Return to Transcripts main page
Nancy Grace for June 24, 2005, CNNHN
Aired June 24, 2005 - 20:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: Tonight, breaking news. Three beautiful boys went missing two days ago, ages 5, 6 and 11, in Camden, New Jersey. They have just been found dead. We go live to Camden and Allan Chernoff for all the latest.
Also, the Aruba mystery unsolved. The search for 18-year-old Alabama beauty Natalee Holloway rages on as a team of specialists fly into the tiny island of Aruba to find her. Natalee, on her high school trip, vanished into thin air just hours before she was headed back home to the States.
Tonight, five suspects remain behind bars in connection with Natalee`s disappearance, including an Aruban judge, Paul Van Der Sloot. His son and three others also locked up tonight.
And a brand-new video game targeted straight at our children. It`s titled "25 to Life," one of the most violent ever marketed. It rewards the player for killing cops.
Good evening, everybody. I`m Nancy Grace. And I want to thank you for being with us tonight.
We go live to Aruba. New developments tonight in the disappearance of 18-year-old Natalee Holloway. The newest suspect, Aruban Judge Paul Van Der Sloot, under intense questioning tonight, even as a team of specialists touches down in Aruba, joining FBI and Aruban police in the search for American girl Natalee Holloway.
And "25 to Life," it`s a violent video game about to hit the store shelves. Let me warn you. It`s all about one thing: Killing our police. Tonight, we say no! It`s a game that makes a joke of gunning down our cops.
But, first, tonight, just in, breaking news. These three boys who went missing two days ago in Camden, New Jersey, are angels tonight. The three have been found dead, ages 5, 6 and 11. They disappeared in an instant while playing in their own yard.
They were outside with a water hose, squirting it. The mom of one of the boys went inside just to check on the oven, and when she came back, they were gone. We are waiting to be hooked up with CNN correspondent Allan Chernoff in Camden.
Now in Miami, defense attorney Michelle Suskauer; in Atlanta, defense attorney Renee Rockwell, prosecutor Eleanor Dixon; in New York, clinical psychologist Dr. Patricia Saunders; and joining us by phone, WTXF reporter Tom Burlington.
Before we go to Tom Burlington, Elizabeth, can you show me the live shot? This is a live shot we are bringing you from Camden, New Jersey. As you can see behind the black tarp, we believe there is a car parked there in which the little boys` bodies were found locked in a trunk.
You see that it has been cordoned off apparently by what appears to be sheets to keep away the eyes of the public.
Tonight, Agosto`s father, David Agosto, thought to look in the car. He opened the car trunk, looked inside, and then fell to his knees, screaming. His little boy, Daniel Agosto, age 6. Also perishing, Jesstin Pagan, age 5, Anibal Cruz, age 11. These three angels tonight.
David Agosto, the father of the 6-year-old, overcome by grief, had to be taken from the car and taken away by EMTs. The three boys, the focus of an intense search by dozens of law enforcement officials, community residents, last seen just outside squirting each other with a garden hose.
Let`s go to Tom Burlington with affiliate station WTXF. Tom, what can you tell us, friend?
TOM BURLINGTON, WTXF REPORTER: It was a horrifying scene here, Nancy. We were outside the home. We saw David Agosto go up to that car, open that trunk, and find the worst possible scene imaginable, his son and the other two little boys inside, as you said.
GRACE: We are showing you shots of the children, children found in the past minutes inside the back of a car in the trunk. Apparently, the trunk locked.
Tom, can you tell me, how far away was this car from the home?
BURLINGTON: Just steps, Nancy. It`s in the backyard, just from the left of Anibal Cruz`s home, the home where most people have been here for these days searching and keeping a vigil here. That car is right out in the open in plain sight. Of course, the big question here tonight is, was that car searched?
GRACE: My question is, do they suspect foul play, Tom?
BURLINGTON: We don`t know at this point. This happened just before 7 o`clock. By 7:30, police had arrived and cordoned off the area. Obviously, they have a potential crime scene. But at this time, we just don`t know.
