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Nancy Grace

Mom Allegedly Killed Baby to Hide Underage Father

Aired September 04, 2009 - 20:00   ET


NANCY GRACE, HOST: Breaking news tonight. A young Ohio mom makes a desperate 911 call when her 5-week-old baby boy goes missing, the baby later found dead, plastic-bagged and thrown away like trash. Tonight, in a bizarre twist, we uncover motive for murder, to conceal the crime of underage sex. Who is the alleged perp? Mommy. That`s right, Mommy accused of killing her 5-week-old baby to hide the fact the biological father is a little 14-year-old boy himself. PS, Mommy`s pushing 30.

And in the last hours, Mommy in court, refusing to talk to social workers about the welfare of her other children, ages 1 and 3. Why? Because it might -- might -- compromise her defense. She chooses her own defense case over the welfare of her other children. She`s also claiming - - surprise, surprise -- mental illness defense. Crazy? Crazy like a fox!


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is a young mom accused of murdering her child to cover up the identity and age of the child`s father claiming insanity?

ASCUNCION VILLA, MOTHER OF ISRAEL SANTOS: Yes. He has my son, and I haven`t seen him since last night.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Asuncion Villa was put in jail last week and charged with murder, abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence. The grand jury has added the charge of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor to that list.

VILLA: He`s 21.

911 OPERATOR: And what relation? He`s your boyfriend, you said?

VILLA: We were dating in the past, but we haven`t seen each other for almost, I should say, nine months, eight months. And he has my newborn.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Villa was on public assistance, and if she wanted to keep getting it, she had to help identify the father. County prosecutor Robin Piper (ph) won`t say anything about who the alleged father is. He does say it was inevitable that someone would have eventually found Villa out.

911 OPERATOR: Is he the father of the child?

VILLA: Yes, he is.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The attorney representing 26-year-old Asuncion Avila-Villa, accused of crushing her son`s skull, says the young mom suffers from mental illness. Police say Avila-Villa admitted to cops that she grabbed the baby by the face with both hands and shook him. The child was underweight, had a broken arm and suffered severe brain injuries.


GRACE: And tonight, live to North Carolina, a 2-year-old baby wearing nothing but a diaper -- no shirt, no pants, no shoes -- wandering alone down the central lane of a busy, winding highway, clutching a baby doll. Mommy`s at the local bar with a snootful at just 4:30 in the afternoon. Tonight, the frantic 911 call of a driver who spots the baby. We have the 911.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have found what looks like about a 2-year-old little girl wandering around, and nobody here knows who she belongs to. She was in the road when I found her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A motorist driving on a busy street couldn`t believe what he was seeing, a 2-year-old toddler wandering down the center of the road in only a diaper, her mother nowhere to be found.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where`s your mommy at?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What happened to your mommy?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The speed limit is only 35 miles per hour here, but the road is narrow, with virtually no shoulder, and driver visibility is limited because of slight hills and curves.

911 OPERATOR: Is the child OK?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She`s fine, but I just don`t know who she belongs to. And I mean, I found her in the middle of the road in a disposable diaper, and that`s it -- no shoes, no other clothes, carrying a baby doll.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If this person hadn`t been conscientious enough to stop and to get the child out of the road, in just a matter of a few minutes, it could really have been bad.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police respond and canvas the area for the girl`s mom. Eventually, police find the girl`s grandparents, who reportedly say cops should check the local bar. Police find Mom, Tammy Medlin (ph), and take her into custody, Medlin facing charges of child neglect, driving under the influence and driving with a revoked license. The baby in custody of her father.


GRACE: And to Satsuma, Florida. A 5-year-old little girl tucked into bed, five hours later, she`s gone, vanished, the back door propped wide open. Daddy comes home from the night shift to find not a trace of little Haleigh.

Bombshell tonight. We confirm a major blow-out between Haleigh`s dad and stepmom just before Haleigh disappears, the call a part of phone records now in the hands of investigators, revealing a crucial timeline. Is it motive for murder? And tonight, we double confirm with polygraph experts new stepmom Misty Croslin failed her poly, quote, "miserably." We also hear while family and friends push Croslin to undergo hypnosis about the night Haleigh goes missing, she refuses.

Is there finally a break in the case? Croslin still says she was tricked into that poly, but says she passed. Well, that`s not what the polygrapher tells us. Croslin revealing she`s afraid her phone`s tapped. When a child is missing, who cares if your phone`s tapped? What is there for her to hide?

