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Australian Interrogation Tape Released in Honeymoon Scuba Death
Aired June 25, 2008 - 20:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: Tonight after a dream wedding, a romantic honeymoon featuring a couples dive trip turns deadly. There in the clear blue waters, far below the surface, the blushing bride sinks to the ocean floor while the brand-new groom makes it to the top to breathe in the fresh air and then home, home to collect what he believes to be a big, fat insurance check.
Tonight, just released, stunning video of the groom`s police interrogation emerges. And tonight, the bride`s family is with us live and taking your calls.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: From a fairy tale wedding to a nightmare honeymoon. Newlyweds Tina and Gabe Watson head out on a scuba diving adventure on the Great Barrier Reef. But just minutes later, the beautiful bride ends up dead on the bottom of the ocean. The suspected murderer, her husband of just 11 days.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He had shut of his bride`s air supply until she was either dead or near dead, according to the authorities in Australia, and only then did he go for help.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Investigators say Watson`s version of what happened Down Under doesn`t add up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Gabe Watson told the police that he rocketed to the top of the surface to raise the alarm, but someone who was there on the scene said he rose very gradually and in a very controlled fashion.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: His air supply wasn`t stopped working, so he could just do whatever he wants. So he was breathing, so he would have been able to assist her.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One of the motives out there in this murder mystery is money, specifically a life insurance policy. But one thing we know for sure tonight, an arrest warrant will be issued for Gabe Watson.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We`re just one step closer...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One step closer.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... to getting justice and peace for Tina.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: And tonight, North Carolina police investigating the death of a gorgeous young 23-year-old Army specialist, 7 months pregnant, Megan Lynn Touma, her body found in a local Fairfield Inn. As we await an official cause of death, we learn Touma actually requesting transfer to Ft. Bragg from Germany just days before her sudden and unexpected death. Tonight: What happened to 23-year-old Megan Lynn Touma?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At 7 months pregnant, Army soldier Megan Touma checked into a local hotel room but never checked out, cops calling the soon-to-be-mom`s death suspicious. Police responded to the hotel Saturday after complaints of a strong odor coming from room 143 the Fayetteville Fairfield Inn, cops making a shocking discovery, the pregnant soldier found dead. Police believe she may have been dead at least two days. Touma in the U.S. less than two weeks after serving overseas, protecting America`s freedoms.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We`re shocked, first and foremost. And you know, it`s just always bad when you lose a soldier. And on top of that, you know, here`s a beautiful young woman. She`s 7 months pregnant. It`s - - it`s just -- it bad and deeply troubling. We want to find out what happened to her, make sure that, you know, we and her family get all the answers that we can to find out what happened here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Good evening. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us. After a dream wedding, a romantic honeymoon featuring a couples dive trip turned deadly. The blushing bride sinks to the ocean floor. The brand-new groom? Well, he makes it to the top.
Just released, stunning video of the groom`s police interrogation emerges. And tonight, the bride`s family is with us live.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tina and Gabe Watson were married here in Alabama and went to Australia to celebrate their honeymoon. Just 11 days after they tied the knot, Tina Watson and her new husband, Gabe, went on a scuba dive to explore a shipwreck along Australia`s Great Barrier Reef. And then something went terribly wrong and 26-year-old Tina Watson lost her life in the crystal waters off Australia, Gabe Watson telling authorities his bride drowned, that it was a catastrophic accident, a tragedy. But now nearly five years later, Gabe Watson stands accused of murder.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There were about 16 different versions of events that Gabe gave the police. Some of them were that Tina panicked or that they decided to swim against the current, that she got into difficulties down there, that Gabe got into difficulties, that he couldn`t bring her to the surface, that he then took his time getting to the surface. It appears that he almost got confused in those final moments as to what he wanted his apparent story to be, so many inconsistencies over such a long period of time that the police really wanted to build a strong case against Gabe.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And you never think that your daughter will leave for her honeymoon and her husband will kill her, that she`ll come home, that she`ll have a great time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Joining us tonight are two very special guests. With us is Tina Watson`s father, Tommy Thomas. Also along with us, Tina`s sister, Alanda Thomas. To both of you, thank you for being with us.
