Skip to main content


Return to Transcripts main page


Panel Discusses JonBenet Ramsey Case

Aired August 21, 2006 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, CNN HOST: Tonight, exclusive, what does JonBenet Ramsey's father think about the suspect in his daughter's murder? We'll ask John Ramsey's attorney for the past seven years, Lin Wood, in his first interview since last week's arrest of John Mark Karr.

And, did Karr really sip champagne on his flight from Bangkok to Los Angeles yesterday? We'll ask the CNN correspondent who was right there with him in business class.

Plus, another exclusive, the first in-depth interview with the professor who went to authorities after e-mailing for four years with someone believed to be the subject.

We'll unravel it all next on LARRY KING LIVE.


KING: Good evening.

We begin here in Los Angeles with Charlie Brennan, a reporter with the Rocky Mountain News, who has been covering the JonBenet Ramsey case since the start and has broken many significant stories.

Also here is Drew Griffin, CNN Correspondent, who flew on the same Thai Airway international flight that brought John Mark Karr back from Bangkok to L.A.

And, at the L.A. County Jail is Dan Simon.

What's the latest, Charlie?

CHARLIE BRENNAN, ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS: Well, the latest is Mr. Karr is due to appear in Los Angeles County Superior Court tomorrow at 8:30 in the morning on a fugitive warrant. The warrant, of course, is out of Boulder County containing the accusation of first degree murder, sexual assault and kidnapping.

And he will -- either he will have an opportunity to either waive extradition or say that he wants to fight it. And, if he chooses to fight it, then he may be in L.A. here for a few weeks while that unfolds. If not, Boulder can take him away promptly.

KING: What's the situation, Dan Simon, at the jail?

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Mr. Karr was booked into this jail late last night. You know, Larry, this is a very infamous facility this whole complex down here. This is where Robert Blake and O.J. Simpson spent some time in jail.

In terms of where he is now, he's in a 6'9" cell, very primitive conditions obviously. You're talking about a bed, a sink, and a toilet. When he got here last night they booked him.

They gave him the standard jail uniform, you know, the blues and the tennis shoes. So, he is in custody. They are watching him around the clock. I'm told that the guards are checking on him every 15 minutes or so -- Larry.

KING: Is it as it was purported to be in Thailand, is it a suicide watch, Dan?

SIMON: They have not characterized it as a suicide watch. They said they've received no information with respect that that might be an issue but they said that they are checking on him. And they're also keeping him away from the general population for his own safety -- Larry.

KING: Drew, he flew here in business class right?


KING: Were you in business class?

GRIFFIN: I was a couple of rows ahead of him.

KING: Who paid for him?

GRIFFIN: I guess the U.S. government paid for him. I didn't think he had the money. He was staying in Thailand in a $185 a month room, so I don't think he had enough money to pay for it.

KING: So, when they bring you back, the government brings you back in business class?

GRIFFIN: Well, that's what they brought him back. I think maybe lesser characters might not.

KING: Were there other journalists in business class?

GRIFFIN: Yes, there was about six or seven of us onboard the flight.

KING: Did you speak with him?

GRIFFIN: I tried to many times during the flight. At one point, I even passed a note. You know, he said in Thailand to another inmate supposedly, the inmate told us, "They got some of my story wrong. They're not telling the whole truth. I didn't do everything they said I did."

So, I sent him a note and said, "Look, here, if we got it wrong and you're not going to talk to me, at least write out what we got wrong." He wouldn't respond at all.

KING: All the big reports about drinking champagne, isn't that what they serve in business class?

GRIFFIN: You know...

KING: What was the big deal in that?

GRIFFIN: ...we're focusing so much. He was in a dumpy prison in Thailand that stunk, no air-conditioning, and now he's in the twin towers, which you know, Larry, is -- it's not a dump but it's not nice. So, we're focusing on this 15 minutes of luxury. Hey, they came down the rows with glasses of wine. I didn't see him take one but if he did that was about it.

KING: Can you describe his mood?

GRIFFIN: His demeanor he was focused solely on himself, chit- chatting with his neighbor, which was this big immigration officer. He spoke very briefly to them just, you know, just idle chit-chat. He wouldn't look or stare at anybody else on the plane.

KING: He was brought back under the custody of immigration officers?

GRIFFIN: Absolutely, one beside him. He was in two -- two seats. He was against the window, the immigration officer right next to him, another immigration officer in front of him along with the Boulder County district attorney. You probably know him. His name is Mr. Spray (ph). At all times, he was escorted when he went to the bathroom. He couldn't walk around the plane.

KING: Charlie, you've been on top of this story for so long and you'll be with us throughout the program tonight appearing at different times, what do you make of this?

