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'Rita Cosby Live & Direct' for April 27

Guests: Jayne Weintraub, Pam Bondi, John Bourlan, Malik Zulu Shabazz, Karen Simons, Ed Miller, Susan Levy, Kimberly Caldwell, Rosanna Tavarez

RITA COSBY, HOST:  Thanks so much, Joe.  And good evening, everybody.  We have a big show tonight.  I go a few rounds with the king of all media, Howard Stern.  A rare interview with the superstar, radio shock jock.  Wait until you hear what he says about Tom Cruise, Angelina Jolie, and even the new move “United 93.” 

And in 2001 the story of missing Washington, D.C. intern, Chandra Levy, captivated the nation‘s headlines for months.  Now it is five years later, the mystery surrounding Chandra‘s murder remains unsolved, her parents speak out tonight in an exclusive interview.  They‘re going to join me live.

But first, just in to LIVE AND DIRECT, tonight, new developments in the Duke rape scandal.  We are just learning that the accuser in this case has reported being raped before, 10 years ago.  Rucks Russell of NBC affiliate, WNCN is in Durham. 

Rucks, this could be a twist in the case, but you‘ve talked to the family, right?  What do you have? 

RUCKS RUSSELL, WNCN TV, REPORTER:  Well, I just came from the mom and dad‘s house.  The accuser‘s mother and father and they told me this story that dates back more than 10 years ago involving their daughter when she reported that she had been raped by three other men.  Now one of these men was a man she was dating at the time, the other two were his friends.  According to this story the parents tell me that their daughter was held against her will in a house belonging to her then boyfriend‘s family and that‘s when the assault took place. 

Now police responded, there was a complaint, but charges were never filed.  The daughter did not want to press on with charges because she was afraid because these guys had apparently threatened her life.  Now following this incident she became extremely depressed, she began to lose a tremendous amount of weight and that is when her parents grew concerned over her and thought—sought the help of a psychiatrist.  They said their daughter had become suicidal.  This in no way diminishes, in any shape or form, the parent‘s faith and confidence that they have in their daughter related to the allegations surrounding the lacrosse team in this house, though. 

COSBY:  And Rucks, tell me also, did the family know about this allegation before, the mother, the father? 

RUSSELL:  Well, that‘s where the story becomes quite interesting.  The mother knew all of the facts surrounding this incident.  The father didn‘t really know about any of this until a day or two ago.  He knew something had happened about a decade ago, he didn‘t know that it involved an alleged rape.  Now I asked the mom why this was kept from the father, and she says that at the time they were concerned that he would become so enraged by this that he would probably drive in his own car and head up to where this happened.  He weighs about 120 pounds soaking wet, so they didn‘t want their father to get involved in this.  They thought he would wind up being injured. 

COSBY:  And Rucks, are they worried how this is going to be perceived now in this case? 

RUSSELL:  Well, they—if they are they‘re not showing any signs of that.  I mean, again, they insist that this has nothing to do with these allegations.  They continue to stand by their daughter 100 percent.  It is important to note, though, Rita, that just this week defense attorneys filed a motion in court to try and gain access to all of the accuser‘s prior medical records, prior criminal history dating back to her childhood.  Now defense a attorney says that they had no idea of any of this when they made that filing, but certainly this is the kind of information that they would be quite interested in. 

COSBY:  You bet.  Rucks, please keep us posted if you get any more details come back to us later on in the show. 

Now, let‘s bring in Tampa prosecutor, Pam Bondi and also criminal defense attorney, Jayne Weintraub. 

Jayne, we just heard from Rucks.  And also, we also have John Bourlan, too, we weren‘t sure we‘d get you up right away, but John we do have you here—defense attorney, good one there, who is in Durham. 

Jayne, let me start with you, we just heard from Rucks that then it was a boyfriend, he and some other individuals, does that change the perception than her just randomly claiming gang rape? 

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY:  Well, it‘s not that she randomly claimed it, I mean, the defense is going to move to make it admissible saying that it‘s a pattern of conduct to make false claims.  The procession, of course, will try and block it, saying it‘s too remote in time, and perhaps this will backfire in the defense.  If I were a defense lawyer in this case, Rita, I would take it real slowly until I had all the facts and evidence.  Look what happened to them, they have mud all over these faces with these digital photos and the timeline exploding.  They need to stop and evaluate the evidence and assess it.  This is not admissible evidence in court. 

COSBY:  You know, John, in fact I talked to the defense, here, right before the show, one of the members, and he said, you know, of course, they‘re looking into the character, and they said this was consistent with what we knew about her so far, meaning, you know, we‘ve felt that there were some things in her background that they were looking for.  Fair game or not—John Bourlan.

JOHN BOURLAN, DEFENSE ATTORNEY:  Yes, hi.  Yeah, Rita, I don‘t know.  In my opinion, I think the defense is making a huge mistake by brining up this issue.  Primarily because, in our society, women as a general rule, are very reluctant to report the crime of rape.  It‘s most likely one of the most underreported crimes of all of the seven index crimes.  And let‘s look at this, she didn‘t want to proceed.  Why?  You can only imagine what would happen as a 14-year-old.  Look what‘s happened as a 27-year-old.  Her life has become a nightmare.  And I think that the district attorney‘s office is going to make a very strong case by saying that this young woman has come forward in a situation where she is challenging the most incredibly strong defendants that you could ever possibly imagine. 

This case is not three boys in a small rural community of Creedmore.  We‘re talking about wealthy, well-educated, and well-placed families of one of the prestigious universities in the United States, if not the world.  We‘re talking about Duke, and I think that she has made a stand, that she has made it clear that it stops here.  And I imagine that—go ahead, yes. 

