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Kidnapper Attempts Infant Snatch at Supermarket

Aired October 15, 2007 - 20:00:00   ET


NANCY GRACE, HOST: Tonight, a young mom goes grocery shopping with her 6-week-old baby girl, upscale Westbury suburb. There at the local supermarket, her worst nightmare comes true. Right there in the grocery store, another woman stalks the new mother and grabs the baby. Tonight, the manhunt intensifies for the grocery store baby snatcher.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A baby girl comes within seconds of being kidnapped, and it`s all caught on tape. It starts with a leisurely trip to the food store. Suddenly, disaster, the 6-week-old girl snatched right from the shopping cart as her mom shops inches away for fruit, police releasing the video in an attempt to find the 40-year-old hunchback suspect as the hunt for a baby snatcher ignites.


GRACE: And tonight: After befriending an eight-month-pregnant Missouri woman on line, she travels all the way to mom`s home to mount a deadly attack. Why? To surgically take the unborn child from the womb, then go home to pose in her community as a radiant new mom. That is, until she`s suspected of murder. Defense? Insanity!


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Missouri woman Bobbie Jo Stinnett finds out she`s pregnant and anxiously awaits the arrival of her baby girl. Stinnett and her husband, both in the dog breeding business, meet a woman named Lisa Montgomery at a dog show. Police say Montgomery, using a fake name, makes contact with Stinnett on line, saying she`s interested in buying a rat terrier from the couple. The next day, Montgomery shows up at Bobbie Jo Stinnett`s home, but it`s not the puppy she wants, after all. That`s when police say Montgomery strangles Stinnett with a rope, grabs a kitchen knife and cuts the fetus from Stinnett`s womb. Her motive, to cover a fake pregnancy. Montgomery now on trial for kidnapping resulting in the death of Bobbie Jo Stinnett.


GRACE: Good evening. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us. First, a suspected baby snatcher on the loose tonight evading police, and it`s all caught on video.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It started as a routine trip to the supermarket, but then the unthinkable. While mom is shopping for fruit, a hunchbacked woman swoops in and steals the shopping cart, the cart holding her 6-week- old baby girl. The stranger attempts to kidnap the girl, but is quickly cornered by employees and customers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just a matter of, you know, 20, 30 feet, she could have been out the door and it could have been a -- you know, could have been a lot worse than it really was.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Suspect gets away, but the incident all caught on tape. Tonight, a baby snatcher is on the loose.


GRACE: It`s caught on tape. Great. How is that helping me? Think about it. Were you in the grocery store today? Did you have your child with you, sitting there in the shopping cart? This mom takes her 6-week- old baby girl to the grocery store, not uncommon, simply turns about a quarter away, maybe halfway away from the baby, gets some produce, the baby is snatched right there in the local supermarket. Yes, that`s what happened.

Out to Kevin Miller, investigative reporter with 1020 KDKA. What happened?

KEVIN MILLER, KDKA NEWSRADIO 1020: Well, Nancy, as you saw on the tape right there, the young mother was distracted. You saw the suspect...

GRACE: Wa, wa, wa, wa, wa, wait! Wa-wait! Distracted?

MILLER: Well, she`s looking for fruit.

GRACE: She was not distracted, she was getting a cantaloupe or a banana.

MILLER: Right. She was looking for some fruit.

GRACE: She didn`t do anything wrong. She`s not distracted.

MILLER: OK. She lost focus on her child. She was getting some fruit, turned her back for a minute, and you see the hunchback coming in and trying to get away with the child. You hear the mother on the tape going, My baby~! My baby! The suspect, about 5-1 to 5-3, police say, with freckles, light brown hair, immediately got rid of the kid, ran into the car. It was a beige car, and that`s what police are looking for right now.

GRACE: Now, here`s my question, Kevin Miller. I understand the car was waiting with somebody in that car?

MILLER: Yes. That`s what police say, they were waiting. That`s why the suspect has gotten away, and police are looking for him.

GRACE: OK. We`re taking a look at that surveillance video right now. Take a look at that. You see the mom. The mom is in the produce section. She just simply turns away to grab some produce. The next thing you know, another young lady takes the baby out of the local grocery store.

To Eric Williams with WBAI radio 99.5 FM. Tell me, Eric, what do we know about the so-called getaway car?

