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Was Annie Le`s Killer Obsessed?; O.J.`s Girlfriend Sheds Light on Violent Relationship

Aired September 15, 2009 - 19:00:00   ET



JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, closing in on a killer. Cops in New Haven appear to be honing in on Annie Le`s murderer. The Yale student and bride-to-be set to be married on Sunday, the same day police discovered her body stuffed inside a wall. Investigators say no students are involved.

Newest published reports claim an individual has defensive wounds and failed a polygraph. That could explain how the murderer gained access to the secured building on campus. But so far police are denying those reports.

Disturbing insight into the destructive life of O.J. Simpson. The accused killer`s ex-girlfriend pulls back the curtain on their abusive, drug-fueled relationship, telling "Inside Edition" O.J. hit her and threatened to shoot her if she ever left him. And she said, in so many words, O.J. admitted that he killed his ex-wife, Nicole, and Ron Goldman. You will not believe why she stayed with him more than a decade.

And we are moving on to toxic secrets from the legendary singer Whitney Houston. She pours out her soul to Oprah Winfrey, exposing her hard-core drug addiction and her abusive marriage to Bobby Brown, including details she smoked rock cocaine and was shocked when Bobby spat on her, right in front of her own daughter.

So is Whitney now clean and sober? Are her "crack is whack" days finally behind her?

Plus, we`re talking Kanye West. He hit rock bottom. The hit star told Jay Leno he was taking some time off to figure out his life one day after he was seen chugalugging booze on the red carpet and making a fool of himself at the MTV Video Music Awards. So is this guy for real? And does time off mean rehab?

ISSUES starts right now.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight anxiety and anguish in the wake of a savage murder at one of America`s most prestigious universities. An arrest of the suspect who slaughtered Annie Le could come at any time now. The monster who murdered the 24-year-old Yale University grad student and bride-to-be and then stuffed her body inside of a wall in the basement of a lab building where she worked.

Cadaver dogs found her Sunday, the very day she was set to get married.

As tonight, we are showing you this heartbreaking home video from ABC`s "Good Morning America." Take a look at it. There she is. New Haven police are saying they`re looking at a number of individuals.

Meantime, Annie Le`s roommate shared her own theory with ABC News.


VANESSA FLORES, ANNIE LE`S FORMER ROOMMATE: The only thing I can possibly think of right now it`s -- it`s maybe a psychopath. An antisocial person who, I don`t know, maybe got upset about what she wrote about back in February and about not about being safe and just kind of wanted to prove her wrong.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: So was Annie`s killer a love-sick psychopath, so obsessed he turned to murder? Could he have committed murder to prevent her from getting married, in a fit of jealousy? And how did the murderer commit this brutal crime? Investigators have blocked the release of the autopsy report to protect their investigation.

And tonight`s big issue here on ISSUES: the war on women and society`s responsibility to make us women, who comprise more than half the U.S. population and who pay a whole lot of taxes. When are they going to make us feel safe? We`ve had it with violence against women, and I hope you women join me and call in and emphasize that.

Straight out to my fantastic expert panel: Wendy Murphy, former prosecutor and author of "And Justice for Some"; Casey Jordan, criminologist and former criminal profiler; Stacey Honowitz, supervisor of the sex crimes unit in the Florida prosecutor`s office; Michelle Gorman, psychologist; and Mary Snow, CNN correspondent on the ground in New Haven, Connecticut.

Mary, what is the very latest?

MARY SNOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Jane, this has been a day of conflicting reports. Indications had been that perhaps police were zeroing in on a suspect. But tonight still no arrests. And a senior police officer in the New Haven Police Department tells CNN that this afternoon there had been no arrest warrant, and this officer was also saying that the circle is expanding of people who are being interviewed and, at last count, that number topped more than 200 people.

Now this as the investigation obviously continues. It`s very visible in Middletown, Connecticut. There were police officers at a home. Neighbors reporting that a police had descended on a home. Lots of questions about what they were doing. Police keeping tight-lipped on what that was about.

We also saw police, once again, go to the home of Annie Le.

But one other thing, too, is that police are now saying that they are going to begin having briefings twice -- two times a day. The big question is, does this mean that this process is going to be -- are they in for the long haul? Perhaps, or are they not as close to an arrest as many people had thought, by having two press conferences now scheduled every day -- Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I think you`re raising some fascinating points. And sometimes wishful thinking contributes to misreporting, if in fact, investigators are not as far ahead as, let`s say, newspaper columnists want them to be.

The murder of Annie Le brings to mind another slaying of a Yale University co-ed back in 1998, Yale senior Suzanne Jovin was stabbed to death 17 times in the back and the neck. Her body was discovered less than two miles from campus. More than a decade later, that murder remains unsolved.

