Guests: Marc Lefkowitz, David Tillotson, Fred Rustmann, Dr. Dale Nute, Vern Malloch, Elizabeth Moran, John Moran, Richard Codey, Robert Tarver, Maurice Lovermore, James Edstrom, Angela Rea, Jon Bon Jovi
RITA COSBY, HOST: Good evening. Thanks so much, Keith. And good evening, everybody.
All eyes right now are on Washington. At any point, we could find out if indictments will soon be handed down in the CIA leak scandal. Today, the prosecutor held a confidential meeting with the judge. What went on behind closed doors? And are indictments set to come down in just a matter of hours? We‘re going to have the very latest in a moment.
Also tonight, remember Ashley Smith? She‘s the woman who was held hostage by courthouse gunman Brian Nichols. Now, one of his friends is coming forward with a shocking allegation. He says Ashley Smith and the shooter knew each other before that night. That friend is going to join me live.
Plus, why was superstar rocker Jon Bon Jovi in a tough part of Philly today? I had a rare one-on-one interview with Jon Bon Jovi. That is coming up.
But first, Washington on edge big time tonight awaiting word of possible indictments. Indictments that could come down as early as tomorrow in the CIA leak investigation. There‘s plenty of suspense at the White House and around the nation about this case, which could crack at any moment and bring down some of the biggest players in our nation‘s capitol.
For the very latest, let‘s bring in MSNBC‘s David Shuster. David, first some new developments. Tell us what you have learned about the special prosecutor meeting with the judge today.
DAVID SHUSTER, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: Well Rita, we were told that the meeting took place around the noon hour, around lunchtime. It lasted 45 minutes. No indication what it was about, although the indication was it was not a courtesy call and that would leave open three possibilities.
First, and these are all possibilities that would require the judge‘s approval. First, extending the grand jury beyond Friday when it expires or getting the grand jury to meet on a day it‘s not scheduled. And the third one that would require the judge‘s approval is an indictment under seal.
That is actually considered the least likely because of procedural issues, but also because prosecutors are not supposed to get an indictment under seal except in the most extraordinary circumstances or when a defendant is in possibility of fleeing the country. So everyone is betting on one of the first two.
COSBY: Now David, what would be the first sign that something is up tomorrow that‘s going to come down?
SHUSTER: Well the first sign would be if the grand jury is in fact meeting tomorrow on a day when they‘re not supposed to. And along with that if Patrick Fitzgerald suddenly shows up at the courthouse around 9:00 in the morning, then there would be every indication that in fact something is up.
COSBY: And David, how many—I saw in a piece that you did earlier on “HARDBALL”—how many grand jurors have to be involved to approve an indictment for it to go forward?
SHUSTER: Well there are 23 grand jurors at the beginning that are—
23 members who are assigned to the grand jury. In order to be in a position to return an indictment, they have to have 16 present. And then of those 16, you need 12 to agree.
And remember, this vote happens with the prosecutors outside of the room. Once the prosecutors are done reading the indictment, explaining the relevant statutes to the grand jurors, they take a poll. If they get that 12 out of 16, then the prosecutors come back in and everybody goes downstairs to the magistrate‘s court where the indictment is actually read in part in front of the magistrate judge.
COSBY: Well we‘re going to be watching. I know you will be too.
David, thank you very much for being with us tonight.
And joining me now LIVE AND DIRECT from Washington our MSNBC‘s Joe Scarborough, the host of “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” and also Tucker Carlson, the host of “THE SITUATION”.
Joe, let me start with you. What‘s your sense? Are we going to get it down tomorrow do you think?
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST, “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY”: Well Washington is guessing either tomorrow or Friday. Obviously, though, there is a lot of different sort of scenarios right now. First scenario is obviously that it‘s “Scooter” Libby. If it‘s “Scooter” Libby, well the White House considers that “Scooter” Libby‘s problem because it‘s not going to hurt him politically.
If it‘s Karl Rove, obviously this is a guy that‘s really been Bush‘s brain trust since 1994 when he ran for governor in Texas. That will cause some operational problems that this White House just will not be able to respond to effectively. And third, if it goes beyond that—nobody is suggesting it will—but if somehow through this process the vice president gets even more involved, that‘ll obviously have political ramifications. It‘ll make every Republican in Washington concerned.
COSBY: Tucker, what‘s the sense you‘re getting from talking to people? Biting their fingernails tonight at the White House?
TUCKER CARLSON, HOST, “THE SITUATION”: Biting their fingernails. What‘s unclear to me at this point is what the Republican and the White House response is going to be. There have always been concerns among Republicans here in Washington about the White House communications team, packed with mediocrities, is the conventional wisdom, unable really to articulate a message or even to formulate a consistent message and really now there aren‘t many options open to the White House if indictments are handed down. What do they say in response?
They cannot attack the special prosecutor, Patrick Fitzgerald, because the president himself has done at least one and I think two occasions said positive things about him. Even today, you saw surrogates of the White House out on television including on our air, on MSNBC calling Patrick Fitzgerald an—quote—“an honorable man.” So that precludes any attacks on Patrick Fitzgerald. No matter what he does in the next couple of days, the White House is going to have a very hard time saying he‘s doing a wrong thing because they‘ve already called him a good man.
CARLSON: So what do they say? I don‘t know. I do agree with Joe. If it‘s “Scooter” Libby alone, I think they‘re going to say it‘s “Scooter” Libby‘s problem and cast him adrift, which is a sad thing frankly. And if it‘s Karl Rove, I don‘t know. They can say he did a bad thing, but then if he did a bad thing, why did they allow him to work at the White House for the last two years? It‘s a very, very tough situation...
