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Mine Collapse; Families Wait for News of Trapped Miners; More Details Emerge of Exorcism Death; Protestant Exorcist Travels Country

Aired August 11, 2007 - 22:00   ET


SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Larry. Thank you very much.
And for those of you who are that are tuning in to see our 360 special on Marines in Iraq, our apologies to you. We're postponing it so we can bring you breaking news on the search for those six coal miners trapped now for nearly five days deep inside a Utah mountain.

Now just a short time ago, officials and company executives spoke to reporters. It was a little bit confusing, to be honest, but CNN's Gary Tuchman has managed to do some additional reporting that clears things up. Bottom line, it does not look good.

Gary joins us now from the scene.

Gary, good evening.

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good evening to you, Soledad. And the news is very mixed. You're right. It's very hard to ascertain if we should have any hope.

The only good news is that within a couple of hours we do believe a video camera will be lowered into the mine within the area where the six men are believed to be.

What we have learned tonight is the area where they are is much bigger than we thought and there's a very good chance the video camera will not be able to see the men who are down there, even if they're alive.

Now, the camera does have bright lights and is very technologically advanced.


BOB MOORE, VICE PRESIDENT, MURRAY ENERGY GROUP: We would be able to maneuver the video camera 360 degrees and vertically 90. Well, it's a combination. It's audio/video and it will be able to rotate -- we can rotate it 360 degrees.


TUCHMAN: Now, here's the problem. We envision, I think many of you probably envision, that these six men are all huddled together in a small area if they're alive. But what we've learned tonight is that these men are now believed to be in an area that is up to 1,000 feet long and 80 feet wide. And it's also believed they're not all together, but they had time to start running when the collapse came, so they may be in different areas, separated by debris. And this camera only has the range of 100 feet in each direction.

So the camera may ultimately just be utilized to see how much damage there is under the ground.

Also discouraging earlier this morning, late last night, a microphone was lowered into a different hole. The microphone was lowered to hear if there were any sounds. The work was stopped inside the mine to see if there was any peeps whatsoever. No sound. So what the authorities here thought is that the microphone and the drill started bending in the wrong direction and ended up in a void area of the mine where men don't work and that's why they didn't hear any sounds.

Well, they have now found out something differently, that the microphone was -- did go 85 feet away from where they wanted to be, but in the general area where the men are believed to be, but there were technical problems and the microphone did not work.

Also very discouraging, there was a sensor there to measure the oxygen in the area where the men are believed to be. The measurement of the oxygen is currently seven percent. That is way below the level needed to live.

The hope among the authorities here is that these men are in a different part of that 1,000 foot area and that the levels are higher. But in the level where that microphone and where that drill went down, if they're in that area, they cannot possibly live.

Also discouraging, the work underground is very slow. Ultimately, if they find out these men are alive or even if they don't find out these men are alive, they have to try to rescue them through the inside of the mine.

And I spent time two nights ago inside of the mine, watching them dig tons of coal and rubble and debris and try to get it out of the way. They're still about 1,900 feet away from the section of the mine where the men are believed to be. This will take several days more, maybe up to a week. It's very slow, tense and difficult work.


MOORE: And we're making slow progress there because it is so labor intensive. Incredibly labor intensive. Our men and our women are working their hearts out to make progress and get back to their miners.


TUCHMAN: So, as you can see, there is an uphill battle here. The fact is they will keep working very hard because there's absolutely no proof that these men are dead.

But the advance we were hoping for, the development we were hoping for this weekend, to find out if they were alive or even to find out if they were dead, it's very likely we won't find out because that camera may not see these people.

O'BRIEN: The wait has to be absolutely brutal for the family members. I know you've spoken to some of them. What are they telling you, Gary?

TUCHMAN: Yes, I mean, it's -- they're keeping the faith. They're keeping hope. I mean, the families are all together. Every day the authorities of the mine meet with them. And they say they even laughed a little bit tonight.

But it's fair to say that perhaps maybe they don't understand all the intimate details because the reporters here didn't understand until today that this is a 1,000 foot area that these men are in.

Now, one particular group of people we wanted to talk to, see how they felt, we haven't been able to talk to and that's the four miners who escaped from this.

There were 10 miners, Soledad, inside the mine, when this collapse happened. Four got out. We wanted to talk to some of those four men, but they have told us and other miners have told us they've been advised by the mine not to talk.

Now, we asked Bob Murray, the owner of the mine, if these miners could talk, and he said, hey, they're free Americans. They can talk -- we've advised them not to talk to protect their privacy.

So we wanted to talk to the miners, particularly about one thing that Bob Murray said. He said the four miners who got out were never in any danger.

But today we talked to the wife of one of the miners, one of the four miners who got out of that mine when it collapsed and she begged to differ a little bit.


TUCHMAN: And was he in the mine when this happened?


TUCHMAN: And what happened to him?