We also learn Croslin`s bed made up, not slept in the night Haleigh vanishes. Was she ever even in the home? Croslin changing her story, saying up to four people in the home the night Haleigh goes missing but calling it all a dream-like memory. Who were the people? Croslin caught on tape trying to explain the failed poly. We have the video.

And exclusive tonight, for the first time since Croslin reportedly flunks the poly, Haleigh Cummings`s grandmother with us live. Where is 5- year-old Haleigh?


MISTY CROSLIN, HALEIGH`S BABY-SITTER/STEPMOTHER: They haven`t left me alone for six months. I`ve been the one, the main focus. They just need to move on and look for the right person.

GRACE: Crystal, what do you make of the recent developments, the developments especially about Misty Croslin flunking a polygraph?

CRYSTAL SHEFFIELD, HALEIGH`S MOTHER: Well, I thought all along that she had something to do with it, and now this kind of just proves it. I mean, she`s the last one to see our daughter, and her stories just don`t add up.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Misty had apparently been gone for several days prior to Haleigh going missing. She had just come back into the house. They had had arguments about possibly her entertaining other people outside of their relationship.

911 OPERATOR: OK, sir, let me talk to your wife. Let me get some information from her.




911 OPERATOR: Can I talk to her?



CUMMINGS: How the (DELETED) can you let my daughter get stole (DELETED)?

GRACE: Now that you`ve been told, whether you accept it or not, that your wife has flunked a poly, have you asked her what happened?

CUMMINGS: I asked her, but I don`t get any answers from her about, you know -- I don`t see -- what she`s telling me is not inconsistent.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you intentionally withhold any information regarding Haleigh`s disappearance? Her answer was no. She failed it miserably, with a 99 percent deception.

CROSLIN: They go out and look for the right person, maybe they would have the answers. But they`re trying to get all the answers from me that I don`t have.


GRACE: Good evening. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us. A young Ohio mom makes a desperate 911 call when her 5-week-old baby goes missing, the baby later found dead, plastic-bagged and thrown away like trash. In a bizarre twist tonight, we uncover motive for murder, to conceal the crime of underaged sex. The alleged perp, Mommy.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Asuncion Avila-Villa reported to police that her baby was missing, a 5-week-old son. She said that an ex-boyfriend took him.

VILLA: I was calling because last night, one of my ex-boyfriends came to pick up one of my sons. He said he was going to take him out to show him to some of his friends, and he hasn`t come back yet. This is last night.

911 OPERATOR: He has -- he has your son, you`re saying, with him?

VILLA: Yes, he has my son, and I haven`t seen him since last night.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hamilton police started searching for 5-week old Israel Santos.

911 OPERATOR: And what relation? He`s your boyfriend, you said?

VILLA: We were dating in the past, but we haven`t seen each other for almost, I should say, nine months, eight months. And he has my newborn.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When police showed up, they got the feeling that something wasn`t adding up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She had placed the child in a trash bag in a garbage can, and the child was dead.

GRACE: So the mom tries to direct police to who she says is the baby`s father.

They find the baby dead, 5-week-old baby boy. And the motive behind the murder is what?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You put two plus two together, she`s trying to get rid of the baby so no one will discover that the father was under the age of 16.

GRACE: Motive for murder is to conceal the crime of underaged sex. The bio dad is a child himself.


GRACE: To Jack Crumley, anchor with Newsradio 700 WLW. Jack, thank you for being with us. She was in court, refusing to speak with social workers about the welfare of her other children, yet she`s claiming insanity? She came up with this big fabrication about who killed the baby, actually pointing to someone else, yet she`s trying to say she`s insane or mentally ill?

JACK CRUMLEY, 800 WLW NEWSRADIO (via telephone): Well, that was the argument that was made by her attorneys today in court. They`re concerned that she could say something to harm the case. And she does have some pending child custody hearings coming up.

GRACE: Well, I think this may actually impinge on her child custody case. Matt Zarrell, I`m looking at her in court. She seems to have a very calm and composed demeanor. Explain to me how she`s deciding to claim mental defense, insanity, that she killed her 5-week-old baby because she was insane.

MATT ZARRELL, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: Well, at this point, we don`t know what the mental illness is that Suzie has. But what I can tell you is that in court, she showed no emotion. She didn`t cry. When the attorney mentioned she suffered mental illness, she didn`t react at all.