COSBY:  But Pam, still, you know, this doesn‘t look good on the surface.  And let‘s go back again.  She was 18 years old at the time, raped and beaten by three men.  Don‘t you think even perceptually—and this comes on the heels when we‘re hearing, even—we were hearing some reports -- the father said to me the other night that the pressure is getting to her.  In fact, let me play the quote.  This is exactly what the father said to me, just a few days ago. 


COSBY:  We‘ve heard your daughter has considered dropping the case, that maybe the pressure is too much.  Is that true? 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  She has talked about it.  She has talked about it.  As a matter of fact she told me it was just—it was getting to be too much on her.  She couldn‘t take it.  So far she‘s still hanging in there, though. 

COSBY:  Is it possible she may drop out of the case? 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  It‘s possible.  It‘s possible. 


COSBY:  You know, Pam Bondi, the mom was also saying that she believes she will now testify.  How does this new, though, this new revelation of what happened in her past before, could that dissuade her?  Could she just say, look, they‘re going into too much of my past, that‘s it? 

PAM BONDI, TAMPA PROSECUTOR:  Sure it could and that‘s one of the fears when you‘re a prosecutor, that the victim will do that.  And that‘s when I heard this, it‘s just real heartbreaking.  I mean, this occurred when she was 14 and she reported when she was 18.  The only way, Rita, it could possibly be admissible in a court of law is if the defense can prove that she falsely accused these men.  And there is absolutely nothing to show that now.  And I think it‘s very interesting how this has come out when her name is supposedly protected. 

COSBY:  You know, Jayne, how do you use this if you are the defense team, you know, because, again, we don‘t know if it‘s true or not in the past?  How do you check that out? 

WEINTRAUB:  Well, we know—as a defense lawyer, of course, you know the accuser‘s name, so you run a prior background check.  That‘s one of the first thing that any investigator is going to do working for the defense.  The biggest problem is here, Rita.  The other lawyers are saying also is, you know, this could backfire.  Even if the defense were successful in getting it admitted in court in front of a jury, could you imagine being there as a defense lawyer and the victim then says, well, I didn‘t have the courage that I have today to stand up and fight for myself, but today I‘m not going to let that ever happen to me again.  That is so devastating and could be just destroying, completely, to any defense team.  So if I were them, I would be very careful where I went.  I think it‘s a mine.  I wouldn‘t touch it.  I would concentrate on other evidence, if I were the defense lawyers. 

COSBY:  Well, and let me bring in some of the evidence.  In fact John, we‘re just hearing, this is ESPN spoke with some of the lacrosse players.  They wanted their names to be kept out.  But what they said was that it was an argument over money, and they‘re saying that there was a dispute of how long the girl performed.  That‘s what they‘re claiming is (INAUDIBLE).  How do you bring that in, John, I mean, and how do you prove that now? 

BOURLAN:  I think it‘s incredible that these anonymous lacrosse players are attempting, again, to try their case in the media.  Let me say this, Rita, under our laws in the state of North Carolina, we have an outstanding statute that addresses the issue on all four corners.  The only way this information.

COSBY:  Are you talking about a rape shield law? 

BOURLAN:  We have a rape shield law and the only way this can possibly be introduced is if the defense can bring in expert testimony by way of psychologists, psychiatrists, and to present sufficient evidence in chambers, it‘s recorded, but in chambers after they make an application convincing the judge that her conduct is such that she has falsely fabricated this in her mind, a fantasy, if you will.  Otherwise.

COSBY:  John, real quick. 

BOURLAN:  .in this state there is no way, under this statute, that they can bring in this prior sexual behavior.  It‘s just not going to happen and I agree with the other speakers.


WEINTRAUB:  Rita, you‘ve actually uncovered the best evidence, thus far, when you interviewed the dad.  Because the father came forward and said that the girl told him that it was a broomstick as the weapon of choice.  Well, Rita, that evidence in and of itself will be the best evidence coming in for the defense.  Why?  It‘s not in the search warrants, it‘s not in the police reports, and if that is not in any report thus far, case over. 

COSBY:  And we will see, of course, what the D.A.  has, you guys.  All of you, thank you very much.  Interesting development tonight. 

Meantime, members of the New Black Panther party are flocking to Durham all to support the accuser in the case.  With me now is attorney, Malik Zulu Shabazz.  He is the chairman of the new national Black Panthers and also the national spokesman for Black Lawyers for Justice. 

You know, Malik, why are you guys getting involved in this case?  You know, the father even said to me he doesn‘t believe race has anything to do with this. 

MALIK ZULU SHABAZZ, CHAIRMAN, NEW BLACK PANTHERS:  We‘re getting involved because this is a valuable member of our community, despite what she was doing, and she deserves protection so that there can be a vigorous and adequate prosecution, and so that the defendants can be brought to justice and convicted for raping this sister. 

COSBY:  And Malik, look, I am all for, especially—I am all for if this dancer indeed was raped, these boys should absolutely be thrown in the slammer.  But we don‘t know that yet.  Don‘t you think you‘re jumping to conclusions?  We‘re not sure what happened. 

SHABAZZ:  Well, I—having discussed this with the family and in the community, I believe the allegations at hand.  And let‘s be honest, for hundreds of years, privileged white men have taken advantaged of and raped black women and they always say that the victim was never raped or that they made it up.  They never want to believe the black woman. 

COSBY:  But Malik, do you believe race is a factor?  And look, I come from the theory, it doesn‘t matter what color you are, a crime is a crime. 

