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LEGAL VIEW WITH ASHLEIGH BANFIELD
Day 3 of Martin McNeill Trial; Alan Dershowitz Leaving Harvard; Cee Lo Green Arrested
Aired October 22, 2013 - 11:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): But perhaps the most chilling, this warning to her daughter, which the judge has ruled inadmissible in court.
ALEXIS MACNEILL, DAUGHTER OF MARTIN MACNEILL: My mother told me -- I was helping her wash her hair, and she said, Alexis, if anything happens to me, make sure it wasn't your father.
BANFIELD: Within weeks of Michele's death. Her clothes were moved out and Gypsy Willis was moved in. She was called the new nanny. But one of MacNeill's daughters says Gypsy didn't cook, clean, or care for kids. The couple traded hundreds of text messages even during Michele's funeral, where Gypsy was seated nearby.
McNeill says there's no way he killed his wife. He was at work and there's no way he killed his wife. And the first autopsy backs his case, saying that Michele died of a heart condition.
But while the jury hears the case, the doctors' life is crumbling. His daughter thinks he's a murderer. His son committed suicide. Other kids were disinherited. All as prosecutors seek to lock him away for good.
BANFIELD: And day three of testimony is happening right now in Provo, Utah. That's where Jean Casarez is covering the case and standing by live.
Get me up to speed on today.
JEAN CASAREZ, HLN LEGAL CORRESPONDENT: Extremely important testimony has just come down in that courtroom because the first responders are in the bathroom now and in the master bedroom. The first words that Dr. Martin MacNeill said to them -- first police officer said he asked what happened. Martin MacNeill said I found her slumped over into the tub. Ashleigh, that means that her face is in, her body is out. That's contrary to every single neighbor and her youngest daughter, how they found her in the tub. Now the fire chief said that Dr. MacNeill said to him, she slipped and fell in the tub. She overdosed on medication. Prosecutors will say, how would he know that?
BANFIELD: And just what about all of that yelling? As they are trying to save her, he's in the bathroom making all sorts of bizarre statements. What are they saying about that? CASAREZ: They're saying he's yelling and cursing and screaming and saying, I've been a good member of our church and I have paid my money and now you do this to me? They say they had to remove him from the bedroom scene at one appointment. And then when they got to the hospital, the E.R. personnel had to bring security because of how he was acting.
Here's something that's also important. Up until this point in time, Dr. MacNeill and neighbors were doing CPR. Prosecutors saying he never was doing CPR. When law enforcement, EMS got to the scene and they started doing it, she suddenly started to turn pink in color. There was gurgling in her lungs for the very first time. She started to ex-spell liquid. And the first responding officered said, it went all over inside his plastic glove and boot and all over his pants. And that means that her circulatory system was going again. It never did that when Dr. Martin MacNeill was performing CPR.
We want to get the other side. The defense is saying, wait a minute, you never said, responding officer, in your initial police report, that Dr. Martin MacNeill said to you that he found her slumped over in the tub. You never said that so close in time to when all of this happened, and you were questioned in front of other officers. And that influenced your testimony today.
BANFIELD: There's going to be some very skilled cross-examination in the courtroom.
Jean Casarez, excellent work. Keep us posted on that. Thank you for that.
And speaking of really amazing cases, there is one attorney and law professor who can honestly say he's just been seen it all. His name is Alan Dershowitz. And I know you know him. He's just releasing this book, "My Life in the Law. And can I tell you, his book read like the who's who of the law. He's going to sit down with me and talk about what's in it and some astounding revelations, like did O.J. do it? That's coming up in a moment.
Also, a celebrity scandal. Music star, Cee Lo Green, accused of slipping a woman a drug and taking her back to her hotel room. But what happened next is still a big unanswered question.
BANFIELD: My next guest is as recognizable as some of the famous people he's defended, people like Bill Clinton and Mike Tyson and Patty Hearst and Klaus von Bulow and O.J. Simpson, and the list would take days to complete because he's been teaching for 50 years and practicing for that long. In fact, he has taught roughly 10,000 of the brightest law students in the world at Harvard Law School.
He's stepping away from the lectern and Professor Alan Dershowitz joins me now to talk about why -- sir, why would you leave this when your own children say you're making a terrible mistake?
ALAN DERSHOWITZ, ATTORNEY: You live your life in stages. And it's time to do other things. I love New York. I love Florida. I want to do some more litigation.
