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Toxicology Report for Benoit Murder-Suicide Released
Aired July 17, 2007 - 20:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PAT LALAMA, GUEST HOST: Tonight, breaking news. Toxicology reports are out in the case of superstar WWE wrestler 40-year-old Chris Benoit and his family, found dead inside in their upscale home in the Atlanta suburbs. Headlines tonight. The anabolic steroid testosterone found in the body of Chris Benoit, the entire family testing positive for a mix of prescription drugs. And tonight, stunning developments. The toxicology reports reveal 7-year-old Daniel Benoit sedated with an anti-anxiety drug for adults at the time of his death, a total of three different drugs, including Xanax, found in the body of Nancy Benoit, plus an elevated blood alcohol level.
But did steroids actually play a role in the crime? The chief medical examiner says there is no way to really know, but other medical experts say there is a connection between steroids and rage. And tonight: What influence will these reports have on the federal investigation of the doctor to the wrestling stars, Dr. Phil Astin III?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We analyzed the urine of Chris Benoit for the presence of steroids. He had been using testosterone at least within some reasonably short period of time prior to the time that he died. Nancy Benoit, we found three different drugs in her system. The first was hydrocodone. We also found hydromorphone. And finally, we found the drug called Xanax, or Alprazolam, in Daniel Benoit, the 7-year-old child. We found his blood to be positive for Alprazolam, or Xanax. Xanax is not a drug that would normally be given to a child for any, I would say, routine purposes. Based upon this finding and the autopsy findings, it is our opinion that Daniel Benoit was sedated by Xanax at the time that he was murdered.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LALAMA: Good evening. I`m Pat Lalama, in for Nancy Grace. And tonight, toxicology reports released in the case of WWE wrestling star Chris Benoit and his family, found dead in the suburbs of Atlanta. Many questions tonight in the wake of these findings.
And the first person I want to go out to, Dave Meltzer, Wrestlingobserver.com, a wrestling expert. What do you make of today`s findings?
DAVE MELTZER, WRESTLINGOBSERVER.COM: You know, I mean, going in, I never thought that we were going to learn anything from the toxicology reports, and now that we have them, I don`t think that we`ve learned anything. What`s going to happen is, is everyone`s going to try to spin their side of the story.
If you believe in `roid rage, which by the way, I do not believe was the reason for the deaths, you`ve been given the evidence. He had a lot of steroids, a pretty quantity of testosterone in him. So therefore, you can believe it was `roid rage. If you don`t believe in `roid rage, you still don`t have to believe in `roid rage because there`s no conclusive proof that `roid rage had anything to do with it, so...
LALAMA: Yes, it seems like it really kept all of us hanging, don`t you agree, Bryan Alvarez? I mean, not a lot of revelation here.
BRYAN ALVAREZ, FIGUREFOURONLINE.COM: Yes, I wasn`t really surprised by anything that came out today. I mean, he`d been prescribed testosterone. It was determined that he was on testosterone. I guess, if anything, I was somewhat surprised that he didn`t have any street drugs in him. But I mean, as far as -- the only other real revelation was the fact that the child had been given Xanax...
ALVAREZ: ... so that Daniel was sedated before he`d been killed.
LALAMA: Oh! It`s so amazingly sad. We`re going to get to our pro wrestlers in a minute. But first, Dr. William Morrone, the thing that you can do for all of us is explain really what this means. I think a lot of people are confused. I mean, a doctor can write a testosterone prescription if there`s a medical necessity, am I right?
DR. WILLIAM MORRONE, MEDICAL EXAMINER/FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST: It is for hormone replacement. Hormone replacement means different things to different people. We hope that we don`t concentrate on the performance- enhancing aspects of this.
But let me emphasize that this is a vial of single-use injectables like steroids. When I give this to people for hormone replacement, they get it once a month, maybe twice a month if they had testicular cancer and they had tissue removed. But the prescribing physician dispensed a million of these in two years. So the link to possible overprescribing and abuse is there, and it`s linked with the knowledge that Chris was in pain.
LALAMA: You know what? I want to talk to Marc Mero, former WWE. Marc, let me just ask you, it`s sort of a yin and a yang. I mean, my opinion is that by taking steroids, you actually, let`s say, lose a lot of your testicular efficiency, so then they give you the testosterone to get it back. I mean, it`s kind of crazy. Do I have it right?
MARC MERO, FORMER WWE WRESTLER: Well, yes, I believe so. But the problem is, he was given so much. I mean, a 10-month supply every three or four weeks. And my question is, is how does he go -- he was given this for a year from this Dr. Astin. How does he go through wrestling with the WWE undetected for one year?
MERO: That is my question.