SHABAZZ:  Well, yes.  No woman deserves to be raped, but there is a

pattern here of disbelieving the not wealthy and poor black woman and

believing white men when they do rape black women.  That is an historical

fact.  So we must address that

COSBY:  Now Malik, are you worried that your presence there—I know some of your guys went to the family‘s house the other day—worried you‘re going to inflame tension?  Already things are pretty delicate down there.  I mean, this is a nice community.  There are a lot of good people on both sides there. 

SHABAZZ:  Well, what we‘re here to do is let the victim and her family know that the community and the various organizations, the pastors and others that are with us, support the family and the victim and she does not have to fear coming forward.  She should come forward and to testify and not be intimidated by the defense lawyers or a hostile climate.  We are here to turn the climate around and gain justice for the victim. 

COSBY:  All right, Malik, thank you very much.  And I know you‘re going to be on Monday.  And of course, everybody, whatever the truth is in this case, we will follow it through to the very end.  Thank you very much. 

And still ahead, everybody:  If you saw “Dateline NBC‘s” undercover reports catching child predators in the act was alarming, wait until you see how many predators the cops just nabbed in one big sweep.  That‘s coming up and that‘s not all.  Take a look.

Still ahead, a LIVE AND DIRECT exclusive, five years since the Chandra Levy investigation captivated the nation.  The mystery, the scandal, the heartbreak.  Tonight, I‘ll ask Chandra‘s mother and father if they think this case will ever be solved. 

Plus a LIVE AND DIRECT duo in the world of entertainment.  We‘ll tell you why “American Idol” judge, Simon Cowell, actually said he was sorry.  And then we get no apologies from the king of all media, Howard Stern. 


HOWARD STERN, SHOCK JOCK:  You know I love you.  You know. 


COSBY:  Find out what else he told me.  A rare one-on-one with Howard Stern, that‘s coming up LIVE AND DIRECT. 



UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  The administration says that you can run, but you can‘t hide.  And to a certain extent, many fugitives out there think they can hide. 


COSBY:  And more than 9,000 fugitives are now behind bars tonight where they belong.  They thought that they could run, but they cannot hide.  The so called worse of the worst including more than 1,000 violent sexual predators have been busted in a major nationwide sting.  In fact, it‘s the largest number of sexual offenders ever captured at one time.  NBC‘s justice correspondent, Pete Williams, has more, now, on “Operation Falcon II.” 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Police, open the door. 

PETE WILLIAMS, NBC JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):  From the hours just after dawn in Springfield, Missouri. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Get down on the ground, face down. 

WILLIAMS:  Until late in the night in Lubbock, Texas. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  U.S. marshal, let me see your hands, man. 

WILLIAMS:  Federal marshals pounded on doors nearly 24 hours for a week, teaming up with local police for an intense fugitive roundup. 

ALBERTO GONZALES, ATTORNEY GENERAL:  The Marshal Service joined by many federal, state, and local partners targeted the worst of the worse fugitive felons in the country. 

WILLIAMS:  The marshals modeled “Operation Falcon II” on a highly successful national dragnet they conducted a year ago that swept up more than 10,000 fugitives.  This time they concentrated on fugitives charged with violent sex crimes or who have served their sentences, but failed to register as sex offenders. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  (speaking foreign language)

WILLIAMS:  Among those arrested, William Wisham (ph), who failed to register as a sex offender and the marshals say, recently assaulted a minor child. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  You got a picture of him, his height‘s going to be 6‘3”, 170. 

WILLIAMS:  In all, more than 9,000 fugitives arrested by a force of more than 2,000 marshals and police, working in 27 states. 

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Police.  Open up the door.  We got somebody inside a house.

WILLIAMS:  Michael Earp of the Marshal Service, a descendent of famed lawman Wyatt Earp, says it‘s a huge undertaking. 

(on camera):  Well, given the success of this operation, why can‘t maintain this tempo and do it all year long? 

MICHAEL EARP, MARSHAL SERVICE:  Well, our guys who are working on the team are working 18, 20 hours a day.  You can‘t keep that pace up. 

WILLIAMS (voice-over):  But they like the results so well they plan to try it again later this year. 

Pete Williams, NBC News, Washington. 


COSBY:  And Pete, thanks so much.  And with us now is Karen Simons with the U.S. Marshals, who is the deputy commander of “Operation Falcon II.” 

You know, great job nabbing these guys.  You know, you got 1,000 men.  I mean, this is incredible.  How many more are out there that actually could be doing these same type of crimes? 

KAREN SIMONS, U.S. MARSHALS:  It‘s hard to say.  There are so many sexual predators out there that have failed to register.  We really don‘t even have a count of how many are running right now. 

COSBY:  You know, what are some of the worst crimes that some of the guys you busted partook in? 

SIMONS:  I think the one that sticks out in my mind the most would be the first arrest of “Operation Falcon” in Belleville, Illinois.  This guy was running, failing to register, running from Missouri, coming into Illinois.  We arrested him, he had raped a child, and he had given that child gonorrhea. 

COSBY:  You know, you talked about just the length—the distance there.  Twenty-seven states, two territories took part in this major sting, as we‘re looking at the map.  How challenging is it to coordinate all of this? 

SIMONS:  It was an amazing effort.  Each of the states has different laws, and we had over 800 departments working with the Marshal Service.  It was a challenge, but the really great thing was once they found out the focus was the sex offender, everybody wanted to participate in the sweep. 

COSBY:  You bet.  And what did people use as an excuse, like that guy you talked about, what did he say when he got busted? 

SIMONS:  Oh, “I am not a bad guy.  I‘m not really a bad person.” 

That‘s the typical answer these mutts give. 

