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Interviews with John McCain, Kelly Marino

Aired December 9, 2002 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, Senator John McCain. Will there be war with Iraq? His thoughts on whether we should take a run at Saddam Hussein.
And then, exclusive, teenage boys in prison for killing their father. Tonight, their mother speaks out about the trial that shocked America. Derek and Alex King's mother, Kelly Marino, will join us. They're all next on LARRY KING LIVE.

We start with the very familiar figure around these parts. Senator John McCain, member of the Armed Services Committee, the decorated Vietnam veteran, former P.O.W., Republican of Arizona who attempted to be his party's candidate for the presidency.

All right, what do you make of the news today, the arms declaration submitted to the U.N.?

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: Well, I haven't read it, Larry. And as you say, it's 12,000 pages, which people are going to take some time to go through. But at first inspection, the Iraqis have basically denied what is reality. And they deny that they possess weapons of mass destruction. And they admitted in the past they had these weapons. And yet the spokesperson for Saddam Hussein says they have no documentation of their destruction.

As Mr. Blix, the inspector, said, mustard gas isn't marmalade and getting rid of it is something that obviously there would be some documentation to. My conclusion is they're probably in, quote, "material breach," unquote, of the United Nations Security Council resolution.

KING: Were you surprised that that Security Council agreed to give its five permanent members unedited copies of the resolution -- of the declaration, rather?

MCCAIN: I think the reason why they did is because those five nations all probably have that technology and capability. I think there was a legitimate concern about giving it to other members of the United Nations Security Council. And, you know, I think we ought to talk straight here, and that is that members of the Security Council, some are more equal than others, and the permanent members obviously -- are -- influences is transcendent here.

KING: When there were reports years ago about nuclear weaponry in Cuba, Adlai Stevenson was able at the U.N. to show the pictures. Can the United States show the proof?

MCCAIN: I think they can. Secretary Rumsfeld not too long ago said every nation with an intelligence capability knows that Iraq has these weapons. And I think we can do that without betraying sources of information, technology, et cetera.

I think there are other nations' intelligence capabilities such as the British and perhaps even the French and Germans as well that have -- that have this evidence.

KING: Now, the Democrats or some Democrats are urging the Bush administration to prove its claim by releasing the intelligence showing what they have. The Bush team says it has proof but it's not going to release it because it compromises sources. Where do you stand?

MCCAIN: I think we can disclose this information to people who need to know this information.

I also want to point out that the burden of proof is not on the Bush administration. The burden of proof is on the Iraqis, who had this -- the massive amounts of capability, anthrax, chemical weapons, biological weapons, munitions to deliver them. I mean, they had an enormous inventory, according to the United Nations' last inspection. So it seems to me the burden of proof is not so much on the Bush administration and the United States of America as it is on Saddam Hussein, who clearly had these weapons and has failed to account for them.

Now, should -- and I think that's an important thing to establish here, where the burden of proof is. But having said that, then, yes, I think we could share some intelligence information we have without compromising sources, et cetera.

KING: If you're right, Senator, and they have all you say they have, and forces go in and they use this weaponry against those forces, are you therefore looking at a holocaust here?

MCCAIN: I think the wild card here in a conflict with Iraq is, and my recurring nightmare is that Saddam Hussein with one of these weapons, chemical or biological, I don't think it's nuclear yet, on a SCUD missile and fires it at Israel. Now, we're trying to take every precaution. The Arrow missile is a very effective one; we'll move Patriot missiles in, but it's still something that worries me more than anything else about a conflict with Iraq. It should worry all of us.

But having said that, if we don't act, Larry, to remove what is clearly a present -- what is a clear and present danger, then what would we be facing four or five or six years from now? And that would be, I think, Saddam Hussein with enhanced capability and the danger of being greater.

KING: You think they're going to be able to do it, do it successfully at minimum loss? MCCAIN: Yes. But, you know, I worry about the scenario that I told you about before. But Saddam Hussein's military is weak. There are very few Iraqi soldiers outside of the Republican Guard that want to die for Saddam Hussein. His economy has been driven down badly. His people are being mistreated. We've heard the stories.

You know, I thought that Claire Shipman (ph) interview with his ex-mistress, which was validated by most experts as to what kind of person we're dealing with here, you know, anybody that likes to sit around in the evening and watch torture films is, you know, not -- not your -- not a guy who's regularly on LARRY KING LIVE.

KING: What's the timing, do you think?

MCCAIN: You know, it's hard for me to guess, because I have no inside information. But from talking with various military experts -- and I want to emphasize I have no information about the planning that's going on in the Pentagon -- but I would just guess off the top of my head, January or February.

KING: How big a difference now to 11 years ago? We have much improved equipment now, right?