ALANDA THOMAS, TINA`S SISTER: Thank you.
TOMMY THOMAS, TINA`S FATHER: Thank you for having us.
GRACE: Mr. Thomas, I know that you and your daughter, your whole family are completely destroyed by her death. And first of all, I want to offer you our prayers and our sympathy. I remember when I learned to dive, my first open water dive was one of the scariest things I`ve ever done.
When she went away to Australia, Mr. Thomas, and you knew that she was going on a dive trip, were you concerned?
TOMMY THOMAS: Very concerned. This was something that I had never dreamed that she would want to do.
GRACE: Had she ever mentioned it before she started dating the suspect?
TOMMY THOMAS: Absolutely not. She began taking diving lessons in January of `03, when they were dating. And it was actually before they got engaged. But when she first told me about it, I was really surprised, sort of taken back. And I asked her why in the world she would want to take diving lessons because she just wasn`t the athletic type. She was more of a girly girl and liked to shop and do the things that girls do. She was a romantic. She just wasn`t the athletic type. And she told me that Gabe had told her that if she wanted him to do the things that she liked to do, that she needed to do what he liked to do. And he liked to dive, so she need to take diving lessons.
GRACE: So he told her she needed to learn to dive for their relationship?
TOMMY THOMAS: That`s correct. And actually, a month or so later, when I met him and he was going to state (ph) with me about asking for her hand in marriage, he actually told me the same thing.
GRACE: He said what?
TOMMY THOMAS: I told him that I really wasn`t happy with the diving lessons. I didn`t think that it was a thing that Tina had ever wanted to do. I didn`t particularly consider it all that safe, and I had the impression that she really wasn`t enjoying it that much. And I asked him about it, and he basically told me the same thing that she had told me, that, you know, there were things that she liked to do, and if she wanted him to do them with her, that she needed to do what he liked to do, and he liked to dive.
GRACE: Well, I`ve got to tell you, Mr. Thomas -- with me tonight is not only the bride`s father but her sister, very dear to her both of them. Mr. Thomas, my family begged me, Please do not dive, please do not go to the other side of the world to dive, don`t do this to us. But I was trying to overcome a fear of water. I nearly drowned when I was a little girl and I wanted to learn how to dive.
And I`ve got to tell you, the first time at the bottom of the YMCA pool, when I learned to dive, you have to take off your mask totally under water and stay there and then put the mask back on and clear all the water out and resume breathing. One of the scariest things I`ve ever done.
And I`m just imaging if she was scared, too, which her instructor -- I`m reading in the "People" magazine set to come out this weekend. Her instructor, Kleckler (ph), Craig Kleckler (ph), recalls she was petrified. She was in four feet of water and she was holding onto the pier, she was so afraid when she was learning to dive, Mr. Thomas.
TOMMY THOMAS: That`s correct. That`s the evidence that we heard. And I had not heard that before. We went to the coronial hearing, but that`s the evidence that Mr. Kleckler gave at the coronial hearing, as well. And it was quite shocking for us because we had questioned Tina about it quite a bit. I mean, I just -- I really wanted her to stop doing it. And she kept telling us that she had to do it. And then it was a thing of she started telling us that, you know, she was liking part of it. And to me, it was more like she was just telling me that because she knew that I was concerned.
GRACE: Well, to you, Alanda. With us is Tina`s sister. I noticed that when the dive instructor said, You`re so afraid, why are you doing this? She said, If I don`t do it, my boyfriend will kill me. Did you hear that, Alanda?
ALANDA THOMAS: She never told that to me, but I have heard that as part of the evidence.
GRACE: What was their relationship like, Alanda?
ALANDA THOMAS: It was -- to me, it was worrisome. I didn`t think that he treated her like she deserved to be treated. I don`t think that he treated her with respect most of the time.
GRACE: For instance? What`s an example?
ALANDA THOMAS: Well, just every time that she was, say, with me, I mean, he constantly called, would call one right after the other, after the other, until she would finally answer the phone. And then you could tell on the other end that he was not happy with her, and she would always get off the phone upset. In the same instances, if she was on the phone with him and you were to step in a room and say something to her, he would hang up the phone on her.