GRACE: Let`s unleash the lawyers, Susan Moss, New York, John Burris, San Francisco, Penny Douglas Furr, Atlanta. Susan Moss, the other two children that she`s got, two out of I believe four children, one is 1, one is 3 years old. She refuses to even speak to social services about their welfare because it might hurt her defense case? And what do you think about motive for murder? She`s trying to cover up who the bio dad is. He`s a 14-year-old little boy.

SUSAN MOSS, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY: Absolutely. She doesn`t have to worry about speaking to her children ever again because not only is she going to lose custody, she`s going to lose all parental rights. And she may try in vain, but this sick psychopathic loser is certainly not going to be legally insane. I mean, she had the intelligence enough to lie to the cops, also to try to hide the body. She doesn`t have a prayer of proving insanity.

GRACE: John Burris, is she within her rights to refuse to talk about the welfare of her other children?

JOHN BURRIS, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I think so. Given where she is right now, she has a much more serious case involved. I don`t think that she should worry about the other two children.

GRACE: So you don`t care about what`s to become of the 1 and 3-year- old, Burris?

BURRIS: Well, social services will take care of them. She has a lot of (INAUDIBLE)

GRACE: Well, that`s a fine attitude, social services will take care of the baby!

BURRIS: Well, they will find some place for the children to be. But I don`t think she should talk any more about it.



VILLA: I was calling because last night, one of my ex-boyfriends came to pick up one of my sons. He said he was going to take him out to show him to some of his friends, and he hasn`t come back yet. This is last night.

911 OPERATOR: He has -- he has your son, you`re saying, with him?

VILLA: Yes. He has my son, and I haven`t seen him since last night.

911 OPERATOR: What`s his name?

VILLA: Eric.

911 OPERATOR: How old is Eric?

VILLA: He`s (INAUDIBLE) He`s 21.

911 OPERATOR: And what relation? He`s your boyfriend, you said?


GRACE: That baby boy had not been taken for a visit with a boyfriend, the child had been plastic-bagged and thrown away like trash. Now motive is uncovered. Tonight, we can confirm the alleged motive for murder is that this woman, Suzie Avila-Villa, wanted to conceal her underage sex with the bio dad of this child, just 14 years old.

To Matt Zarrell, our producer on the story. Have police been able to speak to the little boy who`s actually the biological father of the dead infant?

ZARRELL: Yes, they have, Nancy. They have spoken to him extensively. They learned that he had two encounters with her between October `08 and November `08, both occurred at her home, resulting in her pregnancy.

GRACE: Now, they say two sex encounters? I mean, come on. To Dr. Zhongxue Hua, Union County, New Jersey, medical examiner. What`s the likelihood a woman gets pregnant after just two sex encounters? I`ve got a feeling there was a whole lot more going on.

DR. ZHONGXUE HUA, MEDICAL EXAMINER, UNION COUNTY, NJ: It`s obvious. I mean, the answer is obvious. And I mean, you can have pregnancy (INAUDIBLE) two times of sex, but it`s very unlikely.

GRACE: Well, the likelihood, Doctor -- a comet could fall and hit me here in the studio. It`s just very apparent to me that this woman had an ongoing series of child molestations with the baby`s biological father, who is now 14 years old.

Matt Zarrell, if this had been an ongoing situation -- I mean, how long has the kid been 14? Was he 13 when she started molesting him?

ZARRELL: Well, that`s a good question. We don`t know what capacity (ph) this relationship was. Maybe she was his superior, and he felt the need -- we do not know what capacity was or how long it was going on, Nancy.

GRACE: To Jack Crumley with WLW. Jack, what does that tattoo say on her neck? Do you know?

CRUMLEY: You know, it`s difficult to make out. There`s also a tattoo that she has on her eye that appears to be a teardrop, which traditionally means either knowing someone in jail or someone passing away.

GRACE: Good to know. Jack Crumley, I want to talk about how she appeared in court. Was she questioned? Did she ever speak out? Did she show any emotion when the death of her baby boy was mentioned?

CRUMLEY: No. According to all the reports, she has not shown any emotion in court. She`s spoken through one of her two attorneys, at least as far as today`s criminal case -- or today`s court proceedings involving child custody.

GRACE: And back to Matt Zarrell, how did it become a crisis? Was the paternity about to be uncovered? I mean, why would she suddenly kill the baby? Who was to ever find out?

