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Search Intensifies for Missing Tucson 6-Year-Old
Aired April 25, 2012 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: Breaking news tonight, live, Tucson. A parent`s worst nightmare, Mom and Dad tuck their 6-year-old girl into bed, settle into bed themselves. Next morning, Daddy checks on Isabel 8:00 AM, she`s gone.
The family out of the home while 6-year-old Isabel`s room and the rest of the home searched by K9s, including a cadaver dog. Cops execute a third warrant at the home, and then take the search to a landfill. Neighbors report family dogs bark at strangers, but did they bark that night?
Bombshell tonight. In the last hours, cops remove fabric and pillows from a red hatchback parked in the driveway, as crime scene tape goes back up at the missing girl`s home. And tonight, we learn Isabel usually sleeps with her two older brothers, but not the night she disappears. Why?
And tonight, the FBI sends a shrink into the home, now empty, to analyze it. And as cops question overnight work crews around the Celis home, we narrow down the timeline, placing 6-year-old Isabel at her brother`s Little League game the night before she goes missing. As we go to air, hundreds of hours of surveillance video being combed by cops. Tonight, where is Isabel? We investigate the clues left behind.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Six-year-old Isabel Mercedes Celis.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Vanished from her bedroom in the middle of the night.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Gone, missing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where is she?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Last seen in this home by her parents.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have been interviewed extensively.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A behavioral analysis unit.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: FBI-trained dogs.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Searched for clues.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A methodical search.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In the house, the neighborhood and a nearby landfill.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Close to the child`s home is this surveillance camera.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police are now scouring hours.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of footage.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For any sign of Isabel Celis.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They`re going to do another search of the house.
GRACE: Crime scene tape back up around the home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re not ruling anybody out at this point.
GRACE: This home seems to be fortified.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The family had two dogs.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: And tonight, after days of questions, the family speaks.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BECKY CELIS, ISABEL`S MOTHER: Hi. We just wanted to let you guys know, we have tremendous gratitude toward Detective Sabori (ph) and his elite team. Our community and the Little League community and the TMC (ph) family crew and the millions of people around the world will continue to pray and volunteer their time and effort (INAUDIBLE) in finding Isa.
We do not want you to focus -- or we don`t want the focus to be taken off Isabel by us speaking in front of the cameras or by the media. We are here today to plea for the safe return of our baby girl, Isabel.
SERGIO CELIS, ISABEL`S FATHER: We are cooperating to the fullest extent with the investigation. We are increasing the reward. Just please, please, to the person or persons who have Isabel, tell us your demands. Tell us what you want. We will do anything for her.
We are looking -- we`re looking for you, Isa. We love you and we miss you so much! And we will never give up! We will never give up looking for you!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Good evening. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us. Bombshell tonight. A parent`s worst nightmare. Mom and Dad tuck their 6-year-old girl, Isabel, into bed, settle into bed themselves. Next morning, Daddy checks on her 8:00 AM, Isabel gone.
In the last hours, cops remove fabric and pillows from a red hatchback parked at the family home, as crime scene tape goes back up yet again at the missing girl`s home.
We are live and taking your calls. A lot of new evidence, a lot of new clues we`ve uncovered overnight. We learned, for one thing, Mom left that morning around 7:30 AM-ish. We learned she did not check Isabel`s room before she left. That was a big question.
We narrowed down the timeline, learning that Isabel was spotted Friday evening at a late Little League game. So therefore, it`s not a question of who else saw Isabel on Friday or was she at school. We know she was alive and well Friday night, bolstering the family`s story.
We are taking your calls. Out to Paul Birmingham, news director KNST, joining me there in Tucson. Paul, what do you know?
PAUL BIRMINGHAM, KNST (via telephone): Well, these new developments very interesting, to say the least. At least two technicians -- these appear to be crime scene technicians -- removing these items from a red hatchback that is parked on the driveway of the Celises` home.
Now, this car, we are told by Tucson police, does not drive. It`s not drivable. It`s not operational. Unclear exactly when it was used last. We`re seeing fabric removed. We`re also seeing what appear to be pillows removed by these individuals, who, again, appear to be evidence technicians.
