Return to Transcripts main page

Nancy Grace

Two Toddlers Found Abandoned Outside Strip Club

Aired December 14, 2007 - 20:00   ET


PAT LALAMA, GUEST HOST: Tonight, two babies abandoned right before the Christmas holidays not at a mall or a shopping center, but near a local Phoenix strip club, a 9-month-old baby girl, an 18-month-old little boy left beside a trash bin just like garbage, exposed to the elements, the temperatures dipping into the low 40s, and one of the babies found wearing only a diaper and a T-shirt. Surveillance video shows a white sedan pulling up, dumping the babies, then taking off. Tonight: Who is the mystery driver?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Who abandoned two little babies near a strip club in Phoenix? An 18-month-old little boy and a 9-month-old baby girl left propped against a trash bin behind the Bandaids Lounge. A garbage truck driver finds the babies all alone during his routine early morning rounds. A surveillance tape shows a white sedan pulling into the rear of that strip club and the driver dumping the children off. The babies taken to a local hospital, now in protective custody.


LALAMA: Also tonight: The police officer`s son of a former sergeant and suspect in his fourth wife`s disappearance reportedly goes before a grand jury, again a special grand jury investigating the disappearance of 23-year-old Stacy Peterson in the Chicago suburbs, that grand jury also investigating the mysterious bathtub death of Drew Peterson`s third wife, Kathleen Savio. Will criminal charges be next? Toxicology tests in the Savio investigation still pending. And the canal where police have been focusing their search for Stacy is now being drained.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As his son was called to testify before a grand jury looking into the disappearance of his wife, the outspoken former police sergeant continues to complain. Stacy disappeared more than a month ago. The special grand jury is also investigating the drowning death of Peterson`s third wife.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now developments in the search for Stacy Peterson, investigators draining the Chicago sanitary and ship canal in the desperate search for Stacy, searchers already removing one car, hoping to remove more objects to better search the area.


LALAMA: Good evening. I`m Pat Lalama, in for Nancy Grace. Tonight: Who abandoned two little babies near a Phoenix strip club, and why?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A garbage truck driver gets quite the surprise when he stops to collect trash in central Phoenix this morning. He finds a 9-month-old baby girl and an 18-month-old baby boy abandoned near a strip club around 5:30 AM.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My wife and I just wanted to find out what was going on with them, especially this time of year. You know, that`s no time for kids to be without parents and without love and whatnot.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The temperatures in the 40s, one of the babies wearing only a T-shirt and a diaper. Around 4:00 AM, surveillance video captures a white sedan pulling into a parking lot and leaving the children behind. The baby boy and girl now in the care of Child Protective Services.


LALAMA: All right, did you see the pictures of those babies? And can you believe it? Allison Denny, reporter for "The Arizona Republic," what`s the latest?

ALLISON DENNY, "ARIZONA REPUBLIC": Well, they have identified the children. A caller called in and recognized some pictures on TV, called in, identified the kids. And they`ve also identified and located the mother.

LALAMA: Aha! OK. Well, then, that brings us right to Sergeant Andy Hill from the Phoenix Police Department. Thank you, sir, for joining us. Have you talked to the mother, arrested the mother? What`s the latest?

SGT. ANDY HILL, PIO, PHOENIX POLICE DEPT.: Well, Pat, we have not made an arrest yet, but we have certainly spoken to the mother. You know, for us, we always have bad news, usually, it seems, but the good news is the children are all right. Right now, then we`re moving into the process of investigation, and that`s probably going to take a little time.

LALAMA: Are you at liberty to tell us what she`s told you?

HILL: We did get an initial story. There will be more interviews. You know, when you have a situation like this which involves very young children, when you have Child Protective Services involved, family investigation, there`s a protocol and process that we use now. We`re very much involved with those other agencies. So there are meetings that take place. And of course, the criminal investigation is ongoing and is our responsibility, and we will take those findings and submit them to the county attorney.

LALAMA: Sergeant, is there a father that you know of?

HILL: You know, I don`t know yet who else is involved. The initial contact was with the mother. She did give us a story that we will be continuing to look at. Of course, now what we really want to do is just continue to make sure that we take every possible piece of evidence we can find and work through this process in the investigation and make sure we find out the true story.

LALAMA: And the condition of the babies?

HILL: Is great. I mean, those are beautiful kids.

LALAMA: Oh, no kidding.

HILL: I got a lot of calls and e-mails from other officers saying, you know, I want to be first in line to adopt them. It was quite a response from within and without, from the community, as well. The media did a great job getting those photos out there, and that`s what`s led to the call that`s helped us identify them and who the mother is.