But Mary Snow, going back to you. Authorities were criticized after that case for jumping on a particular suspect so soon and yet, then the case went cold, and no arrest was ever made. So would you -- would you conclude that they`re trying not to repeat that mistake this time around and to really get -- get everything -- all their ground work done before they jump to any conclusions?

SNOW: Well, this senior officer with the New Haven Police Department was asked about the concern about jumping to conclusions. And this was stressed as a concern.

This -- one of the things is the DNA evidence. Would officers jump out, make an arrest and then have evidence turn out to be contradicting? So there is concern about that.

And you know this officer also stressed that there is a lot of DNA evidence to go through. And also kind of contradicted what the president of Yale was saying yesterday. If you remember, he was addressing students, saying that there had been a very limited number of people that had access to that basement area where Annie Le`s body was found.

And this official is saying that, look, the circle has been expanding. And you know, this is more than 200 people that are being interviewed.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wendy Murphy, you`re the former prosecutor. You`ve covered so many of these cases. It is a danger to jump to a conclusion before you have the DNA results back. And my understanding is they`re waiting for the DNA. And that DNA will tell them whether any one of these individuals that they`re suspecting, their DNA, matches up with the clothes found in the wall or the ceiling tile, rather, where it`s believed the suspect`s bloody clothing was stuffed.

WENDY MURPHY, AUTHOR, "AND JUSTICE FOR ALL": That`s right. And also DNA tests on the body. Look, there`s no question that you want DNA tests to confirm what you think you already know.

But I think it`s a little nutty that you have a secured building, basically one door that you go in with a card. Some other doors but they`re locked, and surveillance cameras all over the place. There is no way 200 suspects were seen. You know it`s a very small, very finite number of people that they know were in that building at that time.

So I think it`s preposterous to continue to indulge the fear that some defense attorney six months from now will say, "You rushed to judgment." I`m so sick of that O.J. nonsense. If there really are only five people that were in that building, and they`ve eliminated four, and we`ve all heard talk of the likely suspect being somebody who worked there, I don`t know if those reports are true, but my goodness, if they can eliminate four out of five, what are they doing looking at 200?

Even if other people might be involved because there`s some conspiracy or some kind of bigger thing going on. There`s a killer out there. And you can`t keep telling the community that it`s OK, everybody`s safe and not arrest somebody.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Stacey Honowitz, they have also not released the autopsy reports in terms of revealing cause of death, because they say they want to protect their investigation. So how does keeping the cause of death secret help them when they`re interviewing a suspect?

STACEY HONOWITZ, SUPERVISOR OF SEX CRIMES UNIT, FLORIDA PROSECUTOR: Well, listen, they did come out and say that it was a homicide. We just don`t know how this homicide was committed.

But when they say that they`re protecting the investigation, they don`t ever want to get a false confession later down the line. They don`t want to have all the facts revealed to the public, to possible suspects, who then can just parrot back to them what they`ve already heard.

So the reason why they are having the press conferences and the briefings is I agree with Wendy. There`s got to be some kind of semblance as to this investigation. You`re hearing a number of things from various newspapers. You`re hearing that there`s a suspect, there was defensive wounds. All of these rumors need to be laid to rest to conduct a thorough investigation so they do get the right person.

So that`s why they have to keep the details and the autopsy report a secret at this point.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want to talk about the big issue, a war of terror against women in our society. Is this kind of crime a form of domestic terrorism? Or should violence against women be considered a hate crime? I think so.

Last night hundreds of Yale students and members of the community came together for a candlelight vigil in memory of Annie Le. Listen to what one of the women who attended had to say about the cold-blooded murder.


VICTORIA PEREZ, YALE STUDENT: Today during one of my classes my teacher was like for five minutes we called our parents and was like, "Hey, I`m OK and I love you," kind of thing.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know vigils have become a familiar ritual in the wake of these horrifying stories. Another ritual is, in the wake of crime like this, women in the same situation start living in fear, restricting their movements. It`s happening at Yale and other campuses.

It`s part of what I call the psychological burka that American women are forced to wear because of the rampant, unpredictable crime against them that can happen anywhere: at work, at school, in the home. And even though, Wendy Murphy, we`re more than 50 percent of the population, we cannot seem to get our government to take this issue more seriously.

MURPHY: And you know why, Jane? Because you, and you alone, are the one making noise about this. Have you heard anybody else call it domestic terrorism?


MURPHY: Thankfully you`re doing this, but listen, where are the politicians? Women die in extraordinary numbers in their own homes, on campuses at the hands of people they know, love and trust.

We call other targeted violence like that a hate crime. We put money all over it. We scream and yell when justice isn`t done against people who are black or Muslim, but when women die in large numbers, where are the protesters?