Again, another ominous sign, this crime scene tape going up around the Celises` home. It had been removed for some time. It is back up.
Also, a warrant which had been issued has been refreshed. Those are police`s words. Essentially, what that means is that allowed the FBI`s behavioral analysis unit to go in and get a firsthand look at the crime scene so that they could bring their specialized skills and training to bear on that crime scene and see exactly what the perpetrator or what the family may have seen at that time.
GRACE: So long story short, the crime scene tape is back up around the home. Jean Casarez, legal correspondent, "In Session," that could mean a number of things. As I reiterated last night, Jean Casarez -- not only a correspondent but also a lawyer, as well. Jean, a search warrant does not mean you`ve got a revolving door like Wal-Mart, 24/7, you can just walk in whenever you feel like it.
Cops went back to get a warrant. They brought in a shrink, an FBI behavioral analyst. Why? Don`t know. But that is not an ominous sign pointing to the family, as many people think it is, that they got another search warrant. You can`t just walk in and out the front door whenever you feel like it because you had a search warrant a week ago. It doesn`t work that way, Jean.
JEAN CASAREZ, "IN SESSION": No, it doesn`t. And if this case gets to trial, they`ve got to mind their Ps and Qs. They have to procedurally do it correctly, so any evidence they collect can be presented for a jury.
But the searching of the home has gone to this car, Nancy, that`s on the property. It`s a red hatchback car. What I find interesting is, yes, they took carpeting, they took pillows. It doesn`t sound like they took all the carpeting, though, Nancy.
They took some of the carpeting. So what did that carpeting show? What did a presumptive test show of that carpeting? And more importantly, the car doesn`t drive.
GRACE: So that car was parked there regardless of whatever time an intruder may or may not have entered the home. Now, that takes some chutzpah to walk up to a house where you see a car parked in the driveway and go in and nab somebody. But it has been done before on many occasions.
We also learned -- out to you, Natisha Lance, standing by at the Celis family home in Tucson -- we learn Mommy did not check on Isabel before she went to work. Now, here`s the kicker. A lot of people are screaming, Oh, why didn`t she check on her child?
I got to say, when I get home from work at night, if the twins have just gone to sleep, I don`t open the door and look at them because it`s going to wake them up. However, if they`ve been asleep for an hour, I will absolutely go and check on them. I just want to see them. I want to make sure they`re breathing, that they`re OK.
The fact that she thought her husband was going to be up in 30 minutes could explain why she didn`t do it. But it does affect the timeline, Natisha. What do we know?
NATISHA LANCE, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: That`s right, Nancy. And that was a big question, whether or not the mother of Isabel had checked on her prior to going to work. And we learned today that she did not do that.
Now, they did have a late night. As you mentioned earlier, they were at the baseball park. Isabel`s brother was playing baseball. She was in the bleachers, according to folks that I spoke to last night there, and she was playing. Everything seemed to be normal. And they did get home late because Isabel`s father was taking in the bases and putting them away for storage.
Now, when they did return home, perhaps she wanted to let her sleep because she knew that they had a late night, and so maybe that`s why she didn`t check on them. But again, 8:00 o`clock is that timeline, when the father went into the room to check on her, to wake her up, and by 8:14 is when he called police.
GRACE: OK. Did he call the mom at work? Because she was either on time or early to work as a pediatric nurse that following morning. That would have been a Saturday morning. Did he call her before he calls the cops? Do we know? Has the 911 call been released?
LANCE: Police are not releasing the 911 call at this point, but reports have said that he did reach out to the mother prior to calling police. And they did also check the home.
We also have reports that the siblings of Isabel were walking around the neighborhood, even one of her siblings collapsing and going into a neighboring store of the neighborhood here and telling the worker there, We were asleep. We didn`t hear anything. But Isabel is gone.
So those are the facts that we are working with at this point. But again, the mother did not see Isabel before she went to work.
GRACE: OK. For some reason, I`m in the position of defending the family, defending the mother and the father tonight. And I don`t mind that because the reality is -- and the family has got to get used to it. It may be a shock. It may be hurtful, but that is where the investigation starts, with Mommy and Daddy and the brothers, although fratricide or killing a sibling is extremely rare. That`s not what happened here, I can guarantee you.
