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Nancy Grace

Duke University`s Lacrosse Team Coach Resigns in the Wake of Gang Rape Allegations Against Three of his Team Members

Aired April 05, 2006 - 20:00   ET


NANCY GRACE, HOST: Tonight, breaking news out of Durham, North Carolina. A Duke University athletic coach resigns just hours ago. And on alert tonight not just the student body but an entire country, anticipating DNA results en route at this moment on Duke University`s lacrosse team, an elite university, considered the cream of the crop, the best students, the highest IQs, top scores, huge money endowments, to the tune of millions now at risk. And it all boils down to this: What happened March 13 when a local university student when to a Duke off-campus university party, turning up hours later in a Kroeger (ph) parking lot looking beaten and dazed, claiming multiple rape at the hands of those same elite students.
Also tonight, high-ranking official on America`s homeland security team in D.C. arrested for allegedly trying to lure who he thought to be a 14-year-old girl.

Good evening, everybody. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us tonight. Tonight: He is in contempt! Brian Doyle, Homeland Security deputy press secretary arrested in his Maryland home on charges he is a child sex predator. Was he stopped in time? What will be his defense?

But first tonight, the prestigious Duke University, number five in national rankings, tonight under the microscope for gang rape allegations against its most elite athletic group, the Duke lacrosse team. DNA test results pending at this moment will make or break not only the team but the state`s case. Did members of the lacrosse team beat, choke and rape a student turned stripper, refusing to allow her to leave? Tonight, we are taking your calls.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody`s holding their breath, based on this DNA evidence. And we want to know whether they match anybody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They went down, didn`t contest whether it was an unconstitutional request for their DNA, went in and gave it voluntarily, without trying to get a judge to stop it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We either want to see the players exonerated or we want to see them charged.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are false accusations made every day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They haven`t been convicted, but 30-something kids are remaining silent.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If, in fact, the DNA shows that none of these young men sexually assaulted this young woman making these accusations, that`s a pretty powerful point these young men are telling the truth.


GRACE: Tonight, we are live at Duke University. Let`s go to the reporter with WPTF radio, joining us tonight, Kevin Miller. Kevin, lacrosse coach Mike Pressler announces he is resigning. Why? And what good will it do?

KEVIN MILLER, WPTF RADIO: Well, Nancy, it`s long overdue. You look at Duke University -- Richard Brodhead later on this evening will make a statement on television that has been embargoed. It hasn`t been released to the media yet, but he will make a statement concerning this. Richard Brodhead did make a statement after -- in light of what happened to Mike Pressler, that this is unfortunate. It does raise the...

GRACE: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa! Kevin, what`s unfortunate, that he resigned or that a girl possibly got gang raped?

MILLER: Well, yes, that you have these allegations against the Duke lacrosse team, Nancy, that -- and again, it`s been three weeks, and they haven`t been charged. And you have the idea that the lacrosse coach was on the air on Friday, the day before the first game was canceled, seemingly out of touch. And then you have all these other allegations and these other charges. Really, it`s a bad sign for the university.

And again, you look at the university, and they`re trying to clamp down, saying, Look, the lacrosse season is over. The lacrosse team had been practicing, Nancy. I don`t expect them to do that anymore, just because it showed that things were going on as normal, as you have these very serious charges pending. It`s been over three weeks. No charges have been filed yet, Nancy.

GRACE: To Kevin Miller, what can you tell me about allegations that a member of the lacrosse team had a prior arrest, possibly a conviction? We`re trying to confirm that, about a beating near the Georgetown University.

MILLER: Right. You`re talking about -- according to published reports, one of the members of the Duke lacrosse team, according to published reports, did punch a young man. It was simple assault. He has entered a diversionary program, a diversion program, and after completing 25 hours of community service, that simple assault will be taken off his record.

GRACE: Kevin, what were the facts surrounding the simple assault?

MILLER: Well, according to the documentation that I have, apparently, what happened was the victim was punched, punched in the body, and according to published reports, not racial but sexual behavior slurs were used. The victim was called gay.

GRACE: So we`ve got slurs, a physical attack. He entered a diversionary program. Very quickly, Alan Ripka, just tell the viewers what a diversionary program is.