MCCAIN: We're much improved. They have never restored their military capability that they had at that time. Our technology, particularly air-to-ground technology is vastly improved. I don't think you're going to have to see the scale of numbers of troops that we saw, nor the length of the buildup, obviously, that we had back in 1991.

But I also believe, and I want to emphasize over and over, we all know, but it requires repeating, whenever young Americans are going into harm's way, it has to be the last resort. And the president of the United States is going to have to tell the American people in no uncertain terms that this is -- we're sending your young men and women as a last resort, and that's why I am doing it. And there is a body of American public opinion that's very skeptical about that. So those of us who view him as a clear and present danger, as I do, have got to make a strong case to the American people.

KING: We'll take a break and spend some more moments with Senator McCain, talk to him about some other things current in the news. And then we'll meet Kelly Marino, the mother of Alex, 13, and Derek, 14, the King brothers who pled guilty to killing their father. Her attorney, Jayne Weintraub, will also be with us.

Back with Senator McCain after this.


KOFI ANNAN, U.N. SECRETARY-GENERAL: I have maintained that war is not inevitable, and it is up to President Saddam Hussein to disarm, to cooperate fully with the inspectors, and honor all his obligations to the United Nations. If that were to be done, I see no reason for war.




AL GORE, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We should not have a U.S. war in Iraq unilaterally to try to change their government. I do think that it's in our interest for their government to be changed. I think the world would be a better place when Saddam Hussein is gone.

But for the United States of America to invade another country to try to change their government, in these circumstances, I think would be a mistake.


KING: Senator McCain -- by the way, John McCain has a terrific new book out, "Worth the Fighting For." It's the sequel to his previous best-seller. What do you make of what Al Gore just said?

MCCAIN: Well, I would respectfully ask the former vice president why he supported a resolution four years ago that called for regime change which was passed by the Congress and supported by president Clinton and then-Vice President Gore?

Look, the point here is that Saddam Hussein is in material breach of the United Nations Security Council resolution. And that was a process that we went through which I believe was appropriate to go to the United Nations Security Council, just as it was appropriate to go to the United States Congress for a resolution of support.

So I believe the evidence is there, the situation is clear and Saddam Hussein can still, can still avoid military action if he will come clean and reveal these laboratories and where they are and what they've been doing.

And let me just add one final thing. Iraq is the size of the state of California. The only way these inspectors will be effective if is they have information, provided by defectors as was the case in the past where we're able to uncover so much of this stuff, or by the -- Saddam Hussein and his people coming clean.

You're not going to be able to run around a country the size of California and really find anything unless you have information.

KING: Some other bases. Joint Congressional Committee is investigating the failures of September 11, are recommending some cabinet level spy chief to oversee all the 14 U.S. intelligence agencies. You support that?

MCCAIN: I agree. I agree that if not exactly that we've got to have some kind of reorganization because the line between domestic and foreign intelligence has been -- was blurred on September 11. And so there has to be that. And also there has to be through some other consolidations of those 14 agencies as well. KING: Yesterday, on a Sunday morning news show, Senator Joseph Lieberman was asked about a running mate. Said there is nobody he's closer to in the Senate than John McCain. Would you run with Joe Lieberman?

MCCAIN: No. I like and admire Joe Lieberman. He's a very fine, decent friend and American. But I would not, nor would I contemplate doing so.

KING: John Snow has been nominated to become the new secretary of the treasury. What do you make of that appointment?

MCCAIN: I think he's a good man. I think he brings a lot of talent, expertise and previous government service to the job. I believe he will do a fine job.

KING: He's helped you financially, hasn't he?

MCCAIN: He was a supporter of mine, but maybe we shouldn't be talking about that if he wants to keep his job.

KING: You mean he supported you when you ran against President Bush, then-Governor Bush?

MCCAIN: He supported me actually in my Senate campaigns but also he contributed to my presidential campaign, yes.

KING: Were you an admirer of Paul O'Neill?

MCCAIN: I liked him very much. I admired his candor. Presidents have to make tough decisions and I'm not in a position to second guess the president of the United States. Perhaps he could have done it more gently but these things are never pleasant.

KING: Would you agree the economy needs a lot of help?

MCCAIN: Absolutely, absolutely. And not only do wealthy Americans need help, but low income and medium income Americans including those unemployed who we failed to take care of as we left town a few weeks ago.

KING: Someone might laugh -- why do wealthy Americans need help?

MCCAIN: Well, I think there is an argument to reduce some tax burdens and inequities that would increase investment, but I think we did that pretty well the last time around -- which I opposed.

KING: Senator Strom Thurmond retires, his 100th birthday party. Trent Lott said that we would have been better off if the then segregationist candidate Strom Thurmond had won the presidency in '48. Was he kidding?

