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CNN Larry King Live
Expert Panel Discusses Elizabeth Smart Cases
Aired June 14, 2002 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: Tonight, what could be a major development in the search for 14-year-old schoolgirl Elizabeth Smart.
Bret Michael Edmunds, the focus of an all=points bulletin and one of the biggest manhunts in Utah history could be in custody in Texas.
Edmunds spotted in Elizabeth's neighborhood before she was kidnapped. He was also spotted at the vigil in a local park after she was taken at gunpoint from her very own bedroom.
At the same time, Salt Lake City police continue to look intensely at the missing girl's own extended family. Search dogs in the home, more polygraphs, alibis put to the test. Speaking for the Smart family tonight, one of Elizabeth's uncles, David Francom joins us.
Then with the very latest on the countless twists and turns and a heart-wrenching case. John Daly at KSL TV, plus world-renowned forensic expert Dr. Henry Lee is with us, former FBI special agent and veteran profiler Gregg McCrary. In L.A., high profile defense attorney Mark Gereragos weighs in, and here in D.C., former federal prosecutor Cynthia Alksne. All that and more next on LARRY KING LIVE.
Hi, welcome. I'm Nancy Grace in for Larry King tonight. Let's go straight to the scene where the uncle of the little girl is joining us live, speaking out tonight, David Francom. Hi, David.
DAVID FRANCOM, UNCLE OF ELIZABETH SMART: Hi.
GRACE: David, the family has been through so much, including having the finger pointed at them. Tonight, how are the parents of Elizabeth Smart, Lois and Ed?
FRANCOM: Lois and Ed are an incredible example of strength through this. They have relied on faith and hope, and they really do believe, as the whole family does, that Elizabeth is alive and will be returned.
GRACE: You know, David, that has been a consistent theme throughout every press conference, every statement the family has given. Never once have they suggested they do not believe Elizabeth is still alive. I know it's your faith. I know that deep down inside of you, you want to believe that. But do you have any evidence that Elizabeth is still amongst us? FRANCOM: To my knowledge, we have no physical evidence of where she is or what has happened to her. It's just really, like I said, a faith and a hope and a real belief.
GRACE: You know, I know you're dealing with so much tonight. The loss of Elizabeth, wondering about her whereabouts, and now many, many people are pointing the finger back at the family. I know that's taking a toll. Tell me.
FRANCOM: Yes, it is a stress, of course. It's a stress for people to think that one of the family members could have done something like this or had any part in it. But being a member of the family, I realize what a leap -- you know, it's so illogical that it doesn't bother me, other than it does hurt, you know, the investigation and the efforts.
GRACE: David, apparently practically everybody in the family has been strapped to a polygraph machine. Have you been polygraphed yet?
FRANCOM: You know, I have been asked by the police not to reveal any information about the investigation. Just -- we don't want to jeopardize any aspect of it. I can tell you, though, that I've cooperated in everything they've asked me to do, and I know that everybody else has as well.
GRACE: What is the latest in the mind of the family regarding the possible capture of Edmunds tonight?
FRANCOM: We are hopeful. Until Elizabeth gets back and to her home safe with her parents and family, we can't let up for a minute. Yes, we are hopeful that this is the person or that he knows something about it. But like I say, we can't get diverted until we have reached our goal of getting her back.
GRACE: We have heard reports that the property of the extended family members has been searched. Is that true?
FRANCOM: Again, they are turning some of their focus -- as the police should do, I believe, and as the rest of the family believes, they do need to check all of these avenues, they need to check every possible aspect of where Elizabeth could be. As I said, I cannot comment on specifics, but whatever they want, whatever they have asked, of course we've cooperated.
GRACE: I understand every time the police give a conference, give a statement, they tell us that the family is cooperating. Other than asking you for polygraphs, what have they wanted you to do?
FRANCOM: Well, of course they ask us questions, and we respond to them as honestly and as openly as we can. Other than that, you know, with my brothers and sisters and nieces and nephews and cousins, we've been out searching, but that's on our own efforts. We've been wracking our brains to try to figure out what could have possibly happened to cause this to come about.
GRACE: Well, David, a lot of speculation has been stirred up because of reports that the window in the home, the alleged point of entry, was actually from the inside out, that the screen had been cut on the inside going out. Is that true?
FRANCOM: Well, again, that's an investigation matter. I don't have the liberty to speak about any of those aspects.
GRACE: Have you seen the window? Have you looked at it?
