CNN CNN


 

Return to Transcripts main page

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Did Pot-Induced Hallucinations Lead to Murder?; Wild Car Chase of Mother Caught on Video

Aired April 16, 2014 - 19:00:00   ET

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


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We took a killer off the street. A very cold, calculated killer that probably would have killed again if he had not been caught.

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Tonight an unthinkable crime rips through a quiet Denver neighborhood. It`s an unbelievable story. It`s leaving Colorado residents wondering, "Hmm, was legalizing marijuana such a great thing after all?"

A terrified mother of three calls 911 to report her high-on-pot husband is acting very crazy, hallucinating and begging her to shoot him. The mom`s 13-minute-long 911 call ended with a gunshot, a deadly shot to her head. And now her high-on-pot husband is charged with murder.

So why did it take so long for cops to get there? And was her husband`s pot laced with something that made him go really crazy?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Reported a domestic violence in progress.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Seems like a very loving family.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sources say Richard Kirk ate edible marijuana and was hallucinating. He asked his wife to shoot him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know that that wasn`t Richard. Let`s just say that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The husband was smoking marijuana. Advised they do keep a handgun in the house, but it is not in anybody`s possession.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: while Christine was still on the phone with 911, she said her husband had grabbed the gun. She started to scream, and the gunshot was heard.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need an ambulance. We`re going to need homicide.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was a really terrible thing.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Christine Kirk called 911 Monday night to report her husband had ingested pot and was hallucinating. She said he was scaring their three young sons and talking about the end of the world. And then he asked his wife to shoot him with the gun they kept in the safe.

Police are not releasing the victim`s call, but we do have excerpts from the dispatcher. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Her husband has been smoking marijuana. Advised they do keep a handgun in the house, but is not in anybody`s possession.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Police will not tell us how many minutes it took for cops to get there, but it was clearly more than the 13 minutes she was on the phone call with 911.

And when cops eventually did arrive, Christine was dead of a gunshot wound to the head.

Now Richard Kirk, her husband, admitted to officers that he pulled the trigger. Adding to the horror of all this, one of the couple`s young sons witnessed his dad kill his mom.

By all accounts, this was a normal loving family. Did pot, of all things, turn this man into a monster and spark this explosion of violence? You know, it`s not a drug we associate with violent behavior. Look at this guy. Look at the mug shot. OK? Does he look crazy? Could dad have gotten tainted weed that made him hallucinate?

What do you think? Call me: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.

Straight out to KRLD reporter Joe Gomez.

Joe, tell us about this brewing controversy over the length of time it took cops to get to the woman`s home. I`m holding the probable cause statement in my hand and no mention -- a lot of other details, but no mention of how long it took cops to get there.

JOE GOMEZ, KRLD REPORTER: That`s right, Jane, 13 minutes, a stunning 13 minutes was how long she was on the phone with the 911 operator while her husband is ranting and raving, talking about the end of times, hallucinating, allegedly telling his wife that he wanted her to shoot him. And then ultimately finally going to get a gun.

She told the operator they had a gun in the house. While this guy, by all intents and purposes, seems like he`s losing his mind. So why did it take police 13 minutes to finally get to the house, when we finally heard the gunshot on the phone call and his wife is dead, and they find her dead on the floor? Could this have been stopped if they had only gotten there minutes before, Jane? That`s the big question tonight.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know, there`s so many questions, actually. One question I have, if you take a look at this guy`s eyes, you can see the pupils are like just black dots, OK? He looks very dilated. Did police drug test this suspect, this murder suspect for marijuana and any other substances after he was arrested? Now, the investigators are not telling us much at all.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are looking at a marijuana as to (UNINTELLIGIBLE) to see if it did play any role in this particular crime.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hallucinating, talking about the end of the world, asking his wife to shoot her and then allegedly shooting her instead, all sounds like the kind of behavior you`d see from somebody on bath salts or crystal meth, not pot. So I`ve got to ask, was the suspect`s pot laced?

Now, marijuana is newly legal in Colorado, as we all know, and pot retailers are required by law to have their weed checked for purity and potency.

But Howard Samuels, addiction specialist, founder and CEO of The Hills Treatment Center, that doesn`t mean that the suspect couldn`t have gotten his hands on some tainted marijuana. And some reports are suggesting tonight he may have been high on edible marijuana. And I`m wondering, could it be that, as opposed to smoking, he ate so much that he went well beyond a buzz to hallucination?

