November 30, 2009

Toobin: Why Tiger Woods may not be talking to police

Posted: 04:45 PM ET

New York (CNN) - State police in Florida planned Monday to further investigate a single-vehicle crash involving pro golfer Tiger Woods, they said.

That followed a police announcement Sunday that Woods had canceled a third interview with investigators.

Woods suffered minor injuries in the accident, which occurred early Friday in his luxury neighborhood near Orlando. In a statement issued Sunday afternoon on his Web site, Woods offered no details of his wreck, except to say he had cuts and bruises and was "pretty sore."

"This situation is my fault, and it's obviously embarrassing to my family and me," he said. "I'm human, and I'm not perfect. I will certainly make sure this doesn't happen again."

CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin spoke about why Tiger Woods might be delaying talking to police.

CNN: Why do you think Tiger Woods has canceled three interviews with police?

Jeffrey Toobin: Tiger Woods is under no legal obligation to speak with police. The Fifth Amendment gives everyone an absolute right to refuse to talk to them. He may be counting on the fact that if no new news emerges, everybody will move on.

CNN: Can the police do anything about it if Woods continues to refuse to talk to them?

Toobin: The police don't have a lot of options. If someone doesn't want to talk to you, you as a police officer can't do anything about it. In theory, they could get a search warrant, but you need probable cause that a crime took place, and at this point, I don't see anything that would justify it.

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Filed under: Tiger Woods

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Anne   November 30th, 2009 4:53 pm ET

Dave Zirin at the nation com

Today, Tiger Woods, the most famous, wealthy and most PR conscious athlete on earth, finally finds himself subject to scrutiny. But, similar to Clinton's scandal, it has more to do with his personal life than issues of substance. The media has staked-out his Isleworth home for round-the-clock coverage of a bizarre "car accident" involving his wife, a fire hydrant and a golf club that occurred this past week. The questions being posed are as breathless as they are weightless: "Were Tiger's facial lacerations the result of the car crash or an attack from his wife Elin?" "Is this about the rumored 'other woman' in New York City?" "Did Elin Woods smash the rear of his car with a golf club to rescue Tiger or was she smashing up the car as he pulled away?" One last question: who the hell cares? Granted, there is a "man bites dog" aspect to this story. In Woods's roughly fourteen years in the public eye, he has never even been caught littering. His image has been cemented as a man of ungodly intensity.

This squeaky-clean reputation has helped Woods become the richest athlete in history, the first billion-dollar man. His career course earnings are $92 million. Only when you factor in advertisements, corporate appearances and other off-course aspects of "Tiger Inc" does Woods reach billionaire status.

As the saying goes, behind every great fortune is a great crime. Following his car "accident" Woods's agent said that it is unclear whether he will attend his foundation's Chevron World Challenge Golf Tournament. In 2008, Chevron entered a five-year relationship with Tiger Woods' foundation under the guise of philanthropy. But if Woods had a shred of social conscience, this partnership would never have existed. Lawsuits have been issued against Chevron for dumping toxic waste all over the planet. Alaska, Canada, Brazil, Angola and California have all accused Chevron of dumping. Even worse, Chevron has a partnership with Burma's ruling military junta on the country's Yadana gas pipeline project, the single greatest source of revenue for the military, estimated at nearly $5 billion since the year 2000.

Ka Hsaw Wa, co-founder and executive director of EarthRights International, wrote in an open letter to Woods, "I myself have spoken to victims of forced labor, rape, and torture on Chevron's pipeline - if you heard what they said to me, you too would understand how their tragic stories stand in stark contrast to Chevron's rhetoric about helping communities." Chevron is underwriting a dictatorship but Tiger Woods apparently sees them as upstanding corporate partners.

Then there is Dubai, the site of the first Tiger Woods-designed golf course. Located at the southern coast of the Persian Gulf, Dubai has been a symbol of both economic excess, and most recently, economic collapse. It has been called an "adult Disneyland" - complete with indoor ski resorts and unspeakable human rights violations. As Johann Hari wrote in the Independent, it is a city that has been built over the last thirty years by slave labor. Paid foreign laborers work in more than 100-degree heat for less than three dollars a day. Dubai also has a reputation as ground zero of the global sex trade. The Tiger Woods Golf Course cost $100 million and Woods said nary a word about his benefactor's business practices. This is business as usual for Tiger who would sooner swallow a five-iron than take anything resembling a political stand.

Now that Woods appears to have been involved in a domestic dispute, the media is wondering if there is "another Tiger." They are desperate to pillory the man for his personal problems. It would be more appropriate if they took this opportunity to scrutinize him for the right reasons. Woods has every right to keep his personal problems personal. But when he makes deals that benefit dictatorships and unaccountable corporations, all in the name of his billion-dollar brand, he deserves no privacy.

Cocovelvet   November 30th, 2009 4:57 pm ET

Poor guy !! he must be the next bait as a victim for public scrutiny into why he had that crash. Just because you are Tiger Woods doesn't make you immune from causing a crash. Why does it look like everything will be blown out of proportion just out of this crash ??? Ofcourse Woods never had anything for the hungry media's negative reporting about I think its the time for them to really squeez him to find those negatives.

