Baby Lisa's Parents Get Top Defense Lawyer Joe Tacopina

PHOTO: Lisa Irwin was last seen around 10:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3, 2011, when her mother put her to bed.
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High-profile New York defense attorney Joe Tacopina is the lastest addition to the team of people representing the Missouri parents of missing 11-month-old Lisa Irwin.

Tacopina's roster of clients includes Joran van der Sloot's Aruba trial in the disappearance of Natalee Halloway, Michael Jackson in his molestation trial, and the New York police officer acquitted of charges of raping an intoxicated woman, among many others notable cases. It is unclear who has retained him or who is paying for his service.

Tacopina defended Lisa's parents Deborah Bradley and Jeremy Irwin at a Kansas City news conference today, and maintaining that they were not involved in the disappearance of their daughter.

"I stand here to ferociously accept their presumption of innocence," he said.

Tacopina defended Bradley's revelation from today that she had been drinking on Oct. 3, the night Lisa disappeared, and may have been drunk.

"She was willing to tell the truth about it, even if it didn't make her look great," Tacopina said. "I think that goes to her credit. It's her being truthful."

Baby Lisa's Mother Changes Alters Her Story

He blamed Bradley's distraught state for her change in the timeline of events on the night that Lisa disappeared. For the past two weeks, she has been saying that the last time she saw Lisa was when she put her to bed at 10:30 p.m. Today, Bradley said she put her daughter to sleep at 6:40 p.m.

"On a normal night, when putting your kids to bed, you're not exactly clocking the time," Tacopina said. "She's a mother who is in a high state of trauma who trembles every day and cries. If her recollection isn't what it should be with certain times, I don't think we can be too hard on those inconsistencies, if they are inconsistencies at all."

"I don't recall under recent history anyone under this umbrella of suspicion being so forthright and outgoing, warts and all," Tacopina said. "They're eager because they don't feel they have anything to hide."

Tacopina said that the couple will not be doing any more television or radio interviews for the time being. He expressed his belief that the focus needs to stay on finding Lisa.

Tacopina said multiple times that he did not want to criticize the police investigation, but did express a desire for a more "boots on the ground" approach and said he wished certain unnamed things would have been done earlier.

"Do your investigation and start right here," Tacopina said indicating Bradley and Irwin standing behind him. "It's absolutely normal to start right here. But don't come to a conclusion before having the evidence and then looking for evidence."

Private investigator Bill Stanton announced that he will be leaving Kansas City today, but will continue to be involved in the investigation. He emphasized Friday's announcement of a $100,000 reward for information leading to Lisa or a conviction. "That is valid. That is real," Stanton said about the reward.

Earlier today, Bradley admitted that she was drinking the night of her daughter's disappearance two weeks ago.

"I was drinking, but it has nothing to do with my daughter's disappearance," Deborah Bradley told "Good Morning America."

The questions about whether she had been drinking arose after the discovery of a Missouri grocery store surveillance video from the day of Lisa's disappearance that showed Bradley buying boxed wine. But the mother is adamant that her drinking is unrelated to her missing daughter.

"It doesn't explain anything because that had nothing to do with anything," Bradley said.

In an interview with NBC's "Today," Bradley conceded that she drank "enough to be drunk" the night Lisa disappeared.

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