Guest: Eduardo Mansur, Beth Holloway Twitty, Wendy Murphy, Joe Cardinale, Joe Tacopina, Larry Bruck, Walter Zalisko, Peter Knerler, Bo Dietl, Greg Esslinger, Jayne Weintraub, Stacey Honowitz, Judi Villa, Jewel Palovak
RITA COSBY, HOST: And good evening, everybody. We‘ve got another big show coming your way tonight, LIVE AND DIRECT. People on the same ship as the groom who went overboard on his honeymoon—what do they know? And we‘ll hear from another family whose loved one is also missing after going on board. And a man and a woman get devoured by a grizzly bear, and it‘s all caught on tape. The incredible story is ahead.
But first, a shocking accusation out of Aruba tonight, and if it‘s true, it might point police in a whole different direction than the man who is now behind bars. Let‘s go LIVE AND DIRECT to the island of Aruba, where NBC‘s Michelle Kosinski is standing by live.
MICHELLE KOSINSKI, NBC CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Rita. This is something the local newspaper has been talking about...
COSBY: What happened?
KOSINSKI: ... for some time. But they‘ve also been taking some criticism from people saying that they‘re not using an authentic document. Well, today, the local newspaper decided to put their money where their mouth is. They printed what they say is a copy of a police declaration in which police detailed what they say Joran Van Der Sloot told them as they walked along the beach on June 13.
Police say in this allegedly authentic document that Joran said he left Natalee Holloway asleep on the beach and then left. And then he said he feels that Deepak Kalpoe raped and killed Natalee, then buried her in that area. We haven‘t seen the document. That is what the paper says they have printed in today‘s edition.
Also today, for the first time in a long time, suspect Joran Van Der Sloot was not interrogated. His attorneys say they think interrogators are simply regrouping because they say they‘re asking him the same exact questions every single day, and he is keeping his mouth shut—Rita.
COSBY: All right. Thank you very much, Michelle Kosinski. We appreciate it.
Well, this allegation could be a bombshell, but some of the language is not so crystal clear. Here‘s part of what the “Diario” newspaper there in Aruba is reporting, what Joran Van Der Sloot said to police. Now, when Joran was listed—he‘s listed here as JAP. You can see it there. He was asked what happened between Natalee Holloway and Deepak Kalpoe. Quote, it says, “He declared that he thought that the suspect, D. Kalpoe, raped and killed the girl”—some pretty stern (ph) language.
I‘m going to read it to you again. He says he thought that D. Kalpoe had declared that he had thought that he had—that the suspect, D. Kalpoe, had raped and killed the girl. Again, there‘s some conditioning in the language there.
And joining me now from Aruba, Eduardo Mansur with the “Diario” newspaper. Eduardo, how did you get this document, to begin with?
EDUARDO MANSUR, “DIARIO”: OK, outside of the newspaper, we have a mailbox that people bring us all kinds of information, and they dropped it in there.
COSBY: Do you believe it‘s credible? Do you believe it‘s legitimate?
MANSUR: Oh, yes. It‘s got signatures of four detectives, whom I know, so we know it‘s credible.
COSBY: Why did you think it was important to publish it?
MANSUR: Sorry? I couldn‘t hear you.
COSBY: Why did you think it was important to publish it, to release it right now?
MANSUR: Well, because of what Joran says in the declaration, that he thinks that Deepak raped and killed Natalee.
COSBY: Now, in the statement, he uses the words “he thinks.” You know, you guys have been covering this case, I think, better than anybody. You‘re there on the ground. Why do you think he uses the language “he thinks” versus “he knows”?
MANSUR: I couldn‘t tell you that. I don‘t get much into the legal stuff. But that‘s what he says. That‘s what the declaration says.
COSBY: Tell me also—there‘s another line in it, too, where he says something about Natalee falling asleep on the beach. What does he say about that?
MANSUR: Well, I don‘t know much of the details, but I know he said something that he left Natalee sleeping on the beach.
COSBY: How are police reacting to the publication of this? And what‘s the mood there in the community?
MANSUR: I have no idea yet. I‘ve been too busy doing the search, so I have not been really updated yet on the matter.
COSBY: Are people, though, surprised? I mean, this is pretty strong language. And then on the other hand, we have Joran in jail. You know, we‘ve got Joran, and Deepak‘s out. How to do people sort of reconcile that?
MANSUR: Don‘t ask me, ma‘am. I wouldn‘t know that. It‘s better off if you ask a lawyer.
COSBY: All right. And in fact, we‘re going to bring in a couple different folks. We‘re going to bring in someone who‘s been following this case a lot. Eduardo, we thank you very much.
Deepak and his brother, Satish, are free men today, as we just pointed out, but they‘ve been considered suspects since Natalee vanished. In fact, just days ago, we showed you some exclusive video of Natalee‘s mom, Beth Twitty, confronting Deepak at the Internet cafe where he works. That was about the night that her daughter disappeared. Beth actually went over, and apparently, Deepak said very, very little to her in return. She tried to confront him to finally get some answers in this case. And as you can see, it does not look like there was very much conversation that took place.
Tonight, Beth Twitty joins us LIVE AND DIRECT from the island. Beth, we‘re just getting some information from Eduardo because this report was just released. How do you feel? There‘s some pretty tough language in this declaration that “El Diario” is reporting today, saying that Deepak may have, unfortunately, you know, raped and may have killed your daughter. This is very tough.