COSBY:  And I bet it‘s unfortunately for every—probably excuse in the book.  How long have these guys been on the run for?  You said that that guy like moved from state to state.  Are some of them on the run for years, you know, months? 

SIMONS:  Sure.  Some of them—I recall one in this operation who had been on the run for 14 years, another one for 10 years.  Some of the warrants are fresh, maybe they‘ve only been out for a week or so, so there‘s a wide variety of time that they‘ve been on the run. 

COSBY:  Karen Simons, you keep up the great work.  Thank you very much.

SIMONS:  Thank you.  Thank you, Rita.

COSBY:  Thank you, and “Falcon II” is not the only operation targeting sex offenders.  Our friends at “America‘s Most Wanted” set up their own traps to catch these perverts trying to meet up with underage kids online. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Out of the car.  Out of the car. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  They got him, let‘s go.  OK, go.  Let‘s go, let‘s go. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  They‘re already surprised then somebody runs out with a camera crew with John Walsh.  I think that‘s going to—I think that‘s going to cause a pretty interesting reaction. 


COSBY:  And Ed Miller with “America‘s Most Wanted” joins us now, live. 

You know, Ed, this video of is so incredible with you guys in action and John in action.  Let me play a little bit more, just showing you guys right there on the front lines.  It is pretty incredible because what these guys are saying and how you approach them—in fact, we‘re going to get that in the second.  But, what sort of surprised you the most?  I just asked Karen—what was the most surprising thing that you guys saw? 

ED MILLER, “AMERICA‘S MOST WANTED”:  Probably the most surprising thing is the type of people that were caught and not what we thought going into it.  Not your dirty old men.  Lots of very young guys, some college guys, many of them in their 20‘s and 30‘s.  We caught one Wall Street tycoon who drove up in $100,000 car, a camp counselor, an army colonel, and one guy who arrived at the house with his zipper down and his apparatus exposed, and as soon as he walked in the house he locked the door behind him so there was no mistaking exactly what was on his mind. 

COSBY:  How did you set up these stings to begin with?  How do you go about just the whole process? 

MILLER:  Well, we work very closely, you know, we want to make sure—despite—well, it sounds a little humorous at times, that we want you to all know that this is serious business.  We do not encourage any sort of vigilante action.  We worked very closely with the Suffolk County cops and they have an elite unit of cyber crime, perhaps the best in the whole country, so we worked very closely with them.  We set up two separate stings, one inside a house, one in a park where they posed as 12-year-old girls and they did not solicit anything, it was the men who did the soliciting.  And we should point out, by the way, they don‘t really need to actually meet the girl at the site.  They don‘t need to go to the house; they don‘t need to go to the park to be arrested.  They have committed the crime once they solicit sex over the internet. 

COSBY:  And you know, I love how you guys catch them in action.  Let me play it now. 


JOHN WALSH, “AMERICA‘S MOST WANTED”:   Here is a guy driving around in $100,000-plus car.  Coming to specifically, purposely have sex with a 13-year-old girl.  Look at this guy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Oh, he‘s a big guy.

WALSH:  He‘s pretty buffed up.  Look at him laughing. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  All right, let‘s go get him.  Let‘s go.  Let‘s go. 

WALSH:  Good work.  Good work, men.  Good work.  He‘s got the condom right there. 


COSBY:  He‘s got the condom right there.  And I want to also show a little bit of John in action, your colleague and our friend, because, I mean, he really took this personally, he said, I am going to get these guys.  Let me show John, it‘s pretty incredible, right there in this segment. 


WALSH:  Let me show you something, bro, you‘re in big, big trouble. 

Big trouble.  Big trouble. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Let me check the car.

WALSH:  It‘s been a long time for you.  This is your day, buddy.  This is your day.  You came here to have sex with a 13-year-old girl. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I didn‘t want to have sex. 

WALSH:  Yeah you did.  Yeah you did.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I asked to play basketball and stuff. 

WALSH:  You are—you got a history this long of being a liar, buddy. 

This is a bad day for you.  That‘s a bad day for you. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  What‘s your name? 


WALSH:  I am going to tell you one thing, bro you got away with it one time before, you are [beep] today.  You are [beep]. 


COSBY:  You know, Ed, it is amazing.  Why do you think that John also was so outraged?  You could tell he was so into making sure that these guys get behind bars. 

MILLER:  Right.  Well, you know I‘ve been with “America‘s Most wanted” for six years and Mr. Walsh is obviously very, very dedicated to any crime against a child because of his personal tragedy in his family.  And of course there is an entire generation of people who do not know that his child was kidnapped and eventually murder and he‘s taken up the cause and changed laws all over the country.  And now his cause—and we are trying very hard at “America‘s Most Wanted” to get the Child Safety Act passed, which is stalled in Congress.  That act would, of course, create a national sex registry for pedophiles all over the country.  So, you know, if a guy‘s wanted for a sex act in Missouri, if he moves to Montana, he‘ll still be listed and he‘ll be able to find him.  It‘s a very important piece of legislation. 

COSBY:  And you know, I‘ve talked to John about it.  You let us know what we can do.  And I know that Mark Lunsford‘s also helping you good folks there at “America‘s Most Wanted.” 

MILLER:  All right, Rita.

COSBY:  Ed, thank you very much. 

MILLER:  Thank you.  Thank you.

COSBY:  And still ahead, a LIVE AND DIRECT exclusive, the parents of Chandra Levy tell me five years after their daughter vanished, do they think the case will be solved? 

And later, it‘s a story that everyone is talking about, Kellie Pickler voted off “American Idol.”  Did alleged ballot stuffing seal her fate?  It‘s ahead on LIVE AND DIRECT.


