Guest: Burton Lee, Jim Mattox, Norman Miller, Vito Colucci, Jim Zamora, Ivan Golde, Marc Sano, Barry Levinson, John Wayne Bobbitt, Norm Clarke
RITA COSBY, HOST: Happy Valentine‘s Day, everybody. Tonight, teens out of control, and it‘s all caught on tape. But what may be even more surprising is where that tape ended up and why parents need to keep a closer eye on their kids.
And you could say his was the worst-case scenario when it comes to having a disagreements with your wife. John Wayne Bobbitt joins me live on Valentine‘s Day in his first interview since being cleared on recent charges.
But first, the bizarre story involving the vice president and him shooting his hunting partner now takes an even more dramatic turn. Tonight, doctors at a Texas hospital say Harry Whittington is back in intensive care after suffering a heart attack.
NBC‘s Janet Shamlian is LIVE AND DIRECT in Corpus Christi tonight. Janet, Harry was first reportedly in stable condition. What happened to him?
JANET SHAMLIAN, NBC CORRESPONDENT: Good evening, Rita. Well, doctors discovered early this morning that Whittington had an irregular heartbeat, so they ran some tests and they found that one of the pellets that was in his chest actually moved and lodged itself into his heart, and that caused the heart attack. He was moved back into intensive care and will now require another week of hospitalization.
It is a serious setback for the Austin attorney, whose original injuries were described as being only superficial. Now, asked if that pellet could move further into his heart and possibly endanger his life, doctors tonight say that it could happen, but they don‘t expect it to. They also talked to us about why and how they got the White House medical team involved early this morning.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETER BANKO, CHRISTUS SPOHN MEMORIAL HOSPITAL: One of our former cardiologists that is the partner of one of our cardiologists here is now in Washington and partners with some of the White House team in electrophysiology. So there are natural connections there. Physicians always want to get outside expertise, so in this case, they did literature review, as well as talked to other physician colleagues around the country, to make sure they were doing the right thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHAMLIAN: Doctors say while they treat a lot of gunshot wounds at this hospital, a case like this is very rare. And for the time being, they are not going to attempt to surgically go in and remove the pellet, but rather monitor its process. (SIC) For his part, the vice president—we heard from his office today for the first time since the accident Saturday night. His office released a statement, which says, in part, “The vice president wished Mr. Whittington well and asked if there was anything he needed. The vice president said he stood ready to assist. Mr. Whittington‘s spirits were good, but obviously, his situation deserves the careful monitoring that his doctors are providing.”
Doctors continue to attend to him here tonight. They will provide us with another briefing on his condition tomorrow at 1:00 o‘clock Eastern time—Rita.
COSBY: And Janet, two things. First off, what was the mood there? Because everybody sort of seemed optimistic that he was in the clear and out of here, that he took this turn. And second of all, how much longer is he going to be there in the hospital, do we think?
SHAMLIAN: He‘s going to be here at least another week, they say a week of monitoring. Now, whether he would like to go back to his hometown of Austin and be monitored there, doctors say they have not addressed that with him. But he‘s going to need to stay in the hospital at least seven days to see what happens to that pellet.
In terms of the mood here, it came as somewhat of a surprise because, again, his injuries were described as superficial. He was up and talking. That was on Monday. And then today, to hear that he‘d suffered a heart attack, things had become much more serious. And he‘s 78 years old. He‘s said to be in great condition, but still, a man of that age, you know, has factors and faces challenges someone younger would not.
COSBY: All right, Janet. Please keep us posted. Thank you very much.
Well, White House physicians are involved in Harry Whittington‘s treatment, but the big question is, Should they be? With us now is a man who‘s very familiar with the role of the White House doctor. He worked for the current president‘s father, President George Herbert Walker Bush. LIVE AND DIRECT is former White House physician Dr. Burton Lee. Dr. Lee, you know, should the White House doctors be this involved? Does it sound like maybe a conflict of interest?
DR. BURTON LEE, PRES. GEORGE H.W. BUSH‘S FORMER PHYSICIAN: No. I think they have a service that they can provide. I always took the position that if anybody that came under our umbrella became sick, that you‘d get the best possible doctor in that specialty to that location as fast as you could. And with a man who has been shot in the chest, he‘s got an intra-thoracic penetration, apparently, of this birdshot—I would—
Texas is rife with excellent cardiac surgeons and cardiologists. The medical school at the University of Texas is the biggest in the world.
COSBY: Now, Dr. Lee, I know you also have a model of a heart for us. Can you show us—you know, put that up, because I think it‘s important for a lot of folks are getting an education on this. What part of the heart was affected, Harry Whittington?
LEE: Well, I don‘t know. I don‘t know. They‘re talking—apparently, one of the pellets at least approximates the heart, so maybe it penetrated the pericardium, which means that it comes—it is somewhere in this area of the ventricle or the atrium and is stimulating it so that the man got atrial fibrillation.
But this is all conjecture. I don‘t have the facts, and the facts on this particular case, for the doctors involved, have to be extremely precise. And you want the best people evaluating the data that‘s coming out, which I‘m sure they have.