ALAN RIPKA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, what happens, Nancy, when someone gets in trouble, they can go into a program to help them with their anger management, sexual problems, things aggressive in nature. And that sort of gets them off the hook as sort of a punishment.

GRACE: Alan?


GRACE: Let`s just get real, OK? You know what a diversionary program is. It`s for a rich kid with good grades who does a bad thing, and they don`t want to send them to jail because jail is bad. So they get a diversionary program. And then they pop up on the Duke lacrosse team. That`s the truth, isn`t it, Alan Ripka!

RIPKA: Well, Nancy, come on. Your first offense, you make a mistake. What do you want...

GRACE: No, no, no, no, no! Please answer yes, no.


GRACE: You punch a guy and you use slurs on the guy? Maybe a little jail time in order?

RIPKA: Well, you know, I don`t think jail time is in order for someone who gets into a fight and has a verbal confrontation with someone, Nancy.

GRACE: A fight? OK. People don`t get convicted for having a fight. I`ve had about 10 today already, and you see, I`m not in a diversion program, Alan Ripka. But thank you for stepping up to the plate as a defense lawyer. You are right, diversionary program is an alternative to jail when the prosecution doesn`t think jail is fit.

Back to Kevin Miller, WPTF radio. So what are they doing about this guy on the lacrosse team that has, allegedly, a record for attacking someone and using slurs on the person?

MILLER: Nancy, according to what we know -- which is, again, through investigations and published reports, the lacrosse coach, Mike Pressler was aware of that, did his own investigation and was satisfied with what was going on.

GRACE: His own investigation?


GRACE: Well, what would that be?

MILLER: Apparently, whatever he found out, he was fine with this member and what happened.

GRACE: Now it`s all starting to fit together, why the lacrosse coach has stepped down! Was there a big wrangling? Was it an argument? Was he pressured into resigning? And what did he hope to achieve? Breaking news tonight, everyone. The Duke lacrosse coach stepping down. So what`s the real story, Kevin?

MILLER: Nancy, I think this was long overdue. You have, again, day after day, these announcements coming out. Now we have the search warrant that was unsealed later this afternoon that I`m sure you`ll get to. But the idea that this team was just out of control, and somebody -- the buck had to stop somewhere. And apparently, it`s with Mike Pressler.

He`d been with the university a long time, very successful coach, and yet it`s long overdue. I`m sure that the university is hearing from prominent alumni, prominent donors, saying, Look, you guys are embarrassing us. Many former lacrosse athletes have been questioned or have been quoted in published reports saying, Look, these guys are embarrassing us. I wore that uniform. I`m not proud of it. You have a lot of people that are very proud of Duke University. As you said, Nancy, it`s great academically. It`s great athletically and morally, and it`s getting a bad name. Something had to be done. You couldn`t just have business as usual. You couldn`t have the players continue to practice, and you couldn`t have the season continue. It had to stop.

GRACE: Hold on, Kevin. Ellie, can you hand me the e-mail he`s talking about? Thank you, dear. Elizabeth, could you put the e-mail up that Kevin is referring to, Kevin Miller? Here is an e-mail from one of the lacrosse players. This was seized by local police. This is about -- less than an hour after this young lady reports being gang raped by Duke lacrosse players.

"I decided to have some strippers over to Edens 2C. All are welcome. However, there will be no nudity. I plan on killing the bitches as soon as they walk in and proceed to cut their skin off while in my Duke-issued spandex." Signed "41."

OK, Kevin Miller, let me guess. Is 41 attached to anybody`s jersey number, by chance?

MILLER: You would be correct. That would be Ryan McFadden (ph).

GRACE: All right. This is within a few minutes, less than about a half an hour, right, Ellie, after the young lady is spotted in the Kroeger parking lot?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right. That`s right.

GRACE: Here is what the district attorney had to say.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t think that you can classify anything about what went on and this as a prank that got out of hand or as a result of some drinking by people who are under age.

The racial slurs that were involved are relevant to show the mindset, I guess, that was that was involved in this particular attack. And obviously, it makes what is already an extremely reprehensible act even represent reprehensible.


GRACE: Tonight, not only the student body but many people across the country, victims` rights advocates, certainly waiting on DNA results. Now, Kevin Miller, the DNA was taken from 46 of the 47 lacrosse members on March 23, correct?