FRANCOM: I did receive a phone call the morning that this happened. My wife and I went up to Lois and Ed's home, along with the rest of the family, to give comfort to Lois and Ed and to try to make sense of this whole thing.
Ever since the beginning we thought we were going to find Elizabeth, and it's going to happen soon. We are just, I guess, incredulous that this could have happened to begin with, and that it's continuing.
GRACE: On that visit, when you got there, David, is that when you saw the window that's become the focus of so much speculation?
FRANCOM: You know, it was a time that was so difficult to see what was happening with my sister and with Ed. The grief, the pain, the sorrow. The police were there. You know, I can't jeopardize any aspect of the investigation. I just can't. I'm sorry.
GRACE: I know that must have been a heart-breaking thing when you got there. You got there early in the morning, right?
FRANCOM: It was early, yes.
GRACE: What was it like going in at that time? Going into the home?
FRANCOM: Well, this whole time has just been a nightmare. It's been something that it's hard to really connect that it's real. You know, we expect some day we will wake up and it's just been a dream. That's what it's been, a very bad dream. But amidst it all, we have also received so much outpouring of love and help in the community. The media -- the, you know, individuals that don't know us, that are so sincere and so helpful and so full of love, that write letters, that, you know, poems, that ask what they can do to help.
Each individual just wants to help, wants to give us their love and support and to help find Elizabeth, and that has been a tremendous strength and support, and we appreciate that. I know each one of us -- Lois and Ed are tremendous in their appreciation for the people who have helped to do this. They are overwhelmed with the love. They're such a remarkable couple, and their family are just remarkable.
I increase my admiration and respect for them tremendously through this. I hate that they have had to go through this, but I see their strength and it's wonderful.
GRACE: The other night, I was speaking to Tom Smart, another uncle of Elizabeth. You have a very big family, David, by the way -- 70, at least, extended. Well, lucky you.
FRANCOM: We do.
GRACE: Let me ask you this: you have so much family support. The other night we were speaking with Tom Smart, and he told me that he believes the kidnapper is not a bad person at all, that it's just someone that actually likes Elizabeth. Why?
FRANCOM: I cannot imagine what a person would be like who would do this to a 14-year-old young woman. I can't imagine. I'm sure that the person must have some sort of a sickness, a problem, you know. Do I hate that person? No, I feel very, very sorry for him. And I hope Elizabeth is safe, and we've got to believe and hope that she is.
GRACE: You know, also, Tom, again, stated that the kidnapper is someone that actually likes Elizabeth. There has been a lot of speculation about that, with the kidnapper actually letting her go back to get shoes, so she would not be barefoot when she left the home. Is that where the speculation comes from, that the kidnapper likes Elizabeth, cares for her welfare?
FRANCOM: Well, my understanding is that that idea -- I think it came from an FBI profiler or somebody of that nature, that made that sort of a statement, that they must have cared for Elizabeth to allow her to do that and get her shoes and so on.
But my opinion is, if somebody takes a person, a 14-year-old child from their home at gunpoint or whatever else that we, you know, know about this case, it couldn't possibly care for her or for her family. Does that make sense? I just don't don't see how that could be the case.
GRACE: Yes, it's just so hard, I agree with you, to comprehend the mind of someone that could do this, especially at gunpoint. But I understand the little sister, the 9-year-old little sister, is firm that the perp came in with a gun.
FRANCOM: That's my understanding. I know that the police have spoken with the 9-year-old sister and, of course, I'm not privy to what they found out, other than what we have all heard on the news. She is also a 9-year-old. She is also very afraid, very concerned, very confused, I'm sure, about what's going on.
So I just rely on the expertise of the police and their efforts and the detectives and their training to understand and make sense of what she did see.
GRACE: Before I let you go, David, again, I want to thank you for being with us at a time that is very, very emotionally wrenching for your family. Has the family heard, as of tonight, whether the person in custody in Texas is actually Bret Michael Edmunds?
FRANCOM: The last I've heard, which was just only maybe 10 minutes ago, they don't know if he actually is or not. That's my latest update.
GRACE: David Frankom, thanks so much for being us, and our heartfelt thoughts go out to the family.
FRANCOM: Thank you. Thanks. Thank you.
GRACE: Everyone, we are going to take a break. When we come back, we are going live to Salt Lake with the latest on the investigation. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CYNTHIA SMART OWENS, KIDNAPPED GIRL'S AUNT: I have a message for this perpetrator. God knows where you are. God knows where Elizabeth is, and we are praying with all our hearts to find her. The satisfaction that you might have dreamed of, of having Elizabeth, cannot possibly be there. And the best you can do is to let her go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Welcome back, everybody. Thanks for being with us tonight. I'm Nancy Grace in for Larry King. Let's go to live not to John Daly there in Salt Lake. He has been on the case from the beginning. Hi, John.
