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Violence Erupts in Court Outside Double Murder Trial; Fathers Fight at Little League Game

Aired July 9, 2012 - 19:00   ET


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I want to bring in Jane Velez-Mitchell. And Jane, some of this was spotted in the California area, around Santa Cruz. I think the concern is what do we do now as sharks are moving in, especially as their food is there?

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Well, I would say respectfully, leave sharks alone. The fact is, that according to the "National Geographic," you are much more likely to be hit by lightning than you are to die from a shark attack.

And in fact, sharks should be fearing human beings, because human beings, human activity, fishing, kills between 20 and 100 million sharks every year. We are decimating the shark population. The shark population has dropped by 30 to 50 percent from very barbaric practices, including slicing the fins off of the sharks to make shark fin soup, which is a practice that now is being banned in some areas.

So I pray that we show compassion to the sharks, as well.

Now, we begin tonight with some astounding video of a fight between two families involved in a double murder trial in Florida. And there is an amazing twist. It is yet another case involving that controversial "stand your ground" law.


VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight, a courthouse fight so outrageous you have to see it to believe it. A man says he gunned down two brothers in self-defense. And when those two families collide in court for a "stand your ground" law hearing, even more violence breaks out.

On the heels of the George Zimmerman case, what does this say about Florida`s controversial "stand your ground" law? I`m taking your calls.

Plus, Little League violence erupts as fists fly between parents of opposing teams. What should happen to these parents? And what kind of a message does this send to their kids about sportsmanship?

And breaking news out of Hollywood. We`ll tell you about the latest stunning twist involving superstar Tom Cruise and estranged wife Katie Holmes.

Plus, secrets of Scientology exposed. Was Tom`s strong ties to the controversial religion behind the couple`s split?

Also, you won`t believe what convicted wife killer Scott Peterson is doing now and why he claims he`s the victim of a mob mentality.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: At a Florida courthouse this morning, man oh man, people started throwing punches, causing an all-out brawl.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This fight occurred between the family of the victim and the suspect`s family in this, wow, double murder case.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, pure chaos outside a Florida courtroom. A violent confrontation erupts between the relatives of two murdered brothers and the family of a man charged with killing them.

Good evening. I`m Jane Velez-Mitchell joining you live. It all happened as the families left court today. Watch.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, you got something to say to me? [


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get your hands off me! Get your hand off me!



VELEZ-MITCHELL: All of these people were in court for a "stand your ground" hearing related to the murders of two brothers outside a Florida bar.

This man, 28-year-old Jason Clair, is accused of gunning down the two brothers after a fight. You obviously have to see that this is a very, very bloody mug shot.

Well, turns out that after the shooting cops say bar patrons grabbed this guy`s gun and beat him within an inch of his life even before cops arrived on the scene.

Jason Clair now claims he shot the two unarmed brothers multiple times. Here are the two men who are now tragically dead. He claims he shot them multiple times in self-defense. And his lawyers are claiming it`s a "stand your ground" shooting. Hmm. Sound familiar? "Stand your ground." The very same controversial defense being used by George Zimmerman, who admits gunning down unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

So what made the families in today`s confrontation react in such a violent way at that Florida courthouse? Is this "stand your ground" defense sparking extreme outrage? Is it essentially a way to kill and then blame the dead victims who cannot speak out in their own defense?

What do you think? Call me: 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297.

Straight out to Florida criminal defense attorney Mark Eiglarsh.

You`re in Florida,, where all this is going down. Mark, the Zimmerman case, the latest case, both really revolving around this controversial Florida "stand your ground" law. Is this essentially accusing the dead people of not being victims, asserting that they deserved to die, which has to be infuriating to the families?

MARK EIGLARSH, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: This is not about "stand your ground." This is about people who obviously have anger issues.

I go to court every day and have for 20 years, and there`s plenty of people who are at odds in the courtroom, but when we leave, you know, people go their separate ways. This is about anger. And anger is one letter shy of danger.

