NV-GOV: Gibbons' accuser to defend herself in press conference
by Gary Kilbride, Tue Oct 24, 2006 at 07:36:43 PM EDT
This is just the break Dina Titus needed. I've been anticipating it ever since Jim Gibbons' wonderfully stuffy officer and a gentleman presser last Thursday. A blurb today in the Las Vegas Review Journal says lawyers for Chrissy Mazzeo indicate she will hold a press conference Wednesday to defend herself.
If Mazzeo comes across as sincere, specific and credible there is potential for huge ongoing coverage and further scrutiny of Gibbon's version of what happened on October 13. Titus was basically hamstrung by the issue, unable to use it effectively in commercials since Mazzeo declined to press charges. The final debate last Friday was after the story broke but not televised in Las Vegas, and with only vague reference in one question to the incident. Titus has been lagging in the womens vote and independent vote compared to Democrats with poll leads, so this issue potentially impacts both areas.
I've seen some abysmal handicappers in this town but Gibbons and his handlers earn special bonehead status, hopefully in the form of November 7 failure. Mazzeo declined to press charges the day after the incident, implying she was intimidated by Gibbons' status. Gibbons could have shut up, and said his lawyer advised him not to comment. Instead, he unleashed a bullshit obnoxious press conference last Thursday, claiming total innocence and describing himself as an officer and a gentleman. Then his pitbull lawyer stormed to the podium with the most unappealing facial expressions imaginable and basically insulted Mazzeo for 10 minutes, calling her incoherent and asking how anyone could believe the story, and implying politically motivated timing. As I watched that presser unfold I was sure it could only backfire for Gibbons, possibly causing Mazzeo to defend herself publicly. I remember posting a comment in an MyDD open thread regarding that press conference, and how poorly it came across from a Gibbons standpoint. I'll be interested to see if Mazzeo references that Gibbons press conference in her comments tomorrow, particularly if it caused her to come forward.
Some of you may be unfamiliar with this story, in which Mazzeo, a 32-year-old cocktail waitress, sat with her friend at Gibbons' dinner table on a rainy Friday night two weeks ago, had some drinks and then walked together to a parking garage across the street. During dinner she says he described a boring marriage and played footsie under the table, putting his hand on her thigh and saying his hotel room was so close they could crawl there. Mazzeo claims he pushed her up up against the parking garage wall and made sexual advances. In three calls to 911 that night, obviously somewhat drunk, she provided her story, including three references in the third call to video cameras in the parking garage that would back up her story. Those cameras were reportedly not turned on, suspicious to say the least. The company that operates them refused to comment to the Las Vegas Sun. Gibbons was not questioned until the following afternoon, and says he did nothing other than help Mazzeo to her feet when she stumbled.
Here is a link with a summary of the case: http://www.lasvegassun.com/...
And here is a story recounting the police interviews: http://www.lasvegassun.com/...
BTW, Keith Olbermann named Gibbons the Worst Person in the World tonight, providing the varying accounts of this episode then spotlighting Gibbons' predictably idiotic conclusion, "gosh I learned an important lesson, never to offer a helping hand to anybody ever again.
And one weird aside, that some who clicked on the first link may have noticed. There is a high profile murder case here in Las Vegas with defendant Craig Titus, a bodybuilder. No relation, of course, but it's an unusual name and I'd feel better if it weren't plastered in the news every day in regard to murder.