The family has got to accept they are where the investigation starts. It starts in that home. So they are going to be raked over the coals. They`re going to be subjected to a lot of questioning, a lot of speculation. That is the reality of this sort of an investigation.
We`re learning a lot. We`re learning a lot about the father, that he was an active member at the Little League, very involved with his family, very close to his family, as is the mother. They were all at the game the night before, watching the brother play, the father collecting the base plates, working at the field. The family got home late Friday night.
What this puts in my mind, Natisha Lance, is all the people at a Little League game, and what better place for a perv to be as at a kids` Little League game. What about it, Natisha?
LANCE: That`s a good point, Nancy. It doesn`t appear as if anybody saw anything that was suspicious at that game on Friday evening. This community that was there at the baseball park -- they`re very close-knit. They are like a family.
A lot of them were shedding tears last night as they were speaking out for this Celis family. And one of the things that they said was, you know, this shouldn`t happen to any family, but especially this family because this family has been so good to this community.
GRACE: On the other hand, if it is a random intruder, how would they know which room is hers? How would they know how to get in? You`re telling me the window is six feet off the ground. This investigation can go in many directions.
And to you, Paul Birmingham, KNST. What can you tell me about surveillance?
BIRMINGHAM: There is a surveillance camera nearby, on one of the buildings that is a business. There`s also a home nearby, about 75 yards away, that has a camera pointed directly at the house in question. Officers are going to be poring over the surveillance video, looking for any possible vehicles that might have been seen coming or going. And hopefully, they`ll be able to come up with some sort of evidence out of that.
But at this point, police are not saying exactly what they`re looking for on those videos, but they are hopeful that there would be something that they could use to try and bring Isabel home.
GRACE: Unleash the lawyers. Latonia Hines, prosecutor, Anne Bremner, defense attorney, high-profile lawyer out of Seattle, Mickey Sherman, defense attorney and author of "How Can You Defend Those People?" joining me out of Connecticut tonight.
First of all, to you, Latonia. Crime scene tape back up around the home. To me, irrelevant. If they want to go back in the home for any reason, they should go back and refresh or get a new warrant. They can`t just walk in. That doesn`t mean anything nefarious or ominous about the family, does it, Latonia?
LATONIA HINES, PROSECUTOR: No, it doesn`t. You`re absolutely correct, Nancy. I mean, this is where the police believe the scene of the crime occurred, and so it makes sense for them to be going back there. And you`ve got to use the search warrant so that if you do find any information or evidence...
HINES: ... you`re able to legally use it at trial. So I don`t think it`s...
GRACE: Mickey Sherman, why a shrink? Why is a shrink walking around the inside of the home, an FBI analyst?
MICKEY SHERMAN, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: This is 2012. It`s the "CSI" world, as we see on TV every night. There`s new forms of identification, new forms of investigation, and they`re staying up to date. It`s admirable.
GRACE: Anne Bremner, I don`t think there was ever a murder case that I tried where I did not, with a warrant, if necessary, go back to the scene and just walk around it so I could jive (ph) it with the facts that I know, or determine the facts were inconsistent.
ANNE BREMNER, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Absolutely. And you go back, Nancy, again and again and again. That`s what a good prosecutor does, and that`s what you did as a great prosecutor.
GRACE: I`m going to go straight to your calls in just one moment. But first, Ellie, we are hearing that police are now searching for Isabel in washes and drainage areas.
ELLIE JOSTAD, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: Right, Nancy. They are actually using dogs in some of those searches. They are expanding beyond that immediate neighborhood to see if they can find any clues, anything in areas where, you know, water runs through the neighborhood, drainage areas.
GRACE: OK, explain that to me, Paul Birmingham. Where exactly are they looking in drainage areas?
BIRMINGHAM: The way that Tucson is situated, there are a number of dips in roadways, washes that come down from the hills that surround the community, where when it rains, these become essentially rivers. And these are areas where kids sometimes will wander off. They`ll play in those, even though it`s very dangerous.