And what I`ve learned is anger is fear turned outward, and depression is fear turned inward. Obviously, these people have anger issues. Maybe rightfully so. They need to deal with it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but is "stand your ground" provoking more rage than you would normally see in a courtroom?

Let me -- let me give you some back story. Today`s brawl, you have three disturbing elements. It concerns a crime that involves a bar that had a 25-cent beer night, which a -- it`s a very, very bad idea in it of itself. Twenty-five cent beers. Then you add in the "stand your ground" law. And then you add in a gun. Is that a deadly combo?

Cops say the two brothers, James and Joel Kun, both in their early 20s, were shot at point-blank range outside this St. Cloud, Florida, bar.

Last year, by the way, after several fights broke out during this 25- cent beer night, cops say the suspect, Jason Clair, who are you heard was beaten up by the patrons after the shooting, had been in a fight with the brothers and then returned with a gun.

So I want to go to Jon Lieberman, HLN contributor and investigative reporter, who joins me here on set. Give us the details of this shooting, and is it a stretch to call it a "stand your ground" self-defense shooting?

JON LIEBERMAN, HLN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, it is a stretch to call it "stand your ground." It`s almost like we`re in a society down there where it`s like shoot first, then figure out a way to call it self-defense and "stand your ground."

The facts are these, and for "stand your ground" to work in this case for the defendant, they are going to have to go after the credibility of 15 witnesses who tell the story like this.

A brawl breaks out in the bar. Then it goes outside. Jason Clair, the defendant, actually leaves. He drives away. He comes back 20 minutes later. A second brawl ensues with these two brothers. Then he goes back to his vehicle, now a third time, to get a gun out of his car, and then comes back and allegedly shoots these two men at point-blank range.

If he had time to go back to his vehicle to get the gun, then conceivably, he had time to drive away and get himself out of that situation. This did not have to result in murder.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. And I look at this horrific brawl at the courthouse, and I think, well, if my two kids were just shot dead, and then somebody turns around and says, "Hey, they deserved it. I did it in self- defense," depriving even then the right of saying, "I`m the victim here," I think it could create a lot of rage.

Let`s go to Sherry in North Dakota. Your question or thought, Sherry.

CALLER: Yes. I`m Sherry from North Dakota. I think that they should abolish the "stand your ground" law. All it does is give the people that are carrying the guns the reason to shoot instead of the cops. They`re doing the cops` jobs. They want to be cops themselves. And nothing happens but murder and all this chaos and stuff. And it shouldn`t even be allowed at all.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I think you`re making some good points.

The whole world, of course, learned about Florida`s "stand your ground" law when 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed by volunteer watchman George Zimmerman.

Now Zimmerman claims self-defense, but he`s now charged with second- degree murder. He got out on bail for the second time, by the way, just this past Friday, and he is now being held in an undisclosed safe house, for reportedly his own safety.

Joey Jackson, criminal defense attorney, the commonality here is the "stand your ground" law.

Now this shooting that sparked this particular brawl here today happened long before we ever knew about George Zimmerman or Trayvon Martin. But the "stand your ground" defense was just recently claimed. OK. So I`m wondering did the defense lawyer say, "Hey, I`m seeing this big case here with George Zimmerman. I`m going to say that my client shot these two brothers in self-defense. I`m going to use that `stand your ground` law," Joey.

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY (via phone): It really is a fair point. And I think the problem with the law in general is that it emboldens people to take action which could conceivably be avoided.

And in this instance, as Jon Lieberman was alluding to earlier, the facts are, as he mentioned, and as has been reported, it was 20 minutes. He went; he went to his car. I mean, certainly, he could have driven away.

So I think will be a tough call for the defense to use it. But I think overall, Jane, what we`re going to see, we`re going to see reform. Not only in Florida, but Florida is highlighted because of these events we`re speaking about now and with Trayvon Martin. But we`re going to see reform, you know, throughout the country, so that you can prevent tragedies like this from happening, for sure.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I agree. And you see the emotion. You see that vigorous emotion.