COSBY: Which I‘m sure they do. Now, when you were attending Bush, Sr.—I want to ask you a personal question. How emotional, how stressful is that, when you‘re handling anything to do with anything—in this case, obviously, it‘s someone who was shot by the vice president accidentally. When you‘re dealing with matters of the president or the vice president, what is that like for you as a doctor? Does that sort of up the ante for you of how much you guys make sure you do it right?
LEE: Well, Rita, I‘ll tell you, I tried to stress to our staff in the White House that your job first is to be—is medical. You‘re a doctor or nurse. The patient that you‘re treating is—you do it the same, whether it‘s somebody you find on the street or the president of the United States. You do it the best you possibly can in those medical circumstances. I never felt that—any stress from this because, Lord, I have all the support in the world to do relatively simple things with the president. I had very few challenges, as a doctor, while I was dealing with my friend, George Herbert Walker Bush. In this case...
COSBY: And we‘re looking at some wonderful pictures, too. You know, I want to play, if I could, real quick, Dr. Lee—sorry to interrupt you, but I want to get...
LEE: But this—can I just tell you...
COSBY: Go ahead.
LEE: This case is another dimension. You want to get hot on that fast. You want the DeBakey/Denton Cooley axis from Houston, you know, informed. You want the best possible people helicoptered down there. You have the ability to do that. And you want Mr. Whittington to know that he‘s got every single person who is the best in this country at his disposal. That‘s what I tried to transmit, anyway.
COSBY: You bet. You know, I want to play real quick for you comments because the press room, of course, in Washington, a lot of people are questioning the way that this news came out. I want to play a little clip of the White House briefing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID GREGORY, NBC CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Is it appropriate for the vice president to have waited 14 hours after the incident before he spoke with local law enforcement officials? And do you think that an average citizen would have been accorded that same amount of time before having to answer questions about a shooting incident?
SCOTT MCCLELLAN, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: That was what was arranged with the local law enforcement authorities. You ought to ask them that question.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: You know, Dr. Lee, what do you think should have been done differently, in hindsight?
LEE: Well, the way different White Houses are set up, each one is quite unique. Each one has its own little variations in chains of command. And each one does something different. The way we would have done it is we would have taken care of Mr. Whittington. We would have settled the legal and police ramifications as fast we could, and we would have simultaneously put in phone calls to Marlon Fitzwater—who I have a very nice picture that I gave you there, with Helen Thomas of the White House press corps. We would immediately call Marlon Fitzwater and call the chief of staff.
All of this would have been done in the first hour.
COSBY: Dr. Lee, thank you very much for your insights. Love to have you back. Thank you very much.
And while doctors are optimistic about Harry Whittington‘s recovery, what‘s at stake for the vice president if Whittington‘s health takes a fatal turn? LIVE AND DIRECT tonight is Jim Mattox. He‘s a former Texas attorney general and also a long-time friend of Harry Whittington. Mr. Mattox, first of all, what have you heard about his condition? And I‘m sure that you were just very saddened to hear, as all of us were, that he had this heart attack.
JIM MATTOX, FORMER TEXAS ATTORNEY GENERAL: Well, first, of course, I want to wish Harry the best, and I‘m sure he‘s getting the best treatment possible. But I‘ve not heard anything more than what‘s being provided through the news media and what you‘ve just heard.
COSBY: You know, tell us a little bit about the man. You know, we‘ve just gotten to know a little bit about him in the last few days or so. Were you surprised that he was out even hunting?
MATTOX: Well, I didn‘t know Harry in that context particularly, but Harry is a tough-willed individual. He‘s a very mild-mannered man. He‘s a long-time Republican. I‘m a strong Democrat, but I respected him. He‘s not the kind of person that would wear his feelings on his sleeve, but—
Republican feelings on his sleeve, so to speak. But I knew him in the context of working with him as chairman of the Department of Corrections, presiding over our prison system, and also as chairman of the bond review panel that we have here in the state of Texas. He‘s a strong businessman, a shrewd investor, a soft-spoken man, but he‘s tough as steel, too. His quiet mannerisms really cover his tenacity, which he‘s been proving lately in some litigation here with our—the city of Austin.
COSBY: You bet. You‘re also a former Texas attorney general, and the
big question tonight, as we all heard, as he took this turn for the worse -
if something were to happen to him, if he had passed or something, under law, what could happen to the vice president? And one of the options I was seeing is negligent homicide. I want to put up on the screen how it‘s described under Texas law. “The risk must be of such a nature and degree that the failure to perceive it constitutes a gross deviation from the standard of care that an ordinary person would exercise.”
What does that mean, and how could that apply in this case, Mr.
MATTOX: Well, first let me say it‘s unlikely that any prosecutor in that part of the world, where you‘ve got ranchers and farmers and people that hunt all the time—they are the ones who would make up a jury. It‘s unlikely that anyone would choose to prosecute the vice president for criminally negligent homicide.
COSBY: The other thing, Mr. Mattox, too, also, the sheriff‘s department came out and said yesterday this was an accident. Does that also obviously exonerate him from any responsibility, too?