Leave him alone.... he said it already, he is human like anybody else and capable of making any humanly mistakes. GEEZZZ!!!!!!

Jim   November 30th, 2009 7:45 pm ET

We, as a society, and the Media must stop giving such attention seekers any of our time or thought. They should be investigated, brought up on charges and punished to the fulleszt extent of teh law. What they did was neither funny nor insignificant, but they don't deserve to be turned into scandalous celebrities by making entertainment of them!

Gerald Jolly   November 30th, 2009 7:46 pm ET

You would think that after all the money that Tiger Woods collected for doing absolutely nothing that he would be willing to tell the world everything they want to know about him.

Like what toilet paper that he uses.

Like why does he wear golf shoes when he is golfing.

Like where did he steal the golf clubs he uses.

Like where did he steal all those trophies that are in his trophy room.

Like how often does he get intimate with his wife every week.

Like explain where he got all the money from the welfare office.

As stupid as the above questions are, it is even more stupid for anyone to think they have the right to know about everything he did or does.

GEEEEEEEEEZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! What a bunch of morons idiots can be.

Dodie   November 30th, 2009 8:18 pm ET

@ Gerald Jolly


Lori - Justice For Michael   November 30th, 2009 9:02 pm ET

@Gerald– good points...

Now that the media no longer has Michael Jackson to kick around they are going after Tiger.....Sha'mon!

Marci C   November 30th, 2009 10:13 pm ET

The media makes me crazy. First off, how can anyone believe the Enquirer? They are a damaging spitefull publication because they have the power to make up stories and ruin peoples lives. I am sure that garbage has made Tiger's home life very stressful. What if they did get in a fight and he accidently crashed his car. Who cares! He didn't hurt anyone, it was an accident and it's no ones business but their own. Leave Tiger and his family alone. It is a private matter.

Gale Bizet   November 30th, 2009 10:13 pm ET

Tiger Woods
Leave him alone.
It is none of our damn business.

PAUL MUSTIN   November 30th, 2009 10:15 pm ET

MISSING THE POINT ON TIGER – he should talk to the police, even with cousel present and if he refuses to answer some questions. refusing to talk at all sends the wrong message to the public, especially the young fans – he sends the wrong message this way

Penny Fischer   November 30th, 2009 10:17 pm ET

About Tiger Woods, one questions WHO CARES. He was in a car accident with one vehicle no one was hurt except him and the police said it was not alochol related Again. WHO CARES? I admired him before and still do. For goodness sake, there are more important things happening in this world besides the fact that Tiger Woods was in an accident. BIG DEAL

Suzanne Sieg   November 30th, 2009 10:23 pm ET

Mr King,
Tiger Woods had an accident -He's human
Why should it be a crime?
Tiger Wood should not talk to anyone Mr King included
The media hounds need to go elsewhere and find a real story.


Bud   November 30th, 2009 10:25 pm ET

Why didn't air bags inflate??

june nicholas   November 30th, 2009 10:30 pm ET

why dont the press just leave tiger wood alone and let this cool down.

walt   November 30th, 2009 10:31 pm ET

why are you wasting time with those party crashers, when you have jesse in the green room?

B Gilbert   November 30th, 2009 10:33 pm ET

I understand why the Tiger issue is under so much scrutiny. However, the matter is really between Tiger, his wife and perhaps the police. The latter's involvement being due to the nature of car accident and Tiger being injured at the scene of the crash.

Tiger and his family should not be subjected to a media circus. He is wihtin his rights to choose to say nothing, is he not?. Am I missing something or do we still have a 5th amendment?

Is there perhaps more important news to report on? How about the tenuous economy, H1N1 and are the flu shots helping, etc.

Deborah Colson   November 30th, 2009 10:34 pm ET

Leave the man alone. I'm sure he has better things to do than talk to the press about something that does'nt concern them. There are several scenarios that descripe all circumstances – all of them none of anyone's business.

Tim Ryan   November 30th, 2009 10:38 pm ET

The guy is entitled to his privacy. This story is not even newsworthy if it wasn't Tiger. I disagree with the overzealous media spotlight. He is a sports figure, not an actor or entertainer. He doesn't play golf to be watched. He competes to win...

carol kesling   November 30th, 2009 10:49 pm ET

he is just making things worse by not making a WRITTEN STATEMENT by his publicist... it would all go away, but it is too late now !!!! and he does need to answer for damaging PUBLIC PROPERTY !!!!! thoses fire hydrants cost a lot of money...

Kimberly Owens   November 30th, 2009 11:00 pm ET

He should does all that is required of him and nothing more. The police and media don't like it when they cannot control and threaten you.

walt   November 30th, 2009 11:03 pm ET

larry, you appoligized to jesse and ben for not having enough time, well youwasted it on those party crashers. i told you.