One of the folks involved in that brawl, all of them, are related to one side or the other. And so, you have to wonder, with this "stand your ground" law, is it a temptation, especially when you got some 25-cent beers at the Dugout Pub -- which I think they should outlaw 25-cent beers -- to settle a score and then call it self-defense?

And by the way, these are some of the folks that were arrested in that brawl. For as you see, the father of the two young men who were killed, James Kun Sr., and the stepfather of the suspect. Those were essentially the men involved in this brawl.

I want to go out to the phone lines. Keith, Ohio, your question or thought?

CALLER: Yes, Jane. I believe that the "stand your ground" law should be adapted by many of these states in the United States. In today`s society, people`s mentality, they have no respect for each other no more. And the people that are -- look at that guy, how bad he got beaten up by two different guys. What if -- what if that was a policeman being beaten up by two different guys and the policeman shot?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jon Lieberman. Thank you, sir. Thank you Keith in Ohio. Yes.

LIEBERMAN: Let`s clear up. Most of those injuries in that mug shot were from him being beaten up after the fact. After he fires the gun. That`s what those injuries are. So those injuries, most of them are not results of this brawl.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Mark Eiglarsh, you don`t see the connection here, the chain reaction of violence? You`ve got a bunch of guys who are drinking, and then all the sudden, "Oh, I`m getting beaten up or I`m having a fight? You know, they call the gun the great equalizer for a reason. Because it is very tempting to take a gun out of somewhere and settle a score and then call it self-defense after the fact.

EIGLARSH: Jane, I agree with you in some respects. But the issue is not the "stand your ground" law. How about this? Should we eliminate the consent argument in rape cases, because it`s so offensive to the victim`s family? But that`s not the issue. It`s the individuals involved.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And by the way, multiple shots. This guy is claiming self-defense, and he shot both of these brothers multiple times. How is that possible, Jon?

LIEBERMAN: Well, that`s the thing. To Mark, I mean, there are legitimate cases where "stand your ground" is legitimate. But I think Mark could even say, this has become the de facto defense in Florida. When in doubt, claim "stand your ground."

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let`s hope it`s a trend that doesn`t continue. Because these family members have to be going through hell right now.

Now check out this wild video. Parents, parents throwing punches at a Little League game. What on earth is going on?




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What are you doing?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ugh. What was supposed to be a fun Little League game turns into a stomach-churning brawl. Cops say two dads get into a fist fight.

So much for the cherished boys` baseball league built on the honorable conditions of good sportsmanship and grace in defeat. Oh, the irony on this one.

The brawl broke out right after a game this past weekend in Columbus, Georgia. Now hats off to the little boys in uniform. They weren`t the ones fighting. It was the parents.

Cops say two dads were rooting for their sons, who were on opposing teams. They ended up being charged with disorderly conduct. We don`t want to sweep everybody here with a broad brush. Some of the people were just bystanders or even trying to break it up.

Witnesses say the fight wasn`t even related to the play on the field. Apparently, one of the men was playing loud music after the team he was cheering for won.

ABC News is reporting he was playing "All I Do is Win," Auburn University`s fight song. He was asked to turn it down. Words were exchanged. And well, the rest, as they say, is history. Check it out.




VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Now we don`t even know if these were dads. They were two men on the team. But that makes it worse. They`re not even parents of the people who were involved in this game. What kind of message are these adults sending to the kids? Where is the civility? The honor and defeat. The grace that should come with victory? What can we do to stop this really juvenile behavior by adults that is seen all too often on the edge of the field? Give me a holler: 1-877-JVM-SAYS.

I want to go out to Arnie Spanier, sports radio talk show host. You, I understand, have a son. What is your reaction as a sports person to this scene, this video?

ARNIE SPANIER, SPORTS RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: You know, Jane, as a sports person, I got to tell you, it`s atrocious. It`s disgusting. And you hope that never happens to you.