ERIC WILLIAMS, WBAI RADIO 99.5 FM: Well, Nancy, what we know for sure is that it was a beige-colored car, but there`s no details at all about the kind of license plate, whether it was a New York or Connecticut or New Jersey license plate. We don`t know if the woman was actually driving the car or if she had somebody in the car waiting for her. They don`t know whether or not this was part of a kidnapping ring or she was just a demented woman acting alone. We don`t know.

GRACE: Well, you know, here`s the deal. Let`s go out to Detective Lieutenant Ray Cote, commanding officer in the third squad, Nassau County Police Department. Detective, if somebody was in the car, that would be more indicative of a baby kidnap ring. If she`s acting alone, it would be more indicative of her wanting a baby for her own. What do you think?

DET. LT. RAY COTE, NASSAU COUNTY POLICE: It appears, Nancy, that this woman certainly had an intent to take this baby away. Based on the video and what we`ve seen from witnesses, it appears as though her intent was to get that baby out the front door. And fortunately, there were a couple of bystanders that prevented that from happening.

GRACE: Do you think anyone was in the car, Detective?

COTE: We have no indication of that. What we do know is that the mother saw the woman get out of the car when she was on her way into the grocery store. This woman helped put the baby into the shopping cart. At that point, Mom does not see the lady again until later on in that videotape.

GRACE: Out to the lines. Ouida in Idaho. Hi, Ouida.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Nancy. I love you. I love your show. And congratulations on your baby.

GRACE: Thank you. Hey, I`m not even answering the door until these twins are 18. I`m not going to let anything happen to them.


GRACE: What`s your question, dear?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I wondered why the mother, with such a young baby, would turn her back. You know...

GRACE: You know what, Ouida? It was not intentional. Ouida, we`ve got to go to break. We`re going to be right back with your question. Hang on, Ouida. We`re taking your questions live, everybody. Be right back.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A baby girl comes within seconds of being kidnapped, and it`s all caught on tape. It starts with a leisurely trip to the food store. Suddenly, disaster, the 6-week-old girl snatched right from the shopping cart as her mom shops inches away for fruit, police releasing the video in an attempt to find the 40-year-old hunchback suspect as the hunt for a baby snatcher ignites.


GRACE: That`s right, at the local grocery store, a woman takes her 6- week-old baby girl. She`s in the produce division. And take a look at this. A woman comes and snatches the baby. The baby is safe tonight, the baby snatcher still at large.

To Dr. Robi Ludwig. Dr. Ludwig, psychotherapist, author and host of her own show on the GSN network, if she wants a baby, will she be thwarted? She`s still on the loose right now.

ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Yes, this is a dangerous woman. This is a woman to be concerned about because she`s not going it stop with just one woman. She saw an opportunity. It didn`t work out. This is somebody who will strike again, and everybody in the area should definitely be alerted.

GRACE: Why do you say will strike again?

LUDWIG: Well, you know, if she`s part of a ring, then she has to. If it`s just her own problematic area, then she`s going it have a need to. For women who really want a baby and who can`t...

GRACE: A problematic area? Did I just hear that? Are you talking about being a felony -- a felon kidnapper?

LUDWIG: Well...

GRACE: Is that the problematic area...


LUDWIG: Perhaps I should say she is a diagnostic problem and issue. But for women who really want to have children who can`t, it forces them, some women, to be so desperate, they`ll do anything to get a child.

GRACE: Back out to the lines. Ouida in Idaho, are you still with me.


GRACE: OK. Your question is, Why does she turn away, right?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My point is, you can`t trust anyone today, or anything. I mean, your own children are in so much danger out there.

GRACE: You know, we`re taking a look at this video right now. Detective -- with us, Detective Lieutenant, Ray Cote, commanding officer there in Nassau County. Detective, how many seconds do you think the mom just turned away to look at produce?

COTE: It was very brief, Nancy. The lady, the mom was shopping for small items, and her attention was diverted maybe 30 seconds, at most.

GRACE: Out to the lines. Kelly in Maryland. Hi, Kelly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi. How are you, Nancy?

GRACE: I`m good, dear. What`s your question?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My question is, if authorities can zoom in on the footage caught with the baby snatcher, if they`re going to go back and go ahead and pursue that. And if they do, hopefully, some people can come forward to try to get her and get her, you know, arrested and take the proper precautions. And maybe this is a wake-up call to mothers of newborns and other individuals that we need to be a little bit more precautious (SIC) anywhere that we go with our children.