WARD: He just barely got out. He was on his way out of the mine, I believe, when it collapsed.

TUCHMAN: So tell me -- he was actually in a truck, right?

WARD: Right.

TUCHMAN: What happened to him when the mine collapsed? WARD: I guess the wind blew him and blew his truck sideways a little bit and he got out and seen that it was just dust and rubble everywhere.

TUCHMAN: Was he hurt?


TUCHMAN: How far was he from the six men who are trapped?

WARD: I couldn't tell you.

TUCHMAN: I mean, how much -- ho much time had gone by then since he -- he was with them, right?

WARD: He had -- he was away from them at the time, right before. But he had been down there with them.

TUCHMAN: I see. So he wasn't that far away from them when this happened?

WARD: No. I'd say three minutes.

TUCHMAN: How scared was he?

WARD: Very.

TUCHMAN: What did he tell you when he got home?

WARD: Nothing. We hugged and cried. I'm very, very grateful, very grateful.

TUCHMAN: How far was he from where the mine collapsed?

WARD: Like where?

TUCHMAN: Like in other words, when it happened, how close was he to where the coal had come down?

WARD: From what I understand, he was pretty close. I believe that an angel just tugged him by the ear or something and pulled him and told him to get in his truck and just drive.


O'BRIEN: With that litany of bad news, Gary, how is it possible that everyone continues to hold out hope, frankly? Continues to be optimistic?

TUCHMAN: I mean, that's what's an amazing part of this, Soledad. Because, you know, being down in that mine, you see there's lot of rubble, but it wouldn't all fall and cover every part of this 1,000 foot by 80 food area. I mean, there are certainly parts of it that would be bare of any of this damage. So if one of these six or two or all six were able to be lucky enough to not be where the material fell, they could be alive. But the problem is the camera may not be able to spot them. So we may not ever know until they're able to get through the inside of the mine and that's still days away. And the problem we're dealing with here is the food and water issue. Because through those holes they also want to put food or water. But if they don't see the men, dropping the food there's not going to do any good.

O'BRIEN: Well, it continues to be a race against time, doesn't it, Gary?

Gary Tuchman for us this evening. Thanks, appreciate the report.

According to federal officials, the Crandall Canyon Mine has a middle of the record safety record.

But according to a source who knows the mine up close, there were some immediate concerns leading up to the collapse. And both miners and their supervisors knew about it.

With that, here's CNN's Ted Rowlands.


TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Trapped miner Manuel Sanchez said he was concerned about safety inside one section of the Crandall Canyon Mine in the weeks leading up to the collapse. That's what a family member has told a local newspaper.

And now a source with intimate knowledge of the conditions of the mine tells CNN Sanchez wasn't alone, that other miners were also apprehensive about working in the area of the collapse.

The source, who won't go on camera, says the six trapped miners were working in an area called 7 Belt, the deepest part of the mine. And he tells CNN that for weeks before the collapse, the floors in that part of the mine were heaving or buckling up from intense pressure. He says supervisors knew of the problem.

And the source says several miners, including Manuel Sanchez, were getting very concerned.

(on camera): Any reason why this miner would have been nervous going into that particular section?

BOB MURRAY, CEO, MURRAY ENERGY CORP.: No. I have no idea. I -- I've never heard that. I have no idea. It's probably a rumor. And I'm not going to respond to rumors. I can tell you that if any of my management or any worker here had ever seen that -- said that to me, I would say, yes, I was told that. No, I don't know a thing about that, sir, and that's the truth.

ROWLANDS (voice-over): If the miners were so afraid, why didn't they complain? Several miners we've talked to in this area say complaining means you lose your job.

MURRAY: If you're getting that from the community, it's coming from other mines because it don't operate that way.

PAUL RIDDLE, FORMER MINER: Always profits before safety. That's my opinion, my feeling and my experience.

ROWLANDS: Paul Riddle used to work in one of Bob Murray's mines. Riddle says miners who worked for Murray are sometimes forced to push the envelope when it comes to safety and are afraid to speak up for fear of losing their high-paying jobs.

RIDDLE: I'm not the only one. There are many, many, many people that feel this way and are afraid to speak out.

ROWLANDS: The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration plans to conduct an investigation into exactly what happened and the conditions of the mine leading up to the collapse. The mine's owner is confident his company will not be blamed.

MURRAY: There will be nothing in the investigation that will show that Murray Energy or Utah American or the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration did a thing wrong. It was a natural disaster.


O'BRIEN: Bob Ferriter joins us now. He is the director of the mine safety program at the Colorado School of Mines.

Oh, I'm sorry. Forgive me, Ted. I -- I see you right there. Let me ask you a quick question. You talked about the investigation there. When do you expect this investigation in fact is going to start?

ROWLANDS (on camera): Well, there are teams of investigators already here on the ground, but they're not going to begin this investigation until the rescue efforts, as you can imagine, are over.