As a father of a 14-year-old hockey goalie, what do you say -- And I don`t want to lose my temper. But what do you say to a parent when your kid gets him the bad goal and he`s dropping "F" bombs and your kid sucks.

Do you just say, "Yes, thank you. My kid sucks. Thank you very much"? Or do you stand up for your kid so at least he knows that his father is there to back him up? But I don`t think throwing punches. But what do you do, Jane? Do you just let them bombard your kid like that?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I just think there is absolutely no justification and no excuse for any of this behavior. Remember, this isn`t supposed to be about winning. It`s supposed to be about building character. And honestly, Arnie, I didn`t expect you to give you that answer.

Jon Lieberman -- I love you, Arnie, but I couldn`t disagree with you more. There is no justification for this kind of behavior. Jon Lieberman?

LIEBERMAN: Here`s what stuck out to me, too, about this video. It`s a kid`s voice you hear saying, "Someone call the police. Someone`s going to be hurt."

A kid. You have all the grown-ups huddled, basically letting these two hustle. You have to hear a kid say, "Somebody better call the police."

And I`ve got to disagree with Arnie. I mean, you can stick up for your kid without getting into an all-out brawl in front of all the kids.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Look, an official of the league said, "It`s about the most disgusting thing I have ever seen." And he said, "I`ve been in Little League all these years, and I`ve never seen anything like this."

But he says they don`t have the authority to punish the parents. So I`m really without words at this point. Arnie! Arnie!

SPANIER: Jane, it`s not that I condone violence. Of course, it should never come to something like that. But sometimes you want to stick up for your son. You want to stick up for your daughter and as a parent. And everybody who has kids out there, know where I`m coming from. When you hear the comment and you hear the bad words, do you just sit there? You can`t see how you want to stand up and say, "Hey, why don`t you just pipe down and watch the awards?"

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No, no, no. What you do is you turn to your son, and you say, "Look, this is something that you`re going to have to deal with in adulthood, people who don`t play fair. Life isn`t fair. And so this is a lesson for you that, just because somebody acts in a certain way doesn`t mean you need to lower yourself to their level.

What we need to have compassion for somebody who is shouting curse words because they`re probably unhappy, and they even may be in some way, shape or form sick. So let`s -- let`s have compassion for what they`re going through and not lower ourselves to that level.

Phone calls on the other side.





VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. That`s just the same brawl from another angle. There were a lot of people with their iPhones and their various other smartphones recording this thing.

Want to go to Mark Eiglarsh, who`s not only a fantastic criminal defense attorney but a father of three. In fact, one of his children is with him.

You heard what Arnie said. What`s your reaction to, "Well, sometimes you`ve got to stand up when somebody is, like, shouting nasty things at your kid"?

EIGLARSH: Well, listen, Arnie is not wrong, because there`s no right or wrong in my world. He`s entitled to his opinion. What I...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wait a second, there`s no right or wrong in your world? That`s a shocker to me.

EIGLARSH: Well, you know what? I try not to...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Proceed. Proceed.

EIGLARSH: Jane, I try not to judge. You know, Arnie can do what he wants to do. I teach my offspring, my precious tax breaks, that when you go up to someone, it`s OK to show them love and if they don`t show you love back, you walk away. Your ego is not your amigo.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Arnie, do you want to clarify your position on this?

SPANIER: Jane, again, I`m not saying you start duking it out with the other fans or with the other parents. But I`ve seen things and I`ve heard things that just -- it wants to make your blood boil. It really does.

I teach my kid after every day, you shake your coach`s hand, the opposing coach`s hand, the referee and the other team. And he does it to a "T."

So maybe sometimes I can learn from my own kid. But when you hear the words and you hear the comments, I just say sometimes you just want to say, "Hey, pipe down, there`s no reason for that. You can`t be saying that in front of a bunch of kids." Sometimes you feel like you have to stand up for your kids, Jane.

Don`t you ever feel like that? That you had enough? You hit your boiling point?