MILLER: Yes, Nancy. And if I could just jump in about this e-mail, I had learned about this through a few contacts within the university, through the Durham Police Department. And again, the reason why we learned about this e-mail is that the search warrant that had been sealed was unsealed this afternoon.

So I don`t know why the DA decided to release it, to unseal it, but that`s why we have this new allegation. It could be because public opinion here was actually moving towards the idea that the DA was doing this for political purposes because he`s running for election. He was appointed...

GRACE: You mean prosecuting this case for political purposes?

MILLER: Well, that`s what some people say.

GRACE: What people? What people are saying that prosecuting an alleged gang rape is politically motivated? Who would say that?

MILLER: Well, Nancy, on radio stations, such as mine, WPTF, and I`ve received a lot of e-mails from being on this show and on the air here locally. A lot of people say, Look, the woman has some questionable background. She has a prior record. She was an exotic dancer. She went back in. She knew what she was looking for. How do we know she`s telling the truth?

And you go back to the whole DNA thing. If the prosecutor has the DNA, you know, why hasn`t he released it? So that`s the mood here locally, Nancy.

GRACE: Kevin, what is her alleged criminal record?

MILLER: Again, it was -- I believe it had nothing to do -- and I have this in my notes, but it wasn`t anything to do with prostitution or sexual crimes, and I really wouldn`t feel comfortable speculating on...

GRACE: Are you even sure she`s got a record?

MILLER: According to published reports, yes.

GRACE: Published reports. So that would not be a GCIC (ph) or an NCIC (ph) actual rap sheet, it`s published reports, right?

MILLER: Yes, Nancy.

GRACE: So here we see it starting, Lauren Howard, the "blame the victim" defense. From my research, this is a Navy enlistee, 27 years old, a divorced mother putting herself through school, student-turned-stripper. So Lauren, blame the victim -- it`s in high gear.

LAUREN HOWARD, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Well, we know that that is what occurs in sex crimes is that the victim gets blamed. That doesn`t mean that the victim is not culpable. We don`t know. It`s been three weeks. No one`s been charged. We don`t have DNA results. But furthermore, how do you prove that even if sex occurred, that it wasn`t consensual? I mean, it is a very difficult thing to prove.

GRACE: OK. I have an idea.

HOWARD: It just is.

GRACE: Let`s go to Dr. Lawrence Kobilinsky, forensic scientist. You`ve worked on plenty of rape cases, as have I. How about bruising about the neck and face? How about vaginal and anal tearing? How about immediate outcry, disheveled appearance? How about her fingernails being ripped off her fingers and still lying on the floor of the bathroom when cops go execute a search warrant? How about leaving behind your pocketbook, your cell phone, your money, everything?

If this had been a, let me say, gentlemen`s agreement, do you think all those conditions would exist, Lawrence Kobilinsky?

LARRY KOBILINSKY, FORENSIC SCIENTIST: That`s a very good question, Nancy, and I`ll tell you, I think you hit it right on the head. DNA is only one piece of evidence, and there are lots of other issues that have to be looked at to solve this problem. But the DNA results will come back. We will know if semen is present on the vaginal and anal swabs. We will know how many contributors there are to the DNA because, remember, we have a victim and we have an allegation of multiple assailants. We may be able to exclude some individuals. We may be able to include some individuals. But it depends on the complexity of the profiles that come back.

GRACE: What did you just say? The complexity of the profiles? Are you...


GRACE: Let`s dummy down for me, OK?


GRACE: Are you saying that because multiple sperms are mixed together, along with the victim`s own DNA, we may not be able to get a clear DNA profile? Is that what you just said?

KOBILINSKY: That is exactly what I just said. When you have one assailant and one victim, you have two profiles to look at, and you can basically examine each.

GRACE: I cannot believe they`re trotting out this girl`s alleged criminal history! I -- I -- OK. Go ahead. Sorry. Go.

KOBILINSKY: No, I think that if there are multiple assailants, it`s just a very complicated issue. There may be different contributions to this DNA from different people and...

GRACE: So is that the hold-up in the DNA, you think, because multiple DNAs are mixed?

KOBILINSKY: No. No, I don`t think that`s the hold-up, and I don`t think there is a hold-up. It takes...

GRACE: March 23. Last I looked, it`s April 5. That`s 18 days!

KOBILINSKY: Nancy, it does take two or three weeks to come back. Now, if...