ZARRELL: Well, a paternity test was pending because the government wanted to find out who the father was so they could seek child support potentially from them. So the paternity test was pending in days, Nancy.

GRACE: Now, wait a minute. The government just doesn`t swoop into your home and try to arrange child support. She must have filed for child support against someone.

ZARRELL: You`re exactly right. She was getting financial assistance, and to get continued assistance, she would need to show who the father was.

GRACE: OK. To Atlanta defense attorney Penny Douglas Furr. Penny, so the state is alleging the heat was on. She -- idiot -- decides to file for public assistance, and they make her agree to a paternity test. So to avoid the authorities finding out she`s been molesting a 14-year-old little boy -- possibly 13 at the time -- she kills the baby. That`s the case as, the state is laying it out, Penny. What`s your defense?

PENNY DOUGLAS FURR, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Nancy, that in itself is insane because just because you killed the baby does not mean that you -- they can`t find out who the father was. They can take DNA from the baby whether he`s dead or alive. And it sounds totally ridiculous. First of all, she could have denied that she knew who the father was. She could say, I don`t know, I only know first names. She could be giving a list. They never would have found out who the father was. They may have pressured her. She could have easily said she didn`t know.

But for -- to make it clear in lay terms as to insanity, the difference would be that the person shows that she did know she did the wrong thing. Otherwise, she would not have made up all these stories and lied about it.

GRACE: Right. To Dr. Lillian Glass, psychologist and author of "I Know What You`re Thinking." You`re the expert, Lillian. Do you really think this woman was astute enough to come up with another story like, I don`t know who the father was? It was just so easy to blame somebody else.

LILLIAN GLASS, PSYCHOLOGIST: Oh, absolutely. And when you look at her, you know, the lack of emotion, it could be some sociopathy. Also, the teardrop -- that means somebody had died that she felt close to. So she has emotion.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So if you put two plus two together, what you get is, is that she`s trying to get rid of the baby so no one will discover that the father was under the age of 16.




911 OPERATOR: Is he the father of the child?

VILLA: Yes, he is.

911 OPERATOR: OK. Who has custody of the child?

VILLA: I do.

911 OPERATOR: OK. And your name, please?

VILLA: He wasn`t involved in any -- when I was pregnant, and now since the baby was born, he comes. He wanted to see the baby, so -- I didn`t want to let the baby go, but he told me he was going to take him around, and I haven`t seen him since.


GRACE: It`s painful to listen to this 911 call that we have obtained knowing that police have now charged the mother, Sunny (ph) Avila-Villa, with the murder of her 5-week-old baby boy. Motive? To conceal the identity of the father. He`s a 14-year-old boy himself.

To Jack Crumley with Newsradio 700 WLW. Describe the child`s injuries.

CRUMLEY: The child was found with a crushed skull and a broken arm. Upon questioning, Suzie Avila-Villa told police that she found the child in a bouncy seat. She said the child wouldn`t stop crying, and she reached to grab him, and the child was found not breathing a short time thereafter.

GRACE: You know, I`ve been so worried when I take the twins out of one of their shirts, I don`t even want to twist their arm backwards. I`ll inch the shirt up so their arm doesn`t get twisted one way or the other. I just wonder how she managed to break that baby`s arm.

Matt Zarrell, it`s my understanding that the DP -- death penalty -- is on the table.

ZARRELL: Yes, it is. There are two mitigating factors. One is that the child is under 13 years old. And the other, it was to avoid apprehension, detection and punishment of another crime, unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

GRACE: To Lou Palumbo, former Nassau County police investigator. He`s now a private investigator, and I can see why. Lou, thank you for being with us. The mother is charged with gross abuse of a corpse. Now, does that mean -- what does that mean to you? I don`t want to put words in your mouth.

LOU PALUMBO, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: What that constitutes is something she did with this child after the baby was deceased. And I -- you know, the synopsis on this whole case is this woman`s going to jail for the rest of her life, minimally. And as we do know, the death penalty is on the table right now for her, and I wouldn`t be surprised if that`s implemented.

GRACE: You know, Dr. Lillian Glass, you misstated something. You stated that her teardrop tattoo coming out of her eye indicates someone she knows has passed away. It also indicates very commonly that someone she knows is behind bars. Had you considered that, Lillian?

GLASS: Yes. Absolutely. That is true. It does mean both things, especially in gang -- gangland communication. Definitely.