LIEBERMAN: Jane, in Arnie`s defense, Mark has a cute kid sitting with him. So Arnie is at a disadvantage right there when you compare what he`s saying.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: A very cute kid. A very cute kid.

LIEBERMAN: So come on, Arnie, get a kid with you.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, that`s it.

SPANIER: Here`s my 14-year-old. And I teach him. I say, you shake everybody`s hand and look up.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh! There`s...

LIEBERMAN: There we go.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: No, listen, I get it. If somebody attacks your kid verbally.

But that`s what I`m saying. There`s a lack of civility at these games. And people have to realize it`s just a game, and the whole point of it is to teach children what they`re going to experience in real life, which is not necessarily that everything is fair.

Maybe the wind is going in the wrong direction. Or your coach is a little, oh, biased against you and favors some other kids. That`s life. And that`s what they should be learning. Not this win at all costs.

Let many go to Willie May in Florida. Willie May, your question or thought, Willie May. Willie May?

All right. I tell you what, I`m looking at this game, and I`m seeing also parents living through their kids a little too much. Get a life, people. It`s nice that your kids play sport, but I think that some people get wrapped up too much in the activities of their children.

It`s also tied to social status in the community. It`s bragging rights. If your kid is the winner of a game or does the scoring touchdown. So all of that is about ego. Ego, ego, ego. You`re seeing a lot of ego here. And remember, what you really want to teach kids is humility.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Their marriage began as a fairy tale. Let`s be honest. Made for the movies.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She said Tom`s poster once hung on her bedroom wall.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This went from what a lot of people might be a publicity stunt to something a little bit strange.

KATIE HOLMES, ACTRESS: I feel like the luckiest woman in the world.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People couldn`t understand why the two of them were together. There`s a huge age difference. They were at very different places in their careers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Cruise`s representative said it was Holmes` decision to end the marriage.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What may have led Tom-kat to turmoil.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Her main concern is her daughter`s best interest.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean, who knows? The fact that we haven`t seen her, this could actually get pretty nasty.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Breaking news tonight: Tom and Katie reach a settlement. And it could be the speediest divorce settlement deal ever. It has been less than two weeks since Katie Holmes filed for divorce. And just hours ago we learned she has filed an agreement with Tom Cruise. It seems they fell out of love as quickly as they fell in love.

You remember this, of course, from Oprah.


OPRAH WINFREY, TALK SHOW HOST: We`ve never seen you behave this way before.


WINFREY: Have you ever felt this way before?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: After five years of marriage, actress Katie Holmes suddenly filed for divorce while her "Mission Impossible" star husband was in Iceland, of all places, filming a movie calling "Oblivion", of all things. Tom said he was stunned.

Soon after reports that Katie wanted sole custody of their six-year- old daughter, Suri, and speculation swirled that the divorce could get ugly. Then boom, suddenly a settlement.

Straight out to TMZ news manager Mike Walters; Mike what`s the inside story on this settlement? What do you know?

MIKE WALTERS, TMZ NEWS MANAGER: Well Jane, we have some details of the settlement. What I can tell you is they spent four days in New York hashing this thing out. Lawyers spent every day together trying to figure out these minute details. And I can tell you it`s very, very detailed.

What I do know is that Katie will have primary custody. Tom will get a lot of visitation and custodial time with his daughter. I can tell you that Suri is going to be exposed to some religion. You know, Scientology was a big deal during the beginning of this divorce when they first started the proceedings. She will get some of it, but a little bit at a time. What we`re told is as she gets older, she`ll be exposed to more stuff and be able to make her own decisions.

There is several stories out there that are completely false about Katie having her bodyguard and nanny with Tom the whole time. There`s stuff about them moving the divorce to California. All this stuff is wrong.

Basically, it`s very detailed. The $275 million, you know, big bulk of money here, we still don`t know exactly how that`s going to be hashed out. But I can tell you, there will be some Scientology, but Suri will live with Katie Holmes and spend most of her time with Katie.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: What do you mean, there will be some Scientology?