However, they are assembled and they are vowing that they will turn over every stone and they will look deep into the cause of this and look at the condition of the mine before this. The Utah -- the state of Utah's governor also is vowing there will be a complete investigation to find out what caused this and again, the condition of the mine before the collapse.

O'BRIEN: All right. Ted Rowlands for us.

Ted, thanks.

Let's turn now to Bob Ferriter. He is the director, as I was saying, of the mine safety program at the Colorado School of Mines.

Nice to see you, sir. Thanks for talking with us.

A moment ago as you heard in Ted's piece, he was talking to some miners who say they were concerned about an area called 7 Belt because the floors were heaving or buckling. Would that be consistent with a mine that was precollapsed, frankly? BOB FERRITER, COLORADO SCHOOL OF MINES: A heaving floor, or floor heave as we call it, is an indication that your pillars are taking a tremendous amount of load and the load is driving the pillars down into the floor and the floor relieves itself by raising up. So it's a sign of instability in that particular working area, yes.

O'BRIEN: Also in Ted's piece, we heard from a man who said he used to work in the mine and he said it was always profit before safety.

Does that, in your mind, define the industry -- go for the money, worry about the safety of the people who work there last?

FERRITER: No, it does not. I think there are -- the majority of the operators in the coal industry today are very aware of safety. They protect their miners. They know that if they don't have miners, they don't mine any coal. They want a safe operation because a safe operation actually -- studies have shown that it increases production.

And if a miner is concerned about the safety conditions, there are several avenues under the Mine Safety and Health Act that he can pursue to bring these to MSHA's attention so that there are outside people come in and look at it.

There is a MSHA hotline that the number is published and the phone is checked daily. He can leave a number there and have them call back and they will do an investigation. They have what is called a miner's rep at every mine. If it is a union mine, the union safety committee man is the gentleman that they should go to. And he can bring that to mine management's attention. And if they don't pay attention to him, then he has the obligation, really, to go to MSHA and ask them to look at it.

O'BRIEN: In other words, they have some recourse.

Let me take a moment to ask you about some of these rescue efforts now. And the press conference, frankly, was a little bit confusing, but we -- it seems that the 2 1/2-inch drill was -- was off course slightly from its target.

They found out that the oxygen level looks like it was about 7 percent. What does that tell you?

FERRITER: What does that tell me? The minimum oxygen level where an individual can breathe and can live is 16 percent. If you are in 7 percent oxygen for more than just a few minutes, you will not live. You will not survive. I'm sorry to tell you that, but 7 percent does not support human life.

O'BRIEN: Bob Murray, the owner of the mine who has been holding some of these press conferences, said that the microphone that they've been listening -- we've all been waiting for, frankly, seemed to have broken. Obviously, that would explain a lack of communication. So do we have to basically wait until those cameras get in there before we're going to be able to figure out if these guys are alive or not? FERRITER: Yes, that's the next step is to get the cameras in and hopefully they have enough light because I've done that in my past experience, put video cameras into mine caverns and you have to have some pretty powerful lights to see any distance at all in there.

O'BRIEN: Even a space that big?

FERRITER: Pardon me?

O'BRIEN: Even a space that big, 1,000 feet across?

FERRITER: A space that big would take a tremendous amount of light to take and light it up so that you could see in there.

O'BRIEN: Bob Ferriter, the director of the Mine Safety program at the Colorado School of Mines. We appreciate your time tonight. Thank you very much.

FERRITER: You're welcome. And my sympathies to the families.

O'BRIEN: Oh, absolutely. We join you very much in that, sir.

We want to show you, in fact, some pictures now of four of the six missing miners. We'd show you the other two if we had pictures of them. These truly are the faces of the story and of the people in and around Crandall Canyon there, obviously so much more than that.

Let's turn to Nicole Jones because she knows these men. She joins us now.

Nicole, we appreciate your time. Thanks for talking to us.

Tell me a little bit about some of these -- these men. Are they experienced miners?

NICOLE JONES, KNOWS TRAPPED MINERS: some of them have had a lot of years experience.

O'BRIEN: How well do you know them?

JONES: They were -- I worked with five of the men that are underground at the moment. I know them mostly by voice and name. I used to talk on the mine phones all the time, communication between the miners. And that's how I knew them.

O'BRIEN: We had a piece just a moment ago that talked a little bit about this area, 7 Belt. And I understand that you know that area, you've worked in that area. Were there ever any concerns that either you had or that anyone ever talked to you about, about that area?

JONES: OK, I didn't actually work in 7 Belt. I worked at the computers. But I -- they were working on that before I left. They weren't actually in that area. So -- and I haven't heard anybody say anything about being concerned in that area.

O'BRIEN: There are other...


JONES: I hadn't spoke to...

O'BRIEN: Go ahead, I'm sorry. Forgive me, Nicole.

JONES: It's OK. I hadn't spoke to any of the miners for a while, so I wouldn't know exactly at the time in the 7 Belt area what was going on there.