LALAMA: Well, OK. And you know, that begs the question, why don`t we know more about those tests, which we`ll get to momentarily. Carlos Ashenoff, another WWE star of the past, what`s your take on today`s revelations?
CARLOS ASHENOFF, PRO WRESTLER: Well, you know, the WWE`s always defended themselves by saying that he had passed the test, his last, you know, steroid test, and that he was clean. But that`s almost a moot point because, as we now know, you can get a prescription and have steroids in your system, so that`s how they circumvent their own system so they`re not culpable of anything.
LALAMA: Yes, very interesting. Scott Ballard, we`re very, very honored to have you with us tonight, the Fayette County district attorney. This is your case. It`s your baby. These revelations tonight don`t really help you much, do they.
SCOTT BALLARD, FAYETTE COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Well, it`s just another piece in the puzzle. We`ve got crime scene evidence. We`ve got witnesses that we`ve talked with. Now we know what was inside the bodies of the three people who were found in the home. So you put it all together, and it helps clarify, to some extent, what happened.
LALAMA: Let`s hear for a minute from the actual medical examiner who spoke today.
BALLARD: I`m sorry, what`s the question?
LALAMA: We`re going to hear a sound bite.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We analyzed the urine of Chris Benoit for the presence of steroids, and the only steroid drug that we found was testosterone. This was measured at a level of 207 micrograms per liter. Now, along with other analyses that were done of the urine, we were able to ascertain that this level of testosterone indicates that he had been using testosterone at least within some reasonably short period of time prior to the time that he died. Depending on how it was that it was injected and the form that it was used, this would produce this level in the urine.
Daniel Benoit, the 7-year-old child, we found his blood to be positive for Alprazolam, or Xanax, at 110 micrograms per liter. This is relatively elevated. And also, Xanax is not a drug that would normally be given to a child for any, I would say, routine purposes. Based upon this finding and the autopsy findings, it is our opinion that Daniel Benoit was sedated by Xanax at the time that he was murdered.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LALAMA: Scott, what does this mean to you? I mean, for your case, what do you do with this information? And when do you finally just close the books and say, There`s no more we can do with this?
BALLARD: Well, we`ve still got some more people we want to talk to. We`ve requested DNA tests, and it doesn`t look like the GBI crime lab is going to be able to do that. We may decide to do that with a private lab. That might help further discount the possibility of another person`s involvement in the case. As much as anything, it helps us understand a little bit better what happened that night. Now we know that the 7-year- old child was sedated. The questions remain as to why he was sedated.
LALAMA: Scott, is motive important to you? I mean, does it really matter if you`re able to come to the public and say, This is now how we know what happened and why it happened?
BALLARD: You would always like to know why something happened, but I don`t think we`re ever going to understand why somebody would kill a 7- year-old boy.
LALAMA: Well, you know what? We have a lot of people, a lot of viewers interested and want to ask questions. And Natasha is one of them, from Delaware. Are you with us, Natasha?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
LALAMA: What have you got for us?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, my question is, is, now that they know that he had tested positive for steroids, what happens with the WWE? Because they said he had passed in April.
LALAMA: Well, you know what? We`re going to be fortunate enough to actually be able to speak to some people from the WWE in a couple of minutes. First, let`s go to our former wrestlers. Marc, what do you think?
MERO: As far as what?
LALAMA: Well, what`s going to happen now? I mean, Natasha is wondering what about the WWE?
MERO: It`s a great question. And I asked the WWE the same thing. How many tests has Chris really had, and how many has he passed? They said he passed one a couple of months ago. But what is included in passing test? Now, I understand you could have a T-E ratio of 10-to-1 and then be retested and pass the test, or bring a note from your doctor and pass the test. What kind of testing is this? Where is the wellness program? Who is taking care of these guys?
LALAMA: Carlos, let me ask you. I mean, do you see it as the WWE picks and chooses what it wants to reveal? First they say it`s a family privacy, we can`t go there, but then they talk about possible problems with the children and fighting between the couple. I mean, how does it work for you?
ASHENOFF: Well, they`re never going to take any responsibility because they don`t want to look bad. When I originally (ph) came on this program, you know, this isn`t (ph) an indictment of the WWE. This, as far as I`m concerned, is I want people to understand what`s going on in our industry. Whistleblowers are never popular, and I just want people to understand that there`s a recreational drug problem, a steroid problem, a pain pill problem, and you`ve got a lot of people under a lot of mental duress. They cultivate and foster a system where you have to be on steroids to make the most money, and that has to stop.
LALAMA: Well, you know what? We are actually honored to have Jerry McDevitt and David Black. Jerry McDevitt, you are the attorney for the WWE, a very, very famous face lately, I must say. And David Black, and you`re with Aegis Sciences Corporate. You do the, I understand, independent outside testing.