So it`s not uncommon, even in what appears to be an urban area, to have these areas that are overgrown with brush and trees and that sort of thing, and they become very active during the storm season. But for the most of the time, it`s a place where kids would go and possibly hide or somebody could potentially hide a body.
GRACE: Also, we`re hearing from Villasenor that he, speaking on behalf of police, does not believe Isabel walked away from her home. And they don`t believe she has been taken out of the state.
Jean Casarez, where are they -- how are they making that leap of logic?
CASAREZ: They have to know more than we know. And we also know they are scaling back the physical search. They had 250 officers physically searching for her, scaled back to 30, 20, and 30 are now doing tip leads.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Friends of the Celis family say that Isabel was here, watching her brother`s baseball game, the night before she went missing. While police have scaled back the investigation, and they still have a number of questions, they are making this a top priority. And the question still remains, what happened to the 6-year-old little girl?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Six years old and abducted.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything goes through your mind.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The desperate search to find missing Isabel Celis before it`s too late.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Find Isabel and bring her home safely.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The precious 1st grader last seen in her very own bedroom.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do these children just disappear without anyone inside noticing?
SHARON ROCHA, LACI PETERSON`S MOTHER: Someone has taken all of this away from me and everyone else who loves her. There are no words that can possibly describe the ache in my heart or the emptiness in my life. I know that someone knows where Laci is, and I`m pleading with you, please, please let her come home to us.
DIENA THOMPSON, SOMER THOMPSON`S MOTHER: I want you to know that I will not sleep until this person is found. I hope they get you, and I hope they make you pay for a long, long time!
ERIN RUNNION, SAMANTHA RUNNION`S MOTHER: And in honor of Samantha and in honor of Jessica and Molly Fish (ph) and Polly Klaas and Adam Walsh -- how many children do we have to take away before we as Americans get organized? We outnumber you so many times over! There is no excuse, and we`re not going to let you get away with this anymore!
MARK LUNSFORD, JESSICA LUNSFORD`S FATHER: All the parents out there, I know everybody does, but do it more often, make sure you get that hug and kiss every day before you leave that house. I did. I got mine. You just make sure you get yours.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: You were earlier seeing video from ABC`s "Good Morning America," and the last voice you heard is that of Mark Lunsford. I recall distinctly when his 9-year-old little girl, Jessica, went missing.
And with me right now is Mark Lunsford. Mark, thank you for being with us. Long time no see, friend. And a lot of people are calling for the parents in this case to speak out, to make a public plea. What is the benefit of making that public plea for the return of your daughter, the return of your child?
LUNSFORD: Well, it`s coming from the parent. And I mean, I think it`s important that parents do get involved, and with limitations, by talking to the media, pleaing to your communities and surroundings for your daughter. I mean, it does help and it will help, but they need to hear it from you.
GRACE: Mark, what do you think the hold-up is? In fact, there are reports right now that the parents are actually in hiding, that it has been days and no word from the parents anywhere.
LUNSFORD: Well, you know, Nancy, it can be really overwhelming, the mass media outlets that get together at your home. So you know, that`s probably got a lot to do with it. But there`s people that can help them to talk to the media.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Six-year-old girl, little Isabel, where is she?
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Isabel was last seen in this home by her parents.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The screen was removed and the window was open.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Isabel was gone.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Isabel often spent the night sharing a bed with siblings, but on the night in question, she was alone in her room.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If, you know, she were to have walked away, which I highly doubt.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: The FBI is stepping up its involvement.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: A behavioral analysis unit is now working with lead investigators.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re still saying suspicious disappearance, possible abduction.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NANCY GRACE, HLN HOST: Where is 6-year-old Isabel? There are reports circulating now that police believe she could actually be caught on store surveillance camera? Also reports that her family is in hiding?
I find both of those very difficult to believe, Paul Birmingham.
PAUL BIRMINGHAM, NEWS DIRECTOR, KNST, 790AM/97.1 FM (via phone): Well, that is the question, without having talked to the parents, people are left to wonder, where are they? We`re not seeing them at any of these vigils. In fact last night many people went to that vigil thinking that we might see the parents come out and make some public statement. That did not happen.
