CNN BREAKING NEWS
Sniper Suspects Being Transferred to State Custody
Aired November 7, 2002 - 13:04 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR: We begin with breaking news in the sniper attacks on two fronts. First, Atlanta police investigating a case that may be linked to the Washington area sniper shootings, and secondly, CNN has learned that the two suspects, John Allen Mohammad and John Lee Malvo, have been transferred from federal to state custody in Virginia.
Kelli Arena breaking the news for us and she joins us live from Washington.
Kelli, not sure where to begin on these two fronts. Why don't you tell us?
KELLI ARENA, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, I will start with what I know, which is that officials have dismissed a federal criminal complaint against John Allen Mohammad, and we're told by sources that both the 17-year-old John Lee Malvo and John Allen Mohammad have been transferred from federal custody over to state custody in Virginia, and that they are now being housed in the jail in Alexandria, Virginia, this jail well-known to us, where Zacarias Moussaoui is also housed there. It's a very high security jail.
Now, interesting, not exactly sure why that was -- that facility was chosen, because we're also told by sources that there will be a split in terms of where these individuals are headed next.
We're told that John Lee Malvo will be facing trial first in Fairfax County. That is where Linda Franklin was killed outside the Home Depot.
If you remember, she's the FBI analyst, the mother of two children, expecting her first grandchild a few months from now, a breast cancer survivor. That case will be heard, we're told, in Fairfax County. You're looking now at Linda Franklin.
The second part of this is that John Allen Muhammad will be tried in Prince William County. That's where Dean Harold Myers was shot at the Sunoco gas station. This is an engineer that lived in Gaithersburg that stopped to fill up his tank before he headed home, and was shot dead there.
Now, what we can assume is that the evidence has led the Justice Department to make this decision. We're not exactly sure what the determining factors were in terms of the evidence that was provided. We do know that Attorney General John Ashcroft Has met for two days in a row with FBI director Robert Mueller to go over that evidence. He said that any decision would be fact driven. I must underscore here, Martin, we have not heard any of this officially from the Justice Department. We are expecting to hear something later on today. Hopefully they'll clear it all up and tell us why these decisions have been made.
But right now those two alleged snipers are sitting in Alexandria, Virginia in a high-security jail there, and we'll get you more as we get it.
SAVIDGE: All right, Kelli. We always appreciate that. The Atlanta connection, what about that one there?
ARENA: Well, that I am told. I will tell you, I haven't had an opportunity to make any phone calls on that front. All I've been told is there is another shooting being investigated, evidence there is being gathered to see if there's any connection to the sniper attacks. As you know, Martin, there have been many other jurisdictions that have done the same Louisiana, Montgomery, Alabama, Tucson, Arizona, gone back at looked back at evidence from shootings there.
Some have come up with connections. Others are still investigating. I cannot tell you definitively what is going on right now, though, in this latest evidence-gathering process.
SAVIDGE: There's enough going on for right now. Kelli Arena, thank you very much, live from Washington. As we say, another day, another turn in that story.
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