tv Maximum Drama MSNBC December 1, 2013 3:00am-4:01am PST
there was no crime scene. he just vanished. >> my husband and i feel we must hume lin do what we can as his parents. >> there was a lot of fear, they didn't catch the perpetrator, something like this is going to happen again. >> every time we found a clue, we ran into a brick wall. >> at that moment when our eyes
met, i knew i was going to hear exactly what happened to my son that day. >> you have no idea what it's like to look for your missing child. it is hell on earth. ? a 30-year-old case is challenging. it's a jigsaw puzle with lots of pieces. >> there are a lot of missing people in this can country that never get resolved. >> the police say they have no crime. i have no son. >> the parents now believe the boy is alive and has been kidnapped.
>> johnny, we love you. we're waiting for you to come home. >> please let us know what you want as far as anything that we can do to have john return home to us safely. >> we're leaving the porch light on every night. moms are like that. take care, babe. >> john and nahrin are sure their son is coming back, and the front porch light stays on until that happens opinion. >> nobody saw anything that to us was an explanation for the boy's disappearance. this was that unsolved, unexplained missing person case.
>> the 30th anniversary has gotten so much more impact, it remits a huge chunk of my son's life. all those years that we missed, that he missed. you can't recapture that, ever. >> i was born and raised in eastern iowa. i got married relatively young. i was given the news my husband had cancer and there was no way for him to survive. about two months before he died, we were hit with a tornado. everything was destroyed. just a few short weeks later, my husband died. and i remember just trying to rest a little bit, and my little girl came walking over to the couch and she said, are you
going to die, too? like daddy? wake up call. time to get up. time to get moving. that experience, it either makes you or breaks you. i was the adult. and i had to pull myself up by the boot straps. >> we met through a friend that i was in the marine corps with. >> we started dating and then we got married, had a nice wedding. and then a couple of years later, we had johnny. life was good. but we were a normal little family. that was our house right there. >> west des moines was a very quiet, peaceful, safe place. low in crime and everything else. >> johnny and i were best
friends. i just remember nothing but happiness. you couldn't live in a better place or have a better environment. >> johnny just enjoyed doing so many things that he had such joy about it. >> anytime that somebody had a birthday or something, he would spend a lot of time getting the right package for him. >> if he had a pack of gum, he would hand out a slice to you and a slice to you and then look in the gum package and say, oh, i don't have any left. i didn't get one. he was that unselfish. >> johnny's first morning on his paper route, he did the sunday morning paper. and he had his way and he would take gretchen and they'd deliver the paper together. he wanted the paper route because he wanted to get himself a dirt bike. >> he became quite the little businessman. he saved his money and he bought
it. well, then he and his brother would go riding out in the fields. >> that particular sunday, we get a phone call about 7:00 in the morning from one of the neighbors wondering where the paper was. got up, got in the car, went to the corner and found the wagon. didn't see him anywhere around and told maureen, something is wrong. she called the police right away. >> it took about 45 minutes before the police arrived. >> the police department was only ten blocks away. >> the cop looked at me and said well, has your son ever run away before? >> the kid never ran away. that really upset us. >> i was there that morning. there happened to be a car on 42nd street. and there was a guy in there. he was talking to johnny gosh.
johnny said, hey, can you come over here and help this guy? all of the sudden, this car just swung -- he made a u-turn and took off. >> i thought it was kind of strange that he would do that. >> to say that somebody stopped and asked directions of a paper boy, that would not be at all out of line. we still don't know what happened that morning. john apparently left the residence sometime around 5:45. there's a neighbor hearing the wagon being pulled through the back of his yard. mike was picking up his morning papers and noticed the car and stopped and backed up to the point where john gosh was walking and it appeared that john spoke briefly to the driver of the vehicle. >> people saw him talk with a man in a car. that car left johnny. john any proceeded to where the papers had been dropped. >> the vehicle is described as a two-tone blue ford fairmount.
