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Woman Gravely Injured by Rock Dropped From Overpass
Aired July 16, 2014 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JEAN CASAREZ, GUEST HOST: We begin tonight with breaking news. In a heart-breaking tragedy, a beloved teacher, breast cancer survivor and
mother of four goes on an interstate road trip for a summer vacation with the family. Out of nowhere, the front windshield is shattered by an eight-
pound rock the size of a soccer ball. Sharon Budd is hit directly in the face and her head. She`s now battling for her life with threatening brain
injuries and disfigurement. Tonight, we are learning this is no accident. Two teens have been arrested, and her family is asking they be prosecuted
to the fullest extent of the law.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sharon Budd was on Interstate 80 when police say two boys threw a rock from an overpass.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The rock hit her straight on in her face.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Emergency surgery on her brain, and she lost an eye.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They need to be brought to justice.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: And to Kensington, Pennsylvania. A college co-ed graduates from the Art Institute fashion marketing program. She`s set to start a
brand-new job. She has her whole life ahead of her. But her dreams are cut short when she is found brutally murdered, stuffed into a duffel bag.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Body stuffed into a duffel bag.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Strangulation and blunt force trauma.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The killer torched her car, then left her body on this Kensington lot, hands tied, trash bags covering her head and feet.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: The BTK killer, the family man who murders at least 10 victims, taunting police for 30 years while hiding in plain sight.
Tonight, we take a look at what it was like living next door to a serial killer, the killer next door.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And went ahead and tied her up, and then put a bag over her head and strangled her.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He takes her nude body in the church and poses her in various bondage positions.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She screamed and jumped on the bed and strangled her manually.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: You were actually a serial killer`s back-door neighbor.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I went over and strangled Mrs. O`Hara (ph). I thought she was down.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Personality would just change.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And I strangled Josephine (ph), and then I killed her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: And we go to Valhalla. Visit after visit to the hospital turns into heartbreak for a grieving mother when her 5-year-old son dies.
She even chronicles it all on social media. Then in a stunning twist, when the mother is accused of injecting a lethal dose of salt into her son`s
feeding tube. Tonight, the case heads back to court, but the mother is a no-show.
Good evening. I`m Jean Casarez, in for Nancy Grace. Thank you so much for joining us tonight.
It could happen to anyone, a family road trip turns tragic. They are traveling down the interstate for a summer vacation when the front
windshield is hit by an eight-pound rock. And tonight, police say this is no accident.
Out to Michael Board, reporter with WOAI news radio. What happened?
MICHAEL BOARD, WOAI: This is a family who was driving down Interstate 80 in Pennsylvania, and from out of nowhere, a rock came falling out of the
The investigators say the rock was eight pounds, so I went out to a construction site next to our station, and I found a rock that`s eight
pounds big. This is bigger than my head. I can barely hold this up for very long.
This fell from two stories high, an overpass, fell right down onto the windshield of a Nissan SUV, hitting the face of a woman who was riding in
the passenger seat. The investigators who are looking into this, the medical teams, say there were so many fractures that this rock caused, they
stopped counting. There were so many fractures, they couldn`t -- they stopped counting, there are so many that this rock did.
CASAREZ: And Michael Board, this is a teacher, this is a breast cancer survivor on a summer vacation with her family. And we have
interstates all over this country. This is Interstate 80 where this happened, and that goes coast to coast.
Tell me more, though, Clark Goldband. What time of night was it? How did it happen? And just some particulars to this.
CLARK GOLDBAND, NANCY GRACE PRODUCER: All right, Jean. Let`s go from your first question, and I`ll continue from there. Happened right before
midnight. And perhaps most disturbing, the 19-year-old daughter -- they`re on a family vacation -- is driving, like so many of us this time of year,
She hears what`s only termed as an explosion, this eight-pound rock hovering (ph) down from over 20 feet in the air, smashing her mom in the
face. Some disturbing details on what happens to Mom, Jean, so disturbing, it`s not even something we can report at the family hour, the type and
extent of the damage that was done to this mother and teacher.
Jean, what were your other questions?
CASAREZ: You know, I`m going to switch right now because we have got a special guest and joining us, and it takes so much courage for him to
join us tonight. But this is Randy Budd. This is Sharon Budd`s husband, the father a the 19-year-old daughter that was driving the car.