MCCAIN: I'm sure -- I didn't see it, but I've known Trent Lott for over 20 years and I know he doesn't hold any segregationist views and he clearly did not mean words like that in that fashion. Having said that, I myself speaking from personal experience and having misspoken on a few occasions during my 20 years in public life, Trent Lott should apologize and -- to anyone who he has offended and then we can move on.

KING: Mary Landrieu got re-elected in Louisiana on Saturday. So what is your overall read now of new Senate?

MCCAIN: Fifty-one/forty-nine for all intents and purposes. Senator Jeffords votes with -- in caucuses with the Democrats.

I think where it cries out for bipartisanship, as I mentioned on election night you to, I felt the Republican breeze. It was not a Republican gale.

And we're still going to have to work together. We're going to have to act in a bipartisan fashion for only reasons that major pieces of legislation require 60 votes.

And I think that we have some massive, significant challenges ahead of us that deserve our bipartisanship and it doesn't deserve the kind of pork barreling and special interest legislation to pay off the special interests who played such a big role in the last election with more money, nearly a billion dollars, Larry, was spent just on television commercials.

KING: One quick call before we leave you. Toronto, Canada, hello?

CALLER: Yes, Senator McCain, I would like to know if the U.N. Security Council recommends not going to war with Iraq, would you still be in support of an effort to invade Iraq regardless?

MCCAIN: You know, that's a very important question. I don't know how I would react because it would -- I would have to know the rational for doing so.

But President Bush, I think, very appropriately has made it very clear that the United States of America will act in its interests and will not be bound by the decisions of the United Nations just as his father did in 1991 when we sought coalition and approval and all of that from our allies and friends including the United Nations.

So I would hope that that scenario doesn't arrive. But the United States still has to act as a sovereign nation in what it believes is in its vital national security interests.

KING: And do you support that act?

MCCAIN: If he has to. But I don't envision that scenario.

KING: Thanks, Senator. Always good seeing you.

MCCAIN: Thank you, Larry.

KING: Senator John McCain in Phoenix. His new book, "Worth the Fighting For."

When we come back, Kelly Marino and her attorney Jayne Weintraub. She's the mother of Alex and Derek King who pled guilty to killing their father. Don't go away.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The state of Florida, plaintiff, versus Alex King, defendant. Case No. 015612B. Verdict: we the jury find as follows as to count one of the indictment, guilty of second degree murder, a lesser included offensive without a weapon.

We the jury find as follows as to count two of the indictment, guilty of arson as charged. So say we all this sixth day of December, 2002.



KING: We now welcome to LARRY KING LIVE, Kelly Marino, the mother of the King boys, Alex, 13, and Derek 14, who pled guilty to killing their father on November 14. They entered that plea agreement admitting to the killing of the third degree murder in Austin getting up to eight years in prison. Also Jayne Weintraub the criminal defense attorney hired by Rosie O'Donnell.

You don't represent any particular client in this?

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, KING BOTHERS LAWYER: No, not anymore. I came in for a limited purpose and represented Alex king in the motion for a new trial.

Basic quick facts, Terry King was bludgeoned to death and the body set on fire. It happened seven weeks after the 13-year-old son Derek came back to live with them. The 12-year-old son Alex after more than six years of living with the foster family, then a family friend Ricky Chavis takes Derek and Alex to the authority and the boys confess to killing their father. You didn't have -- the boys lived with their father, right, Kelly?

KELLY MARINO, MOTHER OF KING BOYS: Yes. My youngest one had lived with him for 10 years, I guess.

KING: So, you didn't have custody?

MARINO: No, not physical custody. We didn't have a custody agreement.

KING: But you saw a lot of the boys?

MARINO: Yes, when there I actually saw Alex quite a bit up until I left town in '99.

KING: You left why?

MARINO: Well, I had a short marriage. I got married and that didn't work out. But that's how I...

KING: So it is your ex-husband that was killed?

MARINO: Yes. We had split up eight years ago, so...

KING: How did you find out -- first, how did you find out he was killed?

MARINO: Let's see, my stepfather called me and told me. And he told me he had burned -- he had burned up in a fire. He didn't tell me that...

KING: You didn't know he was murdered?


KING: When you learned he was murdered and somehow your sons were involved, were you shocked?

MARINO: Definitely.

KING: They never showed you any signs of being violent types or --

MARINO: Never, never.

KING: What did you make of the whole story, the Ricky Chavis? What's....

MARINO: I actually didn't know what to believe. I didn't know what to believe. I just knew what the investigators told me. And when I went there, you know to see my little boys, you know, they were still my same little boys. They weren't, you know -- they weren't violent or anything like that, like everybody is saying.

KING: Do you know Ricky Chavis?

MARINO: No, never met him in my life, no.

KING: Never meet him?

Were you surprised at the involvement he 4 with your boys?

MARINO: Definitely.