BRENNAN: It's an intriguing situation in which we are to believe that Boulder District Attorney Mary Lacy has enough confidence to put herself way, way out there on this limb and bring him back in a very public fashion; however, at the same time, disclosing none of the physical evidence in the case, which she says, of course, she is ethically bound not to do. And she has no obligation to do so.

So, we are left with these sort of scattered reports of a -- of a confession, parts of which he has already tried to recant. And, of course, we've heard about the e-mail correspondence with Professor Tracey in which he's made incriminating remarks. That's all we have. We have nothing else to go on. We have to -- we're in a bit of a wait and see mode.

KING: Have they taken any physical evidence to your knowledge?

BRENNAN: There have been reports of them taking mouth swabs in Thailand. I have not confirmed that myself independently and I don't know myself that that is true. I'm not exactly sure why there would be a push to do that in Thailand as opposed to waiting until he's back in the U.S. and they could do it in a more controlled environment.

KING: Dan Simon, any indication of what he's going to plead tomorrow morning?

SIMON: Well, tomorrow is supposed to be a very simple, routine extradition hearing. It's a situation where they'll come in and verify that John Karr is indeed the person who is there in that courtroom.

If he decides to contest that, in other words contest his identity, then there would be a formal extradition hearing and this process could drag on a bit. We're not expecting that to occur.

We're expecting him to in essence waive extradition, which would then enable Boulder detectives to take him back to Colorado immediately. So, if he does waive and, again, we're expecting him to do that, he could be on his way as early as tomorrow afternoon -- Larry.

KING: Dan, who is his attorney?

SIMON: Well, no attorney has been appointed to him yet. There have been...

KING: Hold it Dan. Charlie says he knows. Charlie, you know?

BRENNAN: Yes, and the Rocky Mountain News will be reporting that there are two attorneys from the Bay Area who have been in contact with him. They spoke with him earlier today or at least one of those two attorneys did. I believe they expected to speak with him again later today.

KING: Who are they?

BRENNAN: I'm not going to name them right now but...

KING: Because the Rocky Mountain News...

BRENNAN: Because the Rocky Mountain News has the information. You'll have to go there but...

KING: Are these two prominent San Francisco attorneys?

BRENNAN: One of them has L.A. ties and their prominence is -- they're not extremely high profile lawyers. One of them does have L.A. ties and I think that at least one of them will be familiar to some local legal folks.

KING: They'll be with him tomorrow.

BRENNAN: That's my expectation, yes.

KING: Who is financing all this?

BRENNAN: That I can't tell you. I don't know. We shall see.

KING: Drew, you'll be leaving us. You've had a hectic day. You must be a little wiped out. Your overall impression of him is?

GRIFFIN: Very, very strange, odd mannerisms, vacuous look, beyond that I really don't know. He just seems like a real true loner.

KING: Thanks, Drew. Thanks, Dan. You'll be checking back with us, Charlie, throughout the show.

When we come back we'll learn JonBenet's father's perspective from his long-time attorney Lin Wood in his exclusive first interview since the arrest of John Mark Karr, all that when LARRY KING LIVE continues.


KING: We now welcome to LARRY KING LIVE from Atlanta, Lin Wood, the attorney for the Ramsey family. He's been highly successful in representing them and others in many cases. What has been John's reaction to all this, Lin?

LIN WOOD, RAMSEY FAMILY ATTORNEY: Well, good evening, Larry.

John Ramsey wants what Mary Lacy, the district attorney in Boulder wants, what I think many millions of Americans want. He wants the person who brutally murdered his daughter to be brought to justice. He does not know whether Mr. Karr is guilty of that crime. He does not know the evidence upon which the district attorney is relying on making the arrest of Mr. Karr.

I think his reaction can be summed up as -- as being one of hope. He has held the belief since December of 2002, when Mary Lacy took over the jurisdiction of this case that she held out real promise for solving the crime. Don't know whether it's been solved yet. Only time will tell.

John wants the public to be patient, not to rush to judgment, and not to engage in the type of speculation and rumor and gossip and hearsay against this man that unfortunately people engaged in with respect to him and his wife and tragically even at times his son.

KING: Since he is, Lin, though a victim in this, isn't he entitled to some information from the prosecutor?

WOOD: He is entitled to information from the prosecutor. And, I will tell you that he has been periodically informed by the district attorney's office over the years since 2002 about the status of the case. Patsy was informed during her lifetime. And, Mary Lacy called John around ten o'clock in the morning last Wednesday and informed him that an arrest had, in fact, been made.