BETH HOLLOWAY TWITTY, NATALEE HOLLOWAY‘S MOTHER: Oh, Rita, we‘ve been dealing with this since as early as June 10. You know, I think that was a day that myself and Jug and Natalee Holloway‘s father and stepmother—we had to face some pretty tough facts that day. That was when the—as they call, the finger-pointing was beginning. The boys were beginning to—you know, not defend themselves, but it was, He did it, and He did it. And so, you know, that‘s not a good sign, in my opinion, so you know, that‘s—that‘s already a huge red flag for us they have all committed some terrible crime against Natalee.
COSBY: And we do appreciate you being on. I know this is tough to talk about. But do you think Deepak may have played a bigger role? I mean, it‘s ironic (INAUDIBLE) Joran behind bars right now, but Deepak is roaming free.
TWITTY: Oh, absolutely. And that‘s why I was outraged on July the 4th, you know. And I had already known as early as July the 1st that Deepak and Satish‘s story, or their last place that they said that they last left and saw Joran and Natalee at the beach, was already beginning to, it was beginning to fall apart. I mean, you know, witnesses were coming forward and making holes all in that. So it‘s been tough not only since June 10, but I‘ve steadily seen a decline in any credibility whatsoever in Deepak and Satish Kalpoe.
COSBY: Is your gut telling you that Deepak did play a bigger role, or do you think this is just part of the finger-pointing?
TWITTY: Oh—well, no, I mean, I think that is—that is the reason why, is because he does have—they do have huge involvement in this. Now, what I don‘t know—but you know, Rita, we always hold out, of course, as her parents, for the hope that, you know, they didn‘t go ahead and kill her that night. But you know, we were having to even raise that possible question on June 10, as early as then, that it could be a possibility...
COSBY: How frustrated are you with authorities?
TWITTY: ... that she may not be alive.
COSBY: How frustrated, Beth? And Beth, of course, we‘re praying that she is, of course, alive, as I know you are so much. But how frustrated are with authorities that, you know, here we have these statements, and yet it seems like so little movement on fact (ph) of the Aruban government?
TWITTY: Well, I know I think I‘ve been pretty verbal about it all along. I mean, I was outraged, as I said. July the 4th, I was completely shocked. I was completely shocked when the Kalpoe brothers were released, you know, and even as the stories—you know, the beach trip, you know, and holes were made all in that, I‘m continued to be shocked. So you know, you‘re asking me how frustrated I am. I‘m hugely frustrated, but you know, there‘s nothing I can do about it but just keep hanging onto those last threads (ph) of the boys that I can. And one of the things I did was go into the Internet cafe, just one last shot at seeing if he would present himself in front of me and even deny any involvement. And he can‘t even do that.
COSBY: Yes, he didn‘t even say anything, right?
TWITTY: He didn‘t say anything. But you know, if I had no involvement with Natalee‘s disappearance or the crime that has been committed against her, I would certainly defend myself. I wouldn‘t wait on my lawyer to set beside me to say, I can‘t speak right now. I mean, it just doesn‘t make any sense, Rita.
COSBY: No, it doesn‘t at all. And I tell you, there‘s something definitely very fishy here.
Stay with us, if you could, Beth, because I want to bring into the conversation now, if I could, former New York City police detective Joe Cardinale. Also, defense attorney Joe Tacopina, and also former prosecutor Wendy Murphy.
Wendy, what do you make of this statement, this declaration, if, indeed, this is correct, what “El Diario” is reporting, and Joran said that Deepak had something horrible like this to do with Natalee? This is pretty strong stuff.
WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: I think the most important observation is what Natalee Holloway‘s mom just said, that this came out, Rita, on June 13, some two weeks after Natalee went missing, long after these guys had a chance to lawyer up, to get help from the father/judge wannabe of Joran. And what I see this is as a rather obvious strategy from a slick series of three guys who were involved, one of whom is probably the killer, probably Joran, but they were slick enough to know that the best thing you can do when only three people know what happened and you want to get away with it scot-free is point the finger at each other, make a mess of things.
I call this the cross-finger-pointing problem. When everybody has a little bit of involvement but they stick together like glue and blame each other, that is the most damned frustrating kind of case for law enforcement to deal with! Because if you prosecute Joran, there‘s enough reasonable doubt about whether Deepak did it. If you prosecute Deepak, there‘s doubt about Satish and Joran. It‘s exactly what frustrated the Ramsey case, the Eisenberg case in Florida, the Skakel case for a very long time!
Only three people in the entire world are potentially responsible for Natalee‘s disappearance and probable murder, and we can‘t solve that case! I mean, think about that! That is outrageous! And it‘s because they lawyered up, they played the system. They‘re each pointing the finger at each other! What a joke!
COSBY: Let me bring in Joe Cardinale because doesn‘t this muddy the waters, Joe?
JOE CARDINALE, FORMER NYPD DETECTIVE: Oh, most certainly does. I mean, I agree with her. You know, from the beginning, you have the three individuals that are named here. Two were cut loose. And the fact that they lawyer up—and for a law enforcement right now, what they have do is, they have to go out there and check out every lead that—you know, from these statements. They have to go out—just like in the Peterson case, when they said there was people out there that were walking the dog and it was the occult involved in that. They had to check out every lead. And now they have to do this to prove it or disprove it because it‘s all part of the case right now.