HOWARD SAMUELS, ADDICTION SPECIALIST: Well, you know what, Jane? That`s exactly my thought also. This is the second violent death in Colorado in the last month due to ingesting marijuana. The other one was a college student, 19 years old, who jumped out of a window after eating a marijuana cookie, OK? So, you know, marijuana edibles create hallucinations, anxiety attacks.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But what is it? What is it? Do you get more...

SAMUELS: It`s more potent and dangerous.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you get more from eating a cookie, or as they used to say back in the day, a hash brownie, than you would from smoking? Is it something where you could really ingest huge quantities, more than you could smoke?

SAMUELS: Well, absolutely. I mean, just think: if you can get high on one marijuana edible, what about if you have ten cookies? That`s ten times as potent. You know, it`s not the same as smoking it.

So you know, you`re setting yourself up for some really horrible results because of what you`re really eating. And this is what Colorado really has to look at, I mean by making this drug legal, which I am totally against, is just horrific.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Listen, January 1, Colorado became the first state in the nation to open recreational pot stores. And we all saw the images of pot smokers lining up around the block to get their hands on some weed. A lot of stores ran out. And proponents were touting, hey, marijuana is safe. It`s safer than alcohol. It`s safer than hard drugs.

But Christine Kirk`s murder puts pot in a new light. It could be the -- well, the second tragedy linked to marijuana since this new law took effect. So you know, was it a mistake, Wendy Patrick, prosecutor, to legalize pot?

WENDY PATRICK, PROSECUTOR: I absolutely think so. And I`ve got to tell you, Jane, it`s true, when I read this story, I thought more PCP, not marijuana.

Nonetheless, the problem with marijuana is we don`t know enough about the way it affects people, as we do with alcohol. We`ve been studying for years, people driving under the influence. How many drinks do you have and drive safely? It`s much harder to prove how pot affects the system.

And that`s why we have all these unanswered questions when somebody ingests it and then behaves erratically. Sure, it could have been laced. I think that -- I think you`re right, that`s very likely. But we don`t know enough about it. I think -- I don`t think it should be legal. I think we`re right to be asking questions about how it affects behavior.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Doctor Dave. Dr. Gabe Crenshaw, psychologist, what say you about legalization?

DR. GABE CRENSHAW, PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, you know, I have been on the fence about it before, but I will say we do know a lot about the effects of marijuana, it causes impairment with motor skills. It affects brain activity. It affects the neuronal pathways, which of course, gets into the prefrontal cortex and things like that, your decision making. That`s one of the reasons why...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want to stop -- I want to stop the panel. We want to -- I want to talk about -- and I apologize, Dr. Gabe, but very briefly. Raise your hand if you think pot should be legal. Honestly...

CRENSHAW: Half a raise. Half a raise.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK, you got half a raise.

Here`s what I have to say. People are going to smoke pot, just like they`re going to drink. Prohibition only increased alcohol consumption. I think that, in fact, the criminalization of cocaine increased cocaine consumption. And I think that legalizing pot is something that is going to take away its glamour and just make it something that people do, and people are going to do it whether it`s legal or not.

Continue on, Dr. Kay (ph).

CRENSHAW: But we don`t have a sophisticated enough system. We don`t have a sophisticated enough drug education system in our country yet. I`m concerned about the children. You legalize -- they`re doing it anyway. We know that. But it does create psychosis. That`s what you`re seeing with Richard, a brief psychotic break, a substance-induced psychosis.

J. GOMEZ: What about alcoholics, though. You hear the same thing with alcoholics. We`ve seen this happen so many times with people that drink alcohol, who ruin their lives. They ruin their jobs. They get in a car wreck, and they kill a family of five or something like that. I mean, who`s to say this guy -- who`s to say this guy didn`t have underlying emotional issues that this may have been triggered?

We do understand that he was arrested for a DUI before this. So maybe he had addiction issues that weren`t just strictly to pot alone. Maybe he had some other things going on, too.

CRENSHAW: Absolutely. You know what?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... normally associate with this kind of thing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let`s go out to the phone lines. Yes, well, Kim, California, what do you have to say, Kim, California?

CALLER: Hi, what I have to say is that we should definitely test his body to see what was in his system. He could have been coming down from alcohol and coke from the night before, No. 1.

