updated 6/9/2005 2:23:45 PM ET 2005-06-09T18:23:45

Guest: Jim Moret, Susan Filan, Chris LeJuez, Iva Bradley, Ron Bradley, Stacy Brown, Bob Rothstein

DAN ABRAMS, HOST:  Coming up, the jury in the Michael Jackson trial finishes its second full day of deliberations, no verdict.  What does that mean? 


ABRAMS (voice-over):  The jury deliberations continue in the Michael Jackson case.  We now know who the jury foreman is.  And a Jackson insider says he and others around Jackson have known for years about his unusual relationships with young boys. 

Virtually the entire island still searching for Natalee Holloway.  Authorities must decide by tomorrow if they have enough evidence to keep two suspects in custody.  We‘ve got the interview with their lawyer.  And it turns out Natalee is not the only American missing in the area.  We‘ll talk to the parents of another. 

Plus, a whistle-blowing scientist at Los Alamos scheduled to testify before Congress, brutally attacked.  His lawyers say the assailants told him to keep quiet. 

The program about justice starts now. 


ABRAMS:  Hi, everyone.  First up on the docket, live from the Michael Jackson trial, where the jury has just concluded its second full day of deliberations with no verdict.  Fourteen hours of deliberations so far. 

Today, no questions for the judge.  Jackson‘s adviser talked about how Jackson is holding up after his repeated visits to the hospital. 


REV. JESSE JACKSON, JACKSON SPIRITUAL ADVISER:  Bed-ridden by night, and he walks by day, like the rest of us do.  He does have the back problem.  And we talked.  I suppose, Sunday night he was grimacing in pain.  So for those—it is painful to him to hear people suggest that this is fake.  His pain is real.  He has been bruised.  He has been injured, and it hurts. 


ABRAMS:  Jurors who arrived this morning in sheriff‘s vans were whisked into the courthouse, started deliberations at about 8:30 this morning, heading home just six hours later.  Very short court dates here. 

Outside the courthouse, fans were out in full force to show their support for Michael.  And while all of this was going on, NBC News has learned who the jury has chosen as its foreperson.  It is Juror Number 2, 63-years-old, married, father of two adult sons.  He‘s a retired school counselor and attendance director with a graduate degree.  Never served on a jury before, says he knew nothing, absolutely nothing about the allegations against Jackson before this trial started. 

So what does it all mean?  Joining me now in Santa Maria, court watchers NBC‘s Mike Taibbi, attorney and senior correspondent for “Inside Edition” Jim Moret, and MSNBC legal analyst and former prosecutor Susan Filan. 

All right, Jim, let me start with you on the fact that this jury has not reached a verdict again today.  Anything to read into it one way or another? 

JIM MORET, “INSIDE EDITION”:  Yes, you can read into one thing.  You can say that the jurors are talking, and that‘s a good thing.  They didn‘t walk into that jury room with their mind made up. 

There are ten counts in this case.  It really does come down to whether you believe this accuser or you believe Michael Jackson.  But there are clearly a lot of things that have them discussing this case.  And I think that‘s ultimately a good thing. 

ABRAMS:  All right, Mike, let‘s talk about the jury foreperson.  He is Juror Number Two.  You have watched him inside that courtroom.  He or someone close to him was diagnosed with cancer.  He‘s never been a victim or a witness to a crime.  He‘s never accused of or a victim of inappropriate sexual behavior, knew nothing of the 1993 investigation. 

What have you observed about this guy inside the courtroom? 

MIKE TAIBBI, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT:  Very businesslike.  I mean, most of the jurors were, in the sense that they paid attention to the testimony, they paid particular attention to the important parts of the testimony. 

In other words, when I‘d hear something that made me alert, or saying, “Wait, this is big, this is big,” I would look over to the jury and this individual, along with most of the others, but this individual certainly looked at it, took notes, seemed clearly to be understanding the import of what was being said.  And that in the person of a jury foreperson is an important characteristic to have. 

Because don‘t forget, Dan, the people in that room, if they reflect the people on the outside, and that includes we in the press who followed this step-by-step, may be absolutely divided on what they feel at this point, even in the beginning of their deliberations. 

I mean, the people in the press have listened to everything and disagree completely on whether they believe this family is a family of grifters or if Michael Jackson is absolutely a child molester.  Those are pretty diverse positions to have.

