Guests: Gloria Allred, Dean Johnson, Jayne Weintraub, Denise Brown
DAN ABRAMS, HOST: Coming up, three stories, three exclusives. With the 10th anniversary of the murder of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman just days away, O.J. Simpson is speaking out.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To this day, many people remain convinced that you killed Nicole and her friend Ron Goldman. Do you worry that Sydney and Justin will someday come to the same conclusion?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
ABRAMS (voice-over): We‘ll talk to Nicole‘s sister, Denise Brown.
And another ABRAMS REPORT exclusive in the Peterson case. We‘ll tell you why the defense is saying that investigators had suspected Peterson‘s girlfriend Amber Frey may have been involved in Laci Peterson‘s murder.
Plus, he says al Qaeda taught him how to hijack an airplane and he told the FBI about it before 9-11, so why didn‘t they take him more seriously?
The program about justice starts now.
ABRAMS: Hi everyone, and welcome to the program. And what a program this is going to be. First up on the docket, another ABRAMS REPORT exclusive in the Scott Peterson case. It relates to Peterson‘s girlfriend Amber Frey and why early on some investigators suspected that Amber Frey may have been involved in Laci Peterson‘s murder.
Peterson‘s attorney, Mark Geragos, made reference to this issue in his opening statement on Wednesday. Geragos said that there was a report from an investigator named Steve Jacobson. He said he had been presented to a court. Jacobson, Geragos said—had said that police suspected Amber may have been involved in some way or another. We went back through all the documents we have obtained throughout the course of the investigation and found this wiretap report from January 13, 2003 where detectives clearly do not believe Amber Frey is being honest with them.
Investigator Jacobson wrote, “Obviously Amber Frey is no longer telling us the truth in this investigation. I suspect she may be disseminating information to Scott Peterson concerning what law enforcement knows.”
Jacobson even concluded that Amber Frey still has a desire to have Scott Peterson in her life and that she may even lie or conspire with him to withhold evidence. Then on January 18, only six days before Frey‘s press conference with police, Jacobson defends more wiretaps, writing, “We believe these telephone conversations if intercepted will show Scott Peterson‘s further involvement and possibly the involvement of Amber Frey in Laci Peterson‘s disappearance.”
All right. Only six days later, January 24, 2003, Amber Frey held a press conference with the Modesto police, at the Modesto Police Department where they said this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Amber Frey has been cooperative in the investigation and has been eliminated as a suspect in the Laci Peterson disappearance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABRAMS: So what changed their mind so quickly? Well we‘ve also learned that before that press conference, Amber Frey took and passed a lie detector test. But get this. The polygraph examiner wrote and I quote “I asked the subject if she would suspect anyone of causing Laci‘s disappearance she stated she would suspect Laci‘s husband Scott Peterson because of the things he had told during their relationship about being married.”
Wow, a lot to talk about here. All right, so police initially suspicious, the question, will the defense be able to use it to their advantage? Let‘s bring in our legal team tonight—former San Mateo County prosecutor Dean Johnson who‘s been following this case and been in the courtroom, criminal defense attorney Jayne Weintraub and Amber Frey‘s attorney Gloria Allred.
All right, Gloria let me first of all start with you. Does any of this come as a surprise to you what we‘ve just reported about them initially suspecting Amber Frey about Amber actually telling the polygraph examiner that she suspected Scott Peterson. Does this come as a surprise to you?
GLORIA ALLRED, AMBER FREY‘S ATTORNEY: Well no because first of all Mark Geragos suggested in his opening statement the other day in Redwood City that that document existed. But it‘s natural for police at first to suspect anyone who might be involved in relationships that might be close to the deceased or to the missing person and at that point it was a missing person, Laci Peterson and obviously, Amber had had a relationship with Scott.
What really is important is that the police learned that she passed the polygraph with flying colors, that in addition to that, that she has cooperated in so many ways. They did an investigation and in no way did Amber—was Amber involved and now she‘s a real heroin because she has assisted law enforcement in so many ways.
ABRAMS: Does it detract from her credibility that so early on when the polygraph examiner is questioning Amber Frey that she says, I suspect Scott Peterson may have been involved.
ALLRED: Well, I‘m not going to comment on what she said or whether or not she said that...
ABRAMS: I‘m telling you we got it from the polygraph examiner‘s record.
ALLRED: OK, but let me just say one thing is clear that we know that Scott Peterson had said to her that he had lost his wife and this would be the first holidays without her. So naturally if he says he lost his wife and the first—this would be the first holidays without her and then suddenly his wife is missing and these are the first holidays without her, of course, who wouldn‘t be suspicious under circumstances...
ALLRED: ... such as that?
ABRAMS: Dean Johnson, you see any avenue here for—I mean Mark Geragos really only made the reference in passing and that led us to go back and review all of the documents we have gotten in this case and came on this one. Do you think the defense is going to be able make some hay out of this?