No. 2, who`s making these brownies? Was it the government? And do we have, like, what is being put into these brownies?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I find it fascinating that, when you think about legalization of pot, you normally think about somebody smoking a joint. But in fact, if you look at the pot stores and what`s available, and the fact that America`s also a nation of food addicts, let`s face it, so the chance to combine two addictions in one, hey, let`s go for that. Let`s go for the pot cookies so we can gain weight and get high at the same time. I think that, perhaps, they should look at the edible marijuana as the biggest threat. And that`s something that we`ve got to consider, Howard Samuels.

SAMUELS: Well, Jane, 40 percent of all marijuana sales in Colorado are marijuana edibles. OK?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow.

SAMUELS: So they better take a look at this issue quickly before we have more deaths.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Forty percent. So you`re saying almost half of all the people who are buying pot in Colorado are buying it in an edible form, where if they just sit down and binge, thinking, it`s -- well, it`s not that danger, it`s just a cookie, they could end up eating basically a deadly -- they could end up OD`ing. Can you OD on pot?

CRENSHAW: No. You can`t.

SAMUELS: This is where -- this is where people don`t have enough information about this drug, Jane. And this is the real problem, is that you know, by legalizing this drug and mass producing this drug, by legalizing it, you`re mass producing it, you`re going to promote it. It is going to become much more widespread to our nation`s kids, and that`s the crime to me.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you know, we`re an addict nation. We`re the biggest drug consumers on the planet. You can point the finger across the border and say, oh, the criminality there, but it`s really the law of supply and demand. Who`s demanding all the drugs?

And I`m talking pot; I`m talking cocaine; I`m talking heroin; I`m talking over-the-counter and under-the-counter pills. We are. America`s an addict nation.

We`re just getting started on this. And I want to take your calls. Do you think pot should be legal in Colorado in the wake of this murder, allegedly by a husband who was high on pot?

And later, a mom takes police on a wild -- and I mean crazy -- chase with her 5-year-old daughter on her lap. And we`ll tell you why.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pull over. Think of the kid.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just neighborly and friendly and...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Very normal. Very normal. Yes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: A beautiful woman dead, and her husband, this man, accused of shooting her in the head as she is on the phone with 911 for 13 minutes and saying that he`s hallucinating because he ingested pot. This is all happening in Colorado where pot is legal.

And the reports are that he was eating it, which we just heard you can eat large quantities. You can get higher than if you smoke, because you can only smoke it at a certain rate, but you can eat very rapidly, and you can eat a lot.

So let`s go out to the phone lines. Cheryl, California, what do you have to say?

CALLER: Marijuana has been getting a really bad rap. And when I think -- when I see the stories about the marijuana and someone was intoxicated with marijuana, what about being drunk? Does being drunk make you a killer also? And he -- everyone needs to know how much he ingested and what he was given. And pot cannot make you kill, unless you want to say alcohol can make you kill also.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, yes. I think you`re making a very good point. Evangeline Gomez, criminal defense attorney, you know, people commit all sorts of horrific violence drinking, and booze is legal. And so now there`s this one or two terrible incidents of pot-related violence in Colorado, and everybody`s throwing up their hands and saying, "Well, we made a mistake."

EVANGELINE GOMEZ, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You`re absolutely right, Jane. I think the caller had a lot of valid points.

If you look at right before this law was enacted, law enforcement officials, police officers in Colorado, were against it. So I`m wondering if police are really going to do an investigation, if they`re going to look at whether or not there was domestic violence between these two.

Or are they going to say, "We think there`s a possibility pot was involved," because they were against this law to begin with. They didn`t like the fact that it`s legal in Colorado. So that`s something that`s really important.

No. 2, I had serious concerns when I did research on this situation, and I found out that the police were arguing that, while we`re sorry about the time lapse that occurred, but we`ve got a short budget and a lot of our men were laid off. Well, I`m sorry, that`s not acceptable.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No.

E. GOMEZ: There are plenty of small police units throughout the nation, and they do a good job and they respond to calls in a timely fashion.

Number three is an audit has been done and it`s been more than five years. Audits don`t take five years to get done. You can`t blame it on the lack of an audit.