COSBY: It is. It‘s a delicate balancing act. I want to show, Joe, this is some of the charges that some of the key aides could face. Intentional unmasking of an undercover CIA officer, perjury, also mishandling classified information, false statements, and obstruction of justice.
You know Joe, we‘ve sort of seen where some of the investigators are leading. They‘ve been questioning some of the neighbors of Valerie Plame. Do you think they‘re heading towards the leak? Do you think they‘re heading towards the cover up?
SCARBOROUGH: Well, I think in the end this may be a situation where the underlying crime is not charged and again, you end up looking at them going after these people for perjury possibly. I want to follow up with what Tucker had to say about the White House communications response to this. What a great contrast—I know Tucker will agree with me—with what the Clinton White House did to Kenneth Starr.
Here‘s a guy that yes and people in Washington knew Ken Starr. Everybody said he was an honorable man until James Carville got finished de-boning him night after night after night. And right now, there are a lot of conservatives on Capitol Hill that are a little bit concerned about the White House‘s lax response to say the least. They have nothing good to say about Joe Wilson, Republicans here, have very little to say about his wife.
They really don‘t think she was undercover. Most of the neighbors that they‘ve talked to claim that they knew that she was in the CIA. So, again, this may be a situation where this White House is adrift. I don‘t know if they‘re bored over there after winning their second time. But certainly second term malaise has set in. This doesn‘t help and the fact that everywhere I‘ve gone today I‘m hearing that Harriet Miers is going down. That‘s not going to help the situation anymore next week either.
COSBY: Not at all. But you know Joe, you used the word “adrift”. Could it also be that they‘re overwhelmed? That they just don‘t know where these tentacles are going right now.
SCARBOROUGH: I mean they‘ve been overwhelmed for quite sometime, haven‘t they? I mean they were overwhelmed with Katrina. They‘re overwhelmed now with the Supreme Court situation. They‘re overwhelmed with this case. I mean obviously, Karl Rove has been concerned about indictments. He‘s probably not been able to guide George Bush. But I think Tucker would probably agree with me. That just shows how important Karl Rove has been to this White House.
COSBY: And he‘s been...
COSBY: ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE) he‘s been so key to this president for decades as all three of us know well. Tucker, going to ask you the, you know, $54 million question. What do you think? Tomorrow? You think Friday? I know David Shuster is trying to read the tea leaves. Could there be an extension?
CARLSON: Well it sounds it now. I mean it‘s hard to believe—you know last night we were talking about -- in fact, we interviewed one of the Wilson‘s neighbors who had been interviewed by the FBI just the day before yesterday. And the implication that we drew from it was that the special prosecutor might be looking into how to form his indictment against Karl Rove.
In thinking about it and talking to people today that seems less likely. It seems more likely that the special prosecutor was gathering evidence for the trial. The indictments at this point having already been sketched out after two years. If the special prosecutor doesn‘t know who he‘s going to indict and for what, you know that says a lot. No one has called his man inept.
He probably knows exactly what he‘s going to do. I would imagine that we‘re going to know within 24 hours. I would imagine there may be some indication tonight. But on the other hand, we said that last night and we meant it and we were wrong. So you know there‘s a lot about this guy that doesn‘t seem to follow the normal timetable. He seems to pay no attention at all to what the press thinks, unfortunately, and so, you know, I hate to answer this but honestly, we don‘t know.
COSBY: Well we‘re going to be watching closely. I know all three of us. Guys, thank you very much. We appreciate you with being with us. Thank you, both.
SCARBOROUGH: Thanks Rita.
CARLSON: Thanks Rita.
COSBY: Thank you, guys.
And of course, as all of us anxiously await word from the grand jury, FBI agents, as you heard, hit Joe Wilson‘s neighborhood asking if the folks next door knew that Joe Wilson‘s wife, Valerie Plame was an undercover agent.
LIVE AND DIRECT tonight from Washington are two of Valerie Plame‘s neighbors, Marc Lefkowitz and also David Tillotson, who got that knock on the door.
Let me start with you, Marc. What did they say to you and were you really surprised?
MARC LEFKOWITZ, VALERIE PLAME‘S NEIGHBOR: I was surprised when they came to the door. They asked me if we knew that Valerie was undercover CIA and I answered, no. I said I found out when everybody else found out.
COSBY: And David, what kind of questions did they ask you?
DAVID TILLOTSON, VALERIE PLAME‘S NEIGHBOR: Same thing. They came to the door and introduced themselves. I invited them in and they asked first how well we knew the Plames—the Plames -- the Wilsons and Valerie, which we know. You know we‘re quite close to them now.
And they asked did we know and I said first the hint that we had was when we saw the article—the Novak piece, and which, you know my wife looked at it and said, it can‘t be. He‘s got it wrong.
COSBY: So you had no idea either that she was an undercover agent, is that right?
TILLOTSON: No, which is I guess consistent with the fact that she is a professional at what she does because we shouldn‘t have known.
COSBY: Now, did you—Marc, did you have any sense that your answers were so key to this investigation?
LEFKOWITZ: No, I mean, same as David. Nobody knew she was CIA. She was just a regular person in our neighborhood.
COSBY: You know and David, what was your reaction when you found out that you were answering questions in basically the most high-profile case in the country right now?
