Friday, January 18, 2002
Tuesday, January 15, 2002
Intrigued, he gave Dimond the go-ahead. Schleiff was rewarded in late November when she broke the story of authorities searching Michael Jackson 's Neverland ranch for evidence, the precursor to molestation charges filed against the pop star.
Dimond's work has put the network out front on what is certain to be one of the biggest legal stories of 2004 — no small matter when you're a news network devoted to crime and punishment.
Her tough reporting has also left Dimond vulnerable to charges that she's too identified with the prosecution, and that Court TV's coup could crumble if the case against Jackson does.
Jackson's arraignment on charges of molesting a boy under age 14 is scheduled for Jan. 16.
"There are a lot of people who adore him," Dimond said. "He's like Jesus Christ. I've become the vilified one, because I've dared to report it. I don't give my opinion. I put things in perspective."
Court TV has eagerly hyped its work on the story. In television's incestuous world, Dimond has appeared on several other networks as a Jackson expert. When reports surfaced about Jackson allegedly being treated roughly by Santa Barbara authorities, one of the first calls another news network made to check it out was to Dimond.
She was drawn in to Jackson's world a decade ago, when reporting for "Hard Copy" on the first molestation accusations against him.
Dimond, an Albuquerque, N.M., native, worked as a radio reporter in Washington in the 1980s before becoming bored with government news. She was a local TV reporter in New York, then landed at "Hard Copy."
"You hear the word `tabloid' now and it doesn't make people wrinkle up their nose in disgust the way it used to," she said. "I think that's because, whether they want to admit it or not, the networks have embraced a kind of populist journalism."
In her reporting, Dimond said she's been frozen out by Jackson's representatives, who don't return her calls.
She has pointedly cast doubt on contentions by the Jackson defense. For example, last February child welfare officials said they had been told by the alleged victim and his mother that nothing inappropriate had occurred, a story the family has since changed. Dimond said this initial investigation came before the boy told anybody, including his mother and therapist, about the alleged abuse.
Dimond has reported that the boy and his family were essentially held captive at Neverland for weeks. She questions Jackson's accusations that police roughed him up by saying he didn't appear in pain when waving to his fans.
Her reporting has been detailed and informed with an insider's knowledge that few others in television have matched.
"Obviously, what she has accomplished here is so superior to everyone else. She must be good and she is good," said attorney Brian Oxman, a Jackson family friend who has represented some of them in court.
Although he has high regard for her work, Oxman said Dimond's good sources in the prosecutor's office have blinded her to weaknesses in their case.
Dimond said she had heard from friends that Oxman spread rumors that she had an affair with Santa Barbara District Attorney Tom Sneddon — among the most vicious insults to a reporter. She denies any such impropriety.
"The only thing I've said is that's she's pretty cozy with the DA," Oxman said. "If someone thinks that means something else, I suppose people might interpret that to think there's something else going on. I don't know. I just know that she is very cozy with the DA."
Dimond said she doesn't mind people believing that she's tight with the prosecution.
"I've got sources everywhere," she said. "Let 'em (think that). They're not right. It's good to let people think they have you figured out."
Schleiff said he admires Dimond's reporting. A week after the Jackson story broke, Court TV expanded her role at the network to include a regular anchor job for "Hollywood at Large."
"I think she's been aggressive, I think she's been solid and I think she's been fair," he said. "I know she's been diligent."
Dimond won't reveal her opinion on Jackson's guilt or innocence.
"I've learned a lot that I've put on the air and learned a lot that I could never put on the air because I couldn't substantiate it," she said. "But I'm going to keep my opinion to myself."
She's never met Jackson. They had one close call: while waiting outside of a California arena where Jackson was to accept an award a few year ago, she spied him getting out of an SUV with tinted windows.
Accompanied by her "Hard Copy" crew, Dimond shouted a question at him. Jackson turned toward her, stared briefly, then walked away.
She feels sorry for Jackson and his inability to have a normal life.
"Look at him," she said. "Look at what he's done to himself. He must be so full of self-loathing to carve off the tip of his nose and plant things in his cheeks. My overwhelming feeling for him is pity."
Jackson's camp says the family of the alleged victim is out for the pop star's money. Dimond said it's possible the boy's mother, who has filed no civil suit seeking damages, is just waiting for the moment when she can profit the most.
"But that's not my information," she said.
Sunday, January 13, 2002
Diane Dimond is a modern day journalist who defies a category. She’s been called “A renaissance broadcaster” for her versatility on-air and “A reporter’s reporter” for her consistently high-quality investigative storytelling. Dimond’s greatest talent may be her ability to communicate complicated stories in an understandable, common-sense way.
Diane utilizes multi-media platforms to tell the stories she finds so fascinating. Her nationally syndicated weekly crime and justice newspaper column is distributed by Creators Syndicate and she maintains a column archive at her official website at www.DianeDimond.com . She is a frequent contributor of articles to the innovative news-based Internet web site The DailyBeast.com. In the field of radio Diane was co-host of Greenstone Media’s syndicated morning radio talk show in 2007. She can often be heard filling in on other major radio talk shows. Demos of this work can be found on Dimond’s website.
When there is a breaking crime story you can often see Dimond’s thoughtful commentary on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, Court TV (TruTV) and other cable outlets. She’s been a substitute anchor on cable as well. Dimond is also an accomplished narrator and voice over artist and is the voice of the long running “Disorder in the Court” on TruTV.