GRACE: He`d hang up the phone on her?
ALANDA THOMAS: Yes, because someone else was speaking to her.
GRACE: Listen, don`t get me wrong, I`m not saying because they argued or he hung up on the phone on her that that is evidence of a murder.
ALANDA THOMAS: Right.
GRACE: I`m just trying to find out what kind of relationship they had.
Mr. Thomas, when you first -- first of all, how did you learn your girl had died in a dive accident on her honeymoon?
TOMMY THOMAS: I was in Tallahassee, Florida, working with one of our local office management teams, and received a call at 8:36 that morning from Gabe`s father, David.
GRACE: So the father called you? The groom did not call you?
TOMMY THOMAS: That is correct. David called, I answered the phone, and the conversation was, Tommy, are you at the office? Are you still at the hotel? I said, I`m at the office. He then...
GRACE: Did you know at that moment -- when he said that, did you suspect something was wrong?
TOMMY THOMAS: Honestly, no.
GRACE: OK. What happened?
TOMMY THOMAS: The next thing he said is, Are you alone, or are there people around? And I remember thinking -- the thought went through my mind, Where is this going? And I said, Well, I`m in the office, people are around, but I can talk. And he said, I don`t know any other way of telling you this. There`s been an accident. Tina drowned. Here`s my preacher. And he handed the phone to his pastor.
GRACE: Alanda, when did you learn your sister had drowned on her honeymoon?
ALANDA THOMAS: I actually had went to work that morning, on the 22nd. And I walked into where me and Tina both worked together, and everyone was looking at me in disbelief. And someone finally took me and took me to the store manager, and he told me that Tina had been in an accident and I needed to get ahold of one of our parents. And that`s how I found out.
GRACE: Everyone, with me tonight are the parents (SIC) of a beautiful girl who was afraid. She was afraid, but yet she was incredibly brave. She went ahead and completed these classes and then went all the way to the Great Barrier Reef at the urging of her groom-to-be.
Back to Mr. Thomas. Mr. Thomas, when she dived that day, was that her first open water dive?
TOMMY THOMAS: It was her first dive in salt water, to my understanding. She had been diving at blue water, and I think that`s considered as open water diving.
GRACE: Correct. The day when she died, Mr. Thomas, was that the first dive trip of the vacation? Was that the first time they`d gone down under water?
TOMMY THOMAS: It was actually the first stop for the dive trip. Depending on the evidence -- I mean, Gabe had told us it was their very first dive. They had actually gone in for a very brief minute to minute- and-a-half dive prior to that dive, I found out later, and had surfaced because he had said that his computer was beeping. He didn`t tell me that. I found that in evidence.
GRACE: Everyone, we are taking your calls live.
Mr. Thomas, have you seen this video of his police interrogation? Have you read his various inconsistencies in what he said?
TOMMY THOMAS: We were in Townsville, Australia, for the entire coronial hearing, and yes, I did.
GRACE: What do you make of it?
TOMMY THOMAS: You know, when we went to Townsville for the coronial hearing, I actually thought I knew most of what we were going to hear. And we were confronted with the two statements that he made to police, his civil deposition under oath in his civil case in Alabama with Travel X (ph) and Old Republic (ph) Insurance. And I just -- I really could not believe the contradictions and inconsistencies from one statement to the next, compared to what we were...
GRACE: What was the biggest one -- what was the biggest one you recall?
TOMMY THOMAS: There were several. So as far as the biggest -- I -- I really didn`t like him.
GRACE: I understand.
TOMMY THOMAS: It`s just shocking to...
GRACE: Alanda, what did you think? Alanda, what did you think? Everyone, they traveled all the way to Australia for the hearing. What struck you as the most inconsistent, Alanda?
TOMMY THOMAS: There was a lot. I wasn`t actually there in person to hear it. I have read through them, though. But one -- one of the main ones, I would say, is how from the first time he spoke to the police to the second, he had changed his story about the currents.