But I'll tell you one other thing about John Ramsey being a victim. Since the time of this event last week, John Ramsey has literally at times been a prisoner in his home because of the reporters and the cameras and the satellite trucks out in front of his home in Michigan. He had to sneak out and to take his son back to school last Friday. And then when he got to the college all of a sudden the reporters and the cameramen are stalking both John and his son Burke and that makes him a victim again of what I think is a media circus and a media frenzy at a time when his privacy should be respected, at a time when he's still trying to deal with the death of his wife and, Burke Ramsey, a young man is trying to deal with the death of his mother.

KING: Was Patsy told something before she died that there were leads or they were working close?

WOOD: Well, as you know, I have refrained from making any comment about the substance of what I might know or what the Ramseys might know about this individual.

But, I did see a report last week that falsely stated that Patsy had received e-mails directly from Mr. Karr and that she had turned those e-mails over to the authorities in Boulder. I felt an obligation to correct that misimpression because I didn't want someone to think that Patsy instigated in any way the investigation of Mr. Karr.

Last May, the Boulder authorities did give information to John and Patsy that they had developed about what they considered to be a very promising lead. They asked John and Patsy if they would cooperate in any effort to identify the individual and to complete the investigation and John and Patsy quickly said yes. They pledged their 100 percent cooperation as they always have to District Attorney Lacy.

KING: We have an e-mail question for you, Lin, from Samantha of Lincolnton, North Carolina. "Mr. Wood, what does the Ramsey family think about the treatment that John Mark Karr is getting thus far? For example, the wine, beer, pate, warm towels, blanket, business class window seat, silk shirt, et cetera?"

WOOD: You know, I think John Ramsey, and I haven't asked him that specific question but I -- but I feel fairly confident from the discussions we've had over the last several days that John's reaction to that information would be similar to mine.

I don't think John is concerned about such matters. I think John Ramsey, as I and I think many other objective Americans, I think what we would like to know is where Mr. Karr was in December of 1996. And we'd like to know the evidence that links him somehow to this crime that has resulted in his arrest.

But, John Ramsey is not going to rush out and try to speculate on those answers. John is going to wait and let the system of law progress in an orderly fashion and let that evidence be presented by the Boulder district attorney in a court of law and not have this gentleman tried in the court of public opinion.

I do think, and I will add this from my own perspective, John Ramsey and I both have said that we give this man the presumption of innocence. He's entitled to it. Sadly for too many years it wasn't given to my clients. It wasn't given to John Ramsey.

But what I saw on the cameras with respect to Mr. Karr certainly would have been a tragedy of justice had it occurred in the United States of America. We don't parade people in front of cameras and I think it's sad about what happened to this man, even though -- even though he is in some fashion apparently linked through some information to the JonBenet Ramsey case. It still should not be done even to him.

KING: As a lawyer, Lin, isn't DNA going to make it obvious one way or the other?

WOOD: I don't know that it's 100 percent conclusive, Larry, but I have always believed and I believe that District Attorney Lacy concurs that this is, in fact, in large part a DNA case.

There's been a lot of speculation. I know that a lot of people reference Dr. Henry Lee talking about the DNA not being of good quality. Dr. Lee was not involved in the investigation in 1999 when a second spot of blood found in JonBenet's underwear was tested.

And from that blood spot a DNA sample was extracted that was tested. It was consistent with other DNA that had been found on her body and it was of such quality that Mary Lacy was able to get it certified in late 2003 and entered into the FBI national database.

So, there is strong DNA evidence in this case. It's not Ramsey DNA. I believe it's the DNA of the killer. It remains to be seen what information we'll learn with respect to Mr. Karr or any other individual regarding the DNA. We just know it's not the DNA of the Ramseys.

KING: Thanks, Lin. Lin Wood will be back with us in a little while.

Up next, the first interview with the man who went to authorities after spending four years trading e-mails with JonBenet murder suspect John Mark Karr. That's next when LARRY KING LIVE returns.


KING: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE.

And welcome to our program a return visit with Michael Tracey, the University of Colorado journalism professor, producer of three documentaries on the JonBenet Ramsey case and the media coverage of it; had a four-year e-mail correspondence with the man he learned last week is John Mark Karr. Professor Tracey has been on this program earlier before and it's good to have him back.

You've been a long time observer of this and its coverage. How did this e-mail thing start?

PROFESSOR MICHAEL TRACEY, E-MAILED WITH PERSON BELIEVED TO BE JOHN KARR: Well, Larry, you know and I told your producers that I'm not going to talk directly about Mr. Karr or the e-mails, the contents and so on.

It's publicly known now that the correspondence began about four years ago and it was initiated after a friend of mine, Mike (INAUDIBLE), who had a little press for himself the other day, met the person who turned out to be Mr. Karr in Paris.

But, above and beyond that, I really don't want to say anything about Mr. Karr or the e-mails and for a very specific reason. And, I was listening to Lin and John Ramsey. You know, he really does have a right to be presumed innocent.