TILLOTSON: Well we‘ve been close to it for quite awhile because as I say, we‘re good friends with the Wilsons. We see them a lot and we talk about the case a lot. So, did it surprise me at all? In fact, I was on the phone with somebody and I opened the door. And I said, hey, I got to call you back. There are two FBI folks here and I knew they weren‘t there for me.
COSBY: Now David, what did you think she did? You didn‘t know that she was an undercover agent. Did you have any idea?
TILLOTSON: Oh, it was my understanding and my wife‘s understanding that she worked as—in the—an economics consultant for—you know for some company that had some international clients. And you know there was no reason to pursue it further. We dealt with them on other levels.
COSBY: And Marc, what did you think she did?
LEFKOWITZ: Same as David. She was a consultant. She traveled abroad and that‘s all we knew. And she was a mother of twins and she was like everybody else.
COSBY: Have you seen them recently at all, Marc?
LEFKOWITZ: We—you know, when we go outside, you see Valerie—we see Valerie in the yard with the kids and that‘s about it.
COSBY: You know, David, have you seen them recently? Has she said anything to you?
TILLOTSON: We see them regularly. We have two grandchildren roughly the age of their children, so we socialize with them and they come over. We have a lap pool. They come over. The kids swim and we talk and we visit a lot.
COSBY: But David, has she said anything different to you since it came out? Obviously...
TILLOTSON: No, absolutely not.
COSBY: Not at all. And Marc, anything different to you?
LEFKOWITZ: Nothing to me. You know we give her, her privacy. I mean she‘s under enough stress right now.
TILLOTSON: I think that‘s exactly it. I think the neighbors are very conscious of that.
COSBY: Well both of you, thank you very much. We appreciate you being here. Two neighbors who talked to the FBI and of course investigators are looking at this trying to determine where was she at and how was she at and certainly it sounds like—these two neighbors said she kept her cover very well.
Well let‘s get another man who knows Valerie Plame very well. On the phone right now is Fred Rustmann. He is Valerie Plame‘s former supervisor at the CIA. Let me start with you, Fred. How closely did you work with her?
FRED RUSTMANN, VALERIE PLAME‘S FMR. CIA SUPERVISOR (via phone): Well she worked for me when she first got through with her training.
COSBY: And how long was that?
RUSTMANN: She was with me about eight months or so.
COSBY: And what were her responsibilities when you were her supervisor?
RUSTMANN: She was a junior case officer. She had just finished her training. She was on the desk with me and she was training to go abroad. Actually on the job training at this point because her formal training was finished.
COSBY: Now we know she worked as an undercover agent. How heavy cover or light cover was she?
RUSTMANN: Well when she came on board with the agency and went through training and then was working with me she was under, you know, a good, official cover. And she spent like two or three years overseas under that good, pretty well back stopped official cover and then she came back to Washington and then she went under this light, nonofficial cover, not cover.
COSBY: Was it not cover at the end or where was the sense of sort of where it left off?
RUSTMANN: Well, she was overseas for approximately, I don‘t know, two or three years again under this light nonofficial cover. And then she came back to Washington. And at that...
COSBY: And how surprised were you when you found out that she was in the thick of this? Real quick.
RUSTMANN: That she was in the thick of this?
RUSTMANN: Very surprised.
COSBY: I bet as we all are. It‘s an interesting case Mr. Rustmann.
I‘m sure you‘re going to be following it as we will very, very closely.
Thank you for joining us on the phone, sir. We appreciate it.
And everybody, there‘s a lot more tonight on LIVE AND DIRECT. After the break, we‘re going to be going to Aruba where a new search is underway tonight in the Natalee Holloway investigation. You can see it‘s under water. We‘ll hear what divers found when they went there today. And that‘s not all. Take a look.
Still ahead, fright night. Halloween is just around the corner, but are your kids in danger of meeting a real monster? We‘ll tell you about a new crackdown to make sure sex offenders don‘t answer the door when kids come knocking.
Also, Ashley Smith inspired millions after being held hostage by accused courthouse shooter Brian Nichols. But did she really know him before that deadly rampage? Some stunning new information from one of the shooter‘s best friends who joins me live.
And Jon Bon Jovi...
COSBY: ... he‘s one of the biggest rock stars in the world.
COSBY: Now, he‘s giving back to his fans, helping those who are living on a prayer. He joins me for a special one-on-one interview. That‘s ahead LIVE AND DIRECT.
COSBY: Forensic divers are back on the case in Aruba today. They‘re beginning the latest round of underwater searches for missing Alabama teen Natalee Holloway. With some help from EquuSearch, divers today focus on the waters just off the lighthouse.
On the phone tonight from Aruba is Dr. Dale Nute. He‘s a forensic scientist with Florida State University. Dr. Nute, why the lighthouse?
DR. DALE NUTE, FORENSIC SCIENTIST (via phone): Well that‘s where EquuSearch got the information that the—maybe at least some evidence in that area, so...
COSBY: What kind of evidence, sir?
NUTE: Well, we‘re obviously looking for the body. We‘re—that‘s the main thing, but we‘re looking for any other evidence that we might be associated with it.
COSBY: Where does that evidence come from and how sort of solid of a tip is that?
NUTE: I don‘t really know. We are primarily subcontracted in effect by Texas EquuSearch and they do the intelligence work and we do the searching.
COSBY: Do you think though, sir, you know from your experience—here it is—she‘s been missing since May 30. That‘s a long time. Do you think you‘ll really find anything now?
NUTE: There are a number of scenarios in which it‘d be very likely to find something—enough evidence to make it well worthwhile.
COSBY: What did you see under water? Did you get any glimpse of anything?