COSBY:  Well, this Sunday marks the five-year anniversary of Chandra Levy‘s disappearance.  In 2001 the story of the missing Washington, D.C.  intern captivated the nation for four months before the tragic events of September 11.  Today, Chandra‘s murder still remains a mystery. 


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  We need to get my daughter home alive.  Someone knows the truth. 

COSBY (voice-over):  Chandra Levy‘s disappearance dominated headlines and became known as one of the most notorious missing person cases ever.

Police say that Chandra Ann Levy was last seen on April 30.

Chandra Levy, a Washington intern has now been missing for 19 day.

Today marks four weeks since Chandra Levy, the young woman working as an intern in Washington, D.C., was last seen.  

COSBY:  The 24-year-old student from California had just finished an internship in Washington, D.C., when she mysteriously vanished on May 1, 2001. 

The case became a national obsession, when rumors surfaced of an affair between Chandra and then California Congressman Gary Condit.  Soon, their relationship took center stage.  Chandra‘s parents, bombarded by the press and questions about their daughter‘s personal life, had only one message. 

SUSAN LEVY, MOTHER OF CHANDRA LEVY:  If anybody is out there hearing this that may have my daughter, open your heart and your mind and bring her home. 

COSBY:  While search efforts continued, investigators searched Condit‘s apartment and asked him to provide a DNA sample.  His relationship with the intern made him the prime unofficial suspect. 

Condit, a married man with children, admitted to having an affair with the intern, according to police sources, but he denied any involvement with her disappearance.  The Levys didn‘t buy it. 

S. LEVY:  Mr. Condit has not been very truthful to me. 

COSBY:  More than a year after her disappearance, a sad discovery.  A man walking his dog finds a human skull and bones in a heavily wooded section of a park near Chandra‘s apartment. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  The remains found earlier today are in fact Chandra Levy. 

COSBY:  Chandra‘s death was ruled a homicide.  And now, almost five years to the day, no suspects have been named.  The case of Chandra Levy still unsolved. 


COSBY:  And we repeatedly reached out to former Congressman Gary Condit for comment, but he did not return our calls.  He currently resides with his family in Arizona. 

Now, we want to point out that, according to the public affairs officer, Condit was cleared by police years ago.  But police also tell us that the investigation into Chandra‘s murder does still remain open. 

And joining me now are Chandra‘s parents, Robert and Susan Levy. 

We want to thank you, first of all, for being with us tonight. 

You and I have talked over the years.  And I continue to keep you both in our prayers.

How—how do you find the strength to keep going? 

S. LEVY:  It‘s very difficult, very, very hard. 

COSBY:  You know, Susan, as you look at it now, here it is five years later, how tough is it as time goes by? 

S. LEVY:  It never gets easy.  When you don‘t have a child that you love very much is not there, it‘s never easy.  You take one foot in front of the other, and you try to walk forward, looking for answers. 

And may I tell you that we are, as of tonight, opening up a Web site.  It‘s  And it will be both in English and in—also in Spanish.  And the purpose is to have people call in, anonymously, through their e-mails, and to be able to report anything that might help lead for a conviction and arrest of my daughter‘s killer. 

COSBY:  You know, Bob, as Susan was just saying, is that the hardest part for you?  Here it is, five years later.

I remember the case so well, and—and, you know, we see these beautiful pictures of your daughter, too.  Is that the hardest part, not having an answer as to who did this horrible act? 

ROBERT LEVY, FATHER OF CHANDRA LEVY:  Well, it‘s just hard in general.  And, even if we found the person, it wouldn‘t bring her back.  But at least justice would be done in this world. 

COSBY:  You know, we talked to Fran Iseman, the godmom.  And I want to put up a quote. 

She said: “I wish that the Levys can heal from this, that they can feel sunlight on their faces and have smiles on their faces again.”  It‘s a beautiful quote.  “I hope that Chandra will have justice some day.” 

Bob, do you believe that this will be solved at some point, that you will have finality?

R.            LEVY:  Well, don‘t really know that.  You know, it‘s been five years.  And it‘s a cold case.  So, it might not be solved, but we have to live on anyway. 

And then we live with the hope that we will see Chandra after we cross over. 

COSBY:  And I‘m sure you—you pray about her and think about her every day. 

You know, Susan, as we are looking at some pictures, and this is some videotape of her, tell us what she was like and why she was so special.  It seemed like you had such a wonderful relationship, Susan.

S.             LEVY:  Thank you. 

She was my daughter.  I carried her and, you know, breast-fed her.


S.             LEVY:  And—and I spent many, many years and hours being with her and nurturing and just doing a lot of wonderful things.  And a family is meant to be together. 

And it—it‘s something that you—your memories and treasures are there, but, unfortunately, the future isn‘t there anymore. 

And I have been very blessed to have those moments with—with my daughter, and, you know, also my whole family.  But it‘s—it‘s—I have been robbed.  It‘s a terrible feeling to have a child taken from you. 

COSBY:  You know, as you watch also the other coverage, too, unfortunately, Susan, you know, the Natalee Holloway case...

R. LEVY:  Ah, yes. 

COSBY:  You know, Bob, what—what advice do you have for Natalee‘s mom? 

R. LEVY:  Just have to keep going and try to live the regular life that you have, because she wants you to.  And still search for her and search for what happened to her.

And, hopefully, if she has crossed over, you will get some messages from her.  And, hopefully, they will find the culprit who did it. 

COSBY:  You know, Susan, what would you like to say to Natalee‘s mom, as she‘s sitting there, you know, praying for some answers and some resolution? 