And the foreman has to be somebody who can challenge each of the people who seem to have, in that jury room, if they do, fixed positions, to see if they can get them to change.  Because the goal, at the end of the exercise, is to come out with a verdict. 

ABRAMS:  And Susan, do you think that when they pick a jury foreperson it‘s more, who does everyone like and who can everyone live with?  Or is it, who is the greatest leader amongst us? 

SUSAN FILAN, FORMER PROSECUTOR:  Generally, they‘re looking for leadership.  They‘re looking for fairness.  They‘re looking for somebody that‘s going to effectively be able to communicate whatever it is that the jury wants or needs to the bailiffs and to the court. 

The foreperson plays a very important role in keeping deliberations on a steady track.  It‘s almost like being a U.N. peacemaker.  You need to make sure everybody gets their sides heard while the case gets moving forward.  You just have to be able to stop the fighting and keep the discussions live and healthy. 

ABRAMS:  The jury foreperson was asked in the voir dire process, “What do you think about children and lies?  Do children lie?”  “Depends on the nature of the situation, he said.  Depending if a child comes home, should have been home earlier and he‘s late, it‘s going to benefit him or her to maybe get away with something, you might have a little white lie there.  But I think most often than not”—that‘s how he said—“children do tell the truth.  But I think once in a while, if it benefits them, they might twist it a little bit.”

You know, Jim, that sounds like it‘s someone who generally believes the testimony, the accounts of a child. 

MORET:  Really sounds like a parent to me.  I mean, I have three kids. 

And I would probably say something along those same lines. 

Generally, kids tell the truth.  You do have to look to the parents. 

In this case, that was made a big focus by the defense.  Look to the mom.  She‘s setting the tone.  She‘s teaching the child.  She‘s enlisting him as a grifter. 

I think that this person‘s comments make sense.  And I agree with Susan that the person probably is a leader, probably likeable, and he‘s hopefully moving this forward in some meaningful way. 

ABRAMS:  Here‘s what we know about the jurors, all right?  Three have graduate degrees.  One graduated college.  Two have two-year degrees.  Four have some college.  Two graduated high school.  In other words, you‘re talking about generally a pretty well-educated jury. 

Five of the jurors had heard or read something about the ‘93 investigation.  Two of the jurors knew nothing about the case before being selected.  Ten knew a little about the case before being selected.  So I just am stunned that this juror, who is now the foreperson, says he knew nothing about this case before being selected. 

Susan, does that make you wonder?  Do you question, is this person telling the truth? 

FILAN:  Well, Dan, I‘ve been in Santa Maria for quite a while now.  And I go around the town and I ask people, so what do you think?  They‘re not paying attention.  They don‘t care.  This isn‘t important to them.  They have very, very minimal opinions. 

I say, well, do you think he‘s guilty, do you think he‘s not guilty?  They opine very reticently, not because they don‘t really want to talk about it, but it‘s not the focus.  What‘s going on in this town are Little League games, people raising families, and people working really hard.  There isn‘t a lot of time in people‘s lives to ponder Michael Jackson. 

ABRAMS:  Mike Taibbi, go ahead. 

TAIBBI:  Yes, I just think that that may be true, that people do have lives.  That‘s clearly true.  But I think it would be impossible to be in this town and have any degree of alertness to be anything, you know, above comatose and not know anything about the Michael Jackson case, both the current case and what has happened to him over the past 12 years, and has been said about him over the past 12 years. 

That raised my suspicions a little bit.  But I think it was kind of a companion piece to another answer he gave.  I remember being in court for his questioning when he talked about the press.  Thomas Mesereau, Jackson‘s lead attorney, spoke frequently about the press and asked each of the jurors what their feelings were. 

And this juror expressed, if not a distrust of the press, at least an opinion that they intruded too much on the flow of information that was legitimate information.  And I think that that was the theme that was pounded continually in the trial itself by the Jackson side, that, you know, everything from the Martin Bashir documentary at the very beginning, to all the tabloid reporting in print and on television over the past 12 years, all contributed to this story that brought us to this point where Michael Jackson is on trial. 

ABRAMS:  Jim Moret, do you think that his lawyers should be preparing him for the possibility of jail time already? 

MORET:  Yes, I do actually.  I mean, I think you have got to be—as a good lawyer, you‘re a counselor to that person.  You‘ve got to explain what the very realistic possibilities are.  You can‘t simply paint a rosy picture. 

