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EARLY START WITH ASHLEIGH BANFIELD AND ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN

Trayvon Martin Shooting; 31 Killed In Russian Plane Crash; Coast Guard Yacht Rescue; Romney Hoping For Triple Header Sweep; The Madness Ends Tonight; Kansas Sells Winning Lotto Ticket; Screams on Trayvon 911 Calls; Mt. Etna Roars -- Again!

Aired April 2, 2012 - 05:59   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN HOST: Good morning and welcome to EARLY START. I'm Ashleigh Banfield.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN HOST: And I'm Zoraida Sambolin. We're bringing you the news from "A" to "Z." It is 6:00 a.m. in the east. Here's a look at what is ahead.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BANFIELD (voice-over): Trayvon Martin's parents are going to take their case directly to the justice department today. This is a day after thousands joined them in a rally for their son, including celebrities and civil rights leaders.

SAMBOLIN (voice-over): Wreckage in the snow. Take a look at this. A plane crashing on takeoff and bursting into flames. This is in Russia. Thirty-one people are dead, a dozen survivors barely hanging on this morning.

BANFIELD: An ugly post-game celebration. Kentucky fans burning couches, flipping cars, this, after Kentucky's win. There are reports of more than two dozen arrests this morning as the wildcats get ready to play in the title game.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mitt Romney, the next president of the United States!

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

SAMBOLIN: Gotcha! Mitt Romney punk'd (ph) by his staff. The GOP frontrunner totally fell for an April Fools' Day prank, for a minute, anyway. We'll show you his reaction.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BANFIELD (on-camera): But we begin now with new calls for justice in the death of a Florida teenager, Trayvon Martin, thousands of people attending a rally and a concert Sunday in Miami, including celebrities and civil rights leaders.

Jesse Jackson was there. Al Sharpton was there among others who are demanding that the shooter of Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman be arrested.

Trayvon's parents were also there, his mother telling the crowd she wants the public to know what her son was really like.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SYBRINA FULTON, TRAYVON'S MOTHER: We just want the public to know that he was a regular teenager, that he was respectable and loved by his family and his friends.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BANFIELD: In the meantime, Trayvon Martin's parents are calling on the Justice Department to investigate something else now. They want to know if there was some kind of interference in the case by the state attorney's office.

CNN's George Howell is live in Sanford, Florida, this morning. So, George, the Department of Justice is already involved in this case. They're looking into the possibility of civil rights violations when it comes to Trayvon Martin's civil rights.

How is this investigation going to be different or have they even, has the Justice Department even responded to this call for additional scrutiny on the state attorney in Florida?

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Zoraida, we know that the Department of Justice had met with the family about a week ago so they are already looking into the specifics of this case.

This is another request and we know the request will be written and formally submitted today. Attorney Ben Krump says it's still unclear how or when the Department of Justice will look into it.

But it's specifically focuses on the State Attorney Norm Wolfinger and his interactions with the lead investigator at the Sanford Police Department, Chris Cirino.

Did the prosecutor somehow interfere with that investigator? Now we know from Attorney Ben Krump they will be looking into that today and should hear back from him today on that.

HOWELL: And then also talk to me a little bit, George if you will, about "The Orlando Sentinel's" project. They asked two voice analysts to look into the 911 call where ear witnesses we call them were able to actually register the sounds of the screaming on their 911 calls. Talk to me a little bit about what their results were.

HOWELL: Right, according to that report, their conclusion was that it's very likely that it was Trayvon Martin that people heard in the background on that 911 audio and keep in mind, Zoraida, we did the same thing here with CNN.

We listened to the tape, had an audio expert come in, listen to it and again it was inconclusive on our end, but listen for yourself to this 911 recording. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

911: OK. Does he look hurt to you?

UNIDENTIFIED CALLER: I can't see him. I don't want to go out here. I don't know what's going on. They're sending --

911: So you think he's yelling "help"?

UNIDENTIFIED CALLER: Yes.

