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Missing Kids Mysteries
Aired December 26, 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: Gone, missing, children vanished without a trace. Tonight, "Missing Children Mysteries."
First to Maine, 8:00 PM, a 20-month-old baby girl goes to sleep in her own bed, 9:00 AM she`s gone. Just hours before Ayla disappears, Mommy secretly goes to court fighting for full custody, never sees her baby again.
In a stunning twist, investigators say they have grave doubts Ayla was ever kidnapped as evidence confirms blood found in the basement of Daddy`s home is that of toddler girl Ayla.
Did baby Ayla actually go missing long before police were ever called?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The search for Ayla continues.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is she OK? Is she laying somewheres dead? Is she safe?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Two dozen Mainers gather for an emotional vigil for 21-month-old Ayla Reynolds. The gathering of hope turned somber after news broke Maine State Police found blood.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The blood in DePietro`s (ph) house...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Blood that was found in the basement.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) blood.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The quantity involved, we do find that very troubling.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Blood was found in the basement of Ayla`s father`s home on 29 Violet Avenue.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you really want to know what my reaction is?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I do.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Her family again has gone through hell.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m ready to go knocking at people`s doors myself because I want to know what happened to my daughter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: With me right now is a special guest, Trista Reynolds. This is baby Ayla`s mother. Trista, thank you for being with us.
TRISTA REYNOLDS, AYLA`S MOTHER (VIA TELEPHONE): Hi.
GRACE: Trista, I know just -- literally hours before baby Ayla goes missing, you go to court to fight for full custody of your baby girl. And as of right now, you have not seen her since. What are police telling you about her disappearance, Trista?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: They`re telling me nothing. They`re telling me that we`re in the same place that I was on Saturday, that they don`t know what happened to her. They don`t know where she could be.
And all that`s running through my mind is, I know my baby girl. I know Ayla, and Ayla doesn`t sleep through the night. She normally gets up once or twice for a diaper change, to have a bottle, to just, you know, like -- like, I would check on her all hours of the night.
GRACE: Your baby is 20 months old. So I find it very hard to believe that she goes a whole night and doesn`t make a peep. And another thing, Ms. Reynolds -- everyone, with me is baby Ayla`s mother. If the night goes by, and say, I wake up around 2:00 or 3:00 o`clock and I haven`t heard from them, I go check on them because it`s so abnormal not to have heard from them by 3:00 o`clock in the morning, OK?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: Right.
GRACE: So that`s how typical it is for children that age to wake up during the night. Now, let me ask you this, Trista. Another thing that`s concerning me, at the time baby Ayla goes missing, her arm was in a sling. Why?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: A few weeks ago, Justin had given me a call and said that he was holding Ayla and they fell up, like, two or three little steps, and he fell on top of her and her arm was broken. And he waited over -- almost 24 hours to bring her to the emergency room.
I want -- I want reasons -- I want to know reasons to why -- why do you wait almost 24 hours to bring a child to -- he himself told me she screamed bloody murder when they fell, so you wait almost 24 hours to go have her checked out?
GRACE: Everyone, with us, baby Ayla`s mother, taking your calls. She is not afraid of the spotlight of the camera, or your uncensored calls.
Trista Reynolds, did the dad have any idea that you went to court on your own, no lawyer, nobody helping you, to seek full custody of the baby?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: No. I did not tell Justin that I was going to the court to file. Now, me and him had the discussion within that week that he -- he told me himself that he was going to file the custody papers against me, so I decided to go and file against him.
GRACE: All right. So he did not know, then. So in your mind, he did not know that you had filed the papers?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: No. I wanted him not to know that I was filing.
GRACE: Why? Why didn`t you want him to know?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: Why didn`t I want him to know?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: Because he`s been vindictive. He`s very verbally abusive towards me and anything that I say or do, he refuses to let me see my daughter. He has refused to let me talk to her. I mean, he has never, like, once, since he`s had her since October 17, has let me have her for one single day.
So I decided that it was time to do this the legal way and let a judge say who this child should be with. And my daughter does deserve to be with me. I`m the one who has raised her for 18 months.
GRACE: And goes without saying, risked your life to give birth. OK, let`s just throw that in there with the kitchen sink.
TRISTA REYNOLDS: But Nancy, there`s one thing I want to clear up with you.