There's a kind of curious kind of art to this that we have a situation where John Ramsey himself is sort of saying he deserves to be presumed innocent. And John Ramsey more than any other person on the planet knows what it's like to be presumed guilty because the Ramseys from the get-go from the very, very beginning, almost the first, second day after she was killed basically they -- they were the only objects of suspicion. And I think and that was wrong and it would be wrong to do the same thing to Mr. Karr.

KING: Without presuming it and this program has never presumed guilt ever.

TRACEY: I know, which is why I'm here by the way.

KING: Never presumed guilt. I believe in what the Constitution -- I believe in the presumption of innocence. Anybody is innocent until they're proven guilty, maybe until the appeal is heard even if they've been found guilty.

Why did you wait so long to turn whatever information you had over to authorities?

TRACEY: Well...

KING: I'm not asking you what he said.

TRACEY: ...again, I'm not going to discuss when I specifically informed law enforcement. It's been made public that something occurred in May that led to a series of actions essentially that led to the investigation. But I want to say something. You know, you said that people believe in the presumption of innocence.

KING: I do.

TRACEY: You do. I understand that and that's why I agreed to come on. But I was watching the Paula Zahn show before and I was listening to Wendy Murphy and she was saying the most outrageous things about this case. She was saying that John asphyxiated JonBenet. Give us the evidence Wendy.

She was saying a lot about the kiddy porn that Karr was somehow involved because he was peddling kiddy porn maybe of JonBenet and this was real high end. I mean this was -- this was exactly what -- the Zahn show before your show was exactly how it shouldn't be. And, for me to -- I was appalled. I mean I was appalled by all the (INAUDIBLE).

KING: Are you shocked at all this?

TRACEY: No, I'm not surprised and that kind of worries me the very fact that it's a zoo, it's a circus. And I'll tell you something paradoxical. It's become an iconic story.

The (INAUDIBLE) twelve murdered in America in the same year that JonBenet was murdered. You heard of one. It had all the classic tabloid vibes. It had sex. It has violence. It had the pageant videos and so on.

But what troubles me and what I refuse to do in relation to Mr. Karr in terms of talking about him, talking about our exchanges, talking about the e-mails, and again it's been made public there are hundreds and what I refuse to do is to engage that because to do that would be to -- would be for me to take part in doing something to him that was done to John and Patsy, who I happen to believe by the way are utterly innocent of hurting the child.

KING: You've always thought that.

TRACEY: I've always -- well not always but for a long time now.

KING: All right then in fairness to him and his presumption of innocence how would you characterize him? Everyone is interested in him as a human being. He's become a subject of this. You've e-mailed with him. What do you make of him?

TRACEY: Good try, Larry. I really...

KING: I'm not asking about whether he killed (INAUDIBLE). Who is he?

TRACYE: No, no because, you know what, then I'm talking about his character and my sense of it. That's not my role anymore. It's no longer my problem. I will say, you know, clearly it will emerge at some point and my own sense of this will also emerge.

It is now -- we really have to back off. I know it's not going to happen. But the proper thing to do would be for the media, the culture, the society to back off to not obsess on this and to give Mr. Karr his day in court if it goes that far and to let the judicial process take its path and either he'll be found guilty or he'll be found innocent.

But the system has to be allowed to work. I'm utterly convinced that when the full story is told and watching the media coverage it's clear, I mean it's amazing how much television people can make on so little. I mean they're fixated on it.

That press conference in Thailand was outrageous, I agree, I mean utterly, utterly outrageous. It should never have happened. He should never have been allowed to talk in the way he was talking. Someone should have said "Shut up." He has rights.

KING: I'm sure his lawyers will tell him to be quiet.

TRACEY: Well, I mean I'm sure Mark Spray who was the gentleman whispering into his ear actually was probably saying "You might want to shut up." So, I'm going to say nothing about this. What I will say is I think when the full story is told whatever the results it will be quite clear that Mary Lacy took an extraordinarily courageous decision and Tom Bennett (ph)...

KING: In arresting him?

TRACEY: In initiating the investigation and John Bennett undertook an investigation with extraordinary skill and professionalism that -- and I'm saying that whatever happens, whether guilt or innocent. But Mr. Karr himself for me is off the table because it would be wrong. It would be doing to him what was done to John Ramsey.

KING: Except because since he has become a person of interest...


KING: can tell us certainly do you like him? What do you think of him? That's got nothing to do with murder.

TRACEY: I'm not going to express any view on whether I like him or not or what I think about him or what my sense because that's not my role. I mean I'd be -- this really happened because I'm interested in the whole Internet culture but clearly it went beyond that. But I'm simply...

KING: Do you think he's going to get a fair trial if he's tried?