O'BRIEN: All right, you may not know.

Now, there was a former miner who we spoke to who said that sometimes people are frankly afraid to speak up because they might lose their job, that that was sort of the tenor of the place. Does your experience support that or no?


O'BRIEN: Can you give me an example?

JONES: I believe -- I just believe that the guys would worry about losing their jobs if they said they were afraid to go in. There was usually a quota that was supposed to be made and when the quotas weren't made, there usually were problems. I wasn't in a management position to know exactly what problems, but quotas needed to be made.

O'BRIEN: So when you say problems, what exactly do you mean?

JONES: If they don't meet their quota, if they didn't get enough coal out, then problems occurred.

There was a major layoff in December because there was one of the mines that didn't meet its quota.

O'BRIEN: Did you ever have an experience where somebody was afraid about any part of the mine who said, well, I'm not going to bring it up, I'm not going to call the number that we heard earlier to express my concerns because I'll lose my job?

JONES: No, I've not had anybody say that exactly.

O'BRIEN: Did this mine, Nicole, have a certain reputation for putting pressure on people?

JONES: Well, I don't know. I was only there a little while with Mr. Murray. And I just got the impression from the guys that they were pressured more.

O'BRIEN: Have you been talking to the family members? How are they doing?

JONES: I haven't spoke with them. I'm not sure. I'm sure it's just very hard. They are all up at the school and I -- I don't know. I just feel so sorry for them. O'BRIEN: It's a horrible time for them, isn't it? Nicole Jones, talking with us tonight. Thank you, Nicole. We appreciate you joining us this evening.

We had a chance to find out some interesting facts about mining in America. Here's a little bit of the raw data tonight. Last year there were more than 363,000 miners in the U.S., 123,000 of them were coal miners. There are nearly 15,000 mines of all types throughout the country. In 2006, more than 140,000 citations and orders were issued to mining companies, leading to more than $35 million in fines.

Three construction workers died today at a coal mine in south western Indiana, operated by the Gibson County Coal Company. The three workers were being lowered in a bucket when they fell out. And then they tumbled 500 feet down a ventilation shaft to their deaths.

And as we wait for the final chapter in Utah, it's certainly worth remembering that these stories can end in all sorts of ways. You'll remember Quecreek really ended in a miracle. The disaster at Sago Mine seemed briefly like it might be a miracle too, but then people had their hopes shattered in the harshest way imaginable. And then finally, they witnessed a medical wonder, one young miner's survival against all odds.

Well, tonight, we're going to bring you his story and others as well in "Sago Mine Tragedy," a 360 special edition. And that's coming up at the top of the hour.

When we come back in just a moment. Gary Tuchman's trip deep into the mine, right up to the front lines of the search.

And also tonight, these stories.


O'BRIEN (voice-over): Name that tune.


Find out why Democrats have a Spanish song in their hearts and why Rudy...

RUDY GIULIANI (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I probably could have said it better.

O'BRIEN: ... is singing a humbler tune when it comes to his work on 9/11.

"Raw Politics."

Exorcism in America.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was trying to squeeze the demons out of the child?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Correct. O'BRIEN: A little girl's nightmare. Her grandfather's death and where they fit in a century's old ritual that hasn't gone away, only on 360.


O'BRIEN (on camera): In Utah, the race to reach six trapped coal miners continues as their families cling to hope. At this very moment, rescue workers are drilling a second hole into the area where the miners are believed to be trapped.

When they're done, they plan to lower a camera deep inside that mine.

Meantime, other rescue teams are inching their way toward the men, pushing through tons of rubble in the mineshaft.

Yesterday, CNN's Gary Tuchman saw for himself just what they're up against.


TUCHMAN (voice-over): We entered the Crandall Canyon Mines with the same tunnel the six trapped workers went through.

A three-mile journey in a small truck. It would take about a half hour, in utter darkness. We passed rescue workers in their vehicles on the way to our ultimate destination.

BOB MURRAY, CEO, MURRAY ENERGY CORP.: Right there is where the rescue effort is going on.

TUCHMAN: This is as far as we could go. This is where the mine collapsed. The six trapped miners are believed to be tantalizingly close.

But with tons of coal separating them from us, this was an unusual opportunity to see how much work rescue workers still have.

You're looking at the effort to drill into the coal and rock to rescue the six men. The machine is called a continuing mining vehicle. It has a spinning drum on the front of it with blades. It cuts into the coal, rock and other debris that is mixed in from the mine collapse and then deposited on the back of what's known as a shuttle car, which can transport 12 tons of coal at a time.

The coal is sent on a conveyer belt outside the mine. And the process continues over and over and over again, far below the surface of the earth.

MURRAY: Where the damage is here, we're about 2,000 feet deep.

TUCHMAN: But the process had to stop for almost two days because of seismic activity that has shaken up the mine and made it too dangerous for rescue workers.