TRISTA REYNOLDS: Someone just said that it was said Ayla had her own bedroom at her father`s house. She does not have her own bedroom. She sleeps in the same room with her cousin who is, I think, two months younger than her. So why wasn`t she taken -- if my daughter went missing, why didn`t her cousin, you know, at least make a noise or scream or be taken, as well?
GRACE: So you`re telling me, Trista, there would have been somebody else sleeping in the room with her?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: Yes. Like, I`ve been to that house myself and I have been in the bedroom to where Ayla sleeps, and she sleeps in the same exact room as Justin`s sister`s little girl.
GRACE: And how old is the little girl?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: I think she`s -- I think she`s, like, two months younger than Ayla.
GRACE: To Ronald Reynolds, Ayla`s maternal grandfather. Ronald, what do you know tonight? What can you tell me?
RONALD REYNOLDS, AYLA`S MATERNAL GRANDFATHER (via telephone): What can I tell you, Nancy? First of all, I want to thank you for doing what you`re doing, and I appreciate everything that everybody is doing. This (INAUDIBLE) it has torn me up! It has torn me up! We have done everything that the police and everybody is telling us to do, but it`s killing me. It`s killing me!
Let me tell you something. You know something, you cannot tell me that you don`t know what happened to your little girl, to my granddaughter, to my daughter`s little girl. You can`t tell me that. You can`t tell me that you don`t know what happened to her, OK? And the statement that you made in the paper this morning, that was a crock of (EXPLETIVE DELETED), OK? And pardon my English, but that was wrong, OK? Because everything that was said in that paper is wrong, all right?
How can you stand there and turn around and say that you don`t have a clue to where my baby girl is, OK, which is your daughter? How can you turn around and say that you -- oh, God, I don`t have a paper in front of me, and I`m really losing it right now!
You know, I just don`t understand this. I mean, why aren`t you out there screaming, yelling, fighting, doing everything that you possibly could to bring that little girl home?
GRACE: You know what else I don`t like, Ronald Reynolds? I don`t like that arm in a cast. So far -- and I don`t want to jinx it -- neither one of my twins have had broken limbs. And I don`t understand how this whole thing happened. I don`t understand how every time she`s with the daddy, something gets broken or she`s got bruises on her face, her arm`s dislocated.
I don`t understand how two babies can be in one room for 13 hours, and nobody checks on them? You know, just last night, I saw John David three times in the night and Lucy four times in one night, all right, 12:30 to 6:30, all right? So how can two infants be in one room, and nobody checks on them for 13 hours?
RONALD REYNOLDS: And not only that, Nancy, but the other thing that really bothers me is that his conflicting stories is that he put her down at 8:00 o`clock at night and got up in the morning to go -- repeat -- to go and check on her. Now, in the paper, it says that she was laying in bed with him. What is it?
GRACE: One year after the disappearance of 20-month-old baby Ayla Reynolds, the search goes on, evidence still being processed at the crime lab, investigators even reaching out to hunters in search of Ayla`s body.
GRACE: To the heartland, 10-month-old baby Lisa Irwin, sleeping in a crib just feet away from her own mother, goes missing without a trace, front door unlocked, front window open, every cell phone in the home gone. Grainy surveillance video emerges of Mommy shopping just before the baby vanishes. What does she buy? Baby food and a big, honking box of wine! Mommy knocked out drunk when the baby goes missing. Tonight, what happened to baby Lisa?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Little Lisa Irwin...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have been asked to come out here to find Lisa.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think the detectives are doing what people would expect they were doing.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The latest search, a lot of people here searching for Lisa Irwin.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That search didn`t turn up any kind of evidence or any kind of clues.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Investigators reportedly got surveillance video that shows the mother of the missing girl shopping with a mystery man.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) endeavor.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A neighbor told Fox 4 News she saw a man walking in the neighborhood with a baby.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Please, please, please, call the tips hotline if you know where she`s at! And if you have her, please, just take her somewhere safe. No questions asked. Just drop her off with somebody at a hospital, a church, the fire department, the police station, anywhere. Just please bring her home!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Came home from work, the front door was unlocked. Most of the lights were on in the house. And the window in the front was open. Obviously, all very unusual. And I started checking on the kids, checked on the boys first and then we checked on her. That`s when we realized she was gone.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These searches have largely been along this main route out of baby Lisa`s neighborhood, towards Interstate 35, which takes you into Kansas City and away from baby Lisa`s home.