There are enough people around Michael Jackson who clearly do just that, want to tell him what he wants to hear.  As his lawyer, I think you have to at least broach the subject and get him prepared emotionally and mentally, because no one knows what that verdict‘s going to be.  And he‘s going to be sitting right there when it‘s read.  He better be prepared. 

ABRAMS:  Mike Taibbi, Susan Filan, Jim Moret, thanks.  We are, of course, going to continue to stay here as the jury continues its deliberations.  And they will, too. 

All right.  Coming up, a Jackson insider speaks out, saying he and others around Jackson have known for years about Jackson‘s special relationships with children. 

And breaking news in the search for a missing American teenager in Aruba.  Two men held in connection with the case expected to be charged tomorrow.  We‘ve got the exclusive with their lawyer. 

Plus, it turns out Natalee Holloway is not the only American missing in the area.  We‘ll talk to the parents of a young American woman who‘s been missing for years. 

Your e-mails, abramsreport@MSNBC.com.  Please include your name, where you‘re writing from.  I‘ll respond at the end of the show. 



ABRAMS:  Breaking news out of Aruba where two men are being held in the disappearance of 18-year-old Natalee Holloway.  Not yet charged, but according to the public defender in Aruba, the two suspects are being held on suspicion of homicide, accessory to homicide, and kidnapping.  Now, no charges have been filed yet, but they are expected to come tomorrow. 

Now missing for eight days, Holloway was last seen May 30th while on a senior class trip in Aruba.  Authorities arrested the two men, former security guards at a hotel two blocks from where Holloway was staying.  These men reportedly not strangers to police.  Apparently have a habit of going around to hotels trying to meet female tourists, asking them for cigarettes, et cetera. 

Natalee‘s family has not given up hope as the search efforts continue.  And the number of people coming to the island for the Alabama high school graduate grows.


PAUL REYNOLDS, NATALEE HOLLOWAY‘S UNCLE:  It‘s an amazing thing to see, the participation.  I saw people out there trudging through the rugged terrain looking for her.  It was hot.  They were carrying a bottle of water, absolutely dedicated to finding her.

People are willing to do whatever is necessary to find her.  And watching people come to us and ask how to participate is just hope renewing to us on a daily basis. 



ABRAMS:  Joining me now for another ABRAMS REPORT exclusive, the attorney for the two men held in the disappearance of Natalee Holloway, Chris LeJuez. 

Thank you very much, sir, for coming on the program.  We appreciate it. 


ABRAMS:  All right.  So you are convinced that your clients are going to be charged tomorrow with homicide and some of those other charges that we laid out? 

LEJUEZ:  Tomorrow, the clients will have to appear in front of a judge.  This judge will rule.  If the detention of the clients is according to our legal system, rightfully done or not, if they‘re legally detained or not.  If they are legally detained, the detention will be extended for another eight days. 

ABRAMS:  And lay out for us, if you will, what the charges are, as far as you know. 

LEJUEZ:  They have been charged with several accusations.  One of them would be what we call here murder.  That would be premeditation and accessory to murder.  The second one would be homicide.  That would be the same thing but without the premeditation, and also accessory to homicide.  And the third one will be what you call capital kidnapping in the United States. 

ABRAMS:  Now, have the authorities provided you with evidence, information?  Have they found any evidence that suggests that Natalee is dead? 

LEJUEZ:  They have not—I have not received any kind of information regarding that fact.  So I have no reason to believe that we are dealing here as yet with any dead person. 

What I do know is that I received the documentation from the public prosecutor‘s office approximately one hour ago.  I haven‘t been able to go through all the documentation as yet.  And I hope to be able to do so tonight before tomorrow when we go to see the judge. 

ABRAMS:  What is the evidence that they have against your clients?  I mean, obviously, they‘ve arrested them.  They believe that they have what they said is reasonable suspicion to detain them.  What is the evidence upon which they‘re basing that? 

LEJUEZ:  I have only knowledge from my clients.  I have no knowledge from any documentation or from the public prosecutor‘s office.  Perhaps I do have it now in my possession, but I haven‘t been able to study it yet.  The clients have told me that they have been told by the police that they would fit a description of people that were seen in the company of the person missing. 

ABRAMS:  All right.  So let me ask you straight out.  Do your clients know her?  Have they ever met her?  Have they told you anything about any interaction that they may have had with her? 