But as you described before, these boys were last seen playing with a garden hose in the yard right next to the car. And it is conceivable that these children were playing in the car and could have accidentally locked themselves in or, as you said, it is also conceivable it could be foul play. We just don`t know at this point.
But again, the question is, with the car being so close to the home of one of the missing boys, was that car searched?
GRACE: So I guess your point is, if the car had been searched -- everybody, this is a live shot there in Camden, New Jersey. People standing by, stunned in grief. The bodies of three little boys found in the back of a trunk of a car just steps away from the home.
We are quickly going now to CNN correspondent Allan Chernoff. Allan, we are showing the viewers a shot right now of a community in shock. A 5- year-old, 6-year-old, and 11-year-old little boy found dead within the last hour in the back of a locked trunk.
Allan, it`s incredibly important that we know whether this car had been searched before the boys were found.
ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Nancy, it seems clear that the trunk had not been searched, even though the police here said that they were conducting an exhaustive search of the entire neighborhood where two of these children lived.
They clearly were not looking in the trunk. And I understand, from the Associated Press, it was a maroon Toyota vehicle, and that one of the parents actually had opened the trunk and collapsed to his knees, screaming. This, according to the Associated Press, quoting a neighbor there. And obviously, a very tearful situation in the Cramer Hill section of Camden, New Jersey.
Now, also, the police had been combing this three-square-mile area. They had hundreds of people going up and down. The police told us they were looking in every trash can, every swimming pool, between the alleys, but, obviously, not looking into the trunk of this vehicle, which apparently was parked right next door to one of the homes.
GRACE: Allan Chernoff, estimates have been up to 125 police officers there searching for the boys. Is that true, and they didn`t look in the trunk?
CHERNOFF: Nancy, it appears to be the case. And it was not only officers on foot. They also had the assistance of the New Jersey state troopers using helicopters. Philadelphia police aiding, as well. They had boats going up and down the Delaware River, which divides Camden, New Jersey, from Philadelphia.
They had a bloodhound searching for the children. In fact, yesterday, officers here said that a bloodhound had picked up the scent of at least one of the children along the Delaware River. There was some suspicion that perhaps the children had been lost in the river. Divers even had entered little inlets off of the river, of course, to no avail.
Again, a very, very tragic ending here for the city of Camden, New Jersey, which, as you know, has had many tragedies through its history, one of the most crime-ridden cities in America.
GRACE: Allan, could you explain to us, who was watching the children? Where were the moms and fathers of these three?
CHERNOFF: Well, I spoke with Elba Cruz this morning, one of the moms, on her front porch. She said that the children were playing in the yard right next to her house, this a side yard. She said that she was preparing dinner. She told me she stepped inside for between five and ten minutes, and that when she emerged, the children were gone.
Now, we`ve also heard from neighbors that there were other adults outside at the time. But, of course, it seems that somebody looked away. If the children themselves had gotten into the trunk, then perhaps they did it -- they clearly must have done it without any adult seeing exactly what happened.
But the bottom line is, we still do not know exactly how they did get into that trunk.
GRACE: Allan, do we have any idea the cause of death?
CHERNOFF: Well, we don`t have an official coroner`s report yet, of course. But it clearly could be from just loss of oxygen, asphyxiation. I mean, that clearly is a possibility. But again, at this point, that`s only expectation. We absolutely do not know the ultimate cause of death.
GRACE: Allan Chernoff, Tom Burlington with WTXF, thank you for being with us.
We are showing you a live shot of the search for three little boys that had been missing for some time now, ages 5-, 6- and 11-years-old. I`m sorry to have to report to you they were found dead in a car trunk.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANITA VAN DER SLOOT, MOTHER OF JORAN VAN DER SLOOT: Because in my conversation with Joran, Joran said, "I`m so afraid. They`re picking up Daddy, because that`s what they`re telling me. They`re going to pick him up because to ask him about all kinds of things, and they think he`s involved in anything. And I don`t want this to happen, and they should have respect for him."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: That is Anita Van Der Sloot. Both her husband, an Aruban judge, and her son, a 17-year-old, behind bars tonight in connection with the disappearance of Natalee Holloway.
Thank you for being with us. I`m Nancy Grace.
