Mark Fuhrman Goes Into 'The Murder Business'
This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," October 13, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MARTHA MACCALLUM, FOX NEWS GUEST HOST: Well, Mark Fuhrman shot to international fame during the O.J. Simpson trial, and later was on the front lines some of the most notorious crime cases in history, including the Casey Anthony and Drew Peterson murder investigations. He is the author of the new book "The Murder Business: How the Media Turns Crime Into Entertainment and Subverts Justice." Former LAPD homicide detective Mark Fuhrman joins us now. Mark, good to have you with us.
MARK FUHRMAN, AUTHOR, "THE MURDER BUSINESS": Thank you.
MACCALLUM: It's a fascinating read. I was going through it in my office this afternoon and I couldn't put it down because it really reminds you why these cases got so much attention. And you know, you get drawn into the story and you ask, Why -- and you still wonder with all these cases what really happened that day. And you try to answer some of those questions. You know, what drew to you write this book?
FUHRMAN: Well, actually, when I went through the Simpson case, I was a cop. Then I was a good cop. Then I was a bad cop. Then I had the media camped out in front of my house when I retired. Then, you know, I am the evilest thing on the planet. Then I write a few books and then I start getting involved, like the Martha Moxley case. So I actually saw it full circle.
And then working for Fox -- of course, Fox gives me latitude and responsibility to actually triage some of these cases and try to keep us on line with this balancing act between the news and compromising an investigation. So I was kind of inspired not by watching Fox, because I know what we're doing, but watching the other networks and listening to what's going on and watching them pay for the news and watching them pay for people to be on shows and tempting them and doing all these things...
MACCALLUM: What happens when you do that? I mean, what kind of responses do you get to some questions? I was reading the chapter on Drew Peterson, and it really brought me back into, you know, the cases and the stories that were involved in that. And a couple of things popped out at me that you talked about. And one of them was Stacy Peterson, when she recounted to her pastor what had happened the night that she believes Drew Peterson killed Kathleen Savio and how she caught him -- he came down stairs wearing all black, and she catches him putting women's clothing into a washing machine. I didn't remember that, though. I didn't remember that.
FUHRMAN: Well, you know, it was -- that was done in segments because that's how we fed it out when we could. And "when we could" is an operative way that we have to do this. You just can't dump something because it does trickle out in small pieces. But Neil Schori, the minister, very brave man because he had a balancing act -- and I tried to describe that -- a balancing act between the responsibility to a human being and the responsibility to his vows. And which trumps which? Well, do no harm, and the victim is the number one person we're talking about. And Stacy told him so somebody was left to actually tell her story.
MACCALLUM: And you were able to, you know, talk to him and help him to see on his own that that was what she probably wanted. You think that he didn't plan to kill Stacy Peterson. And you confronted him with it. What did he say to you when you looked at him and said, You killed her, didn't you?
FUHRMAN: Well, he was typically Drew Peterson.
FUHRMAN: He smiled, laughed, and was his affable, engaging self. And this is -- this is his power. He was able to draw people in, women especially. He had a good rap.
FUHRMAN: And he was able to probably be a fairly good police officer with it. But he also used this as his power to actually manipulate and control. He knows that I know. And when we actually talked, he tried to actually manipulate me by telling me, Look, come on, we're cops.
FUHRMAN: Like I said, you crossed the line.
MACCALLUM: Yes. No, we're...
FUHRMAN: No, and I -- and to answer your question, I don't think it's intentional. I think it's rarely intentional when you have a murder that occurs with other people in the house, in their home, where the removal of the body is difficult, when all these things are now complications to clean up instead of careful planning.
MACCALLUM: You said you thought it was a fight and that she died in the course of that fight, most likely, or he killed her in the course of that fight. A similar thing may have happened with Casey Anthony and Caylee, the way that you lay it out in the book, and you describe what you think happened that day. It sounds to me like you think that she killed her maybe accidentally, or maybe intentionally, and then tried to get rid of her body.
FUHRMAN: Yes, it's -- I think it's a little bit more difficult when you have a 3-year-old to actually try to describe how they died. Could have been an accident. Could have been a moment of rage. She could have been swimming in the pool without supervision -- I mean, all these things that Casey Anthony was just not going to take responsibility for. But now it's first degree murder.
MACCALLUM: There are so many interesting details in the book, including just the one about when you went to talk to George and Cindy Anthony, the fact that you noticed that their house was so incredibly meticulous and perfect everywhere. And you thought to yourself, How does somebody who keep this kind of house not notice that their granddaughter is missing for several weeks?
FUHRMAN: You know, the denial -- and I had to actually tell them that first day I was in Florida, I said, You know your granddaughter's dead. But you know, detectives actually project themselves into somewhat how they would respond. Even being callused and kind of hardened by what they do, I would be so debilitated by the death of a child, my child...
MACCALLUM: Of course.
FUHRMAN: ... that I doubt if I would care what the house looked like for months, or ever.
MACCALLUM: All right. Mark Fuhrman, it's a fascinating book. Thank you very much for being with us tonight.
FUHRMAN: Thank you.
MACCALLUM: Good stuff. Thank you, Mark.
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