GRACE: Kelly, are you saying zoom in and get a picture of the snatcher`s face? Do I have Kelly in Maryland with me?


GRACE: OK. I think what she`s asking, Donald Schweitzer, former detective, Santa Ana PD, is can we zoom in? What`s our technology? Can we get a better picture of the supermarket baby snatcher?

DONALD SCHWEITZER, FORMER DETECTIVE, SANTA ANA POLICE DEPARTMENT: Nancy, generally, the cameras that are in these types of stores aren`t that high-tech. They`re just aerials of the -- of what`s going on. But there`s things within the video that the police are going to be looking for, such as the race, the gender. They`re going to be looking at people with hunchbacks in the community. There`s a lot of other things that they could look for to identify this person, as well as taking that footage and bringing it out in the community and find out if anybody recognizes the person.

GRACE: Yes. What I was asking you is about the capability to enhance the video.

SCHWEITZER: I think that the crime labs do have abilities to enhance videos. Yes, they do have that. But you know, in this case right here, it seems like there`s some frontal shots, so it`s possible.

GRACE: What about it, Detective Cote?

COTE: The quality of the image has been enhanced to the best of our ability. Of course...

GRACE: Nassau PD -- how about the feds? How about the state crime labs?

COTE: Certainly, we`re working with the feds in this case. Any kidnapping case gets the federal...

GRACE: I mean, if they can show me a rock on the moon, certainly they can show me this woman`s face. Agree or disagree?

COTE: The quality of the equipment that`s used to make the recording is very important to this. And you can only modify this particular video so much, and the quality starts to deteriorate.

GRACE: You know, that`s a good point, the quality of the video there in the supermarket. Another thing, Detective, I`ve heard several times "hunchback." I`m looking at the woman. I`m not seeing the hunchback.

COTE: That`s the description that was given to us by the victim, the mother.

GRACE: Do you see a hunchback on the video?

COTE: I don`t see it, and it`s not as pronounced as it may seem to the woman, but that`s what she`s describing. And a witness that was on the aisle at the time also states that she was hunched over to some degree.

GRACE: So to Dr. William Morrone, medical examiner and pathologist. Doctor, I`m looking at her. Maybe it`s a little bit of a dowager`s hump. Maybe she`s got a backpack under her jacket. But I`m not really seeing a hunchback like I would envision that.

DR. WILLIAM MORRONE, MEDICAL EXAMINER, FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST: I would always say there`s the opportunity for some theatrics or deception. This could possibly even be a man, so...

GRACE: Whoa! Hold on. Hold on. Ho-ho-ho-hold on. What about it, Eric Williams? What can you tell me about the identity of the snatcher?

WILLIAMS: It`s really indistinguishable. I mean, you really can`t see exactly who it is in the videotape that I`ve seen on these airwaves at all. I mean, so just simply going by speculation and eyewitness accounts of that.

GRACE: Well, I hardly think that the mother and the people there that tried to block the door are speculating about who they say saw. Detective Cote, give me the best description you`ve got so far.

COTE: We`re pretty confident, Nancy, that this is a woman about 40 years of age. She`s fair-skinned with freckles, light brown hair. She was wearing a three-quarter-length jacket with a black sweater and light- colored pants.

GRACE: SO 35 to 40, 5-1 to 5-3, freckles -- 800-244-TIPS. What color was her hair? Short, light brown hair, black sweater and jacket. I`m still hung up on something, Detective Cote. Was a car waiting for her, as the reports say, which suggests to me somebody was in on this with her or - - I mean, how does she get all the way across the parking lot to her car, or was the car waiting there at the curb for her?

COTE: The car was parked right outside the door. Usually, people park in the stalls. In this particular case, this woman had the car parked facing the street. And it is not only illegal but it`s uncommon to see a car in that position, which would suggest that car was left there in an attempt for her to make a quick escape.

GRACE: Let`s unleash the lawyers. Joining us tonight, Susan Moss out of New York, child advocate, Daniel Horowitz out of San Francisco and Sharon Liko, defense attorney out of Denver. Susan Moss, weigh in.

SUSAN MOSS, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY: Hunchback or not, you don`t steal a tot. What makes this so disturbing is that this woman targeted her prey. She saw the woman going into the supermarket. She even helped the child get into the cart. And she followed her, waiting for the moment to make her getaway, and then had the car all set. This woman will not be stopped, and that`s why it is so imperative that everyone in Nassau County, Long Island, look for this woman and help the police.