The work to get to the miners originally began at a different point of the mine.

MURRAY: We had this cleaned up 310 feet. The machinery's still in there.

TUCHMAN: But another shift in the earth caused another partial collapse. And the cleared area filled with coal again.

(on camera): Frankly, it's very eerie standing here knowing that 2,000 feet behind me and maybe less are the six trapped miners. It's cold. It's dark. It's foreboding. A claustrophobic can never cut in here.

There's a steady wind blowing. The ceilings are low. We're 30 minutes away from the nearest exit.

In normal times it's very stressful, but right now there's a lot of tension. Nevertheless, the workers here, the rescue workers, the people who normally work in the mine, are calm because they have a job to do.

(voice-over): A reporter being allowed deep into a mine is very unusual, particularly in this situation. The mine owner says our visit had to be approved by federal authorities.

We were required to take a one-hour mining safety course before we embarked underground. And once underground, immediately came to grips with safety measures that are second-nature to miners.

Like periodically stopping to use mine telephones, to inform supervisors of your exact location. Our safety training was front and center in our minds.

When we heard a boom that shook our camera and the mine, startling workers and particularly us. The owner claimed it was another seismic event. One more he says and we have to evacuate.

MURRAY: When the coal breaks away from the rib and just kind of lays there, we call that sluffage (ph).

TUCHMAN: But there are no more.

We do see other damage to the mine walls, caused by the initial collapse. But it's the feverish work to rescue six men dead or alive, that stays in our minds.

MURRAY: This rubble could extend -- well, we know it goes 300 feet because we were up there. But it may go another 100 feet and stop and we can just walk up to the men. Or they may be right there.

TUCHMAN: Wishful thinking, perhaps. But it's keeping these rescue workers going.


O'BRIEN: Gary Tuchman is going to join us with a live update on the search for those trapped minors in just a few minutes. First though, here's Kiran Chetry with what's coming up Monday on "AMERICAN MORNING."


KIRAN CHETRY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Monday, we bring you the most news in the morning, including a new way to protect yourself from a growing health threat. Mercury, it's showing up more and more in fish and in the air. It can cause birth defects, even heart disease.

Well, there's a new way to test for it at home. Find out how it works and what you should you do with the results.

That's Monday on "AMERICAN MORNING," beginning at 6:00 a.m., Eastern.

Soledad, back to you.


O'BRIEN: Comining up next on 360, 9/11 made Rudy Giuliani a household name, but now it's coming back to haunt him on the campaign trail. Details in "Raw Politics," straight ahead.

Plus, dramatic new video of an out of control monster truck as it plows into a crowd. That's next.


O'BRIEN: A group called 9/11 Families is demanding an apology from former New York City major, Rudy Giuliani. During campaign spots, the Republican presidential front runner has been touting his performance after the 9/11 attacks. But now some rescue workers say he has crossed a line.

That's where "Raw Politics" begins tonight.

Here's CNN's Tom Foreman.


TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Soledad, the cornerstone of Rudy Giuliani's reputation is his leadership during 9/11 as mayor of New York. But now that is the cornerstone of a controversy.

(voice-over) It came from Cincinnati. That's where Rudy was talking about health concerns for workers at the World Trade Center cleanup site when he said this...

RUDY GIULIANI (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I was at Ground Zero as often, if not more than most of the workers. I was there working with them, and I was exposed to exactly the same things they were exposed to.

FOREMAN: Democratic contender John Edwards says it's outrageous and exploitive for Rudy to compare himself to first responders. Some first responders agree.

So Rudy's response? "I could have said that better."

All eyes on Iowa. The Republicans have been plowing through Hawkeye land in advance of their straw poll this weekend, but the Democrats are now hitting the state fair, circling like kids on a carousel in advance of their upcoming debate.

The "Raw" read: keep your eyes on the Republicans. They're acting like it's all good fun.

TOMMY THOMPSON (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Have a cool day wherever you are.

FOREMAN: But the straw poll could wipe out some of the second tier candidates. We'll see who can stomach the ride.

Speaking of folks not in the race, Republican Fred Thompson in Iowa next week for the first time. Still not running. Maybe he just wants some sweet corn.

And first, it was Ted Kennedy singing on a Spanish language radio show.

SEN. TED KENNEDY (D), MASSACHUSETTS: (singing in Spanish)

FOREMAN: Now the Obama-rama, same show, different song.


FOREMAN (on camera) Roughly translated, that means "beautiful and beloved Mexico." Even more roughly translated, "Vote for me, please," in any language -- Soledad.


O'BRIEN: Thanks, Tom.

Erica Hill joins us now with a "360 Bulletin".

Hey, Erica.


ERICA HILL, HEADLINE NEWS ANCHOR: Soledad, a 28-year-old suspect in the execution style murders of three college students in Newark, New Jersey, pleading not guilty just a day after turning himself in to the city's mayor.