I mean, this police department needs to accept responsibility. And they need to get with the program. And by saying it`s pot, it`s a result of this, without undergoing a thorough investigation, I don`t know about that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`re making a lot of really good points, that you`re wondering and suggesting that maybe the police are really playing up the pot angle. But that`s why we wanted to hear the 911 call in its entirety; and we asked for it and it hasn`t been released. Where many times toward the end of an investigation, they release 911 calls. I don`t know why they`re not.

But there doesn`t appear, however, on the face to have been any warning signs before the shooting. This was a happy family, very well-loved in the community. Here`s what the suspect`s distraught brother had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not that I know of. I know that that wasn`t Richard. Let`s just say that, I hope there`s some answers that come out about this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Richard Kirk, the suspect, was arrested in 1994 for assault, but the charges were dismissed. He did get a dui in 2000. But that`s about it. I mean he doesn`t have a long, violent criminal history to speak of. So you got to wonder, Howard Samuels, can pot in huge quantities take somebody from being a very passive and nonviolent good dad, three sons, a beautiful wife and turn them into a monster like that?

SAMUELS: Well, not usually. I mean, but you have to understand something. Marijuana today, especially in an edible form, is very potent. Now everybody has a different chemical makeup. We`re all different chemically in our bodies. And, you know, these types of drugs will cause a chain reaction very differently. And that`s why you`re taking a risk when you start to do drugs. I mean, whether it`s marijuana, whether it`s cocaine, no matter what it is, you`re risking your behavior and the life of others around you.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I want to make it clear, I`m completely against drugs, I`m 19 years sober. I don`t believe that really anybody should do drugs. Unless it`s prescribed by a doctor for a very specific reason for a very specific length of time.

We are ruining our nation with drugs and alcohol. But I don`t know if criminalizing it is the answer. All you do is create a nation of criminals. I think we`ve got to really get to the point and the question of why people feel the need to self-medicate. What is wrong with our culture -- what is so wrong with our culture that we all need to check out?

I mean, Dr. Gabe Crenshaw, final question on this subject, before we move to another drug-related subject, why is the richest country in the world, where we have everything at our feet, where some people are fighting in other countries for a scrap of food or toilets, why is it that we`re the biggest drug consumer on the planet? Are we spiritually bankrupt?

CRENSHAW: Yes, I think it`s that. I also think it`s depression. A lot of it has to do with depression, and depression isn`t always, you know, where we`re just laying [SIC] in bed or something like that where we`re crying. And oftentimes we`re celebrating, so we`re doing coke. We`re doing marijuana, and you know, long-term use of marijuana can really look just like cocaine. There`s a lot that we know about this.

Our country, our people, we`re trying to keep up. We`re overwhelmed with trying to keep up with everybody else.

Life is moving very fast. It creates anxiety. It creates depression. It creates psychosis. And we have a pharmaceutical industry and a lot of doctors that will say, "Hey, you got a problem? I got a pill to fix it." It moves itself into drugs.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Absolutely. Absolutely.

Up next, we`ve got a police chase that also has a drug angle, a police chase like you`ve never seen before. A mom takes her 5-year-old daughter on a very reckless, dangerous drive. You won`t believe what she had in the car along with her daughter.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Then watch as Coy pulls that child into her lap.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We were able to pull the child from her hands. She literally would not let the child go.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police say the chase got up to 75-miles-per-hour and lasted five or six miles.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She literally put not just herself or that child in danger, but those officers that were chasing and the other pedestrians that were on the road.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel like I`m dreaming or something when I have no idea how I got here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: A wild car chase caught on tape as a mom takes off with her young child. Cops say 34-year-old Aubrey Coy grabbed her 5-year-old daughter during a supervised visit. When police tracked her down, she pulled over. But when she was asked to get out of the car, she took off with her daughter in the passenger seat.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pull over, think of the kid.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Cops sped off after her, and their cash camera was rolling as Aubrey picked up her daughter and put the child in her lap as she drove at speeds of 75 miles an hour.

Aubrey made it five or miles before police stop sticks nearly vaulting on to the freeway with her 5-year-old daughter in her clutches. Take a look right there. There`s the child. She falls on top of her own child.

It took four cops to arrest her, and she`s struggling and fighting. Imagine how traumatized that little girl is going to be by this. What was this woman thinking? This mother?

Well, she may not have been thinking clearly. Cops say they found cocaine in her car and in her system. She`s charged with a litany of felonies, including child abuse, resisting arrest, possession of cocaine, operating under the influence of drugs, fleeing and eluding police.