MATTOX: Well, I think that that probably indicate the attitude of the witnesses that were there. But the fact is, is any time a homicide is committed, it‘s either—and you look at the possibility of negligence being involved, under the law and under the wording of the statute, the vice president could be charged. He could face up to two years in one of our state jails. He could—if they found that the actions were done with a dangerous weapon, which they were, theoretically, he could get 10 years in the penitentiary. But those are highly unlikely things to happen.
In all probability the—with all the witnesses, the local prosecutor would—even if the worst happened, would probably say that it was an accident, that it was perhaps partially Harry‘s fault, perhaps it was not. They would look at all the facts, but it‘d be unlikely that any kind of prosecution would take place.
COSBY: Mr. Mattox, thank you very much. Good to have you with us.
MATTOX: Thank you.
COSBY: And we appreciate it.
And coming up, the Wayne Gretzky gambling scandal. Did Gretzky actually have a legal multi-million-dollar line of credit for gambling? It‘s all coming up, and that‘s not all.
Still ahead: The same Web site that apparently allowed some killers to meet up with their victims now has a new fight on its hands. We‘ll show you the stunning videotape of what some teens did on Myspace.com.
And the Massachusetts murders. Was the gun that killed Rachel Entwistle and her baby used the very next day by Rachel‘s own father? Could it blow the case against the prime suspect, Rachel‘s husband, Neil?
Plus, a LIVE AND DIRECT Valentine‘s exclusive. John Wayne Bobbitt joins me for his first interview since being cleared in a domestic dispute. Will he ever be lucky in love? That‘s coming up.
COSBY: Well, tonight, a stunning turn in the Entwistle murders. The man accused of killing his wife and baby may have gotten a big break thanks to his own father-in-law. It turns out that Rachel Entwistle‘s stepfather may have unknowingly used the murder weapon one day after the cold-blooded killings of his daughter and granddaughter. That could spell trouble for prosecutors who say that Neil Entwistle committed the murder. And tonight, we are learning that Neil is expected to be arraigned this Thursday.
I‘m joined now by Norm Miller. He‘s a reporter for “The Metrowest Daily News” in Massachusetts, and also private investigator Vito Colucci.
Norm, let me start with this development. What have you heard about the father-in-law using the gun? Exactly when?
NORMAN MILLER, “METROWEST DAILY NEWS”: Well, apparently, he used it on the 21st, January 21, the day after Rachel and Lillian was killed. He went target shooting. It was the first time he had used the gun since this past September.
COSBY: You know, and that brings up a point, Norm. It‘s the first point—first time he‘s used it since September. Is there any evidence to show that Neil Entwistle knew it was going to be used the next day?
MILLER: Nothing like that has come out at all yet. Neil had shot the gun before with the father, but there‘s no evidence that he knew the father was planning on shooting the gun himself.
COSBY: Vito, let me bring you in because, of course, the father-in-law, now we know, used the gun after the murders, that—in addition to this, though, that the DA has some evidence. It has that—Neil‘s DNA was found on the handle, Rachel‘s was found on the muzzle, which is probably the most significant. Does this damage or muddy the waters in the forensic case at all, Vito?
VITO COLUCCI, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: I don‘t think so because the
ballistic test on the gun, if that is proved that that is the murder weapon
and then, of course, you‘ve got the back-spatter DNA which shows Rachel‘s blood on it. And you know, Martha Coakley has already done all of this, OK, so she already knew that the gun was used the next day by the father-in-law. I don‘t think it changes it at all, quite honestly. A lot of times, it‘s very difficult, Rita, to get prints, fingerprints, off the butt, the handle of any gun. So I don‘t think it‘s going to—it makes for interesting TV. It gives the defense a little bit something to yell about in court, but I don‘t think it‘s going to change things.
COSBY: What about the fact we also know now, Vito, that a lot of people went into the crime scene? Because remember, they didn‘t know that she was dead. They were looking for, you know, a missing person and baby, at this point. Does that muddy the waters at all?
COLUCCI: Well, you know, I‘ve said it on your show a couple weeks ago, and it was just my opinion that I thought that if they would have found the bodies much earlier, I think it could have helped, definitely, with the timeline, rather than a defense attorney parading all the police officers and the family and friends that looked in the room to maybe say there wasn‘t the bodies there at the time or something crazy of that nature, you know?
COSBY: Norm, we know that now on Thursday, we‘re hearing he‘s coming back tomorrow to the States, to Boston, and then the arraignment‘s going to be on Thursday. Walk us through what‘s going to happen in court on Thursday in your area.
MILLER: Well, what‘ll first happen, he‘ll be brought up from the holding bay. A lawyer will be assigned to him, at least for the arraignment purposes. The clerk will read the charges. An automatic plea of not guilty will be entered on Neil‘s behalf. Then the prosecutor, seeking bail or no-bail, will read their version of the facts of the case. The defense will have a chance to speak. And the judge will set a next date an appearance. That most likely won‘t happen, at least at district court level, because they don‘t really have authority over murders in Massachusetts. That would have to go through the superior court.
COSBY: You know, Norm, what‘s the mood of the community? When I was up there last week, I mean, they are so angry at this man. And now to hear some of the mounting evidence, what‘s just the sentiments, now that he‘s coming back onto your soil?