There`s essentially two main roads out of this neighborhood. This is the one that would lead you towards the Festival Foods, where we know Deborah Bradley bought wine the evening that baby Lisa went missing. And it also leads you to the pond where investigators were searching.
Now we`re on a road called Choto (ph) Trafficway. That leads directly to the interstate. And only about two blocks down here from the pawnshop, we come to this tan house, also boarded up here. No one lives here.
This is a place police searched extensively after there was a report that a backpack, a children`s backpack and some diapers were found by some neighbors in the basement. Police were able to determine that those were old. They were not within the timeframe of this investigation. They seem to have cleared this house.
Continuing on Choto Trafficway, just before you come to the exit and on-ramp for I-35, come to this shopping center. This is Festival Foods. This is where Deborah Bradley bought some baby wipes, some other baby stuff, and a box of wine the night that baby Lisa went missing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Joining me right now out of Kansas City is "Lisa," who says she saw a man that night around 12:30 AM walking with a baby resembling baby Lisa. Lisa, thank you for being with us.
"LISA," WITNESS (via telephone): Hi. Thank you for having me.
GRACE: Lisa, please clear up for us what exactly did you see that night? What time and where?
"LISA": It was that evening at about -- between 12:10 and 12:15. My husband was leaving for work. And normally, he`ll just get in his car and just take off. Well, for some reason, that evening, he started looking down the street as if he had seen something.
And then all of a sudden, he said he was looking down the street and he ended up seeing a male (ph). He was concerned at that time, thinking that maybe this gentleman was trying to break in cars or something of that sort. So he kind of stayed there and kept an eye on him.
And then as he started walking up the street farther (ph), my husband noticed that he was carrying a baby in his arms. And that was kind of concerning to him because it was a chilly night, and the baby appeared to not have anything on but a diaper.
GRACE: Now, what can you tell me about this guy`s description, Lisa? What did he look like?
"LISA": The gentleman was a tall, very tall -- I would say 5-7 or taller, really slender. I mean, he was pretty thin. He wasn`t big at all, or not really muscular or anything like that. And from what we could tell, he had -- his head, from the street light it was really, like, shiny, like it was a bald head, like there was no hair at all.
GRACE: Could you tell if he was Asian, Hispanic, white, African- American? What could you tell?
"LISA": Based on the lighting, I could not -- we could not determine his race.
GRACE: But you saw a baby?
"LISA": That`s correct.
GRACE: Since initial questioning by police, baby Lisa`s mother now refusing to sit down for a one-on-one with investigators, who believe Deborah Bradley has key information to find baby Lisa.
GRACE: To Washington state and the mystery surrounding the disappearance of a 2-year-old little boy, vanishing from Mommy`s Acura sports car. Mommy says she runs out of gas, leaves the car on the side of the road, taking her 4-year-old little girl with her but leaving the 2- year-old behind, strapped in a carseat. Cops say no forced entry to the car, gas in the car tank, and it starts right up. So what happened to baby Sky?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Woman had thoughts that would not leave her mind.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our daily lives were like hell.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OCD, severe OCD.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Julia did make a statement that she ran out of gas, and that was the primary cause of why she stopped on the side of the road that day.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nothing prepared him for the news Sky has disappeared.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cops say it`s a, quote, "strategic decision" not to charge her for allegedly abandoning the baby.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The second polygraph that he has taken...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was my wife. She had a routine.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She could not handle the dirt.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Six to seven hours. She would clean the whole house. She kept on saying that she wanted to kill herself.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do we know more today than we did yesterday about what happened to him? I would say, no, we don`t.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sky`s mom still refuses to meet with police.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Keeping hope alive through faith that his son is indeed alive.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Solomon Metalwala is with us right now, joining us out of Seattle. He`s been leading the search for his son. Solomon, you voluntarily agreed to take a second polygraph after your first one was inconclusive. Did you take a poly?
SOLOMON METALWALA, MISSING CHILD`S FATHER: Yes.
GRACE: Well, good for you. Did you go to police headquarters to do it?
METALWALA: No. We went to the FBI headquarters.
GRACE: Oh, I see. So Clay, you guys went to the FBI?