COSBY: So how, as a cop, Joe Cardinale, do you pin this down now?
CARDINALE: Well, it‘s—you know, you‘re going to go back to their statements. And that‘s about the only thing we have right now, is their statements from the beginning. You have to re-interview them, all right, go over with the new evidence, and you have to go back to each one of them, interview both of them, the brothers separately, you know, take them and see what they have to say. And they‘re going to probably recant on certain issues, and you write down what they recant on, and then you focus on that.
But as it was stated, these are people that have lawyered up. They have the system working for them. Naturally, it‘s not our system. You know, we‘re bound by the laws down in Aruba. And that‘s a problem, all right, because we can‘t step in and say, Hey, you know, we would do it this way. You know, it‘s being done their way.
And once again, let‘s go back to the first 48 hours. I mean, they had plenty of time to do what they had to do. And they planned this out and they said, Well, this is what we‘ll do, and just keep pointing the fingers at each other. And that‘s what‘s going to happen. It‘s going to create confusion and it‘s going to create doubt, and that‘s exactly what the defense likes.
COSBY: Let me bring in Joe Tacopina. Joe, also, we still have with us Beth Holloway Twitty. What advice would you give her, at this point, Joe?
JOE TACOPINA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Ms. Twitty?
TACOPINA: Obviously, as a parent, Rita, you want her to hang in there, but also not try and get involved in the investigation, like she‘s been doing. And I—you know, despite her emotions, which are understandable, you don‘t want her giving up any trade secrets, anything that maybe these suspects don‘t yet know that she‘s learned. So that‘d be my biggest concern with her being so involved. Sorry for my voice, by the way.
COSBY: Yes. We‘ve all been fighting a hoarse voice this week. No problem, Joe.
Beth, I do have to ask you about the belt, too, while we have you here because one of the focuses—if we can show some pictures of this belt? This was pretty incredible. What the private investigator, Art Wood, found by the lighthouse looks very similar, this belt that they found that we showed last night, to the belt that Joran was holding up in a picture. Could that maybe be a good piece of the puzzle for you, Beth? Are you holding out hope that maybe there‘s something there physically now?
TWITTY: You know, Rita, I‘m really taking the advice of one that was on your panel, and I‘m really trying not to get too involved on those pieces of evidence. So I have not seen the belt. And you know, as long as it‘s been turned over to the proper authorities, I‘m going to—I‘m climbing out of that one.
COSBY: Well, we hope that you get some clues. And I understand you‘re going to get more support, Beth, that your own mom is coming down there soon. Why did she think it was important to be there?
TWITTY: You know, I think that she just needed to come and be where Natalee is, and I just thought—I thought it would be helpful for her. And you know, I would—you know, I want to spend some time with her, and she‘s willing to make the trip. It‘s going to be a long trip for her, but I think she‘ll do well. And I think it‘ll be good for both of us.
COSBY: I‘m sure it will be. And Beth, our prayers are with you. I hope you get some good answers soon. And everybody else, thank you for being here. We‘ll talk with you soon, Beth. Thank you.
TWITTY: Thank you.
COSBY: We‘ll have a lot more on this story as the Aruba story develops. We‘re staying on this wall to wall.
But first, there‘s another mysterious disappearance that we are all over tonight. Here‘s a glimpse of what‘s ahead in the rest of the show.
Coming up: a nightmare honeymoon. The groom goes overboard, probably pushed. And now we‘ve learned this isn‘t the only time it‘s happened. The truth about cruise ship crime.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There could have been foul play here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Another teacher busted for sex with her student gets off easy.
Why do women get special treatment for their lusty lessons with students?
And a deadly grizzly bear attack caught on tape. Now the tape is coming to a theater near you. That‘s ahead LIVE AND DIRECT.
COSBY: Tonight, few answers in the case of missing honeymooner George Smith. He disappeared from a cruise on July 5. His new wife, Jennifer, has not spoken out publicly and says she has no idea what happened to him. Two passengers who were on board that ship with George Smith join me now to talk about what they saw, Larry Bruck and also Walter Zalisko.
Larry, I‘ve got to ask you, did they announce anything on the ship at all so you knew that something was awry?
LARRY BRUCK, CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER: Rita, they did make an announcement on July 5, the same day as we were in Turkey. We personally had just come back from a tour of Turkey, and we had heard over the loudspeaker in our room there was a missing person. There was no word of male, female, old, young, but that was our announcement, and that...
COSBY: Now, did you believe...
BRUCK: ... came from the captain.
COSBY: Did you believe foul play was involved, Larry?
BRUCK: Not initially, but when we heard about the blood and the amount of the blood, it seemed to make some of the rumors a little bit more realistic about the possibility of foul play.
COSBY: Now, Walter, let me bring you in. You‘re a police chief. You‘re also an international police consultant, you know, so you have a good nose for these kind of things. What do you think happened?
WALTER ZALISKO, CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER: Well, Rita, it‘s really difficult to say. There‘s a lot of speculation as to what really occurred there. We know that there was some type of a confrontation in that room. We know that there were three individuals in that room. And we do know that George Smith—well, we believe it‘s George Smith that did go overboard, and that that is his blood on that canopy.
What we have heard a lot, that he was drinking in the casino with these three individuals, that they had brought him back to the room, that there was a discussion about that he had a lot of money with him, that he had just gotten married. And somewhere, I heard that $50,000 came into play, that he was bragging that he had that on board with him.