>> that car came back. >> i think i told police he looked like he was mad or something. but who is to know? >> the next are two newspaper carriers. he says hi to johnny and he says hi, then proceeds to where the newspapers have been dropped. >> at about this time, t.j. smith reported hearing a car door and, upon sitting up in bed, he observed a silver and black ford fairmount start up from where john was last seen and then made a left turn rolling through the stop sign without stopping. >> the car ran the stoplight there and it turned left. in fact, his wagon was still sitting right there. >> the two newspaper carriers, they get their newspapers, turn around and walk back by the same corner. when they walk by the wagons,
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this is where it would have occurred. the witnesses had said there was a car up here. and i think the wagon was left in this area with the papers in it. >> and, you know, the trail gets cold real quick. you know, like all cops do, it's a run-away. the kid run away. no, this kid wasn't a run away. johnny was our paper boy. i knew his parent, went out to dinner with them. johnny would not run away. there was no crime scene and
nobody saw anything that, to us, was an explanation for the boy's disappearance. he just vanished. >> at that time, when a kid disappeared, it was generally a kid who ran away from home. >> we were thinking that around the news room. you get the story in the paper. by the time the paper gets delivered on the porches the next day, this kid is home in bed. >> it didn't seem like he was going to run away. >> no, no. the only thing was his car. i don't know. >> we began a systematic search from the last sighting of johnny gosh on out. >> thousands of people have been searching for the boy, but nothing positive has turned up. >> the one thing that was missing was the f.b.i. so i asked the police chief, and he said, well, i don't really think we need the f.b.i.
we just don't really have a crime here. we just don't really have a crime. and i said, well, that's funny. there's five witnesses that says we do. >> law enforcement authorities have no new leads in the case and had few to begin with. the drivers of cars in the area have yet to come forward with information. a massive search has failed to turn up any clues in the case. >> we were told by government agencies, well, you have to prove that child is in danger. to us, he's a runaway until you prove he's in danger. >> this story had moved from my son was abducted to a conflict with law enforcement of you're not doing enough, you're not running down the leads. >> i interviewed orville penney, and believe me, i remember this, says, "i don't give a damn about what noreen gosch has to say."
and that set off the fireworks. >> the police chief had a lot of personal problems and he was tired of the media coming down and bothering him and all of that stuff. >> you can almost go into a state of mind where you don't want to talk to anybody not ever again, not trust anybody ever again. >> noreen has not, nor ever has been, a shrinking violet. she will not stay home and cry in her handkerchief. she went out there aggressively and rightfully so. >> we've been disappointed. things have not been followed through as adequately as hoped. so therefore my husband and i feel we must do what we humanly can as parents. >> if you want to solve the case, you have to do some things. you can't just sit behind your desk and wait for the driver of the car to come and turn himself
in. >> every assumption, every guess, we took them to heart and followed up on him. we did it by what is now the book. what we did that morning and what we've done since is about the same. >> slowly, the searches stopped. everybody went back to their lives. we were told by the chief that they just couldn't direct anymore of the total police force to this case. and they were going to have to put the case on a back burner. i said to them we have to do something. >> we were contacted by ken wooden. >> newspaper boy missing and the dog was still there. and it was obvious. if the dog was still there, he was never a runaway. >> he said you have to get your
own investigation going. >> two private investigators agreed to take the case and they began canvassing the area doing interviews with neighbors. well, the first morning they were out on the job, up pulls the west des moines police and there was friction and debates starting. every minute we wasted was wasting my son's life. and that i took personally. >> a person can give up very easily. and so i think he needs our strength and support more than anything else. >> i think people would be shocked at what the real situation was in 1982. police were required to wait 72 hours before starting a missing persons case. the f.b.i. would track your stolen car across state lines, but it would not track your stolen child across state lines. there was no infrastructure to support missing children. >> all of us were reading about
the turmoil that was going on with the search. and none of us felt that was right, of course. but the help find johnny gosch foundation was something that they would have the confidence that this would keep going no matter what happened to them. >> the foundation was started for changing the legislation, for law enforcements responding immediately when a child is taken. >> you have no idea what it's like to look for your missing child. it is hell on earth. >> the two words "went missing" are fighting words to me. when there's evidence that they are kidnapped, then the word is kidnapped, not went missing. >> i understand that you got three phone calls just a week ago.
was it johnny? >> yes, it was, jane. we received the first of three calls. they were six minutes apart and each phone call lasted about 40 seconds. >> what did he sound like? and what did he say? he was pleading for help and the phone was disconnected. on the second call, i reassured him that we would find him and they disconnected the phone again. they intentionally made the phone calls to be short. >> you feel they were tormenting you? >> we feel that johnny was forced to make the calls, yes. >> who are they? any idea? >> we have descriptions of two men that were seen the morning he was disappeared. >> he was definitely abducted. was it someone who was sexually crazy or someone who put him into human tracking? >> scientifically, about half of the population are sexually attracted to children. those people are going to appear
at all levels of our society from coaches to priests to teachers to police officers. >> this is a catalog, a catalog for pedophiles. 45-year-old man seeks contact with others interested in adolescent and preadolescent boys and girls. >> i feel that our son was kidnapped. it was for some very organized effort for profit. >> predators, especially wealthy vips, like the younger the child, the better. there are people that know that, pimps, and they grab kids or they seduce kids and they become part of human trafficking. >> there was a lot of fear if they didn't catch the perpetrator, something like this was going to happen again. that's what happened.