Why is this vigil being conducted by students? Where are the political leaders? Where`s President Obama? Where`s anybody who we elected to stand up for our rights? They are deadly silent. Shame on them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s women who have to get together as a gender. We are more than 50 percent of the population. We pay a heck of a lot of taxes. But nobody`s going to listen to us until we say what we want. And what we want is a world where violence against women isn`t taken as a given and where we don`t consider male violence as business as usual. That`s what I want.

I think that`s what peace-loving men want, and that`s what women want. But until we stand up and say we`re not going to take this anymore, I really believe that it`s going to continue.

I got an e-mail last night from a woman who said she was raped twice. Her rape kits have been lost. She was e-mailing me and saying, keep fighting. And that`s why I`m fighting for that woman and the others.

More on this in just a bit.

MURPHY: We should be marching in the streets. You`re absolutely right.


MURPHY: We should be outraged.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely. I want to hear what you at home have to say on all of this: 1-877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.

Coming up, Whitney Houston breaks her silence on her drug-induced past, so how is her recovery going?

Then, days after a gruesome and unsolved murder, how is the Yale community dealing with this horrific tragedy?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just the idea that a Yale student was killed in a busy academic building in broad daylight, it`s just really horrifying, I think, to everyone.




NATALIE POWERS, ANNIE LE`S FRIEND: She was tougher than you`d think by just looking at her. That this horrible tragedy happened at all is incomprehensible, but that it happened to her, I think is infinitely more so.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Annie Le, obviously, beloved, cherished by the friends in her college community. In high school she earned the distinction of most likely to be the next Einstein. These photos from the Union Mine High School yearbook in 2003.

At this hour, police reportedly zeroing on the monster who took Annie Le from her friends, family and fiance. People are outraged. Phone lines lighting up.

Beverly in Colorado, your question or thought, ma`am.

CALLER: Hi. I have two thoughts. One is about Annie Le. And being a pharmaceutical student, I`m sure she was involved. Somehow there were drugs in the department. Maybe when she went down to her office, she found somebody taking drugs. I mean, stealing them.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What`s your second theory?

CALLER: And my second thought is about self-defense for women, which is truly a passion for me. I think women cannot leave to chance, or to the authorities, their well-being. They either have to take some kind of self- defense classes or gun classes and get a concealed weapon permit. I am so tired of women being slaughtered.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely, Beverly. And I agree with you 100 percent.

Casey Jordan, criminologist. Here`s the problem: we`ve seen time after time that women who have taken self-defense courses have been murdered. And it can sometimes give them a false sense of security, because let`s face: it most men are physically torturing than women.

I think what we need to address is the fact that our culture equates masculinity with violence and also creates -- equates sex and violence. We have created a hunter-prey relationship in this country between men and women.

CASEY JORDAN, CRIMINOLOGIST: You`re exactly right. I`m so glad you used the word "culture." Because this has everything to do with how we raise young men and young women in our society.

And you`re right: self-defense classes are useful. There`s no downside to that. But a 300-pound man in theory against a 90-pound young woman, all the self-defense in the world isn`t going to help you unless you have a weapon or pepper spray.

But the bottom line is you have to ask the question. You used the word "prey" and that mentality. It is really how we raise men in our society. It bothers me...


JORDAN: ... you want to spend a lot of energy in teaching women how to defend themselves and look out. We need to be in a culture where women don`t have to worry about that, where they feel safe, because they know that men respect them and don`t look at them as potential victims of their aggression or their power.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Michelle Gorman, you`re the psychologist.

HONOWITZ: Women never even -- you know, I`m going to tell you something. I agree with everything that`s been said. I agree 100 percent with marching in the streets and maybe to make it a hate crime and maybe make the sentences longer, so it`s a deterrent.

But you have no idea -- and Wendy knows this -- how many times women are beaten up. They file charges, and then they decide they`re not going to go forward. And this sends a message also, that women have to be strong enough that if something happens to them, if it starts out as a small battery, it could escalate into a murder. That if you have to be able to go forward and be courageous and go to court and testify and that`s...

HONOWITZ: They shouldn`t be allowed...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Michelle Gorman.

HONOWITZ: Jane, that should not be allowed.

MICHELLE GORMAN, PSYCHOLOGIST: I want to go back to -- I want to go back to the word, respect. I love the concept respect, and I think that`s the missing piece, starting with day one. We`re already dealing with 4 out of 10 of our daughters being in domestic -- in dating relationships that are abusive at high school. We talk sex, but we forget to add that thing way back when that it`s relationships with respect, and that`s the bottom line to all of this. You respect that girl.