NUTE: Yes. We saw the normal rocky bottom and some sandy bottom. It‘s—we had—we searched out two areas that had been identified as possible target areas because of particular shape of the rocks or whatever. And so we used the drop camera today to check those areas out.
COSBY: And how long do you think you‘re going to be there in Aruba?
NUTE: Well, (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and I are going to be here until Sunday and then depending on what we find or don‘t find, we may have someone else come down.
COSBY: Well very interesting Dr. Nute. I hope it is a good solid lead to get you out there to help get some good answers soon. Thank you very much. We wish you a lot of luck out there.
And now to Maine where police are looking for a young woman who disappeared without a trace. Twenty-four-year-old Lynn Moran was last seen on Columbus Day while visiting her family. She went out to a bar with some friends, but she never came home.
We‘re joined now by Lynn‘s sister Elizabeth and also her brother John. And also joining us on the phone is Lieutenant Vern Malloch of the Portland Police Department.
Lieutenant, I got to start with you because she was with a guy that night. It sounds like she spent a lot of time at this guy‘s apartment. But this guy isn‘t a suspect. He‘s the last person to have seen her alive.
LT. VERN MALLOCH, PORTLAND, MAINE POLICE DEPT. (via phone): Well he‘s not technically the last person to see her alive. We have spoken with some other friends and associates who saw her later in the evening. The man that you‘re referring to had just met Lynn that night.
She did spend some time visiting with him in his apartment and we know that when she left, she left without her shoes, without her purse and without her cell phone. But he has been very cooperative. He actually alerted the family the next day. He called them to return these items, said, I don‘t know how to get in touch with Lynn, but you know here they are. And you know that‘s what started their review of this whole incident and brought it to our attention.
COSBY: Now Lieutenant, why did she leave the apartment with those items? And we do—we know what friends she was going to visit.
MALLOCH: Well we don‘t know why she left those items behind. That‘s something we‘re trying to fill in the blanks on. We know that she had been drinking earlier in the night. We know witnesses that saw her later said she was intoxicated. That may account for some of this. And we also know from witnesses that she did make an effort to return to the apartment and reclaim these, but she wasn‘t able to.
COSBY: Let me bring in if I could Elizabeth, Lynn‘s sister.
Elizabeth, what leads do you believe need to be followed now?
ELIZABETH MORAN, LYNN MORAN‘S SISTER: We don‘t have any leads and that‘s why we‘re on television is because we want to find anything.
COSBY: Yes, I‘m sure it‘s heartbreaking. Her friends as we just heard from the lieutenant, you know, she saw some of the friends later that night. Have you talked to people who saw her? Have you talked also to this guy who spent some time with her?
E. MORAN: I have. The friend that she had lunch with is a good friend of mine. I did speak with the man that she was with later on and I don‘t know him very well. I don‘t know what to think. There‘s a lot of gaps missing and we‘re here—anybody knows anything that we don‘t know that would help us fill in the blanks.
COSBY: And John, what do you surmise may have happened to your sister? What are sort of the different scenarios that you‘re looking at as a family?
JOHN MORAN, LYNN MORAN‘S BROTHER: There‘s really an endless number of scenarios that are possible. You know we‘re just—we have no idea what happened. We know that the police have questioned everyone who Lynn spoke to that night who—that we‘re aware of that saw Lynn that night, and there are no clear leads, clear indications of what happened to Lynn that night.
All we know is that she disappeared and in that area of Portland, no one can just disappear without being seen by someone. So that is why we‘re here to ask whoever saw Lynn that night, whoever has information to please come forward, to contact the police, because we need to find our sister and somebody has to have information that will help us find her.
COSBY: You know now, John, we‘re also—you know obviously, as you heard from the lieutenant, she was quite intoxicated that night. How concerned are you, you know, that she was drinking, something may have happened because of that?
J. MORAN: Well, of course I‘m concerned, because it does sound like she was in a vulnerable state. But that‘s really not that unusual for someone to be, you know, out drinking at night and to do some dumb things. A lot of people do that and they usually don‘t disappear. So something else happened that night. There‘s a further answer that we‘re looking for. And, again, we just plead for who might have information to—that could help us find out what else happened that night to please come forward.
COSBY: You bet, and I know there‘s a $10,000 reward. Elizabeth, if anyone at home knows anything about what happened to your beautiful sister, what would you like to say real quick to anyone who is watching?
E. MORAN: If you know anything, please come forward, because we love her very much. We‘re a family of eight and we need her. So if you know anything, we will gladly give you $10,000. We just want her back.
COSBY: Well I do hope someone watching this has some clues. Please, of course, call the police department. You saw the number there for the Portland Police Department and make her come back with this beautiful family of eight. Thank you so much all of you, very much.
(UNINTELLIGIBLE) I hope you get good answers soon.
And still ahead, everybody, will sex offenders be causing a scare in your neighborhood this Halloween? We‘ll tell you about a controversial crackdown to keep kids safe.
Plus, caught on tape, a criminal commits a crime so outrageous you won‘t believe it when you see it. It‘s all on tape. It is amazing. That all ahead on LIVE AND DIRECT.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our officers are going to be doing routine checks of curfews of those offenders, as well as we‘ll have other officers who aren‘t necessarily a part of the sex offender management unit assisting them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSBY: Well, the state of New Jersey wants to keep your kids safe from sex offenders on Halloween night. Registered sex offenders around the Garden State got this letter that you see here in their mailboxes. The message, stay home Halloween night and stay away from children or face the consequences.