COSBY: So do you think—do you think, Walter, robbery was the motive? Is that what you believe?
ZALISKO: I would think that that‘s a good place to start this investigation, that there possibly was some type of a robbery occurring in that room.
COSBY: Larry, what do you think, based everything you‘ve heard? You were on that ship.
BRUCK: Robbery would be the first indication in this situation. He was talking in the casino—from what I understand and through rumors, that he was talking about a sum of money, that it was in his room. We later heard that it could be anywhere from $50,000 to $55,000. So money is as good a reason as any right now.
COSBY: Walter, what do you think in terms of the investigation?
What‘s happening with the FBI right now and also the Turkish authorities?
ZALISKO: Well, I think the investigation is in good hands with our FBI. They‘re a very competent agency, and I think they will get down to the bottom of this.
COSBY: Do you think it‘s in good hands with the Turkish authorities?
ZALISKO: Well, there‘s the problem. That‘s where it lies. I don‘t think the Turkish authorities were capable to conduct a complete investigation at the time. From my experiences instructing police agencies in Europe, Russia, Ukraine, their investigative techniques are somewhat primitive yet. And that‘s what I think happened here in Turkey. They did respond to the scene. They probably took some basic photographs. They maybe swabbed up some of the blood samples. But as far as sending it out for any in-depth analysis, I don‘t think that was done.
COSBY: Larry, let me get you real quick. Do you think we‘re going to ever know what happened to George Smith?
BRUCK: Not right away. It‘s going to take a while. It‘s been a month now, and it could very easily be several months more.
COSBY: All right. Both of you, thank you very much. We appreciate your perspective, being there on the ship.
And Smith‘s case is not the first of its kind. Peter Knerler‘s sister, Annette Meisener (ph), went missing while on a cruise a year-and-a-half ago. He joins me now live. Peter, actually, it happened in December 2004, is that correct?
PETER KNERLER, SISTER WENT MISSING ON CRUISE: That‘s correct.
COSBY: So it wasn‘t that long ago. Forgive me. What happened with your sister?
KNERLER: Well, she was on a cruise with my parents, and my sister had taken her daughter along. The last night of the cruise, it was between 9:30 or 10:00 at night, when they determined that she went overboard. She was supposed to be at 10:o‘clock 00 reporting to a bingo game, and she did show up. So my parents started looking for her. And a short time later, they asked to do a search of the entire cruise ship, and they did that search three times. They did not find her at all on board at that point in time.
The Coast Guard was contacted. The Coast Guard ordered the ship to turn around. Now, this was three hours after she was initially determined to have been overboard. The water temperature at the time, 66 degrees. Statistically, a person can survive in the water 4 to 6 hours, depending on body fat content and what they‘re wearing, and all that. Well, she had been...
COSBY: Do you think happened, Peter?
KNERLER: ... in the water...
COSBY: What do you think? Do you think it was (INAUDIBLE)
KNERLER: As far as what exactly did happen was, they found her purse on deck next to a rail, and there was beads on the purse that were torn off. At the same time, the security camera that was there was covered up. It was covered up with—I‘m not sure if it was a ship brochure or something. It was a security camera that was monitored only. It‘s not used for taping purposes.
COSBY: Now, do you believe—does it look like it was intentionally covered up, from what you gather?
COSBY: Oh, that‘s interesting.
KNERLER: From what I understand, it was intentionally—it was intentionally covered up because of the fact that this security camera is at least six, seven feet off of the deck floor. I mean, you have to purposefully put it up there. You can‘t just, you know, the wind blew up it there. It doesn‘t cut, doesn‘t work.
COSBY: Now, the FBI, they came into play in your sister‘s case. Did you feel like they were helpful?
KNERLER: Initially, at the beginning, they were helpful. And then after that, things just died. There was, like, no information being given back to the families. And it‘s not just my family that was frustrated with this situation. I‘ve been in contact with several other families that this situation happened to last year. We had the Chris Cadwell (ph) situation July 23 last year. You have Glen Sheridan (ph), which was November 26 last year. And the FBI was involved, and once again, there‘s no indications as far as what happened. These people went missing overboard.
As far as the number of occurrences, do you have any idea, Rita, how many people went overboard this year from a cruise ship?
COSBY: I‘ve heard some numbers. What do you—you probably know better. What do you—what are they?
KNERLER: Well, there‘s been—as far as what I‘ve been able to come up with, there‘s been 10 occurrences this year. Now, out of the 10, there‘s between 4 or 6 that these people actually are still missing. Other people went overboard, and they were recovered a half an hour, 45 minutes later.
COSBY: Now, do you think...
KNERLER: But how many of these cases have you heard of?
COSBY: And you‘re right, you don‘t hear about a lot of them. I want to ask you about your sister‘s case real quick, Peter. Do you think that it was foul play? What do you, in your gut, think happened to your sister, real briefly?
KNERLER: Based on the facts of what we know, that her purse was tore up a little bit—she had won a couple of games of bingo, so—it wasn‘t that much money, you know, $500,000. So was the motive robbery? Don‘t know. But at the same time, the evidence would suggest that there was foul play because somebody had purposefully covered up that camera.
COSBY: Well, I hope you get some answers. It‘s been a long time. Thank you very much for being with us, Peter, and drawing attention to and important problem.