MILLER: Well, I think people are just waiting to see what happens, especially with all the paperwork that has come out through the courts the last couple days. A lot of people are just wondering if he‘s going to say anything or just what‘s going to happen in court.
COSBY: Well, we‘ll all be watching. Norm, thank you. And Vito, we‘re going to have you, I know—stick around—in a little bit.
And now to another murder case that we‘ve been following, this time in northern California. Gruesome testimony today for 17-year-old Scott Dyleski. He is the teenager accused of viciously bludgeoning Pamela Vitale, the wife of prominent defense attorney Dan Horowitz. For the first time today, Horowitz came face to face with the young man accused of brutally murdering his own wife.
Joining me now is “San Francisco Chronicle” reporter Jim Zamora. Jim, first of all, how did Dyleski look? What was sort of the mood and his demeanor in court?
JIM ZAMORA, “SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE”: He did not look emotional at all. He pretty much—looked sometimes at the people testifying, looked over at the judge, but pretty much kept his eyes to himself or looked straight ahead. He looked pretty calm. A lot of people there were struck by how small he is, how young he looks. That really came out. To see this guy in a courtroom, he just doesn‘t look like a big, burly, violent guy, and that was striking to many people there.
COSBY: You know, I know a number of people took the stand today, including a neighbor. Tell us why that was significant.
ZAMORA: Well, the neighbor gave some fairly significant testimony, is she talked about hearing Daniel Horowitz screaming when he found his wife‘s body, and just screaming—she described it as sounding—at first, she didn‘t know what it was, as if it were a wounded animal or something. Then she recognized it because here it is in this quiet canyon. And the house is pretty far away. It‘s more than 100 yards away, and Daniel is just sobbing and screaming. And that was—that was—that was pretty compelling stuff.
COSBY: Also a computer expert...
COSBY: Tell us about the computer expert.
ZAMORA: Well, much of the other testimony in this—because the only people there were Pamela Vitale and the person that killed her, in order for them to present their case that Scott Dyleski committed this crime, the vast majority of the testimony involved police officers and police research people and everyone who came on there to establish the scene that happened because you don‘t have eyewitness testimony.
So one of the things we—it is—it‘s believed now that about 10:15 or so that morning is the last time that Pamela Vitale was alive, and that can be best determined because she was using the computer at that time. And she—it‘s believed that she was on the computer when her killer came to the home. And the prosecution is saying that Scott Dyleski came to that home, interrupted her when she was on the computer, and shortly thereafter was the struggle in which she was killed.
COSBY: And Jim, you know, also, there‘s a friend who actually turned
Scott Dyleski in, sort of in exchange for getting his own, like, computer -
you know, fraud issues sort of dropped, the credit card fraud. When are we going to hear from that guy? Do you think he‘ll take the stand?
ZAMORA: There‘s a pretty good chance he‘ll take the stand. But in California, when you have a preliminary hearing, this is just a hearing before a judge to determine if there‘s enough evidence to put Scott Dyleski on trial. So sometimes the prosecution puts out a witness list, but if they feel that the strongest parts of their case—the DNA, the forensic evidence, the circumstantial evidence, that—that‘s enough to convince a judge that Scott Dyleski should be put on trial for this murder, they might not put on every single witness, particularly witnesses—the friend—somebody who‘s been friendly with Scott Dyleski in the past. They night not—that way, they wouldn‘t have to put them on the stand twice.
COSBY: Yes, maybe save him for later on, when you need him there.
Jim, thank you very much. We appreciate it.
And joining us now is defense attorney Ivan Golde. He‘s a close friend of Daniel Horowitz. He was also in the courtroom today. You know, Ivan, Dan also spoke with my colleague, Dan Abrams, earlier today. I want to play a little clip because this was clearly a really emotional day for him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DANIEL HOROWITZ, HUSBAND OF MURDERED WOMAN: I think that the experience of sitting through a proceeding where you just have to hear about my wife, Pamela—where I have to hear that—is painful.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: You know, Ivan, how tough was it for Dan to be there in court today and look this kid in the eye?
IVAN GOLDE, FRIEND AND COLLEAGUE OF DAN HOROWITZ: It wasn‘t easy, Rita. It was very difficult. This is very sad. This is very tragic, not only for Dan, but for the Vitale family, even for Scott Dyleski‘s family. It‘s just a very, very tragic situation. But everyone is strong. Dan is strong. The Vitale family is strong. They‘re hanging in there. They‘re in court. That‘s where they should be. They‘re OK, Rita. Dan‘s OK. He really is.
COSBY: What were your impressions of seeing Scott Dyleski? You know, one of the things we just heard from the reporter, Jim Zamora, is how small he looked. You know, here‘s this young kid. It just makes the case so much more surprising and shocking.
GOLDE: What struck me is it‘s such a senseless tragedy. You‘ve got a 17-year-old kid sitting at counsel table. His life may, if he‘s proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, may be basically over, incarcerated for the rest of his life. The Vitale family, Dan Horowitz, they‘ve gone through this tragedy. It‘s so senseless! It‘s just—why? That‘s what I say to myself. Why? I see him there. I see the Vitale family. I see Dan Horowitz. Why? Why did this happen? That‘s what struck me.
