Transcription of Interview with Sheriff Mike Scott on 9/9/2015

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  1. KateB

    KateB New Member

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    TG: Tricia Griffith, owner Websleuths
    SMS: Sheriff Mike Scott, Lee County (Florida) Sheriff's Office
    Broadcast: 9 Sept 2015

    TG: Welcome, one and all to a very special edition of Websleuths Radio on Blogtalkradio, of course. Not to be confused with my other show True Crime Radio on the iHeart Radio network. Believe me, I am confused enough for everybody. Tonight, it is an honor to have Lee County Florida Sheriff Mike Scott to discuss the murder case with more twists and turns than any true crime story I've come across in a long time. And I bet we don't know the half of it. The murder of Dr. Teresa Sievers. Now, most of you listening tonight know the details. I'm just going to go over the basics quickly here in case somebody is listening that has been living in a cave, we want to accommodate you, as well.

    Teresa Sievers, 46, was found in her Bonita Springs, Florida home. Murdered. Monday, June 29th.
    Her husband Mark Sievers, their children and her sister were all in Connecticut when Sievers' body was found. Dr. Sievers had been in CT for a funeral and flew home early. Two men, both from Missouri, have been arrested for the murder. Mark Sievers' best friend, Curtis Wayne Wright, and Wright's friend, Jimmy Rodgers. Both live in Mark's home state of Missouri. Now, that's the basic outline right there for you.

    Sheriff Scott, Welcome to Websleuths Radio. I truly appreciate you taking the time out to help us today.

    SMS: It's a pleasure to be with you. I'm sorry it's to discuss such a tragic set of circumstances.

    TG: I know. It really is incredibly tragic. And let me just ask you briefly. Am I cutting out at all?

    SMS: Oh, no. I hear you loud and clear.

    TG: Okay. Same here. Thank you so much. It is very, very tragic. What we have found out about Dr. Sievers is just how loved she was by her patients and her friends. And the world really is a sadder place without her, that's for sure.

    First of all, before we get in to the questions from our Websleuths members,
    Sheriff Scott, are there any things you would like to clear up, any misconceptions that you would like to state now for the records so we can clear it up and move on?

    SMS: Well, perhaps the time frame in terms of between the time of the initial crime, if you will, not us becoming aware of it and responding, and then the arrest. There was some discussion that it was taking too long. Of course, I don't know who determines what, how long is too long. But I think now, that the logistics of an interstate investigation have become known. I think, now in retrospect, people probably understand. But initially, there was an awful lot of pressure, in the community, from media outlets and otherwise, suggesting that it's been 2 days, there's still no arrest. It's been a week, or two weeks, three weeks. It was like this constant countdown for us. I just want people to understand, that we can't discuss play-by-play as these investigations unfold. To do so would be, of course, irresponsible and reckless. And so initially, particularly, we need to be pretty close to the chest on this stuff but certainly, never want anyone to have a misconception that it's taking too long. I would like for these crimes to be solved seconds after they occur. In fact, let me check that. I'd like them to be solved prior to even occurring. But we have to be realistic.

    TG: There you go.

    SMS: We have to be realistic. For the most part, it's certainly... your opening comments were spot-on accurate, in terms of Rogers and Wright and Wright's relationship to Dr. Sievers' husband, Mark Sievers. So I think on that, we can safely move forward.

    TG: Fantastic. It isn't like it is on TV. We're used to seeing everything solved within an hour. We 've just got to realize. We don't get to get in on all the details. Even though, we want them terribly. It's not our place to have them. So I'm glad to hear that at least now, people are understanding that you are doing everything in your power to solve this case. Let's get right to the question.

    KateB, one of our wonderful moderators, who has worked so hard on the Teresa Sievers forum,wants to know, this question:

    On July 12, there was a raid on CWW's trailer in Missouri. Okay, now your people from your office - were they there for that raid or did the Missouri officials raid it? And then call you and say “hey, you better get down here?” Was it, were you connected in the raid or did you come in a little bit after, after they went in?

