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JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Doctor `Yelling, Angry, Agitated` as Wife Died; Is Girl Found with Gypsies an Abducted American Girl?

Aired October 22, 2013 - 19:00:00   ET

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


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Tonight, stunning new testimony as a handsome, wealthy, prominent doctor who was also -- get this -- a lawyer and a Sunday schoolteacher, goes on trial for murdering his wife. It never fails. When they look that perfect on the outside, chances are they`re hiding a bleep load of toxic secrets. You know what I mean.

Prosecutors say the doctor was a con man and a cheater who drugged and drowned his beauty-queen wife so he could be with his mistress, Gypsy, who he then trotted into the family home as the new nanny. Did I mention the couple had eight kids, four of them adopted?

Today, stunning testimony about this doctor`s screaming theatrics as his wife lay dying. Was he genuinely upset, or was he just acting? Bad acting. Even his 911 call sounds like something out of a bad soap opera. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Department?

MARTIN MACNEILL, ON TRIAL FOR MURDER: I need an ambulance.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. What`s the problem sir? Sir, what`s wrong?

M. MACNEILL: My wife`s fallen in the bathtub.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Who`s in the bathtub? Who`s in the bathtub?

M. MACNEILL: My wife.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is she conscious?

M. MACNEILL: She`s not. I`m a physician.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, sir. Sir, I need you to calm -- sir, I can`t understand you. OK? Can you calm down just a little bit?

MACNEILL: I need help.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your wife is unconscious?

M. MACNEILL: She is unconscious. She`s underwater.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you get her out of the water?

M. MACNEILL: I cant. I let the water out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s under the water?

M. MACNEILL: She is out of the water now. I need an ambulance.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Is she breathing at all?

M. MACNEILL: She`s not.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, sir, the ambulance has been paged. They`re on their way, OK? Do not hang up. What? Sir? (EXPLETIVE DELETED).

GRAPHIC: Dr. MacNeill gave 911 operator the wrong address.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police department. We got a distress caller from 305 Milford. Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, we do.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All we could get was 305 Mill Creek. I don`t know what it was. It may have been a medical, I think. It was something - - something about his wife.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oy, vey.

Today, one by one first responders took to the stand to say Dr. MacNeill was just wildly disruptive. Tried to distract them, they thought, as his wife took her very last breaths. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When I arrived, Mr. MacNeill was on the front doorstep yelling at me. He was very agitated, very angry.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was actually trying to calm him down. I felt that it was quite a scene with him yelling.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: His behavior continued to the point where the E.R. staff was required to call security.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh boy. Straight out to the Lion`s Den. Criminal defense attorney Adam Thompson.

Witness after witness says, oh, he`s over the top. He`s screaming. He`s talking to God: "All that I`ve given to the church and this is what I get, God?" Like some bad biblical movie from the 1960s. But as phony as he sounds, is that really the kind of thing a jury can hang their hat on to convict somebody of murder?

ADAM THOMPSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: It isn`t. Listen, we don`t know how this individual responds to stressful or emergency situations. As you know on your show all the time, Jane, when we`re doing these cases, different people react differently to different circumstances and different things that happen. So that alone can`t be the basis. You have to go by the facts, by forensics.

And I`ll tell you what is important in the case. That you have an autopsy report that said it wasn`t homicide. That first one they did said that maybe it was from heart problems. They did a second one, inconclusive. So that`s going to be more controlling than him reacting a certain way or overacting.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I`ve got a rant for you, and it goes right along with what you`re saying. This case is as slippery as a wet bathtub. You cannot get a conviction, just because a guy is, you know, a jerk, a bad person, a horrible person, a cheater, a bad dad, a very bad actor. Yes, there`s plenty of suspicious circumstances surrounding Michele MacNeill`s death.

But at the end of the day, you`ve got three prosecution forensic experts who do not conclusively say it was homicide. The science of this case is definitely on the defense side. Now, sure, they`re saying he`s acting like a very bad actor. Just like they convicted Casey Anthony of lying, are they going to convict this doctor of being a jerk and nothing more? I`ll throw it to Lisa Lockwood, investigator and author of "Undercover Angel."