TRACEY: I hope so but the problem -- the problem is that, I mean I saw the cover of the New York Post. I think it was the photo of him in this -- in this -- in the business class seat and it said "Snake on the Plane." That is, I mean you know that is simply in human terms, in constitutional terms, it is wrong.

And I don't know why -- why we as a society both fixate on these kinds of cases and then feel that in order to sell papers, in order to sell -- to put ratings on -- on programs that we feel totally willy- nilly.

We can trash people's rights. We can trash their character. We can trash who they are. It's like a game. It's like a sport, like a blood sport. And I think that's wrong. That is not how the system is supposed to be.

KING: We're going to spend a few more minutes with Michael Tracey.

When we come back, the other people who e-mailed Michael Tracey about the JonBenet case did any of them try to confess to the murder? We'll find out coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) KING: We're back with Michael Tracey, the University of Colorado journalism professor. By the way, the e-mail address that tracked down John Mark Karr in Thailand was December 25th, 1996 at, the date of her murder. Isn't that a little odd?

TRACEY: I have no comment on that.

KING: Is that the e-mail address?

TRACEY: I have no comment on that.

KING: We have a couple of e-mails for you. How did Professor Tracey -- this is from Renee in Bradenton, Florida. How did Professor Tracey lure Karr into continuing an online relationship? That's a fair question. As a journalist, you will tell.

TRACEY: Lure is a very strong word.

KING: You would tell your journalism students in this position, ask that question. How?

TRACEY: I think that's a legitimate -- get a different profession. I'm not going to going to comment on how I dealt with him. As you know...

KING: ... All right, who sent the first word?

TRACEY: The first contact was through him and that was way back.

KING: You to him?

TRACEY: No, the other way around.

KING: Him to you.

TRACEY: But I'm not going to say anything about how I dealt with him. Lure is a very curious word to use in the context. But no, I'm not going to comment.

KING: It was the e-mailer's word.


KING: Nora in Westchester, Pennsylvania. "From what I read John Mark Karr sent lots of rather suspicious e-mails for quite some time, e-mails that should have at least raised suspicion that he was -- something wrong, a child predator if not the suspect in the Ramsey case. Why didn't Tracey report these to police earlier?" Why didn't you report it to police earlier? What was the motivation in waiting?

TRACEY: Again, it's this question of drawing me into talking about his e-mails and what he -- I'm just not going to do that. He -- here's the problem I have. These people -- I know they're well meaning and I know people are fascinated by this case. And it has become a sort of iconic crime, of the most famous crime of the 20th century, possibly. And they want me to be here now and start to talk about a set of exchanges that are now part of a case, a capital case -- this is a death penalty case if ever there was. I don't believe in the death penalty, but it clearly is.

And so what they want me to do is to talk on -- with you, famous program about details in relation to someone who is facing possibly, possibly the death penalty. And that seems to be wrong. You were saying in the break something I thought is extremely interesting. I think you need to be recolonized. I think you need to adopt more British law. Because a lot of what happens...

KING: ... In Britain we couldn't comment.

TRACEY: In Britain the ability of the media to do the things they do would simply -- is much, much more restricted. And I think that's proper. Because if we abandon the idea that entertainment values, public obsession, public curiosity is more important than a very fundamental constitutional right to be presumed innocent, we have a very, very serious problem.

We have a misdirection of priorities. Simply fundamentally in human terms, in legal terms, in constitutional terms, it is fundamentally wrong. And I won't go there.

KING: But why does it prevent you from saying something nice? Why would that...

TRACEY: ... Because I'm...

KING: How in the world would that harm him?

TRACEY: Because Larry, because for example, you asked me what I thought of him, what my impression was. But I'm being an absolutist on this and I'm being an absolutist because I saw what happened to the Ramseys, and I refuse -- I mean, you know, I spent the past 10 years first critiquing the media coverage of this case and secondly trying to make the case that it seems to me the evidence overwhelmingly points at an intruder and away from John and Patsy. And of that, I'm utterly, 100 percent, totally convinced now. And I don't want to use what is clearly information I have to do anything to harm the process or to harm Mr. Karr. I would be doing what Wendy Murphy did in the Paula Zahn program.

KING: But you have cooperated with the authorities.

TRACEY: I went to the authorities, yes. That's publicly known, sure.

KING: Thanks, Michael.

TRACEY: Thank you.

KING: Michael Tracey, University of Colorado journalism professor. Up next, reaction to Professor Tracey and more on the meeting that might have been between John Mark Karr and JonBenet's late mother with our exclusive guest, the Ramseys' attorney, Lin Wood. We'll be right back. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

QUESTION: What happened?

KARR: Her death was an accident.

QUESTION: Can you tell us about your connection to the Ramsey family?

KARR: No comment.

QUESTION: How did you get into the basement?