The surveillance cameras also very interesting. Just because of the proximity, the fact that the Celis home -- house is at the end of the street, right across the wall from a large commercial building with a surveillance camera right there. Now did it have the ability to capture that home? Only the police know that right now, and that`s a fact that they`re not telling us.
GRACE: OK. What about it? What can you tell me?
Natisha Lance, you`re on the scene. What`s this business about the parents being in hiding and about the possibility she`s caught on surveillance video at a store?
NATISHA LANCE, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: OK, well, the first thing about the parents. We don`t know what their location is. I can tell you, though, that we did see Isabel`s older brother, her 10-year-old brother, Julian, right before we went to air today. He was with some relatives. It appeared to possibly be an aunt and his grandfather, but I don`t know if the parents are staying with him as well.
That would be at the grandparents` house which is right down the street, right directly from where I`m standing -- in front of where I`m standing right now.
Now as far as the surveillance video, this would be from an OfficeMax which is across the parking lot from where the Celis family lives. There is a wall that borders the parking lot but there are surveillance cameras that are at the top of that building which is on the side of the OfficeMax, and those cameras do point in that direction.
I did ask police today if those cameras would capture anything that would be happening at the home. They said they don`t know at this point but they are going over all of the surveillance video from not only that business but all of the businesses in the area.
GRACE: Back to Mark Lunsford whose daughter Jessica was abducted from her home back in 2005.
Mark, back to the parents, reportedly in hiding. I don`t -- think I would take that with a box of salt. How overwhelming is this to a parent because I recall, as a crime victim, when my fiance was murdered, I couldn`t put two sentences together. I think I would try to do better if my child was missing, god forbid, to try to help find the child. But their state of mind must be so devastated, Mark Lunsford.
MARK LUNSFORD, 9-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER JESSICA LUNSFORD WAS ABDUCTED AND MURDERED: I`m sure they are devastated and I`m sure that having all those media outlets come at you all at once is very overwhelming. I spent most of my days and nights doing interviews, all day, all night.
GRACE: I remember.
LUNSFORD: Every 15 minutes. You know, get involved. I`ll tell you what John Walsh and Marc Klaas told me, get involved. Talk to the media. Ask people to help. You don`t have to answer a bunch of questions. Just ask them for their help.
GRACE: Everyone, we are taking your calls, but I quickly want to go back out to the reporters to address some breaking news that we are learning. We have that fliers are being plastered everywhere in the search for her even as cops are scaling back the manhunt, the actual physical search for her. At this time a behavioral analyst has just gone through the home.
To Brian Russell, forensic psychologist, what does a behaviorist hope to learn by going through a crime scene?
BRIAN RUSSELL, FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST: Nancy, great question. First thing they want to do is just get a general sense of what life in this house was like. Then they want to compare the parents` account of what life was like.
GRACE: What do you mean by that? What do you mean, life in the house was like? You mean, is it a pigsty? Is it neat? Is it orderly?
I mean, for me, that fluctuates with the day and what the twins and what I`m doing, whether everything is a wreck or whether it`s quasi orderly. So what -- what are you going to gain by looking at an empty cereal bowl? Help me out.
RUSSELL: Well, what you`re trying to get, Nancy, is some context for what the parents have said. So, for example, if the parents have said that it is plausible that someone entered that house, a stranger, found the child in her room and left the house with the child, you want to get a sense of what does this environment really look like. Like you said you did when you prosecuted murder cases. You wanted to go to the scene and get a sense of, can I see this happening the way that someone said it did.
If so, then that`s helpful because that supports the parents` story. If not, then you have new questions to go back and address to the parent.
GRACE: And I will give you a perfect example.
Out to you, Latonia, Ann and Mickey. To you, Anne Bremner. I recall a homicide, a murder I prosecuted. It was a dope case, a murder over drugs, and I had been to the scene. And when the defense witness stood up and said what they saw, I knew it was impossible because of a very high, thick hedge of bushes.
They would absolutely have precluded that witness, where he was, seeing what he said he saw. And it torpedoed their case. So to prosecute or to talk about a case you haven`t been to the scene is a waste of everybody`s time. What about it, Ann?