LEJUEZ:  Well, up to now and up to in the last conversations we have had with the clients, both of them have categorically denied any wrongdoing, any involvement in this case.  Both of them have independently denied knowing Natalee Holloway. 

ABRAMS:  And have they denied ever meeting her or ever having seen her? 

LEJUEZ:  Both of them have denied ever meeting her, ever seeing her, ever spoken to her.  They have told us that they know her only from the newspaper and the news media here in Aruba. 

ABRAMS:  And have they told you what they were doing around the time she went missing? 

LEJUEZ:  Yes, they did give an explanation.  Both of them have.  And they have given the same statement to the police here in Aruba.  Both have a very reasonable explanation for what they were doing and that would not involve being anywhere near the Holiday Inn hotel at the moment of the disappearance of Natalee. 

ABRAMS:  What do they say they were doing? 

LEJUEZ:  Well, one of them has said that he was—he had been to a beach soul festival, soul beach festival, it‘s called in Aruba.  And after that, he went back home with his wife.  And they picked up their little child they have at their grandfather‘s house.  And they went home to sleep. 

I have been able to confirm this statement independently and without telling the wife and without the mother-in-law.  And they both confirmed that this was the case. 

ABRAMS:  And the other one is telling you he‘s got an alibi, as well? 

LEJUEZ:  The other one, I have not been able to find any confirmation of his story, as yet. 

ABRAMS:  All right, well, that‘s interesting. 

All right, Mr. LeJuez, thank you so much for taking the time to come on the program.  We look forward to having you back as soon as we get more on this case. 


ABRAMS:  Guy‘s going to have to figure out an alibi.

Natalee Holloway isn‘t the first young woman to disappear in the area.  Seven years ago, then-23-year-old Amy Bradley went missing while on a Caribbean cruise with her family.  March 24, 1998, Amy was seen by her father at about 5:30 in the morning on her cabin balcony.  6:00 a.m., her father awoke, Amy was gone. 

Two women on the cruise reported seeing Amy riding the elevator to the top deck just before it docked at the island of Curacao.  At 6:00 a.m., she was with a musician from the ship‘s band, they said.  A Curacao cab driver told Amy‘s father that Amy approached his cab the morning she went missing and said she urgently needed a phone.  And two strangers say they saw Amy on Curacao, one in August in 1998, the other in January of 1999.

Now, Amy is still missing.  There‘s a $260,000 reward for any information leading to her whereabouts.  Late today, I talked to her parents, Iva and Ron Bradley, about the search for their daughter. 


IVA BRADLEY, MOTHER OF MISSING GIRL:  We have fought for seven years to get the attention that Amy needs to be found.  When we discovered Amy missing, we begged the ship‘s personnel to not put the gangway down, to not allow anybody to leave the ship.  And we told them that, if Amy had left the room for any more than 15 minutes, she would have left us a note. 

And they put the gangway down anyway.  People left the ship in Curacao.  And please keep in mind that Curacao is part of the Netherlands and of (INAUDIBLE) they‘re within miles of each other.  It‘s the next island over from Aruba. 

We spent the entire day in Aruba, the day before.  We rented a Jeep.  We went out all day long.  One side of the island is for tourists, obviously.  The other side of the island is destitute, as far as desert, and tumbleweeds, goats, dogs. 

We get back on the boat.  We‘re there that afternoon.  That evening, one of the waiters came up to us as we were in the atrium.  He specifically asked for Amy by name.  I asked him why he wanted Amy.  He said because we want to take her to a bar. 

And I said, “She‘s with her brother in the casino.”  So when they came out, we told her about the waiter wanting to take her off of the ship.  And she screwed her mouth up and said, “No way, that‘s too creepy.”  We suggested being in a foreign country that they not leave the ship.  We came to find out that the same bar that they wanted to take Amy to was the same bar as Natalee Holloway was in. 

ABRAMS:  And that struck me, Mr. Bradley, when I heard about that.  I mean, when you heard about this story, obviously, the location, you know, must have made you sort of particularly attuned to this story.  But then when you heard the name of the bar, you know...

RON BRADLEY, FATHER OF MISSING GIRL:  Well, that‘s true.  And we‘ve maintained from the beginning that someone saw Amy and took Amy from that ship in some way, that several ways by boat, through cargo, the cargo doors that open and close. 