COSBY: And Ivan, he had such good relations, even helped this kid and his mother, in, like, a legal case. It is. It‘s outrageous. You know, Ivan...
COSBY: ... real quick, will Dan take the stand? Is it expected that he‘ll testify? Is he ready if that (INAUDIBLE)
GOLDE: No, that will not happen. I‘m not positive, I haven‘t seen the witness list, but I would bet anything that will not happen. Daniel Horowitz will not testify at the preliminary hearing. At the trial, he will testify.
COSBY: Ivan, we‘ll be following this closely. Thank you very much.
We appreciate it.
GOLDE: And Rita, can I say one quick thing?
GOLDE: Very quickly? I‘d like to thank you, thank your show. It‘s because of shows like yours this case got out in the media, and that‘s why a tip came in and that‘s why this suspect was apprehended. Thank you, Rita.
COSBY: I‘m glad that we could help, and I‘m glad whatever little part we could to help bring some peace to this. Thank you very much, Ivan. We appreciate it.
And now on to another case. Courtroom drama as the man accused of kidnapping and killing an 11-year-old girl makes a dramatic plea for his life. Joseph Smith was convicted of kidnapping Carlie Brucia from outside a carwash in Sarasota, Florida. The abduction was caught by a surveillance camera.
In court today, Smith showed tears and remorse, and he blamed his heinous crime on mental problems and drug use. He begged for life behind bars instead of death.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSEPH SMITH, CONVICTED OF MURDERING CARLIE BRUCIA: I want to tell you and Carlie‘s family and my family and this community how very sorry I am for this terrible crime. Every day I think about what I did, and I beg God for forgiveness. I will continue to think about the pain I caused for the rest of my life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: And a jury recommended death for Smith. A judge is going to make a final decision on March 15.
And still ahead, everybody: Millions of people use Myspace.com to find friends and even lovers, but some teenagers are in hot water for using the site to show off a sick game, and it‘s all caught on tape. And later, on Valentine‘s Day, a man who knows the pains of love better than most men. John Wayne Bobbitt is going to join me for an exclusive interview, and he‘s coming up.
ANNOUNCER: From MSNBC world headquarters, here is Rita Cosby.
COSBY: And tonight, a disturbing pastime has some teenagers in big trouble. They got caught after putting the videotape of their violent brawling on an Internet Web site that‘s been in the news before, MySpace.com.
Kristen Welker of NBC station WCAU in Philly has the story.
KRISTEN WELKER, REPORTER, WCAU (voice-over): This is the disturbing video that was placed on the Internet. We‘ve covered the faces of those involved because they‘re juveniles. It shows two kids viciously kicking and punching each other and a slew of other youngsters cheering them on. A second video shows two other kids doing the same.
SHERRY WEATHERBY, PARENT: I‘m actually just sick to my stomach right now thinking about that.
WELKER: The Web site where the video appears, MySpace.com, the popular teen site where kids often place their pictures and personal information. Police say two of the young sisters are seventh graders at Lumberton Middle School. The two others are in the same age range at other area schools. They all appear to be willing participants. Today, parents at Lumberton expressed disbelief.
WEATHERBY: You wouldn‘t think that it would happen some place like this. But I wouldn‘t put anything past anybody.
BILL STEINAGLEM, PARENT: I believe, from being in the software business, that parents should monitor that a little better.
WELKER: Lumberton police say the fighting took place about a week and a half ago at a location within Lumberton Township but outside of school grounds. Then the kids put the video onto MySpace.
Apparently, a parent at Lumberton Middle School got wind of the incident. A parent told a school official, who in turn went to police. Police were thankful for the information, but now have this warning...
DET. NICHOLAS PEDITTO, LUMBERTON POLICE: Someone eventually is going to get hurt seriously if the parents don‘t take a bigger part in what their children are doing on the Internet.
WELKER: Lumberton students say the Web video has been the talk of the school and many make it clear they would never copy this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I wouldn‘t want to hurt anybody else, and I don‘t want them hurting me.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Certain kids are very senseless.
COSBY: And joining me now is Lumberton Police Chief Marc Sano and also with us is Vito Colucci.
Chief Sano, what kind of charges could these kids face?
MARC SANO, LUMBERTON POLICE CHIEF: We‘re looking at disorderly persons charges for fighting.
COSBY: And how serious is that? What could they—what, in terms of punishment?
SANO: They could be upwards of jail time, substantial fines, probation, things like that.
COSBY: Why do you think they actually posted it on the Web, Chief?
Why do you think they went to that degree?
SANO: I think this is sort of a shock factor involved. They wanted to get their faces on the Internet to maybe show off to friends and other people that are on MySpace.
COSBY: And how did this come about? How did you find out about it?
What, it was a parent, right?
SANO: A parent had located this on the Internet and then they had contacted the school. Our school resource officer brought it to our attentions, and the detectives followed up on it from there.
COSBY: And, Chief, could this have turned into something even bigger, if you guys had not spotted this and been notified?