LALAMA: Well, you know, all babies are beautiful, each one worthy of being adopted and well taken care of. But Allison Denny, I mean, something about looking at these two -- they`re older. They`re not infants. They have, you know, personalities, it looks like. And God love them. What were the circumstances as you know them?

DENNY: Regarding how they were found?

LALAMA: How they were found and where they were.

DENNY: Well, around 5:30, a garbage collector was out on his rounds and he saw the kids sitting by a dumpster. And obviously, this isn`t an environment for children. There was broken glass around. They were about 10 feet from the street. So it was obviously very dangerous. He called the police, who came and got the kids. They took them to the hospital. And you know, despite those circumstances and being out in 42-degree weather, they were all right. And now the kids are in CPS custody and -- you know?

LALAMA: And we`ll hope for the best for the rest of the story. Dale Mazur, you`re the manager of Bandaids Lounge, where the kids were found. What can you tell us? And I believe you did provide surveillance footage to law enforcement?


LALAMA: Tell me everything you know.

MAZUR: Basically, I pulled up into the parking lot about 6:00 o`clock, and it was loaded full of officers, which was a shock. And when I found out what was going on, I was, like I said, shocked. So we checked the cameras to see what we could find, and it showed everything.

LALAMA: And you actually -- you`re the ones who provided the surveillance footage, where you see the white car?


LALAMA: And good for you. Great work. Do you have any reason to believe anyone who is employed at your club or patronizes your club may be involved?

MAZUR: No, there is no reason at all. I couldn`t see any of my people or any of any customers doing that.

LALAMA: OK. So have you talked to them all? Are they all shocked by it? In fact, I think you guys are putting on some sort of a fund-raiser for these children?

MAZUR: Yes. We`re putting on a toy drive and a blanket drive. We`re also accepting cash donations that are going to go for these two children.

LALAMA: Well, good for you. I`m not one to often promote strip clubs, I`ll tell you honestly, but God bless you for what you`re doing. That`s terrific.

Sergeant Andy Hill, this particular area, is it a high crime area? Is this a place where you`ve had issues before?

HILL: Well, it`s a typical downtown area. I mean, there are all kinds of issues. But it`s very much also a residential neighborhood. It`s in a very well known area of town that has a lot of people that work and live in that downtown area. So it`s not particularly different than any other downtown that`s very well run. So it`s a pretty good area of town.

But the issue really is, is that these two little kids, wherever you drop them or leave them, you can`t do that. Not only is it wrong, but it was extremely dangerous and life-threatening for these kids.

LALAMA: Well, listen, I understand completely that you really can`t get into the specifics and you have to investigate it, and you want to be fair to all parties. But can you at least tell us, I mean, did the mother seem to have, at least in her mind, some sort of reasonable excuse? Do we know that she was actually the one who dumped them off?

HILL: No, there is no indication now that she was the one that did that. However, you know, we always have to couch these things, as you know, Pat, without speculation. We have to wait until we do a very thorough investigation. We want to make sure all our ducks are in a row. And although we all have to wait for that answer a little bit longer, we certainly want the right one because we don`t want to cast any shadow on anybody that may not have been involved at all. So there`s a lot of possibilities still.

LALAMA: Well, you can put me on the list, if anything happens to those kids. I mean, I`m just madly in love with them.

Gloria -- hi, Gloria, in South Carolina. What`s your question?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m wondering if Arizona is a safe haven state?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And why these parents don`t -- if they don`t want these children, why don`t they take them to a safe place?

LALAMA: Well, Gloria, you know, you should have been in on our newsroom meetings today because that`s all we discussed today. We have the perfect person to address that tonight, and that`s Michael Morrisey, director of Baby Safe Haven in New England. Michael, can you speak to the Arizona laws regarding this?

MICHAEL MORRISEY, DIR., BABY SAFE HAVEN NEW ENGLAND: Sure can. Arizona law, I`m sorry to say, that these two -- I`ll say young children because, I mean, they`re babies, but they`re a little more than newborn babies.

LALAMA: Right. Right.

MORRISEY: The Arizona law is 72 hours and under for a baby to be brought to a hospital, police or fire station. Actually, one baby, the 9- month-old, would have been under the safe haven law, if it had been in North Dakota. That`s actually up to a year. That`s the oldest safe haven state that there is in the country.

LALAMA: Well, you know, I guess the question, Lillian Glass, psychologist and author of "I Know What You`re Thinking" -- help us understand, for those of us sitting here who have kids or know kids, please, wrap them up in a blanket, take them to a hospital. Why leave them in a dangerous situation like that? We just don`t get it. We need to understand.

LILLIAN GLASS, PSYCHOLOGIST: It is not to be understood. I mean, how could anybody do this to any living human being, let alone babies? You also have to wonder, what was the mental health condition of the person who did this, the parent? What was going on? Was this an act of anger? Was this something they did to get back at another party? What happened here? Again, it`s just pure speculation at this point, but one really has to look at the psychological status of what was going on with her mentally.