And then, when I just recently heard you say about the possible kidnapping, it just brings everything home as to what we expected the whole time.  And I certainly hope that that‘s not the case.  And I certainly hope that Natalee will be found. 

ABRAMS:  What do you make, Ms. Bradley, of the reported sightings of her?  How reliable do you think that they have been? 

I.                BRADLEY:  Well, I believe the reported sightings are from people that have come forward that have seen Amy.  The two Canadians that saw Amy on the beach in 1998, they described her tattoos, her demeanor, and did not know she was missing. 

The Naval person who went to a brothel on Curacao said that Amy asked him for help, told him her name.  She said, “My name is Amy Bradley.  Please help me.”  He didn‘t know anybody was missing.  He told her there was a naval ship five minutes down the dock that she could leave. 

And she said, “No, you don‘t understand.  Please help me.  My name is Amy Bradley.”  At that time, two men in the bar removed her, told her to move and go upstairs. 

He did not report anything.  He had been on the ship.  And being a petty officer, there were certain unauthorized areas that he could not go into, and that‘s where he was.  When he saw Amy on the front cover of a major magazine, he had since retired and he contacted us. 

And he said, “I have seen your daughter.  I have seen her.  I have talked to her.  And she was in trouble.”  And he said, “I apologize for not doing anything about that.”

There‘s one thing I want to make clear here to parents and to people that are traveling.  Venezuela, on a good day from Curacao or Aruba, is in sight.  We have been told by locals and been told by investigators, there are boats incoming.  They come and go freely. 

We also know there‘s a tremendous amount of drug trade.  That‘s not a secret from Venezuela through those islands, up through the United States, or wherever they‘re going with the drugs.  So...

ABRAMS:  All right, well...

I.                BRADLEY:  So we‘re putting our families and our children in danger, and because of the situation with the United States being in a position where they say they have no jurisdiction, it hurt us terribly, and it hurt Amy.  And we‘ve not gotten the help that we need. 

ABRAMS:  Well, I‘m hoping that—you know, it‘s hard to say this, but that this other story, which is a horrible, horrible tragedy that, you know, hopefully that both can somehow end in a positive way and that one may be able to help the other. 

I.                BRADLEY:  I certainly hope so.

ABRAMS:  We are putting up the tip-line.  We‘ve been putting it up throughout this interview with you all.  I know how difficult this is for you to still talk about it to this day.  But I think, you know, you would agree this is the only way, by going public. And I wish you both the best of luck. 


ABRAMS:  Iva and Ron Bradley. 

Coming up, the allegations against Michael Jackson have been around for years.  Now, a Jackson insider admits people around Jackson knew that there were some issues.  It was their job to keep it out of the limelight. 

And a whistle-blowing scientist at Los Alamos scheduled to testify before Congress about nuclear safety, brutally attacked.  His wife says the assailants told him to keep quiet. 

And being a Hollywood bad-boy used to mean you just drove fast cars and dated gorgeous women.  Since when does it mean you get to throw phones at hotel employees because they make you mad? 

My closing...


ABRAMS:  Coming up, surprising information from Michael Jackson‘s former publicist.  He worked with Jackson for 35 years.  Now there‘s a book out that‘s talking about Jackson‘s relationships with young boys.  The exclusive details after the headlines.


ABRAMS:  We are back live in Santa Maria, California, where the jury in Michael Jackson‘s trial has finished its second full day of deliberations.  The jury will report back here tomorrow morning. 

Now tonight, new revelations about the life of Michael Jackson are out in a new book from one of the men who may have known him best.  Bob Jones, Jackson‘s long-time publicist worked for the Jackson family for 35 years, handling the early press appearances of the “Jackson Five”.  It was Jones who apparently coined the name “King of Pop” for Jackson and saw him through his rise to stardom and later through the charges of sexual molestation from young boys in the 1990‘s. 

But in June of 2004, Jones was abruptly fired by Jackson only months after he was indicted on sexual molestation charges.  Just when Jones thought Jackson would need him most.  Jones has penned a new book, “Michael Jackson: The Man Behind the Mask”, which includes numerous excerpts from Jones‘ personal journals going all the way back to 1970 when Jones was executive director of publicity at Motown Records up to his recent appearance on the witness stand for the prosecution in the Jackson case where he was called to testify about what he saw happened between Jackson and the ‘93 accuser. 