SANO: That‘s our major concern, is that the acts of violence may increase or, if this was left unchecked, things could have been much worse or could develop into something worse than it was.
COSBY: And, Vito, you know, we‘ve talked about MySpace.com. You and I were just talking about this a few days ago. What is happening on these sites? Why are they so vulnerable, particularly youngsters?
COLUCCI: Well, it‘s becoming the most popular site, obviously, for kids. We already know it‘s the most popular site for predators.
Now, the problem with all of this, like the detective said on your piece there before, if the parents don‘t start monitoring this, this site is going to get worse and worse. It‘s becoming so popular across the country, every kid wants to be on MySpace. It‘s just going to lead to more bad stuff.
If they keep letting your children have computers in their bedrooms, it has to be in the area where the parents can monitor it. You know, it can‘t be in a kid‘s bedroom. If the parents go out, they shouldn‘t even allow the kids, a lot of times, to go on the computer until they‘re home.
They have to monitor this. This is going to get out of hand, I‘m telling you, this MySpace. And, you know, on my end, too, for law enforcement...
COSBY: Yes, because you use it, actually, for research, right? Tell us about that. It‘s helpful in that way.
COLUCCI: That‘s right, because I‘ve monitored some of my suspects in different big cases that I‘ve just finished, so it‘s been a good site for police and law enforcement people to go into, you know, to be able to get evidence. And it‘s helped me.
So you have the good, but then you have the very bad in this, too, Rita. And, unfortunately, kids copycat. I think it‘s going to get worse and worse. It has to be monitored. It falls on the parents.
COSBY: You bet. And you know what? Let me put some tips up, if I could, on the screen, because there are certain regulations. Of course, it‘s not always followed, but predominantly you have to be 14 years of age to use MySpace.
Obviously, never post any personal information on the site. If you choose to meet someone, meet them in a public area. If you feel like you‘re in danger, contact the local law enforcement agency.
You know, I mean, a lot of these things have sort of been out there, Vito. Why aren‘t kids getting the message, especially when you see some of the things that were, like, on “Dateline,” and things that we‘ve run about these sexual predators just getting your information?
COLUCCI: Because it‘s not that easy. Number three on there says, if you choose to meet someone, meet them in a public area. Predators will pose as another kid, Bobby, say, “Meet me at the mall.” The kid goes to the mall, and I‘m Bobby‘s father. Bobby‘s in the car waiting, or something to that nature.
So it‘s not as easy. There‘s a lot of stuff going on that has to be -
and, again, a lot of it falls on the parents. A lot of kids come home, there‘s no parents around, for whatever reason, for several hours. So it just—you know, unfortunately, it‘s getting worse and worse. And this thing has taken off over the last several months.
COSBY: Yes, sadly, Vito. You know, what is the community reacting, Chief, in this particular case with the brawl?
SANO: I think that the parents are embarrassed because of this occurring. I think there‘s a wide concern that this doesn‘t escalate into something larger, and that‘s what our concern is.
We‘re currently looking into also finding out the charges for the individuals that are spurring this on, that antagonize the fights and then filming it. That‘s as much of a problem as the actual children that are fighting.
COSBY: All right. Well, guys, both of you, thank you very much. I hope parent are watching—and kids, especially—tonight.
And on LIVE & DIRECT tonight, when cops are scouring the nation looking for dangerous thugs, we want to let you know. Tonight, an “All-Points Bulletin” that we‘re watching very carefully.
Police are on the lookout for 27-year-old John Manard. He escaped from a Kansas prison on Sunday. He allegedly got help from his friend, 48-year-old Toby Young, seen with Manard in this photo. They‘re considered armed and dangerous.
Now, Manard was convicted of two counts of murder. Police say he knew his alleged accomplice, a volunteer in a prison program where inmates trained dogs. If you know anything about John Manard or Toby Young, have any information on this case, please call the Lansing, Kansas, correctional facility. The number is there on your screen. It is 913-727-3235. Again, 913-727-3235.
And still ahead, everyone, the Wayne Gretzky gambling scandal. Tonight, a report that he‘s got a big line of credit for some legal betting. Could that affect the investigation?
And talk about bad luck in love. John Wayne Bobbitt joins me LIVE & DIRECT for his first interview since being cleared of a domestic dispute. He‘s coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WAYNE GRETZKY, NHL COACH, PHOENIX COYOTES: I said what I said a week ago. I‘m not involved. And, quite frankly, that‘s the last time I‘m going to talk about it. I‘ve stood forward each and every day. I‘ll talk hockey all day long.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Hockey all-star Wayne Gretzky arrived in Torino today and is trying to keep the focus on his quest to lead the Canadian hockey team to Olympic gold and not on the investigation into possible illegal betting that could point to him or his wife.
New tonight, a report that Gretzky and his wife have a legal gambling credit line that runs up to a million bucks. Joining me now is Norm Clarke. He‘s a columnist for the “Las Vegas Review-Journal.”
Norm, tell us about, you know, the Gretzkys and Vegas. How big of a line, how often are they gambling?