GRACE: Well, you know, it`s really interesting that -- you`re seeing, everyone, a shot that another couple took under water. And speaking from experience, when you have a strong current, nobody is taking underwater photos, all right? That about the current, I`m telling you, simply is not true.
Take a listen to this. When we get back, we`re going to have sound from that interrogation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Gabe himself was a qualified rescue diver. Now, he had at least 50 dives under his belt. Tina was a novice. She`d only been down a few times, and apparently had been a little bit skeptical about going on this dive trip. But apparently, the current became quite strong down there. Gabe said that Tina started panicking and flailing about. And police really weren`t sure what his evidence was going to be. Now, he declined to give evidence in the inquest. He had the opportunity to take the stand and testify, but he claimed privilege.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: We are set right now to play you sound from his interrogation. I`m referring to the groom. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GABE WATSON, HUSBAND: ... had both her arms out, you know, reached -- stretched up, you know, almost like looking at me, reaching her arms up to grab. So I kind of upended myself, you know, head first. And I remember going down, you know, reaching, and at this point, I was thinking, you know, I`m going to grab ahold of her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Well, what happened? You`re going to grab ahold of her and take her up? You`re only 50 feet under. What happened? you make it to the top, she sinks to the bottom? You`re seeing video from MSNBC.com and Townsville police in Australia of Gabe Watson after the drowning of his bride. He appears to show no emotion whatsoever, describing what he says happened when she sank to the bottom of the ocean.
With us tonight, her father and her sister. I want to go to Steve Bielenda, certified scuba instructor and expert witness all over the country. We are taking your calls live. Steve, that`s complete BS. All this business about a strong current? This is a dive where they all went down a chain from the bottom of the boat, which was anchored at the bottom. Nobody else was having a problem. Other people could pause mid-water, continue with their flippers and take photos. You can`t do that in a strong current.
STEVE BIELENDA, CERTIFIED SCUBA INSTRUCTOR, EXPERT WITNESS: Well, he says that he was looking down at her and she was raising her arms up towards him. Well, if she was in a strong current, she would have been washing away from him. She wouldn`t have been just standing still down there. She would have been being flowing away in the current. She wasn`t moving in the current. She was standing still. He almost says it by saying she was just there with her arms raised.
So I think -- I don`t think we had a strong current. If you look at that original picture, you`ll see the air bubbles go straight to the surface.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The stories changed multiple times, and that is part of why it took so long to get us to where we are today. Gabe Watson gave conflicting stories to the authorities in Australia, that the current swept his bride away, that she sank too quickly, that ear problems stopped him from going after her. And they had to go through all of these stories and check them out, and eventually, they began seeing inconsistencies.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: We are taking your calls live. Out to Rita in Washington. Hi, Rita.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Nancy. I have a question. I`m just kind of curious as to why it`s taken so long for him to be charged.
GRACE: Excellent question. Let`s go to Jim Faherty with WERC radio. Jim, why so long for Australia to finally charge?
JIM FAHERTY, WERC RADIO: Well, you know, Nancy, he has changed his version of what happened about 15 or 16 times. And just earlier, I heard the discussion of the second statement Gabe Watson gave to police, where he was talking about the currents and how the currents were much stronger than he had anticipated. But in his previous statement, Gabe Watson said that the currents were not very strong.
Then he also offered that story about his ears hurting too much to go down to the sea floor. Then you have the fact that Gabe Watson is a rescue diver, yet he seemed to be in a panic. And he made that statement that Tina was too heavy for him to get to the surface. But of course, as you know, Nancy, that would not have been an issue under water, where weight is not an issue. And Gabe Watson says he rocketed to the surface, but other divers say he took his time.
Well, authorities had to go through all of these stories, and it became a very complex investigation.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: There was witnesses in that dive group who say they saw Gabe giving Tina a bear hug or holding her underwater for about 30 seconds before her lifeless body then sunk to the bottom of the ocean.
Police reenacted that bear hug under water and they have said that there could have been time in that 30 seconds for Gabe to have switched the oxygen off.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We hang together.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We stay strong, in family, in God, in prayer.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Lots of that.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lots of that. Lots of that.