GRACE: Mommy`s just looking better and better!

GLASS: Oh, yes.



UNIDENTIFIED 911 OPERATOR: 911. What`s your emergency?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just woke up and our back door was open and we can`t find our daughter.

MISTY CUMMINGS, RONALD CUMMING`S WIFE, LAST SEEN HALEIGH: I know I didn`t do anything to that little girl. I would never hurt her.

CRYSTAL SHEFFIELD, MOM OF MISSING 5-YR-OLD HALEIGH CUMMINGS: Everything she says is crazy. I mean, it`s like the cops say. They`re inconsistent.

RONALD CUMMINGS, FATHER OF MISSING 5-YR-OLD HALEIGH CUMMINGS: I don`t know anything about her flunking a polygraph. I know what`s been said about it, but I`m not a polygrapher myself. So I didn`t see any results. I didn`t get to -- you know, I was told by the polygrapher who did the polygraph that it`s not judged in percentages, that polygraph is either a failed or a pass, not in a percentage.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A recent polygraph, a voice analysis, and a hypnosis session indicated Misty Cummings knows more about what happened to her missing stepdaughter than she is saying. Her husband, Ronald Cummings, though, stands by her side.

R. CUMMINGS: My feelings are we need to find my daughter.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Do you think Misty holds some information that could help do that?

R. CUMMINGS: I don`t think that she holds any information that`s going to find Haleigh.

SHEFFIELD: We`ve known all along that her stories was full of inconsistencies.

NANCY GRACE, HOST: You don`t know where she was that day? You haven`t found out?

SHEFFIELD: She was at school that day.

GRACE: Until what time?

SHEFFIELD: She gets of the bus about 3:00 something is what I was told.

GRACE: She gets off the bus at 3:00 or she gets out of school at 3:00?

SHEFFIELD: She gets of the bus around 3:00. A little after 3:00.

GRACE: Do you know what time she would get out of school?

SHEFFIELD: No. I don`t live there.


SHEFFIELD: I don`t live there.

GRACE: You didn`t know what time your daughter got out of school?

SHEFFIELD: I`m assuming around 2:30. I don`t live there. I was never told those kind of things.


GRACE: Straight out to T.J. Hart, program and news director with WSKY 97.3 FM. T.J., thank you for being with us. It`s my understanding that it is now confirmed that there was a major blowup between new stepmother Misty Croslin and the biodad, Ronald Cummings, just before the child goes missing. What can you tell me?

T.J. HART, PROGRAM & NEWS DIR., WSKY 97.3FM (via phone): I can tell you that there was indeed that big disagreement but it wasn`t over a weekend of partying. It was Misty wanting to baby-sit some other children but not certain just who those other children were.

Now, FDLE has not released the phone records, but highly credible sources close to the investigation and Tim Miller both tell me that Ronald had that argument over the phone with Misty while he was at work. Phone pings, et cetera, all point to this at around 8:30.

Misty`s phone is then turned off at that point until about 3:15 a.m. Those same sources say Ron tried several times during the night to call and text Misty to no avail. Tim Miller and -- said that Ronald told the same story to him in Attorney Mark Nejame`s office just a few weeks ago.

GRACE: OK. T.J., I hate to put you on the spot here, but are you married?

HART: Yes, I am.

GRACE: OK. So you want to tell me that you really buy the story that your wife is gone on a binge, absent, bye-bye, AWOL, for three days and that`s not what the fight was about? You really are telling me that with a straight face?

HART: I`m telling you with a straight face that that`s what my sources tell me. But as a man that would factor into any argument I probably.

GRACE: As a man? Forget that. As a person.

HART: As a spouse. As a spouse that would factor into any argument. It would accelerate it probably.

GRACE: You know I like the way you put that icing on the cake. It would factor into the argument. That`s a very nice way of putting it, T.J. Hart, joining us from WSKY.

I want to go to Terry Shoemaker, the attorney for bio father Ronald Cummings. I want to clear something up about the timeline. A lot of people want to know where was Ronald Cummings. Where was he at the time she went missing?

Terry, as best you can tell me -- Terry Shoemaker, attorney, joining me from Jacksonville, Florida. What time did he pick up -- Ronald pick up Haleigh from school, from the bus stop that day?

TERRY SHOEMAKER, ATTORNEY FOR RONALD CUMMINGS: Ronald picked up Haleigh at approximately 3:30. It just depends on.


