine, last word.
MANETTE: Yes. I know that there`s constitutional things that keep people from getting sterilized and all that, but I don`t understand why a birth control pill cannot be part of her daily regimen of medication --
PINSKY: That`s right. That`s my thing. That`s common sense.
MANETTE: I don`t understand that.
MANETTE: That`s the impetus for the problem.
PINSKY: I want to ask, Valorie, there is a disconnect between the African- American community and mental health. There`s a certainly distrust that`s well-founded because of having been ill-served over many, many decades. Do you feel that that`s part of where this got through the cracks?
BURTON: You know, I don`t know this family in particular, obviously. But you`re right, and I think it`s also in the church as well. African- American community tends to be very connected within the church. And a lot of times, there`s a major stigma around mental illness and getting help.
And it`s so important to understand, you know what, if I have a broken arm, no one is going to say anything about me going to a doctor, they expect me to go to the doctor. If something is wrong with a loved one, you need to talk to a psychologist or psychiatrist.
BURTON: Ask for help.
PINSKY: Yes. This is it for the viewers, stop treating things below your neck differently than things above your neck. That`s all I`m saying or even above your eyebrows if you want to be that specific. Thank you, guys.
Up next, a reality star commits suicide. Another mental health issue through the cracks, 72 hours ago. His mom is here. She`s on a mission. She will tell you what that mission is when she joins us exclusively next. We`ll be right back.
PINSKY: Time again for "Behavior Bureau." I`m back with my co-host, Jenny Hutt, Samantha, Cheryl, and Danine. Join us, Joshua Marks, a reality TV star and runner-up in the cooking competition, "Master Chef" died last week from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Twenty-six year-old had struggled with mental illness. He recently appeared in a public service video for a suicide awareness organization called Make a Sound Project. Have a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSHUA MARKS, MASTERCHEF SEASON 3 RUNNER UP: So, um, I`m out here with Make a Sound Project. It`s an organization for suicide awareness. It promotes to use of, you know, how to use music as a different alternative to the crazy thoughts that you may have going on in your mind.
And me, personally, I have bipolar disorder. So, I get a little anxious sometimes, and I know to -- is I listen to music and just listen to the words and just relax.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Joshua`s mother, Paulette Mitchell joins us now for her first television interview since her son`s death. And Paulette, this is a new wound for you. Our hearts go out to you, the entire panel -- on behalf of the entire panel, I mean, just so, so sorry. How are you?
PAULETTE MITCHELL, MOTHER OF JOSHUA MARKS: I`m hanging -- it`s -- sometimes it`s unreal, but, you know, I had spoke to Joshua just before his passing, and I told him, "Josh, you know, you`re such a beautiful and amazing person." I have such amazing honorable young man to have been a mother to. And I told him that, you know, whatever he has, if he`s bipolar, schizophrenic, I have it too. I`m in this together with him.
I do not judge, and I`m with him, and we`re going to win this battle. And I had told him that he can use his celebrity status from the show of "Masterchef" to be a spokesperson through his passion for cooking and also for mental illness, which he started to do with the Make a Sound Project, the video that you just aired.
PINSKY: And Paulette, my understanding is he got his hands on a gun. Once again, you know, gun violence in the hands of somebody who is not in their right mind or having good judgment that day, that`s all it takes.
MITCHELL: Yes. Unfortunately, you know, we live in a city where those items are easily available, but at this time, I`m not going to speak any more on that. That`s up to the police investigation.
PINSKY: Yes. I know. I understand. That`s another issue. But let me ask my panel if they have questions for Paulette. Who would like to ask her question. Sam, go ahead.
SCHACHER: Paulette, I want to know if you feel that reality television and his fame helped contribute or even heighten the symptoms of his mental illness?
MITCHELL: Well, you know before September 2012, Josh would never appear to show any signs of mental illness. In September 2012, after the end of the show, he started to have anxiety attacks. Josh was newly diagnosed as of this year, January 2013. And, he was just appearing to come to terms with his diagnosis.
