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CNN Larry King Live
Warren Jeffs Nabbed Near Las Vegas
Aired August 29, 2006 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARY LACY, BOULDER COUNTY D.A.: I received a telephone call from a gentleman in Longmont. He said, "You should be tarred and feathered and run out of town."
LARRY KING, CNN HOST: Tonight, after the stunning collapse of the case against John Mark Karr, will we ever find out who killed JonBenet Ramsey? What must her father be thinking after losing his wife two months ago and now this?
And then, fugitive polygamist Warren Jeffs on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List since May finally captured. FBI agents take you inside last night's arrest; and, exclusive the former child bride who is responsible for the federal case against him all next on LARRY KING LIVE.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: I guess you could call it a fiasco. The fiasco is finally over. Before we meet our guests, let's go to a portion of the statement made today by D.A. Mary Lacy in Boulder. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LACY: I think that we felt that we -- we could not ignore this. We had to follow it. We also had the -- an issue that we haven't talked about is that there was a real public safety concern here directed at a particular child and a person who was expressing feelings toward that child, the same as the feelings he felt toward the dead child. And, I have to tell you that was a huge factor in what -- how this occurred in this particular case.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're saying you would do it all again the same way.
LACY: I believe we would.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: In a little while we'll talk with Charlie Brennan, reporter of the Rocky Mountain News, a frequent contributor to this program.
But we start with Larry Garrison, author of a soon to be published book, "The News Breaker," and he's a spokesman for the Karr family. How did you get to be the spokesman? LARRY GARRISON, KARR FAMILY SPOKESPERSON: Well, I saw the spin that was going on, Larry, and I figured it had to stop. And I called the family and spoke to them and they asked me if I would come onboard and help them.
KING: Who in the family?
GARRISON: Nate Karr, the dad, and the brother Michael.
KING: What do you mean by you saw -- what spin?
GARRISON: Well, the family themselves have become victims through all of this.
KING: The Karr family.
GARRISON: The Karr family and there were shows that were just blowing things out of proportion. And, I like as a journalist, and I'd like to believe I'm a journalist first, to tell the truth. And, bottom line was I got on the phone with them and we talked about what was upsetting them and they asked me to come onboard and...
KING: What upset them the most the thought that the media was convicting their relative?
GARRISON: Most definitely. He was being not only convicted but the inferences that were coming out that weren't totally truthful.
GARRISON: Well, especially for them, I became part of the spin. The best example I could give was -- is that I'm an executive producer in film and TV, therefore they are doing a movie and a book. There is no movie and book. This is...
KING: But people reported that?
GARRISON: People reported that.
KING: Did that surprise you, this whole thing? It shouldn't have surprised you.
GARRISON: It doesn't surprise me at all but somewhere along the line there are true journalists out there, like you, that likes to report it the way it is and it was time to step in and try.
KING: The D.A. said that Mr. Karr inserted himself into this. Mr. Karr confessed; can't deny that.
GARRISON: Can't deny that at all.
KING: I mean he's a participant in this.
GARRISON: Right, most definitely but they had no evidence at all to substantiate it.
KING: They got the confession.
GARRISON: A confession.
GARRISON: Most definitely. I wasn't there to judge Karr in any way. I was there because the family loved their brother and son and they're compassionate people and they convinced me that no way could they have -- that he could have been there.
One very important fact that I don't know if people know out there, I know that it was said that one of the brothers might have brought him to the Ramsey party. They never knew the Ramseys. They never went to a party. And that was the spin that was going on.
KING: What was incredible was how would he have known about JonBenet Ramsey before she became -- before she became famous how would he have known to even go kill her?
GARRISON: Most definitely unless somehow, some way...
KING: He went to one of these contests she entered.
GARRISON: And saw and had a fascination with her.
KING: How is the family doing?
GARRISON: The family is doing very, very well and they asked me, I just spoke to them a while ago, they asked me to thank all the journalists that gave them the opportunity to be able to express their views. They're very pleased with the outcome but were not surprised.
KING: Are they going to come forth?
GARRISON: They will be coming forth, yes.
KING: Are they going to go to Los Angeles with John? When is he going to be taken tomorrow I guess?
GARRISON: He's supposed to be extradited I don't know what day. I know that today the judge ordered the extradition. I don't know if and when they're coming out here. All I know is I will be working with them and I will try and keep the record straight.
KING: And there is no book or movie deal?
GARRISON: There is no book or movie deal.
KING: Have you met John Karr?