ANNE BREMNER, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, absolutely. We used to have a signup sheet when I was D.A. and I would sign out to the crime scene. I was constantly out there and I think it`s so important because you need to go to every single aspect, see what you can see, what they could have seen, how could it happen. I had a case where the windows were broken from the inside-out when the person said an intruder came in, broke in the windows and killed someone. Impossible.
GRACE: Mickey Sherman, all this business about the parents not speaking out, word has gotten back to us that the cops told them not to speak out. But as a matter of fact, the cops did not tell them not to speak out. They don`t have to answer questions to make a public plea, do they, Mickey?
MICKEY SHERMAN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY, AUTHOR OF "HOW CAN YOU DEFEND THOSE PEOPLE?": No. And of course the person who really laid it out perfectly is Mr. Lunsford there in -- on the show. Can you imagine the bevy of reporters when you are not just the victim but your child is missing, and suddenly you`re in front of a TV camera entertaining somebody.
These people are absolutely besieged by a team of aggressive reporters, and I`m not talking about the HLN people, but from all over the world people come and converge on these scenes. And they`ve got a battery of satellite trucks out there. Aggressive bookers, commentators, whatever. And I can just totally understand how these people just kind of withdraw into their shell.
GRACE: To you, Latonia Hines, prosecutor, joining us out of the Atlanta jurisdiction. Neighbors received a questionnaire.
Let`s pull up the questions on that questionnaire, Dana, very quickly.
And I`ve got the questionnaire right here from police. Does your home have exterior surveillance? Are you aware of neighbor`s house surveillance? Do you have a dog? Did it bark? Who is the missing child usually with? What was the child usually doing when you saw the child? What are they trying to get at, Latonia?
LATONIA HINES, PROSECUTOR: They`re trying to find out what could have possibly occurred on that night. They`re trying to see, wait a minute, you have dogs out there. Were they barking at that time? Do the dogs usually bark if there`s some stranger in the neighborhood?
I mean they`re trying to find out the conditions because the neighbors are going to know the most about that neighborhood, what`s going on there, and see if they could have possibly spotted anything, anything out of the ordinary.
GRACE: To Steve Moore, former fed with the FBI, also worked in Tucson.
Steve, what do you know about this area and, number two, we always make fun of the nosy neighbor, Gladys Kravitz, but the reality is a nosy neighbor can give very important information.
STEVE MOORE, FORMER FBI AGENT AND VIOLENT CRIME INVESTIGATOR: Yes, the nosy neighbor is very valuable. I did do some work while I was stationed in L.A. in Tucson. I know the area fairly well. The police right now are throwing out a very wide net. I don`t think they have any kind of idea who it is. What concerns me is that rather than asking for consent to search the house, they`re getting a warrant.
GRACE: Yes, I noticed that, too, Steve Moore. And what can you tell me about this particular area and the circumference of the area? Is it residential? Commercial? What?
MOORE: Right along Craycroft, there is an entire area where there are -- there are drug -- there are drug deals going on. There are large drug shipments. Most of my surveillance in that area was done on drug cases.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don`t know what these leads are going to provide us and where we`re going to go.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: A desperate certificate to find missing Isabel Celis before it`s too late.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: They said that there was nothing specific that led them to do this search at the landfill.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re still saying suspicious disappearance, a possible abduction.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Mothers, friends and co-workers touched by Isabel`s disappearance are doing what they can do to help.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: The precious first grader last seen in her very own bedroom Friday night.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Obviously I`m disappointed that we haven`t found her at this point.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: So you hear the police there say they are disappointed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re not ruling anybody out at this point.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There`s just no possible way --
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: And they`re moving from the search phase to the investigation phase --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That the family would have anything to do with it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: We are taking your calls. A lot of major developments overnight in the search for 6-year-old Isabel Celis.
Back to Mark Lunsford and Steve Moore.
Steve Moore, you were in the area of Tucson.
Let me say that map again, very quickly, Dana.
Right there at Craycroft, you said you observed drug deals going on, but Cray Croft is a long road. Where was -- where were the drug deals in relation to East Broadway Boulevard?