GRACE: Who told you that?

KOBILINSKY: Now, if you just add up the time...

GRACE: Who told you three weeks on DNA?

KOBILINSKY: Let me just explain. If you add up the time...


GRACE: ... doing the backstroke.

KOBILINSKY: No, no, no. If you add up just the times to do the procedure, it`s a day or so. But when you have to do all the paperwork, the quality control, and when it comes down to it, there`s backlog cases, even if this is a high-profile case, it`s going to take a couple of weeks. So I`m not terribly surprised about the delay.

GRACE: OK. Hold on. To veteran defense attorney Marc Mukasey. So let me guess. At trial, the defense is going to argue she`s a slut, she`s a hooker, she may have a criminal history. My question to you is, Marc, how can a defense attorney with a straight face argue that you think people grow up dreaming as little girls, Gee, I hope I can be a stripper one day?



GRACE: People do this because they have to make a living!

MUKASEY: Nancy...

GRACE: I had to work in a restaurant, mopping floors and making sandwiches. That wasn`t my life`s dream, but I had to make a living!

MUKASEY: OK. Let me bring another defense to the table which nobody has mentioned yet, which has nothing to do with the woman`s prior background or alleged criminal history.

GRACE: OK, hit me.

MUKASEY: How about this, Nancy? DNA means contact. That`s all. Could be consensual. Eyewitness identification, on the other hand, extremely unreliable. She`s identified some of her attackers. Eyewitness identification, the studies show, totally unreliable.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A majority of the team members attended that party, which included underage drinking and the hiring of private party dancers. This conduct was wholly inappropriate to the values of the athletic program and this university, and thus the penalty was imposed, and forfeiting two games we consider to be a substantial penalty for a team that hoped to compete for a national championship.



GRACE: Campus protests, calls for resignations, unrest across the entire Duke University student body. Why? Because a young lady, a student-turned-stripper, claimed she was gang raped by Duke University`s elite lacrosse team.

Let`s go straight to the lines. Michelle, West Virginia. Welcome, Michelle.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Nancy. I think you`re great.

GRACE: Thank you. Thank you for calling in. What`s your question?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. My question is, if the DNA test results come back inconclusive, can the Duke lacrosse players be forced to take a lie-detector test?

GRACE: No, they cannot. A polygraph, lie-detector test, is currently inadmissible in criminal court across this country, unless there is a stipulation in advance by both parties, the district attorney and the defense attorney, that it will be taken and then allowed into court, regardless of the results. However, let me tell you something without dating myself. I`ve tried many a rape case without DNA whatsoever. So believe me, Michelle in West Virginia, it can be done.

Let`s go to Cindy in Arkansas. Hi, Cindy.


GRACE: What`s your question, dear?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Based on all the facts you`ve given tonight, could the coach possibly be charged with aiding and abetting, other than NCAA, you know, infractions?

GRACE: I`m guessing no. What about it, Alan Ripka?

RIPKA: No, Nancy, I don`t think there`s enough evidence linking him to organizing the party, hiring the strippers or even being present.

GRACE: Marc Mukasey, better duck because your suggestion before we went to break that this case could be lost on eyewitness identification, if there`s a DNA result. They don`t need an eyewitness identification, if there`s a DNA result ID.

MUKASEY: Wrong again, Nancy. DNA result means the men were there, they were with the woman. They may have had some sexual contact with the woman. It could be consensual. The eyewitness identification...

GRACE: But you said if she couldn`t identify them -- DNA will identify them better than an eyewitness ever could.

MUKASEY: DNA will only say they were there...


MUKASEY: ... and they may have had some contact with the woman.


MUKASEY: Look, DNA will identify a husband being with a wife. It doesn`t mean you`re guilty.

GRACE: OK, Marc, so you would argue with a straight face to a jury of 12 that she had sex voluntarily, including vaginal and anal sex, with three guys and ended up getting bruised, strangled and having her nails ripped off?

MUKASEY: I would never argue that to a jury. I would argue that consent is a defense, that DNA does not alone convict, and that eyewitness identification unreliable.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are false accusations made every day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re very disturbed that the district attorney has come out to try this case in the news media before all the evidence is in and before any charges have been made.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have not accused anybody of committing this rape. I do believe that a sexual assault occurred.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He does not have all the facts, and yet he is out there saying not just that three of the boys are guilty, but they`re all guilty as aiders and abetters.