LISA LOCKWOOD, INVESTIGATOR/AUTHOR: So let`s listen to the 911 call. What was one of the things that he said to the dispatcher? "She`s underwater. She`s underwater." Two different times she`s underwater.

When police had arrived on the scene and another woman arrived -- the neighbor arrived to say, "I`m going to help her -- get her out of the bathtub." There`s no water in there at that point when she was there. It was a woman hunched over in the bathtub. So how does that even make sense, the initial call, "She`s under water. She`s under water." Right away, that story is sketchy.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree with you. And he also contradicts himself on the 911 call. He says she`s in the tub, underwater, and then the dispatcher says, "Can somebody do CPR," and he`s like, "I`m doing it." That loud. Well, you can`t do CPR if somebody is underwater in a tub. Doing.

Let`s go out to the phone lines. Carol, Indiana, your question or thought. Carol, Indiana.

CALLER: Hi, Jane, how are you?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Good.

CALLER: I would like to make two comments, if I may.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sure.

CALLER: OK. One of them is all those pills that she was on, a lot of those I have been on, however not all at the same time, because my situation probably would have turned out to be like her situation.

No. 2, this lady, Gypsy, was ready to move in this man`s house at the drop of a dime. So disrespectful to go to the funeral. If I were on the jury, I would pray that I could convince the rest of my fellow jurors to vote him guilty for first-degree murder.

And say hi to your animals and everybody. Bye-bye.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, they can do that. The question is we have watched so many of these high-profile cases where everybody sort of feeds on itself, and they say, "The guy is guilty. They have a great case; they have a great case," and then the person is acquitted. We saw it -- Casey Anthony is the most famous example.

I think the reason why Jodi Arias was convicted is that prosecutor Juan Martinez outlined down to the second exactly how she killed Travis Alexander. And that`s what this prosecutor needs to do is say how exactly did he, in her opinion, drug her, drag her to the tub, get her underneath the water.

I want to be able to visualize it in my mind, given that it`s a circumstantial case. Now, jurors have already heard the testimony that Dr. MacNeill pressured his wife into getting a facelift she didn`t want, even telling the surgeon that did the procedure, "Please, prescribe my wife more painkillers and sedatives than you normally would."

But when cops arrived as his wife lay motionless in the tub, he cried out the exact opposite. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cursing her for having the surgery, you know, "Why did you do this surgery? I told her not to do it."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was blurting out things like "Why did you have to have this surgery? Why are you on so many medications?"

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Excuse me my language, he referred to "Why did you have to have this (EXPLETIVE DELETED) surgery?"

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Clearly, criminal defense attorney Adam Thompson, none of these witnesses buy this guy`s act, and they all thought he was acting. Again, is there something more that the prosecution can do with that, as opposed to, yes, OK, it`s a passive argument, if you know what I mean, as opposed to "Here`s what he did do."

THOMPSON: It is. You`d always rather have direct evidence than circumstantial evidence. Like you said in the opening, listen, you know, there`s a lot of circumstantial evidence. He had a mistress waiting in the wings, pushing his wife to get a facelift, asking for extra medications, then, you know, taking her home and she`s loaded up with a cocktail of drugs and found in the bathtub. I mean, you can go on and on. Did he really give CPR or not? Was he faking?

I mean, the bottom line is this. They ultimately have to prove that she was killed. It starts with an autopsy report and all the autopsy reports come back as not showing homicide.

And I want to just bring up for a second, you mentioned why Jodi Arias was convicted. She testified in her case. And let me tell you, when a person doesn`t testify and you`re charged as a defendant, a jury doesn`t get to see and hear from you firsthand, it`s all hearsay through other witnesses.

And in that case, once she got on the stand, that prosecution ripped her to sheds and exposed her, and then the jury saw really how crazy she was. That was the end of her. If she didn`t testify, who knows if it would have been the same outcome as Casey Anthony.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: These are the adult daughters who went against their father and actually launched a campaign to get him charged with murder.