DEAN JOHNSON, FMR. SAN MATEO COUNTY PROSECUTOR: Well I think so. I have discussed in the press as much as six months ago the possibility of Amber Frey as a suspect without even the benefit of Jacobson‘s affidavit. I almost fell off my chair when Geragos referred to that affidavit in his opening statement. I said, finally, thank you. You know here‘s the obvious defense theory.
ABRAMS: Well how is that a defense theory though...
ABRAMS: ... I mean as Gloria points out...
JOHNSON: It‘s very...
ABRAMS: Hang on Dean. As Gloria points out, she was cleared. Yes, so initially...
ABRAMS: ... they knew he was going out with her, she‘s an obvious possible suspect, they clear her as a possible suspect. Game over. How is it relevant then for the defense?
JOHNSON: Well, cleared and cleared—and I‘ve got to tell you, I have—as a former prosecutor I have very little faith in polygraph exams. I‘ve had people hook me up to polygraphs and tell me to lie and I‘ve passed polygraph exams. But you know what? There are a lot of different scenarios here under which Amber Frey may be involved without actually having done the murder. There have been discussions about the possibility of solicitation to commit murder...
ABRAMS: Wait. Wait. But Dean, no one...
ABRAMS: Wait. Wait. Dean, no one is suggesting at this point, though, not even the defense is suggesting at this point that maybe Amber Frey was involved, are they?
JOHNSON: Well Geragos was quoted in the paper as late as two days ago, saying—quote—“I believe Amber Frey is involved”...
ALLRED: Well let me just say one thing. Anyone who suggests that Amber Frey was involved in any way with the disappearance of Laci Peterson and Conner, may they rest in peace, better get ready because there‘s defamatory and I think she‘s have a good liable or slander lawsuit...
ALLRED: ... so just watch out.
ABRAMS: ... I would expect Gloria would be suing anyone who would make...
ABRAMS: ... that suggestion.
JOHNSON: ... that, well, that you know...
ABRAMS: But you know what? Maybe someone...
ABRAMS: ... we have a guest who may be ready to get sued. Jayne Weintraub, I‘m sorry I haven‘t brought you in up to now. All right Jayne...
JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I hope I‘m not the one that‘s ready to be sued.
ABRAMS: That‘s what I was talking about...
WEINTRAUB: I am totally ready for the truth to be a defense, Dan.
ABRAMS: All right...
WEINTRAUB: That‘s what I am ready for...
ABRAMS: Take it away. How relevant...
WEINTRAUB: ... but I would love to cross-examine Amber.
ABRAMS: Take—how relevant are all these quotes I have been reading from the wiretap reports, from the polygraph examiner‘s report, can the defense do you think use this or is this going to become...
WEINTRAUB: Absolutely. But I‘ll tell you how they‘re going to use it Dan. In my opinion, I think they‘re going to use it for cross-examination to show that she‘s a liar, that she lies when its to her advantage, that she is scheming, that she does things surreptitiously. For example, in the affidavit—I‘m sure by now Gloria has read it—in the affidavit it says number one, that they‘re convinced that she was not telling them the truth. Number two, she said she hadn‘t spoken with Scott lately when of course the police had already intercepted a phone call an hour before and they had already tape recorded her speaking with Scott. She lied to the police and said she hadn‘t spoken with him lately. That‘s number one. Number two...
ABRAMS: You know, let me read that one exactly Jayne. So you‘re referring to number one, let me go to number one.
Detective Buehler stated he had talked with Amber Frey and asked her if she had heard from Scott Peterson. Amber Frey said she had not. Detective Buehler stated he did not reveal to her that he had intercepted several conversations between the two of them. Obviously Amber Frey is no longer telling us the truth in this investigation and judging by Scott‘s question to her in call “A” above, I suspect she may be disseminating information to Scott Peterson concerning what law enforcement knows about this investigation.
WEINTRAUB: She‘s playing both ends. That‘s what Amber Frey is all about. That‘s number one. Number two and secondly in order of importance is the fact that Amber Frey already sees and seizes the moment to make this her pot of gold. She‘s going—and I‘ve said this all along, a brass ring for Amber Frey...
ABRAMS: ... let me just get a question...
WEINTRAUB: Excuse me. Gloria, are you saying that the police still take things down wrong...
ABRAMS: Wait. No. Wait. I‘m saying...
WEINTRAUB: ... is that what you‘re saying?
ABRAMS: ... I don‘t understand how this is going to come up in cross-examination because there‘s nothing. The only thing that they could use...
WEINTRAUB: She‘s lying to get money...
ABRAMS: The only thing they could use is if she did lie early on, if she did, they could then possibly use that against her on cross-examination.
ALLRED: You know let me just say...
ALLRED: ... let me just say Dan first of all...
ABRAMS: Gloria, go ahead.
ALLRED: ... you know if anybody...
ABRAMS: I‘ve got to let Gloria have the final word in this segment, yes...