LESLIE CLAY TERRY, ATTORNEY FOR SOLOMON METALWALA: Yes, we went down to the FBI headquarters in Seattle at their request. It was not taken by the Bellevue Police Department.
GRACE: Solomon, where were you at the time baby Sky went missing? Where exactly were you?
METALWALA: I was at home getting ready to go to church.
GRACE: Solomon, we`ve been doing a little bit of investigating. And it`s my understanding that there is actually a hospital very close to Mommy`s apartment. Number one, why was she taking Sky to the hospital? What was the nature of his illness? And two, why didn`t she go to Evergreen Hospital -- excuse me, Swedish Medical Center only a mile away? What do you know, Solomon?
METALWALA: I didn`t think about that. You know, I don`t know why would she go to -- only reason I can think of is maybe because she`s been to Overlake before. That`s the only thing I can think of.
GRACE: And what was the nature of his illness, Solomon? Why was he having to go to the hospital?
METALWALA: I don`t know. I haven`t seen him, remember?
GRACE: Clay Terry, what do we know? Because, you know, if you`re taking the baby to the hospital, it`s that sick you got to go to the hospital, the emergency room, why would you leave the baby in the car? What was the nature of baby Sky`s illness, do you know, Clay?
TERRY: Well, we`ve heard some rumors that she said the baby was ill and she was concerned enough to get up, get the baby dressed at 7:00, 7:30 in the morning, get the baby in the car, along with her daughter, strap them into their carseats and then take them.
And instead of going to Evergreen Hospital, she decided to go over to Overlake. And as Solomon said, it may have been because she was familiar with the hospital. But she even took -- I mean, we don`t even know -- we don`t know what was wrong and we can`t understand how anyone would leave a sick child in the car and then just leave them there for over an hour.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Although Mommy`s story does not add up in the disappearance of baby Sky, and she`s never come forward to search for or help find her son, Sky`s mommy has never been named a suspect.
GRACE: Two little girls, 10-year-old Lyric and her cousin, 8-year-old Elizabeth, riding their bicycles, Evansdale, broad daylight. Police discover the bikes, Elizabeth`s little purple purse, her favorite, and a play cell phone near local Meyers Lake, that lake completely drained, but no sign of Lyric and Elizabeth. It`s as if they vanished off the face of the earth.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The investigation continues into the discovery of two bodies that was reported on December 5th, 2012. At this time, we can confirm that yesterday, at approximately 12:45 PM, hunters discovered two bodies at Seven Bridges conservation area near Readlyn, Iowa in Bremer County. Those bodies have been transported to the Iowa state medical examiner`s office in Ankeny.
At this time law enforcement is confident, based at the - upon the evidence at the scene and preliminary investigation that the bodies found yesterday are those of Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins. Investigators from local, state, and federal agencies are continuing to investigate the disappearance of Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins in relationship with this discovery. New leads continue to come in to law enforcement and investigators are following up on those leads as well as information that is being derived from other sources. We are asking that anyone with information on this case, particularly involved suspicious activity and around the Seven Bridges conservation area to contact the Evansdale Police Department tip line.
GRACE: Lyric`s mother, Misty Cook Morrissey, Missy, thank you for being with us.
MISTY COOK-MORRISSEY, MOTHER OF 10-YEAR OLD GIRL LYRIC COOK: Yes, thank you.
GRACE: Misty, that day when she goes missing, let`s take it from the top. What happened starting in the morning?
COOK-MORRISSEY: I left for work at 8:30 a.m. She gave me a hug and a kiss and told me she would text me and let me know when I got off work where she would be, either at Heather`s in Evansdale or back at our mother`s home in Waterloo. I left for work at 2:00. My mother, Lyric`s grandma, called and said she couldn`t find them. They had been on a bike ride and, you know, to come directly to Heather`s home. I only work just up the street. I came directly there. My mom had been driving around looking for them. We stood in the yard and talked for a few minutes. Heather pulled up. Had not been able to find them. It was about 2:20, 2:30 p.m., and so Heather said I`m going to the police station and that`s when she went to the Evansdale P.D. to involve them.
GRACE: Now, Ms. Cook-Morrissey you were not too far away. Where do you work?
COOK-MORRISSEY: I work at Casey`s, it`s a gas station/general store, which is just a couple of miles up the road from where my sister lives.