DERSHOWITZ: I've done a lot of teaching. Oh, I'm not retiring, I'm just stopping teaching.
BANFIELD: If you're going to buy this book for one thing, you've got to buy it for the back cover. If you read it, it alternates between those who weighed in on your book. Loving you, hating you, loving you, hating you.
Loving you and hating you.
DERSHOWITZ: I love my enemies list. I'm proud of who my enemies are. Jimmy Carter, I never, I'd never read Alan Dershowitz. Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, they do. I love the enemies. And I'm controversial. And I want people to know when these read this book it's going to see controversial. They're love it or they'll hate it because it's provocative. And there's no false humility here. I take credit in what I did. I don't believe in false humility. I've had a big impact on the First Amendment and how murder cases are tried by the use of science.
BANFIELD: We just aired a story on Facebook today where they decided that it's OK to put beheadings on Facebook where 13 year olds surf, as long as they're not being celebrating.
DERSHOWITZ: The Supreme Court would probably uphold that. But it sounds like bad judgment to me. It sounds like there's a special place that you have to go to and click past various things --
BANFIELD: 13-year-old can do all of that.
DERSHOWITZ: I know. I don't think --
BANFIELD: Honestly, I had access to it today. I couldn't even do it myself. I could not watch that video of the woman being murdered, live.
DERSHOWITZ: As a criminal lawyer, many, many murder cases -- I've had 36 murder cases I've described in this book, I've had a look at some of those horrendous pictures of murders and then I've had or defend the people who have accused of doing it.
BANFIELD: Thank you for bringing that up. O.J. Simpson, hello. The prime minister of Israel, when he was -- (LAUGHTER)
-- Benjamin Netanyahu asked you in his private quarters where he thought he had your hear so quietly, did O.J. do it?
DERSHOWITZ: And my response was, does Israel have nuclear weapons?
DERSHOWITZ: And B.B. said, I can't tell you that. I said, ah, ha. I can't tell you that.
You know, I have lots of anecdotes. 50 years, you get to meet a lot of people, Marlon Brando -- Bobby Fisher I turned him down because he wouldn't play chess with my son.
BANFIELD: What happened when you asked him to play chess?
DERSHOWITZ: He said I'm not a circus performer. I don't play chess with young people. I only play chess with champions. I said, I'm not a circus performer. I don't' represent ingrates for free.
BANFIELD: What about Marcia Clark. There's this old, legendary story --
DERSHOWITZ: It's true.
BANFIELD: Oh, come on.
DERSHOWITZ: It's true. I checked with it her.
BANFIELD: So for those who don't know, there's a legendary story that's been out there for a long time that right before you were about to get up and --
DERSHOWITZ: No, it was before Johnny Cochran was about to --
BANFIELD: Right before he was about to get up and do closing arguments in O.J.'s case, she leaned over and whispered, I'm not wearing any underwear?
DERSHOWITZ: Yes. And I want you to think about that while you make your argument. So I called it on the phone, and I said, Marcia, that can't be true. And she said, it is true. And I said which part of it --
DERSHOWITZ: -- that you're not wearing underwear or that you told that, and she said, that you'll never know.
BANFIELD: So she wouldn't answer that question? DERSHOWITZ: She wouldn't answer that question.
BANFIELD: And Klaus von Bulow, the real story?
Klaus von Bulow was so interesting. It was my first big science case. They claimed he injected his wife with insulin. We were able to prove that the needle had never been injected into a human body that the readings were false positive.
BANFIELD: Everything felt there was something about him.
DERSHOWITZ: I know.
BANFIELD: How did you feel about him?
DERSHOWITZ: I don't judge my clients. I'm part of legal system. I don't make friends with my clients.
DERSHOWITZ: My idea of case is you have to win the case, you have to do everything in your power to do it, if you have to use science, use everything available. And I challenge my readers. Read the story of O.J. Simpson. Read the story about the Klaus von Bulow case, and you tell me how you would have voted if you were a juror.
BANFIELD: I will never agree with you on O.J. Simpson. But you are so much smarter than I am.
BANFIELD: Out of my 25 years-plus in this business, I've interviewed you many, many times. I hope you're not giving that part up.
DERSHOWITZ: Absolutely not.
BANFIELD: Nice to have you. Hope you'll come back.
DERSHOWITZ: Thank you.
BANFIELD: And we didn't even touch on Ted Cruz. Is that even in the book? Did you get that part in the book?