LIVE AND DIRECT right here at MSNBC World Headquarters is New Jersey acting Governor Richard Codey. Governor, thank you for being here. We appreciate it.
ACTING GOV. RICHARD CODEY ®, NEW JERSEY: My pleasure, Rita.
COSBY: Why did you decide this Halloween night?
CODEY: Well because we wanted to be proactive. We wanted to be safe and not sorry. So we have over 2,000 sex offenders. We have parole for life based on Megan‘s Law. And all of those have received notification that on Halloween night, you‘re to be home by 7:00 at night. If you work at night, you are to go directly from your place of employment to your home.
You will not be allowed to answer your door. Even if you have children, you cannot take them out with you and trick-or-treat. You will stay home and not answer your door. No Halloween parties. Nothing until the next day.
COSBY: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) critical now. I mean there has been so many cases, unfortunately, of sex offenders. Is it something triggered it that just said look, we finally have to take some action?
CODEY: No, but we‘ve been proactive. We recently enacted into law a GSP tracking system. So now, in the state of New Jersey, if you‘re a high-level sexual offender and convicted, we will, for the rest of your life, have an ankle bracelet around you and we will track your whereabouts.
COSBY: How many of these thousand sit in that category of high-level?
CODEY: The high-level? Oh, roughly about 800 or so.
COSBY: What are you going to do about the other ones? I mean, how do we know that these guys—even though obviously well-intentioned to get to these laws—how do you know that they‘re actually going to say, “OK, I‘m going to stay in. I‘m not going to give out candy.” How can you track that?
CODEY: We have roughly about 400 law enforcement people that night who will be doing random checks on sex offenders, knocking on their doors outside their homes, to make sure they are, in fact, obeying the law. If they‘re caught not obeying the law, it‘s up to almost two years in jail because they weren‘t home that night or they did, in fact, go out.
COSBY: What do you say to the folks, as we are looking at the list right there, you know, the 7:00 p.m. curfew and all the other things? These are folks who have already registered. What do you stay to folks who say, “Look, we have already been ostracized enough. We‘re already on this registry.” Isn‘t this going too far?
CODEY: Well, Their rights against the rights of the children to be safe, I fall on the children‘s side and say we have to do this. That‘s why we enacted Megan‘s Law. That‘s why we have a tracking system for the most serious sex offenders in the state of New Jersey.
We are going to be proactive. It‘s the right thing to do.
COSBY: Is this going to be an annual thing? Is this the start of something we‘re going to see every year?
CODEY: It‘s an annual thing. And then we also want to be able to do it for those offenders who were convicted before Megan‘s Law. Right now, we can‘t enforce this on them, because they‘re not on lifetime parole right now.
But in the future, we want them to do this for all sexual offenders in the state of New Jersey as an annual thing.
COSBY: What‘s the reaction, first of all, you‘re getting from parents? And have you gotten any angry letters from sex offenders?
CODEY: No, not at all. It‘s been very supportive. And there‘s been no opposition to it whatsoever.
COSBY: What do you see as sort of the hardest thing in this, in this battle of sex offenders? It is such a tough issue to conquer.
CODEY: It is. But the more proactive things we do, the more we let these sexual predators know, “We know where you are. We know what you‘re doing. Our eyes are on you.” And they should be, and they always will. We‘ll prevent many, many cases of sexual assault, I think.
COSBY: Is the also issue—and we‘ve done so many stories on sex offenders, unfortunately—recidivism. Is there—OK, we have to avoid this temptation? Do you think that this will really work, or is this at one step in the right direction?
CODEY: In many, many cases, this will work. We know it‘s very, very hard to turn back with these individuals from a life of being sexual predators. There‘s no question about it.
But the more we stay on top of them, the more we monitor their activities, the more our children are safe in the state of New Jersey. And I think more states will adopt these proactive measures like we have in the state of New Jersey.
COSBY: Governor Codey, thank you very much. We appreciate you being here.
CODEY: Thank you for having me, Rita.
COSBY: Thank you very much. We appreciate it.
And, of course, while the goal is to keep kids safe on Halloween, could these restrictions be a little too much? LIVE & DIRECT tonight is criminal defense attorney Robert Tarver. He has both prosecuted and also defended sex offenders.
Robert, what‘s your reaction to what the governor said?
ROBERT TARVER, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, one of the first things that comes to mind—I hear the governor saying that there‘s a bigger end-game here. They want to do all sex offenders, not just those under Megan‘s Law.
The fact of the matter is, you really do have to ask yourself, where is this going? I mean, what do we do, Christmas next? There is no celebration of Christmas for sex offenders?
I know. Why don‘t we just say they can‘t buy candy anymore, or they can‘t buy toys or anything else that‘s possible luring. Now, you say, “Wow, that‘s silly, Robert Tarver.”
But the bottom line is, if you can do it for Halloween, you can do it for every other implement. And somebody who is a reasonable person who has the presence of mind to say that there‘s trouble here has to sit back and say, “We have a problem, and we need to approach this intelligently.”
COSBY: But, Robert, isn‘t there a temptation with kids, particularly on Halloween? There‘s this activity. You‘re handing out candy. It‘s much more sort of person-to-person than any of these other holidays. And isn‘t it too much of a temptation for these guys?
TARVER: The fact of the matter is, Rita, no one will sit here and say that the bulk of sex offenders are behind bars or are on supervision. They‘re the people that you don‘t even know about at this juncture.
They‘re the ones that you have to worry about.
But you know what? There‘s something else here. What about good, old-fashioned personal responsibility?