MOORE: On the extended center line of Craycroft from Broadway as you`re looking at the map it would -- be go out different directions as you`re looking at it to the left and to the right. There are various areas in that entire Craycroft Road area where you`re going to find pockets of this. It`s endemic in the -- some of the lower income areas in that area.
GRACE: Well, their home doesn`t look lower income to me.
MOORE: No, but it`s not a situation where you can`t have upper class homes, upper middle class homes within a mile or so of some of the lower class -- lower class homes, or lower middle class homes. There`s nothing really in the zoning to keep that from happening in that area. A lot is being fixed and renovated but there are still some dangerous areas in that -- in that Craycroft Road corridor.
GRACE: To Dr. Gwenn O`Keefe, physician and founder of pediatricsnow.com. Dr. O`Keefe joining us out of Boston.
Dr. O`Keefe, what clues do you think that they`re looking for in the home? They keep going back. And we`ve seen CSI leaving the home. We`ve also seen, take a look at this, pillows and some sort of fabric, be it carpet or some other fabric, being taken out of this red hatch back parked there in the family driveway.
DR. GWENN O`KEEFE, M.D., PEDIATRICIAN, FOUNDER & CEO, PEDIATRICSNOW.COM: Well, Nancy, typical forensic evidence would be things like hair, body fluids, you know, from both the girl as well as the potential -- the person of interest, but they`ll also be looking, you know, for just other evidence such as, you know, footprints or evidence of a glove traces, anything that could link somebody to the scene, is what they look for, things that shouldn`t be there.
GRACE: Out to the lines. Pamela, Ohio. Hi, Pamela. What`s your question?
PAMELA, CALLER FROM OHIO: Hi, Nancy. It`s great to talk to you.
PAMELA: One thing that I found very unusual about this case was on Saturday morning there is no school, I let my kids sleep as late as they want and I found it strange that they would go in and wake her up at 8:00 in the morning instead of letting her sleep as late as she wanted.
GRACE: Interesting. You know, Pamela, really, they can`t win for losing because a lot of people claimed, why didn`t you check on the child before you went to work at 7:30 or before, and then your point, which is a very valid point, why would you wake them up on a Saturday morning at 8:00? For all I know, they had Little League. I don`t know why he went in there and the father checked on her at 8:00.
What about it? What do you know, Jean Casarez?
JEAN CASAREZ, LEGAL CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION": Nancy, we don`t know. It could be that every Saturday morning they have breakfast together, and so her daddy was waking her up or they watch cartoons together. It could be a multitude of reasons.
GRACE: You`re right. You`re absolutely right. I know that according to this sighting, Natisha Lance, she was at the Little League game as late as 11:00. Is that correct?
LANCE: Right. Well, we know, Nancy, that she was put to bed at 11:00 but the Little League park is just about five minutes up the road, so they could have come home about 10:30.
GRACE: Got you. That`s pretty late.
Back out to the lines. Tina, Florida. Hi, Tina, what`s your question?
TINA, CALLER FROM FLORIDA: Hi, Nancy. How are you today?
GRACE: I`m good, dear.
TINA: Do they have any prior DCF accounts, police records of abuse? Is there any type of negative action going on in that house other than this? Because, I`m with you, I don`t believe that the parents have a whole lot to do with this.
GRACE: Well, I`ve got to tell you something, Tina, I mean, when I look at these cases -- Mark Lunsford, let me get you to weigh in on this, too. You always look first to the parents because statistically it`s somebody in the home. There`s something about it even though a lot of people are arguing, and I hear it. I hear what they`re saying. That the screen from the window looked staged, that it was removed from the window, that who could get in that window six feet off the ground.
I`m hearing it all. I`m hearing it. I`m hearing it up here. But that`s a very, very powerful accusation to make against a family this early in the game, Mark Lunsford.
LUNSFORD: Yes, it is. I mean, you know, law enforcement, they have to use just about any tactic they can to get you to tell the truth, even if it means lying to you, to get you to tell the truth. I mean, they told me that they found my daughter`s blood on my father`s clothing, which wasn`t true, but it`s a tactic -- anything that they can do to get someone to give them some kind of truth as to what happened to these children.