911: All right, what is your --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: Ashleigh, I'm sorry. So at this point the investigation continues there, still looking into this to determine whether that audio could be Trayvon Martin.

BANFIELD: All right, George Howell, thanks very much. Don't worry about it. I am thrilled when I am mistaken for Zoraida Sambolin. It's not a problem. Thanks so much. Keep an eye on things for us. We'll come back as new developments warrant.

We also want to remind our viewers that later this hour at 6:30 Eastern Time, we're actually going to talk with Ed Primeau, who was one of the audio experts who analyzed that 911 call that George was just talking about.

He's going to tell us exactly why he came to the determination that it was Trayvon Martin's voice and then also a little bit about that science and just how reliable that science actually is.

SAMBOLIN: It is 3 minutes past the hour here. A Russian passenger plane crashes during takeoff, killing 31 people on board including all four crew members. The plane was traveling from an oil- rich town in Siberia. It burst into flames. It broke into pieces.

All 12 survivors were rushed to the hospital. They remain in intensive care. Russian officials are examining the plane's data recorders.

BANFIELD: Two British sailors air lifted to San Francisco for medical treatment after a dramatic coast guard rescue at sea. They were plucked from a racing yacht about 270 miles off of the coast of California.

This after they were disabled because they were hit by a monster wave while racing this weekend, it was a four-person crew competing in a 40,000-mile race around the world.

SAMBOLIN: Mitt Romney looking to pull off a triple header sweep when voters head to the polls tomorrow in Wisconsin, Maryland and Washington, D.C.

Right now he's leading in all three races. Take a look at this. An NBC News/Marist poll in Wisconsin, 42 delegates are at stake, Romney has 40 percent. Santorum has 33 percent. The GOP frontrunner pretty confident. It's all headed in the right direction.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I got a good boost from the folks in Illinois and if I can get that boost also from Wisconsin, I think we'll be on a path that will get me the nomination well before the convention. Sure hope so.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: Well, Santorum is refusing to step away. He says he's staying in the race no matter what happens tomorrow.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RICK SANTORUM (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A North Dakota radio station the other day, Governor Sununu, one of Romney's chiefs spokesmen, trying to spin this, this race is over, this race is over.

Why is he spending $4 million in Wisconsin if the race is over? If it's over and it's -- you know, there's no chance then why is he bothering even campaigning anymore if it's over.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: CNN political editor, Paul Steinhauser, live in Washington, D.C. Can you answer that question?

PAUL STEINHAUSER, CNN POLITICAL EDITOR: Because it's not over yet. That is the real answer I guess. You know, Mitt Romney is still not even half way, Zoraida, to that 1,144 delegates needed to clinch the nomination.

Even if he wins all three states tomorrow he won't go over the top, not even close. The process takes some time, but for Romney, listen, the conversation has really changed in the last two weeks.

Ever since he won big in Illinois, we've seen so many major names from the Republican Party, including some top conservatives, Zoraida, come out and endorse Mitt Romney and say listen, it's time to kind of close ranks and get behind Mitt Romney.

The longer we go on with this divisive primary, the more it helps Barack Obama come November. But Santorum and Newt Gingrich to a degree as well, are definitely fighting on.

Santorum says until Romney clinches the nomination, he's going to continue to fight for those conservatives in the party. Take a listen to what he said last night in Wisconsin.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANTORUM: Cutting it short and getting the wrong candidate is worse than making this a fight for the heart and soul of America and the heart and soul of the Republican Party.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STEINHAUSER: If he doesn't win Wisconsin, it gets very tough for Santorum. Three more weeks until another round of primaries at the end of April and all those except for Pennsylvania seem to favor Mitt Romney. It's getting tougher and tougher for Rick Santorum.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: Some people think it's really tough already. I know you watch the polls very closely for us. There are some new swing state polls out this morning, what are they saying?

STEINHAUSER: Yes and this is interesting, the general election, President Obama versus, let's say, Mitt Romney if he's the nominee. Take a look at this, 12 battleground states where it could be close, where it's contested.