And this isn`t her first brush with the law. That`s probably why she was on a supervised visit with the child to begin with. She`s been convicted of meth and cocaine possession in the past.

Straight out to the Lion`s Den. This video is terrifying. Wendy Patrick, prosecutor out in San Diego, this poor child, her life hanging in the balance during this chase.

She`s not charged with kidnapping, even though she appears to kidnap her own child from the supervised visit. Should she be charged with kidnapping?

PATRICK: Well, you know, it depends. One of the things we want to know when these things started, investigation`s going to reveal all the facts and circumstances surrounding how exactly that little girl got into the car.

But I`ve got to tell you, I would not have believed it went down the way it did, were it not for those dash cams. You just can`t narrate a sequence events this good. This is why we use dash cams.

It`s also interesting that it`s not marijuana. We were all talking about marijuana. Cocaine -- you know, and the mix, most likely of cocaine and maybe underlying mental health problems is what it sounds like.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. I mean, you`re making a very good point. Here we were, just saying how horrible the situation was where a husband is accused of killing his wife because he`s high on pot.

Here`s a mom high on coke allegedly, who put her daughter at risk. What the hell`s going on in this country? Some people might feel sympathy for this woman. You know, at first I thought, when I heard about this story, well, maybe she just wanted to be reunited with her daughter. But if she really cared about her daughter, would she be so reckless, allegedly high on coke, with another stash of cocaine right in the car?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pull over. Think of the kid.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I mean, come on, Evangeline Gomez, criminal defense attorney, she pretends to be thinking of the kid, but if she`s really thinking of the kid, she wouldn`t drive high on cocaine in the first place.

E. GOMEZ: No, she wouldn`t. But that`s why she doesn`t have the kid. I think the state dropped the ball here, because they should have never allowed this person, with her history, have supervised visitations with the child and have the grandma serve as the supervisor.

No, these should have been done at the state CPS offices or at the police station or with a third-party contractor. She obviously has a history, and I think the state failed by agreeing to this.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But you`ve got to wonder, if she`s charged with driving under the influence, cops say she had cocaine in her system. Listen to her at her court appearance.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COY: I wanted to go to Oak Lawn, because I feel like I`m dreaming or something when I have no idea how I got here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dr. Gabe Crenshaw, she says, "I don`t have any idea how I got there." Could she have been in a drug-induced blackout during this entire thing?

CRENSHAW: Yes. This is complete drug intoxication. This is, you know, abuse, and for her it might be dependence. This is exactly what happens. It impairs judgment.

Wake up, people. Drugs are bad. Marijuana, when it is intoxicated to the point of abuse, is not a good thing, mixed with cocaine. And we don`t know what we`re getting, most of the time. Fourteen point six million people are abusing the most abused drug, which is marijuana.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but this one is cocaine. This woman has got, according to cops, a super big cocaine problem. And in the past, I think it was meth too

So we`ve got a big problem in this country, Nancy Grace has much more on this story at the top of the hour just in a couple of minutes, so keep it right here on the other side.

This is another crazy story that involves drugs. Cops say this mom murdered her two teenaged kids because she was tired of talking back -- them talking back to her. But now we`re going to play for you jaw-dropping new police audiotapes where she talks about her drug and alcohol use on the night that she killed her kids -- allegedly.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- what happened last night and what happened this morning from you, yourself.

JULIE SCHENECKER, KILLED HER TEENAGE KIDS: Yes. Are my kids coming later?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m sorry.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Audio recordings she did with the police the night of the murders.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you drink anything alcohol or anything last night?

SCHENECKER: Yes.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The day after she was arrested after she killed her two teenagers, her daughter and her son.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What happened yesterday?

SCHENECKER: I hate to say, I don`t know.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Audio records she did with the police the night of the murders.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you drink any alcohol or anything last night?

SCHENECKER: Yes. Are my kids coming later?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m sorry.

SCHENECKER: Are my kids coming later?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ll talk about all that. But you had been taking your medication, all right? I mean there was nothing you weren`t taking, right?

SCHENECKER: No. Yes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, fast-breaking new developments in the infamous shaky mom case. A shocking new audio from the police interrogation is released. Julie Schenecker is accused of shooting to death her two teenage kids, a son and a daughter because they wouldn`t stop talking back to her. Julie shook uncontrollably during her perp walk. And tonight she`s charged with first-degree murder and headed for trial in less than two weeks.