Coming up, the prosecution`s star witness, the jury will hear from the defendant`s adult daughter, Alexis. She`s the very one who led the charge, believing that her dad murdered her mom. Check this out.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ALEXIS MACNEILL, VICTIM`S DAUGHTER: I was helping her wash her hair and she said, "Alexis, if anything happens to me, make sure it wasn`t your father." She had suspected an affair.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why would -- Did that come out of -- did that come out of the blue, though? I mean, I can`t even imagine that conversation.

A. MACNEILL: I mean, it was horrifying. I didn`t believe it. I didn`t want to believe it. But it happened. It was just a couple of days later that she was murdered.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I want to believe her. I feel sorry for that woman, and she`s got a lot of courage. But the jury will not hear Alexis testify that her mom warned her if anything happened, "take a look at your dad."

Lisa Lockwood, she`s a great witness. But unfortunately, the judge has ruled out all the most incriminating things she might possibly say.

LOCKWOOD: And unfortunately, that`s the case in this scenario. So what are they going to go on? They`re going to go on circumstantial evidence. But even when you look at the toxicology, why did she have so much in her system? Are they going to try and say that she was trying to kill herself? Is that the scenario that they`re going to try and lay out, because she was depressed and used the husband`s testimony based on that?

When you look at all the different facts coming to this, in the end, first autopsies were inconclusive to any type of foul play. There`s arrhythmia, and then it was relooked at again. So it`s really unfortunate in that scenario.

But the other thing, as far as him delaying the CPR and getting her out of the bathtub and sending the lady away. Let me tell you right now, if you`re in exigent circumstance, you have super human strength. There was nothing that prevented him from getting her out of that tub alone.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I mean, anybody could pull anybody out of a tub. I mean, maybe I couldn`t pull a 400-pound man out of a tub. Even if they`re stopping right -- a man can pull a petite woman out of the tub. That was nonsense. I think that`s one of the best arguments against him.

Heather, Connecticut, what do you got to say? Heather?

CALLER: Hi, Jane, I love your show, and I love what you do.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you.

CALLER: I just have a quick comment. My worry is, in line of the defense, when you go for a surgery, you have to sign a consent. Do you think that the defense has a win-win with that? Because she obviously consented to it. She had to sign a paper to do so.

So my worry is the defense is going to look at that and ask that question: She signed the paper. She wanted a facelift. Nobody pressured her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know, you make a very good point, because there were the first -- some of the first witnesses, the plastic surgeon who performed the surgery and then the doctor who did the pre-op. And they didn`t sell it the way the prosecution did.

They said, you know, she seemed a little ambivalent. He seemed a little excited. But it wasn`t like, "Come here, you`re going to get that surgery whether you want it or not." And there`s a lot of nuances, a lot of gray in this. So we`ll have to see.

By the way, OK, the daughter coming up later this week. Nancy Grace has so much more on this, top of the hour. Now, on the other side, we`re going to talk about this phenomenal, sensational case: mystery Maria found in Greece. Now all sorts of people from Britain to America, parents who don`t have their own kids, whose kids have been abducted, they`re saying, "She`s mine. She`s mine." Are they deluding themselves? Is there another motive? Yes, Baby Lisa, that`s who I`m talking about, the parents of Baby Lisa. Stay right there.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s known only as Maria.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They`re facing charges of abduction of a minor and also falsifying documents.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This Roma family had 14 children in total.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Who are her parents? And why was she found living in a gypsy camp site?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are more questions than answers surrounding this mysterious girl only known as Maria.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Who are her parents and why was she found living in a gypsy camp site.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was bad living conditions.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: DNA tests later confirmed that Maria was not their daughter.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are about 10 cases of missing children that they are looking at very seriously.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Questions are swirling around the identities of other children. The priority for police is to find out who Maria`s real parents are.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight this mystery girl, Maria in Greece, causing an international sensation. And people are coming out of the woodwork here in America. Yesterday, in Britain, they were saying, well, maybe this mystery girl in Greece is Madeleine McCann, the little girl who vanished from her parents` hotel room in Portugal several years ago.