GARRISON: No, I have not.
KING: Do you expect to?
GARRISON: I hope to.
KING: Thanks, Larry.
GARRISON: Thank you, Larry.
KING: Larry Garrison, Karr family spokesperson, the soon to be published book is "The News Breaker" from Thomas Norton. It will be out early fall.
We'll be right back with more guests as we put this one away for a while and then turn to another big one that happened today. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LACY: We had probable cause to arrest him based on our having tested other statements within the e-mails and the telephone calls, which is typically how we test credibility on someone. Are they prone to lying about other things in their lives, because if they're lying about other things, they're probably lying about this too.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE.
Joining us from Hamilton, Alabama, Steve and Cindy Jackson, they were friends with John Mark Karr and his second wife Lara. Steve, how did you get to know them?
STEVE JACKSON, FRIEND OF JOHN MARK KARR: We met in the early '90s. Cindy and I were married in '89. I think John and Lara were married in '89. So, sort of met them in a supermarket and struck up a friendship.
KING: Cindy, did you double date with them?
CINDY JACKSON, FRIEND OF JOHN MARK KARR: Oh, no. No, we met after they had been married about a year and Steve and I had actually been married about a year.
KING: I mean did you ever go out together?
C. JACKSON: Oh, we did. We went to -- I'm sorry. Larry, we went to each other's house and we didn't have a lot of money because we were in nursing school, Steve and I were, and John and Lara didn't have a big income. So, we just went to each other's house.
KING: What, Steve, were your impressions of John?
S. JACKSON: I guess you could say he was a -- I wouldn't say a little odd but different, just his mannerism. He drove a DeLorean so not everybody, you know, can drive one of those.
KING: You're not kidding. Cindy was Lara -- what were your impressions of her? Was she -- did she seem happy? C. JACKSON: Lara was very quiet. She just -- she was one of the sweetest people. She, I mean she was always very nice to me, just she didn't talk a lot.
KING: When all of this broke, Steve, were you totally shocked?
S. JACKSON: I was totally shocked. The last time we had seen John and Lara was in the early '90s and, you know, the last time I seen John, you know, none of this behavior I could ever thought would happen.
KING: Cindy, you also said that John once told you something like "Deep down, everybody is gay." Did he explain that?
C. JACKSON: Well, Larry, John and Lara used to come by our house and sometimes I'd go riding around with them at night. And so one night we were out riding around and he felt comfortable talking to me. John and I talked more because Lara was kind of quiet.
And so, he just I guess felt comfortable asking me that question. And he was just like, one night it was like "Cindy, you know, everyone" -- or he said, "Cindy, you know everyone deep down inside are gay," you know, and I was like, "You know, well not me, John."
And he said, he was like, "Oh, you know, he was trying to get me to admit it." And he said, "Oh, come on Cindy you know they are. You know, everyone has tendencies to be with the same sex."
KING: Frankly, Steve, did you like him?
S. JACKSON: Yes, I guess I did.
KING: Did you like him, Cindy?
C. JACKSON: I did. He was always real respectful to me and to our children and I liked him.
KING: So when he was accused of this did you believe it, Steve, or do you feel -- are you glad that he didn't do it?
S. JACKSON: Larry, I'm glad he didn't do it. I was surprised. I didn't think he did it and he had made a statement to a friend of mine that someday he would be famous. And when all of this came about I thought of that comment he had made.
KING: Are you going to try to contact him, Cindy?
C. JACKSON: I have no plans but I will pray for him.
KING: What about you, Steve, would you contact him?
S. JACKSON: I can't say that I would, Larry. I don't know -- I don't know if he would try to contact us or not.
KING: Did he ever talk to you, Steve, about crimes?
S. JACKSON: No, Larry, he never talked about any crimes to me.
KING: So, like he didn't discuss any crimes that was in the newspaper or anything of that effect?
S. JACKSON: No, sir, no crime spoken about, you know, when we -- we knew them.
KING: And did Lara ever say to you, Cindy that she was mistreated?
C. JACKSON: No. No, she did not.
KING: Thank you both very much, Steve and Cindy Jackson, friends of John Mark Karr and his second wife Lara, from Hamilton, Alabama. Thank you, guys.