S.             LEVY:  We all need to join forces, all of us, and walk one foot and step in front of the other, but to unite. 

And I—my heart goes out to her.  I know what—the agony of not knowing.  And there are many of us out there.  I think that we need to unite and ask for answers from anyone who can help solve any of our cases.  Someone has to be courageous enough to step forward and help solve our unfortunate circumstances. 

And, so, I‘m asking for victims of families, such as Natalee and others and myself, to wear a purple ribbon, and to wear it all year, along with having it on their cars and in their homes, outside their homes, so that people will recognize that—how bad the situation is across through the United States. 

COSBY:  You bet. 

You know, and, as here it is five years, the anniversary, I can‘t believe how much time has gone by.  Both of you, if there is someone out who has a clue, there‘s got to be somebody who knows something.  If somebody is watching tonight, what do you want to say, and also to whoever is responsible, Susan? 

S.             LEVY:  Please, again...

R. LEVY:  Well, whoever is responsible, we would like them to—to do the right thing and pay their penalty here on this—on this side of life. 

S.             LEVY:  They need to be courageous and stand up. 

R. LEVY:  They need to be—they need to come forward. 

And that would help us.  You know, it won‘t bring—it won‘t bring what they call closure.  We don‘t use that word.  Most—most victims‘ families don‘t like that word, or the families of the servicemen killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and people who have lost children to drunk drivers and to murder and to even disease.  It‘s...

S.             LEVY:  Excuse me.

But I again interject that anyone knows anything, any information, to contact the  It just takes one person that might be able to help solve and find the killer.  As it is, that particular individual could be out and hurting other people. 

COSBY:  You bet. 

And, both of you, so you know, we are putting that up on the screen. 

And, anybody at home, please call.  Please, also, make sure you get on to that Web site, put any information you have on to that Web site.  And let‘s pray that this family, this beautiful family, gets some answers.

Bob and Susan, thank you so much. 

And, everybody, we are going to be right back.


COSBY: “Idol” worship, it‘s never been more true than this year.  Who are the top finalists and who is going to take home the big prize?  We have got a former contestant next on LIVE & DIRECT.



RYAN SEACREST, HOST:  Kellie, Paris, thank you for bearing with us tonight. 

Kellie, tonight, it‘s the end for you. 

Paris, you are safe. 


COSBY:  Well, that was the latest contestant voted off of last night‘s “American Idol,” Kellie Pickler.

That was only one of the many surprises in the show this week.  Paula Abdul and also Ryan Seacrest had a short, but sweet ending to their alleged feud.  We are going to talk about that in a moment.

And, also, Simon Cowell apologizing to a contestant, apologizing to anybody?  He actually did.  Well, now that the show is down to the final five contestants, the heat is on to all of those involved. 

We are going to talk about that heat now with Kimberly Caldwell.  She‘s a former “Idol” contestant, and also now the co-host of TV Guide Channel‘s “Idol tonight.”  And also Rosanna Tavarez, who is also a former “Pop Star” contestant and also co-host of “Idol Tonight.” 

First of all, are you guys so surprised at how big this has become? 



CALDWELL:  I mean, it‘s huge.


COSBY:  Do everything still recognize you guys everywhere you go? 


Well, I mean, she—she was on “Pop Stars.”  I was on “Idol.”  And they were both big shows.  And I think that we didn‘t realize how big they were when we were on the show. 


CALDWELL:  But it was big on season two.  Now it‘s actually taken over the world. 

COSBY:  Yes, it has. 

CALDWELL:  It has.


COSBY:  Let me show you the numbers, you guys.

TAVAREZ:  Pre-show, post-show, and all sorts of things going on. 


COSBY:  Right.  Incredible. 

Last night, 47.5 million people voted this week.  This is a... 


CALDWELL:  That‘s insane.

COSBY:  I mean, this is astounding.  What is it?  What is it the draw? 

TAVAREZ:  I really think that—I mean, this is the fifth season. 

You think it would slow down.  But I think it‘s just...


CALDWELL:  You think it would get boring by now.  




TAVAREZ:  Yes.  But I think they have picked such wonderful contestants every year, year in, year out.

And I also think it‘s the just audience involvement. 


TAVAREZ:  The audience involvement is so incredible.  I mean, you really do get a chance to vote for the person that you want to become the “American Idol.”  I mean, it‘s audience interaction.  I really think that‘s key about the show.

CALDWELL:  Right. 

TAVAREZ:  So, year after year, the people that they come up with at the end that are crowned are phenomenal, and they do really well. 


COSBY:  And it‘s tough, too, because you look at it now, a lot of people were surprised about Kellie getting voted off.  What was your reaction, Kim? 

CALDWELL:  Well, actually, I wasn‘t predicting that she was going to get voted off, because I know she has a huge fan base. 


COSBY:  Yes, you don‘t want to do that, right?

CALDWELL:  Right.  She has a huge fan base.  And they are very loyal to her.  And her personality and her talent has gotten her this far. 

But I did think that it was time for her to go home and that the five that deserved to be in the top five are still remaining, for sure.

COSBY:  What do you think? 

TAVAREZ:  Well, you know, I spoke to her afterwards, right after she got booted off.

And she‘s just so genuinely self-deprecating.  She said, you know, I know I didn‘t do well the last show, and I know I didn‘t do well before that.  So, I had already packed my bags. 

So, I really just think she was being honest and she knew she was going to go.  So...


COSBY:  You know,. what was a big surprise last night, if not for the Kellie part, Simon Cowell apologizing.  And let me play a little clip and get you guys to react. 