LALAMA: Well, let`s backtrack just a little bit with Dr. Jake Deutsch, doctor of emergency medicine. It looks like they`re going to fare well, but it could have been a lot worse, correct?

DR. JAKE DEUTSCH, DIR. OF EMERGENCY MEDICINE: Oh, absolutely. You talk about the effects of hypothermia, in 20 minutes, a child this age that`s only in loose clothing could have become very sick. The body starts to shiver, and once the shivering effect gives up, then it starts to shut down. So they could have actually had cardiovascular collapse. They could have had problems with tissue injury, and it certainly could have caused respiratory arrest and possibly death. So these are very lucky babies. We`re very glad to hear the outcome. And hopefully, they will be placed in appropriate homes.

LALAMA: And Pat Brown, criminal profiler, you know, Sergeant Hill is wonderful to talk to us about as much as he can. So really, all we can discuss is sort of the general aspect of a case like this. What do you begin to look for? They know who the mother is. Now what?

PAT BROWN, CRIMINAL PROFILER: Well, I would say, first of all, regardless of who it is, to me, this is attempted murder because when the person abandoned those children there, they knew very well they might easily die. And so, to me, I worry about many times, when children are saved and they`re brought back into the system, that a lot of times, we look at the psychological state of the mother or the father, the step -- whoever it is, and we say, Well, they were undergoing some stress, and therefore we`re going to work with them. That always concerns me because this is attempted murder, and these children should never, ever go back near those people again, whoever it was who put them there.

LALAMA: Well, Dan Horowitz, defense attorney, would you agree with that, that no matter what the story is, they don`t deserve -- the mother does not deserve to have them back?

DAN HOROWITZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, I can`t judge that because I don`t know what the mother`s story is. One thing -- I noticed, actually, two important things about these kids. They`re very close in age, so I wonder what was going on...

LALAMA: Nine months apart.

HOROWITZ: ... in terms of the mom`s life.

LALAMA: Right. Nine months apart.

HOROWITZ: And two, they look, to me anyway, very healthy. So if that`s the case, if they`ve had a good upbringing until this incident, maybe the mother had a psychotic breakdown and maybe medication could, with counseling, help reunite this family. It`s very easy to jump on this mother and just throw the book at her without looking at why. And I think we should not do that until we hear her side of the story.

LALAMA: Well, Dan, that`s fair enough. But Susan Moss, family law attorney, I mean, how about not putting them in a place where they could freeze to death?

SUSAN MOSS, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY: These two kids were left at a strip mall (SIC). What, were they waiting for them to turn 21?

LALAMA: Club. Strip club.

MOSS: Strip club. Excuse me. What, were they waiting for them to turn 21? There is no excuse. This is a crime. It certainly is endangerment. It is probably neglect. Is it attempted murder? Well, the facts will show us. But this certainly is a crime, and these kids can`t be returned.

LALAMA: Alex Sanchez, what do you say?

ALEX SANCHEZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, you know, from the information I hear, I have no idea whether or not the mother had anything at all to do with this. What if the father or the boyfriend or some other individual just took those kids and went and dropped them off at that location without this woman having any knowledge of that? What if she tried to report it to the police? What if she`s a battered woman, or what if she has some other psychological problems involved? So at the present time, without more information from the police officer, you know, I don`t think we can make that type of judgment.

LALAMA: Well, you know, you`re right, we don`t know all the circumstances. But it`s a shock to the system.

Let`s hear what Joe from Illinois has to say. Hey, Joe.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hi, Pat. I was just wondering if the children were found asleep, and if anyone knows how long they were there? And did a male or a female drop them off?

LALAMA: Oh, that`s very -- well, that I don`t think we`re certain of. Allison Denny, were the children asleep? I mean, what were they doing when they were found? Do you know that?

DENNY: I don`t know what the children were doing when they were found. But I do know that they would have been there for about an hour- and-a-half, if they were dropped off at 4:00 and then found at 5:30.

LALAMA: Sergeant Andy Hill, do you know whether the children were asleep when they were found?

HILL: You know, I don`t know for sure, but I am told they were sitting up against or propped up against that garbage bin, which -- of course, it was still dark here at that time and nobody could have seen them. No vehicle driving in would ordinarily have seen them. So it really was almost a miracle or a great stroke of luck that that driver was able to be able to determine that as he was heading to his job, so...

LALAMA: It was a trash truck driver, right?

HILL: That`s correct. And he did a great job.

LALAMA: Absolutely. Dale Mazur, who`s the manager of Bandaids Lounge, give us a sort of a picture of that neighborhood, where your club is and where these babies were relative to the location.