Tonight, the questioning goes on with Aruban Judge Paul Van Der Sloot. He is now behind bars. Let`s go straight down to CNN correspondent Karl Penhaul.
Karl, what`s the latest on the questioning of the judge?
KARL PENHAUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Police say they have been questioning Judge Paul Van Der Sloot for much of the day, and a law enforcement source close to the investigation says, right now, he`s not cooperating, Nancy.
GRACE: Not cooperating? Explain to me exactly, Karl, do we know if, in Aruba, which is under the Dutch legal system, do they have the right to remain silent and not answer questions?
PENHAUL: I believe that they do. And also, the other point to point out here is that during the first six hours of those interrogations, the suspects aren`t allowed a defense attorney to be present. And usually, as time goes on, in many of the other interrogation sessions, a defense attorney is not present, either.
And we understand today, while the judge was being questioned, his defense attorney was not present, Nancy.
GRACE: Now, I`m having a difficult time hearing you, Karl. Are you telling me they do not have a right to have an attorney present?
PENHAUL: Not during the first six hours, Nancy. They have no right for a defense attorney to be present. After that, as they get into the 48 hours and the eight days, during those interrogations, technically, they do have a right to have an attorney present.
In practice, though, few suspects ask for that right. And so few suspects actually have a defense attorney present during the interrogation.
GRACE: Well, Karl Penhaul, if his behavior earlier is any indication of whether he`s answering questions tonight, I doubt he is.
Elizabeth, could you show that video of this Aruban judge taking off and literally running from Karl Penhaul and others when they were trying to ask him about his knowledge of the disappearance of Natalee Holloway?
Karl Penhaul -- there he goes. He didn`t run for long, however. He`s behind bars tonight.
Karl, many legal scholars opined that his involvement could be as simple as covering for his son, helping his son and the other two, the Kalpoe brothers, then there`s the other deejay, helping the Kalpoe brothers and son come up with a story, covering for them, maybe removing something from his son`s car.
Now, there is speculation rife that he is even more involved in Natalee`s disappearance. What can you tell us?
PENHAUL: Well, what the prosecutors have told us is that he has been arrested as a suspect for possible involvement in the disappearance of Natalee Holloway. They haven`t given us any further details.
And of course, as those experts have been mentioning, that involvement could go from something very minor to something much bigger. Certainly, prosecutors at this stage not giving us any further details of that, Nancy.
GRACE: Also with us tonight from Aruba, a very special guest, Natalee Holloway`s aunt, Linda Holloway Allison.
Ms. Allison, thank you for being with us.
LINDA ALLISON, AUNT OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY: Well, thank you for having us on. We want to obviously say we`re just so thankful that the media is covering this. It also gives us information that we weren`t privy to by this media coverage.
GRACE: You know, Linda, that is so ironic that you are having to learn things about Natalee`s disappearance from the media.
ALLISON: Well, from the way this Dutch law is set-up, they cannot disclose any information that may jeopardize this case. So by Karl or any of these other reporters out here getting information, we learn a lot of our information by the TV. The family is briefed at least once a day, but, again, it`s very generic information and not very much detail.
GRACE: Linda, when you say the family is briefed every day, that it`s generic information, what type of information are they giving you, apparently, not anything about the facts of the case?
ALLISON: Just more like what they would tell the media. They`re very generic in what their comments are. And they tell us they can`t disclose any detailed information as far as what evidence they`re holding currently, why they might be holding the Dutch boy`s father. So we just have to wait and let them do their investigation.
GRACE: Everyone, with us is Linda Holloway Allison. This is Natalee`s aunt.
Linda, what do you make of this grown man, a judge, for Pete`s sake, being taken into custody?
ALLISON: Well, obviously, when we look at that video and see the body language, where he`s running in the car, we`ve seen other video where he`s sweating profusely, wringing his hands during the interview on another network.
And we`ve seen his body language. And with Beth and Jug confronting him the first night, and he`s telling his son, "Do not speak, do not say anything." If you had nothing to hide, you would come out very confidently and tell the truth.