And overall, the president has a 9-point advantage over Mitt Romney, but takes a look at the gender gap. First let's start with men, basically dead even between Romney.

But now go to women and this is where really President Obama has his big advantage and seems to be getting bigger, a 16-point advantage among women voters in those 12 states.

SAMBOLIN: And they say that Romney's wife is out stumping for him in order to get that women vote. Apparently, she has to work a little harder there, right, Paul?

STEINHAUSER: You can see plenty more of her, definitely.

SAMBOLIN: All right, thank you so much. Paul Steinhauser, live in Washington for us.

So how long can Santorum hang on if he loses all three contests tomorrow? At 6:40, we'll talk about that and the candidates' future with Santorum Communications Director, Hogan Gidley.

BANFIELD: It is now 7 minutes past 6:00. The final four is no more. We are now down to two. I don't have another rhyme, I'm sorry. It's going to be Kentucky and Kansas in the NCAA national title game tonight in the big easy.

Kansas pulling off a stunning comeback over Ohio State on Saturday to get there and Kentucky held off its in-state rival Louisville.

Carlos Diaz is live in New Orleans. He gets the plum assignment, probably I don't know you get those court seats, what do they call them, front row, courtside seats?

CARLOS DIAZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Who is counting, come on now. We are down to the final two and it's so good to talk to you, Ashleigh. BANFIELD: Because I'm the biggest idiot around so you can speak mono syllabically about this. This is what I know about when you get to this part of the game, of the final four.

People find their ecclesiastical roots and they start praying. I had to work that in, Carlos because it was the word of the day. The crew is cheering quietly, but this is -- I mean, truly, this is really where it's at. People start getting pretty darn excited if they aren't already.

DIAZ: Exactly, well, Kentucky fans have been waiting 14 years since their last title. The Kentucky Wild Cats are the overwhelming favorite tonight, but you have a matchup of basketball royalty tonight.

Because basically what you have is, you have Kansas, who is the second most winning basketball team in the entire history of college hoops and Kentucky is the most winningest college basketball program ever.

So you've got two teams doing really well, but Kentucky is the number one seed. They have the best player in the country in Anthony Davis and they've already beaten Kansas by 10 points earlier this season.

BANFIELD: OK, here's what I don't get. If everything is so hanky dory, why were Kentucky fans burning things in the streets?

DIAZ: Because that's the way they celebrate in Kentucky. It was the bluegrass battle on Saturday night, after beating Louisville, which they're so proud of.

They set everything they could on fire and that's how they were celebrating. Now John Caliperi who is the head coach of Kentucky said he did not appreciate that.

And they're actually taking more measures tonight like no parking zones and more police on staff tonight to make sure that does not happen if Kentucky does beat Kansas tonight.

But I can tell you this, we went down to the French quarter and talked to Oscar, who is a tarot card reader and Oscar predicted correctly Kentucky and Kansas would play in the national championship game.

We went back to him last night and he told us that Kansas is going to win big tonight. So our tarot card reader in New Orleans picked Kansas tonight.

BANFIELD: I only have one question for you and why did you not go there for the power ball numbers? We could have been eating bon bones and drinking champagne this morning, Carlos Diaz.

DIAZ: Because money does not buy happiness, Ashleigh.

BANFIELD: Yes, it does! SAMBOLIN: How is his bracket doing?

BANFIELD: You know, Zoraida is asking how is your bracket and you know why she's asking us because she's leading us overall number one.

SAMBOLIN: I had to.

DIAZ: She has inside information is from what I understand. Zoraida brags all the time, all right?

SAMBOLIN: Perhaps I do.

BANFIELD: You know she's listening.

SAMBOLIN: I am, I'm right here. Listen, Carlos, it's a 13-year- old I have in my back pocket.

BANFIELD: Guess who is dead last? Do you know, Carlos? I don't know if you're in on this joke, we've all been laughing about it this morning. But you know who is dead last in the anchor bracket? Me. So the A to Z thing --

SAMBOLIN: It works!