GRACE: With us tonight, the bride`s father and sister.
We are taking your calls live. Out to Jimmy in Oklahoma. Hi, Jimmy.
JIMMY, OKLAHOMA RESIDENT: Hi, Nancy, I love your show.
GRACE: Thank you, dear. What`s your question?
JIMMY: My condolences to the parents, first of all.
GRACE: Yes. Yes.
JIMMY: Yes, my question is, are you all going to take out a civil suit against the groom?
GRACE: Excellent question. Mr. Thomas, have you considered that yet?
TOMMY THOMAS, FATHER OF THE BRIDE TINA WATSON: Nancy, we`ve been focused primarily on the.
THOMAS: . on the coronial hearing at this point.
THOMAS: Our primary objective has been to see the investigation through, attend the coronial hearing, and see the evidence for our self and try to get a handle on the true picture of what happened to Tina as close to this -- to it.
GRACE: And you know what, Mr. Thomas, people keep saying, why did it take so long? That was my initial reaction. What took so long? But the reality is, in a drowning death, it`s very difficult to show was it an accident or was it a homicide?
So just getting the autopsy report was not sufficient to prove this case. This is a case, in their defense, and believe me, if I didn`t believe this, I wouldn`t be telling you. In their defense, this is the kind of case that takes a long time to put together. It really does.
It`s a totally circumstantial case and circumstantial evidence is just as strong as direct evidence, but it takes longer to obtain it. So your focus has been on this portion, correct?
THOMAS: Absolutely, Nancy. And the fact of the matter is that there was also the challenges that the Queensland police service faced with the fact that there were three boats in the area with divers that day.
The Adrenaline was a third boat. And the divers were just beginning to go into water. There was the (INAUDIBLE) sport, which had been there overnight, and then there was the Jazz II, which had come up at the last moment after Gabe and Tina were already in the water and anchored and put divers into the water immediately because it`s a day tripper.
The fact of the matter is that the Queensland police service had the challenge of actually having to locate each one of those divers, as well as the crew members from those three boats, and interview each one on numerous occasions. And part of that challenge was the fact that they were from all over the world, coming from Korea.
GRACE: All over the world.
THOMAS: Right. Korea, South Africa, Israel, Europe, United States.
GRACE: Wow. But they did it. But they did it.
THOMAS: But they did it.
GRACE: And it sounds like they put together everything they`ve got.
I want to go to Sergeant Brad Flynn, lead investigator from the Helena Police Department.
Sergeant Flynn, every story he`s given as a diver -- I guess I`ve dived well over 100 times. Every story he`s given as to why he didn`t save her is BS. Number one, the whole thing about the ears. They were only 50 feet. All right? At about 30 feet, you may -- when you go through pressure changes about every 30 feet, you may have a little discomfort.
Between ear discomfort and saving your wife, there`s really not a contest. And also, if he was already at 50 feet, he should have already overcome any ear pressure. All you have to do is take a Sudafed to get past that. It`s really not that difficult.
Then the thing about the current. Well, that`s BS because you can see in the photos that there`s not a current. As just pointed out -- earlier by Steve Bielinda, the air bubbles in the photos the others took were going straight up. That would not be true if a current was pushing it forward.
SGT. BRAD FLYNN, LEAD INVESTIGATOR, HELENA POLICE DEPT.: That`s correct.
GRACE: What do you make of his various stories?
FLYNN: It just doesn`t add up. If this happened the way that Mr. Watson said it happened, it would have been very easy for the police to be able to reconstruct everything, to be able to examine the evidence, and be able to say, you know what? We agree, this is a tragic accident. That hasn`t been the case in this matter.
GRACE: And back to Steve Bielinda, certified scuba instructor, he`s an expert witness all over the country. Steve, the more I hear of what he said -- I`m going to unleash the lawyers in just a moment, Steve. The worst his story is getting, it`s stinking more and more every time I hear him say something else.
To claim you can`t rescue somebody at 50 feet, that`s nothing. That`s like skipping down the hall 50 feet. You can`t pull somebody up. They are weightless under the water at 50 feet.