ALLRED: ... if anybody thinks that the police are going to stand at a press conference with Amber Frey, which they did...
ALLRED: ... if they don‘t believe Amber Frey 1,000 percent, then people don‘t know how police work. It‘s ridiculous. She‘s a heroin to the police.
WEINTRAUB: A heroin...
ALLRED: ... yes she is...
ALLRED: And you...
ALLRED: ... and you and Geragos can attempt to defame her or to discredit her...
ALLRED: ... it‘s not going to work...
ABRAMS: Hang on...
ABRAMS: Jayne, hang on. We‘re going to take a break.
ABRAMS: Hang on.
ABRAMS: Hang on. Hang on. Everyone...
ABRAMS: ... everyone—Dean, Jayne, hold on. We‘ll take a quick break. When we come back we‘re going to keep talking about this exclusive information coming out from the Scott Peterson case.
Plus later in the show, he says al Qaeda trained him to be a hijacker before 9-11. He got cold feet, he says and went to the FBI instead. So, why didn‘t the bureau take him more seriously? Lisa Myers talks to him.
And also coming up, O.J. Simpson speaking out just days before the 10th anniversary of his ex-wife‘s murder. We‘ll hear what he has to say and talk with Nicole Brown‘s sister, Denise Brown.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In 10 years the subject of their mother‘s death, her murder has never come up, ever?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Never, never.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABRAMS: Your e-mails, firstname.lastname@example.org. I‘ll respond at the end of the show.
ABRAMS: Coming up, more of our exclusive report in the Scott Peterson case about why police initially suspected his girlfriend Amber Frey might have been involved in Laci‘s murder, coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AMBER FREY, SCOTT PETERSON‘S FMR. GIRLFRIEND: I met Scott Peterson November 20, 2002. I was introduced to him. I was told he was unmarried. Scott told me he was not married. We did have a romantic relationship. When I discovered he was involved in the Laci Peterson disappearance case, I immediately contacted the Modesto Police Department.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABRAMS: That was January 24, 2003. It was not just contacting the Modesto Police Department, she then held the press conference at the Modesto Police Department. They were standing by her side saying she‘s been cleared as part of the investigation. Defense attorney Mark Geragos made references in opening statements suggesting that early on the investigators suspected that Amber Frey might have been involved. We‘ve been showing you some exclusive details from the criminal investigator Steve Jacobson‘s report related to wiretaps that Mark Geragos was referring to.
Before I go to Amber Frey‘s attorney, Gloria Allred, and I want to ask her about Amber allegedly lying, let me read this. This is again from Steve Jacobson‘s report. From only days before that press conference, she informed us early on that she wanted to cooperate in this investigation, even stating she was tape recording her calls with Peterson. Yet, the evidence based on the intercepts has us to believe, it said, that Amber Frey still has a desire to have Scott Peterson in her life and that she may even lie or conspire with him to withhold evidence.
All right, Gloria, it seems pretty clear that early on the police did not trust Amber Frey. Do you agree with Jayne that this could become important fodder for cross-examination of your client?
ALLRED: I think Mark Geragos is going to do anything and everything he can to try to undermine, discredit, tear apart at Amber Frey and you know, he‘s going to have a real challenge on his hands because she‘s going to sit there and she‘s going to tell the truth and much of what she has to say is going to be corroborated and the best witness against Scott Peterson is Scott Peterson, not even Amber Frey who‘s going to be an excellent witness. Scott Peterson‘s own words on the tape I think are going to be a real problem for Mark Geragos and he knows it so he started this smear machine that was insinuendo and suggestion about what may have been speculated upon or not speculated upon early on. He‘s got a real problem because she‘s going to be a strong witness.
ABRAMS: All right...
ABRAMS: Dean—let me go to Dean for—Dean, I want to read you one more, this is from—again another one of Jacobson‘s reports with regard to wiretaps. It is not clear if she is recording every call, which I believe she may not be doing. Detective Brocchini stated when asked Amber Frey hasn‘t revealed her past conversations she had with Scott Peterson, although we‘ve intercepted them. Although Amber Frey is taking steps to cooperate with authorities, she remains secretive with previous conversations she has had with Scott Peterson.
Again, Dean, I ask you, you know is this really important cross-examination fodder for the defense?
JOHNSON: Oh, yes, this is important cross-examination. The basic thrust of Geragos‘ cross-examination is going to be, look she was initially a target of the investigation. We know how police work. We know how the Modesto police work and they gave her a choice between being a target of the investigation and cooperating in the investigation. And once she decided to cooperate, then she became their witness and this person that they suspected of being a liar all of a sudden tells nothing but the truth. I think you‘re go to see very much a Perry Mason moment...
JOHNSON: ... with Geragos and his cross-examination. We may hear that classic question, you know, where were you on the night of December 23...
JOHNSON: ... and that‘s—it‘s a theory. You know it‘s a theory.