GRACE: Miss Cook-Morrissey, where would the girls typically ride their bikes? And, listen, you are speaking to somebody who when we grew up we could get on our bikes and ride until it was supper time and that was OK. And in your area, it`s a very, very low crime rate. It`s a lot of rural, wooded area where you`d think girls would be safe. So tell me what`s their normal bike route or do they even have a normal bike route?
COOK-MORRISSEY: I don`t think they have a normal bike route but they are not allowed to just ride freely for hours or until dark. They do have a little bit of freedom, so they`re allowed to go, you know, maybe two or three blocks away and stay within those blocks. An hour, check back in is kind of the standard that we hold with them and mostly they stick with it. So it was very surprising to see that they had come this far if indeed they did, you know, ride this far.
GRACE: Had they ever ridden around Myers Lake before?
COOK-MORRISSEY: To my understanding, no. I`m not sure. I don`t think so. It`s quite a bit away.
GRACE: Did Lyric have a cell phone?
COOK-MORRISSEY: She has a cell phone that was at my mother`s, so she didn`t have one on her, no.
GRACE: Misty, I`ve spoken to the grandma. Let me ask you, would your girl have gone swimming? Would she have gone into that lake? Would she have jumped in with her clothes or stripped down and jumped in?
COOK-MORRISSEY: I don`t think she would have stripped down and jumped in. I don`t know if she would have went in in her clothes. We had spent the last six weeks at a lake swimming, George Wiss (ph) Lake. We`ve gone to Burns (ph) pool a lot. So we`ve been swimming, I mean, almost daily for the last six weeks. You know, so I don`t rule out that she would --
GRACE: Would she jump in, in her clothes?
COOK-MORRISSEY: It is unlikely with her clothes on. That I don`t think so. That I don`t think so.
GRACE: Well, her clothes haven`t been found anywhere. All that`s found are the two bikes abandoned on that bike path, a play cell phone, a cell phone that`s been deactivated that she could play games on and a little purple purse belonging to one of the girls. So they didn`t take their clothes off and jump in in their underwear. That didn`t happen or their clothes would have been right there. So my question to you is, would it be out of character for your little girl on a bike ride to jump into the water with her clothes on and her shoes?
COOK-MORRISSEY: That would be out of character, yes. I just started the job at Casey`s so the last five days Lyric and Elizabeth have been playing at Heather`s every day taking bike rides, so as far as a pattern, yes. Could somebody have been watching them there and seen that they play together, they hang out together this last week? Yes, that could have happened.
VOICE OF HEATHER COLLINS, MOTHER OF 8-YEAR OLD ELIZABETH COLLINS: I do pray to the Lord to let me dream with her in it and to let me hear her voice while I`m dreaming. I was lying in bed and he said, Heather, will you - you have to call the city hall (ph), and we don`t know what it is. And so I just had a gut feeling that it wasn`t good.
I was prepared for it. They told us of the crime scene, of the things that they showed us. It was - it was Elizabeth`s. All I know is that I don`t have my daughter here anymore, and she is up in heaven with our savior and that`s all I need to know. I don`t need to know how she was, you know, murdered. I don`t need to know what anybody has done to her. I don`t need to know any of that because that`s in God`s hands and God will take care of that person on Judgment day. We forgive whoever did this. And we still do. Whoever did this, we forgive you. It is not for us to judge you, to judge what you have done to my - you know, our beautiful daughter and our niece.
GRACE: The search for missing mom Lisa Stebic was extensive. It covered five different states. It involved police searching, volunteers searching, divers diving into retention ponds and searching. People on foot and on bikes looking in open areas and jogging paths. As of today, there is still in place a $75,000 reward to help find missing mom Lisa Stebic.
A two-year-old baby boy vanishes without a trace, Sacramento. After mommy hands the boy off, she says to women wearing burkas. Where is toddler boy Dwight Stallings?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A 22-month-old toddler Dwight Stallings ...
GRACE: Gone missing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Shocking claims.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She has told me that he was with someone.
GRACE: She changed her story.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The unthinkable.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The boy`s mother allegedly told a judge that she handed over her son, Dwight, to two women dressed in burkas, then simply walked away.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Walk free? She got out of jail after pawning off, according to her, her one-year-old baby boy, so she could, quote, clean her apartment. That she couldn`t clean out her apartment with a one-year-old and she hands the baby off, she says, to two unidentifiable women she had never met wearing burkas? Yes. Alexis Tereszcuk, senior reporter at Radaronline.com help me out here.