KING: Did you get along with your ex-husband?

MARINO: Oh, yes. Definitely.

KING: It was a friendly kind of break?


KING: He did keep in touch with you about how the boys were doing and the like?


KING: So Jane what -- why then if this is true, why would they say they kill him if they didn't kill him?

MARINO: Look at the Central Park jog case, Larry. I mean, we know more now than we ever did about false confessions. Children of all people are so vulnerable for seeking approval from adults and everybody. You have to look at the circumstances under which they supposedly confessed. I mean, remember, these confessions were never challenged in court. The lawyers never sought to even suppress them.

So we don't know anything about the confessions except for according to the police they confessed. We know that Ricky Chavis had the boys for two days in seclusion. He's raping Alex. We know that he was molesting him for almost a year at that point. He keeps them, kidnaps them basically, smokes pot with them for two days and brings them to the police and says, here, give this statement. Your juveniles nothing will happen to you, and then he sits outside the doors while the kids "confess."

KING: Why would authorities force a 13-year-old and a 14-year- old to confess to a murder? What are they gaining out of that?

MARINO: A conviction. Why do they force anyone to confess. Why do they force 17-year-old kids for 11 years to sit behind bars and we know now through DNA conclusively...

KING: There was two trials going on, the whole thing was confusing. Was this poorly handle?

MARINO: It was very poorly handled. I think the prosecutor handled it very poorly. I think he made poor choices. He went into court room A and said Ricky Chavis did it. He went into court room B and said the boys did it. There is no evidence whatsoever, by the way, that Alex did anything except that he was an eyewitness.

KING: And Derek there is evidence?

MARINO: There is quote "these confessions." That's what there is. But they were never challenged in court so we don't know. You know what the bigger issue is, Larry, it is more and more predominant and prevalent that children are being charged as adults in our system, but they're not adults, they're kids. And then the problem becomes what to do with them.

KING: How is her Rosie's involvement?

MARINO: That was her heart break here. She call me out of the blue. I never knew her.

KING: How did she know about you?

MARINO: She made some phone calls, and wanted a woman lawyer who handled murder cases in Florida and she was referred to me.

KING: Have you visited your children? MARINO: Yes.

KING: When did you last see them?

MARINO: About a week ago, I guess.

KING: How are they doing? They're together now, right?

MARINO: Yes, right now they are.

KING: They're going to be separated, though?


KING: And they'll do eight years each. No?

WEINTRAUB: One has six year left to do and one has seven years left to do.

KING: Time served?

WEINTRAUB: The get one year day for day time served. They get only 10 percent off...

KING: What are they saying to you, Kelly?

WEINTRAUB: At this point we don't know if we are going to file and appeal at this point, Larry. I don't think that would be really appropriate to talk about what they're saying about the case.

KING: OK, I won't ask about the case. You can appeal a plea agreement?

WEINTRAUB: Sure, we can move to withdraw the plea as it was taken.

KING: Are you thinking of doing that?

WEINTRAUB: I am very seriously thinking of doing that.

KING: The danger is they may get more time.

WEINTRAUB: That is the danger and that's the problem. The problem is none of these issues have been challenged before. And the bigger problem is if we can resolve some of these issues, then we would give up the right to appeal. For example, if we could get them into a juvenile facility, if there was any justice for juveniles instead of juvenile justice, which there isn't...

KING: Are they going to Rayford (ph).

WEINTRAUB: They're at the place across the street from Rayford (ph) where death row is.

KING: Will they go Rayford (ph) in. WEINTRAUB: No, they will go to a youthful jail. Which means they'll be with 25, 26-year-old men. Look at Alex's face, look in the monitor. He's a baby. He's an absolute baby. He acts like a baby. He looks like a baby. He talks like a baby. He is emotionally, physically and mentally underdeveloped and is only 13 now. What is he going to be in 6 years?

KING: Are you convinced, Kelly, they didn't do it?

MARINO: One hundred percent convinced.

KING: Did they say they didn't do it?


KING: So they're telling their mother they didn't do it so Chavis did it, right? There is three choices here. They say they didn't do it, they say Chavis did it. So you say they were -- the theory here is they were coerced?

WEINTRAUB: I think the confession, which has never been challenged in court, my theory is that it was coerced.

MARINO: It wasn't really coerced, I don't believe. I believe it was -- they were told that this was the best deal they were going to get. They were going to get this or they could possibly get life is what they were told.

KING: That's kind of a coercion. I guess so. Do this and we'll give you eight years or you'll die or...


KING: Were they well represented, the boys?


KING: You don't think so?



MARINO: But what I will tell you they weren't allowed to have their mother in the mediation and mom wasn't allowed to be part of it. That's the other issue I would like to talk about.