KARR: No comment on that.



KING: : We're back, and Lin Wood rejoins us. What do you make of our friend, Professor Casey (sic)?

WOOD: Well, I want to comment about one thing that Professor Tracey...

KING: ... Tracey, I'm sorry.

WOOD: Sure. I saw the Paula Zahn show, and I heard what former prosecutor Wendy Murphy said about John Ramsey. It was disgusting. It was obscene. It was false. She apparently has no sense of dignity, no sense of humanity for John Ramsey or for his son, Burke, who has to live with the knowledge that friends of his hear these kinds of false accusations against his dad. And she has no sense of the evidence in this case, either, Larry, because a grand jury looked at the evidence for 18 months and did not indict any member of this family.

And in April of 2003, district attorney Lacy made a public statement that the evidence in this case was that an intruder murdered JonBenet. And so to former prosecutor Murphy, I would tell her don't make these accusations against my client or your title will change to defendant Murphy. This is not open season on the Ramsey family to discuss this case and in the process to once again make false accusations of murder against them.

KING: You've successfully sued on behalf of them before. Are you saying you might sue here?

WOOD: I'm saying very clearly that this is not open season on John Ramsey or his son, Burke. And I will not in the future tolerate, as I have not in the past, tolerated false accusations of murder being made against this family.

KING: It's been reported that John Mark Karr tried to contact Patsy. Do you have any knowledge of such an effort? WOOD: Well, I alluded to it in the first segment when I was referencing the fact that the authorities came out in May and spoke to John and Patsy. And there was, at that time, an indication that he may want to contact Patsy, either to meet her or to speak with her by telephone. She was asked that if it would advance the investigation would she cooperate, would she be willing to do so? And she indicated that she would be.

You have to see and know one thing, Larry, John Ramsey and Patsy Ramsey and I, since 2002, have great confidence in the integrity and the professionalism of district attorney Mary Lacey and the members of her staff. You know, when Charlie Brennan comes back on, ask him about Mary Lacey's reputation as a prosecutor...

KING: You'll be with him.

WOOD: Well, great. And he will tell you that anyone in Colorado that knows Mary Lacey knows that she is a consummate professional. That's why there have been no leaks in this case. And that's why she would not discuss any of the evidence in this case publicly.

And the people that she's surrounded herself with -- Tom Bennett, her chief investigator, he in fact has impeccable credentials, one of the best homicide investigators in that part of the country if not the nation.

I don't know what information is contained in the arrest affidavit against Mr. Karr, but I do believe in the integrity and professionalism of the district attorney's office so that whatever they have moved on, whatever is the basis of their decision, I believe that at the end of the day it will be done for a legitimate law enforcement purpose. Whether that ultimately is to prosecute Mr. Karr or not, I know these people and I know that they are after a child killer and they are not after some publicity or headline in this case.

KING: And by the way, Patsy Ramsey died of ovarian cancer on June 24th. A foundation has been established in her memory. If you want more information on that, it's the PatsyRamseyFoundation, all one word, The web site includes artwork that Patsy created in the final months of her life. She was quite good with a brush, was she not?

WOOD: She was a painter and -- a beginning painter, but very creative. She was a talented person. And I know that everyone that knowed her -- that knew her and loved her, we all miss her very much.

KING: All right. What do you make overall of what Professor Tracey had to say? His position that we should not be discussing this at all.

WOOD: Well, look, I don't think we ought to decide issues of guilt or innocence in the court of public opinion. I think that we ought to respect our justice system and we ought to make those kinds of decisions and come to those conclusions in a court of law.

Inevitably it's going to be discussed. I've watched up close and personal for the last ten years the media accusations and public discussions, accusations against my clients, from Richard Jewell to John and Patsy Ramsey to the attack on the reputation of a young girl in the Kobe Bryant case.

I don't think it's going to change. John Ramsey and I discussed just yesterday the fact that it's been ten years since JonBenet's murder and the media coverage now is significantly more sensational, significantly worse in terms of its willingness to speculate and bottom feed, than it was ten years ago. So no lesson has been learned in the last ten years, If Anything, things have deteriorated with respect to how the media covers these types of high-profile cases.

KING: He'll be back with us -- and it's always good to have Lin Wood with us. And straight ahead, we'll try to go inside John Mark Karr's mind with a forensic psychiatrist and the Colorado reporter on top of this case from the get-go, when LARRY KING LIVE returns.


KING: Before we meet Dr. Keith Ablow and Charlie Brennan returns, let's head to Anderson Cooper. He'll host AC 360. What's up at the top of the hour, Anderson?

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Larry, tonight we're going in depth on the JonBenet/John Karr mystery. No shouting attorneys, just facts and evidence. We'll also look back on what happened the night JonBenet was murdered, what the inside of her house actually looked like, why there was so little blood at the scene and whether any of this points to John Karr.