JOHN DALY, KSL TV: Hi, how are you doing, Nancy?
GRACE: I'm doing great. Fill me in on the latest.
DALY: Well, as you said at the top of the show, police are looking into whether the man that was apprehended in Texas, in Littlefield, Texas is in fact Bret Michael Edmunds.
At this point they are not saying for sure whether he is or not. We have got some interesting information about Mr. Edmunds, but it's not really clear whether he's the guy. We do know that, of course, a milk man spotted a suspicious car in the Smart neighborhood two nights before the kidnapping. Then the night of the vigil, Bret Michael Edmunds was believed to be spotted at that vigil.
GRACE: Incredible that he would come back to the vigil, John.
DALY: Yes. The other interesting thing is that the license plate that identified the car that they were looking for, this green Saturn, were found in a town north of Salt Lake here also yesterday. So we have those two pieces of information that came out yesterday. And then today we had these reports of a string of car thefts down in the New Mexico, Texas area near the border there, and a man has been apprehended.
It's believed there was a convenience store clerk who believed that he identified Edmunds or someone who he thought was Edmunds buying or trying to steal a bottle of water.
GRACE: Right, that would be Gloria Grajeda. She is going to be with us in just a few moments, everyone, the clerk that actually, we believe, has spotted Edmunds in a convenience store. John, what's intriguing to me is that if this is Edmunds, the man is incredibly elusive.
We have got him in Salt Lake City, we've got him dumping a car, a car, he's got many, many cars, apparently, at his disposal in Colorado.
Then he pops up in Littlefield, Texas at a 7-11 to buy some water. How is he managing to elude police in three states?
DALY: We have got to keep two things in mind. One, this may well be someone else and not Edmunds in Texas, so we're not sure if it's him. The other thing is the time frame here. Remember, the kidnapping was last week. It's been more than eight days now since that happened, so the possibility of being able to travel -- you know, especially if you're driving a lot, from Utah, perhaps to New Mexico and Texas, that's certainly possible, given the time frame.
GRACE: And to make it back to Salt Lake in time for the vigil for Elizabeth, very, very unusual. Question regarding the investigation has two tracks as of tonight. Let me talk to you about that, John Daly. The police still say, even though they are continuing to look for Bret Michael Edmunds, that they do not believe he is responsible for the kidnap. We also see the second track, the insider track, so to speak, where police seem to be still intensely looking at the family. Can you give me any update as to whether or not the break-in was staged?
DALY: Well, I think at this point, what we have is -- the police are essentially not telling us a whole lot. They may know a lot. But they're not telling us a lot. What they have said on the record is that there is some physical evidence inside the home. They have not confirmed what that is. They said they have the witness, the 9-year- old sister who was there in the bedroom, and they think she is a good, credible witness.
That's all they are really saying on the record. Whether there is some evidence regarding this screen that could perhaps be promising, whether they think Mr. Edmunds is the guy that they are looking for, whether it's the extended family -- they are really being very tight-lipped about it, and maybe because they have a lot of information they don't want to give out, they don't want to ruin their case. It may be that maybe they don't have as much as we like to think that they do...
GRACE: You know, John, they have made no secret -- they continue to state over and over and over and over in press conferences that they do not believe Edmunds is responsible, but yet the heat is still on to locate him. John Daly, thanks so much. Right now I want to go to the young lady, the woman, the 7-11 clerk, as we have been calling her. Gloria Grajeda, she is with us live. Hi, Gloria, are you with me?
GLORIA GRAJEDA, STORE CLERK: Yes, ma'am.
GRACE: Hi, Gloria. Tell us what happened.
GRAJEDA: I happened to be outside in the parking lot where I work at. The guy came through the side of the parking lot from the store, and then he went inside the store. I went in right behind him. He walked toward the refrigerator to get a bottled water. When he got the bottled water, he came to the counter, and he put the bottled water on the counter. He had a (UNINTELLIGIBLE). He gave me a credit card. I scanned his credit card, but his credit card was denied.
GRACE: Didn't you scan it twice, Gloria?
GRAJEDA: Yes, I did. I scanned it again, and I told him that his card was denied.
GRACE: Hold on. How much does a bottle of water cost?
GRACE: And the credit cad was rejected. Did you see a name on the credit card?