ABRAMS: But Jayne...
JOHNSON: It‘s a circumstantial case...
ABRAMS: ... the problem—hang on Dean...
ABRAMS: ... hang on. Dean, Dean, hang on. Jayne, the problem is going to be that the tape speaks for itself. They‘re going to play hours and hours and hours of audiotapes of Scott Peterson speaking with Amber Frey...
WEINTRAUB: But that‘s part of the whole thing.
ABRAMS: Well not once...
WEINTRAUB: He never makes an admission.
ABRAMS: Wait. Wait...
WEINTRAUB: She tries to get him 1,500 ways...
ABRAMS: But not once is there any suggestion...
WEINTRAUB: ... to get him to make an admission. And he doesn‘t because he didn‘t do it, he doesn‘t admit it...
WEINTRAUB: ... and I think that‘s right for cross.
ABRAMS: That may be—look there‘s no question that that is somewhat helpful to Scott Peterson that he never says I did it because if he said I did it, he‘d be in even bigger trouble...
WEINTRAUB: Dan, how about this for a motive to lie on the witness stand? Quote from the affidavit. “Amber refers to Scott Peterson as her rainbow or pot of gold. Now that‘s one of the things I‘ve been saying all along. So even on January 15, 2003, she realizes and is seizing the moment to start setting up that bank account for herself for later. And don‘t you tell me, Gloria Allred that she has no plans and will never take any money. All you can say is she hasn‘t taken any money thus far.
WEINTRAUB: ... but a pot of gold? She sees this as her golden opportunity.
ALLRED: Well you know...
WEINTRAUB: This is cross-examination at its easiest...
ABRAMS: I think...
ABRAMS: Wait. She‘s mischaracterizing a little bit, but go ahead.
Go ahead Gloria.
ALLRED: You know Jayne, I heard you were a lawyer, I didn‘t know you were a psychic, but maybe that‘s what you would be better at is being a psychic if you think...
WEINTRAUB: I‘m a pretty good lawyer too Gloria...
ALLRED: ... you can predict the future so well. But let me just say this. What we‘re talking about are—you know it‘s basically hearsay upon hearsay. You don‘t have the raw materiel of what she said. So it‘s somebody‘s interpretation of what she said...
WEINTRAUB: So then that‘s also right for cross...
ALLRED: But you know what...
ALLRED: ... I just...
ABRAMS: Hang on. Hang on...
ALLRED: ... I can‘t wait for the raw material, those tape recordings between Amber and Scott to be played or those wiretaps. That, I think is going to be so revealing. And that‘s where you‘ll see the real...
ALLRED: ... Amber Frey. And you‘re never—I would doubt, and I bet you don‘t think so either that Scott Peterson is going to testify because he has told so many lies...
ALLRED: ... he has kept so many secrets there‘s no way...
ALLRED: ... he can get in the witness stand.
WEINTRAUB: ... he doesn‘t have to testify. He‘s got the Constitution on his side.
WEINTRAUB: Amber Frey...
WEINTRAUB: ... has nothing on her side.
ALLRED: Yes, well...
ABRAMS: OK, but she‘s not on trial...
ABRAMS: ... she‘s not on trial and he is. OK. But you know look, the bottom line is I think that the defense suggesting that these tapes are going to really be helpful to Scott Peterson is so much folly. These are not going to be helpful to him. How much they hurt him, separate question.
All right. Gloria Allred, Jayne Weintraub and Dean Johnson, thanks a lot. Appreciate it.
WEINTRAUB: Thank you.
ABRAMS: Laci‘s half sister, Amy Rocha, called as one of the first witnesses in the case. Police believe she was one of the last people, other than Scott Peterson to see Laci alive the day before she was reported missing. She was on the stand for about an hour. Prosecutors asked her questions about her sister‘s demeanor, most importantly what she was wearing, whether Laci seemed tired.
I‘m joined now by MSNBC‘s Jennifer London to preview what we‘re going to be seeing next week when Amy Rocha takes the stand again.
JENNIFER LONDON, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: Hey Dan. Yes, Amy Rocha will be back on the stand Monday for a complete cross-examination. She was the last witness to testify yesterday. Speaking about, among other things, as you mentioned, what Laci was wearing the day before she disappeared. Now one side note, Amy was very composed on the stand, she was very calm, her voice was very strong. She told the courts that Amy was wearing cream Capri pants and a black top with polka dots.
Other witnesses who testified earlier in the day saying that Laci was wearing black pants and a white shirt. Now both Scott and Laci were with Amy on the 23rd at the hair salon where Amy works in Modesto. Amy testifying that when she was cutting Scott‘s hair on the night of the 23rd, Scott said that he would go pick up a Christmas gift basket at Vella Farms on the 24th because he would be in the area that day to go golfing. Now this is important, Dan, because we know that Scott Peterson has said that he was fishing the day that Laci disappeared on Christmas Eve. So that will obviously be a point that is brought up when she‘s back on the stand on Monday.