A. Mason   November 30th, 2009 11:05 pm ET

I'd lay odds that Tiger wasn't the one driving that SUV,maybe his wife was and when she crashed into the fire hydrant,she probably freaked out,hit the tree,Tiger was the passenger , got injured . His wife panicked ,got tthat golf club out of the suv,knocked out the window,pulled him out of the vehicle... she thought,OMG,there goes my meal ticket!!! bout this-Elin smacked him in the chops,ran out of the house,Tiger tried to catch her,she got behind the wheel ,Tiger hopped in and tried to stop her-but got jacked up...I'm just sayin' In all seriousness,I have no clue as to what happened-I just wish Tiger the best.

Patrick   November 30th, 2009 11:14 pm ET

NEWS-Tiger Woods has entered treatment; it's called the Fuzzy Zoeller treatment.

John H.   December 1st, 2009 12:51 am ET

So much common sense advice in this subject. I agree with the majority here. What happened to Tiger Woods? None of our business. Look for some more earth shaking subjects to concern ourselves about.

Rose G.   December 1st, 2009 1:16 am ET

Any information about the Tiger Woods incident given to the news media and tabloids would be taken out of context. The news media would distort the truth and it won't be the firt time. It is non of our business and all should leave Tiger and his family alone. EVERYONE SHOULD MIND THEIR OWN BUSINESS!

Cynthia   December 1st, 2009 1:24 am ET

Live the guy alone. He's not perfect! So what if he can't drive...people he's part ASIAN.

Mary Stephen   December 1st, 2009 1:37 am ET

Ditto to Gale B. and the majority of the other comments – it is absolutely none of our business.

Tom Joyce   December 1st, 2009 1:42 am ET

Boy I have always admired Tiger, but if the first comment from Dave Zirin at the nation com via Anne regarding sponsorships and advertisements is true I will have to revise my view of him. If he is supporting abusive and environmentally damaging companies for money I have no respect for him. I will check this out myself though – I don't believe much of anything I read in the media anymore.

As for the wreck, the media uproar over that is crazy; it’s sensationalism pure and simple. Remember news media is a business and must make a profit. Sensationalism sells and the bigger a celebrity the bigger the profit.

brad   December 1st, 2009 1:48 am ET

Obviously most people across the world are not familiar with the exclusive multi-millionaires only where he lives, which is Islesworth in Windermere, Fla. Actually this is stiil in Orange county (Orlando), but they have their own internal police force, guards at the gate with glocks as well as security cameras everywhere. By the time all this went down, the Orange County Sheriffs office, if allowed through the gates, was history. The list of super wealthy sports and entertainment stars that live there is a who's who list of the best. This will be buried soon and and the Florida Highway Patrol can't even have access! Maybe Obama or the FBI can gain access, otherwise, forget it. I know, I am very familiar with the area as beeing a 30 year area local

Mary Decatur,IL   December 1st, 2009 2:27 am ET

Apparently left my first message in wrong subject/topic–anyway...why don't the media and paparrazi move on to more important matters such as...the policemen that were shot by someone granted clemency?! ;the homeless and the hungry; worry about the combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, etc,etc. Or how about the couple that made it into the White House uninvited and through security? Stop giving them their 15 min of fame also. I'm a huge Tiger fan and maybe he was simply going ouy at that time of night so no one would bother him!! He admits it's his fault, he made a mistake, he's the only one who was injured so for God's sake let it be. Find something more important to worry about. I watched the CNN Heroes Honorees the other night..great show and wonderful people. Let's spend more time on their causes and dedication and help them change the world!!!

Mel Eiteljorge   December 1st, 2009 2:48 am ET

How badly was Tiger injured? We don't know that, and it could be the reason he is "hiding" from press and the police. The 911 tape is pretty scary. His recent posts might have come from a lawyer or from a family member. He might very well be suffering, and thus hiding.

Idzan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia   December 1st, 2009 9:09 am ET

Ladies mote well. There's more use to the golf glub than putting at the greenways.
Elin thinks it's par for the course.
Tiger is now below par.
And we should all stayoff the course.
Let them solve their probems.

Gerald Jolly   December 1st, 2009 2:05 pm ET

Lets see.

A world reputed top news reporter Ha! Ha! Ha! The Inquirer, claims that Tiger Woods is having an affair with a night club hostess, the report gives dates as to when that was supposedly have happened, the problem is, that on the day when this affair alledgedly happened the two were half a world appart.

Now it is well known that Tiger can hit a ball as far as anyone else in the world, but here lies the problem, is it possible for him to have an intimate trist with a woman when she is 4,000 miles away.
We know that Tiger can almost create a miracle on a golf course, but c/mon folks "SEX AT 4,000 MILES AWAY" even the best of the best would say that it's not possible.

What most of the "MORONIC IDIOTS" who love to "BASH" some of our most gracious and giving heroes, is that they are not familiar with the constitution of our country. "THE FIFTH AMENDMENT" provides everyone in our country the right to refuse to incriminate themselves based on the "WHIM" of some glory seeking "DUMMY"

The COPS are wrong to pursue this matter, and would be much better thought of if they spent more time investigating "CROOKS" "CHILD MOLESTERS" "MURDERERS" "FRAUD ARTISTS" and "ROBBERS"

As for the National Inquirer it has been reported that they print their RAG on already used "TOILET PAPER"


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