GRACE: Welcome back, everybody. Discord on the Duke University campus as we are waiting at this moment for DNA results to come back -- 46 of 47 players submitted to oral swab DNA.

Let`s go to Stephanie in New York. Hi, Stephanie.


GRACE: What`s your question, dear?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Basically, I`m getting a little annoyed. Lacrosse is being skewed as -- you know, the rape as being a product of lacrosse being an upper-class, white, privileged sport. Well, if this rape is a result of lacrosse being a privileged white sport, was Navy`s quarterback rape accusation, University of Tennessee Chattanooga`s gang rape accusation, Sheldon Williams`s (ph) gang rape accusations, Colorado`s football rape accusations -- were those the product of an egotistical (ph) working-class black sport?

GRACE: My goodness, that was a mouthful! And a good point. Lauren Howard, I have not brought the race card into this. Because I`ve handled so many rape cases, I consider them to be able -- with the power to cross racial, socioeconomic bounds. It does it in date rape. There`s so many permutations. What`s your answer?

HOWARD: Well, I mean, that something that definitely comes to mind in this case, and there has been some aftermath since this incident, where there have been some sort of racial attacks. There was one at the drive- through hamburger place down in Durham. So there is a possibility that this is a racial crime, that it is even a racial set-up, if you want to go to the other side. Hard to say. Don`t know.

GRACE: Because they specifically asked for a black stripper?

HOWARD: Well, they did. Allegedly, they did.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is a culture of white and, indeed, violent, drunken privilege. I don`t think this is unknown at Yale. I don`t think this is unknown at Cornell. I don`t think it`s unknown at Duke University.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s the first thing that`s not true. It wasn`t racially motivated. It wasn`t a rape. It wasn`t a gang rape. It wasn`t a rape. It was no sexual assault. And so that is untrue.


GRACE: Then why, sir, were the lady`s fingernails allegedly ripped off her fingers and still lying in the bathroom floor where she says she was gang raped by Duke University lacrosse team members?

Joining us right now, a very special guest, Professor Houston Baker. He is a Duke University professor of English.

Professor, thank you for being with us. Professor Baker wrote a letter to the Duke administration calling for the lacrosse team to be disbanded.

Professor, why?

PROF. HOWARD BAKER, DUKE UNIVERSITY: Well, because the behavior of that has been continuous with this team that a number of faculty members, Nancy, have noted, recorded, taken to the athletic director, taken it to the deans of the university, as behavior that signals an out-of-control unit, predominantly.

I think if you go 46-1 white to black, you`re talking predominantly white team. It`s egregious. It`s against all the standards of ethics, community citizenship that are bandied about by administrators at Duke and many other universities.

And it seems to me that disbanding the team clears a space for us to reconstruct a culture of citizenship, and community, and ethics, and responsibility, and accountability at Duke University and, hopefully, become a national model, Nancy.

GRACE: Professor?


GRACE: I guess I`ve prosecuted so many rape cases and represented so many sex assault victims, white, black, Asian, rich, poor, educated, non- educated, I`ve seen so many lady victims that I think of it as crimes on women. I have not been factoring in the race element to this.

But you`re right; I`m not arguing with you. My question to you is: What`s your response to the coach resigning? And you say that faculty has recorded other lacrosse incidents in the past, such as what?

BAKER: Well, there was a university council meeting, Nancy, a little over a week ago or maybe just a week ago. And at least four faculty members stood up at that meeting.

And one of them, the imminent historian, Peter Wood, internationally renowned, said that he had reported to the deans that these members of the lacrosse team, or the members of the men`s lacrosse team, were people who had urinated on people`s houses, who had used racial slurs, who had disturbed the community of neighborhoods in and around the university, and that he had carried this information to the athletic director.

Another professor stood up and said the members of the men`s lacrosse team had been given special privileges so that they could make up courses in the summer and that they had showed up at these courses drunk and indifferent.

It doesn`t seem to me that a great university that prides itself on academic excellence and a safe space community of citizenship can tolerate such a culture of, in this specific instance, Nancy, lacrosse, all right?