C. JACKSON: Thank you, Larry.
S. JACKSON: You're welcome, thank you, Larry.
KING: When we come back, Charlie Brennan of the Rocky Mountain News; Bob Grant, the former Adams County district attorney; and Dr. Keith Ablow, our forensic psychiatrist. That's all next. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LACY: I want to make it absolutely clear up front the decisions were mine. The responsibility is mine and I should be held accountable for all decisions in this case.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Joining us now in Denver, Colorado is Charlie Brennan, reporter of the Rocky Mountain News and LARRY KING LIVE contributor. He's been covering this from the get-go.
In Boulder is Bob Grant, former Adams County district attorney, was advised by former Boulder County D.A. Alex Hunter.
And, Dr. Keith Ablow joins us in New York, the forensic psychiatrist, best-selling novelist, non-fiction author and host of "The Dr. Keith Ablow Show," which debuts on September 11th.
All right, Charlie what in essence happened at that news conference today?
CHARLIE BRENNAN, ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS: Well, apart from the fire alarm that went off unexpectedly a few minutes in, what I saw was I thought a very impressive showing by Mary Lacy, I should say, in that she -- she spoke to us I thought in a very forthright manner for 90 minutes.
She gave us a lot more of her time and a lot more thorough an accounting of herself than I've seen a lot of public officials who might be in a similarly difficult situation. I give her a lot of credit for that.
KING: What happens to Mr. Karr? Does he go to Los Angeles soon?
BRENNAN: My understanding is he will be picked up by Sonoma County officials here in Boulder within -- I believe September 13th is the date by which they have to come and get him and he will be extradited to California where he will face the five misdemeanor child pornography charges that were leveled against him back in 2001.
KING: Because he jumped bail does that mean he won't get bail?
BRENNAN: I think that he would be starting out in a no bail situation but I would expect that his attorney would make a prompt argument for a setting of bail probably in a range that he might or might not be able to afford.
He's going to be in a completely different situation now and he's not going to be incarcerated for a long time. Either he's -- he'll be a free man before real long but he will be under close supervision I am sure out in California and authorities will have an eye on Mr. Karr for sometime I would imagine.
KING: Bob Grant in Boulder what went wrong?
BOB GRANT, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Well, Larry, the only thing that went wrong was the DNA wasn't his. Mary Lacy had a very tough decision to make and in my view she made a courageous decision.
Most prosecutors wouldn't bring somebody back on a probable cause warrant like that but she had pressures on her because of her concern for the safety of children, because of his mobility, and because of the statements that he made linking him to that crime. She needed that DNA.
KING: On the other hand, Bob, don't a lot of people, not a lot, many people confess to crimes they didn't commit?
GRANT: You're right there are a number, particularly in high profile cases. They -- you know the high profile case leads to obsession and clearly Mark Karr is a disturbed individual who has an obsession with this case. That's what I think led him to those statements that are bizarre at best and indicate a really, really deranged person at worst.
KING: Dr. Keith Ablow, you were skeptical through all of this. What bore you out do you think?
DR. KEITH ABLOW, FORENSIC PSYCHIATRIST: Well, I think that what you have here is somebody who looked like someone you'd want to ask some very basic mental status questions to from the beginning.
Remember how sedated he looked at the news conference. And I think I mentioned early on in the case, you know, they ought to ask him "When's the last time you spoke to JonBenet?" And if you look at the audio cassettes and the transcripts now you see that he may still believe that he's in touch with her.
So, I think that part of what happened here is that portions perhaps of the audio cassettes and the e-mails looked so concerning but they are surrounded by other material that's clearly delusional or contrived and false.
I mean this is somebody who says that he has a playful spirit around his bedroom as well, Polly Klaas, who plays tricks on him. And there's so much material that's clearly false that it makes everything in the transcripts suspect, even whether he is, in fact, attracted to children. That's within the same material.
KING: And frankly then did the D.A. overstep?
ABLOW: Well, frankly, the D.A., you know, I can't say whether her action was inappropriate. I'm not a D.A. What I can say is that if a forensic psychiatrist looked at that material, if I had, I would have said, "Boy, you can't rely on any of this because it's all contaminated by the material around it."
And especially I'd like to direct attention to John Karr's statement in that material that he believed, this is his lead theory as far as I can tell by looking at so much of the material that he believes, not me, that Patsy Ramsey was responsible for this murder.
And I think there's tremendous symmetry in his wish to forgive his mother, who reportedly tried to take his life and who reportedly sexually abused him. He seems to transfer that to Patsy Ramsey and say that she should know that her daughter has forgiven her as I have my mother and mothers are nearly perfect. In fact, Patsy was perfect.
KING: Bob Grant, is this a dead deal?