ABRAMS: Jennifer London, we‘ll be there and we‘ll be checking in with you. Appreciate it.
Don‘t forget for an interactive timeline in the events in the Scott Peterson case, log on to abramsreport.msnbc.com.
Up next, another exclusive, the man al Qaeda trained to be a hijacker but went to the FBI instead before 9-11. Why they didn‘t believe him, coming up.
ABRAMS: We are back. More than a year before 9-11, a Pakistani British man told the FBI an incredible tale. That he had been trained by Osama bin Laden‘s followers to hijack airplanes and that he was now in the U.S. to carry out an attack. The FBI questioned him for weeks, but then let him go home and didn‘t follow up.
Now the former al Qaeda insider is talking in an exclusive interview with NBC‘s senior investigative correspondent Lisa Myers.
LISA MYERS, NBC SR. INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Niaz Khan says he warned the FBI more than a year before 9-11 that he had been sent to the U.S. to join up with five or six men, some of them pilots to hijack an airplane.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I‘ve been to Pakistan. I know about this hijacking. Something going on.
MYERS: In an exclusive interview Khan says he was recruited in Britain and trained in Pakistan for an unspecified terrorist mission.
(on camera): You knew it involved Osama bin Laden.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I knew.
MYERS: You knew it may involve violence?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, something like this.
MYERS (voice-over): But after his hijacker training and route to New York Khan had second thoughts, turned himself into the FBI and confessed. Ty Fearman (ph) was on the FBI squad that interrogated Khan in April 2000.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You ask the same questions over and over in different ways and he was credible.
MYERS (on camera): Khan passed two polygraphs. Still, FBI headquarters were skeptical and sent him back to London where he was released. Khan never heard from the FBI again.
(voice-over): The FBI insists it investigated Khan‘s story thoroughly, but Khan believes his warnings were ignored.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He believed me but maybe not seriously.
MYERS: The warnings of an al Qaeda insider, more evidence, critics say of the many missed clues before the worst attack on American soil.
Lisa Myers, NBC News, London.
ABRAMS: When we come back, O.J. Simpson speaking out just days before the 10th anniversary of his ex-wife‘s murder and her family is not happy about it. We‘ll hear what he had to say and talk with Nicole Brown‘s sister Denise.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do they believe happened to their mother?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That‘s something we‘ve never really spoke about.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABRAMS: Coming up, O.J. Simpson speaks out 10 years after the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. We‘ll talk to Nicole‘s sister Denise Brown.
ABRAMS: We are back. As the 10th anniversary of the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman approaches, O.J. Simpson is speaking out in interviews with various media outlets. Not surprisingly his comments have members of the victims‘ families up in arms. In a moment we‘ll talk to Nicole‘s sister Denise Brown, but first let‘s listen to a clip from Katie Couric‘s interview with O.J. Simpson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To this day many people remain convinced that you killed Nicole and her friend Ron Goldman. Do you worry that Sydney and Justin will someday come to the same conclusion?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why not?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. It would be a waste of time. I doubt that would ever happen. I know my kids know me and if they did, I would have to deal with it at that time. I certainly don‘t waste time worrying about it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They have never looked at you and said, dad, what happened to mom?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you have anything to do with it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I know that Nicole‘s parents, you mentioned Lou and Juditha, you say you have a good relationship with them. Can you describe your relationship?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, you know, Judy and I have spoken over the years quite often. We tend to try to keep it, you know, towards the kids.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABRAMS: You can see that interview in its entirety tonight on “Dateline” at 8:00 p.m. on NBC.
Joining me now is Nicole Brown Simpson‘s sister Denise Brown who runs the Nicole Brown Charitable Foundation. Denise, thank you so much for taking the time to come on the program. I appreciate it.
DENISE BROWN, NICOLE BROWN SIMPSON‘S SISTER: You‘re welcome. Thank you.
ABRAMS: Let me begin by just asking you to respond to what we heard O.J. Simpson just say there. First, he says that the two children, Sydney and Justin never talk about it. Have you ever heard them talk about Nicole‘s death or who may have been responsible?
BROWN: No. No. That‘s something that we don‘t talk about either. If that‘s the case down there in Florida, I don‘t know. But, no, that is something that we don‘t talk about. Because, you know, I truly believe, and everybody knows this that I believe that Simpson murdered my sister. And why—you know, I know—I can understand why the children don‘t want to talk about it because out of my mouth they would hear the truth. And so I can understand that they don‘t want to hear that.
BROWN: Why put them through more pain than they‘ve already been in?
They‘ve lost their mother.
ABRAMS: There is—The Associated Press just put out an interview that they did with O.J. Simpson that appears sometime today and I want to read you a couple of lines. It says, he said he has given up his much publicized pledge to search for the real killer because of the demands of raising two teenage children and paying for their education.
Quote—“I no longer have the money to pay to follow up these leads.”