BANFIELD: We've got it all buttoned up. Carlos Diaz, good to see you. Have some fun on this assignment, friend.

It's 11 minutes now past 6:00 in the morning on the east coast. But still ahead, three winners, about 100 million losers, us among them so will the mega millions winner come out and claim their prize and will you perhaps know him or her or they, them?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor Romney, the next president of the United States.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: I forgot it was April Fool's. Political pranksters on April Fool's day, Mitt Romney's staff totally gets one over on him. Wait until you see his reaction.

BANFIELD: What's around the corner?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BANFIELD: Three very lucky people and maybe a whole lot more folks may be calling out of work indefinitely this morning. They're either holding or have a stake in that record $656 million-dollar Mega Millions jackpot with the winning tickets sold in Illinois, Kansas and Maryland.

The winners will be getting over $218 million before taxes, that's if they take those payouts that go for 26 years. None of the ticket holders have stepped forward yet to claim their prize, but we are joined by a guy who may end up being in the know pretty soon, Dennis Wilson. He's the executive director of the Kansas lottery.

Dennis Wilson, I am so thrilled to talk to you. You're about the closest we have right now to knowing who one of these winners is.

And I got to ask you -- do you know yet or do your officials know yet who your Kansas winner is?

DENNIS WILSON, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, KANSAS LOTTERY: We do not know that. Monday, today, we're going to open up the office and we're excited about the winner coming forth. We're excited about a lot of things in Kansas, one is that we have our share of the winner and we also have KAU in the final game tonight.

BANFIELD: So, you've got a couple of things to be thrilled tonight, of course.

Here is my question to you -- does it usually take much time before a winner comes skedaddling up your doorstep to say, give me my money?

WILSON: Well, the last large winner we had came forth in 48 hours. But a lot of people take the time if they're listening to us at all. They're seeking good legal counsel, good financial advice and they're taking their time so when they come forward, they'll be very prepared.

BANFIELD: So, there's a lot to this when it comes to the money that the state benefits from, as opposed to the money that the lottery winner benefits from. The lottery winner gets a boatload of money but the states benefit, too. And I'm not sure if every state is the same.

But how does Kansas benefit from all that money that came pouring into this lottery?

WILSON: Well, that's a great question. And first of all, we obviously get our profit on the tickets that we sell. When you sell more tickets, we make more profits, and that's tremendous for the state of Kansas or any state.

Next, we obviously will get our state income tax when that person receives the money and that's a nice boost for Kansas. In addition to that, there is a residual here that says we tell the world that real people really win in Kansas. Buy more tickets, have a lot of fun.

BANFIELD: Is there any chance someone might have purchased that ticket and say in a convenience store or gas station on a highway and just kept on rolling right out of the state?

WILSON: Absolutely. That happens all the time, too. We're on the border of Missouri, that people could buy one in Kansas, run back. So, it is true that people can win from another state, but actually bought the ticket here, and they'll have to come and claim it here, too.

BANFIELD: So, do you have an idea of approximately where that ticket was sold or what kind of place that ticket was sold from?

WILSON: Great question. We tell everybody here in Kansas that it's in a region that was sold, we know the region, 21 counties, northeast Kansas, and from there, we leave them guessing.

BANFIELD: And if the winner, and I don't know if it's one winner or an office pool like we were a big office pool of 20 to 30 people, if that winner doesn't want us to know who he, she or they are, they don't have to in your state, do they?

WILSON: That's correct. Kansas has a law that you can remain anonymous and we would hope that again, they seek good counsel on that. We would prefer they come forward so we can have a great party and give the big check to them.

BANFIELD: So, that's always the most fun for the rest of us who played along and lost. We like to see who we lost to and we like to wish the winners the best. And thanks so much for getting up early to share this with us and congratulations on being one of the winning states.

WILSON: We're excited about it. Thanks for having us on today.

BANFIELD: Good luck on the hardwood, too.

WILSON: Oh, absolutely. Tonight's a big night. Thank you.