ALEXIS TERESZCUK, SENIOR REPORTER, RADARONLINE.COM : So, this woman claims she got a phone call from the relatives, she thought maybe they would be related to her husband. She met them, she said she left a sleazy motel -- I`m sorry, cheesy motel.
TERESZCUK: ... and then just handed ...
GRACE: The IFB is not working correctly, did you say she walked out of jail. Explain to me how that happened?
TERESZCUK: She was arrested. Child protective services started investigating this missing child. And she was ...
GRACE: They started --
GRACE: You know what, Alexis, they should have started, as usual, child protective services day late, dollar short, they should have started long before the child was gone. You know that child was mistreated. I don`t think that selling your baby on the black market really happens though as often as we think it does. Steve Moore, what about it?
STEVE MOORE: Well, I`ve seen cases where that has happened. It`s not something that you see a lot.
GRACE: Yes, and how often did you see that, Steve Moore, former fed with the FBI? How often did you see that as opposed to mommy killing the baby?
MOORE: Well, I saw it once in my career. The rest of the times it was mommy killing baby.
GRACE: You know what I`m so sick about, is some judge valued this child`s life so little, they let mommy walk. What about it, Steve?
MORRE: The judge could have let them walk out of just sheer incompetence or a bad decision. It could have been that the police wanted her out and put her under surveillance because once she`s in jail she`s not going to make the calls or go to the places they want her to go. They might want to do it as an investigative tool.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is Tenisha Edwards. The sheriff`s department says, her 22-month old toddler, Dwight Stallings, hasn`t been seen.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I see his face, you know. I remember his face.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Barbara Edwards is the grandmother of Dwight. Even she says that during the last ten months her daughter Tenisha, never brought her grandson with her when she visited.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I asked her.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (on camera): Any reason why? Did you ...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She has told me that he was with someone. I don`t know - because I don`t know her friends.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice over): Barbara admits she should have asked more questions, but also believes child protective services did not do enough to find Dwight or Tenisha. CPS wouldn`t comment on the case. But the sheriff`s department says they helped with four wellness checks on the toddler last year, never finding the mother or her child.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She`s been very uncooperative and given us several different accounts of where this baby has gone.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None of those accounts have led to Dwight. With almost no leads and no sightings of Dwight, investigators are left with little choice.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Obviously with the amount of time that`s gone by we have to consider the baby is no longer alive, but obviously we`re hoping that`s not the case.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tenisha has two other children who are now cared for by Barbara.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don`t know where he is. I don`t know if he`s sick.
GRACE: After mommy tries to link baby Dwight`s disappearance to his daddy`s relatives, Dwight`s father says he never believed mommy`s story and insists he has nothing to do with his baby boy`s disappearance.
GRACE: To Tucson, a parent`s worst nightmare. Mom and dad tuck their six-year-old little girl into bed, settle into bed themselves. The next morning daddy checks on Isabel, 8:00 a.m., she is gone. We learn Isabel usually sleeps with her two brothers, but not that night. Investigators execute search warrants at the family home even bringing in cadaver dogs. Where is six-year-old Isabel?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She is 5`2.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, I`m sorry, your daughter.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, my daughter.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: His whole demeanor, the lack of emotion.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She is like 44, 45 inches long.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My wife just got home and she`s kind of hysterical and freaking out.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It just boggles my mind.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get her back home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are close
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She is so full of life.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The window itself was completely open. There was no screen.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They had to have done something. I don`t know what they did. But oh, my God.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Please, look at her. Look at her.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don`t understand why or how we made Isabel a target.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because, you know, we`re her parents. So we`re like what did we do? How did we make her the target? And we`ve -- this is a nightly, daily hour thing that we`re like constantly thinking --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Constantly.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why isn`t Isabel -- and we don`t know. I have - we go through our heads, and who`s been in our house. And like we just said, for us we wanted anybody and anybody who`s been around Isabel and in our house to be questioned to the utmost the way we were. Just so that ...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To be all under the same scrutiny as us. Because we don`t know. And we`re going around and round and round and -- yes. It`s extremely frustrating.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Out to Joe Vega. He is a close friend of the Celis family joining us tonight in a primetime exclusive. Mr. Vega, thank you for being with us.