Everybody wants to know -- and let`s start with you, Jerry. Why don`t you tell us about those first three tests?
JERRY MCDEVITT, ATTORNEY FOR WWE: Well, there`s a lot of investigation still going on. The relevant point is that in April, when Chris did his last test, he was negative for all these drugs. What we learned today from Dr. Sperry (ph), I thought who conducted the press conference very professionally and surgically, is that all the speculation about the impact of steroids on this case were essentially removed from the case by Dr. Sperry in about as clear a scientific language as one can articulate.
LALAMA: Well, he -- go ahead.
MCDEVITT: He was very clear in saying that there were no illegal anabolic steroids found in his body, that the significant finding, the toxicological finding, was the presence of Xanax, I believe, in Daniel`s body, and that the testosterone that was found in Chris`s body could have been taken, and probably was taken, after the April 10 test, which, as we know, anybody can do, and clearly said that that was consistent with testosterone replacement therapy, which is common among men, so...
LALAMA: But Mr. McDevitt, with all due respect, if you give us information, you know, and you`re just saying, you know, red or green, they passed or didn`t pass on the last test, why not -- what`s the big deal about giving the information on the first three and calling it what it is? Here`s the facts of the case. If we`re going to give you the results of the last tests, we`re going to give you the first three, as well. Why not? Why can`t we have those?
MCDEVITT: Well, to the proper authorities and the proper people, we`ll be more than glad to share that information.
LALAMA: Well, so that...
MCDEVITT: We`re not going to-- we`re not going to speculate on it here on television in the sound bite atmosphere of television.
LALAMA: But why give us the last results? Why (INAUDIBLE)
MCDEVITT: Because that`s the last test that was done. It`s the last indication of what Chris`s body status was with the WWE, was the test done in April. That`s the last piece of scientific information that was known. And obviously, a drug test is only as good as the day you do it. A man can go out the next day or a month from there and consume a substance.
LALAMA: That`s true. But Mr. Black, I mean, it would be fair to say that when we`re talking about steroid use, the continuum is what`s important, and the history behind it. First let me get your reaction to today`s revelations. Do you consider it some sort of vindication for the WWE, like going, Whew, boy, it wasn`t as bad as we thought? How do you look at today`s results?
DAVID BLACK, AEGIS SCIENCES CORP., RUNS WWE DRUG TESTING PROGRAM: Well, I certainly do agree with the medical examiner`s report. This is not a case of `roid rage. This is not a case of steroid abuse. I never imagined that the report would be any differently.
Chris was tested repeatedly. He was very cooperative. He was proactive in the program. He and I spoke repeatedly. He did not want to violate the program.
And I`ve listened to your other commentators, and we don`t have enough time to go through fundamental pharmacology and toxicology, but I will tell you that if someone is on testosterone replacement therapy, the T-E ratio in the urine is no longer of interest. It now -- the interest and focus now shifts to the blood testing. And the T-E ratio, as someone takes testosterone replacement therapy, their body stops producing epitestosterone.
LALAMA: Right. Right.
BLACK: Testosterone`s in the numerator. Epitestosterone`s in the denominator. You can get a T-E ratio of infinity, and it does not mean anything.
LALAMA: Well, you know, I certainly don`t mean to interrupt because we`re so happy to have you, but I don`t want to get too esoteric. I think we`ll lose a lot of people, including myself, just on basic understanding. But let`s just get to the point. A lot of people accuse you of being basically a rubber stamp for the WWE, Mr. Black. Your response?
BLACK: Well, I guess that would be hard to explain why I`ve had some pretty interesting conversations with the talent. I`m the evil (ph) Dr. Black. And why I`ve had some of the conversations I`ve had. I administer this program independently. We`ve made great progress in the one year that the program`s been in place. Not all of the talent have fallen in line initially, but they are. And you know, I can tell you, I guess I`m not loved anywhere, so...
LALAMA: Well, you`re in a tough position. And so are you, Mr. McDevitt. But I got to ask you, I mean, a lot of people...
MCDEVITT: I don`t think I`m in a tough position. Why would you say that?
LALAMA: All right. Well, then, you`re in incredibly confident man. And bless you for that. But let me ask you this. A lot of people say, What incentive is there for you guys to ever get rid of a big star who`s a steroid problem, and number two, that you might use the lower guys as scapegoats, like, OK, we`ll pick on them because we`re not going to touch our big talent? You`ve heard those accusations. I want to know what you think about it.
MCDEVITT: There`s a lot of people on your shows that, frankly, have never even been in a WWE locker room, including one of the persons you have on there tonight that you`re advertising as a former WWE talent. People can say...
LALAMA: Wait, wait. You`re saying what?