And with the stories changing constantly, we hear a different story every few days, that there`s a different location that they`ve taken Natalee to, you know there`s something going on that`s not right.
GRACE: And very quickly, Karl Penhaul, before we go to break, is it true that a local lake was searched today with divers?
PENHAUL: Indeed. It`s more of a flooded refuse pit, from what I can gather, Nancy. It`s about 15, 20 minutes from the Van Der Sloot`s home. There are cars, old cars, that have been dumped there. It`s a pretty deep lake, not very big, though.
And today, coast guards, together with police and four FBI agents, floated over that lake searching it. And also, a sniffing dog went around the perimeter of that lake, sniffing in the refuse. Nothing was found, though, police have told us, Nancy.
GRACE: Any divers?
PENHAUL: Not in the pit, as far as we understand. It was a small boat that was floating on the surface, but no divers, as far as we understand.
GRACE: You know, Karl, we`ve got to go to break, but I just don`t understand it. Do they really believe they can look down in the water and see everything? The interminable wait to bring in divers in this case is astounding to me.
With me in Aruba with the latest regarding Natalee`s disappearance, Karl Penhaul, CNN correspondent. Also with us tonight, a special guest, Natalee`s aunt, is speaking out, Linda Holloway Allison.
Very quickly to "Trial Tracking." Two years ago, Manuel Gehring murdered his children. Take a look, 14-year-old Sarah, 11-year-old Philip. He wrapped them in plastic and buried them somewhere on I-80 in the Midwest.
Well, police arrested Gehring six days later, but they never found the bodies. Now, the FBI releases audiotapes of Gehring describing the grave`s whereabouts. But that`s it. That`s all the FBI has to go on. Gehring himself committed suicide while in prison, Feb. 2004.
If you have any information on Sarah and Philip so they can rest in peace, please, contact your local FBI or go on-line, fbi.gov.
GRACE: This is a live shot of Camden, New Jersey. Jesstin Pagan, age 5, Daniel Agosto, age 6, Anibal Cruz, age 11, after an intense search by hundreds of police and volunteers, the boys have just been found. They were dead, locked in a car trunk, practically in the yard of the home, just a few feet away.
Welcome back, everyone. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us.
Let`s go live back to Aruba and CNN correspondent Karl Penhaul. Karl, I understand they have searched a lake, which is basically a man-made pit, and that there are cars and debris in that lake. What I don`t understand is the delay in bringing in specialists.
For Pete`s sake, Karl, people have flown down from America, specialists from America, to join in the search. What`s the problem in Aruba?
PENHAUL: Well, of course, we do know those FBI divers were in here what seems like weeks ago now, Nancy. I guess it was probably two weeks ago now. But because the government never pinpointed a search area in the ocean for them, they never put a flipper in the water.
What we do know now, though, of course, is a Texas volunteer search team is on the ground, or should be on the ground completely in the next few moments. They`ve got all sorts of specialist equipment. They`ve got divers, they`ve got sniffing dogs, they`ve got sonar, and they should be getting their search underway in earnest as of tomorrow, Nancy.
GRACE: Well, you know, Karl, I appreciate all that, that the American crew from Texas is flying in. But what I keep wondering is why the Aruban government has been twiddling their thumbs waiting for the Americans to fly in to try and help.
We`ll be straight back down to Aruba with Karl Penhaul. And Natalee Holloway`s aunt is with us, Linda Holloway Allison, and our legal panel.
As we go to break, I want to remind you that we here at NANCY GRACE want very much to help solve unsolved homicides, help find missing people. Tonight, take a look at Bethany Markowski, now 15. Bethany has been missing for four years, taken when she was 11. She disappeared from a mall in Jackson, Tennessee, March 2001.
Take a look. If you have any info on Bethany Markowski, please, contact the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, 731-984-6662, or go on-line to beyondmissing.com. Please help us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARCIA TWITTY, MISSING GIRL`S AUNT: You know, you see a lot out there. You know, your head might travel there for a second, but your heart won`t let you. So you just bring it back to what the focus is, what we so desperately want, and that`s for Beth and Natalee and the whole family, everybody, all the Holloways, everybody, to get home safe. You know, we`re not losing hope.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Welcome back, everybody. I`m Nancy Grace. We will continue to update you on the discovery of the three young boys found dead in a car trunk in Camden, New Jersey. Intensive search for the three boys. We don`t know yet whether any foul play was involved. We are live there and are waiting for a press conference.