And another thing, Steve Bielinda, he said he skyrocketed with his buoyancy control, you can push a button and your vest blows up with air, that he skyrocketed up to the top. His dive computer says it took him three minutes. He paddled his way up to the top.
STEVE BIELINDA, EXPERT WITNESS, CERTIFIED SCUBA INSTRUCTOR: I think he actually floated up. I don`t think he actually paddled up. I think he just drifted up to the surface. And he never -- you know, from what I`ve seen -- and I haven`t seen the factual evidence -- he never attempted to rescue her.
He must have had his motive to what he was going to do and he did it. If he was going to rescue her, he would have offered her his air supply, he would have went for his buoyancy inflator and inflated it. And he would have done those things.
GRACE: Steve, Steve, at the very least, even if someone -- and people saw this happen. They said he bear hugged her and as she fell backwards, at the very least when somebody is fighting with you and you`re trying to save their life, you can take them from behind. Or you can hold on to their vest and start swimming up. Or take your air off and give it to them. Everything he`s saying is making his story less plausible.
BIELINDA: It`s correct. He never attempted to do or give any service, any help at all. And being distressed under water, her primal thing would have been to kick her fins very hard.
BIELINDA: . and go to the surface. And that would have been the primal thing if she was in distress. While she was panicking, that`s she would have done.
GRACE: Hey, Steve, really quickly before we go to break, there is a theory that when he hugged her, as you`re seeing in this reenactment, he turned the air supply off. Is there any way to determine once you get her tank whether the air supply had been turned off?
BIELINDA: No, not really, because what he did was once you turn it off and you turn it back on, and unless they forensic the valve exactly when they did it.
GRACE: At that moment.
BIELINDA: At the moment and seen how far on or how far off it was would have been the only way.
GRACE: Man. OK. Out to the lines, Carla in Oregon, Hi, Carla.
CARLA, OREGON RESIDENT: Hi, God bless your babies.
GRACE: Thank you.
CARLA: Here`s my -- sorry, my dogs. Here`s my question or comment, if you watch the tape of the wedding ceremony in slow motion, just that little snip-it where they`re saying their vows, she has a smile on her face, but she is terrified. She`s -- she is having a hard time breathing. Has anyone else noticed that?
GRACE: Let`s go to Dr. Lillian Glass, psychologist and author of "I Know What You`re Thinking." Lillian, what do you make of it? Have you seen that video?
LILLIAN GLASS, PSYCHOLOGIST, AUTHOR OF "I KNOW WHAT YOU`RE THINKING": That is a great observation because that`s exactly true. She is terrified. You could tell by her body language. And you can also see something when he`s interrogated. You can look at his body language there where something just doesn`t seem right, like he`s not telling the truth.
GRACE: Let`s unleash the lawyers. Joining us tonight, at Atlanta Renee Rockwell, also a veteran diver, and Alan Ripka, defense attorney out of New York. He`s no stranger to a courtroom.
Renee, what do you think?
RENEE ROCKWELL, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, Nancy, first of all, I don`t like it at all that they`re trying him on the media over there in Australia by reenacting.
GRACE: Whoa, whoa, whoa, wait, wait, wait. Why do you believe that he`s being tried in the media?
ROCKWELL: This reenactment, Nancy, of this diving trip with them showing the bear hug and giving all of these scenarios what may or may not have happened. That`s just a little bit too much on a small island like that where they`re going to see it and see it again. That`s where he`s going to be tried.
But Nancy, here`s the first rule of defense. You never let your client make a statement. Don`t forget, Nancy, he`s involved in a lawsuit right now where he sued the insurance company. So not only does the statement that he gave to the police.
GRACE: Well, that right there, Alan Ripka, she`s right. Look, horrible for him. What does he do? Is he mourning his wife? Oh, no, oh, no. He`s suing to try to get a little money, Alan.
ALAN RIPKA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, you know, that brings us to the most important point. He had no motive to do this. Here`s a guy who gets married 11 days earlier and now he wants to kill his wife. And he wasn`t the beneficiary of any life insurance policy.
And by the way, the witness who saw him hugging his wife under water never said that the wife struggled, Nancy. Not once.