Now tonight they`re saying, "Wait, maybe she`s Baby Lisa from Kansas City." Is this realistic? Is this wishful thinking? Or is this perhaps jumping on an opportunity to distract investigators who are looking closer to home?

Baby Lisa vanished from her Kansas City, Missouri, crib about two years ago. Her mom says she was passed out from drinking a box of wine. Now, they say mystery Maria from Greece bears striking resemblance to Lisa`s age progression photo. Listen to Baby Lisa`s mom.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DEBORAH BRADLEY, MOTHER OF BABY LISA: I see the same facial structure. I see the same eyes. I think the nose looks similar. The pouty lips from the little girl, compared to a picture of Lisa that was taken weeks before she was abducted. She`s in a little leopard outfit and she has her head kind of tilted the same way that little Maria does on this poster. When you put them side by side, it -- it really rocked me to the core.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I feel sorry for that woman. She has been through hell, no matter what the story is, and there is a striking resemblance. There`s only one problem.

Mrs. Irwin, Maria is believed to be two or three years older than your daughter, Lisa, would be. Mom`s even got an explanation for that.

Maria was found during a raid on a community of so-called Romas, otherwise known as gypsies. Cops looking for guns and drugs found this adorable blonde-haired, blue-eyed girl peeking out from under the covers. The people who called themselves her parents claim they adopted her from a girl who couldn`t care for her. But they admit it wasn`t a legal adoption.

Now they`re behind bars charged with kidnapping. Thousands of tips from around the world are pouring in.

Straight out to the Lion`s Den. We`re very honored to have with us tonight, Ed Smart, the father of rescued kidnap victim, or I should say survivor, Elizabeth Smart, a young whom who is amazingly articulate and courageous and has become a living symbol of hope for parents who have seen their children snatched from them.

I`ve got to ask you, Ed. Listen, my heart goes out to Baby Lisa`s mom. Obviously, she`s choked up. But is she just looking for hope or is there a possibility she could be using this case as a way to distract authorities? Because we have to remind people a cadaver dog reportedly hit on the scent of a dead body inside that mother`s bedroom.

ED SMART, FATHER OF KIDNAPPING SURVIVOR ELIZABETH SMART: You know, we don`t know what the bottom line was. You know, certainly, if -- if she wasn`t the reason, you know, that Lisa is no longer with us, I would be keeping that hope out as much as possible. One of the most important things for a parent who is missing a child is to keep that face out there. So if Lisa is still out there, certainly, you know, sometimes especially within a couple of years.

I know I couldn`t believe it when Elizabeth came home. When I first saw her I couldn`t imagine that she should have -- she could have grown as much as she did. So I understand the issue with age difference.

But certainly, DNA is what is going to resolve the issue there. And so, you know, parents who have miss children, they should have their -- their DNA put out there so that law enforcement can match that up against missing children that are found and basically resolve that issue as quickly as possible.

But I think there are so many parents out there that are missing children and infants. I mean I`ve got some great friends, Donna Green, whose child, Raymond, was taken a couple of days after he was born. Donna Teague...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me ask you this. Do you think this could be a child abduction ring operating in Greece?

SMART: I certainly think that there is a possibility. And I wouldn`t try to take away the possibility of a child being found and reunited with their parent, especially when, you know, the DNA isn`t matching and, you know, it`s kind of shady whether, you know, what they`re saying is true. That there wasn`t...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, they`ve given so many different stories.

SMART: Absolutely.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: They`ve given various stories.

And I have to say, Baby Lisa`s mother -- getting back to Baby Lisa Irwin. This is the Kansas City family where this child vanished after the mom drank a box of wine and passed out.

She says she`s got an explanation for how Maria might still be her missing child, despite the fact that these tests show Maria is 5 or 6 years old. That`s two or three years older than Baby Lisa would be. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRADLEY: There`s no way Lisa is that big. And then when I got on the Internet to search for children at age three in the 96th percentile, she very closely matches the height and weight. And that was really what made me start to think this may be Lisa.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Back out to the Lion`s Den. Again, my heart goes out to that woman. Obviously, she`s suffering. She`s got tears in her eye. She`s choking back tears.