BANFIELD: All right. Dennis Wilson joining us live from Kansas this morning -- Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Thank you very much.

It is 19 minutes past the hour.

Mitt Romney pranked on April Fools' Day at a pancake breakfast in Milwaukee. Republican Congressman Paul Ryan and Senator Ron Johnson were the masterminds here. They used audiotape of people cheering when they introduced the GOP front-runner, and brought him into an empty room. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ron Johnson, and Mitt Romney, the next president of the United States!

(CHEERS)

(LAUGHTER)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: April Fools!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: He knew right away. Romney is known as a practical joker himself, so you do know that about him?

So, afterward, he told staffers he'd, quote, "forgive and remember."

BANFIELD: Sounds ominous.

I did know that he was a practical joker because earlier in the campaign when he was getting so much heat for being too stiff, his wife and sons came forward and said he pulls practical jokes all the time and that he's really a funny guy. So, clearly, they --

(CROSSTALK)

BANFIELD: He knew they were punking.

Still ahead, 26 minutes past 6:00 on the East Coast. Want to see winning fans and how they behave after getting a great win on the hardwood? The Kentucky fans, the students setting fires after their Final Four win. Police taking a look at what's happening, making a bunch of arrests. What's going to happen tonight?

SAMBOLIN: OK. So you didn't hit the mega millions, right? But did you hit the retirement jackpot? Can the market rally really last?

Christine Romans is going to look into our crystal ball. She'll be right back with that. You are watching EARLY START.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAMBOLIN: Twenty-four minutes past the hour, and we are minding your business this morning.

Big gain for U.S. stock markets in the first quarter which ended on Friday. Check out your 401(k) and you will see what we mean.

BANFIELD: Christine Romans is here with more on all of this.

So, what's the deal? Why such a great first quarter? Kind of feels like it's out of the blue, because it was all doom and gloom right up to Christmas.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: It's doing well because the stock market is telling us companies are making more money and that the economy is improving and that means that their bottom line is improving and they're also sitting on an awful lot of cash, you'll recall, many of these companies, too.

So, they are being cautious but at the same time they're making money again and that's what's reflected in the S&P 500. Take a look at it. For the past three years it's been moving almost straight up with a couple of pullbacks where it just refreshed the rally.

Look, you've got it up 12 percent in the first quarter of 2012, that's the best first quarter since 1998 for the Dow, the NASDAQ and the S&P and the S&P is up 65 percent over the past three years.

The stocks that's in the S&P 500, folks, this is most likely what the stocks in your 401(k) look like. So, while we've been talking about Mega Millions, you can't win if you don't play, you can't win if you don't play in the stock market and it has been an amazing, amazing jackpot return over the past three years. I mean, we'd have, you know, financial crisis, of course, and the stocks plunging.

But ever since then, things have been going up, up, up. Apple up 48 percent so far this year. A lot of the bank stocks are up really stronger this year. Technology stocks up this year.

Also, even the past few weeks, health care stocks have been doing well as the Supreme Court looks like maybe, maybe health care reform won't make it. Those stocks have been doing well.

All of this is hoping that the U.S. recovery continues. A lot of the analysts, many, many of the Wall Street analysts say it keeps going from here, not like the first quarter but you could have more gains. The -- I don't know, the reasons to be concerned are the U.S. recovery if it stalls, if housing market remains weak. Your home prices are at a 10-year low. Your 401(k) is at a three-year high.

SAMBOLIN: How do you know if you jump in, though? I mean, is it that risk assessment?

ROMANS: You know what? If you work for a company and you have a 401(k), you should be in. And you can have a lot more cash and bonds if you're worried.

I'm going to tweet out a risk assessment profile. People, you can take this quiz and figure out if you should be getting in here and what your portfolio should look like.

BANFIELD: I'd like to you meet me in my office after the show for a rebalance.

ROMANS: Oh, you're -- I absolutely, I don't charge very much.

BANFIELD: Oh, I thought it was free.