I‘m a parent of six. Every time my children went out, I took them out for Halloween. If this governor wants to do something that‘s proper, perhaps what he should be considering is saying, “No children should be going out alone unsupervised without a parent.”
COSBY: You know, Governor, is it the parent‘s responsibility though?
I mean, is that fair to say?
CODEY: Absolutely. We‘ve said to the parents, “Always go with your children. Don‘t let them go out alone.” That‘s wrong, without question.
But I would say to Robert, Robert, were you against Megan‘s Law, having these sex offenders registered?
TARVER: I certainly was against it.
CODEY: You were against it, right?
TARVER: Let me tell you what I was against. I was against supervision for life. Because I think, at some juncture, you have to say to people that you have served your time, that there is redemption of sorts. Unless they...
CODEY: You may have served your time, but that doesn‘t mean that you have been cured and that you‘re not still a sexual offender.
TARVER: Governor, I hope you‘re not suggesting that every sex offender under this law is mentally ill or mentally sick. You know that this law also covers people, for example, who were 20 years old and touched a 16-year-old on the buttocks. That‘s who‘s covered also under this Megan‘s Law.
CODEY: I don‘t think for one night this is such a big deal, to be honest with you.
TARVER: Well, you‘re starting it with one night.
CODEY: We‘re saving children, maybe.
TARVER: But you‘ve already expressed...
CODEY: We are. Absolutely...
TARVER: ... that you want this to go to a larger scope.
CODEY: ... and home that night.
TARVER: Governor, what‘s the difference between Halloween and Christmas? What‘s the difference between saying that the...
CODEY: Nobody walks their neighborhood...
CODEY: Christmas night, sir, knocking on doors of strangers. That doesn‘t happen, sir.
TARVER: But people walk the malls, and they are out, and they are getting those toys, they are getting that candy, they are getting those implements.
COSBY: Robert, let me interrupt you, Robert. Because how did you keep these guys in check? I mean, as someone who‘s—I‘ve covered a lot of these stories. There‘s an incredibly high rate of recidivism.
I mean, a lot of these cases—I mean, let‘s talk about the Jessica Lunsford case. In the case of that guy, he said, “I can‘t be cured.”
TARVER: Rita, there are those people like that.
COSBY: What do you do with those?
TARVER: There are those people like, but you know what?
COSBY: But don‘t you agree—but, Robert, do you agree...
TARVER: The rate of recidivism...
COSBY: ... that there needs to be some middle ground, at least, Robert, that they have to accept responsibility?
TARVER: I do. And I think that Megan‘s Law in its current form, though a little bit broad, is not necessarily a bad thing. But I think that, once you go down this road, it‘s a slippery slope. Where do you stop?
And I don‘t think anyone could tell us what the rationale line is between Halloween and an Easter egg hunt or any other holiday where children celebrate.
COSBY: All right. Hang on one a second. Let me get the governor to kind of give you the last word.
CODEY: OK. I wouldn‘t want a sex offender at an Easter egg hunt. I can assure you of that, or in a playground, or near a school.
COSBY: I think a lot of people would agree with that. Thank you very much.
TARVER: Guess what, Governor? They‘re there already.
COSBY: Yes, unfortunately. And you should be saying the same thing.
Thank you, Robert. We appreciate it very much. I know everyone has the best of intentions. Thank you.
Well, some new shocking details about accused courthouse shooter Brian Nichols. Nichols set off a manhunt near Atlanta after a deadly courthouse rampage that left four people dead.
But he turned himself in peacefully after spending hours holding a woman hostage. That young woman is Ashley Smith who claims she never met Nichols before that day. But now, some new stunning revelation that maybe that wasn‘t their first encounter.
Joining us now is Maurice Lovemore. He‘s a close friend of the accused shooter.
Maurice, I think this is incredible. You met recently with Brian, right? You‘ve known him for a long time.
MAURICE LOVEMORE, BRIAN NICHOLS‘ FRIEND: That is correct.
COSBY: And what did he tell you about when he met Ashley Smith for the first time?
LOVEMORE: Well, Brian never did go into specifics of when he did meet Ashley Smith for the first time. He just basically spoke of the incident that night.
COSBY: But did he say that they had a relationship before, some sort of contact before?
LOVEMORE: Well, according to Brian, that is what he did tell me, yes, it is.
COSBY: And what was the nature of their relationship? Do you know?
LOVEMORE: I‘m not going to speak on specifics of that right now.
COSBY: But did you get the impression there was a romantic relationship or—I know that, also, you know, she‘s a self-admittedly—said that there was drugs in her past. Was it drug-related? Was it romantic? Was it social?
LOVEMORE: You know, I don‘t know. Brian was a young and intelligent man who had a lot of friends, and a lot of people loved Brian. I do not know their relationship at this moment.
COSBY: But he did tell you that they had some relationship before?
LOVEMORE: Some sort, yes.
COSBY: OK. It‘s sort of a face-to-face, do we know to what degree?
LOVEMORE: No, we don‘t know at this time to what degree. He didn‘t go into specifics. And I didn‘t ask him, because what I was saying was like, “Brian, I don‘t even think I really want to know.”
COSBY: Now, Ashley Smith, you know, has said that she offered Brian drugs that night, methamphetamine. Did he allude to you or say to you directly that she also did drugs herself?
LOVEMORE: According to Brian, he did say there was drug activity on her part that night, yes.
COSBY: That they both did drugs?
LOVEMORE: That is correct.
COSBY: Now, you know, obviously, she‘s denied this. Her book just came out. I want to show some quotes, Maurice.