But Lisa Lockwood, investigator, do you buy that idea that, oh, she could be Baby Lisa, even though Baby Lisa is two or -- two or three years old?

LOCKWOOD: There`s something called -- yes, there`s something called a median age and, yes, doctors can look chronologically to determine based on height and weight, but again, that`s based on an average. So does that possibility still exist that this child was undervalued in age a year, maybe? Two years might be stretching it.

So I mean, my heart goes out to her. I mean, to have the faith and to hold onto it. But what this is also doing, it`s opening up the whole idea of what this human children trafficking is happening and what`s going on, and it`s instilling hope for all these people out there who think that they have lost their children.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: By the way...

LOCKWOOD: What it`s going to do, it`s going to rise the opportunity for people to start looking. And again, like Mr. Smart said, giving people more hope.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. This video was released by the Roma family saying, "Look, the video shows that we`re good parents and she was loved." But on the other side I`m going to show you a little snippet of them yanking the boy. Wait. Just watch it right now. It`s going to happen right in one second. A little boy runs into the screen. Look what they do to him. Here`s a little boy coming. I`m telling you, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Let`s see. Let`s see. Worth waiting for. Hold it. There`s a little boy. Boom. Look at that. Is that loving?

More on the other side.

By the way, what does hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons have in common with "Real Housewives of Miami" star Joanna Krupa? You won`t want to miss this.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I used to see the mother. She would come to the square here to beg for the child. At one point I`d asked her how she got such a blond angel. She told me she conceived him with a blond hair gentleman.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): It isn`t fair, to be honest. The woman had the child since it was very young. She raised it. She had not stolen it. A Bulgarian woman gave it to her.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. That woman seen there with little Maria. That`s little Maria. She`s told a whole bunch of stories about how she got the child. DNA tests have shown that she`s not the biological mother of this child. So that`s very suspicious.

The other thing that`s suspicious is they found a whole bunch of birth and baptism records, and this woman says she gave birth to six kids in less than 10 months. Not possible. OK. Puppies do that.

Ten of those 14 kids have not been found. So I think it really raises the possibility of some kind of ring. And that`s what authorities in Europe are investigating right now.

Let`s go out to Dara, Arizona. Dara in Arizona, what do you got to say?

CALLER: Hi, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hi.

CALLER: Hi. I was looking at that little girl, and the first person that came to my mind was Natalee Holloway. And, you know, if Natalee really isn`t dead and she was sold into sex slavery, she could have gotten pregnant and they sold her baby. I Googled for images of her, and she looks a lot like her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow, well, Dara, Arizona, I want to say that my mind has just -- just exploded from your speculation. That`s imaginative. It`s a bunch of tragedies, like, wrapped up together.

Ed Smart, you are the father of the survivor of a terrible kidnapping, wonderful Elizabeth Smart, who is one of my heroes. One of the most articulate and courageous young women -- young woman in America.

Did you find, as you become an expert in the subject, that this kind of mystery gives way to a lot of fantasy and conspiracy theories and that, ultimately, with all due respect to Dara, and I`m glad she watches the show, I don`t know if that`s helpful?

SMART: You know, I think that there is an incredible amount of speculation. I remember during those first few weeks that Elizabeth was gone, and there were so many leads that came in. And we had, you know, so many psychics and other people that came forward with ideas. And certainly, if somebody has a legitimate lead or they think they know something, certainly that`s important to put out there.

But, you know, speculation does not help, and it does take away from the valuable time of investigation and trying to find the child that`s missing. So I would certainly ask those that are, you know, truly kind of speculating, you know, don`t speculate. If you know of something or if you think that this is possible, that`s one thing. But speculation is -- does not help law enforcement.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And now we`re getting word of a second similar case in Europe this week, this time a 7-year-old blond girl taken away from her Roma family in Dublin, Ireland. Police reportedly took the child because they were suspicious of the documents they were given by the people claiming to be her parents.