I think the question that was asked out of New York was a good question. I`d like to answer. You know, I can`t out-answer you, Nancy. You`re great. But I`d like to say this is very much a class-inflected event. Otherwise, there would not be 11 lawyers on board. I take it that the alleged victim has one representative, and that would be the district of attorney.

I want you to know, as well, that my family and I were a party to a home invasion in Philadelphia. And, yes, Nancy, I have sat through two years of the prosecution of specifically the multiple rapes of my wife in our house. She`s written a book called "Surviving the Silence: Black Women`s Stories of Rape."

So I`ve got some idea about the discourse of rape, but I can`t talk about what happened in that house. I can talk about what happened outside of it, when there were three -- at least -- black women who were assaulted by words. Words are actions, and there`s testimony to that, albeit eyewitness testimony, but pretty good, since the news has continued to play it and the person who says he heard it has stuck by his story.

Also, there`s a 911 call that`s recorded with the police and in the police archives of Durham. This is an out-of-control unit. It doesn`t have any place on a campus that says it is predominantly interested in academic activity.

GRACE: Professor?

BAKER: Yes, Nancy.

GRACE: I`m very tempted to say I`m sorry for what happened to you, but having been a crime victim and hearing your story, I know there are no words that will make it feel any better.

BAKER: Nancy, thanks for saying something about that. My wife and many, many, many women, black, white, Asian, South Asian, on the campus of Duke University this evening are afraid to walk across campus. No statement by anybody this late in the game, which is three weeks along the way, is going to allay those fears.

GRACE: The only statement that would mean anything at this point, Professor, would be an indictment.

BAKER: I could not agree with you more.

GRACE: Professor, quickly, if it can be done quickly, why was this allowed to fester? I mean, I can`t imagine; I was so happy and felt so lucky to even be going to college.

BAKER: Me, too.

GRACE: I can`t even imagine...

BAKER: ... absolutely.

GRACE: ... somebody showing up to class drunk and not getting thrown out.

BAKER: Exactly. Well, Nancy, let me be clear. I`ve taught in the academy, fortunately, for the last 38 years. When I went to Yale in 1968, there were parties called masters` beer parties. It was an all-male institution.

Women were bused in from Barnard and the seven sisters schools. They were dragged off of buses like cattle. They were doused with beer. They were dragged drunkenly off the floor -- God knows what happened then -- showered and put back on the buses on Sunday.

The University of Pennsylvania had fraternities right down the middle of the campus where we all had to walk. On Friday afternoon, you took your life in your hand and you certainly took your racial and gender dignity in hand if you walked down that locust walk, because it was a violent assault of culture of white males. Yes, white males.

I`ve taught in many places. In tier-one, traditionally all-white universities across this country, administrators know that a culture of violence, a culture of rape, a culture of gay-bashing, a culture of racism and misogyny exist. Duke is no different in that respect.

When this event showed a kind of culmination and intersection of those cultures, people who were responsible in athletics and in the administration building stayed resolutely silent.

GRACE: You know what, though, Professor? Everyone, take a look at Professor Houston Baker. You think it`s helping him to speak out? You think it`s helping him, but, at some point, someone has to speak out.

Right now, joining me, a very special guest, in addition to Professor Baker, Jeannie Adair. Jeannie Adair is the director of training and education with the North Carolina Coalition Against Sex Assault. She teaching nurses how to preserve evidence from rape kits.

Jeannie Adair, I`ve argued to many a-jury that a rape kit examination is no walk in the park; it`s no picnic for the alleged victim. What does a rape kit exam entail?

JEANNIE ADAIR, NORTH CAROLINA COALITION AGAINST SEX ASSAULT: Well, it entails a variety of things. Once a victim presents to the emergency room, best-case scenario is a four-hour procedure. If they`re lucky enough to end up at a hospital that actually has a SANE nurse, which is a sexual assault nurse examiner, who has been trained to conduct the kit, that`s best-case scenario. They actually know the kit inside and out.

Parts of the kit, to give you a little briefing of the kit, basically, the victim has come in. The kit is opened in the room. Once the kit is opened, the person conducting the kit is not allowed to leave the room, trying to secure the chain of custody.

The victim is then basically asked her story or his story, depending on the victim, signing consent papers. They`re then asked to basically stand on a sheet, take off all of their clothes on the sheet. Black light is then shown over the body to see if there is anything that glows.