He said in that book that he couldn‘t take his eyes off of Jackson during his testimony.  Quote—“He should never have been there in the first place.  I thought about the many times I had warned him about his interaction with these little boys.  Perhaps he thought it was innocent behavior, but I‘d reminded him that not all would see it that way and that he was opening the door to unnecessary trouble.”

Joining me now is Jackson family friend and MSNBC analyst Stacy Brown, who co-wrote the book with Bob Jones.  Stacy, good to see you. 

All right, so look, let me—let‘s get this out of the way right at the top.  The Jackson team is going to say that Bob Jones is a disgruntled employee, I assume, who is now writing this tell-all book to make some money, and the reason he is writing this is because he got fired.

STACY BROWN, JACKSON FAMILY FRIEND:  Well, absolutely.  And you know they have already told you that I‘m an ex-Jackson family friend, so you know it has already began.  It began last year actually.  Debra Opri, who I happen to like, Joseph and Katherine‘s attorney, went on another network and said you know Bob Jones is an ex-employee.  You can‘t put merit into what he said.  So the strikes began immediately. 

ABRAMS:  All right.  So let me read some of what Bob Jones says and then I‘m going to ask you why you think people should believe him. 

It ate at me.  Time after time.  Should I quit this job?  But I had to remember a couple of things.  For one thing I was assuming Michael was doing something criminal with these young boys.  Even today I have no concrete proof.  Sure, I‘d see these boys go into his private quarters and stay for hours, days, weeks at a time.  The parents of these boys would also see these bizarre scenarios unfolding and they too said nothing.  I had no real evidence.  Furthermore, I couldn‘t afford to quit and become an outcast.  Jobs for black public relations men in Hollywood are extremely scarce.

So what exactly is Bob Jones saying?  He‘s saying that he was suspicious all this time and he remained suspicious, but he never saw anything criminal? 

BROWN:  Well, Bob has made it clear that he was not always on board with these sleepovers.  He wasn‘t on board with the kids traveling with Michael.  The book talks about how there was this one kid who traveled with him to Gabon in Africa and how he stayed in a room and locked away.  He talked about another kid over in Monaco where they term that trip to Monaco the honeymoon because of the way they—Michael and this particular young boy behaved.  It alarmed everyone around him, Dan.

ABRAMS:  I read on.  For several years Michael had to be careful.  People, perhaps prosecutors were watching him.  But his habits didn‘t change.  He still paraded around the globe with little boys.  What many people didn‘t know too was that not only did he pay the Rent-A-Wreck family millions, he had paid a couple of more million to his maid and the son had claimed that something happened between him and the king.  These little boys were costing the king millions upon millions of dollars.

So how do you defend Bob Jones against those who say, OK, yes, he‘s saying this, but he just can‘t be believed? 

BROWN:  Well, he‘s the one, and you know, that‘s to be expected.  He‘s the one that was there.  He was the one that Michael Jackson would call to set up a lot of these, if you will, rendezvous.  He was the one that Michael Jackson would call to grease the skids, if you will.  He was the one Michael Jackson would call to set up certain appearances, certain visits, unexpected visits to the hospital. 

Michael used Bob Jones a lot.  Bob Jones was extremely loyal.  And Dan, I have to tell you, there is a show that they did about Bob Jones on the Black Entertainment Television network in 1995.  Michael Jackson appeared on that show and he—in his own words said Bob Jones is the most loyal person I have ever known and he is the most honest person.  Bob Jones will not lie.

ABRAMS:  Very quickly, Stacy, can you remain a Jackson family friend after co-authoring this book? 

BROWN:  Well, Dan, you heard.  You—you know Luanda Lane (ph), Jermaine‘s assistant, approached you in a very hostile way today and told you in no uncertain terms that that should no longer be the case.  Look, you know, I have not lied about anything.  I‘ve not been dishonest about anything.  I went to the—certain members of the Jackson family before taking on this task. 

We talked about it.  No, they did not agree with it.  However, I decided that it would be ludicrous for me to not do this.  Bob trusted me, as they trusted me.  I don‘t think I betrayed anybody‘s trust. 

ABRAMS:  Stacy Brown, thanks.  Appreciate it. 

Coming up—a whistleblower about to testify before Congress allegedly lured to a bar and beaten, according to his lawyer all part of a plan to keep him silent.  We‘ve got the story coming up next.