But right now, straight back down to Aruba. I want to go to Natalee Holloway`s aunt. Linda, what do you make of this specialist team flying in from America?
LINDA HOLLOWAY ALLISON, NATALEE`S PATERNAL AUNT: Well, when we first got news that the Texas Equusearch was coming in, it was almost, like, for me, a sigh of relief. This is like a big brother coming in to help. And we feel like here`s another resource that we can utilize to get closer to finding out where Natalee is.
GRACE: To Renee Rockwell here in the studio, who`s not only familiar with Dutch law but has spent a great deal of time on the island of Aruba. Their system very different from ours, Renee.
RENEE ROCKWELL, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Absolutely, Nancy. And this is a system where you can be held for 116 days without formal charges. And it`s absolutely incredible that they would have five different individuals in jail. The interesting thing is now the father of Van Der Sloot is in jail. The incredible difference is now we`ve got the father, the son, the two Kalpoe boys and the deejay that was working on the boat.
GRACE: What`s so incredible about that?
ROCKWELL: Well, because, now you can think of three things why the father would be in jail. Number one, was he involved in cooking up a story? Number two, was he involved with the disappearance or perhaps removal of the body? Or number three, is this a tactic? Tomorrow morning, Saturday morning, all five individuals appear in front of a judge. Now, Van Der Sloot`s going to see his father in court with him, and this could be a tactic by the Dutch police, the Aruban police, to maybe break him down and say, OK, fine. I`m not going to have my father go to jail for this.
GRACE: Well, Eleanor Dixon, what`s so incredible to me, unlike in our country, you don`t put somebody in jail, throw them in and throw -- hide the key without at least telling them what they`re charged with and what your evidence is, Eleanor.
ELEANOR DIXON, FORMER PROSECUTOR: That`s right, because you have to have probable cause to arrest someone, although I think I would like the Dutch system a little bit more.
GRACE: As a prosecutor.
DIXON: As a prosecutor, Nancy. That`s right.
GRACE: To Michelle Suskauer, defense attorney. How long can they keep these five behind bars without telling us the evidence?
MICHELLE SUSKAUER, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You know, it`s so different because if it was here, you know, they would have to have some probable cause before they arrested them. They certainly would be entitled to have an attorney present. But I think they`re going to be able to hold them for a while, and I think that, certainly, the prosecution would like this system...
SUSKAUER: ... that they could try to break these people down without having an attorney present...
GRACE: Up to...
GRACE: Up to 116 days, Michelle Suskauer, you`re right about that. You, as a defense attorney, and Renee will be doing a back flip if your client is behind bars over three months without even knowing any of the evidence.
And I`m directing this specifically to Natalee`s aunt, who is with us tonight, Linda Holloway Allison, because they`re not even releasing the information to you -- You`re Natalee`s blood relative -- much less to the defendants, the suspects in this case.
ALLISON: Right. And they don`t give information to my brother or Beth in any detail, as far as the evidence that they have. An attorney told me last night, as I was speaking to them just socially, sitting down, visiting, that you can actually pursue, I guess, an arrest if you have enough evidence. Even if we do not find Natalee, they assured me that there would be an arrest if there is enough evidence.
GRACE: To Dr. Patricia Saunders, clinical psychologist. Dr. Saunders, we`re showing a shot of the judge running from the cameras. According to Karl Penhaul, when he was -- and Linda, Natalee`s aunt, he was sweating, he was fidgeting, he was wringing his hands, said Linda, while they were asking him questions. What do you think, Patricia?
PATRICIA SAUNDERS, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: I think he`s clearly in a panic. You know, unfortunately for the law, and in this case, blood is thicker than water, and parents will trash their whole lives to protect a child when they`ve committed a crime.
GRACE: So bottom line, Dr. Saunders, his reaction could simply be him being distraught over his son and not having involvement.