I think maybe, you know, the stress he experienced from the reality show had a definite effect on his mental well-being. Unfortunately, you know, reality shows, they don`t prepare you for any transition back into your normal day-to-day life, and that`s the struggle that Joshua was dealing with. You know, he`s a tall, beautiful person.
And, he was dealing with being recognize the as a celebrity everywhere he went. I`m -- I`m with my son a lot, and he used to tell me, "Mom, I`m a celebrity," and I was like, oh, "you`re just my Josh. You know, I`m thinking he`s just my Josh, but more and more I`m out there with him and seeing how people of all races, creeds and colors and ages would recognize him and the kindness and gentleness of his heart that he showed to them.
It became a toll for him to be recognize and not have a transition back into his day-to-day life.
PINSKY: Paulette, I`m going to interrupt. I`ve got to take a quick break. We`re going to keep this conversation going. We`ll be right back.
PINSKY: And we are back with Jenny Hutt, my co-host, and the "Behavior Bureau." Also with us, Paulette Mitchell. Her son, Joshua Marks, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound just on Friday. Twenty-six-year-old "Masterchef" finalist had struggled with mental illness for a very short period of time. Paulette, he was 7 feet, two inches tall. Josh was known as the gentle giant.
And so, I have a question for you. Did anyone ever bring up the condition called gigantism, which is caused by a pituitary tumor and is associated with a high degree of mental illness? Was that ever talked about?
MITCHELL: No, not in my family. I`m pretty tall myself. I`m six feet tall.
PINSKY: It may just be his height. I understand it, but it`s just occurred. Boy had mental illness and he was really tall. This thing called gigantism can put people at risk for that, but no, they never brought that up, huh?
MITCHELL: No, not throughout his medical history. I have never heard of anything like that associated with mental illness. Earlier in Josh`s childhood, he was known to have heart murmurs, but I -- never have thought about him connected that height. Like I said before, I come from a very, very tall family, and being over six feet and seven feet was pretty common, and we haven`t had any issues.
PINSKY: OK. There you go. Cheryl?
ARUTT: Paulette, Josh was such a special young man. I know that he was just adjusting to a bipolar disorder agnosis, and then just recently he had a change where someone else diagnosed him with schizophrenia. You may be aware that there`s been a history of Black men in particular being misdiagnosed with schizophrenia when they actually had mood disorders.
ARUTT: And I was wondering whether you think that the change of diagnosis had affected him? Was he struggling with that? Was that something he was having a hard time with?
MITCHELL: Yes. When I picked him up from the hospital from his outpatient treatment program on Thursday, he showed me the papers. He said, mom, they`re wrong. I`m not schizophrenic. And, unfortunately, when I spoke to his doctor, when she called to give me her condolences, I told her that, and she said, no, I didn`t change Joshua`s diagnosis. I have him still diagnosed as bipolar with psychosis.
PINSKY: He misconstrued psychosis and schizophrenia, I bet you? he misconstrued those --
MITCHELL: No, he didn`t screw the words up.
MITCHELL: Let me finish telling the story.
MITCHELL: So, she said, well, the doctor -- I`m talking to his psychiatrist who treated him. She said I`m going to look in the computer right now, and she said -- I said because his discharge paper gave him a diagnosis of schizophrenia, and it had information on what to do if you`re -- if you have schizophrenia.
MITCHELL: And so, she said -- OK.
PINSKY: Paulette, I`m sorry, we are up against the clock here. And so, they really had just misdiagnosed him and gave him the wrong papers. Is that accurate?
MITCHELL: That`s very accurate, because that was verified by the doctor who gave him his initial diagnosis.
PINSKY: We are so, so sorry, but thank you for joining us. We have to go to break.
PINSKY: Well, a lot of emotional material tonight on the show. Thank you to our guests. Jenny`s vaginal cerclarge carried the day on Twitter. "After Dark" starts right now.