SIMON COWELL, JUDGE:  I think I was unfair to one person last night.  And I want to apologize, because I don‘t think this person got the right appraisal.  And that person is Katharine. 



COSBY:  Did you ever think you would hear those words, Cowell and apologize? 


CALDWELL:  First time for everything, you have to say, but....


CALDWELL:  But you know what?  I was at the studio.  And I watched and heard exactly what Simon Cowell heard.  And it was great.  It was a good—you know, it was good, is what I thought. 

I went home, and I watched it with my family...

TAVAREZ:  It was great.

CALDWELL:  ... and a couple of my friends.  It was perfection.  So, I want to apologize, too, because I just thought it was good.



CALDWELL:  .. on TV, and it was perfection.  It really was. 

COSBY:  Do you think these little back-stories are what keep it interesting, you know, the Paula-Ryan feud? 

TAVAREZ:  Yes.  I mean, it makes them three-dimensional.  You know, they are not just saying, you are good, you are bad, and you need to improve this or that. 

I mean, they really have relationships with each other.  And whether or not that‘s amplified for the television, we all enjoy it regardless. 


TAVAREZ:  You know, whether or not Paula is, you know, a great Oscar-winning kind of actress and can cry on call, we are not sure.  But it‘s really interesting to watch her get that emotional. 


COSBY:  Let me—let me play her—let me play her in action.  And I will get you to respond.




PAULA ABDUL, JUDGE:  You know what?  Shut up, for once. 

RANDY JACKSON, JUDGE:  Ryan, get on with it. 

SEACREST:  The wheels are falling off already. 

COWELL:  Are you guys talking yet, by the way? 

SEACREST:  We are speaking, yes. 

ABDUL:  We love each other.


COWELL:  ... clear that one up.


SEACREST:  There‘s love at the core. 


COSBY:  Is that part of the juice of it? 


TAVAREZ:  Me and Kimberly do that.


TAVAREZ:  For ratings. 

CALDWELL:  We do, but that‘s the thing—yes, for ratings. 

TAVAREZ:  You know?


COSBY:  ... actually stage something, is what you‘re saying? 


CALDWELL:  It‘s just, like, you know, it‘s just friendly, fun banter. 

I mean, we do it back and forth, too. 

TAVAREZ:  Right. 

CALDWELL:  But it‘s just all in fun.  You know what I‘m saying?  They have worked together for so many years now. 

TAVAREZ:  Absolutely.

CALDWELL:  And they are around each other 24 hours a day.

COSBY:  How much of that is real and how much is that prepared? 

TAVAREZ:  Oh, for us?

COSBY:  For what you see...


CALDWELL:  It‘s all fake. 



CALDWELL:  For them, I think that—I don‘t think it‘s prepared.  I think that, you know, they know what buttons to push now.  And so they push the buttons.

TAVAREZ:  It‘s like watching—it‘s like watching siblings. 

CALDWELL:  Oh, yes.

TAVAREZ:  Once you know each other that well, you just know exactly how to get a rise out of someone. 


CALDWELL:  Exactly what to say. 

COSBY:  Well, now, I know you guys are big MSNBC fans. 

And coming up in a few seconds, we have Tucker Carlson. 

How would you rate him as a talent? 

CALDWELL:  Tucker Carlson


CALDWELL:  I give you a 10. 

TAVAREZ:  Perfect 10.


TAVAREZ:  I give you a 10.

COSBY:  Well, let‘s see.

Actually, I think we have got Tucker. 

Hey, Tucker.  Is Tucker there?

TAVAREZ:  He‘s a cutie. 



TAVAREZ:  Look at him.  He‘s so cute. 

CARLSON:  I am one studio over.  And I am coming in there at any moment. 


COSBY:  I knew you would.


COSBY:  Hang on, Tucker.

Any advice you have for Tucker in terms of his talent?  Have you seen his talent?

CALDWELL:  Oh, no.  What is his talent? 

COSBY:  Tucker performed at—with Simon Cowell before. 

CALDWELL:  Oh, yes, with the cigarette.   

COSBY:  Yes, with the cigarette.  You saw that?

CALDWELL:  I saw that.

CARLSON:  I can flip a cigarette into my mouth.  It‘s...

CALDWELL:  With it lit.  With it lit, I might add.


COSBY:  Would he make it to the finals, guys? 


CALDWELL:  I am going to have to go with no. 


CARLSON:  I think that‘s a fair assessment. 

TAVAREZ:  It might be give him some good vibrato, though, like:

(singing):  Ahhhh.

CALDWELL:  Yes.  Well, the smoke, you know...



COSBY:  We will have to see what Tucker says. 

Hey, Tucker, what do you think?  And what do you have ahead, by the way,.

CARLSON:  I think I—well, first of all, I think they‘re totally right.  I am not going to win “American Idol,” so the dream has died. 

Tonight, though, more the Duke rape case, the amazing revelation that the accuser in this case has accused three other men some time ago of pretty much exactly the same crime, and also the news from her parents that she was recently hospitalized for psychiatric disorders.  We will debate what that means.  We will tell you all there is to know about that case in just a minute. 

COSBY:  All right, Tucker, thank you very much.

CARLSON:  Thanks, Rita.

COSBY:  And, ladies, thank you very much.  What do you have coming ahead? 


CALDWELL:  Thank you so much.

“Idol Tonight” is the official “American Idol” pre-show at the “American Idol” stage with the “American Idol” audience. 


COSBY:  Both of you gals together, how can it go wrong? 



CALDWELL:  It‘s good, clean fun. 

TAVAREZ:  And we have—who is coming this week?  I think it‘s...

CALDWELL:  It could be Ace Young and Anthony Fedorov.