In this stunning, newly released police interrogation tape Julie admits to taking a drug cocktail of 10 to 12 medications and several glasses of beer and wine in the hours leading up to her allegedly murdering her two children.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So you take a lot of medications, though, right?

SCHENECKER: Oh, my God, 10 or 12.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 10 or 12 meds?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Cops say they smelled alcohol on Julie`s breath and during the interview, she sounds completely out of it. I was listening to it, I couldn`t understand half of what she was saying, she`s slurring her words so badly, she`s contradicting herself. One minute she claims "I didn`t have anything to drink" and then the next she talks about all the beer and wine.

She even asks in this interrogation tape, if the kids -- the kids the cops say she just shot to death -- would be coming to visit her at the police station.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Find out what happened yesterday, what happened last night and what happened this morning from you, yourself.

SCHENECKER: Yes. Are my kids coming later?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m sorry?

SCHENECKER: Are my kids coming later?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ll talk about all that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: "Are my kids coming later?" Unbelievable. Lady, cops say you just shot them both, executed your kids, 13 and 16, with their lives ahead of them -- Beau and Calyx, wonderful kids, while your husband was serving in our nation`s Armed Forces overseas. Shaky mom`s attorney says they`re going to argue not guilty by reason of insanity and he wants that entire tape thrown out.

Our fantastic "Lion`s Den" debate panel is ready to thrash it out. But first, out to the news anchor for AM 820 -- Steve Summers. Steve, what`s the very latest in terms of this controversy over this incredible interrogation tape?

Steve summers, news anchor, am 820: Yes, this tape Jane runs about 30 minutes or so. There`s actually more to the police the interview, but some of it was redacted, particularly the parts that I think most people would be interested in, and that`s where Julie Schenecker talks about that fateful night and what happened to her children.

So those parts of the tape are not there. But obviously what`s quite clear is how out of it, how listless, how lethargic, how out of touch Julie Schenecker seems to be as you said contradicting herself on several key points and asking if her kids were going to be coming to visit her after they had been killed ostensibly by her.

What is going on in court right now -- we`re expecting to hear from the judge here any time on this -- is whether parts or all of this 30-minute tape are going to be admitted as evidence at Julie Schenecker`s murder trial. And they`re going to have to make this decision stat. The trial starts on April 28. And he`s going to have to pore through that tape and determine if there`s anything that prosecutors can use.

Of course, as you said, the defense wants this tape thrown out of court. And we`ll have to just see in the next couple of days as they get through preparation --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes.

STEVE SUMMERS: -- they get through preparations whether or not that tape`s going to be part of the evidence.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look at this family -- excellent report, thank you Steve - - look at this family. This is a beautiful family, the husband serving our country overseas. They look like the perfect family, they look so normal. And yet, behind closed doors, well the two beautiful kids are dead, and the father, of course, divorced the mother as soon as he found out about this. And there`s their perfect little home. I mean it`s unbelievable.

And the thing that was most chilling to me about the tape is her lack of emotion. I mean she`s not devastated. She`s not "Oh, my God, what did I do, what did I do?" She`s like very blase is the word I would use.

Now tonight we`re learning Julie`s defense team wants this very incriminating police statements thrown out of her murder trial -- of course they do, they`re damning. While she`s being read her Miranda rights, Julie asks cops if she needs a lawyer. But you can hear in the recording the detective does not immediately respond. Listen closely and then we`ll debate whether this was a screw up on the part of the cops.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have the right to remain silent, do you understand that?

SCHENECKER: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. If you give up the right to remain silent, anything you say can be used against you in court. Do you understand that?

SCHENECKER: I don`t want to go to court. Do I need a lawyer?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let me finish this then I`ll answer any question you have.

SCHENECKER: OK.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. You heard it. She says "Do I need a lawyer," and then he says "Let me finish reading this and then you can ask any questions."

Out to the "Lion`s Den", Wendy Patrick, prosecutor, was that a screw up. Can they throw out the most incriminating parts of the police statement because they ignored a request for an attorney?