GRACE: Daniel Horowitz, there does seem to be a degree of planning, as if she was a predator, having her car parked right there at the door, pointed toward the street, waiting for some mom to come in with a baby.

DANIEL HOROWITZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes, Nancy. Or maybe this woman with the baby was followed to the supermarket by this predator.

GRACE: You`re not helping the defense, Daniel!

HOROWITZ: I know. I`m not trying right now. I have no mercy for this woman. I just hope they have fingerprints on the shopping cart, Nancy. And one other point I want to make. This mother was not at fault. If you watch mothers in stores and anywhere else, and any mother will tell you this, you can`t watch your kid all the time. So we`re all at risk for this type of random crime.

GRACE: Sharon Liko, what would be the best defense, insanity?

SHARON LIKO, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Grocery Samaritan to the rescue! She`s standing near the peaches, and she sees the kid starting to reach for something and fall out of the cart, so she runs to save the kid from falling. And in the momentum, she keeps running and then realizes that her act is misconstrued. The mother starts screaming, so she abandons the wagon and shoots for the door.

GRACE: Let me guess, Sharon. You won the writing award in law school because that is a beautiful work of fiction. But I guess when you`re between a rock and a hard spot, what are you going to do? Hey...


LIKO: ... defense.

GRACE: Out to the lines. Dee in Connecticut. Hi, Dee.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Nancy. Congratulations.

GRACE: Thank you very much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just wanted to talk about prevention. I mean, for example, I never left my house out in public with my daughter unless I was wearing her in a wrap so that nobody could touch her. So I never had to worry about turning my back. You know, what can we do to prevent this from happening?

GRACE: What can we do? Let`s go back out to Detective Cote. What can we do?

COTE: ... quite common that ladies leave their pocketbooks and things on the baby`s portion of the stroller or the carriage, where you would put your groceries. This is certainly a unique situation, where a baby was -- someone tried to take the baby from her, from the mother. Certainly, you want to keep your eye on your things, your pocketbook and certainly your children.

GRACE: Well, you know, that`s all well and good to say, Keep your eye on it, Detective. No offense. I`m on your side. But the mom just turned away to get a banana or a cantaloupe or whatever it was she was getting in the produce division. It`s not like she left the baby on another aisle. She didn`t leave the baby out in the car. The baby was a foot away from her. I mean, we can see in the video. Take a look at that. It`s not like the mom, in my mind, did anything negligent at all, Detective.

COTE: I agree. I agree. This mother is obviously very traumatized by this whole event, and any mother, it`s her worst nightmare to have someone take...

GRACE: Detective, tell me again how she was stopped from leaving.

COTE: As she was pushing this cart towards the front of the store, fortunately, there were two good Samaritans that happened to be shopping and had their carts blocking the aisle. When this woman approached, she couldn`t escape in that direction. And the mom`s screaming caught everyone`s attention. They saw the look on this woman`s face and they realized something was amiss. And fortunately, she didn`t get away with the baby.

GRACE: And so she left the baby where?

COTE: Right when these people blocked the aisle, the woman that we have not yet identified ran back with the cart to where she originally encountered this woman and just screamed, leaving the baby there without the mother or anyone. And that`s where the mother reunited with her baby.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The woman followed this young lady into the supermarket and attempted to take the baby away from her mother. Ultimately, the woman that tried to steal the baby was cornered on an aisle by some good Samaritans, and she gave the baby back to the mother. And fortunately, she wasn`t successful.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A baby girl comes within seconds of being kidnapped, and it`s all caught on tape. It starts with a leisurely trip to the food store. Suddenly, disaster, the 6-week-old girl snatched right from the shopping cart as her mom shops inches away for fruit, police releasing the video in an attempt to find the 40-year-old hunchback suspect as the hunt for a baby snatcher ignites.


GRACE: That woman, who attempted to steal a 6-week-old baby girl in broad daylight in the local grocery store, is at large tonight. Psychologists say -- and psychiatrists -- that if she wants a baby that badly, she will get a baby.

Out to the lines. Tina in Kentucky. Hi, Tina.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi. I just wanted to wish you good luck with your twins. I love your show.

GRACE: You know what? Thank you so much. They are giving me fits. But I tell you what, after I heard this story today, Fedex came to the door and I went, Whoever you are, go away! I`m not even answering the door. I don`t know who you are. Go away! Just leave it. Because there`s -- it`s crazy. In the local grocery store!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. I was wondering if they got any plates on her...