TAVAREZ:  And we have Justin Guarini on the show coming up, too. 



COSBY:  And I would love to have you guys both back on.  Awesome, both of you. 

TAVAREZ:  Thank you.  

CALDWELL:  Thank you so much.  We are big fans of you, Rita. 

COSBY:  And big fan of you guys.

CALDWELL:  You get a 10. 

TAVAREZ:  A 10, 10. 

COSBY:  Hey, better than Tucker, right? 




TAVAREZ:  Sorry, Tucker. 

CALDWELL:  He‘s a nine-and-a-half.  Sorry, Tucker.


COSBY:  All right. 


CALDWELL:  Nine-and-a-half.


COSBY:  Thank you, ladies. 

CALDWELL:  Thank you. 

TAVAREZ:  Thank you. 

COSBY:  And still ahead, everybody, stick with us, because “Caught by Cosby”—a shocking videotape inside a McDonald‘s.  You can call the perpetrator a hamburglar. 

And, next, the king of all media, Howard Stern, is moving into the movie business.  Don‘t worry.  It‘s not “Private Parts,” the sequel.  I go one-on-one with Howard.  I just came back from talking to him.  That‘s coming up next. 


HOWARD STERN, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  A chance for filmmakers to make a short film and get noticed.  And we have a unique opportunity that we can showcase these films on Howard TV.                 



COSBY:  Well, we have all heard of Sundance, maybe even Cannes.  And, then, of course, there‘s Tribeca.

But they had better look out, because there‘s a new kid on the block.  Tonight, radio shock jock Howard Stern launched a new venue for what he calls some of the best low-brow entertainment around, compliments of the Howard Stern Film Festival. 


STERN:  This festival, I am jazzed.  I have been waiting for months for this festival.  It‘s a very important festival.

People say, why is it important?  We all know why.  All of the films are about me.  That‘s right, Howard Stern and “The Howard Stern Show.”  Now, what could be more important than that? 

Actually, this is an important film festival.  We offer prizes to the winners.  First prize, over $30,000 in cash and prizes.  And most film festivals do not offer prizes.  They make the participants pay to be in it.  So, I think that‘s a very clear distinction.  We are not cheap.

COSBY:  What makes your festival different, though, than Tribeca and others? 

STERN:  Well, I think what makes it different is that we actually have fun.  A lot of the film festivals have become very serious and hoity-toity.

We are looking for great comedy.  We are looking for fun.  We are looking for laughs.  This is a chance for filmmakers to make a short film and get noticed.  And we have a unique opportunity that we can showcase these films on Howard TV. 

COSBY:  I want to end on a serious note, “United 93.”  How do you feel, as a New Yorker, about the film and it coming out? 

STERN:  I‘m one of those Americans that could not see “United 93.”

I cannot handle it.  It is too much of a tragedy.  I know those people on the plane were heroes.  But to see a film this, when we have not caught Osama bin Laden yet, I think that I‘m so outraged that the guy responsible for the whole 9/11 disaster is still hiding out in a cave with his dialysis machine.  I think he should be captured.  I‘m not ready to watch anything about Flight 93. 


COSBY:  And, of course, Howard Stern has his more serious moments, but he also took some time out to talk about celebrities, have a little fun with me on the red carpet. 


COSBY:  In Africa right now, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, they are about to have a baby.  What should they call it?

STERN:  Well, I was thinking about Moldrid, Moldrid, because I think there‘s some rare disease named moldrid in Namibia. 

I don‘t know what those two are doing in Namibia.  They say they want privacy.  Yet, meanwhile, every day, in the paper, we see pictures of them.  I think they are the two best-looking people I have ever seen in world.  And I think the cosmic joke would be if the two of them have a baby—we are all expecting this gorgeous baby—and the baby comes out looking look this.  What a laugh we would have.  Can you imagine?

COSBY:  Who do you think is going to have a better baby, Angelina or Katie Holmes‘ baby, Suri? 

STERN:  Well, I think that is a tough one. 

You know, Tom Cruise confuses me.  Here‘s a guy, he‘s buying X-rays machines, so he can X-ray the baby every day.  As soon as the baby is born and he can see it, he ran off to promote his movie, “Mission: Impossible.”  He‘s quite a character.



COSBY:  And I enjoyed Howard a lot.  I‘m going to talk about him also on my blog. 

And, everybody, you can see the finalists of Howard Stern‘s movie festival tomorrow night on Howard Stern On Demand, again, on Howard Stern On Demand.  It should be great.  Be sure to see who wins Howard‘s top honors in his film festival.  It should be great.

And, then, coming up, everybody, on Monday, watch my entire interview with Howard Stern.  You want won‘t to miss it.  We are going to have more about Tom Cruise, Charlie Sheen.  And he even sounds off about President Bush.  Howard Stern unplugged with me, Monday night, you got to tune in.

We will be right back.


COSBY:  And, usually, when you go to McDonald‘s, you get what you order.  But a woman using the ATM got a lot more than she expected.  She nearly got mugged.  The guy came out of nowhere and tried to steal her wallet.  But, as you can see, she was not about to give up. 

Workers tried to help her, but this would-be hamburglar got away.  Cops think the bandit is 22-year-old Eduardo Rivera (ph) of Lakeland, Florida.  And they have already issued a warrant for his arrest, all caught on tape.

And that does it for me on LIVE & DIRECT tonight.  Everybody, I‘m Rita Cosby.

Make sure you tune in to Monday, Howard Stern fully.

And, right now, fully Tucker Carlson with “THE SITUATION”—Tucker.

CARLSON:  Thanks, Rita.  That‘s fully me.




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