    SMS: No, we were absolutely connected. We had people there, from the Lee County Sheriff's office down here in Fort Myers, Florida, that were in Missouri for, in essence, every aspect of this investigation, to include the search warrant that you mentioned. And so our people were there. Of course, along with Missouri authorities, as well as authorities from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The FBI, in a case like this is most helpful, of course, especially given the interstate nature of things. So we were there. Yes, mam.

    TG: Can you let us in on anything you found, by chance?
    SMS: Well, I can simply say, generally, that we gathered a substantial amount of what we believe is significant evidence. Collected that and processed some of it there. Most was returned to Florida for processing. We've been using private labs here in Florida to expedite things. We do have a state lab, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), of course operates a crime scene lab. And typically, though, in a case like this, we go to a private lab. So that's what we've done. Some of the evidence has been sent elsewhere in the country, frankly, for some specialized testing. It's a very very complicated set of circumstances involving this, both in Florida at the crime scene and out into Missouri. And frankly, all points in-between.

    TG: There was also, due to our incredible sleuths on Websleuths, they've discovered that Mark owns a condo in nearby Fenton, MO. Do you know if that property was searched and can you comment on anything that was found?

    SMS: I know the answers to the question or to the curiosity. However, I'm unable to comment specifically to that as to whether or not it was searched and as to whether or not anything was found. I am familiar, though, with that reference.

    TG: Okay. We had a very close friend of Mark Sievers come on Websleuths, register. I spoke with him. I made sure his identify was correct. That he was who he said he was. And he came on to defend Mark Sievers. Saying that this man that he knew could never do this. And he did mention that, and this was in late August that he came on, he did mention that he had been trying to get a hold of Mark Sievers for the past 30 days. And Mark had not returned his phone calls. That he'd basically been ignoring him. Whereas before, right after the murder, he was easy to get in contact with. They communicated on a regular basis. He did mention this on Websleuths that he was having trouble
    getting in touch with Mark. Mark was not returning his phone calls. Lo and behold, shortly thereafter Mark Sievers called him and told him, he did not commit this crime. We don't know what else was said. I have a feeling Mark probably told our member, to quit posting. Because right after he got that phone call, the member came on and said “Mark Sievers did not do this. I have heard from him and this will be my last post.” Basically, that's what he said.

    Do you find that as kind of curious, as we all do, that all of a sudden, his friend is complaining. He can't get in touch with him. Then boom! He calls him and says “I didn't do this!” Would you like to comment on that?

    Well, really, I don't know that I could comment on that. I know that you said that you verified who this person was. Perhaps it's just my humble understanding of cyberspace. But I'm not sure how, we would, in essence, I'm aware of the fact that people can fed? up false domains, and different names and different surnames under different postings, and particularly again in this world of cyberspace. I'm not sure who this person was or exactly what they said, other than what you've told me. What I can say here, many people have said many things. There's been a great deal of speculation because of the initial time delay in terms of us announcing information on the arrest in particular.
    We referred to that earlier at the top of the show. So there has been some speculation. Certainly there is rumor. There are half-truths. There's people that get a little bit of information and sort of extrapolate from there. The only thing I can say is that we are guided by the specific evidence. Not sort of the he said, she said, third parties, these unconfirmed, I guess you would say, conversations and communications with these people. For those reasons, I can't say too much about this apparent friend who, again, apparently related this story. Beyond what you've told me, that's really all I know about it.

    TG: Yes, we do have a ...short of hiring a private detective and searching their birth records. We do always state that, you know, I believe this person is who they say they are. However, they certainly could fool us. I do believe just based on the information he was able to give and to provide to me that he was the man who he said he was.
    Whether he is was that close of a friend of Mark's, I just have to take his word for it. But you're right about cyberspace. It's a tricky field out there. That's for sure.

    TG: One of our members, AmazonRain, a fantastic member, wants to know:

    Do you see an impaneling of the grand jury to review the evidence? Maybe leading to further charges? Is that a possibility in Florida?