ROMANS: No, it's free, it's free.

BANFIELD: All right. Thanks, Christine.

ROMANS: You're welcome.

BANFIELD: It's 27 minutes past 6:00.

SAMBOLIN: And ahead on EARLY START, a new twist on the Trayvon Martin case. The audio of someone screaming for help that night, was it Trayvon or was it George Zimmerman? Our next guest has his answer.

BANFIELD: And also, a student science project triggers evacuations at a Dallas airport. What on earth went wrong?

You're watching EARLY START.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAMBOLIN: It is 30 minutes past the hour. Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

BANFIELD: I'm Ashleigh Banfield. Nice to have you here with us.

It's time to check the stories making top billing for news headlines this morning.

Trayvon Martin's family is asking for a new federal review of their son's death. It concerns possible interference they allege by Florida prosecutors who declined to pursue charges against George Zimmerman despite a police report that recommended his arrest.

A Russian passenger plane crashes during takeoff, killing 31 people on board, including all four of the crew members. The aircraft was traveling from an oil rich area of Siberia. It burst into flames after takeoff. There were 12 who survived but this morning, they remain in intensive care.

An ugly post-game celebration. Kentucky fans burning couches and flipping cars -- this after their team won. There are reports of more than two dozen arrest this is morning as the wildcats get ready to play in the title game tonight.

Dallas Love Field Airport was shut down yesterday by a student's science project. That's right, a science project. Five gates were evacuated when the TSA found a robotic decision near the cockpit of a Southwest Airlines flight that was heading to Kansas City. A professor and his students wound up being detained and it turns out one of the kids accidentally left the robot on the plane.

SAMBOLIN: It is 32 minutes past the hour here.

Trayvon Martin's parents are taking their case directly to the Justice Department. They say they will ask the Justice Department to investigate if a Florida state attorney possibly interfered in the investigation of their son's shooting death by George Zimmerman.

This would be in addition to the current Justice Department investigation into Martin's death, which is looking at whether or not the incident was a hate crime. There are still many unanswered questions in this case, but one piece of evidence is especially haunting, it's the screams of an unidentified person caught on a 911 tape, as the neighbor called for help.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

911: Does he look hurt to you?

CALLER: I can't see him. I don't want to go out there. I don't know what's going on.

They're sending --

(YELLING)

911: So you think he's yelling help?

CALLER: Yes.

911: All right. What is your --

(GUNSHOT)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: It's tough to listen to that. And here is how a different witness described it to Anderson Cooper. We've disguised their voice to hide their identity.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WITNESS: I heard the yell for help, one yell for help and then I heard another, as I described an excruciating type of yell, didn't even sound like a help, it just sounded so painful.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: So here is what you should know. Zimmerman himself says that he was yelling for help as he was being attacked by Trayvon. According to the original police report, he said, quote, "I was yelling for someone to help me, but no one would help me." The "Orlando Sentinel" asked audio experts to analyze the screaming and reports it did not match George Zimmerman's voice.

And joining us now is one of those experts. Ed Primeau is an audio engineer and forensics expert. And he joins us now from Detroit.

If you could explain to me the technique that you use in order to do your voice analysis, please.

ED PRIMEAU, AUDIO ENGINEER AND FORENSICS EXPERT: There's really two curricula that are used. The first is critical listening skills, which an audio forensic expert that specializes in voice identification develops over time and the second is electronic measurement as a spectrum analysis.

SAMBOLIN: And is this normally used in cases like this? Or is it used to identify stress in voice?

PRIMEAU: It's used to identify an unknown voice in cases. I've worked on murder cases and bomb threat cases. This is an exact science that, when used properly, is beneficial to the legal team, and brought on to, into the courtroom.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Here's the shot of the audiometers from your blog, audioforensicexpert.com. What did you find?

PRIMEAU: When I first got a blog from, Jesse Siegel (ph) sent me a note asking me to listen to these be to the recordings and formulated opinion, it was the first time I paid attention to these recordings. And I started to listen to the George Zimmerman call and I saw the whole situation unfold in my mind's eye, the way that he was told by the 911 dispatch not to proceed, when he saw Trayvon running.