MURPHY: While working on fixing this culture, here`s how you get a little respect from the guys. You know what I`m saying. Women will wait forever till we cure the culture, and in the meantime the great equalizer is a weapon.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I didn`t see whatever you did.

MURPHY: Making a machine gun with my finger.


MURPHY: Jane, I know that you don`t like guns.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I don`t want to bring more violence into this world. We`ve already got enough. Let me tell you what a problem is, and a problem and I`ll go to...

MURPHY: It`s the only thing, while we`re waiting.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No, let me just say this, we live in a post-feminist culture where we`re all worried about our own careers, and our own jobs and our own families, we forget to unite as a gender to fight for ourselves as a gender. And the feminists who came before us did that, and the post- feminist culture doesn`t do it any more, and we`ve lost as a result. Women have to unite. That`s where you get power, if you unite.

MURPHY: But, Jane, you know what we`ve done wrong? You know what we`ve done wrong? We have let our government fail us over and over again. When the government fails to honor the equal protection of the laws, our constitutional rights.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I got to wrap it.

MURPHY: We have to hold them accountable and don`t do that as women.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do this again. You`re absolutely right.

Up next, Whitney Houston, no stranger to speaking her mind. Have you heard? She`s sober.

And O.J. Simpson, the latest Scooby Doo (ph). You will not believe what his girlfriend is saying.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Inside the toxic drug- and alcohol-fueled violent relationship between O.J. Simpson and girlfriend Christie Prody. Christine tells "Inside Edition" O.J. threatened her. She also claims he admitted to brutally murdering Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman.


JIM MORET, "INSIDE EDITION": Do you believe that O.J. Simpson killed Nicole and Ron?


MORET: When did you think to yourself, "I think he did it"?

PRODY: Couple of years ago.

MORET: Did he ever admit to you that he did it?

PRODY: In so many words, he did.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. Christine also says O.J. hit her. O.J. allegedly abuses women. That`s no surprise. Before she was murdered, Nicole Brown Simpson called 911. You can hear her screaming, "He`s going to beat me."

This is a monster who I believe got away with murder, and now he`s behind bars for a Las Vegas armed robbery. Christine says she felt safe enough to end their poisonous relationship.

Straight out to "Inside Edition`s" chief correspondent, Jim Moret, who conducted this fascinating interview. I think all of America is wondering why would any woman take the chance of dating O.J. Simpson in the first place?

MORET: She was not quite 20 years old when she met O.J. Simpson. You`ve seen O.J. Simpson. He`s charming. He`s -- he`s somewhat of a sociopath, but you know, those people who knew him prior to these murders would always want to be around him. He had a magnetic personality. She was young and stupid. I think she would be the first to admit that.

And she got trapped, she said, in this cycle of violence. She was frankly terrified leave. And she told me she didn`t really feel comfortable to break up with O.J. Simpson until he was locked away in prison.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let`s hear from it from her own mouth. Why did Christine wait 13 years before ending it with O.J.? She says she was afraid.


PRODY: I was scared to leave.

MORET: Did you honestly believe that, if you left, he would kill you?

PRODY: Yes, I did. He called and said that he would come there and shoot me and shoot himself.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Jim Moret, what else did she tell you about her relationship with O.J. Simpson? Surprise, surprise, drugs and alcohol involved?

MORET: Yes. No surprise perhaps to most people. But yes, drugs and alcohol were involved. She said she witnessed him using drugs. She used drugs. She`s been through rehab. She tried to break up with him. And as you heard there he tracked hear down, called her and said, "I will shoot you and then kill myself."

I said, "Did you believe him?"

She said, "Yes, I did." And he owned a gun at the time.

She tried -- her phone was monitored. Her bills were monitored. He didn`t like her to have friends. It was a situation of control, not unlike your last segment where you talked about violence against woman.

This woman looked to me, to my producer, to the camera crew, to all of us as a woman who was battered physically, emotionally, mentally. She looked down a great deal. She still seems to be afraid of O.J. Simpson, even though he`s in prison for at least nine years. And I believed her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So just a little bit of time. She`s happy that O.J. is locked up, indeed?

MORET: She is happy. She`s tried to get on with her life. She`s in a new relationship. She has a six-week-old baby girl. She`s moved back to Minnesota. She`s trying to reclaim her life.

She looks much older than her 33 years. And she`s clearly been through a lot, but I think she`s learned a lot, too.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow, fascinating interview. Good, good scoop there, Jim Moret, as always.

Up next superstar Whitney Houston reveals her dark past. Why did she turn to drugs when she reached the pinnacle of her fortune and fame? We`ll tell you next.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Toxic secrets from a legendary singer, Whitney Houston pours out her soul to Oprah Winfrey exposing her hard-core drug addiction and her abusive marriage to Bobby Brown.