    SMS: That is a possibility in Florida, speaking generally. Now, not so much specific to this case, in terms of what I think may or may not happen. Obiously there are two steps of very strict responsibility. One is the law enforcement's obligation to investigate crime, reach a level of what we call probable cause. And then, of course, make arrests. The second critical phase is obviously the prosecution. Their burden is, of course even higher than probable cause, it's beyond a reasonable doubt. And the prosecution, we call it the state attorney here, state attorney's office, district attorney in many places. But the prosecuting authorities ultimately would make a decision like that. In terms, in whether or not A case, again, generally speaking, A case in Florida, goes before the grand jury or whether or not they file directly. Direct file on these specific charges and immediately put the person through the prosecutorial stage. I can't speculate on what might happen with this case other to say generally, that that is a possibility.

    TG: We'll certainly keep our eye out for that. Are you able to comment on who it was that found Dr. Sievers' body?
    SMS: No, mam. But I will tell you that as soon as CWW arrives back in Florida from Missouri, and I expect that to be sooner rather than later. At that point in time, it will trigger a Florida public record law regarding the initial charging documents. Those documents will not be the complete case report. In other words, literally piece by piece. However, they will be a very, very, very close look into this crime. And frankly, the first look for all the world to see into this crime that we've been ( ) to discuss.

    So we can talk many more of the specifics. Maybe some of those, regrettably I'm not able to answer clearly or specifically tonight. Again, that doesn't happen with his arrest in Missouri where he is now. But when he comes to Florida and the clock starts, so to speak, on this Florida prosecution phase. That will trigger the release of those documents. They'll be entered into our county clerk's office. And they'll be a matter of public record. I expect with perhaps some redaction. Possibly of some information, not much. Things like medical perhaps, if there's medical information contained in there, different things like that. But pursuant to our public records and disclosure law which is very broad, the broadest in the country. That is very broad.
    that will become available. And it'll be more of a play-by-play insight for the people of the community, of the state, and elsewhere, frankly, the country, and the world. In this case, it's taken on such a persona that they'll be able to know that much more about the investigation and I think you'll understand more clearly what's going on here.

    TG: We're talking with Lee County Florida Sheriff Mike Scott. Sheriff Scott is in charge of the investigation in the murder of Teresa Sievers. And let me ask you about the Florida Sunshine Law. We love it. Obviously, we love it. Do you find it might hinder you a little in a case to have so much information released that you're investigating?
    SMS: No, mam. Because there are provisions within the law that of course, if it is a pending investigation as this is. Then obviously we have much more control over that. Typically, in Florida, generally speaking, anything at all that's produced in furtherance of agency business - so my telephone records, my calendar, documents that we produce at the sheriff's office. Whether that’s for budgets, or investigations or otherwise. However, if it is a pending, on-going investigation, we do have the latitude to guard that information. That's why I say, some of this might be redacted and it won't be as comprehensive as ultimately, the case report, the thing that has every single shred of everything we've got. Where that's evidentery, transcribed interviews so people can hear and/or read, what the interview consisted of, how detectives interviewing Curtis Wright, Jimmy Rodgers, and others. So that's a comprehensive overview of what took place. The documents I was referring to that I think will be released rather soon, when Wright gets here, when Wayne Wright gets here. will be more of a preliminary, cursory look, But certainly much more detail than anything I, or we have been able have been able to discuss up to this point.

  2. KateB

    KateB New Member

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    From here to the end is still in progress.
    TG: And that brings me to my next question. No It's Not. Do you suspect or do you have any idea that the 911 call when the body was discovered. Will that be part of the document released under Florida Sunshine Law when Wayne is brought back to Florida?

    SMS: It may well be. Working parallel with our state attorney's office, as we have since very early in this investigation. Keep in mind, now into the 10th week. Working very closely every step of the way with the state attorney's office. Those are determinations that will be made. WE understand that if, not if, when, it's just a matter of when that is released, that will become a very interesting thing for media stories to build around. Play the 911 tape. It, of course, the first initial contact any of us have with this tragic event. And naturally, it's a matter of interest. But I can't guarantee that that will be released at the same time as the paperwork. My best guess is, given the nature of this case and given the nature of the work thats we have that's yet to be completed
    unfinished business. In that ongoing nature, chances are we'll be releasing as little as we have to. That's my guess. But again, much of that would be with the oversight of our prosecuting authorities, the state attorney's office.