KING: I do, too. We'll take a break and come back and include your phone calls on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Tim McGraw, one of the great stars in country western music will be with us tomorrow night. Don't go away.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you remember when was first time that Rick Chavis kissed you? ALEX KING: Yes, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When was that? Do you remember -- was that before Derek came back?

A. KING: Yes, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But before he kissed you, had he told you some other things like it is normal for men and boys to kiss?

A. KING: Yes, ma'am. He said that that was a normal thing and he told me about other relationships he had.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He said he had relationship with other boys?

A. KING: Yes, ma'am.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: During this period of time, were you drinking, smoking or what?

A. KING: We were -- well that night we had smoked some marijuana before we went to sleep. And me, Derek, Rick went in his bedroom, went to sleep. And then...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who all slept in Ricky's bedroom that night?

A. KING: Me, Derek and Rick.


KING: That's Alex, 13, his brother, Derek, they in plea bargain have pled guilty and Kelly, their mother, is insisting they didn't do it and they have told her they did not do it.

We're going to take calls in a minute. Kelly was not allowed to participate in the -- any of the discussions?

WEINTRAUB: In the mediation, no.

KING: Why not?

WEINTRAUB: We really don't know. There's no record of what went on in the mediation. There's no court reporter. There was no tape recorder.

KING: What reason were you given for not being allowed in?

MARINO: The just said that the boys were their clients and I'm not, even though I'm their mother. KING: The boys' lawyers didn't want you in?


WEINTRAUB: When Kelly called and told me this I told her to go knock on the door an tell them you're the parent and you have a right to know what is going on.

KING: Did you do that?

MARINO: Yes. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) a bunch of reporters there and...

WEINTRAUB: They wouldn't let her in.

MARINO: ... they would not let me in. They would not come out or nothing.

WEINTRAUB: The boys were allowed to see her that night but they weren't allowed to discuss the details.

KING: That don't make any sense.


KING: Would you admit, Kelly, that these boys had problems? The foster parents reported they had some difficulties with them, right? That...

MARINO: I have...

KING: Testified at the trial that Derek had behavioral problems, attention deficit disorder.

WEINTRAUB: Well Derek does have...

KING: Let her answer.


MARINO: I'm just saying that I do not know of any emotional or problems before that.

KING: You have since learned though that...

MARINO: Well, I was told different things about the problems, what we're calling problems is normal like teenage boy things.

KING: Something had to affect these kids, right?

WEINTRAUB: That's why I filed the motion to have them called incompetent, just to have a psychological evaluation done. I don't think they really appreciated the...

KING: Has there been no psychological evaluation?

WEINTRAUB: No. The judge wasn't interested in that. And the lawyers didn't ask for it that were representing him.

KING: No psychological...


KING: Los Angeles, we as go to calls for Kelly Marino and attorney Jayne Weintraub. Hello?

CALLER: Hi. I was wondering if Kelly and Jayne were aware of the involvement of deputy sheriff of Escambia County, Reggie Jurnigan, who was present at the questioning, was a close personal friend of Ricky Chavis, had visited his home on very regular occasions. He was fired from the Pensacola Department -- he was fired...

KING: Caller, how do you know all this?

CALLER: Associated Press. In March he was fired from the Escambia County Sheriff's Department. In August he was quietly rehired and he was...

KING: So your question is...

CALLER: My question is what is the involvement of the Escambia County Sheriff's Department in this story? And why hasn't it been investigated and why didn't David Rimmer look into this?

MARINO: Thank you. That's what we're wondering. Thank you very much.

That's what we're wondering, too. Every time I brought it up during this to the attorneys, they go, No, don't go there. This will murky the water. They said, No. And I'm asking the FDLE to come in and investigate this.

WEINTRAUB: That's the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The lawyers -- there was no investigator, no private investigator, there were no expert witnesses were called in the case. It was...

KING: Why?

WEINTRAUB: You'd have to ask the lawyers who tried the case. I don't know.

KING: What do you make of it?

WEINTRAUB: What I make of it, Larry, is -- I want to pick up the pieces now and I want to make the statement that without Rosie O'Donnell getting involved as the Champion for the Children, we need guardians, we need guardians for the children to be at the advocates for the children. We need a guardian so the parents understand.

Nobody has the right to terminate her rights except the court of law. That wasn't even the issue here. What's going to happen in five and six years when the kids come out? What are we going to have? We're going to have hardened criminals, these babies are kept with adults. We need teachers. The teachers that are there aren't equipped to teach a 13 and 14-year-old. They're ready to teach 17 and 18-year- olds. There's a difference.

There's no therapy. There's no counseling. There are no certified psychologists for the kids. They're not getting treatment. Of course they need help. Nobody winds up in jail that doesn't need help?

KING: Where is Chavis now?

WEINTRAUB: Chavis is awaiting trial on molestation charges and we really don't know the state of that.