BROWN: He‘s looking for the killer. He should be—he looks at the killer every morning when he shaves or when he washes his face in his bathroom. But besides that, you know he makes $25,000 a month. A mean a lot of people make that in a year. I think if I were to make $25,000 a month I would be very happy and I would be able to put my kids through college.
Like, for instance, now he‘s asking Sydney to dip into the money that her mother left her to pay for the rest of the college tuition. And that‘s a lot of money that he‘s asking her to dish out because he doesn‘t think that he needs to pay for it. So I think you know as a batterer, I can understand his wanting to control everything that his mother has ever—that their mother has ever left the children, you know, just trying to control Nicole in one more aspect of, you know, his whole power and control over her when she was alive.
He‘s still trying to control everything that she has and everything that she left for those children and everything she loved so dearly. He‘s still trying to do it 10 years later. So he is absolutely a typical batterer in his mentality about the power and control over one human being and he‘s still doing it. And now he‘s making Sydney pay for a portion—a huge portion of her tuition, which I think is absolutely wrong.
ABRAMS: How does he have money? I mean people—you know people say he lost this $33.5 million judgment in a civil lawsuit. How is it that he‘s got this cash?
BROWN: Who, Simpson?
BROWN: Oh, that‘s from his NFL pension.
BROWN: That‘s untouchable.
BROWN: I mean nobody‘s able to touch that. So he has that, and he‘s got money stashed all over the place. I mean I know that too and you know for him to cry poverty and things like that, I mean that‘s just a bunch of B.S.
ABRAMS: Let me read you—you‘ve heard about this already, I know, that on Fox News channel he had these words to say about you, specifically.
BROWN: Oh, from Greta‘s show?
ABRAMS: He said, and I quote, “I am sure the income is down on the foundation that she works for, which I would imagine makes her income go down. I don‘t think anyone‘s bills have been paid more than Denise‘s from what came from that trial. I have no feeling towards it one way or the other at this point in my life. But they got another five minutes, they got another opportunity and they‘re taking advantage of it. Your reaction?
BROWN: Well first of all, how does he know what the foundation is doing? Actually it‘s doing really well and we are going to have transitional homes all across the country, hopefully eventually and our first one will be up between June 12 of 2004 and June 12 of 2005. So that is an awesome accomplishment within the last 10 years. I have not gotten a salary from the Nicole Brown Charitable Foundation since 1999. I was on salary. I made $17,000 and people were up in arms because I made some money from it that the board of directors actually approved. But since then I figured you know what, I‘m not going to take one dime even if it‘s approved by the board and I‘m going to do this all on a voluntary basis. So $17,000 I don‘t think a rich man makes.
ABRAMS: And what do you make of his general accusation that somehow you‘re profiting from this entire incident...
BROWN: I don‘t know. I don‘t know. You know because I did have a $1-million contract and that was with Judith Reagan, but when she wanted all the tabloid stories and all the carp (ph) partying and the cocaine and all that kind of stuff, and I told her—I said that was not my sister‘s life. And I did not take the money. Nobody can give me enough money—I mean they could give me 10 million, 20 million, $100 million, I will never, ever write a tabloid, a story about my sister because that wasn‘t her life.
So I don‘t really know how I profited from all of this because I turned down $1-million book deal. I haven‘t written a book. I work for the foundation. I made $17,000. I do go out on speaking events, but that‘s in October and April and I don‘t think that makes a rich person either. So, I don‘t know...
BROWN: ... I don‘t know how I profited from all of this.
ABRAMS: I‘m going to ask you if you would to stay with us for a little bit. I want to ask you, apparently O.J. Simpson had also said that he is angry with your sister at times. I‘d like to get your reaction to that.
ABRAMS: We‘ll talk a little bit more when we come back and hear more of what O.J. Simpson had to say to Katie Couric.
Don‘t forget your e-mails, email@example.com. I respond at the end of the show.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do they believe happened to their mother?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That‘s something we‘ve never really spoke about.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Never?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Never.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In 10 years the subject...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... of their mother‘s death, her murder has never come ever?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Never, ever and as I said, I think I‘ve certainly spent enough money to get the advice of some of the best child psychologists and psychologists and psychiatrists in the country and they all say when the kids are ready to talk about it, they‘ll talk about it. Thus far they haven‘t.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Justin was quoted in “The Miami Herald” in October of 2002 saying from time to time I think about it. But I just have to get it through my system when it comes into my mind. Then I just move on. So those times that he thinks about it, he never talks about it with you?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, Justin, he‘s a remarkable kid in that even when he‘s got other things on his mind, he has a tendency to turn it inward and he‘ll go to his room and do what he has to do. And you know quite often I‘ll say what‘s on your mind, what‘s going on, did something happen in school today or maybe he split up with his girlfriend or something. He‘s always pretty reluctant to get into it. He says dad, I‘ll be all right. Just leave me alone. I‘ll be all right.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABRAMS: O.J. Simpson speaking out almost 10 years to the day after the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman.