GRAJEDA: No, ma'am, because we scanned the card, and it automatically scans the numbers to the card.
GRACE: Then what happened?
GRAJEDA: So then I told him that it had denied his card. He had asked me if he could stay until the manager got there, because he didn't have any money. I told him, it was fine. But then after that, I had three customers that came in, and when the three customers came in, well, he had told me he had a bus ticket that he was going out of town, because one of his brothers had died. And he had said that that bus ticket wouldn't take him all the way to Amarillo, so that he was going to have to walk to Amarillo. So then I started attending one of my customers and he walked out with the bottle of water.
GRACE: So he did not want to stick around for the manager to show up, I take it?
GRAJEDA: Well, after he walked out, I didn't have a choice but to call the cops.
GRACE: Yes. Did the cops come? Did they take fingerprints?
GRAJEDA: No, ma'am. She got there, and she asked me the description, what he was wearing, and which way did he go. I told her which way he went, and more likely how much he weighed.
GRACE: What led you to think it was him, Gloria? Have you seen his photo?
GRAJEDA: Well, see, what happens is that -- I mean, I work -- I am close to two years working nights. I'm already used to seeing my same customers over and over again. So usually you can tell when a person is not from here because -- you know, you can spot them right away, that he's not from here. Earlier in the morning when I got back home, the police station called me, and they told me the -- go in for I can go see a picture that they had.
GRACE: Gloria, we have got to take a quick break. We'll be right back. You stay right there, Gloria. Everyone, with us by phone is Gloria Grajeda. She is the young woman that possibly has made an identification in the Elizabeth Smart case that could crack the investigation wide open. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CAPT. SCOTT ATKINSON, SALT LAKE CITY POLICE: He was in fact seen at the candlelight vigil last Sunday. At that point he got in his car and left and was not pursued.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: In a case that seems to have stymied police for now heading into week two, it seems as if, once again, they have come up empty-handed. Lamb County, Texas authorities have just told us here at LARRY KING LIVE it's not Edmunds, it's not Bret Michael Edmunds, so once again, starting at square one.
With me there on location, covering the case for KSL TV is John Daly. Also with us tonight, world renowned forensic expert Dr. Henry Lee; Gregg McCrary, former FBI special agent and profiler; high profile defense attorney Mark Geragos weighs in; and Cynthia Alksne, former federal prosecutor. John Daly, back to you. Are you surprised, or is this beginning to become routine for the investigation?
DALY: You know, it's been a case that's already seen a number of twists and turns. Some days we go up to the press conference and we're loaded with all kinds of questions because there's an interesting report that's been in one of the papers, or there's a rumor or some kind of speculation swirling around. And the questions get asked. This is like a number of the things that have come up so far.
This, obviously, as you are reporting, is a dead end. That's been par for the course. I mean, some of these cases obviously take a long time to solve. We know why now.
GRACE: Gregg McCrary, question to you. We have seen, obviously, two tracks of the investigation, the insider track and the intrurder track. You have been a profiler for years with the FBI. At the beginning, police insisted this was not a random act. What does it mean?
GREGG MCCRARY, FORMER FBI PROFILER: It's clearly a case of victim-targeted crime. This girl was abducted from her own home. We know, typically, about abduction of teenagers, especially teenage girls. GRACE: This is not a normal teenage abduction.
MCCRARY: No, it's not, because they typically occur in that 14- to 17-year-old range. There is a risk in that category, because these kids now have less parental control, they are hanging out at malls and going to arcades, meeting people and crossing paths with other people, and yet they don't have a lot of good judgment yet, and they make some mistakes, and they either get conned into getting into a car with somebidy or abducted or whatever.
GRACE: So this is totally aberrant.
MCCRARY: Right. That's totally different than coming in someone's home at gunpoint and taking someone out of the house, so this is different than a random selection, or if some very disorganized offener drives down the street and snatches a kid...
GRACE: Well, have you seen a look at that house? I mean, Elizabeth Smart, besically, was living up in -- it looked like the turret at the top of the home. This is a 6,000 square foot, million dollar home. It's difficult for me to believe a transient, a drifter comes in off the street -- the alarm doesn't go off, the dog doesn't bark, nobody screams, she goes back to get her shoes, leaves without a trace.
I mean, take a look at this. It's right there, I think. That window that was her bedroom, Gregg McCrary. He must be clairvoyant to be able to go in in the middle of the night in the dark and find a girl.