Plus has Kanye West hit rock bottom? The hip-hop mega star told Jay Leno he was taking some time off to figure out his life. This, just one day after he was spotted chugging cognac on the Red Carpet and making a fool of himself at the MTV Video Music Awards. So is this guy for real and does time off mean rehab?

Tonight, a rare and gritty look inside celebrity addiction. Pop superstar Whitney Houston, pulling back the curtain on her very stormy marriage to Bobby Brown and their trifecta of abuse: drug abuse, physical abuse and emotional abuse.

Houston admitted to Oprah Winfrey as so many of us suspected. She and Bobby Brown spent a lot of their marriage totally wasted. Houston said her drugs of choice were marijuana laced with rock cocaine. Wow. For Bobby it was alcohol, marijuana and cocaine.

In the midst of all of this addiction things got physical between the couple. Houston recalled the time Bobby Brown slapped her and she retaliated with several blows that drew blood.

We asked for Bobby Brown`s reaction to all this. He didn`t get back to us. Here`s what he told "The Insider" about his marriage, quote, "I don`t think she hurt me or I hurt her. We corrupted each other," end quote. Whatever.

Oprah asked Houston, "What was the worst thing Brown ever did to her?" Listen to this.


WHITNEY HOUSTON, SINGER: So when we got back to the house, (INAUDIBLE) he spit on me. He spit on me. He actually spit on me. And my daughter was coming down the stairs and she saw that. And that was pretty intense.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oprah`s reaction says it all. That was in front of their daughter. Even with the slapping, the spitting and who knows what else, Houston seems in incomplete denial. Listen to another clip from her interview on Oprah.


HOUSTON: Emotionally, he was abusive.


HOUSTON: Physically, no way.

WINFREY: No way?

HOUSTON: Oh, no way. No.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Most of abused women would say the same thing. I dare say. What can we learn from all of this? Why do drug abuse and physical abuse so often go hand in hand?

Straight out to my expert panel: psychologist Michelle Borba; Jim Moret, chief correspondent for "Inside Edition" and psychiatrist and addiction specialist Dr. Reef Karim.

Dr. Reef, even a superstar like Whitney Houston, put up with abuse and humiliation during her drug using that she would never, ever put up with sober. Is there a link?

DR. REEF KARIM, ADDICTION SPECIALIST: Oh, absolutely, Jane. Think about it. When you are drunk or when you are high or when you are under the influence, you`re not driving your own car, you`re somewhere else. The drugs are speaking for you. Somebody else is driving that car. You know?

And you`re going to put up with all sorts of things for a couple of reasons. One, because you`re not strong enough, you`re not of the right mind to actually do something about it; and two, because really your best friend becomes the drugs and especially if you`re in a co-dependent relationship, which seems to be what`s happening here.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely. Whitney Houston`s fame and success quickly outpaced her husband`s in the `90s. She tried to minimize her accomplishments in order to spare his feelings.

Listen to what she told Oprah. This just kills me.


HOUSTON: Something happens to a man when a woman has that much control or that much fame. I had to play down all the time.



I tried to play, "I`m Mrs. Brown, everybody. Don`t call me Ms. Houston. I`m Mrs. Brown."


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh that just makes me so nauseous, so sick to my stomach when even one of the most famous women in the world minimizes herself to assuage male insecurity.

Michelle Borba, you know that we women still have a lot of work as a gender to do.

MICHELLE BORBA, PSYCHOLOGIST: Oh, we sure do and at day one we do. The big thing on this that I think if anybody`s watching and has a daughter, this thing doesn`t start out when you`re 30.

It starts out -- we can already determine little girls who are going to be victims at 3, 4, 5 years of age. The first thing we do wrong is we start rescuing our daughters. We want them to develop a strong voice when they are young.

Number two is you`ve got start developing this kid from the inside out so they finally realize that I deserve better and respect is the bottom line to any relationship.

You`re seeing and you`re hearing her continuing to deny it. The most telling of this is when she says the most disrespectful thing is when he spit in her face. The emotional abuse, the long time, you get to the point of being a victim where you begin to see almost that you feel that you deserve it and you feel like it`s going to change him.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jim Moret, what I thought was the most bizarre is that he apparently was going around spray painting evil eyes on the walls and the carpets so that anywhere she looked these evil eyes would be coming at her and to me that`s almost demonic.

I have to say the first thing I thought of, I`m not comparing them to killers, by any means. But I thought of that Helter Skelter, you know, during the Manson time where they spray painted with blood on the walls.