MCDEVITT: People can say -- people will say whatever they wish. The fact of the matter is, the drug testing program is independently administered by Dr. Black, who makes the determination as to whether a test is positive or negative. We are a wrestling company, we`re not scientists. That`s why you hire a man of the skill and reputation of Dr. Black to make those determinations.
LALAMA: But isn`t part of the problem -- and we only have such a short time with you, and I don`t mean to interrupt. I`m trying to get in all this stuff. Isn`t the problem that -- I mean, you really look at all these guys, it`s, like -- and women, as freelancers. I mean, they`re your employees when it looks good, but when things are bad, Well, they`re independent operators. And they`re not unionized -- I know a lot of people are against unions -- or there`s no pension and there`s no, you know, retirement and there`s no medical care. I mean, is there more that you guys could be doing to make life better for these people?
MCDEVITT: Listen, there`s -- you know, a lot of people have, unfortunately, I think, different agendas that are being put in play here. The question that we started with, and I think that we need to now turn back to, is what happened in the house that day. That is the question everybody wants to have answered, including Mr. Ballard.
I think the effect of today, hopefully, was, for those who care about scientific facts as opposed to speculation and whatnot, the evidence now has to turn back to the forensic evidence at the scene, of which we haven`t heard anything and haven`t seen anything. And frankly, today`s discussion I think raised some questions that need to be answered about the crime scene. But it takes away, I think, this notion that Chris Benoit went in that house in some fit of `roid rage...
MCDEVITT: ... and did this. That is no longer even a viable theory for what happened in that house.
LALAMA: Do you agree, Mr. Black? You said it wasn`t steroids. What happened? Just very quickly. What happened?
BLACK: I don`t know what happened. I can tell you that the testosterone replacement therapy is not at all like the case studies that show a `roid rage. It`s not anywhere near what drug use would be related to `roid rage.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There`s clear evidence to me that Daniel Benoit was sedated at the time that he was killed. The evidence that -- although testosterone was found in Christopher Benoit`s urine, there were no other steroid or artificial steroid-like drugs that were found in his urine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LALAMA: I`m Pat Lalama, in for Nancy Grace. I want to quickly get back to our two guests, Jerry McDevitt, the WWE attorney, and David Black, who basically conducts all the outside drug testing on the wrestlers. Mr. McDevitt, has the WWE ever thrown somebody out, I mean, just said, Good- bye, too many steroids in your system, pal?
MCDEVITT: The discipline that is contemplated by the drug testing program has been imposed on people who have tested positive for steroids, yes.
LALAMA: But can you say do you actually release people based on steroid use?
MCDEVITT: You have to get three positives before you get the release under the drug testing policy. We`ve had nobody get there.
LALAMA: No one`s done -- well, that`s a good statistic, wouldn`t you say?
MCDEVITT: The drug testing program, we believe, has been very effective in working. And it worked with respect to Chris Benoit.
LALAMA: David, you know, the clinical psychologist we`re going to have on the program later asked me to ask you, she said, you know, you talk about what`s important is -- or both of you say what`s important is what happened in the house that day. But the question amongst, you know, health care professionals is, why not care more about what`s happening to them past, present and future and have a better program for psychological treatment, so that we could have detected something like this?
BLACK: Well, I seriously doubt -- I don`t know what happened that night in that house, but I don`t imagine that there would be any way to predict what occurred that evening. When I spoke with Chris Benoit on three or four occasions, he was professional. He was polite. He was very intelligent. He asked very good questions. He was proactive. He was very focused.
I don`t know, maybe some psychologist has some test I`m unaware of. But the program is aggressive. Chris was tested four times in one year. He was cooperative with the program, as many of the talent are. I don`t -- certainly, we can improve the program. We will always continue to improve the program. But the program has been effective. We are making great progress.
LALAMA: Mr. McDevitt, do you agree with that? I mean, would you categorically sit here tonight and say there`s nothing wrong with WWE, you`re taking great care of all these people and nothing needs to be changed?
MCDEVITT: I think as far as drug testing programs go, Pat, anybody that`s ever been involved with a drug testing program -- and I`ve been involved in two of them now with the WEE -- realizes the complexion of a drug testing program. You`re constantly learning information. You`re constantly adapting to the information. You`re constantly doing your part to measure what comes out of a man`s body and determine what drugs they have taken.
Having said that, I think the element that`s a little bit unfair in all of this is that there are people who are charged with the responsibility for monitoring the doctors and whatnot who are prescribing these things. We don`t have those powers.
LALAMA: Well, that is a completely different and important subject, definitely.
MCDEVITT: Yes. And you know, I mean, it came out after this all happened, for example, that the DEA apparently knew about this doctor and didn`t do anything.
LALAMA: Listen, thanks, both of you, for being with us. I know you don`t want to stay with the panel. We`ll talk to you soon.