WALTERS: Well, you know, Jane, in the beginning we were told that Katie`s people were saying that she doesn`t want Suri to have any connection to the Church of Scientology, and that was the main reason to get out now in the divorce.

That was still true during negotiations. But what they decided on is to have some exposure, limited and very detailed into what they can and can`t tell her or show her for now. As she gets older then is she going to be exposed to more items in the church and even whatever religion Katie Holmes decides to raise her daughter in. She`ll get some of it, but very little for now, until she`s older.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let me read something from Katie`s reps and lawyer because they sent this, and they want this to be read. "There are numerous inaccuracies in the reports regarding the purported contents of the agreement reached between the parties. The agreement is confidential, and its terms will not be disclosed."

And so I can tell you that we have heard everything from, oh, she`s going to get $3 million for every year of the five-year marriage, which would amount to $15 million. He`s worth $270 million. The point is, we don`t know about the money.

But I want to go out to a very special guest who can talk about the other aspect, the Scientology aspect. Karen dela Carriere is the ex-wife of the former president of Scientology International, which is simply one part of the church of Scientology.

Now, Karen was with the church for 35 years, but I understand you left, and you are now an outspoken critic. So I want to stress that you have a grudge. You`re not an independent observer here. You have a real rift with the Church of Scientology.

You claim you were excommunicated because of your defiance and that just recently your son passed away, and you claim the church did not notify you, and you had to find out through Facebook.

So Karen, you`ve been quoted as saying it is suffocating when Scientology becomes the third person in your bed. It`s an intrusion. You`re straight jacketed. We`ve reached out to the church for a response. We never heard back. Scientology is invited on our show any time.

But what do you mean when you say Scientology becomes the third person in your bed?

KAREN DE LA CARRIERE, FORMER MEMBER, CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY: Well -- you know that David Miscavige went on honeymoon with Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. Since --


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I don`t know that. I have no independent confirmation. Let me just ask you in general what you meant -- names aside. I have no independent confirmation of that. But what did you mean in essence when you said that? And why do you feel that that might be a factor in their divorce?

DE LA CARRIERE: Because Katie Holmes` staff would have been Scientologists that reported to David on her every move. Scientology would be intrusive into every aspect. When a person is very high profile, Scientologist is embedded in every aspect of their lives.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Like what? What aspect?


DE LA CARRERE: Well, if your staff that work for you are all Scientologist that reports to the church. If your -- the intrusion is that Scientology lives with you 24 hours a day. Isn`t that intrusion?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: If that were the case, but again, I have no independent confirmation. I wanted to ask you, you have been involved in Scientology. You are no longer involved.

DE LA CARRIERE: Jane, you have to talk -- Jane, I don`t just fantasize. I`m very plugged into the Scientology community. I`m even in communication with people who know the staff and independently aside from this three or four minutes we have, anything I say can be backed up by documents or people who were right there at the time.

I`m not just saying stuff to you that I make up. The fact that David Miscavige went on honeymoon, there are pictures of the honeymoon all over the world with David Miscavige, Katie and things -- all over the world. Just Google images.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ok. All right. And again, I have no independent confirmation. We will check that out. And he is invited on our show, just to be fair any time.

DE LA CARRIERE: By the way, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes? Go ahead.

DE LA CARRIERE: You are a kindred spirit. I`m very big animal activist. And the reason I agreed to come on is I`m vegetarian vegan like you. And you are a kindred spirit on animal abuse. Just so you know.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, thank you. Well, I always speak out for the animals. They are voiceless and they cannot speak out for themselves.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, we do have that in common. And thank you for that.

I`m just asking you in general because I cannot speak to the people who you name. So that`s what I`m saying. If you speak in generalities, you can describe what you`re saying is a problem with the marriage as opposed to --

DE LA CARRIERE: Well, the person you should --


VELEZ-MITCHELL: I`m talking to you right now. So tell me in general why you feel Katie Holmes might have, in your opinion, felt that Scientology was a negative impact on her marriage. That`s what I want to ask you in general terms.