And there are apparently a lot more crimes aboard cruise ships, so why don‘t you hear about them? We were just talking about this with Peter. Is it a case of a cover-up? That‘s next.
And another teacher is accused of having sex with her students. Will she get off easy, like the last one?
And later: Two people filming bears get too close for comfort, lose their life, and it‘s all caught on camera. The details LIVE AND DIRECT. It‘s an incredible story. You got to stick around.
ANNOUNCER: From MSNBC world headquarters, here is Rita Cosby.
COSBY: Well, investigators are still trying to piece together what happened to missing groom George Smith, who disappeared on his honeymoon cruise. And many experts familiar with the cruise industry are not surprised that the investigation seems to be stalled.
It‘s the ultimate getaway, fun in the sun, exotic locations and not a care in the world. This year alone, some 11 million people are expected to take cruises. But even a luxury liner is not immune to the realities of the outside world, as we‘ve seen in the case of missing honeymooner George Smith.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KEVIN O‘CONNOR, U.S. ATTORNEY: We have reason to believe that there could have been foul play here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Cruise ship crime can be a nightmare for the victim. A complex series of regulations can lead that person in a legal no-man‘s-land. And because the vast majority of cruise ships are registered in countries like Panama and Liberia, authorities in those countries often end up having jurisdiction over the case. It‘s the same reason why many cruises are able to offer tax-free shopping and gambling.
Up-to-date statistics can be hard to come by, often because local authorities do not list if the crime happened on a ship. But the FBI says there have been at least 11 disappearances involving U.S. citizens in just the past five years, five since 2003.
And just a few years ago, FBI agents were reportedly investigating sexual assault claims on cruise ships about once every other week. Still, the majority of lines say they have a zero-tolerance policy. They claim they do background checks on almost all employees. And industry officials maintain that cruises are one of the safest ways to travel.
COSBY: And joining me now, we‘ve got former New York City homicide detective Bo Dietl and also former FBI special Greg Esslinger.
Bo, what do you know about this, in terms of FBI involvement? Do they have any jurisdiction in these type of cases?
BO DIETL, FORMER NEW YORK CITY HOMICIDE DETECTIVE: You know, the problem here is they really don‘t have the jurisdictions that people think. You know, it‘s like Pirates of the Caribbean. They have the date-rape drugs there on these boats. There‘s things that go on.
This case cries out. That photograph was taken of that blood. There‘s quarts of blood on that overhang there. There‘s blood in the cabin. There‘s evidence of a homicide that occurred on that boat.
As far as I‘m concerned right now, they should get one of these lawyers—and I don‘t understand why the wife is not speaking out. There should be $100 million wrongful death suit that was served upon Royal Caribbean right now.
And let‘s find out what the heck happened. Let‘s get the manifest of that boat, and let‘s start interviewing these three Russian people that were seen walking him into his room. His wife all of a sudden, within 24 hours, flew back to the United States. She hasn‘t spoken out against this.
She just got married. All of a sudden she flies back. She doesn‘t search a little for the man that she just married? There are instances that went on with this. There are witnesses there that something happened in that cabin. There was a fight that went on in there.
All the evidence in the world, for that one photograph—as far as I‘m concerned, I‘ve been at the scene of a lot of homicides. When a person goes out the window two floors down like that, that amount of blood doesn‘t cause, except for one thing. There had to be some kind arterial bleeding there. That means someone was killed...
COSBY: Something very fishy.
Greg, don‘t you agree with Bo? I mean, look, this is awfully suspicious. And I think he hit it on the head. The families aren‘t talking, which is very suspicious. And apparently, they weren‘t even providing samples for DNA to compare the blood.
GREG ESSLINGER, FORMER FBI SPECIAL AGENT: Absolutely. There‘s all kinds of problems going on here, Rita. One of the main things you‘ve got, as Bo I think started to go for, is you‘ve got a crime scene here.
There‘s nobody on board that ship who‘s capable and properly trained in securing a crime scene. And even if they were, you‘re talking about what could be days between when the actual crime occurred and when the authorities are able to get to that crime scene and properly process it.
And I think you‘ve got some real issues there, when you‘re relying on photos and witnesses days after the fact, trying to piece together what could be obviously a homicide.
DIETL: You know who investigates this, Rita? They have the people come in from Royal Caribbean. These are their risk assessment people. These are the people that work for them. They do a risk assessment.
So what are they going to find out? He drank too much, and he fell overboard. That‘s our finding. Another man overboard, American drunky go overboard, and now we have another man buried at sea.
COSBY: Well, and Bo, that‘s the answer that they want. And that‘s the answer, of course...
DIETL: And that‘s what happens out there, Rita. You‘ve got young girls that are drinking underage on these ships. No one checks identification. You have date-rape drugs on there. You‘ve got people working on these ships that are very undesirable people.
And people go on the ships to enjoy themselves when they are in limbo-land there, because there‘s no law there. You‘re on the open seas. It‘s like Pirates of the Caribbean. And I think the people of America should realize, you go on these Caribbean cruises, or you go around the world, Royal Caribbean, how royal is it? You‘re taking your life in your hand.
I would not let anybody in my family go on one of these cruises. If they want to enhance these cruises, they have to have a separate policing of that cruise to make sure kids are of age to drink, kids are of age to do anything there, to gamble. Let‘s keep some kind of police there. If something happens...
COSBY: Greg, what do you think? Don‘t you think they need an outside agency? And what do you think happened here, Greg?