MCDEVITT: Thank you.
BLACK: Thank you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Although we look at every aspect of the case, everything still leads us to believe that this was a murder-suicide. But we`re trying to make sure that we can answer questions that it would be responsible for us to consider and then answer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LALAMA: Pat Lalama in for Nancy Grace. Now, this is a short segment, so I want to get to this fast. I need short answers. Scott Ballard, district attorney, what did you think of the WWE response?
BALLARD: The WWE is not who we`re focusing on. We believe Chris Benoit killed his wife and his child.
LALAMA: And Carlos Ashenoff, please, my humble apologies. You are a current pro wrestler. I apologize. Please tell me, very quickly, your response about the WWE.
ASHENOFF: Well, let me just say something about McDevitt. I was there in WWE as Max Moon (ph) from six to eight months. I worked there for six to eight months. I have pay stubs to prove that. I`ve been in the business 18 years. I knew Chris Benoit very well, Eddie Guerrero, very well. You know, the fact that I`m not in WWE currently doesn`t disqualify me from knowing what`s going on in that company.
LALAMA: OK, Marc Mero, very quickly, what did you think of their response?
MERO: Well, it was very arrogant, and I wish they would fund an independent study to find out why so many wrestlers are dying. Care about human life!
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With respect to Nancy Benoit, we found three different drugs in her system. Daniel Benoit, we found his blood to be positive for Alprazolam or Xanax. It is our opinion that Daniel Benoit was sedated by Xanax at the time that he was murdered.
We analyzed the urine of Chris Benoit for the presence of steroids. The only steroid drug that we found was testosterone. We found no evidence of any other of the anabolic steroids, or anything else of the types of drugs that would be injected for body building purposes or things like that. The only thing we found was testosterone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LALAMA: I`m Pat Lalama in for Nancy Grace tonight. I want to go to Manny Arora. And I want to go to you because you represent Dr. Phil Astin. He`s the doctor in question right now. Your opinion of today`s revelations, was your client overprescribing testosterone?
MANNY ARORA, ATTORNEY: Absolutely not. And the first thing I want to be clear is there`s no link of any kind with regards to anabolic steroids or any synthetic steroids, which is what people commonly prescribe to weightlifting and body builders.
This is the human hormone that is in every single male person. As the medical examiner said in his comments today, the level of testosterone was 207 nanograms. When the average person should have about 150 nanograms. The fact that he had been taking hormone replacement therapy based on any type of testicular insufficiencies that the doctor speculated, the medical examiner speculated that Mr. Benoit may have would be completely normal and in the range of any type of medical treatment.
LALAMA: All right, well what testicular deficiency -- can you go into that at all? Why was he treating him with testosterone?
ARORA: I can`t go into those specifics, because that`s something the U.S. attorney and I are going to haggle out amongst ourselves as to what the appropriate treatment cause was.
The medical examiner that there could be a possible testicular deficiency in Mr. Benoit, and it`s going to be written down if such a thing happened in the autopsy report once that gets released.
I`m confident there will be some legitimate, valid medical explanation for it. We`re not worried about it. I just want this once and for all to say there was no anabolic steroids prescribed by Mr. Astin, and end that conversation.
LALAMA: Well the fact of the matter is, he is in a heap of trouble. The feds have already indicted him, and they want to add some more. I know that`s not relative to Chris Benoit. That is relative to other patients. But a lot of people are painting your client with a broad brush.
ARORA: That`s what people are going to do, because they apparently have nothing to better to do as far as looking at the facts. They`ve charged him in two patients, saying he overprescribed pain pills over an 18-month period. That`s fine.
The government will hire doctors, we`ll retain doctors from the universities here, and they will discuss if the application of the prescriptions that was given to these patients is within valid medical standards.
It`s going to be a medical discretion call. It`s a black and white case. Did the diagnosis that was written in all the files that the DEA and the authorities have seized match up with the number of prescriptions that were written? It`s going to be a straightforward question. Maybe a little bit gray depending on how aggressive a doctor wants to be. And that`s all there really is to it.
LALAMA: Andrea Macari, clinical psychologist, what do you make of all you`ve heard tonight?
ANDREA MACARI, PSYCHOLOGIST: Well I have to say, I wish I was a psychic today and not a psychologist, because I would love to know what actually took place.
But I have to say this. You know, people aren`t born killers. Something happens throughout their life that affects them in a way to cause this type of tragedy. We know Chris Benoit loved wrestling. And I can`t help but think that WWE, the stress of that job did something to him and his family.
LALAMA: But I mean, you mentioned something in the makeup room that I thought was fascinating. You said we forget about homicide as it`s related to depression.
LALAMA: We don`t think of it that way.