GRACE: OK, what about it, Detective Lieutenant Ray Cote, any tags?

COTE: That would have been helpful. Unfortunately, there was not a plate that was given to us by either the victim or an eyewitness.

GRACE: Out to the lines. McKay (ph) in Alaska. Hi, McKay.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi. How`re you doing?

GRACE: I`m good dear. What`s your question?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My question is, being a health care professional here in Alaska, the characteristic that she was described as having this hunchback, could it possibly be use of a thyroid medication and the area pharmacist could be on the lookout for...

GRACE: Oh, McKay, that`s brilliant. Dr. Morrone, what about that?

MORRONE: That`s possible. You have to look at your differential diagnosis. Thyroid, steroid use...

GRACE: Break it down for us. We`re just a bunch of trial lawyers.

MORRONE: OK. Any time you have a medical condition, you make a list of differential diagnosis. Thyroid, osteoporosis, steroid use -- all those things could contribute.

GRACE: Or it could be a backpack under her raincoat. I mean, It could be anything, Doctor.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Friends, family, and even her husband testify they actually believed that 39-year-old Lisa Montgomery was pregnant and delivered a baby, a pregnancy, authorities say, she lied about for nine months. Family meet the baby for the first time when Montgomery shows up in her Kansas hometown, a newborn girl there in her arms.

But the next day, Montgomery`s family in shock when police arrive to arrest her. It`s revealed Montgomery not only kidnapped the baby, but cut the newborn from the womb of Missouri woman Bobbie Jo Stinnett with a kitchen knife, all after strangling her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police say Lisa Montgomery came to the home of 23- year-old Bobbie Jo Stinnett in Skidmore, Missouri, posing as a buyer of dogs that Stinnett raised. Instead, investigators say, Montgomery strangled Stinnett and cut the 8-month-old fetus from the mother`s womb. The mother died, the baby survived, and by next day was found by police at Montgomery`s home 170 miles away. Montgomery is now facing a federal charge called kidnapping resulting in death.


GRACE: And that federal charge could carry the death penalty. We are hearing forensics play out in the courtroom, and now we learned that this eight-month pregnant mom may have come to during this ordeal, that originally she may have been strangled, came to while the baby, her baby, was being surgically removed from her womb there in her home.

Why do we think that? Because we`re now learning that on her bare feet was dried blood. If she had been unconscious during that whole time, out to Kirk Wayman, news director with KXCV and KRNW, she would not have had the blood on the bottoms of her feet. There were also defensive wounds. What can you tell us, Kirk, what happened?

KIRK WAYMAN, KXCV/KRNW RADIO: Well, basically, they`re building an argument, Lisa Montgomery and the victim, Bobbie Jo Stinnett, knew each other through those dog-breeding circles and they communicated with each other on a blog site regarding breeding rat terrier dogs. There`s even that photograph you showed at the top of the show of the two of them together with a group of dog breeders at a show in Kansas.

And they say that Montgomery tried to contact Bobbie Jo Stinnett about seeing a dog and asking her how to get to her house. And Bobbie Jo simply responded she wasn`t interested, so then Montgomery opened a hotmail account under the name of Fischer4Kids and asked about seeing Stinnett`s dog. This time, she called herself Darlene Fischer, and Stinnett gave this Darlene Fischer her home address, so they met up, and apparently the crime happened.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dressed in an orange jump suit and bound by chains, Lisa Montgomery, a mother of four children, quietly answered questions in federal court. Judge John Maughmer appointed two attorneys for Montgomery. She was subdued. But after the hearing, there was outrage from residents who came to watch.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just looked at her, and I thought, "You took that baby`s mother away. You left her bleeding like that. How could you have done something so evil? You`re such an evil person."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She thrives on attention. She has an inferiority complex. She`s never felt that she`s measured up to anything. And she gets real, real, real angry when the truth is known about one of her lies. And I believe that it just drove her to the fact that she didn`t want to be proved to be wrong in this situation.


GRACE: This isn`t the first time that a pregnant woman has been attacked to get her baby. Peggy Jo Conner convicted after beating a pregnant neighbor, Valerie Oskin, with a baseball bat to try to steal her baby, her unborn child. Sharon Torrez accused of kidnapping a 1-week-old baby after killing the baby`s mom. Effie Goodson convinced her husband she was pregnant, even had a baby shower before killing a pregnant friend, Carolyn Simpson, and taking the baby. Michelle Bica allegedly shot pregnant neighbor Theresa Andrews, abducted baby, claiming to her husband she was pregnant.