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so right now, this is all we have. this is what i call a composite description of the six witnesses. >> we've never had any. and all of the sudden, there was two paper boys gone. >> you just feel completely lost. you know, you don't know what to do, where to go, who to talk to. it's just like a movie being rerun. we felt like we were watching a
movie except the actors were different. >> everyone involved thought the same thing happened again. >> we were trying to find a connection. we did not find a connection. the boys were dissimilar in most aspects other than their gender. >> the police say they cannot connect those two stories. which i find kind of incredible. there's so many similarities, you know, at the same day, time, conditions. how could you not think they were connected? >> how could it happen twice? mr. martin, did your son know about the johnny gosch case? >> yes, he's aware of it and been aware of the story of johnny gosch. >> is it possible that the same person kidnapped both boys?
or is that just a coincidence? >> at this point, it's possible. but there's a great many facts that are very striking. >> are you hopeful that the trail for eugene martin might lead to johnny, too? >> yes, we are. >> i think people thought, i can't believe this could happen here. this kind of stuff doesn't happen here. >> you're talking about the early 1980s. kids were out playing in the dark. their moms let them go to school unescorted. this was part of americana for a long, long time. and it's gone. and it started with those two stories.
>> a lady called us about 9:00 at night and said she had received the bill in change at a grocery store in sioux city, iowa. i said could you please send it to me and i'll send you a dollar back for it. that's what she did. >> his signature is right in this area. >> he was somehow able to communicate that he was still alive. it was just such a helpless feeling. this case is almost three years oelgd. we have to try to make some attempt to the people that actually have him. this is the reason for this plea. he walked out the door and the kids were getting ready to have pizza. i'll never forget it as long as i live, as he walked out the doorway, and i'll never forget it as long as i live, save me some pizza, mom, i'll be hungry
when i get home. and he waved when he got to the bushes and i waved to him and that was that. and i never saw him again. >> we received a letter, a two-page typewritten letter. it said i'll never be able to return home. they cut my hair. they've dyed my hair. i look different. and it was signed, love your son, johnny gosch. from the time johnny could write, he always signed notes like to mom and dad, "love your son, johnny gosch." and the reason he did that is because his father's name was john, too. that was his identity. >> the one thing that you learn, if your case goes long term, you don't start jumping up and down
like this is it, i hope we can check this out if it's valid, but if it's not i can handle it. because when you crash down in disappointment, it is so zef stating. that became my vehicle for handling things. >> it seems every time i want to help people, it gets pushed right back in my face. what i want to do is try and help find the giese who did do this stuff. all i remember him talking about is i was just supposed to hold this person down in the back of a car and put the stuff over his face. >> and that was johnny? >> yeah.
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hey, there. actor paul walker is dead after a car crash saturday. the star was a passenger. the driver of the car was killed as well. while questions remain about its stability, the white house says the troubled health care website is well on its way to being completely fixed. and early shopping on thanksgiving day cut into black friday sales. retail sales reported sales were down 13% from last year. i'm veronica de la cruz. let's get you back to the program.
>> 24-year-old paul bona chi, a victim of sex abuse since the age of 6, he himself is a convicted sex offender and has been diagnosed with multiple personality disorder. we spoke to him at the state prison. he showed us dozens of portraits signed by the personalities that haunt him. >> this is a bunch of the personalities right here. >> it is only through the personalities that reremembers the day he helped kidnap johnny gosch. >> every time he would put his head down and come up with somebody, it seemed authentic. >> he says child pornography, sex magazines and films involving chimp as young as the age of 6 had always been the reason behind johnny's abduction. >> it was absurd to me because i thought he's probably going to go through more than i did.
>> ten days ago, he drew a map of the plan, a replica of one drew by the kid nnappekidnapper. this "x" marks the exact spot of the abduction. most people mistakingly believe it happened at the corner. >> when paul bonacci first surfaced, i needed some time to sit down and meet with him. i could have strangled him. but i also know that he had been forced to do it. he had been a victim also by the same people. >> the video just can't pick up how badly noreen gosch is shaking as she sees paul bonacci for the first time. he fills out a consent form not knowing who this woman is. >> this is johnny's mother. mrs. gosch just wanted to talk to you. >> just tell me what happened. please?
>> i feel so -- i feel so bad about it because what they made me do. >> when he stepped forward to give us that information, he didn't get anything out of it. so i had to admire the young man for the courage to do that. why did they want johnny? everybody asks me that. i don't know the answer. >> they wanted to use kids who were closer to families. >> why? >> they like to hurt people. >> they did a good job of that. >> they asked me about his family. >> did he ever know we were trying to find him? >> no. >> is everything that you're telling me the truth about johnny?