However, Karl Penhaul, apparently, the Aruban authorities think differently. Karl, why won`t the owner of that party boat hand over the logs of whether the boat went out the night of Natalee`s disappearance? Everybody, this boat is a party boat. People go out with a deejay. They party hearty. They come back in the same night. It`s my understand, Karl, that boat is always docked about 1,000 yards or is it 1,000 feet from the Holiday Inn where Natalee was staying.
KARL PENHAUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It`s probably about 1,000 yards from the Holiday Inn, and it`s moored a little ways off shore. And what typically happens is that they`ll ferry passengers from the pier in a smaller boat onto the party boat. Now, certainly, the owner of that boat has refused to hand over to us or to show to us the ship`s log to see whether it was actually out on the night of May 29 and early May 30, the night that Natalee disappeared. But he says that normally, that boat isn`t out at sea on Sunday. Normally, that`s the boat`s night off, Nancy.
GRACE: Well, if it`s normally not out, then why won`t he hand over the logs? That`s my question. Take a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANITA VAN DER SLOOT, HUSBAND AND SON ARRESTED IN CASE OF MISSING GIRL: I think it`s ridiculous. But of course, it -- it hurts. It hurts because my husband gave 15 years of his integrity to this island, and that this could happen is just so bizarre.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: I think it would hurt even more if your little girl had disappeared without a trace.
To Eleanor Dixon. Eleanor, let`s get real. They all started off with the same story, that they had dropped the girl off at her hotel, at the Holiday Inn, watched her walk in. She stumbled. A security guard tried to help her. And they drove off. Now, suddenly, they`re pointing the fingers at each other having been with her last. Now Van Der Sloot, the judge`s son, is saying he left her alone out on the beach. She wanted to be there alone at about 3:00 AM in the morning. Changing stories, pointing the finger, the judge running away from questions?
DIXON: I think it`s real interesting because as far as the judge is concerned, in leaving, you`ve probably heard it said that a wicked man flees when no one pursues, but the righteous stand as bold as a lion, something always good to tell a . So you wonder why he`s fleeing and also why these people are changing their stories. The truth doesn`t change. And you can tell a story -- if it`s the truth, you can start in the middle or at the end, and it`s the same story. But they`re not doing that. They`re changing their stories completely. And that`s very suspicious.
GRACE: Right now, I`m hearing in my ear from Elizabeth. We have Allan Chernoff again with us from Camden, New Jersey, CNN correspondent. Allan, what can you tell us about those three boys? Is there any evidence of foul play, or is this a horrible accident?
ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Nancy, we simply don`t know yet whether there was foul play involved or a terrible accident. What we do know, of course, is that the three young boys, age 5, 6 and 11, were found dead this evening in the trunk of a Toyota vehicle parked right near the home of one of the boys. As you know, these three boys were playing Wednesday evening right outside of the home. The mother stepped inside. She told us this morning she had stepped inside for 5 to 10 minutes to prepare dinner. When she came back out, the boys were simply gone.
We`re awaiting a press briefing. That will probably be about another 20, 25 minutes.
GRACE: Allan Chernoff, CNN correspondent, with us. As you see, police closing in on the car. That was a shot of Agostino`s (ph) father finding the three boys dead.
Very quickly to break, and to tonight`s "All Points Bulletin." FBI and law enforcement across the country on the lookout for this man, Paul Harmon, a convicted felon. Harmon wanted in connection with the murder of a male associate after a drug dispute in Nevada, 1990. Harmon, in his 60s, 5-11, 175 pounds, blondish white hair, blue eyes. Take a look. If you have any information on Paul Harmon, call the FBI, 702-385-1281.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: This is not entertainment. This is serious stuff because the bottom line is that little Johnny should be learning how to read, not how to kill police officers. The game is called 25 to Life, and it`s the worst in a series of violent and gruesome games that lower the common denominator of decency.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: How many more cops have to be killed in the line of duty? That`s my big question tonight. And now glorifying cop killing, a brand- new video game called 25 to Life. You get a reward when you gun down a cop.