VEGA: You`re welcome, Nancy.
GRACE: Joe, a lot has been made of Sergio Celis laughing on the phone when he says he told his wife to "get her butt home." But what do you make of it?
JOE VEGA: He`s laughing because he said the word butt. That`s what I get from it. You know, Sergio, he doesn`t swear. He doesn`t -- he`s a real good guy. He hardly swears. I don`t think I`ve heard him say more than two swear words in the last four years I`ve known him. And also, I think the fact that he said butt and caught himself saying it, to him, you know, that was -- to him that was -- even saying the word. I think he just caught himself saying the word. I don`t read anything other than that into that.
REBECCA CELIS, MOTHER OF MOTHER OF MISSING SIX-YEAR OLD: The first week, honestly, all I wanted to do was just hide and cry. I didn`t want to be in front of you guys. And maybe that`s where we were supposed to be, but I couldn`t. I can`t. I didn`t want to. I wanted to be sitting in my room crying and it was hard enough to be with my kids and my family. Much less come and talk to you guys. So I`m sorry if we did this wrong and we were supposed to be out here. But that wasn`t my -- that wasn`t where I needed to be. I wanted to be with Isabel. I didn`t want to be here. I don`t want to be here. I want her here with us sitting, and I don`t want to be in front of the cameras. I don`t want my family to be in front of the cameras. What I want is her here home and just have a normal life. This is not what we want. And I`m sorry, but to be in front of the cameras and talking to media, this is -- that`s just not us. It`s not us at all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: As investigators continue to search for Isabel, her parents remain focused on finding their girl. The family hiring a private investigator.
GRACE: To South Carolina. Police search for an 18-month-old boy whose mother refuses to cooperate. Toddler Amir Jennings, missing for weeks, but nobody reports it. Mommy only turns up when she crashes her car. Then when cops put two and two together. She first says she doesn`t even have a child. Then she says the baby`s in Atlanta. Then uh-oh, he`s in South Carolina. Tonight, what happened to 18-month-old toddler Amir?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you have Amir --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Zinah Jennings is being held on $150,000 bond.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You need to call law enforcement immediately.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police have had no luck locating a one and a half-year-old boy.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At one hand the baby was in Atlanta and on the other hand the baby was in Charlotte.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you have seen Amir, you need to call us immediately.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The young mother of 18-month-old Amir Jennings, whose whereabouts are still unknown.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And she`s still giving us inconsistent stories.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Charged with child cruelty.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a criminal investigation at this point.
GRACE: The disappearance of young Amir Jennings now involves state and federal authorities.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our main concern is the whereabouts and the safety of this child right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Joining me right now, special guest chief Randy Scott, the chief of the Columbia, South Carolina police. Chief, if it weren`t for your motor men and women, we wouldn`t even have this mom, we wouldn`t even be on to baby Amir missing. This mom reported missing by her own mother. The grandmother reports her with the purple hair, that`s mommy. I know, scary but true. That`s the mommy. The grandmommy reports her and the baby missing. It wasn`t until mommy rams her car and crashes it that police find out she`s not missing at all. But where`s the baby? Chief, as I told you before, I don`t care if it`s for spitting on the sidewalk. I want this mommy behind bars. So what is she in for, Chief?
CHIEF RANDY SCOTT, COLUMBIA, SC POLICE DEPARTMENT: Yes, ma`am. She`s in right now for unlawful conduct toward a child. Until we can see what else is going on with this case. I mean, you`ve explained it very well. Just as confusing as it probably sounds to your listeners. It`s even more confusing to us at law enforcement.
GRACE: Chief, who is this woman, and when was the baby last seen alive?
SCOTT: Well, the baby was last seen with the mother on Thanksgiving. I just recently, up until about an hour ago, spoke to the grandmother. And the grandmother`s very concerned, very worried. And again, we`re just not getting any stories from Zinah that would lead us back to the baby. She was basically charged with unlawful conduct toward a child, and she even now, behind bars, she`s still not giving us anything to find Amir. And it`s not about Zinah at this point. It`s about Amir.
GRACE: After months of telling lie after lie, Amir`s mother, Zinah Jennings, convicted of unlawful conduct, sentenced to 10 years behind bars. Baby Amir still not found. Everyone, I`ll see you tomorrow night. 8:00 sharp Eastern. And until then, good night, friend.