MACARI: We always think of depression causing suicidal intent. But actually, depression can also cause homicidal intent.
LALAMA: You can just go off the deep end out of clinical depression one day and kill your 7-year-old son and your wife.
MACARI: Absolutely. Clinical psychologists have to assess for suicide risk, as well as homicidal risk. Now we were hearing rumors that he was prescribed Zoloft the day he went to the doctor. I want to know, did this doctor, did he do a suicide...
LALAMA: . Well let`s find out. Manny Arora, did your client prescribe Zoloft the day of the tragedy?
ARORA: We can`t get into what the doctor prescribed. The U.S. attorney and I have agreed not to talk about the facts of the case. That`s the bottom line. Whatever he prescribed, it will come out as far as the papers go. Our client has not been charged with any wrongful prescription.
LALAMA: Susan Moss, attorney and child advocate. What do you make of this lovely little boy with Xanax in his system? Every time I utter the words, I want to cry.
SUSAN MOSS, ATTORNEY: Absolutely. And the WWE lawyer came in with a white hat. But I want to know why he stood up the day of the tragedy and said that this little boy was on the autism spectrum and that he was suffering from fragile X syndrome. Why did he need to make that statement? Probably because they were worried that steroids would come back in the toxicology report.
And I`ll tell you something, the WWE just -- they`re very, very lucky tonight. Because all these wrestlers on your program have told us that they have taken steroids while they wrestled. And they seem very, very credible. I`ll tell you something else, mothers, let your children grow up to be cowboys, but not wrestlers.
LALAMA: Stacy Schneider, defense attorney. If you have the task of representing the WWE, and they haven`t been charged with anything, but they sure don`t smell good right now, what do you say to all these people who want to paint them with a broad brush if they`re all a bunch of uncaring killers?
STACY SCHNEIDER, DEFENSE ATTORNETY: I don`t think they`re uncaring killers. First of all, they did institute a program. Everybody seems to be attacking them because they didn`t go far enough. How far do they actually need to go? We have ballet dancers who are taking diet pills that are anorexics and allowed to dance on stage. Should we hold the ballet industry accountable to them? Should we hold the modeling agency accountable for the models who are starving themselves to death? Even Hollywood.
LALAMA: Good point.
SCHNEIDER: With the plastic surgery. How far do we have to go? These wrestlers know what the implications are of taking these type of drugs and they take them anyway so they can look a certain way.
LALAMA: Well wrestler Scott Ballard, what do you say to that? What Stacy is saying, hey, personal responsibility, ladies and gentlemen. What do you say to that? How much can you blame the WWE for? You`re an adult, you know what you can take and what you can`t.
SCOTT BALLARD, FAYETTE CO. DISTRICT ATTY: Absolutely. All of us are responsible for our actions. Voluntary intoxication is no defense in Georgia. It shouldn`t be a defense in Georgia. The bottom line is that it`s not normal behavior to kill your wife and your child. I don`t know what caused him to do it. We`re investigating right now to see what we can find.
LALAMA: Marc Mero, what do you say to this? Personal responsibility?
MARC MERO, FORMER WWE WRESTLER: There certainly is a personal responsibility. There`s a physician responsibility. And there`s an industry responsibility. Someone has got to step up to the plate. The testing in football is much more strict than wrestling. Why can`t it be the same in all the sports?
LALAMA: Carlos Ashenoff, what do you say?
CARLOS ASHENOFF, FRIEND OF CHRIS BENOIT: Well, the bottom line is that you`ve got all these people dying and nothing`s happening. The WWE empire was built on so many people taking steroids.
You know, they don`t want that to collapse on top of them. They need to do something about this. Yeah, personal responsibility, but it`s like the women in WWE, 90 percent of them have to get boob jobs. If in 10 years we find out that that leads to cancer, was it really their fault? They were just trying to make it in this industry where you`re pressured to look a certain way year round.
LALAMA: That`s a very good point.
To tonight`s case alert, police say a trained army sniper nearly confesses in writing to the shooting death of a local Cheyenne, Wyoming country singer and young mom. Investigators find the evidence in the form of a note while executing a search warrant. 40-year-old Robin Munis gunned down on stage with a single shot to the head, sniper style, was shot from nearly 100 yards away through a glass window. Suspect David Munis, the victim`s own husband, wanted for first-degree murder. His truck found abandoned in southeastern Wyoming with an empty handgun, case inside. Black Hawk helicopters now join the manhunt for the military sharpshooter and expert outdoorsman.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s extremely serious. You`re talking about a man with sniper training, and all that goes with it. Not only the ability to fire a weapon long distances, but also the ability to conceal himself, to remain in the same spot for hours and days on end. We`re taking it very seriously and we`re acting with as much caution as we can to achieve the mission.