Now, I want to go to Adam Thompson, criminal defense attorney. I applaud authorities for obviously looking at a very suspicious situation. This was not just grabbing people off the street. This was in the process of a drug and weapons raid that this child popped out, didn`t look like anybody else in the room.

But I discussed this last night. I also think we`re opening sort of a Pandora`s box and entering dangerous territory when we start looking at kids and saying, in this multi-cultural world, where there`s so many blended families, and there`s so people adopting kids from other ethnic and racial backgrounds. It`s very dangerous, I think, to start looking at people, saying, "Oh, you don`t match, who`s your parent? Oh, are you really their parents? That`s dangerous.

ADAM THOMPSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: That`s a very slippery slope to go down and you don`t want law enforcement overstepping their boundaries and starting to harass really legitimate families where children may be of different background and culture look different. And for that very reason, they go and they start asking questions. I think what we have in Greece is a little bit different because you had this couple with upwards of 14 children where ten they couldn`t account for and of the ten that were, you know, apparently theirs, they couldn`t even give accurate birth dates, birth certificates, claiming that six to eight of them were born within a 10-month period. That honestly doesn`t ring through. And there`s something more to that story. The more to the story is they probably did purchase these kids and who knows for what. But that`s the kind of situation law enforcement needs to be getting in and getting those children back to their right parents.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s mind blowing and it`s -- there`s so many possibilities. My heart goes out to every single parent who is missing a child and I want to thank again, Ed Smart, father of one of my heroes, Elizabeth Smart, for joining us tonight and lending his wisdom. Thank you and I`m so glad that you were doing well and please send my regards to Elizabeth. She`s a wonderful young woman. You did a good job.

I paid a visit to hip hop mogul Russell Simmons house. And he`s calling a brand new film called "Blackfish" a game changer.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I couldn`t understand why intelligent animal would have made the decision to bite the hand that feeds it basically. So I started peeling back the onion and was shocked.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Everybody is shocked by what they learn in this film. With each new truth that I`ve found out there was another shocking revelation just sitting right behind it. The world of animal activists and marine biologist than sea world trainers have known all of these truths, right? For 40 years but the general public haven`t. Once you see it you can`t unseen it. It is a very intense and scary and very sad and tragic story and I just sort of let the story play out.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hey, Little Rico, I spoke with the director of the extraordinarily controversial new movie "Blackfish." A movie "SeaWorld" has condemned as distorted and misleading. "SeaWorld" entire statement is on our website. You can watch CNN and decide for yourself. Mark your calendars, "Blackfish" premiers on CNN this Thursday night at 9:00 p.m. Eastern. This movie is getting bust as a potential Oscar contender. Celebrities like hip hop mogul Russell Simmons talked to me about it and called the global CNN premier a game changer and a milestone, making the issue of animals in captivity a national even worldwide conversation. Hear what Russell says in a second. But first, check this out from the movie "Blackfish."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: The issue was that we stored these whales at night in what we called a module which was 20 feet across and probably 30 feet deep as a safety precaution because we are worried about people cutting than that, letting them go. And the lights are all turned out. So, it really no stimulation. They`re just in this dark metal 20 foot by 30 foot pool for two thirds of their life.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: When we first started they were quite small and quite young so they fit in there quite nicely. But they were immobile for the first part. It didn`t feel good. It was just wrong. We started having difficulty trying getting them all in this one small steel box, to be honest, that`s what it was. It was a floating steel box, that was when food depravation would come in. We would hold back food. And they would know, if they went to module that they would get their food. So, if they`re hungry enough, they were going to go in there. And during the winter, that would be at 5:00 at night until 7:00 in the morning. When you let them out you see this new tooth breaks and sometimes you would see blood.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Closing that door on him and knowing that he`s locked in there for the whole night is like -- to staff, it`s like -- if this that is true, it`s not only, you know, inhumane, and I`ll tell them so, but it probably led to what I think is the psychosis that he was ready to trigger. He`d kill.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hey, Rico. That clip from "Blackfish" talks about how Tilikum the killer whale was treated before he got to SeaWorld at a place called sea land which has sense been closed. Tilikum is the central character in the film "Blackfish." Right now, as we speak, Tilikum is inside SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida. "Blackfish" claims Tilikum has been involved in the death of three people most recently, "SeaWorld" trainer Dawn Brancheau who was killed by Tilikum three years ago sparking a lot of questions about, what happened with this orca in captivity. The movie unfolds like a thriller and a mystery.