    TG: And to tie into what you just said, this case is unusual. And you are obviously holding back as much as you can because it helps your investigation to do so and that is certainly understandable. But when all is said and done, you've kind of hinted at the fact, you've commented when it's all said and done, books and movies will be made about this crime.
    LuvsAMystry (spell-check needed) is curious what facet this comment refers to, since it implies something extraordinary. Can you comment or elaborate on that at all?

    SMS: Well, I can.
    The nature of the discussions, now, the nature of other national discussions that I've had... Nancy Grace, we've already had discussions with 48 hours, NBC Dateline, not to mention an absolute avalanche of media interest, both local here in Florida and Missouri. I've done many interviews with media partners in Missouri. That alone tells us that there's something extraordinary about this case. And keep in mind, the public and the media does not know
    Does not know, even scratch the surface of what we know. So my thinking here, to the question, if it's this interesting at a national level, at this stage of the game, with what everything that isn't known....
    Imagine how interesting this will be when all the dots are connected. I did make the reference and I do believe, based on what I see
    Online and otherwise, it's the nature of society's interest in these crime type show, theforensic files, unsolved crimes,
    this has a making of a movie or a book. Certainly further discussion about the tragic events
    Subsequently evolved to the death of Dr. Sievers. A young professional woman, mother of 2. As you mentioned earlier, revered by the community, revered by her patients.

    I knew her personally. She and I served together at Our Mother's Home. It's a wonderful program that helps unwed mothers, pregnant mothers. But with that said, it was brief, about a 6 month period. Then I left the board and she stayed on
    She was very very well known. I think the nature of her profession, she's an attractive woman, the mystery that surrounds this type of a, well, clearly a murder. Obvious, this is no accident. The totality of this and the interest thus far, again to the question, tells me, this is an extraordinary case even based on what little you know. Well, maybe what little others know...
    we know quite a lot
    we probably don't know everything yet. Obviously, if we did,
    We remain open to additional information. We remain open to tips that may come in. We don't want to close the door because we believe there is a lot of unfinished business.

    TG: Boy, that is the truth. I can imagine what is yet to come that we will discover. Sheriff Scott, you've made mention of possible other arrests. Do you think, can you say whether you believe it's going to be one person, two people or you don't really have a number?

    SMS: I don't have a number. I can tell you, again, we followed the evidence. I've said publicly

    that I would not rule that out. But we do believe, certainly we believe, that CWW and JRR, that the evidence clearly points to their direct involvement in this case. Their specific and direct involvement in this case.
    Again, there could be, as with any case, there could be issues prior to the event, during the event, or certainly the immediate or subsequent aftermath of the event.
    pre-event, at event and post-event
    others involved, either direct or indirect

    We don't believe there are other victims. Although, I will submit
    It's ripped our community.
    I've been here my whole life.
    I don't know that I recall a case, quite this high profile.
    This is why I say it would be very premature to rule anything out.
    Again, I just wouldn't be able to put a number on it.

    TG: Got it. Understood. Here, at Websleuths, we're very careful not to discuss people as possible suspects unless something has been said in the main stream media that they are considered a suspect by the police or considered a person of interest. You've added a new twist that has everybody just spinning, trying to think. Is he a suspect or is he not? You said something, and please correct me, words to the effect that Mark Sievers, Teresa's husband and Wayne Wright's best friend is in the 'envelope of suspicion' or is around the envelope of suspicion?. What did you mean by that?