We'll also look at the DNA evidence that may prove the lynchpin in the case, how it's actually tested and when the test results will be back. In-depth reporting tonight at the top of the hour, Larry.

KING: Thanks. "ANDERSON COOPER 360" at the top of the hour for two hours, immediately following this program.

New York, Dr. Keith Ablow joins us. He's a forensic psychiatrist, host of his own show "The Dr. Keith Ablow Show," which by the way debuts next month.

And back with us in Los Angeles, Charlie Brennan of the "Rocky Mountain News" has covered this from the get ge.

Dr. Ablow, do you have assessment based on sketchy information of John Mark Karr?

DR. KEITH ABLOW, FORENSIC PSYCHIATRIST: Well, I do have an assessment based on sketchy information. One thing that should be noted is that this man tells us something about his psychological mindset by telling us that he is essentially stunted at an adolescent level. He says he can appreciate people like Michael Jackson and the way in which they feel contemporaries of young people. He lost his mother, after all, at age 12 to a tragic car accident. He was then sent to live with his grandparents. I think emotionally we might wonder whether he stopped developing at that time, emotionally. That doesn't excuse the fact that he cavorts with young girls. But it does explain why he might say he doesn't belong to this world.

KING: But it does not make him a killer.

ABLOW: Well, it does not necessarily make him a killer by any means. And in fact, many pedophiles are fairly restricted in terms of what they find appealing. So the fact that he married a 13-year-old, then married a 16-year-old and is said to have romanced a 10-year-old may mean that a 6-year-old is outside sort of the constraints of his affections sexually.

He may have affection for her. He may feel tied to her. But we also need to know whether he is delusionally tied to her. In other words, when would he tell us is the last time he spoke to this girl? Was it in fact before her death or after?

KING: What about Professor Tracey's point, Charlie Brennan, that none of this is relevant until evidence is presented and a trial is held?

BRENNAN: Well, that's absolutely correct. However, with -- an interesting thing that we find with Karr is there is every -- there are many different signs that he has tried -- he's tried many different ways to inject himself into this case...

KING: He himself?

BRENNAN: Mr. Karr has. And "The Rocky Mountain News" on Saturday broke the story as to how he actually crossed paths with Professor Tracey. And that was he met a mutual friend of Tracey's while over in France. And when he found out that this gentleman Mike Sandrock is his name, knew Michael Tracey, Karr's reaction was, Professor Michael Tracey? You know Professor Tracey? And he was all excited that he found somebody who knew Professor Tracey because he'd seen some of the professor's documentaries and he was -- this gentleman, Mr. Sandrock describes Karr as being well versed in many of the different articles that have appeared. He knew many different landmarks...

KING: Could, Dr. Ablow, could he be fantasizing this?

ABLOW: Well, absolutely. A full mental status examination has to be conducted. Because I can tell you, I've treated patients and given forensic testimony in cases in which somebody seems to be one thing and when you get into their real psychiatric history and their real mental state they are in fact lost in a delusional construct.

So I think it's very important for them to define everything, from when he says he saw this girl last to whether he feels they're still connected, to whether he could have been saying that he's with her spiritually at the crime scene rather than physically. So everything has to be defined.

KING: What do you make of all of this, Charlie? The curiouser it gets, the curiouser it gets.

BRENNAN: Well, indeed. I think I remember you saying similar things about ten years ago. There's something that we really need to remember, and that is that, and in this has sort of been one of my mantra from the beginning on this, is there is always so much that we don't know. And the most important thing we don't know right now is what is contained in the sealed affidavit in this case.

Mary Lacy didn't do this all by herself. She persuaded a judge in Boulder County to put his or her signature to this arrest affidavit. These are very serious-minded, very cautious, careful men who were standing with her up on the podium that day when she did the press conference in Boulder last Thursday. They would not be standing there based on the strength of nothing more than a somewhat shaky confession.

KING: Will we know more about the affidavit tomorrow?

BRENNAN: No, absolutely not. Tomorrow is solely a procedural step in getting him back to Boulder sooner or later. We're not going to know the contents of that affidavit at least until such time as charges are filed. And that could be days or even, well, at least several days away.

KING: Dr. Ablow, is this going to turn into a classic psychiatric study?

ABLOW: Well, I think this is going to be a classic psychiatric study for a number of reasons. Number one, you have somebody who clearly is attracted to age-inappropriate females, apparently. And he's willing to talk about it. You also have somebody who either has given a false confession, which is an interesting psychological phenomenon, or he is in fact a killer of a 6-year-old beauty queen, which is a tragic, but also instructive study to look at. And so I think that his injecting himself in the media, while it's unfortunate on the one hand, it can certainly be a teaching lesson on the other hand. And I don't think he's going away. So we might as well learn what we can.