Laci Peterson, if you will recall, the defense theorized that she had been killed for her unborn child, Connor, and then Mark Geragos, the defense attorney in that case, also theorized another woman, Evelyn Hernandez, was part of basically a baby-snatching scheme, where pregnant women were abducted and killed for their babies. Of course, that wasn`t true with Laci Peterson and Evelyn Hernandez. It was just a wacky defense theory, but it has been true in other cases.

The case we`re talking about right now, Kevin Miller, give me a recap.

KEVIN MILLER, REPORTER: Well, Lisa Montgomery has confessed to killing Bobbie Jo Stinnett, carving out her baby, claiming the baby as her own, and she is right now at a holding facility in Leavenworth, Kansas.

GRACE: Now, let`s talk about the defense. Let`s unleash the lawyers, Susan Moss, Daniel Horowitz out of the San Francisco jurisdiction, Sharon Liko out of Denver.

First of all, to you, Susan Moss, the defense is insanity. And I guess they were up against the wall because you`ve got DNA, you`ve got incredible forensics on this woman`s computer, where she met the woman online and pretended she wanted to buy a baby rat terrier, a puppy. The victim bred dogs. I mean, there`s a ton of evidence. So when there`s nowhere to go, you go, "I`m crazy."

SUSAN MOSS, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY: She may be crazy, but she`s not insane, for legal purposes, that is. And that`s because she knew the difference between right and wrong. If she didn`t, she wouldn`t have come back to her hometown and lie. She would have told the truth. If she did nothing wrong, why would she lie? But lie, she did. And this was an elaborate scheme. It took planning. To me, that means intent, and she is going to go down big.

GRACE: You know, it`s amazing, Daniel Horowitz, that in a case like this someone would try the insanity defense. I guess they`ve got nowhere to hide, because it`s my understanding that about 2 percent of the time the insanity defense is mounted, and it fails about 75 percent of that 2 percent.

DANIEL HOROWITZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Right, Nancy, but it`s because of people...

GRACE: In federal cases.

HOROWITZ: In all cases, it fails most of the time because the insanity defense is a farce. People are truly mentally ill, like this Montgomery is, don`t get treatment. They get no sympathy. She is so loony, Nancy, and yet the legal standard, as Ms. Moss just said, will make her be treated the same as a cold-blooded killer. And that`s not right.

GRACE: Hold on. Hold on. She tried to strangle an 8-month pregnant woman after breaking into her house, and then she cut her womb open and took the baby, drove the baby about 100 miles to her hometown, and then transformed herself into a radiant mom, showing the baby off at local stores, and diners, and so forth. Her own husband at the time believed she was pregnant. I don`t know how that happened.

To Sharon Liko, she`s crazy like a fox. She had to do a lot of planning. When the victim rejected her first offer to buy the puppies, she made up a whole new identity online. I mean, this woman, she -- whoa, whoa, what about doctoring the sonogram, did you see that, Sharon?

SHARON LIKO, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I did see that. But you`ve got to understand that insanity is not just a random act. She doesn`t have to be a lunatic and bounce off the walls, stick her finger in light sockets, and wear aluminum foil in her underwear. I mean, she has an illness, something called pseudocyesis.

GRACE: Oh, really? Sharon, what illness would that be?

LIKO: Pseudocyesis. That`s one of the things that she...

GRACE: You want to translate for us?

LIKO: Sure. It is when a woman falsely believes she`s pregnant, and it`s a combination of mental and physical manifestations.

GRACE: Excuse me...

LIKO: Yes?

GRACE: ... Sharon, it sounds beautiful.

To Dr. Robi Ludwig, psychotherapist and author, this illness that I`ve read about and studied that this woman is claiming she had, where you really want to have a baby, to be an insanity defense in this country, it must rise to the level of what we call the McNaughton test. The McNaughton test is named after a case in Great Britain that we brought over to our country, it`s part of our common law. McNaughton says that you must not know that what you`re doing is wrong at the time of the incident. You do not know right from wrong at the time of the incident.

So if she did not know this was wrong, why go to such great lengths to cover it up?