GRACE: I`m hearing also that my suspicion is correct, she did have a game -- is that right, Clark?
CLARK GOLDBAND, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER, COVERING STORY: Yes.
GRACE: She did have a Little League game that morning, so that`s possibly an answer to Tina`s question why she was woken up, and, also, regarding their records, the dad had a couple of things, possession of drug paraphernalia back in the early `90s. For all I know that was a marijuana roach, it could be anything.
He had a couple of things that were dismissed. And the rest were -- an animal without a license. A dog at-large, things of that ilk. The mom looks pretty clean herself.
So I`m not -- I don`t know anything, Paul Birmingham, KNST, about any DFACS into the home, you know, child safety. I haven`t heard anything about that.
BIRMINGHAM: No, we`ve not heard anything of the sort. Though you do have to consider that in most instances if there is a Child Protective Service case, if there is something that`s ongoing, that information is going to be sealed and that`s not going to be immediately accessible as will the search warrants.
We`ve been told by Tucson Police last night that the search warrant returns are going to be sealed in this case for the foreseeable future. We were hoping to get in there this week and see exactly what cops were looking for. That`s not going to be the case now. But CPS could conduct an investigation That`s not been revealed at this point, though.
GRACE: Brad Dennis, K9 handler, director of Search Operations for KlaasKids Foundation. What do the -- what was the role of the various dogs that have been brought into the home?
BRAD DENNIS, K9 HANDLER, DIRECTOR OF SEARCH OPERATIONS, KLAASKIDS FOUNDATION: They brought in -- my understanding is they brought in two different types. They brought in a scent discriminating trailing dog to see if they could pick up direction of travel, maybe leading the way from the window, but it appears that they also brought in a cadaver dog into the house. Obviously one of those dogs gave a trained indication inside the house.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: In the case of the 6-year-old girl who disappeared seemingly without a trace.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We love Isabel and we`ll never give up finding her.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Police tell us the trash in Isabel`s neighborhood was picked up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The location of the trash that --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: And to you, Ellie Jostad -- no, let me throw this to Natisha there on the scene, Elle. I understand the family is allowed back in the home. But they`re not coming back. The dad`s only gone back to get his wallet and his toothbrush?
LANCE: That`s right. They did go back yesterday evening for -- to get those particular items. But they are not allowed in quite yet today. The police do expect to release the scene at some point later on tonight but as of yet, not.
GRACE: OK, and back to you, Ellie, it`s my understanding that the family has stated that -- or their spokespeople, which is a vast difference from the family saying it themselves, that they were told not to speak at all, but the cops are saying no.
ELLIE JOSTAD, NANCY GRACE CHIEF EDITORIAL PRODUCER: Well, right, Nancy. And it`s not really clear what the discrepancy is here. We were told by a friend of the family that the FBI had requested they not do any interviews with the media. However, last night, Tucson Police, a different agency, said that the request had gone to the family that they make a plea to the public.
GRACE: Everyone, we`re putting up the tip line now, 520-882-7463.
Let`s stop and remember Army Specialist Hugo Mendoza, 29, Glendale, Arizona, killed Afghanistan, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, nickname Doc-Doza. A family clinic at Fort Bliss member named after him. Remember for his smile and loves food. Leaves behind parents Jesus and Sarah, brothers Carlos and (INAUDIBLE).
Hugo Mendoza, American hero.
Thanks to our guests but especially to you. And a special good night from Florida friends, Mark Lunsford, and his beautiful son, Logan. He shares the same birthday as his little girl, Jessie. What a blessing.
Everyone, tonight, we remember, late Atlanta, Fulton County Superior Court, Judge Roland Barnes, lost his life in the courthouse shooting, 2005.
Roland Barnes. Good night.
This week, National Crime Victims Rights Week. And tonight, we remember victims of the 2000 Wichita massacre. Five friends, two women, three men, held hostage. The women assaulted before all taken to ATMs, then shot execution style. One survives.
Reginald and Jonathan Carr convicted and sentenced to death.
Everyone, as the search goes on for 6-year-old Isabel, our prayers and thoughts with her family.
I`ll see you tomorrow night, 8:00 sharp Eastern. Until then, good night, friend.