Now, we called Idos (ph) headquarters. They make the video. They distribute the video in California. We called them in Great Britain. When asked to comment on their video game, they said no comment. Tonight in Miami, Florida, trial attorney Jack Thompson. In Lynchburg, Virginia, Liberty University chancellor the Reverend Jerry Falwell, along with us, our panel.
Very quickly, to Jack Thompson. Explain to me this video game.
JACK THOMPSON, TRIAL ATTORNEY: Well, Nancy, it`s, in effect, a clone of the Grand Theft Auto games, which train you how to kill cops. There are two police officers and a dispatcher in Alabama dead because of the Grand Theft Auto games. These are murder simulators. A study came out of Indiana University last week that shows that kids, who are going to be buying these games, process these games in a different part of the brain than adults do, and it`s the part that leads to copy-catting. And that`s the problem. These video game companies are marketing and selling these games to kids, whose brains, they know, process them in such a way as to make the replication of the behavior more likely.
GRACE: Jack, you are so correct, because we logged on, Jack, just as you`re saying -- and you can buy the game on line -- it only asks a question, Are you over 17? And you punch yes and keep going. Any kid can get their mitts on it.
Very quickly, to Dr. Patricia Saunders. Everybody, you are seeing in the bottom right-hand of our screen fallen cops, cops dying in the line of duty. And look, $49.95! This is what this video costs.
To Dr. Patricia Saunders. In my mind, the difference between this and watching a movie is the interactive ability.
SAUNDERS: Yes. Exactly, Nancy. There have been thousands of studies now on realistic video violent games. And we`ve known for a long time that there`s a pretty high correlation between aggressive thinking, aggressive behavior and these games. The study that Thompson is talking about not only talked about kids processing it differently, but with kids who have non-violent history and violent history, it affects the frontal lobe and it teaches kids to lose their judgment. It teaches them to perform uninhibited, violent acts. No question about it.
GRACE: Take a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCHUMER: There`s a game that allows and encourages its players to kill cops, among a host of other things. It`s not yet released. It`s supposed to come out in September. We are asking every retailer in the New York area to say no to a cop-killer game and stock other, much more wholesome entertainment-type games.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Senator Chuck Schumer, asking for a boycott on the game. It`s called 25 to Life. It`s coming to store shelves in your neighborhood. And this is what your kid will be digesting.
I want to go to the Reverend Jerry Falwell. Reverend, first of all, thank you for being with us tonight...
REV. JERRY FALWELL, CHANCELLOR, LIBERTY UNIVERSITY: Surely.
GRACE: ... here on Headline News. What do you make of the game 25 to Life, preacher?
FALWELL: Well, you know, Grand Theft Auto was bad enough, and there`s so many, many violent video games. That isn`t to say all video games are bad. I suppose, well, 95 percent of America`s children play video games. But the problem is that the violence, the extreme violence, seems to sell better. And I was listening to someone justifying that in the business world, saying it`s -- well, that`s free enterprise. You could make the same case for crack cocaine and heroin. It might be that you can get a crowd and you`d hook people and children would buy it.
But for the -- for having corporate responsibility for children and for having personal sensitivity to children, Bill Gates and Microsoft and the manufacturers of these violent games should be ashamed of themselves.
GRACE: Very quickly, to defense attorney Michelle Suskauer. Response?
SUSKAUER: You know, this is what this is all about. It`s about parenting. If you`re going to allow these games out there -- and what we`re doing now is we`re publicizing this game. This game`s going to be very, very popular because it`s all over the news, and we`re saying, Don`t buy it. But if the parents want their kids to buy these games, then it`s called parenting. Parent your kids. By the way, it`s not OK to kill. It`s OK to have free choice and make your own decisions. So these games are out there. They`re either bought or they`re not bought.
GRACE: Michelle, I`m glad we agree on one thing. It`s not OK to kill. I`m glad I got that out of you. I`m surprised you didn`t throw the 1st Amendment at me. What about it, Renee Rockwell?
ROCKWELL: It`s absolutely a choice. There`s nothing more distasteful than teaching your children how to be desensitized to violence. Except you don`t want the government coming in and telling you what you can and cannot release. It`s about the 1st Amendment, and the government should not be involved in banning it.