DR. ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Yeah, I think this woman knew what she was doing was wrong, but she just wanted the baby so desperately. And for her, she went to extremes in order to make this happen for herself. So the fact that she was stealing and killing another woman to get the baby, she wanted it, and it was really important to her. Now, what`s interesting is it appears that she...

GRACE: In other words, she placed her own desires above the...

LUDWIG: Way above.

GRACE: ... first-time mother and above the life of another woman.

LUDWIG: That`s right.

GRACE: That just sounds like plain, old premeditation for murder. That does not sound like insanity.

LUDWIG: Well, I mean, clearly, she has a mental illness, but...

GRACE: What? What mental illness?

LUDWIG: Well, she has a character disorder, probably some sociopathy. She could be delusional in some way.

GRACE: That`s not insanity.

LUDWIG: Not in the eyes of the law, but certainly in the eyes of the mental health system. This is a woman who needs a lot of help and a lot of treatment. But I agree with you, Nancy, it does not qualify as insanity under the law.

GRACE: Out to the lines, Bonnie in California. Hi, Bonnie.

CALLER: Hello. Congratulations on your pregnancy and your twins. And I know this is really sad, but it`s not going to happen again for you, so...

GRACE: What?

CALLER: Oh, I`m just saying -- I`m just saying congratulations.

GRACE: I got you. And you know what? At the beginning, I had no idea it was twins. And when I have stories like this, and I remember writing about this in my book, this particular case, and now it`s coming forward at trial, Bonnie, and the forensics about what this mother-to-be went through are just horrible. I mean, I`ll have the reporters tell you about it in just a second. What`s your question, dear?

CALLER: Well, my question is, does she have any kind of psych history with losing children? Because this sounds very callous and calculating.


GRACE: Bonnie, I know a little bit about it. I know that she already had four children, and she had her tubes tied, tubal ligation, and that, since she had her tubes tied, she had told her family and friends four times she was pregnant. None of those times was she really pregnant. I don`t know how she tricked her then-husband, her current husband, into believing she was pregnant.

Out to Kevin Miller, describe the crime scene for me. And other than those four claims of pregnancy, do we know of any mental illness?

MILLER: Nancy, the crime scene, the victim was discovered by her mother. And she said in court that it was like her daughter had just exploded, blood was everywhere. Now, the defense is claiming that, because the victim was abused as a child by her then-stepfather, her mother testified in court on Friday that she did see Lisa Montgomery having sex with her stepfather at the time.

Also, her other siblings have testified that they were beaten, that they were abused by the stepfather. The stepfather was deposed by videotape because he wasn`t healthy enough to testify. And he said he doesn`t recall, but she`s using that defense, Nancy.

GRACE: Well, long story short, she`s got her siblings and her mother saying that her father molested her. You know what? I feel badly for her, and I wish the mother had had the backbone to take the father to trial when that happened way back when. But I do not see how that`s going to be a defense in this case.

Back out to Kirk Wayman, I want to go back to Bonnie in California`s question. Do we know anything, other than being an adult victim of child molestation, do we know anything about her mental state of mind? And what else do we know about the crime scene, Kirk?

WAYMAN: I don`t know anything else regarding her state of mind. The pseudocyesis, the belief in false pregnancy, certainly has come up in court, that`s defense. The crime scene, it was horrendous, by any account. The sheriff testified. Her mother got on the stand, broke down. It was a shocking crime.

And, actually, they finally traced, when they arrived and tracked down Lisa Montgomery, they had permission to search her car from her, and they found a rope inside her car with blood and hair on it and, of course, the kitchen knife that`s been mentioned with blood that matched the DNA of all three, Montgomery, of Stinnett, and the baby. So there`s strong forensic evidence linking it, so the defense is backing up with the insanity plea.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have another friend that`s a breeder down in Kansas that has had dealings with Lisa and had problems with her. And Bobbie Jo being the trusting person that she was asked this lady to give her another chance, and she did, and she had more problems with her. But Bobbie stood up for Lisa, trying to say, "Maybe it was a mistake. Maybe you should give her another chance." They knew each other. They definitely knew each other.

I honestly don`t think Bobbie Jo knew that it was going to be her, because I don`t believe that Bobbie Jo would have sold her a puppy or even let her come to the house to look at a puppy with that in mind.

The group picture with both of them in it that was taken at the Easter show also in Abilene, Kansas, they knew each other fairly well there.


GRACE: Out to the lines, Tammy in Ohio. Hi, Tammy.