Pictures are taken. Photos of their face, photos of any scratches or bruises, should there be any. And then, depending on the type of assault, and the assault that we`re talking about that is alleged right now, there was oral, anal and vaginal allegations.

So, with that particular assault, there would be oral swabs; there would be a full vaginal exam, vaginal swabs, rectal swabs. Part of the exam is also pulling 50 pubic hairs, as well as 50 head hairs, which kind of shocks a lot of people.

They`re really put through the ringer. So they really go through a variety of different things, from blood taken, having to give a urine sample, different things like that.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It began on a chat room. He was surfing chat rooms for profiles. And as he surfed AOL, we obviously have a profile online, because we are looking to intercept predators, and that`s how he came in contact with us.

But he immediately wanted a phone number. He immediately wanted to be able to have phone sex. He was so engulfed by this that he gave us his office number, his cell phone number, and had, in fact, talked to us at all three locations.


GRACE: The "he" is a high-ranking official with the Department of Homeland Security. And the "we" is a special agent disguised as a 14-year- old little girl on the Internet. Apparently, he even exchanged photos, complete with a photo of himself wearing his Homeland Security badge. Now, that`s attractive to a 14-year-old girl.

Let`s go out to a reporter with NewsRadio 970 WLFA. Eben Brown, what the hay is going on?

EBEN BROWN, NEWSRADIO 970 WFLA: Good evening, Nancy.

GRACE: I`m almost afraid to ask what`s going on. I think I know what`s going on, but go ahead.

BROWN: Well, what we have in Polk County, Florida, is a task force that -- they are very good at intercepting people online who would prey on children. They set up these false accounts pretending to be sometimes teens, sometimes younger-than-teen children. This time, they dropped a net and caught a very big fish, someone high up in a government position.

GRACE: To Sheriff Grady Judd, the Polk County sheriff -- he led this Internet sting operation -- Sheriff, it`s an honor to have you on the show tonight. How did the arrests come about?

SHERIFF GRADY JUDD, POLK COUNTY SHERIFF: Nancy, I`m glad to be here. We set up a profile of a 14-year-old girl. And we wait. This one was on AOL. Interestingly enough, Brian Doyle hit on the site, began to talk to our detectives, identified himself as the deputy director for communications for Homeland Security.


JUDD: And not only that, Nancy, we set the profile up showing that she was recovering from leukemia from cancer. So he would comfort and encourage her in one sentence online and, in the next sentence, he would be asking her for all forms of perverted sex.

GRACE: OK, I`m just taking a moment, Sheriff -- I know I`ve got you for a limited time -- to just let that whole scenario sink in. What was your action when this guy, a high-ranking official with the Homeland Security Department, was trying to solicit a 14-year-old girl?

JUDD: Well, the first thing we thought was some kid had gone online, picked up his name and was being cute, because there`s no way that something like that would occur. But, yes, as we got into the conversation...

GRACE: Wait a minute. Yes, you better put your head down. If this is true, you better hide your face. We were just showing video of the alleged predator. So when you realized it`s really him, what did you do?

JUDD: Well, we immediately stepped up the pace of the investigation, because we didn`t know what his security clearance was, how much information he had. Certainly, in the first few minutes of a conversation with our undercover detective, he compromised himself to us, which means he has set himself up for blackmail if our 14-year-old had not been an undercover detective but had been an Al Qaeda operative.

GRACE: So, Sheriff, what is the profile of a 14-year-old girl? "My favorite color is pink and purple"? "I like Pez"? "Do you watch" whatever -- what`s the profile?

JUDD: Nancy, you`re exactly right, "14 years of age," "Here`s where I go to school," "Here`s my likes," "Here`s my dislikes." And all of a sudden, we`ve got some guy that drops in here and says, "I`m"...

GRACE: Well, what are the likes and dislikes of a 14-year-old girl, mean people?

JUDD: Meet people? I don`t know. I don`t communicate with 14-year- old girls on the Internet.

GRACE: I know, but when you go about setting up a profile, what do you say? "I like to roller skate"? "I like babysitting"? I mean, how do you come up with a profile for 14-year-old girl, go online and look at other ones?

JUDD: Well, the reality of it is, many of our detectives and deputies have 14-year-old girls.


JUDD: So we ask. We ask what`s popular.