GRANT: As far as John Mark Karr is, it's a dead deal until and unless somebody else is put...
KING: No, as far as solving it?
GRANT: Oh, no, no, no. I'm sure that they'll continue to look. You still have the 600-pound gorilla sitting in the corner. That's the DNA. If that DNA is matched to somebody in an other than innocent way that somebody is involved in the death of JonBenet Ramsey and they're not going to stop looking for that somebody.
KING: Charlie Brennan, Bill Maher pointed out something last night he thought was not asked. How did he know about JonBenet Ramsey? How did he know to go to Colorado to kill her? She wasn't famous.
BRENNAN: She wasn't famous at the time that she was killed, Larry, but she's famous now and...
KING: Yes, but how did he know to go kill her? He may have said he killed her but before that how did he know to go there?
BRENNAN: How did John Mark Karr know to go there? KING: Yes.
BRENNAN: Well, there's no evidence that he ever went there. One thing that was revealed in today's press conference is they have accounted for him up to December 23rd of '96 and after January 2nd of '97. But they don't know that he ever went to Boulder, Colorado. In fact, they have found absolutely no evidence that he was ever in Boulder.
KING: Dr. Ablow, what I'm trying to say is how would he have known about JonBenet Ramsey until she became famous? How would he have known about her December 24th, ten years ago?
ABLOW: Prior to that?
ABLOW: I think that's an excellent question whether he had, you know, come upon information about her in a beauty pageant or this or that. I don't think we have the answer to that question. I think that's a very good question.
KING: Yes, so he's boasting about something apparently that happened that he transfixed himself into being there, right?
ABLOW: Well, I think that what you have is you have a man who I think Nate's assessment of him may be right that without his family, with the charges of child pornography looming against him, it's the final straw. And, by the way, he's somebody for whom his own life story, this is a classic psychotherapeutic tale.
When people aren't willing to accept the pain in their own lives, if he's not willing to look at the fact that his mother wasn't a near perfect mother, according to him she tried to kill him, until he's willing to say "I was victimized, "She attacked me sexually" as he said, "She was no angel," he's going to find that he's drawn to other dramas because he can't go to his own. It's too painful.
That's what happens to people. That's why people become psychotic and hear voices because they don't want to address the core pain in their lives and they project it. They hear voices from beyond. Or, they insinuate themselves in dramas that are not theirs.
KING: Charlie, because of this do you think any other leads that show up in any other matters, everyone is going to be hesitant?
BRENNAN: Well that's an obvious -- that's obvious fallout from this situation. For years there's been debates between family member intruder, family member intruder. Here we have the first intruder suspect actually arrested and brought back to Boulder and he washes out as a suspect.
The next intruder suspect who is brought to the forefront, if there is one, is going to be met with a tremendous wave of public skepticism and I see that as a real problem in terms of public perception of any further prosecutions in this case. KING: Bob Grant, this is going to be long and tedious to find that match isn't it?
GRANT: Certainly it is. We have an ever expanding DNA database. All felons in this state and in most states have to contribute to that DNA database. There is a very real potential that that database may contain an intruder killer if, in fact, the killer was an intruder. So, they're going to keep looking.
KING: Thank you all very much, Charlie Brennan, Bob Grant, and Dr. Keith Ablow.
We'll put our own wrap on this tomorrow night when Michael Tracey returns to LARRY KING LIVE, the man who started all of this, the journalism professor, who exchanged the e-mails; and Lin Wood, the attorney for the Ramseys. That's tomorrow night.
Right back as we look at the arrest of a polygamist right after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVEN MARTINEZ, FBI SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE: I'd like to announce the arrest of FBI Top Ten Most Wanted fugitive Warren Steed Jeffs. Last evening at approximately 9:04 p.m. a Nevada Highway Patrol trooper pulled over a 2007 red Cadillac Escalade.
Upon questioning one of the occupants of the vehicle it became apparent to the trooper that this individual possessed a likeness to FBI's Top Ten Most Wanted fugitive Warren Steed Jeffs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Welcome back. Warren Steed Jeffs, the fugitive leader of a polygamist religious leader is cooling his heels in a Nevada jail tonight. The woman responsible for the federal charges against Jeffs is standing by in St. George, Utah. She'll talk about Warren Jeffs and the marriage he tried to force her into when she was just 16.
But first we go to CNN correspondent Ted Rowlands, just outside the Las Vegas jail where Jeffs is currently cooling his heels tonight. Ted will tell us about the routine traffic stop that turned into the arrest of one of the FBI's ten most wanted. What happened?
TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, a trooper by the name of Eddie Dutchover made a routine traffic stop just north of Las Vegas. He pulled over a Cadillac Escalade. In the back seat was Warren Jeffs. In the front was his brother. And in the way back, in the third row, was one of his wives, Naomi Jeffs. And the trooper says he pulled the car over because it didn't have any plates on it.
But right away he claims that he noticed that both brothers were extremely nervous. He ended up separating the two brothers. One said they were headed to Utah. Warren Jeffs said they were going to Denver, Colorado. At that point he called in reinforcements. They started to search the car. He said at one point Warren Jeffs was in the back seat refusing to talk, eating a salad. But he looked at him and the vein in his neck was pulsating so quickly that he knew the guy was very, very nervous.
He asked him if he needed any help. He wouldn't respond to him. When they started to search the car, they found three wigs, they found cell phones, about $60,000 in cash in the lining of a suitcase. And then they called the FBI, they started to figure out this could be Jeffs when they saw some letters addressed to the prophet Warren Jeffs. They got an initial I.D.
When the FBI came, Jeffs stopped lying. Initially he gave the wrong name, or at least his brother gave them the wrong name. At that point Jeffs gave his name, said it in full, and then according to this state trooper just sort of sighed and put his head down and the jig was up.
They've been searching for him in earnest for the last four or five months, he was put on the FBI's top ten most wanted list earlier this year and the search came to an end last night, Monday, about 9:00. Tonight he's here in the Clark County Detention Center. He will have his first court appearance Thursday morning and be extradited either to Arizona or Utah.
KING: Thanks, Ted -- Ted Rowlands on top of the scene. He'll remain there as this story continues. Now joining us in St. George, Utah is Ruth Stubbs the corroborating witness against Warren Jeffs. How do you feel about this capture?
RUTH STUBBS, WAS WED BY JEFFS TO 32-YEAR-OLD MAN: I think it's wonderful. I'm very happy that you guys -- that everyone finally helped catch him.
KING: Did you think he'd stay out a lot longer?
STUBBS: I thought he would, but I didn't know for sure. I mean, it takes everybody to catch a criminal.
KING: You may have to face him in court. Does that bother you?
STUBBS: No, it doesn't. I don't know. I kind of feel at peace about it, so.
KING: Any surprise at how willingly, apparently he just gave up to the police?
STUBBS: No. I didn't think that there was going to be any guns or shooting or anything like that. I think when he realized he was caught that he said OK, here I am.
KING: How did you come, Ruth, to be chosen to marry a man?
STUBBS: I was asking for another man and they gave me to Rodney Holm.
KING: What do you mean you were asking for another one? How old were you?
STUBBS: I was 16.
KING: And you were already with a man?
STUBBS: I was dating him for awhile, and we wanted to take the next step. So we wanted to get married. He wasn't married to anybody else at the time. He just wanted me.
KING: What was he like?
STUBBS: The other man?
KING: No, Warren.
STUBBS: Oh, he was -- Warren? He was -- he was definitely in control. His father had a stroke. And he wasn't all the way there all the time so he took total control.
KING: You grew up in this -- they call it the fundamentalist LDS church. You don't consider it LDS, though, do you?
STUBBS: No. They call it the FLDS because they're a break off. They claim that the LDS used to live polygamy and then when they quit then they went in hiding and so they call it the fundamentalist now.
KING: How'd you break away?
STUBBS: I ran with my three kids -- well, two kids at the time. And I was pregnant with my third. And I ran to -- my mom helped me drive to Phoenix, to my sister Penny's house.
KING: How are you doing now?
STUBBS: I'm doing really good now.
KING: Do you live in St. George.
STUBBS: I live in Hurricane. It's about 15 miles from St. George.
KING: Are you married?
STUBBS: No, but I have a really good boyfriend.
KING: And just one boyfriend per person, right?
STUBBS: That's right. One boyfriend, one girlfriend per person.