MCCRARY: That's the point. The point is that he has some prior knowledge, perhaps. But what I don't know, we'd like to know, is how much time he spent in the house. Was he rummaging around looking lost or did he go right up there and grab the girl and leave?
GRACE: Dr. Lee, we have been told repeatedly that the intruder came in with a gun. Now, what do you make of that as far as burglaries go? It seems seldom that burglars, routine burglars come in armed.
DR. HENRY LEE, FORENSIC EXPERT: Yes, very unusual for burglar to armed with a gun. Of course, we don't know what nine-years-old sister, what her statement, what her statement, what -- her description of the weapon -- just a black gun. Is that a revolver or a semi-automatic?
GRACE: Would it make a difference, Dr. Lee? I mean, to me the point is, you've got an intruder making their way straight to the girls' bedroom with a gun. This is certainly not a burglary gone wrong. This girl was targeted.
LEE: Yes, exactly. I agree. That's a targeted, selected target. And the gun basically can help us to develop leads. Is that a real gun, or a tall gun, or just an intruder threatened nine-years- old sister saying I have a gun. Or in fact, she saw a gun. Those are the questions we have to ask. Of course, the cut in the screen still, though we have to go back to the basic, the point of entry. If the car is from inside or from the outside, a U-shaped car is from the left hand or right hand. How high is the car? Is that the whole -- the diameter, whether or not somebody can actually go through the hole?
GRACE: Right. And Dr. Lee, I agree with you. I find that the most troublesome bit of evidence we know so far. We've been told so far. Police are playing it so close to the vest.
Let me go to you on that, Mark Geragos. We're taking trickles and bits from what the police tell us. Very often, when they are questioned, they keep it close to the vest. They don't tell us anything. But I find it highly unusual that there's been an all- points bulletin for Edmunds, but yet police insist publicly, not only is he not a suspect, the standard line, we heard it in the Blake case for three months, but also he's got nothing to do with this. They've been very blunt.
MARK GERAGOS, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: And at the same time, we've got all of these sightings like he's Elvis and he's all over three different states. And he's got cars, and then he doesn't. He's got other cars. This is the most well-to-do transient I've ever seen.
This guy not only can apparently get into houses and get to second floors and in and out in three different states. I just think way too much has been made of this gentleman, Edmunds. I think the police realized that way too much has been made of this guy. And I think that's why they've tried to get the focus back in the direction of where it probably should be, which is that this just seems awfully odd that somebody was able to get in there, get out of there with virtually no detection by anybody whatsoever.
And then there's -- without a trace, basically, this young lady disappears. And there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to it. And it just -- the whole thing seems odd to me. And I don't understand at all this focus on the transient. That just does not make a whole lot of sense to me.
CYNTHIA ALKSNE, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: No, I'd to agree with Mark on that. And remember also, this guy Edmunds, his entry-level crimes are fraud and assault on a police officer. That's not a sexual perpetrator, burglar, kidnapper, entry-level crime.
GRACE: But Cynthia, there's a first time for everybody.
ALKSNE: And the first time is not...
GRACE: I agree.
ALKSNE: ...going into a 6,000 square foot house when you're a transient and you have no assets and sneaking in the house. That's not the first -- it's a peeping Tom, those are entry-level crimes.
GERAGOS: Exactly. Some kind of a mood conduct. It's something -- you build up to these things, Nancy.
GERAGOS: This isn't something where somebody comes in and executes this, what looks to be the perfect entry and exit with a 14- year-old. And at the same time, cares about taking her and having shoes put on her, and everything else. None of that rings true with this transient who's supposedly trying to buy a bottle of water for $1.59. How does he did buy the gas to get there?
GRACE: Mark Geragos, yes, right. Mark Geragos, stay right there. Everybody, we will be back. Stay with us.
GRACE: Welcome back, everybody. I'm Nancy Grace in for Larry King tonight. Thanks for being with us.
Let me go to you, Greg, on this issue of dumping the car, license plates found, abandoned in the field. We think they went to the car that was spotted in the neighborhood just before the abduction. The man is everywhere, but it comes back for the vigil. What does it mean?
MCCRARY: Right. If he was at the vigil, that certainly is something that you weigh in this. I mean, what's the draw? What's the reason to come back?
That's one of the -- the issues with Edmunds is they simply have to put him in or out of this thing. They can't ignore him. They can't pretend he doesn't exist. But he may be artifact to the crime and to the case. But yet, in the course of police, you got to be thorough with the investigation. And they simply have to put this guy in or out.