We‘re joined once again by Denise Brown, who is the sister of Nicole Brown Simpson. When you see O.J. Simpson speaking and you actually as opposed to just hearing about what he said, but when you actually see and hear it, what‘s your reaction?
BROWN: Actually I haven‘t even seen it. I haven‘t seen the interview. The only thing that I—that when I did hear about Greta Van Susteren‘s interview with him, it says that he‘s angry with Nicole.
ABRAMS: Let me read from that and then I‘m going to get your thoughts on it. He said...
ABRAMS: ... he said, I‘m angry with her. I‘m angry that she found herself hanging out with this group of—who are these people. And he went on to say something else he‘s angry about. There are times I‘m angry at her when I feel that there are things that she could be doing with the kids better and I, you know when—if it‘s the emotional stuff especially with my daughter. I‘m angry with her.
I‘m sorry for interrupting you.
BROWN: Well then why did he kill her? Nicole would still be here if
he wouldn‘t have murdered her. And you know I mean if he‘s having problems
-- Sydney and Justin, they were ordered by the court, Judge Nancy
Weedmanstock (ph) to go to their father, to go live with their father. It
was a decision that was made by the Orange County courts here in California
and it was a decision that she could have waited on because he was found
liable in the civil trial and if she would have waited for that liable
decision, she could have made a different decision on where those children
went today. So if he‘s having problems with them, why doesn‘t he send her
to talk to us, talk to her grandmother, talk to women in her - in his life
· in her life.
ABRAMS: It sounds like what he‘s saying and part of him is saying he‘s angry that she‘s not around to help him take care of the children. And the other part is...
BROWN: Well why did he get rid of her...
BROWN: ... you know...
ABRAMS: The other part is why did—you know he seems to be saying he‘s angry about who she was hanging out with, suggesting that those people may have been responsible for what happened to Nicole.
BROWN: Well of course, but he‘s been saying that all along, hasn‘t he? I mean he won‘t admit that he murdered Nicole and Ron and he would never admit that I don‘t think unless he had probably a $10 billion deal going and maybe then he‘d finally admit it. But you know, it is amazing because I met Faye Resnick for the very first time at Nicole‘s funeral. So for her to be such a best friend and write a book and do all that stuff, I don‘t buy either.
You know I mean that is—I don‘t believe that she had anything to do with the murders of Nicole because the story that they were saying about the Asian mafia or something like that following Simpson down and it was all drug related. Well I heard that story in May and Nicole was murdered in June. He‘d already told us that story. So what, he premeditated Nicole‘s murder? Because it was all something that was related to Faye Resnick, wasn‘t it?
BROWN: So these are things that I already heard...
BROWN: I heard it actually on Mother‘s Day.
ABRAMS: Yes. And you know you‘re going to come back a few days from now and we‘re going to talk about your memories of Nicole and looking back 10 years at how this has all been for you. But let me ask you before we have to let you go, you have recently been speaking out about Marcia Clark, the prosecutor, and you have said in retrospect that you really didn‘t like her a whole lot, right?
BROWN: Well I think Marcia Clark was a very insensitive person. I think that what she did when my sister Dominique and I walked up to her office and having the autopsy photos there of my sister‘s throat cut open I think is horribly insensitive because we had a choice whether or not we wanted to see those photos and go into the courtroom. I think Judge Ito did a horrific job. But I do tell you one thing, that I am very happy that the televisions were in the courtroom because nobody would have believed that O.J. Simpson had this—was capable of abusing my sister as badly as she was abused.
BROWN: I mean she lived 17 years—we have documented of abuse from the hands of O.J. Simpson to my sister. So, if the court TVs would not have been in the courtroom, I don‘t think people would have believed that and I don‘t think we would have been able to accomplish as much as we have for domestic violence, victims of domestic violence, traveling around the country speaking out on behalf of women and children who are running for their lives through the Nicole Brown Charitable Foundation if it wouldn‘t have been for those cameras in that courtroom.
ABRAMS: Denise Brown, good to see you again and...
BROWN: Thank you.
ABRAMS: ... thanks for coming back. We‘ll see you at the end of next week...
ABRAMS: ... on the 11th. Thank you very much.
BROWN: Great. Thank you.
ABRAMS: Coming up, why I don‘t really care why CIA Director George Tenet resigned. It‘s my “Closing Argument”.
And a programming note—this weekend MSNBC‘ special coverage of the 60th anniversary of D-Day. Tonight Joe Scarborough hosts his show from Normandy. Tomorrow at 6:00 p.m., I‘ll look at the intelligence the allies used to pull off the D-Day invasion.
Log on to d-day.msnbc.com, a special interactive look at D-Day.
ABRAMS: Coming up, why I say it doesn‘t really matter why CIA Director George Tenet resigned. It‘s my “Closing Argument”...
