CBS Airs More McNair Dirt, Police Beat Them To The Punch

Armen Keteyian promised more lurid details about the Steve McNair murder case today, but the Nashville Police stole his thunder by releasing their own updated report that basically says—"Yeah, we already knew all that."

Most of the CBS investigation into the murder-suicide centered around the gun that was allegedly used to commit the crime. When they first announced a resolution to the case back in July, police said that Sahel Kazemi left work for two hours on Thursday, July 2, and bought a handgun from a man she barely knew. Keteyian reported yesterday that she actually left work on July 1, so that theory could not be correct. Then today, they unveiled phone records that show that Kazemi and Adrian Gilliam, the man who allegedly sold her the gun, were more than just acquaintances. There were over 200 cell phone calls and text messages between the two in the three weeks before the murder, including 49 the day before she died.

So now you're probably thinking—Gilliam did it! He told both the police and CBS News that he barely knew Kazemi and that was clearly a lie. He also told CBS that he sold Kazemi the gun on Friday, July 3, which contradicts the earlier police statements. In fact, the only reason to believe that any gun sale ever took place at all is because Gilliam said it did.

However, late last night the Nashville PD—knowing what CBS was about to report—released a 14-page "case summary" (you can read it here) that basically claims that none of this is news to them. Gilliam had already changed his story weeks ago. Police had already seen the cell phone records, they already knew that Gilliam and Kazemi were friends, and they already knew that the gun was sold on Friday and not Thursday. They just didn't bother to tell anyone else, because Gilliam is on trial for illegal weapons charges and they didn't want any interference with that case.

So the claim that CBS has "blown open the murder case" is a little suspect. There's a lot of circumstantial evidence that seems to suggest that the police investigation was not entirely thorough and their explanation of what happened in that week is definitely not airtight. There's probably some evidence and some people that could use another look. But nothing that's been dug up here directly contradicts the larger narrative of the case and there's still no alternate theory for how McNair and Kazemi could have been killed. Furthermore, the police summary also reveals the name of another McNair girlfriend who claims she was being followed by someone driving a car that could have been Kazemi's. They also released a string of text messages sent to McNair just before his death where Kazemi repeatedly complains about "stress."

Kudos to Keteyian for raising these questions—and getting the answers—but when it's all said and done, we're really just right back where we started. We'll probably never be able to see the full picture of what happened to Steve McNair, but unless police are hiding even more from us, it seems very doubtful that anyone else will ever be implicated in his death.

New Evidence in Steve McNair Murder [CBS News]
McNair Case Summary [Nashville Police]
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