ESSLINGER: Well, I think you‘ve got an obvious crime here. I don‘t think there‘s any two ways about it.
You‘ve got blood. You‘ve got a missing person. You‘ve got witnesses who say they saw or heard something suspicious. And your problem here, again, is you‘ve got a lot of finger-pointing here about who‘s supposed to be investigating.
And when the FBI finally does get to the scene, they‘re running around trying to figure out how they operate in a foreign jurisdiction with limited resources.
And I think Bo‘s exactly right. You got to be nuts to go on these cruises these days. And you‘ve got to be really careful. A lot of people travel out of the country. And particularly, you‘ve got newlyweds and maybe their first trip out of the country. And they have this false sense of security that they have constitutional rights, that the police are around the corner, you can dial 911, that there‘s a medical facility within reach that‘s going to be able to help you no matter what.
And it‘s all wrong. And it‘s all very dangerous.
DIETL: On the boat, Rita...
COSBY: We have five seconds. Five seconds.
DIETL: On the boat alone, Rita, there was an allegation of a rape that was there on that boat that same cruise. And all of a sudden it was covered up again.
There‘s things going on. They have to get to the bottom. This was a homicide. And this should be investigated. And the Mrs. there should be investigated. Put her a polygraph. Let‘s find out what she knows.
COSBY: All right, guys. That‘s going to have to be the last word.
Both of you, thank you very much. We appreciate it.
And coming up, a new case of a teacher giving some illegal sex education to one of her students. But up next, why she probably won‘t serve much time behind bars.
And later, the Tennessee jail breakout (INAUDIBLE) in court. We‘ve got the tape. And you‘ll hear it. That‘s coming up.
COSBY: Yet another female teacher is in trouble with the law for sleeping with her students. A married English teacher in Michigan is now accused of seducing a 15-year-old student and carrying on a month-long affair. She may face 15 years in prison.
And it‘s not even the only case making headlines this week. Another teacher, Pamela Turner, will serve nine years for seducing a 13-year-old.
Joining us now, defense attorney Jayne Weintraub, and also Florida sex crime prosecutor Stacey Honowitz.
Jayne, I got to start with you. This latest teacher could face 15 years. Is that the appropriate punishment?
JAYNE WEINTRAUB, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: No, I don‘t think so. I don‘t think that we just warehouse people to begin with. This is a first offender who obviously is having some problems and needs some therapeutic rehabilitation.
COSBY: So, Stacey, I mean, what do you do? Don‘t you need to throw the book and say this is not appropriate?
STACEY HONOWITZ, FL. SEX CRIMES PROSECUTOR: Absolutely. This isn‘t just somebody that‘s having problems. This is someone who‘s a pedophile. There‘s a difference when you‘re having some problems at home and when you‘re committing a crime and having sex with a minor.
And so, we need to put them in jail. It‘s not warehousing them. It‘s punishing them for committing a crime. It‘s an epidemic now, Rita. You see it every month after month, female predators. And that‘s exactly what they are. They need to be treated the same way we treat a male predator. Put them in jail.
COSBY: Jayne, isn‘t there sort of like, you know, a twofold process here? I mean, if it was a guy, you know, we‘d all be saying throw the book at them.
WEINTRAUB: Well, you know, Rita, maybe we should reevaluate that process. But the honest answer, although not politically correct to say so, is there has been a double standard. You know, boys‘ moms didn‘t report these crimes before. Prosecutors never filed charges before. The kids wore it like a badge of honor if they had sex with a teacher.
Now it‘s not popular. It‘s more popular for the prosecutors to get a notch in their belt and arrest another woman teacher. We don‘t know who seduced who here. We don‘t know what happened.
Look at Mary Letourneau. I mean, that was a true love affair. We don‘t know. Treat people as individuals.
COSBY: Is that what you‘re saying, they‘re doing it for attention now, the authorities, Jayne?
WEINTRAUB: I think that the prosecutors are doing it because it‘s the new wave in crime du jour, but I do think that it is a problem. And as you said the other night...
HONOWITZ: Absolutely not!
WEINTRAUB: We need to take a look and see what‘s wrong with them.
HONOWITZ: Listen, I‘m going to tell you something. You can‘t look at these cases and say, “We don‘t know who seduced who.” If this 12-year-old or 13-year-old stood up and begged this teacher to have sex with them, it doesn‘t make it OK. It‘s still pedophilia. It‘s a crime.
You don‘t look at it and say to yourself, “Let‘s evaluate the situation.” The situation is, you‘re a predator, you‘re having sex with an underage boy, you need to be punished just like everybody else.
And it‘s not the “crime of the day.” It just so happens that now it‘s coming more into the forefront. Maybe before people didn‘t want to report it. Boys are not embarrassed about reporting it. One thing that Jayne said is they wear it like a badge of honor. That‘s true.
And sometimes, that‘s why these female predators get better plea deals, because these boys don‘t want to come into court and testify against them. And that‘s why you‘re seeing a lesser sentence.
COSBY: Jayne, what is going on with these cases here? Because there has been a rash of these. And in the case of like Debra LaFave—we had Owen LaFave on last night—it looks like she‘s going to go for an insanity deal, sort of laying the groundwork at it.
Are these women insane? Were they abused when they were younger? What went wrong with these women to do something with a young boy like that?