Your e-mails, send them to abramsreport@msnbc.com.  Please include your name and where you‘re writing from.  I respond at the end of the show.


ABRAMS:  Coming up, was a whistle-blower lured to a bar then beaten?  Allegedly told to keep his mouth shut.  The pictures are gruesome.  His family is furious, coming up.



ABRAMS:  The pictures you are about to see, it hurts really just to even look at them.  They are brutal.  This is Tommy Ray Hook, a 52-year-old former auditor and whistleblower at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.  He was supposed to testify before a House committee this month about alleged financial irregularities at the lab.  Hook was brutally beaten by as many as four to six men in the parking lot of a Santa Fe topless bar Saturday night. 

Hook‘s family says he was lured to the bar to meet an anonymous caller who claimed to have information about problems at Los Alamos.  When the caller didn‘t show, family says Hook went to the parking lot and was dragged out of his car.  This is his wife Susie.


SUSIE HOOK, WHISTLEBLOWER‘S WIFE:  He has a fracture down in his jaw down here and under his eye.  He was swollen really, really bad.  His teeth are pushed back and some are broken.  He‘s going to need—he has a therapist coming in to help him talk.  And he has a loss of memory right now, but you know it‘s starting to come back because he‘s had a terrible concussion.  He has a disk, herniated disk now they found from this. 


ABRAMS:  Apparently the attackers left Tommy‘s wallet and watch and

his car, and according to his wife, Hook was warned to keep his mouth shut

·         quote—“if you know what‘s good for you, you won‘t say anything.”  But NBC News has learned that the FBI and the Santa Fe police have interviewed one of the alleged attackers and he says the assault was—quote—“just a bar fight”.  University of California, which runs Los Alamos under contract at the Department of Energy and the Los Alamos Lab have said they are outraged and they‘re cooperating with the investigation. 

Bob Rothstein is Tommy Ray Hook‘s attorney and represents him and another former auditor at Los Alamos in a suit they filed against the University of California.  All right, so Mr. Rothstein, thank you very much for coming on the program.  Let me ask you about this information that we are just getting in and that is that one of the alleged perpetrators is claiming—quote—“it was just a bar fight.”

BOB ROTHSTEIN, TOMMY RAY HOOK‘S ATTORNEY:  We have not heard anything to verify that.  The Santa Fe police have declined to provide us with any information regarding the developments in the criminal investigation.  It would be interesting to learn this, particularly since the people involved in this incident fled from the scene, which suggests that they were guilty of something more than an ordinary bar fight.  We‘ve done some...

ABRAMS:  And...

ROTHSTEIN:  ... investigation of our own.  Our initial...

ABRAMS:  Go ahead...

ROTHSTEIN:  ... conversations with some of the employees at the club where this took place was that there had been no altercation, there had been no provocation, nothing untoward inside the bar.  That Mr. Hook had sat there quietly and waited for quite a while, and then left the bar by himself, and was not followed by anybody. 

ABRAMS:  Now the statement about, “you better keep quiet” et cetera, that was according to Mr. Hook himself? 

ROTHSTEIN:  That‘s what he has told us.  That‘s what he told his wife and we‘ve told other authorities immediately after this happened. 

ABRAMS:  So you are convinced that he was attacked by people trying to get him to shut up? 

ROTHSTEIN:  Tommy Hook is a man of enormous personal integrity and has an excellent reputation for truthfulness, for honesty.  He has a long career in administration at the laboratory and held some of the most responsible positions there.  He is not a man who I would believe would make up these type of things to get himself out of an unpleasant incident. 

ABRAMS:  Here‘s what his wife said about that. 


S. HOOK:  He was brutally attacked because he is trying to do the right thing and do what he thinks he needs to do.  And he has suffered a great deal by trying to do his job. 


ABRAMS:  And so no chance, according to you, that you know he‘s in some topless bar and just gets in a fight?  I mean the position that you are taking and that his wife is taking is that he never wanted to be there in the first place, but that he was effectively lured there, correct? 

ROTHSTEIN:  That‘s correct.  That we have received...


ROTHSTEIN:  ... no information from any person claiming to be a witness that supports any of those allegations. 

ABRAMS:  All right, Mr. Rothstein, we will continue to follow this story.  Thank you very much for taking the time to come on the program. 