PATRICK: You know, in order to answer that question, Jane, I would want to listen to the entire interview, because this is a huge issue in cases like this, as you point out. I mean everything is going to be subject to scrutiny. You`re really going to look at it in total, what was said before or after, we`re hearing just a little bit of what probably was a long dialogue. And by the way, that`s also one of the reasons that you don`t see whatever she said shown on TV.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me ask you this question. Hold on -- Wendy, yes or no, do you think this should be played for the jury? Wendy Patrick, yes or no?

PATRICK: Well, they`re going to have -- the judge decides whether or not it gets played for the jury.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes or no -- I`m (inaudible) you.

PATRICK: I can`t answer yes or no without hearing -- I need to hear the whole case to put this in context.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think it should be played for the jury.

E. GOMEZ: I don`t think so. I disagree. I disagree, Jane, you want to know why? Because they failed to read her, her Miranda rights when she was at home and that`s when she was taken into police custody. Because that`s when the cops stayed with her downstairs while the other one was upstairs and he called in that there were two homicides.

And that, the police department again, they erred there, and also she had no capacity. The woman was drunk, she`s mentally ill -- she`s slurring her words --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, wait a second -- I don`t buy it.

E. GOMEZ She has no capacity.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t buy it. Hold on, hold on.

OK. Cops say Julie wreaked of alcohol. There were open bottles of booze laying around her home. They found a slew of prescription drug bottles. She even admitted to the detectives she was taking 10 to 12 different meds and drinking three to four glasses of beer wine on the day she murdered her kids. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you remember when was the last time you took your medication? Was it last night or yesterday afternoon?

Last night.

Do you remember about what time? About 10:00?

(inaudible) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: About what time -- I know you said you drink some beer and then started drinking wine, do you remember what time it was that you stopped drink the wine?

SCHENECKER: It was just past (inaudible).

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Howard Samuels, addiction specialist, this woman, look at this what she was on -- lithium, oxycodone which is also known as hillbilly heroin, hydrocodone, anti-depressants, anti-anxieties and a whole bunch of alcohol. Are you kidding me? She`s an addict. That doesn`t mean you`re insane if you`re an addict. She had a choice of whether or not to drink --

SAMUELS: Yes, Jane --

E. GOMEZ The law is clear though. She had no capacity to --

CRENSHAW: Some of that is pharmaceutical.

PATRICK: And she -- she had no medication.

CRENSHAW: Some of that is pharmaceutical.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So what?

CRENSHAW: She was taking anti-psychotic medications.

(CROSSTALK)

E. GOMEZ That`s what the law says.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`re a nation of drug addicts because -- excuse me -- we`re a nation of drug addicts because doctors are prescribing the wrong thing and too much of it. I`m in recovery. I have gone to doctors where they will really try to push mood altering meds on me, even though I say I can`t take it, I`m in recovery.

Doctors don`t know --

CRENSHAW: They are irresponsible.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me ask you a question, are doctors to blame for this horror story? And I`ll start with Howard Samuels.

SAMUELS: Yes, Jane. Jane, absolutely -- the people who failed this woman was the doctors that were treating her. For her to have oxycontin, for her to have anti-anxiety pills, the cocktail that she was given, this looks like a woman that could have had a very serious bipolar condition. Well, with the oxycontin mixed with the anti-anxiety pills which are probably benzos, along with the alcohol and the bipolar, you mix that together, this is what you`ve got.

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I blame the doctors.

E. GOMEZ Also missing is the husband and the state.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Excuse me. Excuse me. Honestly, Evangeline, he`s serving his country overseas. He wasn`t part of this.

J. GOMEZ: But he knew his wife was sick.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So what?

J. GOMEZ: Did you see the e-mails?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So what?

J. GOMEZ: So what -- her family wanted to help and to get the children out of that situation and he did nothing. And the state has failed by not at least charging him with child endangerment or -- failing to protect those innocent children.

CRENSHAW: Mental illness is a serious disease in this country.

J. GOMEZ: Because he was protecting his country, that`s why.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. He was protecting his country.

E. GOMEZ: No, but he`s still a father. He`s a father and he`s a husband as well.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Excuse me -- who could possibly --

E. GOMEZ: And just because he works doesn`t mean he --

(CROSSTALK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: -- who could possibly predict that your wife is going to blow away your two beautiful children? How could you possibly predict that? Nobody can predict that. I mean nobody. Nobody could ever imagine. That`s beyond the realm of comprehension for anyone.