MAZUR: The dumpster is in the back of the club, in the back of the parking lot. It faces a small side street. Bandaids is -- the front of Bandaids borders a major intersection that during rush hour, we`re talking thousands of cars go down. And it was definitely a dangerous area. I would consider the area mainly blue-collar.

LALAMA: So you`re saying that those babies sitting there -- would there be a lot of cars going back and forth that could have noticed them, or were they more obscured?

MAZUR: At the time, no, they were definitely obscure because they were in the back of the lot, I`d say a good 100 feet, if not more, from the major street. Yes, there was just no way anybody could have seen them.

LALAMA: Wow. And nothing like this has happened before in your area?

MAZUR: Never that I know of.

LALAMA: Wow. Unbelievable.

To tonight`s "Case Alert." Florida police search for a killer and are now warning Christmas shoppers to beware after a mom and her little girl are found dead in a mall parking lot, 47-year-old Nancy Bociccio (ph) and her 8-year-old daughter found inside their brand-new SUV around midnight at the Boca Raton Mall, the engine still running. Police say it appears to be a robbery turned double homicide, and now investigating a possible connection to another robbery at the same mall back in August. A $350,000 reward in the case. Anyone with information, please, please call Boca Raton police, 561-338-1352.

And on a much lighter note, check out the latest message from Nancy about the twins. And coming soon, video of Nancy with the twins will make its debut on the baby blog. That`s all at And remember, Nancy makes her much anticipated return right here on Headline News January 7, 8:00 PM Eastern. Mark it down or your calendar.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As I pulled up, I saw the two kids were right here. The sister was leaning right up against the dumpster here, and the little boy, I guess her brother, was leaning right up against her. And then as I got closer, it looked like some dolls or Cabbage Patch kids or something. And then as I got real close, I saw one of them move. They were leaning right up against the dumpster. When I went and picked up the girl, she started whimpering a little bit when I took -- when I took my coat off of her to hold her to try to get them warm.


LALAMA: Oh, my goodness! All right, Sergeant Andy Hill from the Phoenix Police Department, what happens next? You said you`ve talked to the mother. What might we anticipate?

HILL: Well, we have to find out what happened. Obviously, we`re all offended, and rightly so, by what happened, by leaving those little kids out there by themselves. So we need to get the facts and we need to get them straight, and that`s what our investigators will do. Once they compile that criminal investigation, they will submit it to the county attorney`s office. At the minimum, now we`re looking at a child neglect. It may be more because we don`t know exactly what happened. It could escalate to the point of child abuse. But we`ll have to see. And then, of course, next week, will be meetings in our family investigations bureau with the Child Protective Services, and they will determine where the kids are going to remain.

LALAMA: Pat Brown, criminal profiler, is it safe to say that most people who do this are either, A, mentally ill, or B, on drugs or alcohol, or is that just too broad?

BROWN: Well, I would say that, certainly, they`ve got emotional problems. They may be using drugs, which adds to them

But I have a problem with this concept of child neglect and child abuse. Let`s take a picture and say a man forces his wife to get into the car, drives it to a desolate area, forces her down into the bottom of a mineshaft and drives away, thinking she`s going to die down there. And she gets discovered by some odd stroke of luck by some hikers, who aren`t usually in the area and she`s saved. Do we just say, The guy`s got some mental problems and I guess he`s got some abuse problems? No, he`s charged with attempted homicide because that`s exactly what it is.

So if this mother`s involved -- and I don`t know that she is yet, but whoever did this purposely put these children out there, knowing full well they could die. This wasn`t -- there was nothing else done about this. I don`t care what the problems are. But we tend to, for some reason, when it comes to children, just call it child neglect or child abuse, and I don`t understand it. It`s like they`re not real people.

LALAMA: Well, family law attorney Susan Moss, it appears -- and I`ve seen this myself in California courts, that, you know, they`re very reluctant to take the kids away from mothers. There`s that mother thing. And it almost seems like they get a lot of second, third and fourth chances. Am I right?

MOSS: That is true, and that is what happens because oftentimes, the authorities prefer family reunification. But strip malls (SIC) are never safe havens. And in this case it`s very clear somebody made an awful, awful choice that could have cost these kids their life.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was almost like it couldn`t be real. The driver of this garbage truck was finishing up his route this morning when, in the dark, he thought he saw something, two young children just sitting in front of a dumpster in the parking lot of a strip club at 7th Street and Virginia. Police estimate the boy is about a year-and-a-half, the girl as young as 9 months. They were just sitting there, steps away from what later becomes a very busy road.


LALAMA: I`m Pat Lalama, in for Nancy Grace. Let`s go to the great state of Pennsylvania and a call from Shirley. Hey, Shirley.