KING: Is he in jail?

WEINTRAUB: He's still in jail.

KING: Vancouver, British Columbia, hello.

CALLER: Hi, my question's for the mother. I would like to know why and how could she desert all four of her children.

MARINO: I did not desert my children. That is one thing that has been reported very wrong. And I just chose not to speak out and say anything different.

KING: Well, tell us.

MARINO: Well, we were having financial problems back then. And my dad's wife, Lisa, you know her, she suggested that they stay in a boys' home for a short period of time, this was going to be a temporary thing.

So as time went on, you know, they were still there and all that, they were well adjusted. Well, actually once the boys' home closed down, a couple of months or whatever, the boys' home closed down, they had to go to private homes.

KING: Foster home?

MARINO: Well, people that came and volunteered and...

KING: But she said you -- did you leave them?

MARINO: No, I did not desert my children. I was very much a part of their lives and I saw them frequently. I lived in the same town. It's a small town. And...

KING: Then you left?

MARINO: I left in '99. And that was...

KING: You got married?

MARINO: ... many years after. I got married later on after I moved.

KING: It comes to, do you ever put any guilt on yourself, Kelly?

MARINO: Oh, yes. Oh, most definitely.

KING: I could have done something different here?

MARINO: Yes. Nobody goes through anything like this, special being away from their children without feeling guilt. I feel tons of guilt.

KING: Did Terry, their father, the deceased. Did he tell you they had problems?

MARINO: No. Everything he told me about Alex was, you know, perfect. And Derek had problems when he came back to, you know, from being -- from in the Lays' home for so long. And then coming back. (UNINTELLIGIBLE).

KING: He did ever mention anything about Chavis to you? Terry?


KING: Like him?

MARINO: That is a story -- well, yes, he did and everything. And the last reports were a little different. But I was not allowed to speak about that in court. I was not allowed to say anything about it.

WEINTRAUB: She wasn't recognized in the courtroom.

KING: Pensacola, hello.

CALLER: Good evening, Larry. How are you?

KING: Fine.

CALLER: My question is for the mother. And unfortunately the person before me really asked the question that I wanted to an answer to.

It seems -- and I'm from Pensacola. I have followed this case totally. And it certainly seems in everything that can be brought up from any area of the media and from the mother, she basically abandoned these children.

Forget '99 when she got married. She basically abandoned these children. Now you step back in and want to take charge. Where were you in the past?

WEINTRAUB: Can I just answer that, Larry?

KING: He asked her. So she can answer and then you.

MARINO: I was there. I was very much there and I was -- people keep saying where were you, where were you? I was right there things have been reported wrong. When I try to tell people, hey, I was, you know...

KING: You spoke to them, saw them constantly?

MARINO: No. What happened was -- it is a long story the thing with Derek. And...

WEINTRAUB: The short story is when Derek was in foster care, the foster parents, whenever Terry and Kelly would call every couple of weeks and wanted to go see them once a month, it was too exhausting emotionally for everybody involved.

Derek got upset and so did the Lays, the foster parents. The Lays asked Kelly to step back because it was so upsetting and disruptive in her household. For the good of Derek she stopped seeing him for over a year...

KING: I wan to pick up on that. Let me get a break and I'm going to pick right up on that and take more calls, too. Don't go away. We'll be right back.


DEREK KING: I hit him once and then I hit him again. I was afraid that he might wake up and see us. I just kept on hitting him. Hitting him somewhere around 10 times.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All the blows to what area?

D. KING: The face, the face, the left side of the face and forehead.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where were you hidden when your father came looking for you by Ricky Chavis?

A. KING: Well, Ricky had brought -- had right in front of his bedroom door, he had -- I was under some carpet. He had cut a hole in the floor and like put hinges on it and a latch. And put some carpet down there and a lamp. And, like, we would hide there every time.

KING: This is a tragedy all the way around. You tell me that these boys are in solitary?

WEINTRAUB: They are in solitary confinement and they have been for over a year.

KING: Because?

WEINTRAUB: They can't be in general population. Look at them, they're babies. They're little they'll get devoured.

KING: So they're sitting in separate cells?

WEINTRAUB: Four by six cell, 24/7. Now at Lake Butler, they do get out to exercise and the guards have been actually very nice and they've taken pretty good care of the boys.

KING: They get an education?

WEINTRAUB: They don't get an education.

KING: Nobody teaches them.

WEINTRAUB: No, nobody knows in the adult system how to teach a 12 and 13-year-old. They're in an adult system. That's the problem. They're not in a juvenile justice facility. They're in an adult prison.

KING: And how does the state defend that?

WEINTRAUB: They would treat it as adults, they're convicted criminals, and that's the answer that you get from the prison, too.

KING: Aiken, South Carolina, hello.