Diane Dimond may be best known for first exposing then explaining to the world the child molestation charges against Michael Jackson. Dimond’s coverage of Jackson’s criminal trial was seen by millions on Court TV, NBC’s Today Show, MSNBC, Larry King Live and news outlets worldwide. Her book on Jackson, Be Careful Who You Love: Inside the Michael Jackson Case, published by Simon and Schuster/Atria Books and released in November 2005, is an explosive tome detailing Dimond’s exclusive revelations from 1993 when she first broke the story – to the case 10 years later when, once again, Dimond was the first to report the charges against Jackson.
Diane’s latest book Cirque Du Salahi – Be Careful Who You Trust published by CreateSpace and available at Amazon.com, delves into the shoddy journalism that catapulted the erroneous “White House Gate Crashers” into the public square. The book provides an exclusive look at the couple at the center of the scandal, Michaele and Tareq Salahi, and dissects where the truth and the lies intersect in the saga. It’s also a scathing indictment of the Washington D.C. social/political scene as well as Reality Television - both those who appear in it and those who produce it.
Diane has been at the center of countless major news stories during her award winning career. She was the first to report the story of rape at the Kennedy compound in Palm Beach, Florida and to identify William Kennedy Smith as the accused. And Dimond has been praised for her hard-hitting interviews with a number of infamous prison inmates including: Pamela Smart, a school teacher serving a life sentence for enticing her high school lover to kill her husband; James Earl Ray, the convicted assassin of Martin Luther King Jr.; Jeffery McDonald, the convicted “Fatal Vision Killer”; Kenneth Bianchi, the convicted “Hillside Strangler” and Dimond is the only reporter to have ever interviewed Richard Allen Davis, the convicted killer of Polly Klass.
She began her broadcasting career in Albuquerque, New Mexico. At the fifty thousand watt KOB Radio she wrote and anchored the morning newscasts and her investigative series on corruption within the local sheriff’s department earned her the prestigious Silver Gavel Award from the American Bar Association.
In 1976, Dimond moved across the country to Washington, DC to anchor newscasts for National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” In 1980 she became Correspondent for the RKO Radio Network, assigned to cover Capitol Hill, the White House and various Washington agencies. She became the networks National Political Correspondent and covered the campaigns of both President Ronald Regan and his challenger Walter Mondale.
Finally making a move into television in 1986 Dimond’s first news job in television was at the flagship CBS Station in New York. At WCBS she earned several awards for covering such groundbreaking stories as the “Baby M” surrogate mother case.
Dimond went into syndicated television in 1990 when she became the investigative reporter for the program Hard Copy. Time Magazine cited Diane’s continuing coverage of the Michael Jackson story as among “The Best TV of ’93.” Dimond also made headlines when she acquired and aired the actual interrogation tape of OJ Simpson being questioned by the Los Angeles police department. She then anchored the nationally syndicated program EXTRA and made headlines with her expose of the deceptive practices of the Jerry Springer show, among other investigative reports.
In 1998 Diane moved to NBC and partnered with Geraldo Rivera to co-anchor CNBC’s nightly newscast, UpFront Tonight. Among other top-shelf stories she anchored extensive live reports from Washington on the impeachment proceedings against former President Bill Clinton. After moving to MSNBC Dimond hosted the series, “Missing Persons”, anchored major news blocks and, among other stories, covered the 2000 presidential campaign, traveling at various times with three of the candidates, George W. Bush, Al Gore and Ralph Nader. Dimond also became known as the correspondent who spent 35 straight days outside the Vice President’s residence in Washington as the nation awaited the final, controversial recount of the vote.
After the September 11th 2001 terror attack in New York City Diane anchored live programs on the Fox News Channel where she specialized in the network’s continuing coverage of the war on terrorism. Her live interviews with military and policy news makers were often quoted by other news organizations.
Diane Dimond lives in Rockland County, New York with her husband, fellow broadcast journalist and voiceover artist Michael Schoen.
Member in good standing of:
American Federation of Radio and Television Artists
War On Pedophiles By Diane Dimond
NY Times Article About Diane by Felicia R. Lee
Dimond Leads Coverage of Jackson Story By David Bauder (ap)
Tabloid-TV Queen Broke Jacko Arrest, Beats the Networks By Joe Hagan
Lee Jay Berman is recognized as a national and international leader in the field of mediation. Since 1994, he has been a full-time mediator, successfully mediating over 1,200 cases. He is on the mediation panels of the American Arbitration Association (AAA), and the CPR Institute’s National Panel of Distinguished Neutrals. He is a Fellow with the International Academy Mediators, a Dispute Resolution Expert for the United Nations Development Programme, and a Diplomat with the California Academy of Distinguished Neutrals.
Lee Jay is highly sought after as a trainer in the fields of mediation, negotiation and conflict management. He is Director of the “Mediating the Litigated Case” program for the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution* at the Pepperdine University School of Law, he is on the Advisory Counsel for the Harvard Negotiation Insight Initiative, and he teaches “Mediating the Complex Case” for the Institute for Conflict Management at Lipscomb University in Nashville. Lee Jay has also conducted mediation trainings for judges in Delhi, India, judges from The Kingdom of Jordan, mediators in post-war Croatia, for the AAA, and multiple bar associations, courts and mediation organizations. The inaugural ADR Director for the Santa Barbara Superior Courts, he also chaired or co-chaired the Training Committee for the ABA’s Section on Dispute Resolution from 2003-2007, and is a member of the California State Bar’s Standing Committee on ADR.
Mr. Berman enjoys a thriving commercial mediation practice, while continuing to meet the demand for his public and private sector training courses and public speaking invitations.
* Pepperdine Law School’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution was ranked #1 nationally by U.S. News & World Report once again in 2007, making Pepperdine #1 for four years in a row and six of the ten years in which they have conducted the survey.