NORM CLARKE, COLUMNIST, “LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL”: Well, my source says that Wayne is in here less than 100 times. She is less than that, considerably less than what he‘s gambling. He‘s got at least a $1 million line which allows him to bet up to $25,000 per hand.
COSBY: And what kind of games are they playing?
CLARKE: Blackjack, for the most part. She loves to play blackjack for about $1,000 per hand.
COSBY: You know, I want to show a statement. This is Janet Jones you‘re talking about, the wife. She made this statement just a few days ago. “At no time did I ever place a wager on my husband‘s behalf. Other than the occasional horse race, my husband does not bet on sports.”
Does this sort of paint a little bit different picture, that‘s a big gambler? He sort of portrayed that he really doesn‘t do gambling at all.
CLARKE: Well, I think that she was missing the point there. I think that betting $5,000 on the coin flip of the Super Bowl screams, “I‘ve got a problem.” And I think that she‘s staying away from her own culpability with that quote.
COSBY: Yes, some people could say it‘s a bit of a stark contrast to what we‘re hearing.
CLARKE: Yes. You know, I wasn‘t real surprised, because I know that I‘ve had a number of sightings in here among the athletes. Michael Jordan is one of the highest, the big-time players, but Wayne Gretzky falls in the category of a whale.
If you bet that much, you‘re considered a whale. And to stay in the MGM Grand Mansion, you have to bet up to $250,000 over a two- or three-day period to get all the comps. And they have been in their regularly.
COSBY: And, Norm, real quick, how‘s his gambling habits? Is he a winner, or does he lose?
CLARKE: Well, he‘s down $2 million, according to my source, and she‘s around $200,000.
COSBY: In the hole?
CLARKE: In the hole, yes.
COSBY: So they‘re not the best gamblers, it sounds like at this point.
CLARKE: No, no.
COSBY: Norm, please keep us posted. Thank you very much, really interesting stuff.
CLARKE: Thanks, Rita.
COSBY: And, of course, we‘ll see how this affects the investigation into the questions of illegal gambling, very different than this.
And there‘s a lot more coming up here on MSNBC tonight. Let‘s check in with Joe Scarborough now with a preview—Joe?
JOE SCARBOROUGH, MSNBC HOST: Rita, thanks so much.
As you know, things continue to get more and more intense at the White House by the hour. Of course, White House spokesman Scott McClellan absolutely slammed by the White House press corps.
NBC‘s own David Gregory taking the lead, so aggressive in his questioning that, when they got off camera, there was actually a very testy change between the two, with David—who we all know, he‘s a great guy—feeling like McClellan had talked down to him. He called him a jerk. McClellan shot back at him that he needed to calm down.
We‘re going to be talking to David Gregory, who‘s going to give us the inside story on that exchange and also what‘s going on in what many people believe in the White House press corps is a deliberate cover-up. And, of course, the mood darkens by the hour, because the man that Dick Cheney shot is not doing very well, is still in the hospital, and some are concerned may take a turn for the worse.
We‘re going to be talking about that and all the political angles to this and much, much more in just a few minutes when “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” begins.
That‘s it, Rita. Thanks. Back to you.
COSBY: And, Joe, I bet you‘re going to be talking about the next story that we have coming up. It‘s John Wayne Bobbitt and his private parts. Remember, Joe?
SCARBOROUGH: Yes, you know, Rita, we were going to do that for a full hour, but this whole Cheney thing came up, you know? So we‘ll let you do it.
COSBY: All right, keep an eye out, Joe. Thanks so much. We‘ll be tuning in a little bit.
SCARBOROUGH: All right. Thanks.
COSBY: And still ahead, his painful marital problems were broadcast around the world. Tonight, John Wayne Bobbitt, Joe‘s best friends, joins me live for a Valentine‘s Day exclusive. I‘ll ask him whether things have gotten a little better. Wait until you hear what he‘s up to now. That‘s coming up next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We, the jury, find the defendant, Lorena Lenora Bobbitt, not guilty of malicious wounding, as charged in the indictment, by reason of insanity.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Well tonight, a LIVE & DIRECT Valentine‘s Day exclusive, John Wayne Bobbitt, the man who nearly lost his private part when his wife, Lorena, who you just saw, cut it off.
In 1994, she was cleared of the charges by reason of insanity. From his changes in careers to brushes with the law, John Wayne Bobbitt‘s every move has been in the news. And he was just acquitted of domestic battery and joins me live along with his attorney, Barry Levinson.
Great to have both of you guys, on appropriately, I guess, Valentine‘s Day. You know, John, how tough is it for you, living with, you know, the stigma of a guy who had his private part cut off?
JOHN WAYNE BOBBITT, ACQUITTED OF DOMESTIC BATTERY: It‘s not easy. I get a lot of same questions all the time about what happened, and, you know, how I feel, and, you know, all the regular questions. Because, I don‘t know, I know it was a really interesting case and it was very controversial. And I don‘t know, just get kind of tired after a while.
COSBY: I was going to say, are you surprised how fascinated people were with that case and all the questions you still get now after all these years?
BOBBITT: Yes. You know, I don‘t know, people are interested in that
kind of thing. It‘s controversial, and it‘s sexual-related thing, and has
a lot to do with a relationship. People are involved—you know, people -
you know, I didn‘t understand why she did it. You know, I still don‘t.