LALAMA: Well, thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have a question. Number one -- or a statement and a question.

LALAMA: OK. Go for it. We have a little bit of time, so go.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. I`m just going -- we`re just going through this in Pennsylvania with a baby girl right now. But what my main question is, that I`d like to know why the laws are only for up to a year-old child because there`s children that are older than that that have been found abandoned, and you know, they need the same kind of care, you know?

LALAMA: OK. Great question. Michael Morrisey from Baby Safe Haven New England, what`s your response to that?

MORRISEY: Well, initially, when the laws passed, they were for the plight that we`ve seen of newborn babies being abandoned. But since the laws have passed, we`ve seen women seeing these safe haven locations as a non-threatening environment where we`ve had babies up to a year old brought in. And of course, that`s like waving a big red flag that, you know, this parent, this baby, everybody needs help. And they get the help, and it`s in a confidential manner and everybody`s in safe hands. So I think we just need to promote them more. And we just had a baby surrendered less than 10 miles from you about nine hours ago.

LALAMA: When we come back, the 28-year-old son of former police sergeant and suspect Drew Peterson reportedly goes before a grand jury.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Drew Peterson, a suspect in his wife`s disappearance, apparently isn`t happy his son was called to testify before a grand jury looking into the disappearance of his wife. The outspoken former police sergeant continues to complain. Stacy disappeared more than a month ago. The special grand jury is also investigating the drowning death of Peterson`s third wife.


LALAMA: I`m Pat Lalama in for Nancy Grace. Every day a little bit of new information. And Pat Brown, criminal profiler, the newest is that they`re draining part of the canal, that one we keep talking about. How significant is that?


PAT BROWN, CRIMINAL PROFILER: . Pat, that there has got to be something in that canal, so I am guessing that they have to have some pretty valid information to spend this much time at one location and just getting to really the bottom of it to see if Stacy is down there.

LALAMA: Well, let`s ask our good friend Kathy Chaney, the reporter for The Chicago Defender. Do you have any inside info on why they are interested in draining?

KATHY CHANEY, THE CHICAGO DEFENDER: It will give them better leeway to remove all of the cars, trucks and cabs that are down there, so pretty much the drainage is for removing the stuff that is down there, so they can actually do a more thorough search and know what they`re actually finding down there.

LALAMA: So you`re not hearing that it is because they have like some specific information they may have gotten from a grand jury witness?

CHANEY: No, no, no. Not at all. It`s a large canal. There`s so much stuff down there that needs to be removed before they can even try to do some type of effective search that they need to get that stuff out of there. So draining the water is right now their best option.

LALAMA: Well, back to Dr. Deutsch, talk to us about bodies submerged in water, in cold water, a long period, what, we`re on two months now if she should happen to be there, what would that mean to the investigation?

DR. JAKE DEUTSCH, DOCTOR OF EMERGENCY MEDICINE: It`s going to make it hard and I think one of the reasons that they`re trying to drain the canal is to make that a little bit more in their advantage. So exposure to the water is going to cause tissue destruction, it`s going to erode evidence, it`s going to make their job much more difficult.

But like I had said before, if there is a container, there may actually be some preservation of some of the forensics and information that they`re looking for.

LALAMA: Alex Sanchez, defense attorney, time is passing, we`re on -- past two months now since Stacy Peterson`s disappearance. Does that bode well for this person of interest, now suspect Drew Peterson?

ALEX SANCHEZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Look, I mean, every day that passes that no additional information is developed linking Drew Peterson to the crime is only good for Drew Peterson. So you know, unless the police find some additional information in that canal, this case is going nowhere. If they find additional information, it`s significant, if they find nothing, it`s insignificant.

LALAMA: But, Susan Moss, family law, it`s not beyond the realm of possibility that you charge someone without the body, it happens.

SUSAN MOSS, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY & CHILD ADVOCATE: Absolutely. And the only advantage to the prosecution regarding the passage of time is that Drew Peterson keeps on speaking. And the more he talks, the more trouble he`s getting himself into.

LALAMA: Well, I would like to ask Dan Horowitz, you have been watching the shenanigans of Drew Peterson in terms of his dealings with the media. Are you amongst the crowd that says shut up, Drew?

DAN HOROWITZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, I think he`s actually making his defense. I mean, we know he`s sort of a vile, unpleasant guy. But that does not mean that he killed his wife. But you can see why his wife may have left him because he`s so abhorrent to everyone. So in his own way he`s making his case. I don`t think he`s hurting himself.

LALAMA: Lillian Glass, all of these things he keeps saying, I mean, we have all done our own personal armchair psychoanalysis, you`ll have to forgive us for doing that. But we can`t help but think the guy loves the attention. I mean, look what happened, he shut up for a few days, and now he`s back saying Stacy shot the gun herself and my ex-fiance, she`s a trollop, that`s my word. He didn`t actually say trollop. But you know, he really can`t stop, can he?