KING: Thanks, Ruth -- Ruth Stubbs. She is -- at age 16 was forced to wed the 32-year-old Rodney Holm. Jeffs performed the ceremony. Holm was convicted of felony bigamy, unlawful sexual pursuit with a minor. Ruth Stubbs will testify if needed against Mr. Jeffs, arrested today. When we come back, John Lewis and Steven Martinez of the FBI. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What will the Lord do to an immoral people? They shall be destroyed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is part of a lecture Warren Jeffs gave to a group of young girls in a home economics class.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We live in such a wicked day. The people on this land of America are an adulterous generation. We do not want to be like them. The prophets have declared, I would rather have my sons or daughters in the grave than commit sins of immorality.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Joining us now in Phoenix, (r)MD+IN¯(r)MDNM¯Arizona is John W. Lewis, FBI special agent in charge. The Phoenix office initiated a fugitive investigation of Warren Jeffs in June of last year. And in Las Vegas is Steve Martinez, special agent in charge FBI in Las Vegas. He spoke at a press conference today in Salt Lake. Steve, how did this come about?
STEVE MARTINEZ, FBI AGENT IN CHARGE, LAS VEGAS: Well, the Nevada highway patrol did a routine traffic stop last night at about 9:00, had a Cadillac Escalade that had a temporary tag that just didn't look right. The trooper, Mr. Dutchover pulled over the vehicle and basically did his job and did it very, very well.
KING: What were they suspicious of, Steve?
MARTINEZ: Well I think initially it was a traffic stop based on the fact that the temporary tag on the car just wasn't completely visible, at least that's my understanding. And this is something that the highway patrol does routinely as they patrol the highways here in Nevada.
KING: Now, when the FBI -- when the state called the FBI, you got there right away. Were you one of the people that came over?
MARTINEZ: No, I wasn't. Two members of our violent crime and major offenders squad, two special agents, responded immediately when they were called by the Nevada highway patrol, and they were able to confirm that this was indeed Mr. Jeffs.
KING: And he surrendered easily?
MARTINEZ: Yes, he did. It went without incident, and we're very, very pleased that that was the case. We certainly didn't want any violence, and it was without incident.
KING: John W. Lewis, how did the Phoenix office get involved?
JOHN W. LEWIS, FBI AGENT IN CHARGE, PHOENIX: Larry, shortly after Mojave County filed their warrants, we became involved, interacting with them. It was last year, mid '05, about June '05 when we after discussing with them decided to go forward with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution warrant. Essentially that's a tool that allows the FBI throughout the nation to join with a local law enforcement agency and use our resource to search for a fugitive.
KING: You said today that they found materials in the car suggesting that he was -- or calling himself a prophet. What kind of materials?
LEWIS: Steve might be better to answer that, Larry. My understanding is there were a considerable number of envelopes in the car that may have had his name or other written information on them.
KING: Was that, Steve, a bizarre scene?
MARTINEZ: Well, I don't know if I'd call it bizarre, but there was quite a bit of material in the vehicle and as the agents were looking through it, there were some interesting articles that did contain information that looked like they were letters of support perhaps to Mr. Jeffs.
KING: Do you know what he was doing in Las Vegas, Steve?
MARTINEZ: You know, I really don't. And it's not certain that he was in Las Vegas or just transmitting through Las Vegas. But the bottom line is that's where he wound up and it was just a little bit north of the city limits.
KING: From what you know of him, John W. Lewis, a red Escalade? Does that surprise you?
LEWIS: No, not at all, Larry. We've had several reports over the time we've been interested in finding Mr. Jeffs that he travels in cars just like that and other SUVs, in fact.
KING: What made this so tough a chase?
LEWIS: Well, it's a very large country. There's quite a few people in it. If somebody wants to stay hidden particularly when they're protected by a large group of people with whom they associate with regularly, it makes our job a little more difficult. That's why we involve America's Most Wanted. That's why we involve top ten fugitive publicity. That's why the local authorities in this case came to the FBI to take advantage of our 56 field office reach, if you will, throughout the United States.
KING: Steve, he's on the top ten. Is he dangerous?
MARTINEZ: Well, I think the nature of the charges would indicate that he does present a danger to children, and for that reason he did wind up on the list as a top ten fugitive.
KING: Are you going to be -- do you think you'll be hurt by the fact that so many people apparently like and support him, Steve?
MARTINEZ: Well, you know, I really don't want to speculate as to how that might impact on it. I know that he has a right to mount a defense to the charges that have been brought against him. But I do think that the cases will be strong in both jurisdictions, in Utah and in Arizona.
KING: Did he say anything, Steve, to the officers?
MARTINEZ: Aside from finally admitting his identity, he really didn't. There was an attempt to interview him on substantive matters. But he chose not to speak to those matters.
KING: What happens to him now, John?
