It's been two weeks since 11-month-old Lisa Irwin disappeared from her bedroom in Kansas City, and as is often the case in highly-publicized cases about missing children, the mother has become the subject of ugly suspicions. Though the police still haven't named any suspects, Deborah Bradley has now changed her story about when she last saw her daughter Lisa and revealed that she was drunk on the night of the apparent abduction.
In an interview with NBC News, Bradley, who was joined by Lisa's father Jeremy Irwin, said that she believes police may be on the verge of arresting her. She explained:
"Judging on how the questioning went, that's kind of the fear that I have ... The main fear is that if they arrest me, people are going to stop looking, and I'll never see her again, and I'll never know what happened.''
When Lisa first disappeared, Bradley said that she had checked on her at 10:30 p.m. Now she says that the last time she saw her daughter was 6:40 p.m. when she put her down for the night. Supermarket surveilance cameras show that she bought baby supplies and a box of wine in the afternoon, and she's revealed that she had "enough to be drunk" that night. However, she still insists that there's no possibility she harmed the girl while under the influence. "If I thought there was a chance, I'd say it. I don't think that alcohol changes a person enough to do something like that," she said.
Bradley says that during interrogations police have accused her of killing Lisa, and she failed a lie detector test when police asked if she knew where the girl was. Lisa's 8 and 5-year-old half-brothers say they heard noises that night, but their parents won't let police question them again. Bradley says she hasn't sat down with them and talked about what they heard, "specifically to not have to put them through anything else."
Investigators are forced to asked the parents of missing children horrible questions, and it's not uncommon for parents to feel like they're being treated like criminals. Just today, the mother of missing 5-year-old Arizona girl Jahessye Shockley said, "They're treating me like [a suspect] — the interrogations and the way I've been spoken to ... [They're] very disrespectful." Yet, the relationship between Bradley and authorities has deteriorated to the point that high-profile defense attorney Joe Tacopina has been brought in to defend her. (If the case becomes a full-on media shitshow, Tacopina will be prepared. He's defended Joran van der Sloot in the disappearance of Natalee Halloway, Michael Jackson in his molestation trial, and the NYPD cop recently acquitted of rape.) The fact that Bradley had been drinking doesn't make her guilty of harming her daughter, and as Tacopina points out, "She was willing to tell the truth about it, even if it didn't make her look great." The most tragic thing about the new developments in the case is that while they've fueled speculation about Bradley's possible involvement in the crime, they haven't led to any more leads in the search for Lisa.