LILLIAN GLASS, PSYCHOLOGIST: Sure, this is what sociopaths do, this is what people who are controlling narcissistic people do, this is how they talk. And they`re never at fault, it`s always the other person, they have a story for everything, an excuse for everything. And what we`re really seeing is pure pathology -- pure psychopathology when we look at this man.

LALAMA: Yes. I think you`re right. Let`s head south to Alabama and Casie. Hi, Casie.

CALLER: Hi, my question is, if an actual citizen killed a cop and they get worse time than if you hurt another regular citizen. How come cops don`t get stiffer sentences for doing something they do like with Jessie Davis and.


LALAMA: So, Casie, I think what you`re asking is, should cops be held to a higher standard if they commit a crime? But, Pat Brown, that doesn`t seem constitutional, somehow, does it?

BROWN: Well, not really. I mean, I think one of the reasons it`s so important not to shoot down cops is because they`re putting their life on the line when they are going out to protect the citizens, and that`s the whole issue about it, to protect them.

I want to say something about Drew, though. You know why I think Drew is so angry, he did not have another woman lined up and ready to go before his wife wanted to leave him. I mean, up until this time, he has always had that one in the wings. And we haven`t heard about anybody, have we?

LALAMA: Well, you know.

BROWN: She must have beat him to the punch. You know, Susan Moss, I think Pat makes a good point. This is a guy -- this guy, like, he is one of those guys who can`t be alone. He has to -- he can`t leave wife number X until wife number Z comes along, I mean, do you want to throw in some weight on that one?

MOSS: Yes. I mean, he`s telling us that he needs to get a date, but what he really needs is to get a clue. And he`s probably trolling to find his next young bride. Remember, he was 47 when he met Stacy, who was only 17. Maybe he wasn`t ready because he doesn`t yet have his new suit to go to the next prom.

LALAMA: Hey, Alex Sanchez, are we women piling on poor Drew here?

SANCHEZ: You know, look, he may be the most repulsive guy in the world and personally I would not want him as a friend of mine. But the bottom line is that really doesn`t substitute for evidence. And you`re talking about prosecuting him without a body, but there has to be some type of evidence somewhere indicating that a crime was committed. And at the present time, that does not appear to be the case.

LALAMA: Kathy Chaney, back to this search in the canal. I guess a lot of people were thinking, well, gee, they`re honing in on something specific. Will they be working through the weekend in that canal, do you know?

SANCHEZ: They expect to because I know that we`re supposed to get a lot of snow coming into the weekend so I`m pretty sure that they`re going to be working more before all the snow gets in to hamper their efforts.

LALAMA: And Dr. Jake Deutsch, you know, snow, rain, sleet, hail, it just must be so difficult. And it must -- well, you know, let me ask you this before we get to the weather issue, if there is a body -- we`re hoping against anything that there isn`t, but if there is a body that they should find, and let`s say she`s in one of those containers people are talking about, that helps this investigation, does it not?

DEUTSCH: Yes, I think it could actually serve as a time capsule preserving the information that they`re looking for. So the best-case scenario in order to preserve genetic information, the blood, any body fluids, is to have a warm, moist environment. So it may not be warm, but it may be actually containing what they`re looking for.

The other things that I think are very important is the cold exposures that these rescuers are going to be undertaking, so I mean, we have to be thinking about that as well, we don`t want to have other people that are getting injured because of all of this scenario.

LALAMA: Pat Brown, criminal profiler, two months, we`re past two months now. It just gets harder and harder for law enforcement.

BROWN: Well, it does. They really, really need to get this physical evidence. But you know, I disagree with the possibility, you know, when you`re thinking about this body being in a barrel and worrying about how decomposed the body is, and that would thwart getting evidence off of it, hey, if you have got a body in a barrel, I guarantee you that`s a homicide, because Stacy wouldn`t have put herself in it.

So if you have got that, a homicide, a body in a barrel, and that barrel came out of Drew`s house, and he was seen doing something with it, well, I think you can put one plus two equals three. So I don`t know that it matters so much how decomposed the body is as long as we know it`s Stacy.

LALAMA: Mississippi is the state and Marie, the caller. Hey, Marie.


LALAMA: What is your question?

CALLER: Is it possible that he could have cremated her and scattered her ashes? He is not afraid of them finding her body.

LALAMA: Dan Horowitz, is it possible he -- if he did anything, if he did anything, what`s in the realm of possibility in terms of destroying a body?