Mr. Budd, your wife is in the hospital. What is her condition tonight as we speak?
RANDY BUDD, HUSBAND (via telephone): Well, thank you for having me on the show. First of all, the -- my wife is -- they don`t know. The brain
has not stopped swelling.
Here`s what we do know, is that she`s been heavily sedated. She`s got -- upon command she potentially can move her fingers and toes. We
obviously have not been able to talk with her.
What we know is that she has definitely lost her right eye. The left eye is definitely in question. Her face -- when that rock hit her, it hit
her right head-on, right through that windshield, busted her top portion of her face backwards and split it out. They are doing a surgery, extensive
all-day surgery tomorrow to try to put her face back together.
No one knows how she`s going to come out of this, if she comes out of it, and if she`ll ever know us or -- or anybody. But we have hope. She`s
a strong lady. We have hope that -- she has had some reaction. She`s in critical care, and she has been in critical care ever since she`s went to
Geisinger. So she`s -- she`s not in good shape. Her life has changed forever.
She was so impactful with her 7th grade students. They absolutely love her. She saved a child`s life in the classroom. She`s been
recognized over and over. And so it`s not just our family, but it`s all these kids that are going to be denied the Sharon Budd teaching. She`s
taken introverts and made them great kids, and it`s all for just a senseless, violent act.
CASAREZ: And we are going to get into that. But first, Mr. Budd, I want everyone to understand that you and your family were on a summer
vacation. You were driving on Interstate 80 from Ohio to the New York area, New York City. Everybody wants to come to New York City. And you
were traveling through Pennsylvania on Interstate 80.
You were in the back seat, and your daughter was driving. Can you just describe for us what you heard, what you felt, as this boulder just
was thrown at you from an overpass?
BUDD: Yes. First, you know, there`s some guilt there because I always drive, but I had a long work week, and I drove about the first 250
miles and was getting a little tired, and that`s not safe. And Kaylee -- Kaylee`s a trooper. She said, Dad, let me take the wheel for an hour, go
in the back seat and I`ll take over, and then you can drive us into New York.
So I was sitting in the back seat. And the one thing that just happened right before it happened -- my son is being deployed to
Afghanistan. And my wife on a whim called him, and he typically doesn`t answer because they`re in heavy training, but he answered the phone and we
had him on speakerphone.
And anyway, and my wife was crying of joy to talk with him. And then she said, Luke, you know, can you take a selfie? And anyway, he took a
selfie reluctantly, but he did, and he sent it to his mom. And she showed it to me. And I was in the back seat, and she was crying. And I was
rubbing her shoulders. And then he kicked back another e-mail that said, Mom, I miss you.
And I was rubbing her shoulders and I just sat back. And it was -- we were all awake, and all of a sudden -- if somebody would have put a grenade
in that car, that`s what it sounded like. It just was an explosion. And none of us -- you know, we didn`t know what had happened. I looked up and
just saw a big, big hole in the windshield.
I still didn`t know -- my daughter started screaming. She goes, Dad, what should I do? What happened? And I said -- and so I talked -- I
talked to her over to the side of the highway. We came to a stop. She turned the lights on and saw her mom`s head sideways, and saw the most
gruesome thing that probably anybody could ever see, with her head split open, with her face and her skull and brains visible.
Kaylee screamed and ran from the car. I immediately ran around to the car to see what she saw. And oh, my God, it was gruesome. And I called
911 immediately. Kaylee -- she`s so strong. She came right back in. So I was on the passenger side. Kaylee climbed in in the driver`s side, and we
just held her hand.
And we thought at the time she was just bleeding out. She -- there was blood coming out of her nose, her mouth, her brain. And then she came
to, and when I mean came to, she started moving. And she was just moving all over the place and trying to grab at her face. She -- I don`t know if
she remembers it. And we were trying to keep her hands down so she didn`t injure it more.
And then she started -- she started gurgling in her own blood. And we just kept waiting and waiting for the ambulance. And the only way she
could breathe was through her brain! She would breathe heavy, and it would come out of her brain, and it was -- oh, my God, it was terrible!