JIM MORET, CHIEF CORRESPONDENT, "INSIDE EDITION": Right. But look, I don`t think this relationship ever got to that level. I think it was dysfunctional even in her own words.

What really struck me about it and Reef -- Dr. Reef could probably talk about this even better was the fact that even though she admitted to using certain drugs, she said something to me that really struck me. She said, "He, Bobby Brown, was my drug." And she doesn`t really own the fact that she was an abuser of the drugs.

She says, "We did everything together and so I tried to safety relationship by doing everything with him and that included taking drugs." It seems to be a disconnect there between her drug addiction and her relationship. I don`t know, it doesn`t really -- she`s much more candid than she was 2002 with Diane Sawyer but she still doesn`t seem to own that.

KARIM: Yes, Jane if I could say something here.


KARIM: He`s handing by the baton so I`m going to run with it.

When we`re talking about co-dependency we`re talking about somebody who`s with another person and each one of them is only like -- remember that Jerry Maguire quote "You complete me"? This is a pathologic version of that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, absolutely.

KARIM: This is where you are not -- you don`t have your own identity unless that other person is involved. And it`s an unhealthy pathologic relationship where you can`t stand on your own. You don`t have your own independence and so you need that other person to complete you in a bad way.

So what ends up happening is you rely on each other. You get major disagreements, major conflicts, major arguing and it gets really, really bad.


KARIM: The other factor here is something called love addiction. The love addiction is kind of this controversial medical term -- you know, pop culture/medical term -- whereby, you become so obsessed with the concept of another person that not only do you completely lose yourself you do all sorts of things towards that other person, good and bad, that create so much anxiety, so much obsessional qualities within you that very often some people turn to drugs just to self-medicate their anxiety and obsessions.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, Dr. Reef I really feel that Whitney Houston`s drug wasn`t Bobby, it was drugs. Her drug was drugs.

KARIM: Well, they go hand in hand.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Talk about -- yes, crazy love. I think what they are -- in recovery lingo, they call it a lesser companion, somebody who co- signs your bad behavior and they were co-signing each other`s bad behavior for quite a while.

Houston says a critical moment in her recovery is when her mom showed up at her door -- thank you, mom -- with a sheriff and an ultimatum. Listen to this.


HOUSTON: "I`m not losing you to the world. I`m not losing you to Satan." She said I`m not doing this. "I want my daughter back." She says, "I have a court junction here. Either you are doing it my way or we`re just not going to do this at all." And she said, "We`re just going to (INAUDIBLE) on TV and you`re going to retire."


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now Whitney went to rehab, she now says she`s drug- free, but Dr. Reef, she admits to having a drink now and then. That to me as recovering alcoholic with 14 years of sobriety is a huge red flag.

You can`t just take anything mood-altering unless it`s prescribed by a doctor if you`re an addict, certainly not having an alcoholic drink every so often.

KARIM: We all have this pleasure circuit pathway in our brain, this limbic system, which is actually a good thing for all of us. It creates good feelings when we have natural rewards which are like when we are thirsty, we drink. When we`re hungry we eat. To pro-create we have sex. It`s a good thing.

However in an addict it`s like your natural rewards system is hijacked by drugs, by coke, by meth, by heroin, by whatever. And it activates this system and lights it up like the Fourth of July, whereby, it becomes dis- regulated.

So in somebody who has an addiction problem anything that dis- regulates that area of the brain, whether it`s one drink here or a quick you know, toke there or a quick pill here, anything can light up that system and cause you problems down the road. That`s why we always say in the addiction world when you are clean, you`re clean. You stay clean. You don`t take that one drink ten years later because you could fall into the same problems you had earlier.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, Jim Moret, is all this confessional stuff just a tool to promote her comeback album "I Look to You"?

MORET: I`m sorry.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And I look to you for that answer.

MORET: Is all of this confession just to promote her album?


MORET: No. I think -- look, it`s the first album she`s had in seven years. I think it took a long time for her to get to a point where she could see that she has this wonderful gift. She`s able to share this joy with the world. She couldn`t share it with herself for a long time and I think she`s finally escaped this addictive cycle. Whether or not she`s truly clean and sober I hope she is.

I think that she has a lot to offer to the world. I don`t look at this as just a promotional interview. I hope it`s not.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I wish her the very best. She`s an incredible talent, as you pointed out so rightly, Jim. She has amazing charisma.

The irony of it, she seems so strong. And if the woman who appears that strong can succumb to that kind of a toxic relationship, it`s scary for all of us. But she`s cleaning up that mess.

Thank you, outstanding panel.

Coming up, what did cops fine when they turned Phillip Garrido`s house upside down just hours ago?

We`ll tell you and Kanye West on the defensive but do you really think he`s being sincere or is it just a publicity stunt?