>> yes, absolutely. >> for me, hearing all of this, it was just like my whole body seized up. i kept thinking, i can't listen to any more. but i have to. i have to hear the rest of what he has to say. they kept him tied and gagged a good share of the time. the kidnappers took pictures of that to either advertise him for sale or, in some way, entice another pedophile to pay for services. >> he talked about some kind of medication. i didn't know what that meant. or yoga or -- he said something about he had seen his mom do that or something. >> i have never told the press that johnny went with me to yoga classes. it wasn't relevant to his kidnapping.
>> these are all starting to fit a puzzle that are important things. they might be little things, and they might not be big things to the police department, but they might be forming a picture. >> after viewing our unedited interview, west des moines police said bonacci said little to prove he had firsthand knowledge of the crime. >> there's no way you can say right now that i'm convinced and we've got to go talk to him? you can't say that? >> i can't, myself, at this point, no. >> i would have to think after all of the frustration and all of the dead ends, what does it go and hurt to talk to him? why not do that? >> and so investigators from this department went to omaha. they did not interview paul bonocci, but they did interview his siblings. his siblings put him in omaha at the time of the disappearances of johnny gosch. we can only go on information that's given to us, so that's information that says we
shouldn't continue to go down the path of paul bonacci based on what siblings are saying. that's all you do is evaluate evidence. you can make a judgment on that. we'll standby what we've done. >> do you realize you're hanging all of your hopes on a child molester who's done unspeakable things to your son? >> there's just been so many things that paul shared with us that would have been impossible for him to know had he not been with johnny. >> letters from around the country that there are things that he says are from members of the alleged sex ring that kidnapped johnny gosch. >> you think we can help johnny? you think he's a live? >> i would think you'd be kicking the doors down to want to talk to him at this point. >> when the time is right, again, i will reiterate. we may well interview him. but it will be when it's time to do it.
>> it is a major cover-up. >> we can't get law enforcement help. this is where we need it. we can't take somebody to court without them and they know it. >> there was so much information put out r out about this case, and of course the mother would know more than anyone he had information that wasn't published. but i'm skeptical. i really am. i think these were conmen who knew how to take advantage of the situation. [ female announcer ] can it get any cleaner? with swiffer bissell steamboost... [ steam hisses ] guys! [ female announcer ] ...it can. introducing swiffer steamboost powered by bissell.
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molester surfaced and said he helped kidnap johnny. he claims an organized ring of pedophiles abducts children and forced them into a life of child pornography and prostitution and that it happened to him. >> "america's most wanted" was focused on missing children because our host, john, had his son abducted and killed. so we did a lot of stories about missing children. as the anniversary approached to johnny's abduction, that was one of the stories we wanted to look at. we didn't know who we were going after. and we had a missing child who had been missing for ten years. the f.b.i. was waving us off right from the very beginning saying these are not credible witnesses, we don't believe this information is valid. >> did these people, when they get ahold of young kids and stuff, they force them to do things, they photograph it, they film it, and the whole purpose of that is to blackmail them into staying with them or to split your mind up so that you
don't remember who you are. >> there were so many facts that he seemed to know that the only way paul bonacci knew those facts was if he had talked to johnny. >> paul claims to have seen johnny in 1986 on a trip to colorado where he was being kept by a man called the colonel. >> i guess he tried to run away from them one time and they branded him. >> he talked about what were pretty amazing accusations. and then these kids started calling us. >> noreen received a letter after our broadcast signed by jimmy. in the letter, gymmy claims he was abducted by the same people that took johnny. >> this one kid came forward who had the brand and was confirming these stories and started telling us about it. we went to colorado. he said i'll show you the house where they used to keep us. and there it was. >> so what happened here?
>> i almost couldn't do it. i couldn't go near the house because the memories flooded back. >> before we went in that building, i described it. and there was a little grate. we pulled the grate off of stuff and they looked under and were like oh, no. >> there's the hole. it's abandoned. we go underneath it and sure enough, there's this chamber dug out under the house with kids' initials carved under the wood. every time we found a clue, we ran into a brick wall. the owner of the house was a former prison guard who disappeared. the people who had composite drawings never became real people. we never could go after them as individuals. >> the johnny gosch has haunted
horrible, horrible picture of young children being used to provide sexual pleasure for adults. and in so many of the cases, very prominent adults. >> i was on the witness stand and i was asked during the questioning whether i had ever seen or talked to my son in all the years he had been missing. and the judge instructed me i would have to answer or i'd be in contempt of court. so i said once, i saw my son once. >> there was a knock on my door in the middle of the night. i went to the door, i was the only one there, and i could see a young man out in the hallway. i said who's there? he said it's me, mom, it's johnny.