DE LA CARRIERE: Because the Internet videos, Anderson Cooper, history of violence, "St. Petersburg Times" have numerous videos. I think the atrocities on the darker side of Scientology resonates all over the web, all over YouTube.

Google David Miscavige abuse, David Miscavige beatings. You get 380,000 hits. I believe that some of the darker side of Scientology trickled through to Katie. And she heard it -- she heard what happens.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: Karen, thank you for your input. Just give me one second. I want to also talk to Lisa Meyer, family law attorney and celebrity divorce attorney. But to your point, Tom Cruise has spoken out about what scientists call suppressive persons, which they all call SPs for short. That`s the term used for people who try to impede the mission of Scientology. And listen to this from the Church of Scientology.


CRUISE: So I said, are you an SP? I looked at them, you know, and thought what a beautiful thing because maybe one day it will be like that. You know what I`m saying? Maybe one day it will be that. Wow, SPs, they`ll just read about those in history books.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lisa Meyer, family law attorney, celebrity divorce attorney, I`ve heard that you have dealt peripherally with Scientology divorce. What are your thoughts on this? Could Scientology have been a factor in the divorce?

LISA MEYER, CELEBRITY DIVORCE ATTORNEY: I have represented Jane, many spouses that have gone through divorce that are Scientologists. And frankly speaking, their divorces really are no different than any other person`s divorce.

What I think the real issue here is, is when you marry somebody and you are different religions, and you can`t reconcile those differences, as you continue to be married and you can`t work those things out, they`re going to pretty much eventually destroy your marriage. And it looks like those are some of the differences that occurred in this marriage that impacted this marriage. But there`s probably other factors as well.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, let me jump in and just ask you about Suri because Suri was obviously a main focus. And as a six-year-old, this is the time when you start thinking about schooling and about religious education. Thoughts, Lisa?

MEYER: Well, yes. That`s true. But Katie knew from day one what Tom`s religious practices were. And I don`t know what really changed. So the fact that Suri is now six years old. I don`t really buy that. I think what really happened here is I think Kate Holmes grew up. Katie Holmes grew up. She`s now a mature woman. And she wants her own independent life. And it just wasn`t working with Tom.

Not only do they have the religious differences, which were probably pretty massive. But also he was gone all the time filming. He was in Iceland, as you pointed, out when she filed. And she probably wants a real partner in life and he`s not working for her anymore.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, in a joint statement, Tom and Katie said they`re working together as parents. They want their privacy. And they seem to acknowledge the Scientology scrutiny, in any case, saying quote, "They express our respect for each other`s commitment to each of our respective beliefs. Final thought, Lisa Meyer.

MEYER: I think that was very carefully crafted, and I think the message that they wanted to impart to the public is very clear. "Stay out of our public lives -- the public stay out of our private lives. And we are going to work together because we are going to expose our daughter to each of our religious practices and belief." There is no doubt about that when you read that.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Our "Viral Video of the Day" -- a scary scene. A big rig crashes into a gas station.






UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Convicted killer Scott Peterson, he`s appealing his death sentence.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was convicted eight years ago and sentenced to death for murdering his pregnant wife Laci and dumping her body into the San Francisco Bay on Christmas Eve.

SCOTT PETERSON, FOUND GUILTY OF WIFE`S DEATH: I had nothing to do with her disappearance, but people still accuse me of it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Obviously we plan on pursuing every and all appeals.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We the jury in the above entitled cause fix the penalty at death.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The court could look at this and say, you know something; he was deprived of a fair trial. There`s at least a possibility of a new trial.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: One of the nation`s most notorious convicted killers wants to get off death row, and right away, apparently. Will Scott Peterson`s brand new appeal get him a new trial? Peterson was convicted of murdering his pregnant wife Laci and then dumping the body into San Francisco Bay on Christmas Eve 2002. He was found guilty. He was sentenced to death. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Has the jury arrived at a verdict with respect to the penalty phase in this case?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have, your honor.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Read the verdict.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People of the state of California versus Scott Peterson. We the jury in the above entitled cause fix the penalty at death, dated December 13, 2004.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: But now Peterson says that death sentence should be overturned. He says the jurors were unfairly influenced by a mob of more than a thousand people waiting outside the courthouse who cheered the jurors after they found him guilty. We have footage of that cheer. Decide for yourself.