CALLER: Hello. The question I have is for the mother. I'm curious to what extent that she will do when these kids get out of jail to make them productive citizens, to give them counseling or what have you?

KING: Boy, they're going to need a lot of that.

MARINO: Whatever it takes. And I have -- I already -- we had a plan -- or we had plans, actually, before, you know, they wore convicted. So we had things already planned. And...

KING: You were going to be there for them?

MARINO: Yeah, I'll...

KING: When you visited them, was that the first time you had seen them in some time?

WEINTRAUB: No, she saw them a few weeks ago. She saw them the day of this plea bargain.

KING: Naples, Florida, hello. Naples, hello.

CALLER: Yes, this question is for Miss Marino and not her attorney. I'd like to know since 1999, what type of monitoring and input did you have while your sons lived with their father?

KING: Fair question.

MARINO: Let's see. Well, I called there -- I called the Lays (ph)... WEINTRAUB: Foster parents.

MARINO: Yeah, the foster parents, and where my oldest little boy was, and sometime, you know, she would pick up and talk to me. And other times, you know, she didn't, or, you know...

KING: They blocked you from seeing or talking to them?

MARINO: Yeah, that happened -- yeah, it started years ago where she -- you know, I was blocked from seeing -- or all the family was.

WEINTRAUB: Plus she trusted Terry then, right?

MARINO: Yeah, and in Terry. I saw Alex up until I left town in '99. And so I saw him frequently.

KING: Are these boys very different?

MARINO: Yes. You mean personalities?

KING: Yeah.

MARINO: Yeah, pretty much, yes. They have different tastes in things. And one likes books. One likes, you know, movies.

WEINTRAUB: One doesn't.


KING: Winona, Minnesota, hello.

CALLER: Yes. My question is for the attorney.

KING: Yeah.

CALLER: Were the two boys represented by two different attorneys? And if so, did that affect their strategy and the ultimate outcome with the plea bargaining?

KING: Good question.

WEINTRAUB: They were represented by two different lawyers. I don't think that had any effect on the outcome of the plea bargain, because they really did this together. The lawyers worked well together from what I saw.

KING: You're implying, Jayne, well, you're more than implying that these lawyers got them a bad deal here.

WEINTRAUB: I didn't say that.

KING: OK. What are you saying?

WEINTRAUB: I'm saying that it is unfortunate that from the evidence I have seen that Alex King will sit in jail. And...

KING: He incredibly -- you believe he had absolutely nothing to do with it.

WEINTRAUB: I do believe he had absolutely nothing to do with it. And he's the one that I spoke with. So bear in mind, I did not speak with Derek. I did not have an attorney/client privilege with Derek...

KING: But you spoke to Derek.

WEINTRAUB: ... so I really can't tell you. And also remember the confessions -- supposed confessions -- were not challenged in court.

I'm not here to trash the lawyers. I'm not going there. I'm here to promote the fact these kids need help and they need to get help in the juvenile justice system. That's it.

KING: That would be clear to you if they premeditatively did it at age 13 and 14? Is that what you're saying?

WEINTRAUB: If they had a seven- and eight-year sentence and were coming out, yeah. Because otherwise what are you going to do with them?

KING: What are you going to do? What's the answer?

WEINTRAUB: What are they going to -- well, what we have to do is help them. We have to find a way to educate them in a juvenile facility.

KING: The problem is...

WEINTRAUB: They're equipped to deal with them.

KING: ... that as a society, we don't understand it.

WEINTRAUB: But other words, you're giving up on kids, you give up on society.

KING: What they don't understand, they push aside, right? Isn't that...

WEINTRAUB: Well, that's what's happened here. And that I think that also is an element that went into it. None of the people, none of the participants here were parents.

KING: Nobody?

WEINTRAUB: No, none of the lawyers were parents. And I think that that is an interesting element, because aside from being an aggressive advocate in court, I'm a mom. And we all have those sides.

KING: Let me get a break. I'll ask Kelly how she lives with this every day, and we'll take some more calls, too. We'll be right back.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Pretty much you could do anything you wanted over at Rick Chavis' house?

A. KING: Pretty much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He didn't make you do things like chores, did he?

A. KING: No, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Didn't make you wash the dishes?

A. KING: No, ma'am.


A. KING: Well, there wasn't any grass to mow but...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Didn't make you go to school?

A. KING: No, ma'am. Though he did say that education was important, stuff like that. But he didn't make me go to school, no.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. And he didn't make you go to church?

A. KING: No, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Didn't make you go see people you didn't want to see?

A. KING: No, ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So it was pretty cool place over there?

A. KING: Yes, ma'am.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now you say you loved your dad. You did things together, right?