ALKSNE: Nancy, the guy lived in the neighborhood. He was a homeless guy. Somebody else in the neighborhood two days before called and complained that he was sleeping...
ALKSNE: ...you know, in his car near his house. OK, now there's a vigil. You're a homeless person. You have nowhere to go. You have no money. There's all these people. That's what you do. I mean, that's not necessarily the kidnapper returns to the scene of the crime to participate, you know, in some kind of John le Carre sort of perfect thing. It maybe that that's where he lives is basically that park.
GRACE: Well, it could be. But if he's so easy to find, then why the heck has he eluded police in three different states? You know, I smell a fish here. And coming back to the vigil, it reeled with implication, in that so often we see criminals come back to the scene. They just got to stay part of it.
MCCRARY: Yes, sometimes they do. But I don't know that this is the case. Like I say, we just got to put this guy in or out of this thing.
GRACE: Mark -- yes.
GERAGOS: Yes, I just -- I don't think you can put too much into that, Nancy. I mean this idea that he's back at the vigil like some kind of a Forest Gump at every single scene that we go. Or we've got people calling in from convenience stores who spotted him there, and people going down and finding his license plates in other spots. This guy does not seem to me to fit anything in terms of what we're talking about here. You've got somebody who doesn't fit the description that was given. You've got somebody who, by all accounts, does not seem to be the brightest bulb or the sharpest tool in the shed here. So this does not strike me as...
GRACE: Well, he's certainly outsmarted authorities in three states. He's got something going on.
GERAGOS: I don't even know that he's been in three states. I mean, I don't even buy that at this point. I mean, I'm not sure that this guy isn't probably within 10 miles of this whole area here at this point, and he's ditched the license plates because he's probably got some misdemeanor warrant out for him.
ALKSNE: He has two warrants out on him. I mean, he may be sitting in a parking garage in some different car drinking beer, listening to the radio.
GRACE: Dr. Lee, if this was the car, in fact, the car in question that was dumped in a field, what will they expect to get out of that car?
LEE: Well, that car, of course, we first have to know is that in fact his car. And of course you can check out...
GRACE: Well, Dr. Lee, I can promise you it's someone else's car that happened to fall into his hands, but what kind of evidence can we get out of that car?
LEE: Of course, we're looking for fingerprints. If he was arrested before, we should have a fingerprint on file. A comparison of fingerprints. Or if he smokes or not. Don't forget, police receive 8,000 some tips. Like when we have a case -- investigation, many time we have so many tips, wild goose chase. Unfortunately, all of those leads, police have to check that out. Not necessarily the transient definite, associated with the case. I agree with Greg and Mark. But unfortunately, those we have to check about it. That car, if in fact it's his car, definitely we should find some information. Dirty clothes because he lived in the car. We should find something about him.
GRACE: You know, Dr. Lee, we were talking last night about various facts of the case. What sticks out the most to you, Henry Lee?
LEE: Well, if it's case -- if my case, the first thing I have to decide, you know, look at a logic analysis, is she walk away on her free will? Or in fact she was kidnapped? If she walk away on her will, somebody have to know her very well, assist her. A 14-years old young lady just walk away, disappear. If, in fact, it's a kidnapping case, of course, is that an inside job or unknown intruder or acquaintance? So basically, you look at the family members, acquaintance, or a total stranger. By the process of elimination, then we can use physical evidence. Our witnesses try to narrow down the potential pool of suspects.
GRACE: And of course tonight, as all focus is on Bret Michael Edmunds, if he's not the right guy, he is simply siphoning off police energy from the real perp. Everybody, stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LOIS SMART, ELIZABETH SMART'S MOTHER: Elizabeth, we love you. The world loves you. Everybody's praying for you, thinking about you 24 hours a day. I want you to know, Elizabeth, that you're going to be home with us soon. And we can hardly wait. Be strong. Know that the heavenly Father is with you. We love you so much.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Welcome back, everybody. I'm Nancy Grace in tonight for Larry King.
Let's go back to Salt Lake City with John Daley. He's covering the case for KSL-TV.
John, all along, police kept telling us, he's not a suspect. He's not a suspect. But searching for him with helicopters, multiple helicopters overhead seemed to add to the frenzy, seemed to increase the importance of finding Edmunds?
DALEY: Yeah, I think it's been very aggressive, the efforts that they have taken to try to find him. But all along, they've been saying this is someone that we want to talk to. They say he is not a suspect. Captain Scott Atkinson today said he is not involved in the case. So they've never said anything to lead us to believe that he is the guy that they're looking for. Apparently he is one of many people that they want to talk to. And it may be that it's taken on a life of its own more than they have planned. But beyond that, they've always maintained that this guy is not a suspect.