We can`t blame this man, he`s suffered enough. I blame the doctors, I blame our addict nation.

And we have got another story, involving addiction. How did a pot smoking mom who drove for 12 miles without realizing she had left her baby on the roof of her car get zero jail time?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Went to her friends` house to smoke more weed.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is this your child?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How old?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A month and a half.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Placing her infant child, two-month-old in a car seat on top of the roof of the car.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Didn`t realize until she got home, 12 mile away.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The car seat right in the middle of the street. People, you know, die pretty fast down that street.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This case is disturbing but it is a very scary, dangerous event.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight a stoned mom who drives off with her six-week-old child on the roof of her car gets 16 years of probation, but no jail time. Catalina Clouser was 19 when she went to a friend`s house in Phoenix, Arizona to smoke some weed then put her one-and-a-half month old baby on the car roof and then forgot she was there -- like I sometimes have done with my coffee -- And she gets in the car and drives 12 miles before noticing her child`s not inside the car.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The defendant had smoked marijuana prior to getting into her car and placing her infant child, two-month-old in a car seat on top of the roof of the car and she drove off.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Catalina was also apparently so high she didn`t even realize the infant who was strapped inside a car seat, had fallen off the roof and on to a busy street. Luckily the child survived, unhurt, but she could have killed him.

Straight out to the "Lion`s Den" -- Evangeline Gomez, criminal defense attorney, she pleaded guilty to child abuse and driving under the influence, the judge gave her 16 years probation, three months` deferred jail time meaning she will not have to serve a day behind bars. Should she have been sent to jail?

E. GOMEZ: This is an unbelievable story. This is a total slap on the hand. I`m very shocked that this is law and order Maricopa County. I would have expected something different. Recently we had a mother who was going to a job interview and left two children in a car, obviously if you compare the facts in that situation, that situation wasn`t as bad, and you know, she was put in jail, and her children allegedly removed.

So I am astounded by this decision. But I`m also upset with the cops because they had taken in her boyfriend, the child`s father, and they let her go. He admitted --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, wait a second. Let`s not blame the cops for everything here. They didn`t get high. They didn`t get high. They didn`t dye her hair pink, ok?

(CROSSTALK)

E. GOMEZ: I`m not blaming them for everything. But -- why didn`t they investigate, and why didn`t they question her? They should have questioned her more, and they shouldn`t have driven her home.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look at those eyes. Look at those eyes. Those eyes scare me.

E. GOMEZ: Exactly.

SAMUELS: Exactly.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK, just to explain what Evangeline is saying. This was the second time that day that Catalina had come face to face with the cops. The first time her boyfriend, the baby`s father, was pulled over and arrested for DUI. Catalina and the child were in the car with him at that point.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because of the six-week-old baby being present and the mother, the mother admitting to officers that she had smoked marijuana, officers elected to take her and the baby and the vehicle home and park it so that it was secure.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But instead of staying home, and I think the officers did a great job by taking her home, instead of staying home, she gets out and goes and smokes more pot with her kid in tow and then forgets her kid on the roof of the car.

I`m going to ask a question. You know we need a driver`s license in order to drive a car. Has the time come where you have to get a license -- you should have to get a license in order to have a kid? Dr. Gabe Crenshaw?

CRENSHAW: Absolutely. I think you should. Because, I mean, this is irresponsibility at its best. And she`s already young, so that`s already a problem. And I understand that she`s possibly -- she was possibly pregnant again. She`s abusing drugs already and exposing her child to it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes.

CRENSHAW: Where was her kid when they were inside the house? But look what happens when you do weed that way. Memory goes, impaired judgment; you know, impaired perception. Of course, the baby is on top of the roof and she didn`t give a damn. And this is what`s happening.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think if you`re going to have a kid, you`ve got to sign an affidavit that says you won`t smoke pot or get high or drunk.

J. GOMEZ: Go to class or something.

(CROSSTALK)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Should you have to get a license to have kids? Joe Gomez?

J. GOMEZ: Yes, Jane, I think just like kids have to go to driver`s ed, parents should have to go to parenting ed. That way they don`t get stoned and suddenly put the baby on the baby carrier on top of the car and zip off like nothing`s going to happen. Yes, I think it`s time to educate people before they have children, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Or if you find out that they`re having children, make them sign an affidavit that they`re not going to use drugs and excessive alcohol.

Nancy is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

END