BARRY LEVINSON, ATTORNEY FOR JOHN WAYNE BOBBITT: Well, John‘s infamous. I mean, basically—I mean, even my kids know who he is. I mean, he‘s the butt of even school kids‘ jokes, which is horrible, but, I mean, it is the way it is, right, John?
COSBY: ... a lot of husbands come over to you, John, and say, “Oh,” you know, “that could have been me”?
BOBBITT: Yes. A lot of people ask me to see it, you know?
I show some people. Like one time, I showed this one guy, and he couldn‘t get over—he just freaked out. And he started doing this dance like—you know, holding his groin. He couldn‘t believe it. I don‘t know.
COSBY: How is your love life now, by the way? Because I know you‘ve had some operations. How is your love life now?
BOBBITT: Oh, I‘m not seeing anybody right now. I‘m kind of afraid of women right now, I think. I just got out of a relationship with my current wife. Actually, my attorney just filed the papers...
LEVINSON: Yes, he‘s now divorced.
COSBY: Are you now officially divorced? I know that was in the works. Is it official now?
LEVINSON: Yes, it‘s official.
BOBBITT: Yes, it‘s official I‘m divorced. But I don‘t know. I didn‘t know what I was getting into when I met my ex-wife now. I didn‘t see her true colors. I mean, I don‘t know. I should have went through the application process. Actually, I should have had Barry do a background investigation, but...
COSBY: Well, both of you, stick with us, if you could. We‘re going to go to a quick break. We‘re going to talk about your legal problems and your love problems when we come back. More with John Wayne Bobbitt and his attorney, right after the break.
COSBY: And welcome back. We‘re joined again by John Wayne Bobbitt and his attorney, Barry Levinson. They‘re joining us tonight for an exclusive interview.
John, you just got acquitted, I know, of domestic battery, but you‘ve had a string, you know, just list of things. Let me go through. You got this recent acquittal, of course. Then you were also cleared, same thing, in 2004. 2003, you were convicted of battery. You had to go to prison for your role in a 1999 theft.
COSBY: What‘s going on here with you, John?
COSBY: Why are you having all these run-ins with the law? We got all these mug shots of you. I think we‘ve got, like, seven or eight different mug shots.
BOBBITT: It‘s the same girl. I was on probation. It was a probation violation, probation violation.
LEVINSON: He was on probation. And then basically, she called in—she called it in for him for domestic battery. And he didn‘t want to cause any problems, so he pled guilty to a crime he didn‘t commit. So when he pled guilty, he broke his probation. Then he went to prison.
And when he was in prison, then when he finally got out, he was still dealing with this domestic battery that he did. And then the last one, then she called the police again on him. And I think that was in 2004. We got him acquitted of that one.
And then—no, that was—was it 2000? Yes, it 2004. And then in 2005, just this last time. So he‘s been acquitted twice, you know, for different offenses that she says that he‘s done when he never had done it.
COSBY: Now, John, you‘ve been married, what, now three times. Have you spoken to Lorena? Everyone‘s wondering. When was the last time you talked to her?
BOBBITT: I keep telling everybody it was June 22, 1993. The last
thing I said to her was that I wanted a divorce. And that night, June 20th
no, early morning, June 23rd, is when she got mad and attacked me.
COSBY: And that was the last time you spoke to her and, obviously, we know what happened. What are you doing now? What‘s happened since the infamous incident? What have you been doing with your life?
BOBBITT: Oh, I don‘t know, just trying to be a regular guy, I guess.
I, you know, drive trucks. I‘ve got a Class A license.
I do, you know, some appearances here and there and just—I had a short adult film career, but I promised my parents I wouldn‘t do that anymore. I got other offers to do adult films and stuff, but I always turned them down.
We‘re working on some other things, like, doing some TV shows, you know...
LEVINSON: He just filmed a documentary that aired, actually, in Great Britain.
COSBY: Any word about a reality show, John, at all? Any word about a reality show?
BOBBITT: Yes, we were thinking about that, you know, doing a Las Vegas-based reality TV show, you know, gambling and girls, you know, getting dressed up to go to, you know, to work, you know, cocktailing or working at the, you know, cat houses and stuff like that. You know, we‘ve got some ideas that we‘re playing around with like that, you know, a big house with a reality deal.
COSBY: And we just have a few seconds left. Really quick. What‘s your advice for folks on Valentine‘s Day? Real quick.
BOBBITT: Well, I‘d let the other guys know—I mean, you know, just stay true to each other, and communicate, and just love each other. Oh, yes. All you single guys out there, make sure you go through an application process. I got women, too. I mean, you want to make sure—you got to the background investigation on the people you‘re meeting and dating...
COSBY: We‘ve got to go. You guys, we‘ve got to go.
BOBBITT: ... before you get serious.
COSBY: We‘ve got to go. Thank you very much. And happy Valentine‘s Day.
LEVINSON: By, Rita.
COSBY: Good to see you both.
And that does for LIVE & DIRECT.
COSBY: Now to Joe.
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