WEINTRAUB: You know, Rita, you raise the exact questions that need to be answered. And unfortunately, under the law, the insanity plea is whether she knew right from wrong at the time she committed the offense and could appreciate the consequences of her actions.
The problem in most of these cases is, they do know that it‘s wrong, but they do it for impulsive, you know, acting out reasons. However, with LaFave, I think that the answer is in the tape recording. She sounds like a 10-year-old child herself, very child-like.
When the boy is taping her and he asked her, “Well, I don‘t want to get you pregnant.” Debra LaFave answers him, “Oh, don‘t be silly. Don‘t lie to your mother. I don‘t want to talk about that,” like a child.
COSBY: Yes, like a child.
COSBY: But Stacey, on the other hand, it‘s different than insane, Stacey...
WEINTRAUB: She might be mentally ill.
COSBY: Stacey, it‘s different from insane.
HONOWITZ: That‘s 100 percent right. That insanity plea can go out the door. She wasn‘t insane. She knew exactly what was going on, as evidenced by the tapes where she says, you know, “Don‘t tell anybody. I don‘t want anybody to know, or you‘re going to get in trouble.”
This woman knew exactly what she was doing was wrong. And she knew what the consequences were, that she could get in trouble. So basically...
WEINTRAUB: She still might have a mental...
HONOWITZ: Listen, obviously you have some kind of mental disorder if you want to have sex with a kid. You can‘t look at it and say you‘re normal.
COSBY: That‘s going to have to be the last word, ladies.
HONOWITZ: It‘s against the law.
COSBY: Thank you. To be continued, ladies. Thank you very much.
And coming up, everybody, we‘ve got a lot more ahead. A deadly grizzly bear attack caught on tape. And you won‘t believe why the people were so close to these bears. It‘s incredible.
And the shocking story of the man called the “AM Rapist.” We‘ll tell you how this creep methodically picked up his victims. We‘re going to have the latest on LIVE & DIRECT. That‘s coming up next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We‘ve been pleading with the public for the last couple of weeks to please make sure you lock your doors and windows before you go to bed at night.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Lock your doors, so what happened to a dozen women doesn‘t happen to you. Well, they all woke up to the same horrific sight, a man standing in their bedroom in their early morning hours preparing to rape them.
Here is the suspect. The sketch was just released a few hours ago. The suspect is called the “AM Rapist.” Phoenix police say he is methodic about choosing his victims.
Joining me now Judi Villa. She‘s a reporter for the “Arizona Republic.”
Judi, what do you know about this man? Give us a little description about him.
JUDI VILLA, REPORTER, “THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC”: We know that he‘s either a white or Hispanic male. He‘s about 20 to 35 years old. He has a pot belly, buzz-cut hair, and, in at least two of the attacks, he wore New Balance Model 604 sneakers.
COSBY: And that was identified by the victims themselves, correct?
VILLA: I believe it was shoeprint impressions left at the scenes.
COSBY: And how does he get into the homes?
VILLA: You know what? He‘s getting in through doors and windows. Police are advising women to make doubly sure that they have locks on their doors and their windows, that they, you know, put the little stick in the arcadia door to keep it from being forced open. Mostly, it‘s the doors and the windows and making sure they‘re locked.
COSBY: How did he get the name “AM Rapist”? We heard he would stand over them. What time of day does it seem that he actually intruded into the homes?
VILLA: It‘s the very early morning hours. The very first attack was around 10:00 at night. Most of the others have been between midnight and about 3:30 in the morning. And that‘s where his name comes from.
COSBY: How does he pick his victims?
VILLA: You know what? We‘re not really sure of yet. The police are trying to talk to all the victims and find out if they have anything in common, anywhere where their lives might have intersected, but they haven‘t really come out and said what it is that is drawing this man to these particular victims.
COSBY: Now, he was also identified because one of the neighbors, right? In one case saw, quote, “sort of peeping tom” in the area.
VILLA: There was a man at the end of June, I believe it was, who saw a peeping tom in the area, spoke briefly to him, provided a composite sketch. That person is considered a person of interest.
We‘ve also spoken to a woman at one of the apartment complexes where a rape did actually occur. And she also reported seeing a peeping tom at her complex several months before the rape actually happened. But it is believed that he is stalking his victims.
COSBY: Well, let‘s hope they get this guy. Judi, thank you very much.
And, of course, anyone at home, if you have any information on this so-called “AM Rapist” is asked to call the Phoenix police hotline. The number is 602-534-3041, or the Silent Witness hotline. It is 480-948-6377.
And also tonight, outbursts in the courtroom as a Tennessee fugitive couple fights with their own lawyers. George and Jennifer Hyatte appeared in a Columbus, Ohio, courtroom today. They‘re fighting extradition to Tennessee where the deadly jailbreak happened, where they could face the death penalty for allegedly killing the prison guard, Wayne Morgan.
But here‘s where things got heated. After agreeing to go back to Tennessee, George angrily changed his mind when his wife protested. You‘ve got to take a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do you wish to do? Do you want to speak to your counselor?
GEORGE HYATTE, TENNESSEE PRISON ESCAPEE: No. (INAUDIBLE)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You don‘t want to waive extradition?
HYATTE: Whatever my wife did, that‘s what I want to do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Well, police arrested the Hyattes, remember, on Wednesday night. We were there in Kingston when it happened, after finding them hiding out in a hotel hundreds of miles away in Columbus, Ohio.