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Threw a rock from an overpass.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: About an eight-inch boulder came right through the windshield, hitting Sharon square in the face.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I saw her face, and it was bad.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`ve never seen anything like it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s still in critical condition.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: As we have been telling you tonight, Sharon Budd, who is a middle school teacher out of Ohio, is clinging to life tonight. She was on
a family vacation. They were driving at night. They went under an overpass, and an eight-pound rock, or boulder, as the school district is
describing it, came straight through the front windshield, into her head and her skull.
Joining us tonight is Randy Budd, the husband of Sharon Budd. But I want to go to Dr. Joyce Carter -- Joye Carter, the chief forensic
pathologist of Marion County, Indiana. This was an eight-pound rock, but it was thrown at about 22 to 25 feet from above. With the force of
gravity, that`s not eight pounds, correct, that went into her face and head?
DR. JOYE M. CARTER, FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST (via telephone): That`s correct. This is a law of physics. This object becomes heavier with the
speed and the energy that it takes. You imagine a bullet being fired from a gun. It`s that energy that causes the damage. You have this huge area
of energy and the devastating injuries that it produces to this woman`s head. This is absolutely a devastating injury, as we`ve heard the husband
CASAREZ: Doctor, I also want to ask you, once they did emergency procedures, they called in specialists, and it was a very risky thing to
do, but they had to allow the brain to swell, so they took off the front part of her skull. Can you just explain what that is and why that`s done?
CARTER: Well, they`re hoping to prevent any further brain damage. The brain`s reaction to trauma, any insult, is to swell. And the adult
brain has very little room to swell within the skull, so they have to give it some room. So they do take off the skull to allow the brain to swell
without any further injury. And they`re hoping to alleviate any further brain damage that that swelling could cause.
CASAREZ: Now, two teenagers at this point have been arrested, 18- year-old Brett Lahr and 17-year-old Dylan Lahr. And they are both being charged as adults, aggravated assault, conspiracy to commit aggravated
assault, three counts of propelling a missile into an oncoming vehicle. It goes on from there.
But joining us tonight is their attorney, Brian Manchester, who is joining us out of Bellfont (ph), Pennsylvania, central Pennsylvania. Thank
you, sir, for joining us.
BRIAN MANCHESTER, ATTORNEY FOR ACCUSED (via telephone): Well, thank you for having me on.
CASAREZ: I think the first question that people want to know is, did your clients participate or throw an eight-pound boulder off of an
MANCHESTER: Absolutely not. They did not do anything of (INAUDIBLE) nature to cause this woman`s injury.
CASAREZ: Well, somebody did.
MANCHESTER: There were several people there (INAUDIBLE) not my clients, ma`am.
CASAREZ: So were your clients there? Did they -- were they in the car? Because what we`re hearing is that the way that your clients were
arrested was that there was at least one car that kept driving by and looking at not only the initial car with Ms. Budd in it, pulled over, but
then the officers coming, the emergency vehicles coming, and they kept coming and looking.
MANCHESTER: Yes, that`s what the police are stating, that the gentlemen along with two other young gentlemen were driving by and were in
the car together. If you also read the complaint, when it comes to Brent Lahr, the only thing that the witnesses state in relation to him is he was
in the car. Two other -- the same two witnesses who gave statements to the police say that Dylan threw a rock, but one of the gentlemen said he threw
a rock and missed the car, but Dylan`s rock was the one that hit the car. So the credibility of that individual is highly suspect.
CASAREZ: Well, they were awful close together. And there are many types of deadly weapons, and this was a deadly weapon. This woman is
clinging to life at this point. She is alive. What did happen?
MANCHESTER: What did happen? This woman was injured by a rock that came through a windshield, and they`re alleging that both of my clients
committed this act (INAUDIBLE)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sharon Budd fighting for life after two kids pushed an eight-inch boulder from an overpass through the car window, Budd
in the passenger seat, her face smashed. She lost an eye.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On the phone with his mom just minutes before she was hit.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I said, I miss you, Mama. And that was the last thing I said to her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: I want to go straight out to Michael Board from WOAI radio. Michael, hold up so everybody can see this eight-pound boulder that you
were able to find and get. And that`s heavy as you just hold it right there, but if it`s plummeted 22 to 25 feet from an overpass, the velocity
would have to be amazing, and that is why Mrs. Budd is clinging to life, a middle school teacher.