I want to hear from you about Kanye and his drinking cognac. 1-877- JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297. Give me a holler.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Should Taylor Swift and the rest of us be offended by Kanye`s rude and possible drunken behavior? Should we accept his apology? We`ll discuss, but first "Top of the Block" tonight.

Groundbreaking developments in the horrific kidnapping and rape case against Phillip Garrido: have investigators linked the convicted sex predator with two other unsolved abductions? These are pictures of cops turning Garrido`s home and yard upside down shot just hours ago.

The simultaneous search warrants were issued in connection with the 1989 disappearance of 13-year-old Ilene Misheloff and the 1988 abduction of 9-year-old Michaela Garecht. Did cops find anything? What does this do to the Garrido`s case? We`re keeping a close eye on this story and we`ll bring you all the latest developments.

And also breaking news today, will the man who allegedly beat his family to death and was indicted on eight counts of murder get the death penalty? The D.A. says Guy Heinze Jr.`s alleged mass killings justice the harsh sentence and frankly I reluctantly agree. It`s not something I take lightly but if this case stacks up in court in terms of the evidence against this guy. If he did it -- if there was ever an argument for the death penalty, the blunt force trauma, slaughter of your entire family is the best argument I`ve heard in a while.

That is tonight`s "Top of the Block."

And an arrogant Kanye West ambushes the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards.


KANYE WEST, SINER: Yo, Taylor, I`m really happy for you. I`m going to let you finish but Beyonce has one of the best videos of all-time.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: So what caused this boorish behavior? Alcohol? He was chug-a-lugging liquor straight from the bottle right on the Red Carpet that night. Both sides are now speaking out.

Taylor Swift relived the moment on, where else, "The View."


TAYLOR SWIFT, SINGER: Wow, I can`t believe I won. This is awesome. Don`t trip and fall. I`m going to get to thank the fans, this is so cool. Oh, Kanye West is here.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: She`s got a great sense of humor doesn`t she? And a strikingly somber Kanye West appeared on "The Jay Leno Show." He spoke about his mother who died suddenly two years ago.


JAY LENO, NBC HOST, "THE JAY LENO SHOW": What do you think she would have said about in?

WEST: Um -- obviously, you know, I deal with hurt and you know so many -- you know, celebrities they never take the time off.

I have never taken time of to really -- you know, I just -- music after music and tour after tour after tour and I`m just ashamed that my hurt caused someone else`s hurt.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Could the pain of losing his mom have led to this cry for help behavior? We`re talking about it tonight with my fabulous panel.

Back with me Dr. Reef Karim, addiction specialist. Does this guy have a problem? We saw him carrying a bottle of cognac on the Red Carpet and swilling it. He`s exhibited this kind of behavior before. Do you think he`s an alcoholic?

KARIM: You know he really appears to be, based on the fact that he was drinking as much as he did. He had an acute stressor. A majorly acute stressor which is his mom passing.

I don`t know him. I don`t know what his drinking habits are like but if he really is drinking cognac in that bottle and he`s swigging that much of it and then has that kind of behavior I mean to me this is just a straight-up sign of, hey, look you need on get some help. You need to talk to somebody about this. You need to see if this is really a problem your life.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely. And when I saw him on "Jay Leno" I saw what I recognized as the incomprehensible demoralization of the addict. I`ve experienced it myself. You wake up the next day and you say, "Who was that person who did that horrible, crazy thing?" And then you realize, "Oh my gosh, that person is me. I don`t recognize myself."

And that is really what they call the incomprehensible demoralization and humiliation of alcoholism and that`s usually what happens right before you hit bottom.

Donna in Virginia, I hear you`re a recovering -- a sober person, put it that way. I will let you are explain yourself. What is your question or thought, ma`am?

DONNA, VIRGINIA (via telephone): Yes, I am a recovering alcoholic. Thank the Lord I`m not active today. This man -- have brought back so many memories. I have woke up many mornings and been ashamed and scared and not remembering what I was doing. It`s a very sad thing. Thank you.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It really is. And thank you for sort of validating what I said is that this is -- it`s happening on a world stage but it`s very classic, garden variety behavior for an alcoholic.

Now on "The View" Swift said Kanye did not reach out to her, so Whoopi Goldberg gave the rapper this shout-out.


WHOOPI GOLDBERG, HOST, "THE VIEW": Well, hopefully, if Kanye`s watching he`ll know what to do.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jim Moret, you can always count on Whoopi to tell it like it is and say, "Hey, here`s what you have to do." And apparently "The View" says Kanye actually called Taylor right after her appearance on "The View" and apologized to her in person.

MORET: When Whoopi talks, people listen and that`s as it should be.