HOROWITZ: Well, you know, if he was Tony Soprano, he could probably cremate the body or cut it up at some sausage factory, but I think in real life, given this guy`s capabilities, if he`s guilty, and I don`t see that there`s evidence of it, I think the best scenario is that he would dump that body.

And you know what, Pat, if he`s smart and he is, and he did it -- if he did it, he would have put the body somewhere where it would not float up or be easily found. So I think they`re probably not going to find anything. And even if they do, what`s going to tie him to putting the body there? They have some problems in this case.

LALAMA: Susan Moss, very quickly, is there a strong circumstantial case right now as we speak today?

MOSS: Absolutely. We have a lot of evidence, most of that evidence unfortunately will never see the light of day in court. You have two witnesses that really point a finger to him. First you have that stepbrother who says that he helped Drew carry some sort of container...


LALAMA: Well, that`s what they say, he has got all kinds of problems.

MOSS: ... and there are some other issues as well.

LALAMA: Yes. We will get back to that in just a minute. On a much lighter note, thankfully, check out the latest message from Nancy about the twins. And coming soon, video of Nancy with the twins will be up on the Baby Blog. That`s all at Remember, Nancy returns to HEADLINE NEWS, January 7th, 8:00 p.m. Eastern, right in this very chair. Mark it down on your calendar.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My name is Sergeant Brown (ph) from HAC-115 (ph) (INAUDIBLE), Iraq. I would like to say seasons` greetings to everybody back home. I love you.





DREW PETERSON, SUSPECT IN WIFE`S DISAPPEAR: (INAUDIBLE) it`s just a little irritating for him, you know, to be caught up in this, because he`s my son. So I really would like him to be left alone, but what can you do?


LALAMA: Hi. I`m Pat Lalama in for Nancy Grace. The other news today in the Peterson case, he has an adult son named Stephen (ph) who is also a police officer in another department. And Kathy Chaney, there is some interesting news about him appearing before the grand jury. Go for it.

CHANEY: Yes. He appeared for the second time before the grand jury and it was about the investigation into Stacy`s disappearance. But Drew is kind of upset, saying they`re bothering him, he has absolutely nothing to do with this, and then you`re calling him back again, leave him alone.

LALAMA: Well, Kathy, just very quickly, wasn`t there talk or reports or something that he had been interviewed once before and he allegedly had a meeting around the time of Stacy`s disappearance with another police officer friend of his who had been fired, and dad -- Drew.

CHANEY: Yes. And in fact I can`t remember the gentleman`s name who we`re talking about, but he said that he expected to be called by state police and by the grand jury just because he was, you know, friends with Steve, but he was never called. He was never called, but he said he wouldn`t be surprised if he was.

LALAMA: You know, I`m going to make a jump to Lillian Glass, psycho - - or psychologist, excuse me, it must be a hard situation as a sibling -- or as the son of Drew Peterson or anyone whose parent is in trouble. You know, you`re kind of between a rock and a hard place.

GLASS: Exactly. Definitely, because you have the loyalty towards your parent and yet you have to do the right thing. And when you just said, Pat, that it must be difficult being Drew Peterson`s son, that`s an understatement because this man is clearly a narcissist control freak and you wonder if his son went through a lot while he was growing up.

LALAMA: It does -- and I believe they were very, very close, even referred to as like, best friends is what I have read. Pat Brown, criminal profiler, in your career, how often do you hear of sons and daughters helping their parents hide evidence, get involved, anything like that?

BROWN: A whole lot, unfortunately.

LALAMA: Really?

BROWN: Oh yes, a whole lot. It`s really sad, you know, it is, it is that loyalty thing and they don`t want to go against their parent even though they know what`s really true. And it`s funny because Drew Peterson should be -- hey, he says he has got absolutely nothing to hide, he had nothing to do with Stacy`s disappearance. He should be thrilled his son is going to go in there and just tell them, dad is a great guy and there`s just absolutely nothing he could possibly tell them. He should be thrilled.

LALAMA: But, Susan Moss, family law attorney, I mean, if the authorities have some information, they have a right to ask him, right? I mean, we can`t be sympathetic?

MOSS: Absolutely, Stephen Peterson appeared once, if he`s being called to appear a second time. That means there are new questions that have to be answered.

LALAMA: Yes. That is a good point, Alex Sanchez. This is -- I mean, in your experience, you get called back to the grand jury, that`s significant, can`t deny that, right?

SANCHEZ: Well, you know, this guy can provide a wealth of information to the grand jury. They can ask him about conversations he had with his father, right, relating to this information that the father has been discussing on the news. They can talk about whether or not there is any items missing from the house, a gun or plastic bags or these blue bins that we have been hearing about. Or they could just ask him, do you have any information from any source whatsoever indicating your father had something to do with this.

LALAMA: But, Dan Horowitz, there`s no privilege like there is with a wife, right?