GRACE: And it all started with the milk man. Remember, the milk man thought Edmunds was casing his milk truck and steal milk from him. And now you've got helicopters, you've got searches going over three state boundaries. Where will it end? I don't know that.
Let me go to you, Mark Geragos. What's disturbing about this is that if it's not Edmunds, if he's not the legitimate suspect, he is siphoning the energy of the police in their search for the real perp. And in this case, there's a suggestion Elizabeth is still alive. And minutes could actually count tonight.
GERAGOS: Well, look, there's no question with the complete lack of evidence of anything, that the most important thing is that they've got to marshal whatever resources they have in trying to find her. I think the milk man's right. I think if there was anything that was logical about what we've heard so far, it's that this guy, who's a homeless person, who was probably thirsty in the morning and was casing the milk truck to get some milk. I mean that makes perfect sense to me. But if this idea that some how...
GRACE: But on the other hand, Mark, you can't fight with the fact that he's there, near the house, in the cul de sac...
GERAGOS: Right, I understand.
GRACE: ...within 48 hours of the girl disappearing.
GERAGOS: I understand that. And I think exactly what the police were looking for they wanted to find this guy to see if he saw anything. And next thing they know, they've created this whole frenzy. And the police didn't do it. I don't think they intentionally put it out there so that this guy was somebody who would become the public enemy -- or number one suspect. I think what happened is they can't get the genie back in the bottle at this point.
GRACE: Right. Well, the helicopter thing didn't help. You don't look for a regular witness with an all-points bulletin.
ALKSNE: No, you don't. But meanwhile, while they've been doing this, they've also been working on what is probably their more substantial area of investigation, because we know in these cases, most of the time, it's a family member or an acquaintance...
GRACE: So you're saying the police are hiding the ball from us?
ALKSNE: Well, why shouldn't they? It is their job not to tell us. That's what's in the best interest of the case. That's the ethical thing to do. And they're doing a good job here.
And some interesting things are happening that we do know about. We do know that they're questioning these family members. And they're giving polygraphs on the family members. There are, you know, rumors about what the reports are. Something fascinating, though, happened on this show. When Tom Smart was interviewed, there was a textbook example of what young prosecutors are taught about in examinations of potential suspects, will anybody minimize the behavior of the suspect. Is anybody relating to the suspect? Is anybody forgiving of the suspect?
And that is a red flag. I'm not saying that this man Tom is a suspect. But when asked about what do you think of the kidnapper? He says, "I believe that this person is not a bad person at all. We all have issues. We understand that everybody has issues. He actually likes Elizabeth." Now as a young -- or I mean, as any prosecutor or any investigator would look at that and say -- in a case when maybe it's an inside job, and maybe somebody has an inconclusive polygraph, which is what we're hearing...
ALKSNE: ...that this is somebody they need to look at. And they don't want to talk about that, because it's not nice to talk about.
MCCRARY: As the first guest we had on here, the family member said he thought that came from an FBI profile. In some cases, we coach family members to talk about an abductor in...
GRACE: Friendly terms?
MCCRARY: Conciliatory terms because we -- the behavior we want to reinforce is they'll take care of the victim.
MCCRARY: We don't think they intend to hurt the victim. We think they care for the victim. We think they're going to look out for her well being. We do that in these, we call non-traditional infant abduction cases...
MCCRARY: ...all the time. So if he was coached to say that, then that doesn't have any meaning at all. Then it kind of, you know...
ALKSNE: Right. I mean, I certainly hope that. They clearly have talked to the FBI profilers. Everybody had. The unit was out there. And we do know that. But all I'm saying is, as you analyze a case, these are important types of statements that investigators look for.
GRACE: Let me ask you this. If it had been a true pedophile, wouldn't the perp have gone for the nine-year-old girl? What does that signify to you?
MCCRARY: And that's an important point, because what we want to remember is this is an intruder, who came and who targeted her, and came in and abducted her for sexual reasons, which is the typical sort of reason teenaged girls are abducted.
GRACE: But searching the state, I mean ransom only happens in South America and in Hollywood, right?
MCCRAY: Right. What we find -- we don't want to get too narrowly focused on pedophiles or the child molester per se.
MCCRARY: Sometimes children are...
GRACE: Why? Why else would they take her?