SHOEMAKER: You know, in talking with him it would depend how fast the bus got there.

GRACE: All right. Got it.

SHOEMAKER: But right around 3:30.

GRACE: 3:30. Terry, how far away was his place of employment?

SHOEMAKER: On that particular evening he told me it took him exactly, based on what, you know, the records are 19 minutes for him to get to work that day.

GRACE: OK. When he picked her up at around 3:30, where did he take her?

SHOEMAKER: He took her home, which is less than a mile away from the bus stop.

GRACE: OK. And what time did he have to be at work?

SHOEMAKER: He didn`t really start work until 5:00. However, he would always get there, he said, approximately 30 minutes to 45 minutes earlier.


SHOEMAKER: Depending on when he left.

GRACE: So he`d get there 45 minutes beforehand. So he picks her up around 3:30, takes her home then drives 20 minutes to work. And we know he punched in on time at work. Yes/no?

SHOEMAKER: Yes, he did. Absolutely.

GRACE: OK. That is the alibi for Ronald Cummings. He was observed picking her up between 3:30 and 4:00. He dropped her off and was on time for work. If not 45 minutes early.

I want to go to a special guest joining us tonight. Teresa Neves. This is Haleigh`s paternal grandmother speaking out exclusively since the - - for the first time since it`s been uncovered that her daughter-in-law flunked, quote, "miserably," a polygraph.

Teresa, thank you for being with us again. Miss Neves, is it true that family and friends have encouraged Misty Croslin to go under hypnosis to help her remember anything about that night she may be even subconsciously suppressing?


GRACE: Who has asked her to go under hypnosis?

NEVES: I have spoke with her personally. I don`t know, actually. I know she had spoken with a friend of Ronald`s. But I don`t know of anyone else who has spoken with her -- you know, I don`t personally know that. But I did speak with her because I feel like if she knows something I don`t think she`s purposely hiding it.

I believe it`s something that she doesn`t remember, something in her subconscious, and whatever it is we want it known.

GRACE: Well, when they tried to.

NEVER: We want Haleigh to come home.

GRACE: Teresa, when they tried to get her to go under hypnosis before, she would not submit to it. She would not go along with it. Why?

NEVER: I do believe that she did her best. I believe there were a lot of people there. I believe there was a lot of pressure there. We were forced to stay away from the house. They would not let us anywhere near the house while this was going on. I know that -- they had several people there.

I really don`t know what happened during the hypnosis. I had hoped for a more successful outcome, but.

GRACE: Miss Neves, what do you make of her flunking the private poly?

NEVER: I don`t honestly know what to tell you about that, Miss Nancy. I know what I was told, you know. I know what she was told. It was something that we had hoped would help. It seemed like an awfully long time for her to be there.

I just -- you know, unless -- I don`t want to say anything that is wrong. And I don`t know what went on. You know? I wish I did.

GRACE: Let me go to Dan Sosnowski. He`s the president of the American Polygraph Association and he confirms for us this evening that Misty Croslin, the new stepmother`s polygraph, results are accurate. That she flunked, quote, "miserably."

How can you confirm that, sir?

DAN SOSNOWSKI, PRESIDENT, AMERICAN POLYGRAPH ASSOC.; CONFIRMS MISTY`S POLY IS ACCURATE (via phone): Well, good evening. What we do when a polygraph examination is administered, they must follow certain proper protocol that`s been taught in a basic polygraph school.

There are several different techniques that are taught. These techniques have been researched, have been validated. We know the accuracy rate somewhere could be 85 to 95 percent as long as the examiner is doing his job as he`s taught.

And just like for a doctor who sends an EKG somewhere else. Once he obtained that physiological data, he could send it to another doctor somewhere else in the world. Well, same thing with polygraphs. When we see the tracings, the physiological tracings of another examiner who`s trained and understands that technique.



GRACE: You either fail it or you pass it. Well, according to these reports, she flunked it.

R. CUMMINGS: Well, until I see more physical proof of what`s going on, Miss Nancy, there`s -- my concerns are still on keeping Haleigh`s face on the TV and being sure that she is found.

SHEFFIELD: I thought all along that she had something to do with it.

M. CUMMINGS: When I showed up there, they told me I was taking a polygraph. I was like, OK.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you at any point say I don`t want to do this?