His attorney confirmed his client is an illegal immigrant from Peru. Another suspect, a 15-year-old, has also pleaded not guilty. The county prosecutor says she wants him tried as an adult.

Investigators in Minneapolis hoping the photograph of the I-35W bridge taken from an airplane just before the bridge collapsed will help determine just what role heavy construction equipment may have played in the disaster.

Word of the new aerial image came as divers recovered more human remains from the Mississippi River, bringing the confirmed death toll now to at least nine.

In Illinois, a new look at a terrifying scene. We told you about this last night, a monster truck plowing into a crowd of about 100 spectators while performing stunts. At least nine people were injured, a mother and her child in serious condition tonight.

Witnesses says the truck appeared to lose control while trying to roll over four cars. The driver was not hurt, Soledad.

O'BRIEN: What terrible news there.

HILL: It's just awful.

In tonight's "What Were They Thinking", this is just -- I don't know if you're a pet lover. I have a dog and a cat. They're fantastic. But I think less is more in this case. I know there's an urge to rescue stray animals. Both of mine are strays.

But in Siberia, I think one woman took it a little too far, even though it gets cold there. Look at this room. When you see this, I'm not going to make you count, because I wouldn't be able to count them all. There are 130 cats.

O'BRIEN: Oh, my gosh.

HILL: A hundred and 30 of them. This Russian woman had taken them all in over the last 15 years. She shares her two-bedroom apartment with the kittens here. A little crowded, as you can see, especially at feeding time.

O'BRIEN: It's like "101 Dalmatians" with kitties.

HILL: It is. But it's alive instead of a cartoon. It's like birdseed that she's throwing out. It's just insane.

And she's just sort of -- there, looking a little like Lucy, if you ask me, in her house coat and her little handkerchief thing there. But, yes, there you go, 130 cats.

O'BRIEN: That's too many. I have one kitten, that's plenty.

HILL: Yes, I'm with you on that.

O'BRIEN: Also, I can imagine her neighbors must hate her.

HILL: I would think so, no only for the sound but also, I'm guessing, the smell.

O'BRIEN: Yes, yes, that -- that can't be good.


O'BRIEN: All right. Erica, thanks a lot.

HILL: See you later.


O'BRIEN: Got a late update from the mine rescue coming up. Also ahead, these stories.


O'BRIEN (voice-over): Exorcism in America.

RICK SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: He was trying to squeeze the demons out of the child?


O'BRIEN: A little girl's nightmare, her grandfather's death and where they fit in a centuries-old ritual that hasn't gone away.

Plus, a modern day demon slayer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bob Larson was getting the devil out.

O'BRIEN: He's also not alone. Meet a man of God who says he's on the front line in a growing fight against the devil inside. Tonight on 360.



O'BRIEN: Welcome back, everybody.

You're looking at some live pictures of the vigil being held in Huntington, Utah, for those six miners trapped underground. As you can see some of the photos of those missing miners being signed by the people who love them and know them the best there.

And we also want to update you tonight on the rescue efforts that are underway. The first attempt to find out if those men are alive or dead has failed. But now drilling in a second location, said to be about 240 feet now from the men.

Earlier in the program, Nicole Jones, who knows some of the missing miners and is a switchboard operator at Murray Energy, says the company put them under pressure to maintain production or face layoffs in December.

CNN's Gary Tuchman is at the mine. He joins us for an update.

Gary, what's the latest?

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Soledad, the work continues feverishly because there's absolutely no proof these men are dead. But we are learning that proving they're alive will be very hard and very time consuming, because the good news, although it's the video camera only two hours away from going inside a hole, or three hours away, and photographing, possible, the men, we're now learning that the area where the men are is a lot larger than we expected.

We kind of envisioned the men kind of sitting around together in a very small area. But what we learned tonight a short time ago is that it's possible they're in a thousand-foot long by 80-foot long area and it's unlikely they're together. They may have started running when the coal mine came crashing down, and they may be in different places, separated by rubble.

So when the camera goes down, it has lights. It's very advanced. It can swirl 360 degrees. But it can only take video in that dark environment 100 feet in each direction. So it's very likely that it won't see any of the men at all, even if they are alive, and that indeed is very discouraging.

What they're hoping, if they don't see any men, is they can see how much wreckage there is. If there's not a lot of wreckage, then they can assume that maybe these men are still alive .

Yet another failure today, also. A microphone was lowered down a different hole, and the microphone had technical problems, and it picked up no sound whatsoever.

So as far as a big development over this weekend, there's a very good possibility we're not going to get it even though the camera's going down.

O'BRIEN: Still, everybody there holding out hope. Gary Tuchman for us.

Thank you, Gary, for monitoring all of this for us.

We're going to continue to watch those developments out of Utah. We'll bring you the latest news when it happens.

Want to move now, though, onto another story. And this one is kind of bizarre. It involves a child, her grandfather and a reported exorcism that took a deadly turn. It happened in Phoenix.