DERSHOWITZ: No. But Ted was one of the best students I've ever had. I've now challenged him to a debate on CNN, old teacher, the young student, let's see if he responds.
BANFIELD: I would love to moderate that. If Piers Morgan gets that, I want to be in the audience.
Alan Dershowitz, thanks for being here.
DERSHOWITZ: Thank you.
BANFIELD: You look great. And good luck with retirement.
DERSHOWITZ: Thank you.
BANFIELD: If you can stand it.
DERSHOWITZ: I'll try.
BANFIELD: Thanks for coming in.
I've got a couple of other stories. In fact, we are learning new details about the middle school student who shot two students and a teacher in Nevada yesterday. The police chief there says that child was 12 years old. Killed a teacher, he wounded two other 12 year olds yesterday before turning the gun on himself and killing himself. Police are expected to give an update on this story at 1:00 eastern time.
Also, a woman is suing Hooters for discrimination over her hair color. Karen Johnson says she showed up to work with blond highlights in her hair. And then a few months later, she was fired for what the company deemed was her, quote, "improper image." Johnson says there were all of lower employees of other races with colors in their hair. For their part, Hooters, is not commenting on the story.
Incredible video of a woman in Summerville, Massachusetts, who looked like she jumped off a subway platform and onto the tracks. But she may have been sleepwalking after she dozed off on a bench. You can see a crowd of people came onto the platform to help pull out her out before the trains came. Fortunately, they had the time. The trains weren't anywhere near the station at the moment she went onto the tracks.
The celebrity known for his hit song, "I Can Only Say Forget You," -- even though that's not really what the lyrics are -- is now facing very serious legal problems. Cee Lo Green is pleading not guilty to a charge of -- the accusation of slipping ecstasy in a woman's drink. But that's not where the accusations end, though you may not hear them in the court room. Panel discussion coming up next.
BANFIELD: As much as you like that song, and I know you like that song, the singer behind it, Cee Lo Green, is facing very serious charges for allegedly slipping ecstasy to his date. She says it went a lot further than that, and accusing him of sexual assault. The prosecutors say there's not enough evidence for a rape charge but there is court about to happen.
Nischelle Turner has the story.
NISCHELLE TURNER, CNN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A few hours before "The Voice" hit the airways Monday night, one of the coaches appeared before a real-life judge in a Los Angeles courtroom on a felony charge.
UNIDENTIFIED JUDGE: Your preliminary hearing will be within 30 calendar days of November 20th.
TURNER: Cee Lo Green pleaded not guilty to one felony count of furnishing a controlled substance to a 33-year-old female last year.
The woman claims that he slipped her ecstasy as they dined in a downtown L.A. restaurant and took advantage of her in a hotel room.
The prosecutors declined to charge Cee Lo with rape of an intoxicated person, citing insufficient evidence. A move that seemed encouraging to the entertainer as he walked into the courthouse Monday.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Are you still a little scared though?
CEELO GREEN, MUSIC STAR: I don't know.
TURNER: His attorney, Blair Burke, issued a statement saying, "Mr. Green encouraged a full and completed investigation of those claims and he was confident, once conducted, he would be cleared of having any wrongful intent and it would be established that any relations were consensual."
TURNER: But as "The Voice" enters the battle round for contestants, Cee Lo still faces a battle for his freedom. If convicted on the drug charge, he faces up to four years in prison. For now, he's free on $30,000 bail.
BANFIELD: And Nischelle Turner joins me live now.
Could have sworn I saw him on the show last night. But is NBC saying anything about this?
TURNER: They're not commenting right now on his future on the show. But what we did see, we did see him there last night but have to note those shows were taped several months ago. The live shows don't start for another couple weeks. We'll continue to see him for the time being on the show going forward.
BANFIELD: Sometimes that makes the ratings even bigger.
Nischelle, stand by that thought for a moment.
I want to bring in legal voices on this, CNN legal analyst, Danny Cevallos, as well as criminal defense attorney, Heather Hansen. Nischelle Turner is going to stand by, as well.
Danny, let me start with you.
The fact the ecstasy charges goes forward but the rape charge does not, they cite there's not enough evidence. We don't have the any information on this case. What essentially might that mean?
DANNY CEVALLOS, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY & CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Something is strange with this case and here's why. This involves a witness that the prosecution ultimately felt was not credible. Yet, they're proceeding on a drug possession charge. In California, possession-plus furnish, equals felony. They don't have any seize you're because it's been digested and they don't have any other evidence other than this person's testimony, who they don't believe. I have to believe this is a case that I would take to trial.