I want to go out to our prosecutor, Amanda Manukian, who is a former prosecutor in Los Angeles. How would you charge this? And why is this not
AMANDA MANUKIAN, FORMER PROSECUTOR: The problem is going to be for an attempted murder charge, is to show that the intent of the individuals
charged was to kill.
CASAREZ: They have second-degree murder in Pennsylvania.
MANUKIAN: That is correct. And the evidence in this case right now may not support an attempted murder charge because we`re not sure what the
evidence is. However, the egregious nature of the crime, the senselessness of the act and the disregard of human life, and the common knowledge that
you throw an eight-pound rock on a freeway overpass is going to cause significant injury, if not death, may support that down the road.
CASAREZ: And you know, Amanda...
CASAREZ: Amanda, I want to tell you that this is not the first rock that was thrown that evening. This is a subsequent rock that was thrown at
Back to Randy Budd, who is joining us tonight, and his wife, Sharon Budd, is in critical condition at Geisinger Hospital in Pennsylvania. I
just want us to know a little bit about your wife. She`s a fighter. She is a survivor. This is not the first crisis she has gone through. Tell us
BUDD: That`s right. She -- Sharon is remarkable. She had very aggressive, very aggressive cancer that -- breast cancer, that also
attacked her lymph nodes when she was 39. And they put up the very highest dosages of chemotherapy that is allowed. And I won`t get into all the
details, but it was -- I mean, to survive that is unbelievable, and she...
CASAREZ: And the military -- sir, the military is allowing your son to stay here in the United States and not go to Afghanistan as he`s
supposed to, right?
BUDD: Well, that`s not all the way true. He is going to go to Afghanistan. Luckily, the whole deployment got delayed until the 24th, so
he`s allowed to be here until the 21st, and then he`s got to go to Afghanistan.
CASAREZ: All right. We will keep in touch with you, sir. And we wish you the best, especially tomorrow for this critical surgery.
BUDD: OK. Thank you.
CASAREZ: We turn now to the brutal murder of a college graduate found dead inside a duffel bag.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was very special.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The 23-year-old victim was beaten and strangled to death.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was a recent graduate of the Art Institute of Philadelphia looking for a new place to live when she was attacked.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Her hands and legs were bound with duct tape and stuffed into a duffel bag.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And has ruled this a homicide.
CASAREZ: Out to Rich Zeoli, host of the Rich Zeoli show on WPHT. What happened, Rich?
ZEOLI: This is a horrific incident. This woman was bound and gagged, left in a duffel bag in an area of the city we call the Badlands,
Kensington, awful part of the city. And the guy who did it drove her car to south Philadelphia, where he left her car, set it on fire, and then
disappeared. The good news, Nancy, is that as of right now, they are in this program. We can tell you that the police arrested someone, and that
person who my sources in Philadelphia police has pled guilty to this.
CASAREZ: Rich, what we understand is that she was not only tied at her hands, her wrists and her ankles, but describe the plastic bag, the
trash bag, the blanket. I mean, a lot of care and attention was used on her body.
ZEOLI: Yes. It was brutal. It really was. This is a guy who beat her viciously, savagely beat her. And he bound her, gagged her, put her
into a duffel bag. I mean, imagine the size of a duffel bag and shoving a woman into that, and then just discarded her on the street, literally like
garbage. He literally put the duffel bag containing this beautiful young woman on the street, where someone going by, looking through garbage,
probably a homeless person or somebody else, found her because he was going through the garbage. That`s how heinous and such an absolute disregard for
human life this guy showed.
CASAREZ: And that person, Rich, is a hero. Because someone is going through the garbage. They think, wow, here`s a duffel bag. Something is
in it. They open it and find the body. They call 911. Justin Freiman, we want to talk about this beautiful woman, Laura. She just graduated from
the Fashion Institute in fashion marketing. Her whole life was before her, Justin.
FREIMAN: That`s right. Her whole life was before her. She was looking for a new place to live. She was about to start a new job. She
was apparently a well liked person who enjoyed helping others.