LEWIS: Well, today there was a hearing over in Las Vegas. And again, Steve might comment on this. I know it was a state hearing. That hearing is in regards to if and when he's going to be removed over here to the state of Arizona or possibly to the state of Utah where there are charges. We have still two federal warrants that have yet to be exercised. At some point the federal authorities are going to have to deal with those as well.
KING: Where does he go, Steve?
MARTINEZ: Well, he'll remain here at the Clark County detention facility until the legal process is such that he would be extradited to either Utah or Arizona. So for the time being he'll be here.
KING: Thank you both very much. Noble work. John W. Lewis, FBI special agent in charge Phoenix. Steve Martinez, FBI special agent in charge Las Vegas. Anderson Cooper will join us at the top of the hour to bring "360" to our attention. Anderson, what's up tonight?
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Larry, we're of course live from New Orleans on Katrina's anniversary. It has been a day for people here to remember. A difficult day indeed, remembering the storm and also to never forget the failures that cost so many so much. We're keeping them honest.
Tonight we'll look at why one year on there is still no one single plan from the top down to rebuild. It is simply mind-boggling. We're also following the story that you are covering right now, the capture of fugitive polygamist leader Warren Jeffs. We're going to take you inside his fundamentalist sect, show you what they practice, how they practice, and how he's been getting away with this for so many years. We have reports from several of the polygamist compounds scattered throughout the United States. That, Larry, all at the top of the hour.
KING: Thanks, Anderson. Anderson Cooper in New Orleans on this historic day. That's "ANDERSON COOPER 360" at the top of the hour and we'll be right back. Don't go away.
KING: On this day after the capture of Warren Jeffs joining us in Salt Lake City is Greg Hoole, the attorney for Brent Jeffs, the nephew of Warren Jeffs. Brent has filed suit against his uncle, accusing him of sexually abusing him. And in Mesa, Arizona is Pennie Peterson. She fled her family and the FLDS at age 14 after learning she was about to be forced into a polygamous marriage. Her father had multiple wives, and she has 38 brothers and sisters, including Ruth Stubbs. Ruth will be back with us in the last segment. Greg, what's the suit all about?
GREG HOOLE, ATTORNEY FOR BRENT JEFFS: Brent's suit is about allegations that Warren Jeffs while principal at the Alta Academy (ph) sexually molested Brent when he was approximately five or six-years- old and a student at the academy. The offenses actually occurred on Sunday. The school building was also used as a church. And families who were -- the Jeffs family in particular was sent down and divided from the others. And the children were put in a room where Warren would eventually come down and take Brent by the hand, lead him to a bathroom down the hall and sexually molest him.
KING: Is Brent the son of Warren's brother or sister?
HOOLE: He is. He's Warren's nephew. The son of Warren's brother from a different mother, but nonetheless Warren's nephew.
KING: So when Warren Jeffs preaches morality, even if he may deem polygamy as moral, the rest of it is baloney, right?
HOOLE: That's exactly right. In fact, Brent's case and the lost boys case, another group of young men that we represent against Warren Jeffs and the FLDS church has nothing to do with polygamy. It has to do with a fanatical religious leader who's abusing children and destroying families.
KING: Pennie, do you know Warren?
PENNIE PETERSEN, FLED FDLS: I don't know him personally, no.
KING: But you lived in a polygamous setting until -- you ran away at 14, right?
PETERSEN: Yes, I did. I know of Warren. I know that, you know, he's married off my sister and different things that he's done. And I think it's ironic that he's driving around a red Cadillac when red is against our religion.
KING: Red is against your religion?
PETERSEN: Against their religion, yes. You're not supposed to wear red or have red vehicles. And it's pretty funny that he's driving a Cadillac that's red.
KING: How did you get away?
PETERSEN: I ran away at the age of 14 in the middle of the night. I was to be married off the next morning to not a very good man.
KING: You grew up in that polygamous setting, though. What was it like for a young kid kid? PETERSEN: Well, there's always the need for more food and new shoes and clothes and never enough. A lack of attention. A lot of sexual abuse.
KING: Did you have services every Sunday?
PETERSEN: Yes. Every Sunday and on Wednesdays there's home evening. So you have services quite often.
KING: Did you feel you were a Mormon?
PETERSEN: Pardon me?
KING: Did you feel you were a Mormon?
PETERSEN: Did I feel I was a Mormon? No. I felt that I was -- no. Because the Mormons, the polygamists don't like the Mormons. They think that the Mormons gave in to the state. So we actually were taught to hate the Mormons because they didn't hold up to the agreement of God.