    SMS: That's correct. The general envelope of suspicion. Being again, broadly in any case of this nature or specific to this case, we typically, initially look from the inside out. So the people stands to reason if you think about this. The people who are closest to the victim - husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, children and then you extrapolate out from that to perhaps good friends, very good close family friends, maybe neighbors and/or business partners. Those people are generally in the immediate circle, or immediate sphere or envelope of the victim. Initially are persons of great interest to us. Either for their involvement, perhaps as a suspect, perhaps as their involvement as a witness. But certainly their general involvement
    or what they might be able to contribute to the investigation. And from there you work on.
    IN other words, when we first responded to the 911 call that we talked about earlier. We didn't immediately say this must have something to do with someone in Missouri, or California or Ohio. You generally want to work from the inside out. The inside out led us to Missouri. So that's what I referred to. If a husband is killed, the wife or immediate family members

    Close business associates are going to be in that realm of witness slash suspect slash et cetera.

    in terms of their involvement.

    TG: I have to tell you, Sheriff Scott, I love
    We do have to be careful
    as fair as we can to
    and have their lives torn up if htey're not. And that is part of our responsibility on Websleuths.
    definitely innocent victims like the children. Very very tragic.
    We have a member named CoolJ
    Do you feel that this investigation will lead to any different crimes other than ones connected to Teresa Sievers?

    SMS: That is a great question.
    Let's speak to this one
    Generally, we charged these two men with second degree murder in the death of Dr. Sievers. My thinking is that a person who kills, a person who steals, a person who uses drugs, a person who commits any type of crime. It does happen that that's the only time they've done it. We catch drug dealers and/or users and it's the very first time in their lives they've used drugs...generally speaking, not the case. “Generally speaking, a person especially has a proclivity to commit crime as both of these men have prior records. It'd be very reckless, inappropriate and inaccurate for me to issue a statement that they never have committed a crime

    or that they're suspect in something else. Many times when a person is caught, let's say in a case like this. Other things

    Thanks to the technology of dna and some of the other progressive things in evidence and testing. As everyone knows, you can go back on colder cases, older cases, with dna and other methods of trying to link perhaps people to other

    to maybe cold case
    So speaking in generally, I would not rule that out. I would certainly not say that no other charges in Florida or elsewhere, specifically Missouri. That's where they live. Could possibly result from this.

    Again, we start the investigation from that 911 call, from our initial deputy on scene and to literally, the avalanche of people that responded subsequent from that and we moved from there, methodically, slow and steady, as the evidence takes us. It took us to Jimmy Ray Rodgers, and Curtis Wayne Wright and taken us elsewhere in areas and directions that I can't discuss.
    it is our goal to leave no stone unturned. And I know it sounds cliché
    And by the way,
    we do this with every case. Some are solved quickly. Some take longer

    clearly the logistics of interstate activity created a time delay
    simply putting people on planes, working out hotel rooms, eating in restaurants.
    the first time we went thinking we were there for three days. We were there for three weeks. Our people had to literally buy more clothing

    we left with some evidence think

    we get there, and the thing continues to snowball with evidence and findings and information.

    We felt kind of like Gilligan going out on a 3 hour tour

    TG: Well, there you go.

    SMS: yes, there you go.

    TG: I know you have a lot of things to do. Do

    SMS: I'll just simply say, as I mentioned earlier, we never discourage people from giving information. We mentioned already in
    Someone that is party to this program

    want to share with you and your followers, get a feel for people
    this case or any case. We always welcome that information
    we do appreciate everybody's patience
    It is very complicated, a very complex intricate set of circumstances.
    working through
    I'm very proud of the agency
    and I think you'll see more clearly as the paperwork comes forward.

    exactly what is involved here. IT's quite fascinating.

    TG: Sheriff Scott of Lee County Florida.
    It means a great deal to us
    to help us understand this case more.
    When the documents are released, I hope you can spend a little time with us. We hope to have you back real soon. IF you need anything from us, don't hesitate, Okay?

    SMS: Okay, thank you, thank you. I'd love to rejoin you perhaps when we have additional developments that we can discuss.

    TG: Thank you, Sheriff. Thank you so much.

    SMS: Bye-bye.
  3. Tricia

    Tricia Owner Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    Thank you KateB for taking the time to transcribe the show. We greatly appreciate your hard work.

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