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(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It wasn`t surprising that they discovered high testosterone levels in Chris Benoit`s body. About 10 times that of a normal person. But also, they said it is not clear how that testosterone was used.
But it did not necessarily indicate any kind of steroid rage, or any outburst, aggression or behavior. It could have simply been used for some kind of testicular insufficiency. So they do not know how the levels may have affected Chris Benoit`s behavior.
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LALAMA: I`m Pat Lalama in for Nancy Grace. The executive producer is having heart palpitations. Let`s make it clear that we`re not calling anyone at the WWE a killer. It was more a generic reference saying all the untimely deaths, seemingly untimely deaths, a lot of people worry about the WWE`s role in not caring for the people who work for it.
OK, having said that, I want to go to Dave Meltzer. You`re a journalist in this business, wrestlingobserver.com. What do you make of it? You`ve heard the WWE.
DAVE MELTZER, WRESTLINGOBSERVER.COM: I have a lot to say right now and I probably don`t have enough time to say it.
LALAMA: Go for it. No, you don`t.
MELTZER: First of all, there`s been a lot of people saying a lot of things that are trying to mislead the public here. The first thing I want to tell you is this. I want to tell you this, trying to say that testosterone is not a steroid, as Manny Arora said, testosterone is the most popular steroid for building muscle mass. OK?
And again, he had 10 times the normal human dosage. If you were doing testosterone replacement therapy, you would have the normal dosage. The amount of testosterone that Chris Benoit had, if you had taken a steroid test in the state of California, there have been so many people who have failed steroid tests in boxing and in martial arts in the last several months, Chris Benoit`s steroid total would have been the second highest that I`m aware of anyone.
LALAMA: Wow, very interesting.
MELTZER: The only one I know that was higher was Johnnie Morton, who was a former football player who failed to pass a month ago. Let me finish because I have a lot more to say.
LALAMA: I know, but we`ve only got a little bit of time and a lot of guests.
MELTZER: OK. So I`m just saying that -- also, he also said that this proves that -- Jerry McDevitt said that it proves it`s not roid rage. And like I said from the very start, I do not believe it was roid rage, but nothing was proven.
The fact is, he had more than enough testosterone in his system, if you want to believe in roid rage that that could be it. Now, I don`t believe in it. And the other point that he said was that they -- excuse me, that they, that they ruled it out. And the medical doctor out there did not rule out roid rage. He said he could not prove it was roid rage, which nobody would be able to prove.
There`s a big difference in saying, I cannot prove it was roid rage, and what Jerry McDevitt said is they have ruled it out. They have not ruled it out. They just don`t know and we don`t know. It probably isn`t. I just want to make that observation because there`s a lot of deception out there.
LALAMA: You know your stuff, clearly. Bryan Alvarez, do you agree with your colleague?
BRYAN ALVAREZ, FRIEND OF CHRIS BENOIT: I do. And one thing to note is that WWE has been around since 1963. And body builders and wrestlers have been on steroids since probably the late `50s. And they don`t kill their families.
So to place this blame on steroids is very simplistic. I thought it was very telling that the WWE people did not stay on to talk to the rest of the panel. I also think it`s very interesting that today, WWE put out a statement where like Dave said, they`re trying to make a separation between anabolic steroid and testosterone.
LALAMA: There isn`t a separation, right?
ALVAREZ: No, the DEA makes it very clear that anabolic steroids and testosterone are the same thing. So the question is, why are WWE wrestlers, no matter what the levels are, allowed to be taking anabolic steroids? Especially in Chris Benoit`s case with a level of 59-1 ratio.
LALAMA: Yes, but you know what, even the medical examiner said, well, it could be testicular, what was it, malfunction. Dr. William Morrone, what did he say and what does that mean? Explain it for us.
WILLIAM MORRONE, MEDICAL EXAMINER: Well, testicular malfunction can happen a couple of different ways. There`s just a failure in the tissue to produce enough, or it`s the end result of cancer, and a curative surgery. To add to this, the exact words that the medical examiner used, Dr. Spear (ph) was precise. He said there is no consensus that the use of testosterone has contributed to this. He`s very precise. He didn`t rule anything out.
LALAMA: Right. Manny Arora, a lot of people are piling on you and your client. I mean, you know, how do you defend yourself against these accusations? Not you, but your client?
ARORA: People pile on against us and our clients all the time.
LALAMA: You`re used to that, aren`t you?
ARORA: The journalists that are talking don`t know what they`re talking about. The medical examiner specifically said in his report, you played that clip already twice tonight, there`s no anabolic steroids or any time of synthetic steroid commonly associated with body building found in this man`s body.