KING: Are you now a Mormon?
PETERSEN: No, I am not.
KING: We'll take a break. Greg Hoole will return. So will Pennie Petersen. So will her sister, Ruth Stubbs. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In Colorado City, Arizona the American flag flies. But most of the citizens pledge allegiance to Warren Jeffs.
(on camera): What do you think of the man?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he's awesome.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): In this town of about 9,000 where Warren Jeffs lived in this house before he went underground, some coaxing did result in some comments.
(on camera): What do you think of him?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's a great prophet. And you're damn fools for bothering him. Because your ass is going to get hung one of these days when you look up from hell and look at him in the face.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Greg Hoole remains with us from Salt Lake City. Pennie Petersen is in Mesa, Arizona. And returning is Ruth Stubbs, in St. George, Utah. Her husband, who Mr. Jeffs married -- married her and her husband, was convicted of felony bigamy. Do you ever get to see him at all, Ruth?
STUBBS: He chooses not to come around very often. Since his trial in Kingman is coming up, he's been stopping by and seeing the kids, probably seen them about five times in the last two months.
KING: Is it hard for you to be around him?
STUBBS: Probably the last time he stopped by was a month. And no, I just -- I'm a smartaleck like I was before I married him, and it kind of shocks him because he thought he got all that out of me.
KING: Well, your sister, Pennie, is here. Is she a smartalec, Pennie?
PETERSEN: Yes, she is. And she's awesome. She's a strong girl. I'm very proud of her.
KING: Greg, what do you make of Mr. Jeffs?
HOOLE: Well, we're glad that he's captured and not just that he's captured, but that he was captured without the loss of any life our clients feared from the beginning that bringing him to justice could result in the loss of life, loss of innocent life, and he's not worth the loss of anyone's life.
We worried that if credible information revealed that he was holed up in the Texas compound, for example, what would authorities do? Would they call out the tanks?
So we're just very grateful that he was brought to justice in the way that he did. And we credit law enforcement in Mojave County, Matt Smith and Brock Bellnapp (ph) up in Washington County and Gary Engals (ph) and the other members of law enforcement and the FBI who were able to build a case against him and bring him to justice.
KING: With what we learned tonight about the color red, does that make him in your opinion, Greg, a phony?
HOOLE: Warren always says one thing and does another. For example, previously he's told people to answer them nothing with regard to where he is, and that sort of thing. It will be interesting to see now that he's captured whether he has a new prophecy, a new revelation where he's supposed to talk and defend himself.
Up until now, he's let other people take the fall for him. And this wouldn't be the first time where he said one thing and done another.
KING: Pennie, can he get a fair trial in Utah?
PETERSEN: I don't know. I don't think we got a fair trial with Rodney's case. I think Rodney should have got a lot more than he did.
I hope we can. I hope this -- I don't know. It's hard for me to say yes after what happened with Rodney. He got a year nights for sleeping with a 16-year-old girl. So what's fair?
KING: What about in Arizona?
PETERSEN: Arizona we just had a guy convicted and he got four months. So -- or 40 days.
So I don't know. It's hard for me to say. It's almost like they're saying it's okay to sleep with underage girls, you know. I don't know. I plead with the judges that they do the right thing on this. And I want him to get the maximum. He deserves the maximum.
KING: Ruth, do you think there's a lot of hidden support for him?
STUBBS: What do you mean by hidden?
KING: I mean there's a lot of people who may say one thing but deep down kind of like him or support him or still support polygamy.
STUBBS: Yes, there is. That community's never going to break. They're going to live it forever, because that's what they've been taught forever.
I thank you all very much. Greg Hoole, the attorney for Brent Jeffs, the nephew of Warren Jeffs, he is filing suit against his uncle, accusing him of sexual abuse.
Pennie Petersen who fled the FLDS at age 14, and Ruth Stubbs, a cooperating witness against Warren Jeffs. Warren Jeffs married her and her husband. Her husband convicted of felony bigamy.
Before we go, Senator John McCain turns 70 today. We wish a happy birthday to a remarkable man, a war hero a once and maybe future presidential candidate and a great friend to this program. Best wishes, senator John McCain.
Tomorrow night, we put our wraps on JonBenet Ramsey matter -- for awhile at least. Michael Tracey, the professor of journalism returns to discuss the e-mails that he had with the former suspect.
And Lin Wood, the famed attorney for the Ramseys.
Right now, to New Orleans, Anderson Cooper and "AC 360." -- Anderson.
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