KING: Thanks, dr. Ablow. Dr. Keith Ablow.

ABLOW: My pleasure Larry, thanks.

KING: We'll have you back. When we return, Lin Wood, the long- time lawyer for JonBenet's parents, along with Charlie Brennan, return with some final thoughts. And a look ahead. Don't go away.


KING: Lin Wood, the attorney for the Ramsey family, returns. Charlie Brennan remains. By the way, Charlie, do we know if the e- mail address that he used was the date of her death?

BRENNAN: Well, I believe he had several different addresses he was using and my information is that that may well have been one of them. We have a big team on this story at the paper and there are a couple of guys, Kevin Vaughn (ph) and Todd Hartman (ph) who have been doing great work on that. They're a little bit better versed on that than I am.

KING: The paper tomorrow morning will name the two lawyers though, that he will have representing him?

BRENNAN: Yes, it will.

KING: Lin Wood, is John Ramsey kind of in between a rock and a hard place in that he wants the killer found, he wants this closed and he also wants the presumption of innocence, which so was important to him?

WOOD: I don't think those two things are inconsistent. What I think John Ramsey wants is the same thing I said when I started my comments on your show tonight, Larry. He wants the killer of his daughter brought to justice. I believe that professional investigators and prosecutors are on the case. Whether or not Mr. Karr ultimately is found under the evidence, in a court of law to be involved or not, whether the charges are sustained or whether they're dismissed, the goal here has got to be to remain focused on finding the killer of this child.

We know it was not John or Patsy Ramsey or their son, Burke. We know that it was an intruder. If not Mr. Karr, it doesn't mean it was the Ramseys. It simply means that the investigation and the search for this brutal child killer must continue. But we've got to have patience. We've got to have trust in our system of justice. And we've got to show some restraint in the wild speculation that consumes the case at the present moment. The fascination of the public is certainly there. But at some point it cannot continue to dominate our every news cycle the way it has in the last several days.

KING: Charlie, if he waives extradition, how quickly could he be in Colorado?

BRENNAN: My understanding is it would be possible that he could even be back there tomorrow night. If he waives, I think Boulder could move to get him back very quickly. I'd be surprise if they did it by commercial aircraft. I'd be surprised to see any more champagne or fried prawn. I think it might be done very covertly, if you will, perhaps on a plane leased or owned by the Boulder Sheriff's Department. I don't think we're going to see him in business class on his trip to Boulder.

KING: We only have 30 seconds. What do you think about the way John Ramsey, Lin Wood, and the others on that side have handled themselves?

BRENNAN: Well, I think they've handled themselves in outstanding fashion. It's absolutely right that the presumption of justice has to be there and

KING: Innocence, you mean.

BRENNAN: I'm sorry. Thank you very much. The presumption of innocence. It has to be there for everybody. It has to be honored for everybody. And you know, that's one thing that Michael Tracey and John Ramsey and Lin Wood and I and I think, I would hope most people would be unanimous on.

KING: Yes. There's a lot of people that still think he didn't do it, right? When you talk to them on the street, they think it's just cuckooville.

BRENNAN: I haven't found one person in the last four days that sees him as a viable suspect. But those are all people, including myself, who don't know what's in the arrest affidavit. There's a lot we don't know, Larry.

KING: Thanks very much, Charlie. Thank you, Lin Wood, as always. Before we go, a reminder. We've got a very special show this Wednesday night at a special time, 8:00 p.m. Eastern. An intense, emotional hour with superstar singer Sheryl Crow. Her first prime time interview since her breast cancer diagnosis and her break-up with cycling champion and cancer survivor Lance Armstrong. Here's a little preview.


SHERYL CROW, SINGER: He was, you know, one of the first few people I spoke to about it, and clearly it was a complicated situation, in that the one person I would love to have gone to was the person who knows more about cancer than probably anybody that I know. But there was a big conflict there for me, and I was at a point in my life where I really needed to have the people around me who could really be there unconditionally.


KING: Don't miss this. Sheryl Crow, this Wednesday, a special hour, special time, 8:00 p.m. Eastern. And last but not least, a belated happy birthday to America's 42nd president, Bill Clinton, a frequent guest on this program, who turns 60 on Saturday. Mr. President, many happy returns on the day and we look forward to your next visit to LARRY KING LIVE.

"ANDERSON COOPER 360" is next, Anderson.


© 2007 Cable News Network.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us. Site Map.
Offsite Icon External sites open in new window; not endorsed by
Pipeline Icon Pay service with live and archived video. Learn more
Radio News Icon Download audio news  |  RSS Feed Add RSS headlines