This is a 207 level nanogram, which a normal people could have as much as a 150 level nanogram. If they actually talk to the medical examiner or any competent medical examiner, they will tell you if you`re going through hormone replacement therapy, assuming there`s a valid reason to go through hormone replacement therapy, this is not an unusual number to find, that you`re 57 nanograms over.
LALAMA: Manny, hold on. Andrea Macari, you`re dying to get in your clinical psychologist. Go for it.
MACARI: Testosterone is linked to aggression. We know that murderers, we measure their levels of testosterone. They have higher levels.
LALAMA: And receding hairlines.
MACARI: We also do studies on mice. What they do is they castrated the mice and they compare them to mice that still produce testosterone. The mice that still have the testosterone, they actually have more muciside (ph), which is mouse murder.
LALAMA: Wow. Stacy Schneider, defense attorney, very quickly, give me a response.
SCHNEIDER: You know, all of these drugs, the testosterone, steroids, all do contribute -- I handle violent criminals. They do contribute to violent behavior. There`s just no way to know here what went on there. You know, I don`t blame the WWE for what they`re saying. They`re trying to say there was no illegal drug use being prescribed.
The doctor`s trying to defend himself that this was an appropriate medical recommendation. But it will really come down to the U.S. attorney`s investigation as to what was the proper prescription.
LALAMA: Very good. Thank you. Tonight, CNN Heroes.
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MARGERY KABUYA, CNN HERO: A girl here can get married as young as 10. Certainly by 13 a lot of them are already married. Girls are very, very important because they are a source of wealth. That is why it is very difficult for a Maasai man to let a girl do anything else but get married.
Before a girl gets married here, they must go through the female genital mutilation. When you delay marriage, you delay circumcision. My name is Margery Kabuya. And we started a school for Maasai girls. We say what we`re going to do is we are going to use the same process of booking the girls. The girls used to be booked for marriage. Now they`re just being booked for school. We go through the exact same ceremony. We monitor the girls. When they are six, another blessing is done and we say the girl goes to school. We`re not saying the girl should not get married. We`re just saying marry them off later.
We have managed to delay -- at least delay the female genital mutilation. We will grow up into responsible girls, right? I think the best thing is that it has given them opportunities that they would never have had. It has opened them and their parents to a different lifestyle.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LALAMA: Now over to Headline Prime`s Glenn Beck. Hey, Glenn.
GLENN BECK, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, the latest on the tragic murder- suicide of wrestler Chris Benoit and his family. Can you believe it`s been almost a month? The medical examiner has released the toxicology results.
And then also the report card has come out on terror. The National Intelligence Estimate came out today. It`s titled the terrorist threat to the U.S. homeland. How long do we have before Osama and company try to pull off another attack?
And betrayal on the border. The Senate held hearings today on the two border guards I believe are America`s first political prisoners. I`ll sit down with Lou Dobbs today. Is a pardon any closer for these guys? All that, and more, coming up.
LALAMA: Thanks, Glenn. I want to go to Susan Moss. This is so sad, it`s so depressing. Give us some clarity here, briefly.
MOSS: The clarity is that this is just a terrific shame. You have a family pharmacy in this house with everybody either taking drugs or being shot up with drugs. And the result is this horrific, horrific tragedy. Nothing will bring back these people. But if we can make society a little better, because of the lessons we`ve learned in this case, then we`re all better off.
LALAMA: Hard to stop thinking about that little boy. Unbelievable. Let`s take a quick caller. I`ve got a few seconds left. I can`t even believe it. Bob from Florida, quick question.
CALLER: Yes, hi, thanks for taking my call. In reference to your doctor on the panel, if the autopsy results have been released on Chris Benoit, is there any evidence to show of any advanced disease stages to his heart, kidney, liver from the prolonged use of the steroids and prescription drugs?
LALAMA: OK, now did you want that from Dr. Arora or Dr. Morrone?
CALLER: For your doctor who came on at the beginning of the program.
LALAMA: Unfortunately we`re not going to have much time to answer that. Dr. Morrone, very quickly, five seconds.
MORRONE: All that will come out in the microscopic slide pathology that hasn`t been released yet.
LALAMA: OK, very good.
Tonight, let`s stop to remember army staff sergeant Rob Rolfing, just 29, from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, killed in Iraq on his second tour of duty. A number of the elite Green Beret receiving the Purple Heart and Bronze Star. A graduate of Vassar College with a degree in astronomy and physics. Played soccer in the NCAA. Rolfing also loved football, hockey and karaoke. He leaves behind grieving parents Rex and Margie, brother T.J. and sister Tiffany. Rob Rolfing, an American hero.
Thank you to all our guests and to you at home for being with us. Nancy is back tomorrow at eight. Thank you, Nancy, for the opportunity. Until then, have a wonderful evening. Good night.