A. KING: Yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You identified all the love letters you wrote to Rick.

A. KING: Yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Similar letters like this you wrote to your dad?

A. KING: No, sir.

(END VIDEO CLIP) KING: You liked Terry a lot, your ex-husband, right?

MARINO: Yes, definitely.

KING: What has been the effect on all you of all this?

MARINO: This has been my hardest year of my life. It has been so hard.

KING: Have you needed help?


KING: Been depressed?

MARINO: Very. I've been very depressed, and...

KING: Have they medicated you?


KING: Are you getting really low?

MARINO: Yes. I get -- oh, god, in the beginning, especially around the holidays and in the beginning it was so hard. I mean, I couldn't even look at Christmas lights or anything without crying.

KING: Where should these boys be?

WEINTRAUB: In a juvenile justice facility in the state of Florida.

KING: They should be definitely be?

WEINTRAUB: They should be with other children. They need to learn social skills. They need to have education. They need life skills. They need to learn communication.

KING: Melowna, British Columbia, hello.

CALLER: Hello, Larry. It is a pleasure to finally talk to you, first of all.

KING: Thank you.

CALLER: I could like to know would Larry King, the father, tell his -- let his wife know or did he know that those kids were being abused by a pedophile?

MARINO: Actually, the last time I spoke to him was two days before he was murdered. He asked me if I was going to be home on that Tuesday. He said I have something very important to talk to you about. And he wouldn't tell me that it was at the time. He said -- he asked what time would be a good time to call. And so we set up a time and all that, and, of course two days later he was murdered.

KING: So he had not said anything to you about his -- any suspicions?

MARINO: No, but I believe with all my heart he found out something and that's what he was going to talk to me about.

KING: Cambria, California, hello.

CALLER: Yes, Larry, thank you for taking the call.

Why doesn't Jeb Bush give these two boys the greatest Christmas gift and commute this sentence?

KING: Jayne.

WEINTRAUB: Good question. Why don't you write him and ask him because the lawyers should be doing that. And I know the governor is in touch with the department of corrections and I pray that happened.

KING: Is he because he has know parental pain. Not to this kind of existent but he certainly has.

To Apple Valley, Minnesota. Hello.

CALLER: Good evening. What I would like to ask Miss Marino is have you contemplated or do you have plans for selling your side of the story to either the print or broadcast media?

MARINO: I don't have any immediate plans. Like I said, like I've told everybody, I have kept journals my whole relationship with Terry and he kept journals as well. And...

KING: Have you been contacted by tabloids?


KING: Do they want to pay you for your story?

MARINO: Yes, I've been contacted by every crook in the world it seems like.

KING: Do you think about giving it?

MARINO: At times.

KING: You don't have a lot of money.


KING: But you would be looked upon as someone taking advantage of the situation, do you think? Don't you think?

WEINTRAUB: I think she would be looked at like that, and it's a shame because maybe that's a way she could have money for the boys when they come out. Wouldn't that be nice.

MARINO: Plus me having to go down there and visit and all that costs a lot of money. WEINTRAUB: It cost a lot of money every time she makes a trip. There have been a lot of calls about Kelly's past and if she were there, would it have made a difference. As parents, Larry, as a parent yourself, you know, we all do the best we could do. I'm sure in Kelly's heart she did the best she could do. It was hard enough to leave those boys. I spent time with Kelly.

KING: They're adorable.

WEINTRAUB: They're phenomenal boys. I know Kelly as a mother. I know her for the person she is now to stand up to all this public scrutiny, and come back and reclaim her children. And as a community and as a country, we should applaud the mother coming back to get the babies and not discourage her from doing that.

KING: Has Rosie asked to meet the children?

WEINTRAUB: She has not. I think that would be some kind of exploitation at any time, of course. I think the day will come. I have never even met Rosie O'Donnell, and I don't know if you know this or not, but part of my retainer agreement with Rosie was that she maintained anonymity and that she not be...

KING: Somebody found it out though, right?

WEINTRAUB: Well, the lawyers know and somehow it was leak shortly thereafter.

KING: Best of luck, Kelly.

MARINO: Thank you. And I want to Thank Rosie O'Donnell so much and Jayne so much for being there.

WEINTRAUB: Thank you, Larry.

KING: Kelly Marino, the mother of Alex and Derek King who pled guilty to killing their father. She says they didn't and they told her they didn't. And Jayne Weintraub, the criminal defense attorney hired by Rosie O'Donnell.

We will take a break. We thank Senator John McCain for being with us earlier as well.

We'll take a break, and when we come back we'll tell you about tomorrow night, a terrific guest coming. Don't go away.


KING: Tomorrow night on LARRY KING LIVE, one of the great Country stars Tim McGraw. I loved his father too, Tug McGraw. You've got to believe Tim McGraw our very special guest. Well all get your updates on the latest from United Stated senators discussion Iraq.


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