And coming up, a deadly grizzly bear attack. It‘s all caught on tape. And the gruesome details about why these people got so close. It is incredible. You have to see this, next on LIVE & DIRECT.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I came out the lower level and started to try and work my way around the house, and there came mama bear.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Well, this week, a Colorado man woke up to find a bear cub in his house. Luckily, he survived the encounter with just a few scratches. But our next story does not have a happy ending.
Tim Treadwell spent his life surrounded by grizzly bears, filming his close-up encounters with the wild animals. But one day, his luck ran out when a bear attacked him and his girlfriend. The sounds from that terrible encounter were caught on tape, and it‘s so gruesome that only a handful of people have ever been able to listen to it.
Tim‘s story is the subject of a new amazing documentary called “Grizzly Man.” And we‘re joined now by Tim‘s close friend, Jewel Palovak, who is also an executive producer of the new film.
Jewel, before we get started with you, I just want to show a little clip, just to put a little bit of color of Tim. This is a man who loved these animals. And I want to play a little portion just to show some color and some flavor just from his heart. Let‘s take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIM TREADWELL, “GRIZZLY MAN”: Excuse me. Hey. Hey, it‘s OK. It‘s OK. It‘s OK. I didn‘t mean to get in your way. Wow, it‘s OK. You‘re the boss. Nice job. Wow. Nice job.
I kind of think he was over 10 feet high, don‘t you? He‘s a big bear. He‘s a big bear, a very big bear. Wow. Anyway, he‘s over here rub-a-dub-dubbing. He‘s a big bear!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Rub-a-dub-dubbing, it‘s a little too close for comfort, Jewel.
What do you say to people who say, “Gosh, this guy is crazy?”
JEWEL PALOVAK, FRIEND OF TIMOTHY TREADWELL: Well, I didn‘t think he was crazy. Just because you do dangerous things for a living doesn‘t make you crazy. And I think, when you see the movie, you‘ll realize that it‘s just like a photo album of Timothy Treadwell.
There‘s a lot of emotions. And if you think crazy is one of them, it‘s drawn from love of animals and dedication to preservation.
COSBY: Why did he love the animals so much? I mean, you could just tell there is really a kinship and he really just appreciates the beauty of these creatures.
PALOVAK: I think he was very troubled later—before he started doing this. He went up to Alaska and basically had an epiphany with a bear. He felt that the bear sort of let him live, so he decided to dedicate his life to the animals.
And I think just the sheer majesty of them, and the sheer fun that they have with each other, and the society they live in just made Timothy feel really at home.
COSBY: You can tell he really—he doesn‘t even seem scared. I‘d be shaking in my boots right now if the bear was this close to me.
You know, he talked about, in fact, that, you know, about, you know, almost predicting his own death, by saying that this would never happen with a bear, that I would always protect, I‘d fight for the bear. And it‘s really incredible, in light of what happened to him personally.
I want to show everybody just this particular clip.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TREADWELL: No one ever friggin‘ knew that there are times when my life is on the precipice of death and that these bears can bite. They can kill. And if I am weak, I go down.
I love them with all my heart. I will protect them. I will die for them, but I will not die at their claws and paws. I will fight. I will be strong. I will be one of them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: It‘s incredible, Jewel, to hear that, in light of his death, right?
PALOVAK: Well, it is, but it‘s a lot—it‘s easy to foreshadow something once you know the answer. Yes, it is. And I know he always knew that it could happen. But I think, by the end, he‘d forgotten. I know that he never expected a bear to kill him.
COSBY: I‘m sure he didn‘t. You know, there was also an audio tape, unfortunately, you know, he was filming. And there‘s an audio tape of his death. Have you listened to that? I understand that it‘s locked away somewhere.
PALOVAK: Absolutely not. I mean, I don‘t want the last memory of my best friend to have him be screaming for his life. And that‘s why in the documentary no one‘s brother, or mother, or sister, or anyone is ever going to go to a theater or anywhere else and hear that.
COSBY: Now, how do you want people to remember him? I mean, Tim was really a brave man and, obviously, loved these animals. What‘s sort of a living legacy for him?
PALOVAK: I think through Grizzly People, our nonprofit organization, we‘re striving to educate people worldwide about the plights of bears, about the problems of poaching in Alaska and the lower 48, about destruction of habitat.
And I think that Timothy Treadwell was a great educationist, a wonderful preservationist, a man that lived life to the fullest, and truly a great steward of our planet.
COSBY: Absolutely. And what a great legacy for him. Thank you, Jewel, for being here. And I hope everybody tunes in and watches it.
PALOVAK: Thanks, Rita.
COSBY: It‘s an incredible documentary. Thank you.
And just another horrible story, bind, torture, and kill, the signature of the BTK killer. He‘s just days away from being sentenced, and we‘re bringing it to you LIVE & DIRECT.
Dennis Rader readily admits that he murdered 10 people, methodically stalking them, even calling him his projects. His deadly games cost 10 people their lives and terrorized Wichita, Kansas, for years. And still, he has no remorse. “Dateline NBC” obtained this jailhouse interview where Rader gives the sick details.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DENNIS RADER, ADMITTED BTK KILLER: There was the library. I looked up their names, their address, and cross-referenced, and called them a couple times, drove by there whenever I could.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: And I‘m going to bring you all the details live when I go to Wichita as the Dennis Rader...
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST, “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY”: Thanks, Rita.
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