Tonight, we`re talk to hip hop mogul Russell Simmons who`s calling for a complete reexamination of the concept of animals in captivity performing for our entertainment.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Ladies and gentlemen.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You say a movie like this is a big thing. Tell me why.

RUSSELL SIMMONS, HIP HOP MOGUL: As an animal rights activist, who watches the suffering of all animals, this movie is a gateway to all of the injustice, to all of this giant comic disaster. People unconscious because they want to be. A movie like this is a wakeup call.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: How do we need to rethink our relationship with animals in captivity?

SIMMONS: We need to realize that these are beings are suffer the same as we suffer, they want freedom the way we want freedom. And we need to grow into our own spirits enough that we can recognize their suffering.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Should theme parks like SeaWorld be shutdown or radically changed?

SIMMONS: They need to shut them (bleep) down. Shut it down. Shut the whole program down, of course. Shut it down as soon as you get a chance and do things to try to undo the injustice.

Of course it`s a form of slavery. Of course it is.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you equate it to human slavery that humans experienced?

SIMMONS: Of course it`s a form of slavery and the suffering is real. Just as humans suffer, animals suffer. They have nervous systems and they`re in pain. I think that all of these kinds of properties should be changed to sanctuaries or other ways to educate kids and help them understand the animal kingdom differently in the way they have in the past. We are at a turning point now. And the earth and its inhabitants are starting to realize that they need each other.

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VELEZ-MITCHELL: SeaWorld officials disagree vehemently and we invited them on to get their side of the story but SeaWorld declined. We also reached out to the following organizations seeking to get the other side, all declined to offer a guest to appear on camera to defend animal theme parks zoos an and aquariums. I am proud to be an animal right advocate. I`m also a journalist and it is important to me to represent both sides of a story. Here`s Dr. Gray Stafford (ph), director of conservation at Wildlife World Zoo and Aquarium.

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UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I wasn`t there and I did not witness Dawn`s demise. I am familiar with the safety protocols at SeaWorld and other institutions including my own and I can tell you that staff safety and animal safety is always a priority.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: SeaWorld did issue a statement about "Blackfish" saying, quote, "The film fails to mention SeaWorld`s commitment to the safety of its sea members and guests and to the care and welfare of its animals, as demonstrated by the company`s continual refinement and improvement to its killer whales facilities, equipment and procedures both before and after the death of Dawn Brancheau. SeaWorld also say that the people interviewed in the documentary were employed years ago and it`s the "Blackfish" director did not include any recent invoice. You can read the full statement at hlntv.com/Jane.

Coming up, "Real Housewives" of Miami star Joanna Krupa brings a fire to "Real Housewives." And now she tells us why she`s so very passionate about speaking after animals that she went naked.

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JOANNA KRUPA, ACTRESS: Because I`ll do anything for the animals and sex sells. And so, we know those controversial ads, for me, I`m a very controversial person when it comes to the animals and what are their way they didn`t go naked for the animals to be controversial. It will get people speaking, it will get the attention out there. I actually just did my own calendar for the animals. That the proceeds will go towards my animal rescue. So, you know, what? I`m here on this earth for the animal to help them and if I have to get naked. I will get naked for the animals.

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UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I`m also a mother who took her kid to SeaWorld. So, I remember that park, I have fond memories of it as a child and I took my kids there.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: When a child sees a killer whale in being closure, at a theme park lake, SeaWorld that it helps the child, or it hurts the child.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: No, you`re a mom.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I tell my kids, what if we never go to SeaWorld again because of what mommy learned from this film? My kids are 100 percent behind it. Because they know, they know that calves are taken from their moms in closures, they don`t want to be entertained by some animal if it`s going to hurt that animal.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jane back with Little Rico again, SeaWorld claims "Blackfish" twists the facts but you can watch CNN and decide for yourself. This Thursday night at 9:00 p.m. Eastern. But "Real Housewives" of Miami Joanna Krupa is thrilled that the world is now talking seriously about what animals in captivity experience and discussing whether captivity inflicts suffering. She says, that very debate is a victory for animals who have no voice to speak for themselves.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: What have you done? (bleep).