Because she says, you know, on this issue, this first—of meetings Nichols before. She said, “My first encounter with Brian Nichols was when he pulled a gun on me and forced me into my apartment.”
And There‘s another quote also that she says further—she says this about the drugs—“I not only refused to do drugs with Brian Nichols that night, but, more importantly, I have no desire to ever do drugs again.”
But you‘re saying that, according to Brian, that they did have some relationship beforehand and that they both did drugs that night, is that correct?
LOVEMORE: That is what I was told. I don‘t know that to be false or true, but that was according to Mr. Nichols, yes.
COSBY: Did he ever tell you, also, what triggered it that night, that day, Maurice, you know, that horrible day? What set him off?
LOVEMORE: Well, Brian felt that he was being treated unfairly and that he was getting a raw deal out of the case that he had here in Atlanta.
COSBY: Is he worried about his fate now?
LOVEMORE: Oh, yes. Brian is very remorseful. Brian has always been a very peaceful man, a very humorous man, a very intelligent young guy, and a true friend ever since I‘ve known him. This Brian that happened on that fateful day, I don‘t know who he was and I would have never saw that coming.
COSBY: Maurice, thank you very much for being here. We appreciate you sharing your thoughts. Thank you very much.
LOVEMORE: Yes, ma‘am. Thank you.
COSBY: And still ahead, the strip club scandal. The CEO gets in trouble for a wild night. But did he do anything wrong? Reaction from an exotic dancer and a frequent visitor, coming up.
Plus, a crime so gross and so outrageous, well, you‘re just going to have to stick around and find out what this man did, and it was all caught on tape. It is coming up.
COSBY: Well, who knew that a trip to a New York strip club can land a high-powered CEO on unpaid leave? Robert McCormick says he only spent $20,000 that night. But American Express claims that there was a whopping $241,000.
As the two sides fight it out in a lawsuit, we wanted to know how easy it is to drop a cool $241,000 at your favorite strip joint. LIVE & DIRECT tonight is celebrity photographer James Edstrom, who has photographed some of the best, and, in Las Vegas, exotic dancer Angela Rea.
James, let me start with you, because you also brought some pictures of Scores.
JAMES EDSTROM, CELEBRITY PHOTOGRAPHER: Of Scores, yes.
COSBY: Yes, this is the place. First of all, what is it like inside this place?
EDSTROM: Scores is a fabulous place. I mean, the excitement in this club is unbelievable. The music, the dancers, the food, it all goes together to create an exciting evening.
COSBY: And what is the allure, as we‘re looking at just some video here? What is the allure of this place?
EDSTROM: Well, you know, a lot of Wall Street types go to this place. And they love to show off, and they love to spend a lot of money. So it‘s not uncommon for someone to spend $20,000 or $30,000 in just a couple of hours, one, two, three.
COSBY: Well, now, these girls, they‘re not attached to the lawsuit. These are some of the dancers, though, that are at Scores. You say that is isn‘t unusual to make that kind of cash?
EDSTROM: It‘s not unusual at all. People go there and they spend money. What‘s more unusual is that corporate America allows this to happen, that these guys get a corporate credit card, they go into these clubs, and they charge it. And who pays? The stockholders.
COSBY: Yes, and they‘re not happy today.
EDSTROM: They‘re not happy today.
COSBY: Even though he said it was for personal use. Still, they‘re not happy.
Angela Rea, let me bring in you. You know, have you met a lot of big spenders in your day?
ANGELA REA, LAS VEGAS EXOTIC DANCER: I have, but not as big as this gentleman.
COSBY: What‘s the most that you have ever seen or heard about being paid in one of the clubs that you worked?
REA: Well, it is not uncommon for them to drop, you know, like he said, you know, large amounts. In my club, I have witnessed men dropping anywhere from $5,000, to $10,000 or $15,000, based on, you know, if they have bachelor parties, you know? But I‘ve never seen a quarter million dollars. That‘s just unbelievable to me.
COSBY: It is unbelievable. You know, are there checks at your place? Because one of the things that Scores was saying is they do fingerprints, they do a whole bunch of things, you know, if somebody‘s going over, say, $10,000.
Are there checks and balances in place where you work?
REA: Yes, there are. And the gentleman knows how much he will be spending. He is pre-told. And we do, you know, run his credit card, his I.D. You know, we follow all the procedures. And he knows exactly what he‘s going to spend.
And, you know, based what, you know, he orders for that evening, you know, that there will be no discrepancy with the bill, with my club so, you know..
COSBY: Now, James, have you ever been with people who have disputed the bill? And what kind of people go to places like Scores?
EDSTROM: I‘ve never seen anybody dispute a bill at Scores.
EDSTROM: OK. But I have seen people drop $10,000 to $20,000 at a pop, OK? And Scores...
COSBY: And what kind of folks are these? Are these executives, celebs?
EDSTROM: These are all kinds of different people, executives in nice, three-piece suits, and they want entertainment, and they want a lot of fun. So this is what they do. They go there with the corporate credit card, and they charge it. And who ends up paying? The consumer ends up paying in the long run.
COSBY: Angela, what kinds of folks go to your place?
REA: Actually, I do work for one of the world‘s largest gentlemen‘s club. And we actually attract a very high clientele, very prestigious businessmen, you know, so...
COSBY: All right. Well, thank you both very much for giving us some insight into that world. We appreciate it.
REA: No problem.
COSBY: And this next story is not for the squeamish. It‘s just plain gross. Just a short time ago, a Dallas jury convicted this taxi cab driver of tampering with food.