CASAREZ: Justin, I want to ask you about her car. We can picture where she was found, but her car -- explain where her car was found and in
FREIMAN: Her car was actually found on the other side of town still on fire, and nearby they did find a gasoline container that was probably
used to douse the car and light it up.
CASAREZ: And we do know that the autopsy has shown that there was no sign of sexual assault at all. She was suffocated and blunt force trauma
was the cause of death. Out to Yale Galanter, former attorney for OJ Simpson, joining us tonight from Miami, Florida. What do you think that
the motive was to do something like this to somebody?
GALANTER: You know, Jean, it`s hard to tell. Some of the reports are they lived in the same apartment complex. Maybe he had a crush on her.
Maybe he was, you know, a rejected guy. At this point, we don`t know. But it is very good news that the police have him. He appears to have
confessed and maybe even pled guilty. That`s very good news for the family to close this case out very quickly.
CASAREZ: Peter Odom, defense attorney joining us out of Georgia. This is Pennsylvania. It`s a death penalty case, potentially death
penalty. When you look at the facts of this, just the taking the time to cover up the body and put it in the duffel bag, and then to try to get rid
of any evidence by burning the car.
ODOM: Right. Once you bring a death penalty case, the effort for the defense is not necessarily to show that he`s innocent or to show that
somebody else did it or show it was self-defense, but to save his life. That`s going to be the focus. Once they present sufficient evidence that
it was actually he, and of course there`s a confession here, he that put her in that duffel bag, his focus has to be on being alive at the end of
CASAREZ: Right. Right. Dr. Joye Carter, chief forensic pathologist, joining us out of Marion County, Indiana, they do not know at this point
where she was killed. So the car has been burned. Will there be forensic evidence they can find to see if that is the third crime scene? We have
got two crime scenes so far. One where the body was found and one where the car was found, but they need to know where she was killed.
CARTER: I think they`re going to very closely examine the entire interior aspect of the car, including the trunk for any evidence. They
want to go back to her residence, looking for evidence, and they`re going to very closely look at the scene where the body was found. It`s a fairly
fresh scene so the chances of finding evidence would be very good for the crime scene investigators. They`re going to be all over this.
CASAREZ: To psychologist Caryn Stark, why does someone put the trash bag over the head, take the blanket and wrap the body, and then put it all
in a duffel bag? And by the way, as I was thinking about this case, because she was moving out of one apartment, about to move into another
apartment, she had all of her belongings with her in the car, he probably used her blanket and her duffel bag to do all of this. Why? What mental
state does this?
STARK: It`s not somebody who is actually caring about the person that he`s doing this to, Jean. I mean, this is an intimate scene where he`s
hurting her, abusing her, strangling her, putting this over her head, so he`s just treating her like she`s a piece of meat and doesn`t care, and
that`s really all the characteristics of someone who is a murderer, an anti-social personality. No true feelings.
CASAREZ: And the question still is why because there is no evidence of sexual assault. They don`t see that any credit cards were used or tried
to be used. There had to have been a motive here. Thank you, Dr. Caryn. Coming up next, the killer next door. Ten murders committed by a family
man hiding in plain sight. An inside look at what it is like to live next to the BTK serial killer.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One would think someone that was so intense in enforcing the law would not be one that would break the law.
DENNIS RADER, BTK: I had never strangled anyone before, so I really didn`t know how much pressure you had to put on a person or how long it
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: I remember when I was in the courtroom for the sentencing hearing of the BTK killer in Kansas. It`s something I will never, ever
forget. And it was bind, torture and kill. That`s why he called himself BTK. Dennis Rader, the family man who viciously murdered at least ten
victims, taunting police by 30 years by sending cryptic messages to news stations while hiding in plain sight, but what was it like living next door
to the BTK killer? Tonight, our special look at the killer next door.