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: What have you done?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What turned you into an animal activist?

KRUPA: Someone is abusing them or they`re skinning them alive for a fur coat, they`re not like oh my god, help me. They don`t have the voice to yell, did anybody hear me? Get me out of here. It`s like, they can`t ask for help. That`s why it`s so important for us as human beings to make a change to do something because it`s not fair for an animal to suffer in our expense. If it`s for fashion, if it`s for entertainment, how can anybody look in an animal`s eye and be cruel to it. They have all of the emotions that we as human beings have.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: There`s a lot of debate SeaWorld says, the movie "Blackfish" is misleading and distorted and they`ve denounced the film.

KRUPA: I`m 100 percent for this movie. I want to watch it for myself and maybe learn something that I didn`t know already and to educate other people that have no idea what goes on.

Imagine being stocked in a place for years like you would go -- you would go crazy.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You did go naked for Peta. Why did you do that?

KRUPA: Because I`ll do anything for the animals and sex sells and so, we know those, you know, those controversial ads for me, I`m a very controversial person when it comes to the animals and what other way they didn`t go naked for the animals to be controversial. At first my mother is like, oh my God, I can`t believe that you did this. But she`s super proud of me. And if I have my mom`s blessing, that`s all I care about. I think animals are -- and we as human beings need to speak up for them. There`s so much neglect and torture that goes on to this world and of course I`m going to be their voice. I`ve been their voice for many, many years and I will never give up until the day I die. They need our help.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you think the world is changing when it comes to animal issues?

KRUPA: I think it`s changing for the better but very slowly. Not fast enough. And that`s what`s scary and that is what`s heartbreaking. But people like you, Jane, that`s why I love you and when we met at the human society way back in the day when we were fighting for the farm animals, I just have so much respect for you. And if we had more people like you, yes, the world would be a better place a lot faster. I`m here on this earth for the animal to help them and if I have to get naked. I will get naked for the animals.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Rico tomorrow, TV superstar and animal lover Wendy Williams says she wants to ask animal, how are you doing? And she`s going to tell us why she plans to watch "Blackfish" with her 13-year-old son.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We take our kids to the zoo, we take our kids to the circus and we take our kids to these places where animals are. And it is educational. Like I get it. I get it. But there`s something very unnatural, about an animal that`s supposed to be in the wild being captive and moved across the country. I mean, they need the ocean.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

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VELEZ-MITCHELL: Time for pet of the day. Klai and Bulyt. Oh, you`re like buddy and -- Jax and Callie. They said, we had so much in common, we just like to hang out together. And Janie, well, you and I have something in common. Namely a name. And we both love cats. Jay Jaye. Look at that. Little Jay Jaye. Look at that tongue, look at that nose. So cute.

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VELEZ-MITCHELL: A fire storm of controversy surrounding superstar singer CeeLo Green. Of course, he`s best known as daily judge from NBC`s "The Voice" and that catchy tune, forget you seen here from YouTube.

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But now, the singer is facing very serious allegations a woman claims she and CeeLo went out to dinner last year, and she says, this is her claim, the star`s slipped ecstasy into her drink and the next thins she knew, she woke up naked in CeeLo`s bed. Now CeeLo appeared in court on Monday. Yesterday, he was charged with a felony of furnishing ecstasy. But here`s the thing that makes my blood boiling, I mean, the very serious rape allegation was dropped wallop by the D.A. And I`m wondering, I wasn`t there, he says he`s totally innocent. But why so fast? I mean, why would a man give a woman ecstasy. I don`t know but I think maybe this should go to court first and let the judicial system play out. But no. In and out. Boom.

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VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, slice of happiness, this cat decided to take a water cooler break. Good for you dude. Nancy Grace next with the latest on the McNeill trial.

END