CNN's Rick Sanchez has our report.


SANCHEZ: Shocking 911 calls.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My niece, which is my brother's daughter, thinks that she is some kind of angel, you know, that God sent her, and he's doing some kind of exorcist over there.

SANCHEZ: A woman tells Phoenix police she fears her relatives may be trying to remove demons from a child.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They're in the bedroom, in his -- their bedroom, with the door closed. And she's got a little girl that's like 3 years old and she's in there screaming and crying like she's scared, you know, like she don't know what is going on.

SANCHEZ: Another relative makes a similar call.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's in a room, my brother's room, just yelling and screaming to get out, get out of my daughter.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, so what exactly is she doing?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She's like, she's going crazy.

SANCHEZ (on camera): Police say when they got here to the scene, they were first met by a relative who told them that there was an exorcism going on inside the house.

They went to the front of the house to check it out, but they weren't able to go in. So then they went around the back. They say they heard screaming, so they went inside the house.

It wasn't until they got to the actual bedroom that they were able to open the door ever so slightly, peek in, and that's when they say they saw something that horrified them.

SGT. JOEL TRANTER, PHOENIX POLICE DEPARTMENT: The first thing they saw was this 19-year-old female covered with blood, extreme facial injuries, which required surgery later. And she was yelling, chanting and screaming.

They saw an adult male, not wearing a shirt, seated on a bed, and he had his granddaughter in what was described as a head lock, chokehold, was choking that child. The child was yelling, screaming, crying and at times actually gasping.

He also, with his other arm, he was squeezing tightly on the young girl's body.

SANCHEZ (on camera): He was trying to squeeze the demons out of the child?

TRANTER: Correct.

SANCHEZ (voice-over): Police tell CNN the man, Ronald Marquez, and his daughter, whose identity hasn't been released, called the officers devils, kicking and punching them while they tried to rescue the child. And Marquez kept fighting, even after police used a taser gun to subdue him.

(on camera) How bizarre was their behavior?

TRANTER: Well, at the time the officers arrived on scene, very bizarre. The yelling and screaming, that's unusual.

SANCHEZ (voice-over): The family priest, Father Peter Liuzzi, spoke to Marquez's brother later that day. He described his brother as very religious and superstitious.

Also, there were concerns about the child's mother, the bloodied woman police saw at the botched exorcism. Police are unclear as to her role in the incident.

FATHER PETER LIUZZI, FAMILY PRIEST: She was bothered by demons or saw demons, or when the cops came, thought that they were demons.

SANCHEZ: Father Liuzzi says what Marquez did was not sanctioned by the church and nothing like a real exorcism.

(on camera) Even if they were to do something like that, it would not involve being physical...

LIUZZI: Never.

SANCHEZ: ... or even to the point where it looked like, as police are describing this, an assault?

LIUZZI: No, no. That -- that would be so bizarre.

SANCHEZ (voice-over): Investigators are still trying to sort out exactly why Ronald Marquez thought his 3-year-old granddaughter may have been possessed.

But for now, answers are hard to come by. Marquez died of as yet undetermined causes shortly after being subdued by police. No word yet on an autopsy.

His daughter, the little girl's mother, is in the hospital recovering from facial surgery. And the 3-year-old, at the center of this strange and tragic scenario, is in the custody of child services.

Rick Sanchez, CNN, Phoenix, Arizona.


O'BRIEN: And coming up later on 360, a potential problem in space. What NASA found on the shuttle that has them worried.



MAX VON SYDOW, ACTOR: But the Holy Spirit, by this sign of the holy cross of our lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit.


O'BRIEN: Remember this movie? That's Linda Blair as the head- spinning demon child in the horror classic "The Exorcist".

But if you want to see an exorcism performed, you don't need to watch the movie. You can see it for yourself on any given night. At least that's what one pastor is claiming. He says he specializes in this ancient rite. And he has his followers.

CNN's Tom Foreman reports.


FOREMAN (voice-over): From the moment he arrives on the brown outskirts of Tulsa, Bob Larson was getting the devil out.

What might be called his personal theme song pounds through the room as he starts tonight's session at a local hotel, and it is appropriate. Bob Larson is an exorcist.

BOB LARSON, EXORCIST: You got the power of Jesus Christ is available now. Not 2,000 years ago, now to destroy the works of darkness.

The Bible is full of it. It's right here in the book. We can't escape it. So I'm -- you know, I'm doing what's normal. If the rest of the people think I'm abnormal, I think they're the ones who are out of step with scripture.

FOREMAN: As it is, many people are falling in step with Larson, mesmerized with his public confrontations with people who say they are possessed by devils.

LARSON: And I defy you in the name of the living God!


FOREMAN: Larson is not alone. The Catholic Church is training more exorcists. And one religion scholar says more than 600 Deliverance ministries have popped up in Protestant churches around the country. The common belief driving them all: demons really do move among us.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I believe there's demonic influence in the world.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Using the supernatural, and I want to be around it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I really expect to see some pretty wild stuff.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I wouldn't be here if I didn't believe that there were demons.