M. CUMMINGS: Because I thought I was helping.


GRACE: Back to Susan Moss, family law attorney out of New York. Don`t you find it extremely coincidental that on the night, the very evening little Haleigh goes missing, allegedly snaps out of her own bed, there`s a major blowup between bio dad and new stepmom Misty Croslin.

And then during the time, at the exact time, when Haleigh is either murdered or kidnapped, Misty Croslin shuts off her cell phone and won`t answer the phone. Nobody can reach her for those hours.

SUSAN MOSS, FAMILY LAW ATTORNEY & CHILD ADVOCATE: Absolutely. It`s totally ridiculous. There is more to the story than we are being told. The fact that she, on the phone with the cop, she claims to be the child`s mother, there`s more going on here.

GRACE: John Burris?

JOHN BURRIS, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I would agree with that, too. I mean I`d be very suspicious about this telephone being cut off after this argument. When you look at facts like that, then you want to really know why don`t you tell us more about why your phone`s off?

GRACE: I agree, John, because when your husband is trying to reach you or your soon-to-be husband after a major blowup, and it coincidentally at the time the child goes missing? What about it, Penny Douglass Furr?

PENNY DOUGLASS FURR, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Why doesn`t she take another polygraph? If she`s saying there`s something wrong with that polygraph, she can take another polygraph.

GRACE: It will be her third. Why strike out totally? Why not just go down with two strikes? Why have your third strike and be called out?

DOUGLASS FURR: If she`s telling the truth and she`s nothing to hide, then she can go through this all over again with the person of her selection and then do it again if she`s not hiding anything.

GRACE: Mm-hmm. I think she`s probably too afraid to take another poly at this point. But very quickly, I want to tell you about a case out of North Carolina. Take a listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have found what looks like about a 2-year-old little girl wandering around and nobody here knows who she belongs to. She was in the road when I found her.

Where`s your mommy at?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What happened to you mommy?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A motorist made that call from Massey Road just outside Mount Airy after he found the toddler walking in traffic.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A Charlotte mom is arrested after police say her 2-year-old girl was found wandering a busy road while mommy was at the bar drinking.

911 OPERATOR: Is the child OK?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She`s fine but I just don`t know who she belongs to. I mean, I found her in the middle of the road in a disposable diaper, and that`s it. No shoes, no other clothes, carrying a baby doll.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anybody that`s got children give you cold chills to think about what could have happened there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police scoured the area.


GRACE: A little baby just 2 years old walking in nothing but a diaper, no pants, no shirt, no shoes, down the central lane of a busy, winding highway. Where`s mommy? It`s 4:30 in the afternoon, and she`s at the local bar with a snoot full.

Straight out to Mondee Tilley with the "Mount Airy News." Mondee, I`m stunned. What do we know happened? And I haven`t -- I`m not letting up on dad, but I know that that day mom had supervision of the baby.

MONDEE TILLEY, REPORTER, MOUNT AIRY NEWS (via phone): Yes, ma`am, that`s correct. She had been up visiting with her parents who live up here in Mount Airy. She`s from the Charlotte area. And according to our sheriff here locally, she had come and gone throughout the afternoon and the grandparents were not, you know, notified that they were to watch the child and she came home, didn`t see the child, and then apparently left and saw that -- you know, she had some free time to kill and went to the bar.

GRACE: Free time to kill. That`s a good way to put it, Mondee Tilley joining us from "Mount Airy News." Apparently she thought she had time to kill.

Special guest joining us tonight from Dobson, North Carolina, Sheriff Graham Atkinson with the Surry County Sheriff`s Office. Sheriff, thank you for being with us. Who figure out.


GRACE: Nice to have you, Sheriff. Sheriff, who figured out that they should look at the Vanishing Point, the local bar, for mommy?

ATKINSON: Well, the information that was gathered by investigators is places she might be located. In fact, I think that the mother`s parents gave them the information that they should check there. And we contacted the Mount Airy Police Department and they went out and checked for us.

GRACE: So they come home, the grandparents come home, there`s no mommy, there`s no baby. You find out where the baby lives, and the grandparents automatically direct you to the bar?

ATKINSON: Yes. They gave us several location that`s we could check. One of the places was the Vanishing Point, and that`s where she was located.

GRACE: So everybody knew where to look. OK. Good to know.

Sheriff, what is she charged with tonight?

ATKINSON: She was charged with driving while impaired because when she showed back up at the scene she was -- had been drinking when she got back and was over the legal limit of alcohol in her system.

GRACE: What was her blood alcohol?