ROTHSTEIN:  My pleasure, Dan. 

ABRAMS:  Coming up, bad boy Russell Crowe in cuffs charged with assault.  Why I hope the latest Hollywood celebrity is not being treated differently because he is rich and famous. 


ABRAMS:  My “Closing Argument”—why I‘m tired of the glorification of some of Hollywood‘s so-called bad boys.  The latest example, actor Russell Crowe accused of throwing a telephone into the face of the concierge at a New York hotel.  Crowe was led out in cuffs and charged with assault and criminal possession of a weapon.  His spokesperson says the concierge gave the star—quote—“attitude.”

Last week, actor Christian Slater was in court after being arrested for groping a woman on a New York City street.  I‘m betting both incidents will only add some Hollywood cache to the stars‘ bad boy resumes.  But these types of cases should be different.  We‘re not talking about battling paparazzi or downing a few too many drinks one night.  If true, these cases just show disrespect for fellow human beings, average, every day citizens. 

There seems to be a sense that these celebs are above it all and that in Hollywood it may just help them, some sort of weird bad boy credibility.  After all, many in Hollywood still revere director Roman Polanski even though he‘s a wanted fugitive in the United States.  He pled guilty in 1977 to having sex with a 13-year-old, who said he plied her with drugs and alcohol, but he fled the country before being sentenced. 

The term Hollywood bad boy connotes a sort of James Dean or Steve McQueen like  toughness.  But why?  It doesn‘t mean you‘re tough when you physically lash out at the people who are working for you or physically harass people you don‘t know.  That‘s just pathetic.  It would be nice if the—quote—“industry” would treat these people accordingly. 

Coming up, a hint of families with criminal trouble in their past. 

When you plan a family reunion, you might want to do so within state lines.

Our “OH PLEAs!” is coming up. 


ABRAMS:  I‘ve had my say, now it‘s time for “Your Rebuttal”.  Last night I asked my guests to predict when the jury would reach a verdict in Michael Jackson‘s case. 

Barry Johnson in Palatka, Florida, “Predicting what the California jury is like predicting the next earthquake.”  Quite true, Barry. 

Also last night my exclusive tour inside the Santa Barbara County jail, which would likely be Jackson‘s first stop if convicted.  Cheryl Vetter in Lafayette, Indiana, “Shame on you.  Tonight‘s piece in which the sheriff detailed Michael Jackson‘s potential jail accommodations and your discussion of which prison he might then be sent to was way out of line in my view.  I‘m left wondering whatever became of the presumption of innocence.”

So Cheryl, I would assume then you‘d think we can‘t even discuss what would happen if Jackson is convicted?  I guess that means we can‘t discuss a possible sentence, either.  Come on!  I‘m just saying if. 

Finally, I spoke with Michael Jackson‘s spiritual advisor, the Reverend Jesse Jackson. 

Gretchen Albright in San Diego, “I caught three interviews today with the reverend on other channels and then on your program.  Gee, if I didn‘t know better, I would think that the Reverend Jackson had been scripted.”  A number of you wrote in saying his words sounded familiar. 

Your e-mails abramsreport—one word -- @msnbc.com.  We go through them at the end of the show. 

“OH PLEAs!”—with the arrival of summertime, there are bound to be many picnics and family reunions.  But one family from Massachusetts redefines family reunion.  It seems that the only picnic this family will be having is at the jail‘s cafeteria.  Forty-one-year-old Joanna Snyder apparently wanted a summer vacation so she left her supermarket job April 26 in hopes of heading off to New Hampshire, but she didn‘t want to go alone. 

She convinced her 14-year-old daughter and 34-year-old friend James Hussey to join in on the trip.  All would have been fine if all three members of this reunion were allowed to leave Massachusetts.  See Snyder was an inmate at the Women in Transition Center, a prerelease facility, for a falsified document.  Her teenage daughter was in a residential program because of her mother‘s incarceration. 

And Hussey was under house arrest for check larceny.  Well, the three

·         quote—“bandits” skipped town to Grafton, New Hampshire, where they were found Tuesday night staying with relatives.  The police were tipped off to the triple breakout because of Hussey‘s electronic monitoring bracelet.  They were taken into custody without incident.  I guess a family that runs together stays together—in jail, that is. 

That does it for us tonight.  Thanks for watching.  Have a good night.


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