GRACE: OK. Hey, Sheriff, is it true that when you went in and busted the guy, the "alleged" perpetrator, you had actually set up for him to be on online by telling him -- by the 14-year-old girl saying, "Hey, I`ve got a Web cam. I want you to log on at X number of times that we can, like, see each other." And while he`s doing this, you break in and the screen is still up. Is that true?

JUDD: Bingo. That`s exactly how it happened. He stayed after this 14-year-old to get a Web cam, get a Web cam, get a Web cam. And, obviously, we can`t do that. So, as the investigation progressed along, we thought, "How can we make sure that he`s at the house? Well, we`ll get him online."

So, we said, "Hey, Mom`s gone. We have a Web cam." Don`t you know the look on his face?

GRACE: You think somebody called the White House up? "President Bush, you know that Homeland Security thing?"

Very quickly to executive director,, Grier Weeks. Grier, thank you for being with us. How do these online predators work?

GRIER WEEKS, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, PROTECT.ORG: Well, you know, law enforcement has started to go out now into the communities and show parents exactly how it works. What they do is they go online, put everything up on a screen, and go into a chat room, pretend to be a kid. And within a minute or two, it`s like going into a shark tank. I mean, they`re essentially surrounded by predators. The Internet has made it very easy, not only very profitable to exploit children, but very easy to hunt them.

GRACE: Hey, Grier, don`t move. We`ll be right back.

Quick break, everybody. I want to remind you: Live on Court TV this week, Milwaukee police on trial for a civilian beating, 3:00 to 5:00 Eastern.

Stay with us as we remember Private First Class Jacob Spann of Ohio, killed in an explosion, Iraq. Just last Saturday, he called home to his mom, planning to marry high school sweetheart. Jacob Spann, an American hero.



JUDD: As the investigation went on, he sent her 16 movie clips of pornography. During those 16 movie clips, as he would download them for her, then he would describe to her or ask her if she would engage in that kind of sexual conduct with him.


GRACE: Ew. Good luck, defense attorney. And we`re talking about a guy on Homeland Security Department, a high-ranking official, allegedly trying to lure a 14-year-old girl who -- guess what -- turned out to be an undercover agent.

To Brian Reich, detective with the Computer Crimes Unit, how much time does it take to set up this whole sting?

BRIAN REICH, DETECTIVE, COMPUTER CRIMES UNIT: Well, it doesn`t take that much time. It`s as simple as going on to one of the Internet service providers, Yahoo, AOL, or any of them that are online and setting up a profile, just like you would for your personal use, and putting in the information for the undercover persona that you want to portray.

I`ve gone online undercover -- it`s one of my primary jobs -- as an 11-year-old girl, a 12-year-old boy, or even an adult male looking for children as a pedophile. It takes literally minutes to set up your profile.

GRACE: But what do you say -- how do you describe yourself as a little girl?

REICH: Well, you go on, you set up your profile. And you put down what grade you`re in. You put down some of your interests and hobbies, maybe some music. And then you just simply enter chat rooms and wait for them to send you an instant message. You really don`t have to do much work.

As soon as you enter one of those rooms, these guys are going to go, they`re going to click on your profile, and they`re going to see that you`re 12, 13.

GRACE: How long do you have to wait to get a hit?

REICH: Literally minutes. We can go on right now and...

GRACE: What are these people doing? Why aren`t they at work? Why are they at home on...

REICH: Well, I tell you, Nancy, they do it while they`re at work. I`ve had many people that I`ve talked to while...

GRACE: I`ll hold that thought. Every guy I pass in the hall on his computer I`ll think is an Internet perv. Thank you.

Grier Weeks, how can we -- what can we tell parents tonight?

WEEKS: Well, you know, if you let your kid go on the Internet unsupervised, you might as well just give them drugs, too, and drop them off at Times Square. It`s the most dangerous thing in the world.

And I`m no Dr. Spock, but what every parent can do is tell their politicians that we want this treated like a serious crime. It is not. Across the land, it is not.

GRACE: OK. I hope they`re listening in Washington.

Thank you to all of our guests tonight, but our biggest thank you here on the NANCY GRACE SHOW is to you for inviting us into your home. I`m Nancy Grace, signing off for tonight. Hope to see you right here tomorrow night, 8:00 sharp Eastern.

And until then, good night, friend.