HOROWITZ: No, there is no privilege. And you know, really, I think this is a fishing expedition at this point. The only thing that`s going to sink Drew Peterson is if the allegation that he dumped his wife in a container turns out to be seemingly true when they find that very same container with his wife. Otherwise, going into his background, deconstructing this man so he`s no longer the police officer, but a bad battering, mean, husband, that`s really what`s going on in that grand jury room, I believe.

LALAMA: So you think they`re picking on him, huh?

HOROWITZ: I think they`re picking on him because they don`t have hard evidence. And if they don`t get that hard evidence, they don`t convict him.

LALAMA: Pat Brown, do you think they`re picking on him if they call him back a second time? You would run out of questions, I think, unless you have got something specific to ask.

BROWN: Right. Well, I do think it is a fishing expedition. But I think they`re hoping that the son will lead them to the actual physical evidence that maybe he knows enough that can point them into the direction of the physical evidence that they actually can then charge Drew.

LALAMA: God, I would hate to be in that situation. Let`s take a call from Connecticut and Bob. Hey, Bob.

CALLER: Hey, Pat.


CALLER: How are you?

LALAMA: I`m great, thanks. What`s your question?

CALLER: My question is, what are the legal requirements or tests that has to be met to charge him with suspicion of murder?

LALAMA: OK. That`s a very good question. Let`s take that to Susan. What exactly -- the caller wants to know what legal requirements, what do you got to have? Excuse the improper grammar.

MOSS: Well, what is going to happen is, you have a grand jury, a group of citizens just like yourself who are being presented with a substantial amount of evidence. And if they show that there`s evidence that could lead somebody to conclude that he committed the crime, you`re going to see an indictment come down.

LALAMA: And let`s go to our caller from Tennessee, and his name happens to be Dallas. Hey, Dallas, go ahead.

CALLER: Hey, my question is, her gun that they said that she was shot through the floor with, was it took in evidence?

LALAMA: The question is, was there evidence on that or did someone take.

CALLER: No, did they take it from the house, if it was her gun...

LALAMA: OK. I got you. Kathy Chaney, I don`t think anything was ever done back then. The question now is, have law enforcement gone back in to look at the hole in the floor?

CHANEY: No, they have not. I have not received any word that they have done that at all.

LALAMA: OK, all right. Dan Horowitz, you know, the caller that asked about meeting the standard for an indictment, you don`t think it`s there? You`re just saying it`s just absolutely not there?

HOROWITZ: Well, I mean, a grand jury indictment is a very low standard. It`s basically whether there is a suspicion of the crime that`s reasonable and rational. But I think that in this case, you have a disappeared human being and that -- and then a man who`s a very bad man. And that is not enough to say that he did it. We want as a society to say he did it because he seems so despicable. But that is not the basis of a valid indictment.


LALAMA: Tonight, a look back on the stories and the people making the rest of the headlines this week.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Drew Peterson killed his third wife, that`s what Stacy Peterson`s pastor says she confessed to him this summer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, he did the right thing and now there may be not just one but two unsolved murder cases.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Breaking news, according to the Associated Press, Las Vegas police say six young people either in junior high or high school have been shot as they got off a school bus.

Some of the kids on that school bus told me they scattered as the bullets flew by here on the corner of Walnut (ph) and Alexander (ph) in Las Vegas.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The former police officer apparently set up a Web site to collect money for his defense. And then took it back down. It said he wanted to collect money from people who believed he deserves a defense without going broke.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This guy puts the I in idiot. He`s just making this worse and worse and worse for himself.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) Drew Peterson responding to a claim that he fired a gun at his wife. He said she had a fascination for handguns and that he bought her one for Valentine`s Day, telling the paper, "nothing says `I love you` like a Glock."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would have his jaw broken and wired and not let him be heard by anybody.

LALAMA: It seems a little harsh, I mean, you know, to accuse her of like getting hot for the minister.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He did tell me that she drove a motorcycle with her bikini top to see him.

LALAMA: I have covered a lot of trials, but hearing this kind of stuff before we even get into a courtroom is just like, whoa.


LALAMA: Well, tonight, let`s stop to remember Marine Lance Corporal Jeremy Burris, only 22, from Tacoma, Washington, killed in Iraq, proud of his Texan roots, he loved playing in the family tree house as a kid. A man of great faith, involved in his local church youth group. He loved singing and playing guitar. He leaves behind grieving parents, Fred (ph) and Carla (ph), four brothers and two sisters. Jeremy Burris, truly an American hero.

Thank you to all of our guests and to you at home for being with us. Remember to visit Nancy`s Baby Blog at See you tomorrow night at 8:00 p.m. sharp Eastern. Until then, have a great, great evening. Good night.