Heather, I have to hear your take.
HEATHER HANSEN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: There has to be a smoking gun. There has to be a witness, a videotape. Everything's videoed these days. There has to be some sort of audiotape. As Danny said, it's a credibility issue. She lost on the credibility be with regard to the sexual assault.
BANFIELD: Know what's amazing? Nischelle Turner can't get to sleep at might for the number of cases she has to cover of celebrities. It makes me wonder when you have a he said, versus she said and not a lot of other evidence to back it up, are the authorities less likely to go after a celebrity because it is so much more punishing to them just to be accused?
HANSEN: I don't think so.
HANSEN: I think here, they may be more likely to pursue the ecstasy charge because they don't want to have the accusation against them.
BANFIELD: How about the rape?
HANSEN: They weighed that carefully. I think there's been talk they were in a relationship preceding this situation, and those types of things, it's very difficult to prove.
BANFIELD: If I had a dime for every time somebody said they were in a relationship -- you can be raped by your husband.
Danny, that's why I say if it's he said and she said and nothing else, no rape kit, no evidence, no background, months until it's reported, is that still not enough to go forward with a case. Because I've seen it happen elsewhere.
CEVALLOS: That's when you're talking about sex assault crimes. That charge is now gone. We're dealing only with a drug possession case.
BANFIELD: That's why I'm asking. Why didn't they charge it?
CEVALLOS: Based on -- because in a case like a sexual assault case, if law enforcement feels their witness is not going to be good for them, remember, like you said, it's he said, she said. If she or he, whoever the complaining witness is not credible, that is a huge part of your case. The burden is beyond a reasonable doubt. If the prosecution believes they cannot make their case, the honorable thing to do is withdraw.
BANFIELD: Nischelle, this it is awful for Cee Lo. He is innocent until proven guilty. But when there's an allegation made and you end up on the CNN with these kinds of things associated with your name, it's troublesome. Is he or his publicist saying anything?
TURNER: That's a good question. He's not saying anything right now. He has commented on this case in the past because this happened apparently back in 2012. He's done other interviews to say that he thought these claims were baseless and untrue and that he was going to fight them. So we'll have to see what happens.
BANFIELD: More to come.
Thank you all, Danny Cevallos, Heather Hansen and Nischelle Turner. Nice to see you all.
I'm glad we all got the gray and burgundy memo.
Something you don't hear an often. Coming up next, a Florida police officer making news because he helped a shoplifter. Don't freak. There is an amazing and fabulous twist to the story. Trust me. Coming up.
BANFIELD: A single mother caught shoplifting. But instead of simply arresting her, a Miami-Dade police officer did something extraordinary. The officer -- I said it was a man earlier. It's a woman. A female officer named Vickie Thomas stopped Jessica Robles as she walked out of a grocery store with $300 worth of stolen groceries.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JESSICA ROBLES, HELPED BY OFFICER, She came out and asked you, do you even have food at the House and I looked at her, and I told her, no, I don't.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BANFIELD: She did charge Robles with a misdemeanor but also bought the woman $100 worth of groceries. The only condition the officer set, once Robles gets on her feet, the officer wants her to pay it forward to someone else. Something else, isn't it? A knucklehead move or what?
A former Boy Scout leader pushes over an ancient boulder in a state park in Utah. You've seen the video. Oh, please. He says it was loose and that it had to fall anyway. I don't know why all the cheering. Glenn Taylor has been booted by the Boy Scouts. We've found out, in the September, he launched a disability lawsuit saying he suffered serious and permanent debilitating injuries from a 4-year- old car crash. The woman involved in that accident says she hopes this lawsuit will now go away, because I don't know, the proof might be in the video? Some little kid wasn't walking down there, and that was, I don't know, a few million years old.
Sergeant Kelvin Munoz -- remember that name. Because he's been in Afghanistan for 10 months, since last December, and decided to do something for his mom when he came back. This is the kind of video you can't stop watching and get your Kleenex because he went to her workplace at Sam's Club on Friday and watch how it turned out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Oh, my god! Oh, my god.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BANFIELD: Kelvin Munoz, I love you, man. And you know what? So does your mother.
Oh. I can barely watch those videos.
Thank you for watching everyone. AROUND THE WORLD starts now with Suzanne Malveaux.