GRACE: Hold on. Back to the father, Tommy Thomas, isn`t it true that the groom asked the wife to increase the value of her insurance policy and make him the beneficiary?
THOMAS: There was group insurance through her employer at work. And about a week prior to the wedding, she had told me that he had asked her to increase it to the maximum and change the beneficiary to her.
GRACE: I want to go straight to Dr. Daniel Spitz, medical examiner.
Dr. Spitz, is there any way looking at autopsy you can determine if air supply was suddenly cut off?
DR. DANIEL SPITZ, MEDICAL EXAMINER & FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST: No, you really can`t. The cause of death in this case looks to be a drowning death.
Now sorting out how that happened is really the difficult part of this. You know, you can look at the circumstances and that`s what`s being done. And the only thing that really implicates the husband is the fact that his story has changed multiple times.
This whole bear hug under water and him potentially turning off the air supply is really speculation. So I think the prosecution`s going to have a tough time with only having evidence being that his story changed.
GRACE: Mike Brooks, I disagree with Spitz, because a witness states husband bear hugs wife.
MIKE BROOKS, FMR. DC POLICE DETECTIVE SERVED ON FBI TERRORISM TASK FORCE: Right.
GRACE: .. and then she falls to the bottom of the ocean. That`s not speculation. So there is a witness, an impartial witness that observed this.
BROOKS: That`s exactly right, Nancy. And he saw her eyes get wide before she dropped away from him and saw the inaction of her husband who`s the rescue diver.
My hat`s off to the Queensland police for putting together such a good case after this amount of time, Nancy, because it does take a long time to develop a case such as this, especially with another country.
GRACE: Out to the lines, Joan in Maryland. Hi, Joan.
JOAN, MARYLAND RESIDENT: Hi, Nancy, my gosh, it`s so great talking with you.
GRACE: It`s nice to have you call in.
JOAN: Oh, and your babies are precious.
GRACE: Thank you.
JOAN: I have a quick question.
GRACE: Yes, dear?
JOAN: You can see her lying at the.
JOAN: . the floor of the ocean. Why didn`t some of the other divers say the heck with him and go help her?
GRACE: You know, I`ve got to tell you something, Joan, one of my favorite places to be when diving was lying on the floor of the ocean looking for shells, watching sea horses down there.
Jim Faherty, did they realize, the other divers, that anything was wrong?
JIM FAHERTY, NEWS DIRECTOR, WERC RADIO: It`s not clear that they did, although that one diver, Dr. (INAUDIBLE), did see that the look of horror, apparently, on Tina Watson`s face. And that calls into question Gabe Watson`s claim.
FAHERTY: . in that video interrogation that he gave them a distress signal, the other divers, but they weren`t able to see it. How could they not be able to see it if they were close enough to see the expression on her face?
GRACE: Everyone, we are taking your calls live. Before we go to our next story, I want to go back to Tommy Thomas and Alanda Thomas, the father and sister.
What is next, Mr. Thomas? What do you believe will happen next?
THOMAS: Next, we go through the process of seeing the arrest warrant processed from Australia to here. At some point, it should turn into an extradition process.
THOMAS: And then Tina will have her day of justice in court. There`ll be a criminal trial and hopefully he will even testify and we will hear from him.
GRACE: Alanda, you not only lost a sister, but a best friend. You guys worked together, you lived together. What is your life like now without her?
ALANDA THOMAS, SISTER OF BRIDE TINA WATSON: It`s broken. Completely different. I feel like a part of me is missing.
GRACE: And Mr. Thomas, you know, I thought I understood being a crime victim what crime victims go through until I had children. And my heart really goes out to you, thank you for being with us.
THOMAS: Thank you, Nancy.
GRACE: We are switching gears. Take a listen to this.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Another pregnant service member found dead in North Carolina. Specialist Megan Touma`s body was found Saturday morning in a motel room. They say it appeared she`d been dead for a couple of days. Touma was seven months pregnant. She`s been in North Carolina less than a couple of weeks. Before that she was stationed in Germany. Police so far are just calling her death suspicious.