CALLER: Hi, Nancy. Congratulations on the twins. And don`t worry, nothing like this should ever happen to you.

GRACE: You know what, after I saw that first story and I was reading about this trial, FedEx came to the door today. I just yelled through the door, "Go away! I don`t want it! I don`t know you, go, go, leave it!"

CALLER: You know, I can`t believe this woman is claiming insanity. The fact that she changed her identity online, the fact that Bobbie Jo Stinnett may have, God forbid, regained consciousness and fought for her life and that of her child, and everything else. And this woman has four other children, I can`t believe that anybody would ever, ever believe the insanity plea. This is absolutely ridiculous, and we`ve got to stop cutting these people a break.

GRACE: You know what, Tammy? I think the only reason they`re going with insanity is because they`ve got nowhere to go. The forensics are overwhelming. The computer evidence is overwhelming. What are they going to do? What I don`t get is why the two states have not charged her with capital murder.

What about it, Kirk? Kirk Wayman, why aren`t the states charging her with murder?

WAYMAN: Yes, I never have got an answer on that. The official charge, the federal charge is kidnapping resulting in death. But it is interesting, though, it`s not the kidnapped victim that died. In fact, as you mentioned, little Victoria Jo is alive and well today. It`s the mother that was strangled, and cut open, and died as a result of her unborn baby being kidnapped, so it`s kidnapping resulting in death.

GRACE: But, Kirk, they can get the federal death penalty for this, correct?

WAYMAN: Yes. In fact, prosecutors have said that, if she`s found guilty, they will pursue that.

GRACE: To Karen in Florida, hi, Karen.

CALLER: Hi, Nancy. You know, I`m a twin mom also of 19-month-old twins, and I wanted to say congratulations. It`s a wonderful experience.

GRACE: Hey, did they make it full term? When did you deliver?

CALLER: I delivered at 35 1/2 weeks. They were both under five pounds, but healthy as can be.

GRACE: OK. What`s your question?

CALLER: I just wanted to know, this is just one of the most heinous types of crimes to me out there. What`s the maximum penalty that we could give her if she`s found guilty?

GRACE: I know the death penalty, but as far as time behind bars, Kevin, what are we looking at, Kevin Miller?

MILLER: ... to the death penalty, Nancy.

GRACE: OK. If she`s behind bars, it would be life behind bars or the death penalty, if they comes back guilty as charged, out to Karen in Florida.


GRACE: To Headline Prime`s Glenn Beck. Hi, friend.

GLENN BECK, HOST: Congress has once again proved why its approval ratings are in the toilet: choosing to focus its energy on passing a resolution declaring the death of thousands of Armenians about 100 years ago at the hands of Turkey a genocide. Yes, yes. Well, great, while you`re trying so hard to end the war in Iraq, make sure you piss off one of our most important allies in the region in the process. No, that`s good thinking. That`s what I`d expect from Congress. And it leads neatly into my new theory, the greatest threat facing our country, you guessed it, politics. All that and more, coming up.

GRACE: According to police, she traveled over 100 miles to trick a pregnant woman eight months pregnant into letting her in the door, and then strangled her and cut her baby from her womb.

Lisa Montgomery, this is extremely rare, Robi Ludwig, to have a woman commit murder like this. It`s very rare statistically.

LUDWIG: It is very rare, but there are some woman, when they find out they can`t have a child, I think for this woman, pregnancy means something different for everybody. And I think a woman who`s disturbed, sometimes it can legitimize sex or having sex. I wonder if, for this woman, somehow with her abused childhood, somehow if she could prove she was pregnant, then the sex she was having made it OK. But it`s very scary out there, because you don`t know who`s going to be in this category of women.

GRACE: Everyone, let`s stop and remember Army Specialist Rachel Hugo, 24, Madison, Wisconsin, killed Iraq. A combat medic awarded an Army honors coin for saving a sergeant`s life earlier this year. E-mailed home often, loved care packages from home, dreamed of becoming a nurse, leaves behind parents, Kermit and Ruth, 19-year-old brother, Scott, grandmother, Carol, who she helped battle cancer. Rachel Hugo, American hero.

Thanks to our guests and most of all to you, for being with us. A special happy birthday to a Texas friend of the show, Sue. Happy birthday, Sue. Everyone, I`ll see you tomorrow night, 8:00 sharp Eastern. And until then, good night, friend.