it's me, mom, it's johnny. that was always his phrase rather than just saying it's johnny. so i let him in. i said let me call somebody to help. he immediately got very upset. and he said i can't stay. they'll kill me if they know i've been here. so i had a choice right then and there. i chose to listen. he shared some information about how they traffic the kids through the country, and then in a very short time it was over. he said, i have to go. >> johnny gosch coming home to see his mom, would love to have been contacted, would love to verify that. can't answer for why that didn't happen. >> she says she didn't tell anybody it. she didn't tell her mother. she didn't tell the police, which i thought was kind of odd. her explanation was that he asked not to have this put out because it would endanger him. that's the last thing you'd want.
you'd say something and all of a sudden you'd find out this boy is in daytona beaeep danger. >> it was very simple. my son asked me not no say anything. ♪ 5 packages addressed by toddlers ♪ ♪ that's a q ♪ 4 lightning bolts ♪ 3 creepy gnomes ♪ 2 angry geese ♪ and a giant blow-up snowman ♪ that kind of freaks me out [ beep ] [ female announcer ] no one delivers the holidays like the u.s. postal service. priority mail flat rate is more reliable than ever. and with improved tracking up to 11 scans, you can even watch us get it there. ♪ [ chicken caws ] [ male announcer ] when your favorite food starts a fight, fight back fast with tums. heartburn relief that neutralizes acid on contact and goes to work in seconds. ♪ tum, tum tum tum tums!
when i was in prison, i started getting visited by reverend john morrow from lincoln. i had a lot of hatred for all of the years of abuse. even more because of all the memories flooding my mind. i wanted to see these guys die in the most horrible way. i told him all of that. and then one time, he told me, he says you know what? you're never going to get any better until you learn to forgive, give up the bitterness, the anger, and the hatred. i remember going back to my cell saying i know that what he's saying is true.
>> and if you look closer at this one, there is a dark area pigment take. it is not a shadow. it's a birth mark that johnny always had up in the upper area of his chest. >> the hair texture looked similar, but the face was too small. we can scan in that entire image, isolate the face. but when we make it larger, it gets really worse and all the details we're looking for just aren't there. it wasn't a good candidate for a serious facial comparison. >> first of all, there's no birthmark on his chest and the picture doesn't everyone look like him. his feet were much larger than that even when he was kidnapped.
so even if he lost a lot of weight, your feet still stay the same length, so. >> we located a law enforcement agency in florida who has identified those specific pictures to say that was a case we worked. we've identified some of the individuals in those pictures. those pictures did not have johnny gosch in them. >> these boys were all from florida. this is a case that i worked in 1979. it was a case that involved several boys tied up and gagged. of course when i saw those pictures, there was no doubt in my mind that the subject was a pedophile. >> have you ever seen this before? >> i can't say that i remember that one, no. it was 33 years ago. i can't really recall this one.
>> those photographs are my son and, you know, it matters not to me if people think it isn't johnny. we know that it is. and the west des moines police are mistaken. what do you think happened to johnny? >> i don't have a clue. i mean, there's all of these options. whether a stranger came by, grabbed him, sold him, who knows? there are a lot of missing people in this country that they never get resolved.
>> when your best friend is taken away, it never ends. i know he's out there. my soul tells me he's there. >> you almost have a guilt on the way things turned out for you. >> you have to live with what if i could have done something more, what if, what if. i guess we live with what ifs all the time, don't we. >> here's this hour time period in 1982, and we have an individual that has never willingly come back to say, oh, ifls that person. the case was probably that simple to that person. if that person, today, would say i'd sure like to help noreen gosch understand what happened and come forward, i'd really like that to happen.
>> why on earth would johnny even want to come forward and be scrutinized like he's some kind of a specimen from another planet? whatever his life is now, assuming he's alive, it's working for him. sometimes the better decision for a parent is to analyze and do what's best for your child, not just what you want to have happen. and if that's what's best for johnny rather than stepping out and being the brunt of all of this, then he has to do that.
the right wing delivers a crazy 13. let's play "hardball." >> hello. i'm chris mathews in washington. you know, politicians on the right have done some disturbing and destructive things this year. they derailed every major legislative item they could, including legislation on gun control, immigration, the budget, and even workplace discrimination. when they did take up legislation, it looked like this -- more than 45 separate votes to kill the affordable care act. abortion laws cooked up by the extreme right. and countless measures