RADER: I went ahead and tied her up and put a bag over her head and strangled her.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The killer calls himself BTK, which stands for bind them, torture them, kill them. A pattern he`s followed with most of
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: BTK stands for bind, torture, and kill.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I answered the door. Asked me were my parents home? I told them my mom is sick in bed, so he proceeded to come on in,
and started pulling down the blinds and turned off the TV and pulled out a gun. I looked over at the door a crack, and seen my mom being stripped,
taped, plastic bag over her head, rope tied around her neck.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The people who are most able to get away with these crimes for years are the ones that look beyond suspicion, who blend
RADER: And then I killed her.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: With me now is a special guest. Donna Berry. Donna is actually the neighbor of the BTK serial killer, Dennis Rader. You
knew BTK as we call him, Dennis Rader, bind, torture, kill, since you were 4 years old. You grew up with his children. Your backyard backs up to the
Raders. What did you observe during those years when you were actually a serial killer`s next door neighbor?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A family man when he was with his wife and children. He was an all around great guy, great personality. Easy to get
along with. As soon as he put on that compliance uniform, it was like his personality would just change.
GRACE: You know, I believe that he committed a lot of murders in his compliance uniform.
RADER: You will find a homicide at 843 South Pershing, Nancy Fox.
Nancy Fox, she was a wonderful person. I did track her just like a predator. She was a wonderful young lady. Well organized. Hard worker.
GRACE: What do you think about that? Having a serial killer next door?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s scary, because Park City has always been known for being a very quiet town. Everybody knew everybody. You could
leave your doors unlocked at night and not have to worry, and then you find out something like this that gives the whole shock and awe factor.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want him to suffer as much as he made his victims suffer. But then when I think about that, in his sick perverted
way, he would probably find that as some kind of pleasure or reward.
GRACE: Is it true that your friend saw BTK pull a .12 gauge on an animal, I think it was a kitten?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. At the city pool, a bunch of kids playing at the park leaving the pool saw him pull out a shotgun and shoot and
literally blew up the kitty.
GRACE: I remember when I first learned about BTK, I actually verbalized, I wonder if he ever attacked animals. Then when I found out he
was a dog catcher, you are really putting the pieces of the puzzle together for me.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He killed dogs and cats in that setting, but he had never been able to take a human being into a barn and either take
photographs or do whatever he wanted to do. He puts the plastic over the windows so that nobody can see him. He tacks it up. He has a camera with
him, and he takes her nude body in the church and poses her in various bondage positions.
RADER: She screamed and jumped on the bed and strangled her manually.
GRACE: I know his home has been torn down. Why was it torn down and how did that make you feel?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s sad because I knew his kids. I knew his wife.
GRACE: Is it something you carry with you, because in my line of business, I`m always suspicious. I am on guard. I`m protective of my
family, my children, overly protective. I always wonder and now I`ve got you, does it make you look at the world a different way to find out that
someone you thought you knew so well could carry out heinous, horrible acts on other people?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You just don`t expect it.
RADER: First of all, Mr. Otero was strangled. Bag over his head and strangled. I thought he was going down. I went over and strangled Mrs.
Otero. I thought she was down. Then I strangled Josephine and she was down.
GRACE: It gives you a whole new perspective on the world, that it can be anybody at any time.
RADER: You know, she was pretty upset. What`s going on. I came back and at that point in time, strangled her for the death strangle at that
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With your hands?
RADER: No, with a cord. With a rope.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Definitely shocked. One would think someone that was so intense in enforcing the law would not be one that would break the
RADER: I had never strangled anyone before, so I really didn`t know how much pressure you had to put on a person or how long it would take.
GRACE: Did you ever consider that he could have targeted you or your family?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We had a compliance issue with my husband, and he literally told my husband, he goes, well, let`s take it inside your
house and we`ll settle this in there. He could have killed my husband at that time. Luckily my husband was a big enough man and said you ain`t
stepping one foot on my property.
GRACE: I think that both of us better leave right now and we better get down on our knees and thank the Lord that he didn`t get into that
house, kill your husband and wait for you to get home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: BTK is arrested.
RADER: Now that I`ve confessed and put myself out and let everybody know what`s going on, I expect to heal.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Don`t let this monster have any comforts as he lives out his remaining years in prison. He isn`t worthy.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When the stories about him began to surface, he wanted to take advantage of that, and that was his vulnerability. He
wanted to be famous, and this was his big shot.
RADER: Finally, I want to apologize to the victims` families. There`s no way that I can ever repay them. That`s all, sir.
CASAREZ: A mother is accused of injecting a lethal dose of salt into her son`s feeding tube, causing his death. Was it all for attention?