VELEZ-MITCHELL: And we are just absolutely delighted to have a Scott Peterson juror on the phone with us. You`ve written a new book called "We the Jury", Mike Belmessieri. And I hope I said your name right. What is your reaction to Scott Peterson wanting a new trial because you were cheered and the other jurors were cheered after convicting him?

MIKE BELMESSIERI, AUTHOR, "WE THE JURY": Yes, I`ll tell you, first of all, when people cheer that day, we all were pretty upset about hearing it because we didn`t see anything that was there to cheer about. But this nonsense about the jury being influenced by the media is absolutely, completely and beyond a shadow of a doubt absurd.

There`s no way we would have sent an innocent man to San Quentin, especially the death chamber. I mean, how crazy? I mean this guy lost his family. What greater injustice could be done if we were to convict an innocent man of that crime? That`s absurd.

And the very idea -- the very idea that anybody would think that that happened is just -- to me, it just really upsets me.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: We asked for your pet pictures and you have sent us some great ones. Here are today`s "Pets of the Day". McKenzie and Cooper, way to go.



AMBER FREY, SCOTT PETERSON`S EX-GIRLFRIEND: When I discovered he was involved in the Laci Peterson disappearance case, I immediately contacted the Modesto Police Department.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s Amber Frey, Scott Peterson`s ex-girlfriend. Gloria Allred, you represented her. She had no idea he was married. What do you say to this idea that there`s no evidence against him.

GLORIA ALLRED, VICTIMS` RIGHTS ATTORNEY: Well, obviously, the jury decided that in fact there was evidence beyond a reasonable doubt sufficient to convict him and in addition to recommend a death penalty.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but I mean -- agreed. He lied to her. He told her that he was a widower even before his wife went missing. Didn`t he say that he was in Paris to Amber Frey when he was actually at a vigil for his missing wife?

ALLRED: And that was so shocking -- you`re absolutely right, Jane. And Amber Frey my client, who didn`t know that he was married to Laci and was dating him, she was very brave and she (inaudible) recorded telephone calls that Scott Peterson made to her at the vigil and at other times. She did so at the request of the police and she put her own life at risk as a result.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`re on a mission to live better. Part of this puzzle of how are we going to help Americans get healthy is to get rid of the fake food.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As a vegan now, I have a lower likelihood of diabetes, including also cancer, obesity, stroke, all the nation`s top killers.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, "Venture to Slim" continues. Yes, you can burn fat on the treadmill, but you can also burn fat by just eating one of seven fantastic super foods. Christine Avanti is "Skinny Chicks Eat Real Food" author. Tell me, what is it about artichokes?

CHRISTINE AVANTI, AUTHOR, "SKINNY CHICKS EAT REAL FOOD": Oh my goodness, Jane, artichokes are amazing. They have a carbohydrate in them called inulin (ph) and what that does is it actually decreases the hunger hormone ghrelin.

Weight loss and weight gain is all about hormones. And when you`re eating food that actually can decrease the hormone that makes you feel hungry, you`re doing yourself a big, big favor. The other thing about artichokes is they have compounds in them called (inaudible) acid which actually helps detox and cleanse the liver. And if your liver is detoxed and cleansed, your body is going to actually be speeding up its metabolic rate at a much faster pace than normal. So it`s a good thing to eat artichokes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I love what you`re teaching us. Also ginger, you say is very good. And look, the proof`s in the pudding. Take a look at Christine. Does she look great or what? Come on. Christine, let`s see her. Let`s see her. There you go. You have the secret formula.

And you want to look like Christine. Eat the super foods.