ABRAMS: My “Closing Argument”—why it doesn‘t really matter why CIA Director George Tenet resigned yesterday. For the past 24 hours, it seems the Washington Press Corps has been obsessed with trying to figure out, did he resign for personal reasons as he claims, or did he leave to avoid scathing criticism from three agency reports expected in the next few months or was he forced out by President Bush?
While it is interesting, does it really matter? He‘s gone. The CIA will be criticized for failing to better prevent 9/11 and for providing faulty intelligence about Iraq‘s weapons programs. Tenet will take the heat as a former CIA director no matter why he left. If the argument goes, it‘s a relevant political issue if the president forced him out, I wonder why.
The president is still publicly defending Tenet saying he‘s done a superb job and nothing can change the fact that he was the president‘s CIA director during the relevant period. Now he‘s gone no matter why. If Tenet or the president is going to be criticized, the fact that Tenet has resigned won‘t blunt it. It‘s true, some were saying Tenet would have been a political liability but he left. Whether he chose to leave or was forced out doesn‘t change the fact that he‘s gone.
There are few things more important to this nation right now than the work of the CIA, but in this context, why its director chose to leave is little more than Washington gossip.
All right, I‘ve had my say. Now it‘s time for “Your Rebuttal”. In his opening statement, Scott Peterson‘s attorney Mark Geragos argued that science will prove that Laci‘s baby was born alive, which if true, would mean the prosecution‘s theory is wrong that Laci was killed in her home. And if jurors believe it, it would almost certainly mean he gets acquitted.
I believe that.
Bonnie from Woodland Hills, California. “Your statement that if baby Conner was born alive means Scott Peterson walks is insane to me. How can any rational person think it‘s possible? If that baby was born alive, then how come baby Conner‘s body was not in the same state of decomposition as Laci‘s? Did the real killer dump Laci‘s body in the bay and then later return and dump the baby‘s?”
All right, Bonnie, I‘m not defending this theory, but let me explain to you what they‘re going to argue. They stay that the baby was likely in some sort of plastic bag, protected from the elements until a few days before he was found. Remember, of course, for those who don‘t follow this case that closely, Laci‘s body was found far more decomposed than the baby. And the prosecutors believe that‘s because the baby was expelled after Laci had died.
Attorney Mark Geragos argued Laci‘s hair may have been found in Scott‘s boat because she visited the warehouse where the boat was stored on December 20.
From Nashville, Tennessee Cindy writes, “If he plans on saying that Laci went to the storage unit and climbed in that boat, he‘s going to have at least one woman on that jury that won‘t buy it. If they‘ve ever been pregnant, they will know that in the last trimester it is not easy to get in and out of the car much less climb on to a boat that‘s sitting on a trailer in a storage unit.” Very interesting point, Cindy.
On Wednesday night, when I was in Redwood City, one of Scott Peterson‘s relatives stopped by the set to correct one of my guests who wrongly said that Peterson was sleeping with Amber Frey after Laci went missing.
Jennifer Hopkins from La Crescenta, California. “Yesterday‘s show really got me fired up. One of Scott Peterson‘s relatives had to stop by during the commercial break to clear up any confusion regarding when Scott was and wasn‘t sleeping with Amber Frey. Who cares? That doesn‘t change the fact that he still cheated on his wife.”
Last night we debated a ruling in New Jersey, which found that ladies‘ nights with discount admission and drinks for women is unconstitutional, gender bias against men.
Tonia in Barnesville, Ohio. “Are we going to force restaurants to take the senior section off their menus? Why should someone over 55 pay less for their food than me? What about children‘s menus? Why can‘t I get a grilled cheese and fries if I‘m over 12 for 2.99? To clarify why ladies‘ nights only verges on discrimination is because bar owners are not trying to keep anyone out. They‘re doing just the opposite. They want more men to come in.”
From Woodstock, Illinois, Jason Hauck. “If there were no such thing as ladies‘ night, a man would pay full price for a beer anyway, but with less scenery. What‘s next? The people at TGI Friday‘s can‘t sing happy birthday and present a cake in the restaurant because it‘s not everybody‘s birthday? Great show Dan. I‘m off to the local ladies‘ night.” All right, see you there Jason.
And finally, Tom Swezey in Minneapolis, Minnesota. “I have a solution to your ladies‘ night problem - I love this one - just have the bar come up with a group of discount drinks with very effeminate names and serve them with little flowers or umbrellas. They could then offer them to anyone. No macho guy going to a bar to pick up women is going to order a pink lady slipper.”
Your e-mails, firstname.lastname@example.org. We go through them at the end of the show.
Coming up next, “HARDBALL” with Chris Matthews. Don‘t forget, tomorrow night at 6:00 p.m., I‘ll be hosting a special hour of THE ABRAMS REPORT on D-Day, looking at the intelligence the allies used to pull off the invasion.
Thanks for watching and I will see you tomorrow.
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