GRACE: So she was just over the limit by that time. Who knows what she was a couple of hours earlier.

Sheriff, where is the baby tonight?

ATKINSON: The baby was actually released by our Department of Social Services into the custody of the father, who lives in Mecklenburg County.

GRACE: You know, Sheriff, just thinking about it, the baby wandering down the center lane like that -- with me is Sheriff Graham Atkinson.

To Rupa Mikkilineni, our producer on the story. Am I correct the little girl had on nothing but a disposable diaper? No shoes, pants, shirt, and she was clutching her baby doll?

RUPA MIKKILINENI, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: That`s right, Nancy. She was only wearing a disposable diaper carrying a baby doll and a little toy pocketbook, wandering down this rural street. She could have been hurt very badly.

GRACE: All I can say is Sheriff Graham is a lot more levelheaded about this than this mommy. But this mommy says throw the book.

As we go to break, happy birthday. Happy 18th birthday to two Georgia friends of the show twins, Nick and Zach. Nick loves weightlifting, and he has just been named the manager of the high school wrestling team. He`s on the left. Zach loves baseball, fishing. He`s a baseball superstar.

Happy birthday to very handsome Nick and Zach.

And happy 80th to North Carolina friend of the show, Mary. She`s a mother of two. Eight grandchildren, 20 grandchildren, and three great, greats. She still manages to never miss a show.

Happy birthday, Miss Mary.

And now, "CNN HEROES."


ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Heroes.

BUDI SOEHARDI, CHAMPIONING CHILDREN: There was riots, buildings being burned, people just trying to save their lives. The children are supposed to have proper upbringing, and what they were having there was far from being normal.

This is so devastating to me and my family. That`s why we committed to go and to help.

My name is Budi Soehardi. I`m a pilot for Singapore Airlines. I supported an orphanage to help the children in West Timor. When we started, we only had four children, and we found out that even more needed help badly, so we decided to build our own orphanage building.

Right from the beginning we give them vaccination, clothing, food. But we cannot give them anything more valuable than a proper education.

GERSON, STUDENT (Through translator): My first thought before when my parents die I couldn`t go to school. For me Budi is an angel. I am now in medical school.

SOEHARDI: Very, very good. Right.

We are able to provide and to teach them just be who you are, help others, and do it from your heart.



GRACE: What a week in America`s courtrooms. Take a look at the stories and more important, the people who touched our lives.


GRACE: Ronald, what do you make of Misty flunking the polygraph?

R. CUMMINGS: Um, I don`t know anything about her flunking a polygraph.

GRACE: She flunked it. I mean, royally, flunked and that`s got to concern you.

SHEFFIELD: Well, I thought al along that she had something to do with it and now this kind of just proves it. I mean.

GRACE: But why do you say you thought all along that?

SHEFFIELD: She`s the last one to see our daughter and her -- her stories just don`t add up. Everything she says is crazy.

GRACE: No one saw little Hasanni, a 5-year-old boy afflicted with cerebral palsy, for four days before daddy reports he`s been mysteriously kidnapped in a busy suburban shopping center.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A young Ohio mom smashes head-on into a light pole in this Walgreens parking lot. But she doesn`t call the cops or stop to check the damage. She just speeds away.

GRACE: Then tries to hijack a neighbor`s car to get away from police. And oops, she forgot one thing. Ruh-roh, the baby she left behind to avoid a drunk driving charge.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Attacked at Wal-Mart.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The 61-year-old Georgia man is facing child cruelty charges for slapping a woman`s fussy 2-year-old.

GRACE: Everyone agrees a knuckle sandwich, no mayo, give him a little of his own medicine.


GRACE: Let`s stop and remember Army Specialist Ryan Carlock, 25, Macomb, Illinois, killed Iraq. Lost his life just days after making plans with family for returning home. The main street next to his unit camp in Iraq named in his honor.

Loved country, but most of all being a husband and father. Dreamed of college. Leaves behind parents Randy and Kate, widow Heather and two little girl, Sierra and Lianna.

Ryan Carlock, American hero.

Thanks to our guests, but especially you for being with us, and a special good night from the New York control room.

Good night, Liz. Good night, everybody!

Everyone, today is the twins` 22-month birthday. Thank you to Linda from Menlow for this card and this picture of you as a little girl.

Everybody, I`ll see you tomorrow night at 8::00 sharp Eastern and until then, good night, friend.