He did call and apologize. And look I don`t know if he has an alcohol problem. He has exhibited this kind of stupid behavior in the past where it`s all about him. And that`s really what it was that night. It was him saying, "I think Beyonce should have won."

I think that Beyonce did a very classy thing bringing Taylor Swift back up on stage.


MORET: She`s only 19 years old. She handled herself very well but he`s done this kind of thing before. And that`s what`s interesting.

I don`t know if the alcohol made him do it. I think that`s a cop-out to say it`s all the alcohol.


MORET: He may have other problems but I`m glad he, at least, apologized.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And also, alcoholics do have other problems; Kanye West turning to alcohol to deal with tragedy.

You know, it seems like every night -- in fact every night -- we`re covering an alcohol or drug-related story, embarrassment, scandal. It is national recovery month. Guess what? Perfect time to get sober, Kanye.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`re sober. We`re sober. I`m sober...

CROWD: You`re sober. We`re sober. I`m sober.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. There I am with 10,000 other sober people and, yes, I made up that chant at A&E`s recovery rally this weekend. It was a blast, we marched across the Brooklyn Bridge; proof you can have more fun sober than wasted.

In my new autobiography "I Want" I describe how I hit bottom and experienced a profound shift 14 years ago. To order my book, go to and look for the order section.

If you`re battle loser drug, believe me, this book can help you.



BEYONCE, SINGER: This is amazing. I remember being 17 years old, up for my first MTV Award with Destiny`s Child and it was one of the most exciting moments in my life. So I`d like for Taylor to come out and have her moment.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: That was the incredibly gracious Beyonce at the MTV Music Video Awards (SIC) cleaning up after Kanye`s mess. Celebs lashing out in defense of Swift, even the President called Kanye a jackass in an off-the-record comment to ABC and guess what, TMZ got their hands on it.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The young lady seems like a perfectly a nice person. She`s getting her award. What`s he even doing up there?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why did he do that?

OBAMA: He`s a jackass.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I think we mostly agree with him, right? Singer Pink is definitely on the record.


PINK, SINGER: I just think he`s an idiot. He`s just a waste. He`s just a toolbox.

MATT LAUER, NBC HOST, "TODAY SHOW": Now, don`t hold back.

PINK: And he`s getting exactly what he wants right now. People are talking about him. So...

LAUER: Let`s stop. Let`s stop, ok?


VELEZ: Wow. You know, this is the best thing that ever happened to Taylor Swift. I could tell you I`m a little out of it. I did not know Taylor Swift existed until this. Now I`m very eager to download her music and hear her music. Jim Moret?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s great for her, this is making her a superstar.

MORET: Of course it is. She was on "The View" today. She got two songs and she`s charming. She`s an adorable 19-year-old girl. She`s got a lot of talent.

She`s showed a lot of dignity, a lot of class. And people who listen to her music, she`s got a lot of fans and I think justifiably so. She`s a good singer and good songwriter.

But now you know her and you like her and like you say, a lot of people feel the same way and they`re going to support her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Kanye has a history of erratic behavior. He was arrested in 2008 after attacking a paparazzi and smashing the camera to the ground. You`ve got to see this.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I took it. I took it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Help me. Help me.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Any police, man?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Michelle, that`s violent behavior. That`s another factor we`ve got to put in this equation.

BORBA: Well, bottom line, you certainly do. And I`m sitting here looking at this clip, Jane and the most important thing I want to point out is I wish every parent could sit down and re-watch that clip, the last one of seeing two extreme behavior patterns.

What do you remember most, the civility and dignity of the gorgeous girl who blossomed (ph) at that point or the absolute obnoxious behavior of the other one on the right? Use it as a teachable moment.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Absolutely. And as much as I just condemn him for everything, we also have to have some compassion for him Dr. Reef Karim...


VELEZ-MITCHELL: ...if he`s suffering from alcoholism.

You know, I`m a recovering alcoholic. I did embarrassing and stupid things while drunk and we have to have compassion for somebody. It`s a disease. It`s not a character defect.

KARIM: Right. And, Jane, hopefully this is a reality check for him either way. If he`s an alcoholic, hopefully it`s the bottom, as you said and he`ll actually get some help. If he`s not an alcoholic and this is about his lifestyle, because hey, look he`s a performer, he`s a rap artist and he`s a rap star, lifestyle problems are part of this.

However, I think he`s really taking it to an extreme and either way I think he needs a reality check and to kind of get his narcissism back into play.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, we have to stop rewarding him for his bad behavior.

KARIM: Exactly.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And he was on "Jay Leno" last night.

Thank you, fabulous panel for joining me.

Remember click on and pre-order your copy of my new book "I Want."

You are watching ISSUES on HLN.