GRACE: Eleanor, when you and I first started prosecuting together, one of my first friends in the Atlanta DA`s office, Officer Randy Shapani (ph), gunned down by a 15-year-old boy driving a car. I know you remember it. What do you have to say about 25 to Life, Eleanor?
DIXON: It`s really horrifying that something like this would be out here and that can be so easily purchased by children. And it`s scary because not only does it desensitize children, but it encourages them with the gang activity. And gang violence is alive and well.
GRACE: Reverend Falwell, I`ve only got 30 seconds left. Final thought, preacher?
FALWELL: Well, I agree. We can`t outlaw everything from everybody. But parents -- and I pastor a church of 25,000 members, and I`m in my 50th year, 50th year of doing that. I can tell you that these things do influence children to become desensitized to violence, that they do incite violence. And it would seem to me that the major business leaders of America, no matter how many dollars are involved, would consider the value of children, the police officers, innocent people, who one day are victimized because...
FALWELL: ... of our corporate irresponsibility.
GRACE: Final word, Jack Thompson?
THOMPSON: Jesus said, If any of you should cause one of these little ones to stumble, then it would be better for you that a millstone be tied around your neck and that you be cast into the sea. The parents...
GRACE: I don`t think the Supreme Court...
THOMPSON: ... who run these companies...
GRACE: ... is going to be listening...
THOMPSON: ... are irresponsible.
GRACE: ... to quotes out of the Bible, as much as I respect it. How can we fight this legally?
THOMPSON: We`re doing it in Alabama, and we`re going to hold Sony responsible for marketing this game to children. And now three good men in law enforcement are dead.
GRACE: Thanks, Jack.
Everyone, stay with us.
GRACE: Here they are, in all their glory, the control room. That`s Elizabeth in the middle, everyone, that causes so many problems.
GRACE: Hey, everybody. Welcome back. Thank you for being with us. Man, what a week in America`s courtrooms. Take a look at the stories, and more important, the people who touched all of our lives.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
A miracle to report, 11-year-old Boy Scout Brennan Hawkins alive, with his mom and dad.
JODY HAWKINS, BRENNAN HAWKINS`S MOTHER: People say that the heavens are closed and God no longer answers prayers. We are here to unequivocally tell you that the heavens are not closed, prayers are answered, and children come home.
GRACE: I only wish that all of our stories had this type of happy ending.
A new video game is set to hit the shelves. It`s called 25 to Life, and in the game, you get rewarded for killing cops. That`s right, our police.
SCHUMER: Little Johnny should be learning how to read, not how to kill police officers. When you run someone over with a vehicle in these games, real death occurs.
GRACE: Aruban judge Paul Van Der Sloot arrested. That`s right, a judge arrested and behind bars.
And there`s a shot of the judge literally running away from Karl Penhaul, who is asking him questions, running, physically, running away!
BETH HOLLOWAY TWITTY, NATALEE HOLLOWAY`S MOTHER: I have waited and I have waited and I have waited and I have listened, and I have heard lie after lie after lie unfold. And I have to have some answers, and I better get them soon.
GRACE: Prosecutors say he is one of the most prolific pedophiles ever in U.S. history. Convicted child molester Dean Schwartzmiller back in court. Revealed tonight, massive personal binders he kept, detailing 36,000 -- that`s right 36,000 -- molestations. How did this guy slip through the cracks?
Stunning developments in the John Evander Couey case out of Florida, the convicted sex offender charged in the kidnap and murder of 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford.
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: He did bury Jessica alive. He says in his own words, quote, "I`m a sick person. I don`t even know why I did it to her."
MARK LUNSFORD, JESSICA`S FATHER: He`s a pathological liar. He`s a piece of (DELETED). Sorry, but it`s the truth.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: I want to thank all of my guests tonight. But as always, my biggest thank you is to you for being with all of us, inviting us into your homes.
Coming up, headlines from all around the world, Larry on CNN. I`m Nancy Grace, signing off for tonight and for the week. See you here Monday night, 8:00 o`clock sharp Eastern. Until then, good night, friend.