You see him in this video. How is he tampering with food? To tell us all about it is David Quinlan with our NBC affiliate, KXAS in Dallas.
DAVID QUINLAN, KXAS-TV REPORTER (voice-over): July 24, 2005, Behrouz Nahidmobarekeh is seen walking into this fiesta grocery store. He‘s the one wearing lopsided shorts. Prosecutors say Behrouz then pulls something out of his pants and does the unthinkable.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He takes his own fecal matter and spreads it to the wind over the food going to the public.
QUINLAN: Behrouz is charged with tampering with consumer products. Prosecutors say he took his own feces, dried it, grounded it up, and then tossed it over fiesta food products.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It‘s just so disgusting. And you know what?
People get hurt.
CLARK BIRDSALL, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You‘ve got to acquit him. And if the state really wants to go after him still, let them charge him with damaging the rolls and the pastries.
QUINLAN: Defense Attorney Clark Birdsall says there‘s no way to prove that what Behrouz did would have ever hurt anyone.
BIRDSALL: It‘s OK to be angry at the defendant. I am. But you‘ve got to follow the law.
BEHROUZ NAHIDMOBAREKEH, SPRINKLED FECES ON FOOD: I took some of my own feces...
QUINLAN: Behrouz admitted tossing his own feces. He says he was upset with the way the store had treated him earlier and that he meant it as a joke.
COSBY: And that man could now face punishment of up to 20 years in prison.
And coming up on LIVE & DIRECT, Jon Bon Jovi picking up a hammer instead of a guitar. I spoke one-on-one with the rock star as he gives back to his fans.
COSBY: Well, he is a rocker and a philanthropist all in one. For now, Jon Bon Jovi has traded in his guitar for a hammer. His foundation has teamed up with Habitat for Humanity to build homes for four north Philadelphia families.
I had a chance to sit down with him this morning. And he told me what it was like to meet with some of these families firsthand who are going to be living in the new homes.
JON BON JOVI, MUSICIAN: When you do something like this and they say, “Listen, I work hard. I just have a hard time making ends meet. I‘ve lost my job recently. I never dreamt I‘d have a home.” And you think that this happens, not in just areas of devastation, where we‘ve tried to make a big difference down after Katrina, for instance, but in your own back yard.
COSBY: You know, I was down there in New Orleans. I saw the devastation. When you see these pictures, do you ever feel, no matter what I give, it‘s never enough?
BON JOVI: No. I think that whatever I can give and somebody else can give, one one-hundredth or a thousandth of that, every little bit helps make a difference.
And you can‘t ever say, “Oh, I can‘t make a difference.” A lemonade sale by little Johnny on the corner will make a difference. It‘ll make a different because, when little Johnny grows up, it will be in the back of his mind to be a part of the community, to do something for his neighbors.
And it‘s not a question of race divided, as has been proposed by some people. It‘s class division. And we‘re creating a community of haves and have-nots, and we have to help each other.
COSBY: You were rehearsing at a New Jersey military base...
BON JOVI: Yes.
COSBY: ... which I thought was really cool. What did the men and women say to you? And I say this because, sadly, yesterday, we reached a sad milestone, 2,000 U.S. soldiers dead.
BON JOVI: Well, they were quite pleased that we were there, you know, to do our rehearsals and, in turn, play for them. But in doing so, I thanked them for the service to their country, because, again, as I‘ve traveled the world, I‘m putting myself into a defensive mode oftentimes with the foreign press.
You know, “What about your country?” OK, now I have to be a spokesman for my country. And I said, “For all its fallibilities, it‘s the greatest country in the world, and there are wonderful people.” And the military are there to do a job. And I just thank them for doing that job that, you know, that they volunteered to be a part of.
COSBY: What are your thoughts about what‘s happening in Iraq, as we do reach the milestone? It‘s a hard number.
BON JOVI: It‘s a very sad day. It‘s a sad day for the families of those 2,000 people. It‘s a sad day for all the lives of the Iraqis who have been lost.
War is a no-win situation. And I don‘t think anybody can think that it‘s a win-win situation. It‘s just got to be very hard on the mothers of those fallen soldiers.
COSBY: Tell us about your new song, part of your new album, “Who Says You Can‘t Go Home.” Perfect name.
BON JOVI: It‘s true. You know, it‘s funny, but wherever I go in the world, people will say to me, “You still live in Jersey?” And they make that funny kind of face. I go, “Yes, I still live in Jersey.”
COSBY: About an hour from here.
BON JOVI: Yes, I grew up an hour from here. And I‘ve had a long-standing relationship with the community. So the idea was that a song about going back to your neighborhood, which is what we do, you know? We‘re just a blue-collar rock and roll band from New Jersey.
And the idea of building homes and having the money, the funds, to build these homes was a no-brainer for me.
COSBY: A lot of kudos to Jon Bon Jovi. The music video for his new single, “Who Says You Can‘t Go Home,” will highlight this amazing building project.
And up next, a basketball star comes out of the closet. Find out.
COSBY: Women‘s basketball superstar Sheryl Swoopes is revealing a huge secret. She‘s gay. And Swoopes, who is a divorced mother of an eight-year-old, is causing even more controversy by saying that she was not born gay.
Sheryl is going to be joining me live tomorrow night for her first primetime interview, so I hope you‘ll tune in.
And that does it for me on LIVE & DIRECT tonight, everybody. I‘m Rita Cosby. “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” starts right now—Joe?
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST: Hey, thanks so much, Rita. Greatly appreciate it.
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