MCCRARY: Because children are often sexual substitutes. Their primary sexual focus could be with adult females, but they're so socially incompetent that they can't kidnap or abduct or coerce or con or use a ruse on an adult. So even though that's their sexual target, they shift their target to a substitute victim, such as a child. So the important thing here for the police and for the public out there, especially, is to be aware of that. And anyone -- any adult female that had been targeted, especially in that neighborhood, I mean peepers or prowlers, guys looking in the window. I mean I've seen phone calls.
GRACE: I don't think this is the kind of neighborhood where women are targeted. I mean, the house is a $1 million house.
MCCRARY: It's exactly...
GRACE: Totally upscale.
MCCRARY: Wait a minute, it's exactly where the neighborhood where it was targeted, because that's exactly what we had happen in this case. We've got a young girl that's been targeted. So...
GRACE: I mean multiple women being attacked or assaulted or targeted.
MCCRARY: I'm talking about peepers, prowlers.
MCCRARY: I've seen phone calls, any sort of nuisance sexual offense, anything going on that they might have dismissed because they were an adult. And the crime is with the child. But it can be the same offender. So we -- my point is you got to broaden our horizons, not just stay narrowly focused on pedophile or sex offenders.
GRACE: Everybody, we are taking a quick break. The search for Elizabeth Smart continues. Stay with us.
GRACE: We are headed into week two since the disappearance of 14-year-old school girl Elizabeth smart. Once again, coming up dry, the man that had been taken into custody. We are told by Lamb County, Texas authorities is not Bret Michael Edmunds. Once again, starting over at square one.
Welcome back, I'm Nancy Grace from "COURT TV" in for Larry King tonight.
Dr. Henry Lee, let me go to you. I find this incredibly interesting and telling that on day eight of the kidnapping case, police get some inkling, get some evidence, and choose to bring in sniffer dogs into the home. What does it mean?
LEE: Well, we know there are some facts here. Middle of the night, very nice neighborhood, 6,600 square foot house. And somebody breaks in, cuts the screen, a small kitchen window, and with a gun. So of course, with all of those known facts, we're going to focus in the neighborhood, bring the dog back to search again. That's really the correct procedure, to check every inch around the area. And did we miss anything. Then from that area, we narrow it down. Of course any lead coming in, you have to check. Edmunds is one of the leads. Police have no choice...
LEE: ...but to check.
GRACE: So in your frame of mind, Dr. Lee, you see all of this as SOP, standard operating procedure? Maybe you're right.
But Cynthia, we know that typically, statistics indicate the abductor is within a family/friend range. So I guess you could consider this normal. But I find that unusual on day eight, what possible evidence could come to their attention that they think we've got to go back in with dogs again?
ALKSNE: Well, the point is they don't. So they have to try to do everything. It's the same thing with going through these family members. And I want to be clear about this one family member we brought up. And that is, they have to do everything. They have to do all of these interviews. And they have to use whatever they know, whatever tools that have worked in other cases.
And when we talk about this one family member's statement on "LARRY KING LIVE," you know, we're not saying oh, this family member must have done it because he minimized the conduct of the kidnapper. All they can do is say okay, in the last 15 cases, it's the person minimized. Is that something we want to look at?
GRACE: Exactly, exactly.
ALKSNE: We certainly are not -- this family's going through enough pain. We're not trying to give them any more pain. We're just trying to explain what the police do, and how they look for red flags, and how they try to go through everything.
GRACE: We -- and let me go to you, Mark. We are only asking the questions that are obvious after day eight, day nine goes on in the investigation. You see the police conducting polygraphs, going into the home with sniffer dogs. You have you have to put the evidence together and come up with a picture. What is your take as of tonight, Mark?
GERAGOS: That they are completely frustrated. I think the reason that you've got the search dogs going back in there...
GRACE: You know what? You said that in the Blake case, too.
GERAGOS: No, I didn't say that in the Blake case, because I think in the Blake case from early on, they were trying -- no, no, that was you that said that in the Blake case is that you couldn't understand why they hadn't focused on him. And remember, they haven't done the preliminary hearing yet.
GRACE: You know what? That's a darned good point. Because everything we're getting now could be misinformation.
GERAGOS: That's absolutely true.
GERAGOS: Because remember, they are...
GRACE: Mark, I'm hearing in my ear. We've got to go. I hate to cut you off. You know that.
GERAGOS: Yes, I know.
GRACE: But I do want to put these numbers up. If you know anything, if you think you know anything, (800) 932-0190, (801) 799- 3000. Elizabeth, where are you?
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