FOREMAN: On this night, Sherri Crittenden gives a typical example of how these demons show themselves. One minute, just sitting in the crowd.

LARSON: Get out of the way. Get in the back seat and let the devil drive.

FOREMAN: The next, howling. Writhing. And in a strange voice, screaming at Larson.

LARSON: Who are you? Who are you?

FOREMAN: Is this a set-up or a show? Larson insists it is neither. He says some people try to fool him. Some people have obvious mental conditions. But there is no mistaking a person possessed.

LARSON: There's something I refer to as that look. It's the look of a demon. And once you see it, believe me, you never forget it. You're looking into the heart of hell. And hell is staring back at you.

FOREMAN: Broad interest in all of this goes back to 1973, when "The Exorcist" scared the devil out of millions of movie fans.

Larson's interest dates to about that time. A Nebraska farm boy, he was a rock musician, became an inspirational speaker, then a Christian broadcaster. And along the way he says he started running into possessed souls.

LARSON: It was the real deal. I knew it was the real deal.

FOREMAN: So now he spends almost all his time preaching the gospel of Deliverance, through Christian TV...

LARSON: If you think you're tormented by the devil, who are you going to call, where are you going to go and what are you going to do?

FOREMAN: ... through videos and through exorcisms.

As he pulls demons from his audience, he also pulls dollars through offerings, sales of books, disks. He says he doesn't profit, but he is using the money to train Deliverance ministry teams all over.

He believes no one should be more than a day's drive from an exorcist. Especially these days.

LARSON: Crime, violence, drugs, the horrendous rise in sexual abuse in our country. All of this is an environment of human suffering that demons can feed on.

FOREMAN (on camera): Do you believe that most people have demons on them?

LARSON: I'd say it's close to half the population.

Come out in the name of Jesus! Come out, come out, come out! Come out in the name of Jesus!

FOREMAN (voice-over): After a long confrontation, Sherri's demon appeared to be driven out. Sherri wept, the crowd applauded and the exorcist called it a night.

LARSON: I'd go another four or five hours. I feel great. I feel fine.

FOREMAN (on camera): How is that possible? This just looks physically and mentally exhausting.

LARSON: It is. It is, but it's what God has called me to do. And that's what's exciting. I mean, Sherri is a different person.

FOREMAN (voice-over): She says so, even though she also says she's been possessed four times and exorcised twice.

SHERRI CRITTENDEN, UNDERWENT EXORCISM: God's brought me a long way in a short amount of time. And I think it's a continuing process.

FOREMAN: That's good enough for Larson.

(on camera) Do you believe that lives that are changed this way are truly permanently changed?

LARSON: Some, yes and some, no. No pun intended, some get repossessed. I'm serious, they do.

FOREMAN (voice-over): After all, he says, this is an eternal struggle between heaven and hell and the desperate souls caught somewhere in between.

Tom Foreman, CNN, Tulsa.


O'BRIEN: Still ahead, as we wait for news on those six miners trapped in Utah, we look at another mining accident, the Sago Mine tragedy. A 360 special edition is coming up at the top of the hour.


O'BRIEN: Erica Hill from Headline News joins us once again with a "360 Bulletin".

Hey, Erica.


HILL: Soledad, a suicide car bombing in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk killing at least seven people today. Nearly 50 others were injured in the blast at a crowded outdoor market. Further north, in Mosul, seven policemen killed by gunmen.

In outer space, potential trouble for the Space Shuttle Endeavour. NASA says the shuttle has a damaged tile. And now it may have been caused by ice that broke off the fuel tank after liftoff. It was discovered as Endeavour docked with the International Space Station today. NASA says, if necessary, that tile can be repaired during a space walk.

On Wall Street, a bumpy Friday as the Federal Reserve added $38 billion to the banking system. The Dow closed down just 31 points but earlier in the day had fallen more than 200.

The NASDAQ lost 11. The S&P actually finished the day in positive territory, up by a fraction.

On eBay, a bottle of brew listed as Allsopp's Arctic Ale from 1852, up for grabs now to the highest bidder. In just a couple of hours today -- get this -- the top bid went from $80,000 to more than $300,000.

So Soledad, if you want in on it, you've got to get ready. Auction shuts down Sunday night.

O'BRIEN: All right, Erica, thanks. Nice to know.


O'BRIEN: Up next, the latest on the effort to reach those trapped miners in Utah.

Also ahead, another mine tragedy that captured the attention of the country. We'll take you inside the Sago Mine disaster. What really happened? Could it have been prevented? That's next.


O'BRIEN: Good evening again. At the top of the hour, some breaking news. We're being very careful about just how we're reporting it. It concerns the threat of an al Qaeda attack against New York involving radioactive truck bombs.