Tonight the case heads back to court, but the mother is a no-show.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A pretrial hearing was held in the Lacy Spears case.
GRACE: Woman dubbed salt woman had to be put on suicide watch.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Now in shackles for killing her own son, five- year-old Garnet Spears.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The defendant didn`t show up.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CASAREZ: Out to Nancy Grace producer Alexis Weed, who was in court today. My first question to you, is why was this murder defendant not in
court for her own hearing?
WEED: Jean, it sounded like the defense expected her to be there. They said, Judge, this defendant has not been produced, our client has not
been produced. She did want to be here in court today. They wanted to make that clear. They definitely put that on the record today that she
expressed her interest in being there in court today.
CASAREZ: Alexis, start from the beginning and remind us. This case is really in its infancy right now. What are the facts?
WEED: This mother, Lacy Spears, she`s 26 years old, and she`s accused of putting salt into the feeding tube of her five-year-old son, Garnett.
Now, Garnett was having a feeding tube since he was nine months old. This was a mother who was bringing her child to the hospital almost his entire
life. He was being seen by doctors both outside of the hospital, inside of the hospital. But this is a woman who spent quite a bit of time there.
And prosecutors now suspect that all along that she has been mixing a salt solution and putting it into the boy`s feeding tube. And the reason is,
that the prosecutors say that they have evidence that she was dragging him into the bathroom while he was in the hospital during his last days, and
they think during that time, she was injecting the salt liquid into his feeding tube. But again, they suspect that there was maltreatment all
along in this boy`s life.
CASAREZ: And you know, Alexis, the amazing thing is, this little boy is in the hospital for seizures, quote/unquote, that`s what his mother
brought him in for. And one of the EEG machines actually took video to record seizures if and when they happened, and they allegedly show the
mother repeatedly taking him to the bathroom to inject the salt in his feeding tube. Here is my question, Alexis. Why isn`t this intent to kill
murder, if she made repeated trips to the hospital room bathroom with him?
WEED: So in New York, a first degree murder charge is usually brought only when a defendant is charged with let`s say killing a police officer.
In this case, she`s still facing life in prison. Her murder charge, that second degree murder charge, is still a mandatory minimum of 25 years and a
maximum of life.
CASAREZ: Many of you have been submitting Twitter questions about the Cooper Harris case, the toddler who baked to death when he was left in a
hot car by his father. I want to start with Cher (ph), who wants to know, did the tot go to day care every day or just a day or two a week, and do
you have to call the day care to report an absence? Michael Christian, Nancy Grace producer, who would take him to day care on an average day?
CHRISTIAN: He did go apparently every day, Jean. And the normal procedure was that Ross Harris, the father, would virtually always take him
in the morning, but then Ross and his wife, Leanna Harris, would alternate who picked him up in the afternoon. And the day care center apparently
sent Ross Harris, we learned this in the probable cause hearing, some sort of e-mail during the day of June 18th when Cooper died, but they did not
divulge what was in the e-mail, whether Ross Harris read it or whether he replied to it.
CASAREZ: Very interesting. Terry wants to know how much hotter would it be in the car seat if you`re unable to move with the padding on the
sides keeping the heat confined? Dr. Joye Carter, chief forensic pathologist of Marion County, Indiana, would the child be actually hotter
confined in the seat?
CARTER: The child is going to be hot, period. It only takes a couple of minutes for the temperature inside of a car with the windows up to rise
above 40, 50 degrees above the outside temperature. You`re going to have that plastic cover coating close to the body, making the child hotter,
perspiring and even hastening the fatality of heat exposure.
CASAREZ: Those are very good questions. Thank you, Dr. Carter. And thank you to everybody tonight. We remember American hero, Army Corporal
Gunnar Zwelling. 20 years old from O`Fallon (ph), Missouri. He was awarded the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, and Army Commendation Medal. He was
from a military family. He leaves behind his father, Kurt, his brothers Alex, Michael and Kevin. He was preceded in death by his mother Laura.
Gunner Zwelling, an American hero.
Tonight a new photo of Nancy`s son, John David. He`s enjoying time on the playground. He is adorable. For more photos, go to nancygrace.com.
Dr. Drew is coming up next. Good night, everybody.