GRACE: Straight out to Brian Mims with WRAL. What is the latest?
BRYAN MIMS, REPORTER, CNN AFFILIATE WRAL: Well, we expected to hear from police in a news conference today. But they decided to hold off on that until they get autopsy results from the state and medical examiner.
Police told us over the weekend that the state of decomposition of her body was such that they couldn`t tell how she died. They didn`t notice any evidence of trauma such as knife wounds or bullet wounds, so police are holding off on making any public statements about this until they get results back from the state medical examiner.
GRACE: And very quickly.
MIMS: And we expect those to come.
GRACE: Very quickly, Bryan, do we know if any video has been obtained from the Fairfield Inn?
MIMS: We don`t know. Police have not told us whether they have obtained any surveillance video from the Fairfield Inn. We have tried to speak with employees and guests at the motel, but they have declined to comment.
She did -- it`s not clear exactly when she checked in there. We`re told by Ft. Bragg officials that she was offered barrack space on post, but she decided instead to live at a hotel for the time being.
GRACE: Bryan Mims is joining us there in Fayetteville, North Carolina with WRAL.
To Connie Nelson, she`s a family friend who knows Megan Lynn Touma very, very well -- Connie, first of all, our condolences to you and the family. The big question in my mind is, did she have a boyfriend? Who is the father of this baby?
CONNIE NELSON, FAMILY FRIEND OF MEGAN LYNN TOUMA: First off, I want to say I respect Megan`s family and their privacy.
NELSON: Megan left right out of high school to join the service. And of course, we lost touch through that time. The last I talked to Megan she was married, brought her husband to meet me at my beauty salon, and recently I found out that Megan was divorced.
So I`m not sure of any of the personal issues. I`m not sure.
GRACE: Right. Right. I would think that the father would be on the scene by now trying to find out what had happened. How is her family doing?
NELSON: They`ve recently moved in the last couple of weeks to Kansas. So I have not spoken to them. So it`s just a sad, sad day.
GRACE: Straight back out to a friend of the victim`s family. What was Megan like in life?
NELSON: Megan was an absolutely sweet, talented, beautiful young lady who just had the whole world to live for. I can`t imagine what her family`s going through right now. My heart goes out to them.
GRACE: Very quickly, I want to go to Gurnall Scott. Do we know anything about the father, Gurnall?
GURNALL SCOTT, REPORTER, WPTF RADIO: What we are trying to figure out with her being seven months pregnant at the time of her death, we heard from a news conference today that she was divorced in 2007. We`re trying to do the math and try to find out if the father of the child had anything to do.
SCOTT: . and get a time line going to see if we can pinpoint as to who may be the father, was there a boyfriend, was there a relationship?
GRACE: Well, whoever it was, her family is unfamiliar with it.
To military legal analyst, Omar Ashmawy -- Omar, is the military going to be involved in the investigation or prosecution at all?
OMAR ASHMAWY, MILITARY LEGAL ANALYST: Hey, Nancy. Absolutely. There`s no question in my mind that the military`s already on the ground. They`ve been on the ground since the very first moment her body was discovered. And they`re doing everything they can to assist local authorities in making sure they capture whoever did this.
GRACE: To Connie Nelson -- Miss Nelson, we want to thank you for being with us. And also our prayers go out to you and her family.
Everyone, let`s stop and remember Army Corporal Luke Runyan, 21, Spring Grove, Pennsylvania, killed, Iraq. Awarded the Army Achievement medal, National Defense Service medal, Army Service Ribbon, saved an Iraqi boy in the line of fire. Loved hunting, motorcycles, surfing.
Leaves behind parents, Mark and Lynette, widow Courtney, and 1-year-old daughter, Bren.
Luke Runyan, American hero.
Thanks to our guests, but especially to you for inviting us into your home. And tonight, please pray for veteran defense attorney and friend Sandy Schiff. She`s in the fight of her life. She has had a set back in her battle with cancer and is now back in the hospital.
Sandy, stay strong and come back to us soon.
Everyone, I`ll see you tomorrow night, 8:00 sharp Eastern and until then, good night, friend.