I also heard him refer to Trayvon as "these people always get away with this," and I'm paraphrasing and I heard something after that, which also kind of leads up to the whole recreation in my mind's eye. And then after listening to that call, I listened to the woman's call there where you can clearly hear the screaming in the background and my immediate reaction is that sounds like a young man.

SAMBOLIN: OK. Have you ever heard Trayvon's voice, though, in order to make a comparison here?

PRIMEAU: No, but that would be a requirement going forward would be to have an exemplar, which is a sample of George Zimmerman's voice, and you want to get it as exact as possible, you want to create it using as much equipment that was used to create this original call and then you want to get some samples of Trayvon's voice, perhaps from some family video where he's laughing or his attitude is escalated very similar to the way that the screams are, and then analyze all of the data to determine the results to provide to the legal team.

SAMBOLIN: You mentioned something earlier. Was it the police department that brought you in, in order to analyze the voice?

PRIMEAU: No, it was a blogger out from Washington, Jesse Siegel (ph) who sent me an e-mail asking my opinion about it and that was really the first contact that I had with this, and this was a little over a week ago.

SAMBOLIN: Now, we know this is not an exact science here. But in your opinion, what -- is there a chance here that this is not Zimmerman's voice?

PRIMEAU: There's a huge chance that this is not Zimmerman's voice. As a matter of fact, after 28 years of doing this I would put my reputation on the line and say this is not George Zimmerman screaming.

SAMBOLIN: And can you put a percentage on that?

PRIMEAU: Boy, that's a tough question. I'm going to say about 95.

SAMBOLIN: All right. And so you say that in order for us to get a better analysis I guess here, that you would need to have Trayvon's voice. Are you going to get that?

PRIMEAU: Nobody's asked me to do anything yet. I think what's even more important here is to get an exemplar of George Zimmerman's voice through the same phone call the lady used when she called in to 911 operators that day, put him in the exact same spot where the screaming came from and recreate the sign and recreate the sight, excuse me, and then record that as similar as possible to the original 911 call. That's the way we analyze Zimmerman's voice.

And then the Trayvon voice we have to analyze using whatever we have available to us from the family.

SAMBOLIN: You know, we attempted to reach out to Zimmerman's attorney and we have not heard back. Do you think that all of this could actually affect the investigation?

PRIMEAU: I do.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Ed Primeau, thank you so much for joining us this morning. We appreciate your time and your expertise.

Ashleigh, back to you.

BANFIELD: It is 38 minutes past 6:00 on the East Coast.

And still ahead on EARLY START, there is mounting pressure on Rick Santorum from within his own party to step aside in his bid for the Republican nomination. But he says he's not going anywhere yet.

Still ahead, we'll speak with his communications director Hogan Gidley and pose some of the tough questions.

And also, a little two-year-old toddler falling 40 feet into a one-foot-wide dry well. The rescue is dramatic. You won't believe what it was like when they pulled up that cable.

You're going to see it on EARLY START.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In season to come, Danni (ph) and the Dothraki, they are first and foremost her people. And so, wherever she goes, they follow. But at the same time, yes, she's travelling to many different lands. There are other languages that she comes across.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have other languages coming up on the show that are not (INAUDIBLE), also need to be invented and we're hoping that David will do that for us as well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Personally, I would love to keep creating languages for projects like "Game of Thrones" or for TV shows, for movies. I mean, that's kind of a dream of everybody to create a language.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BANFIELD: And a lovely picture of the Milwaukee tower cam this morning. It's 42 degrees right now. But as you yawn, and stretch and get dressed and get ready to get outside, NCAA -- I love the lights on that building, it's going to warm up to about 55 degrees later on today, at 43 minutes now past 6:00 on the East Coast.

And Mitt Romney is looking to get past tomorrow's primaries, including the winner take all contest in Wisconsin.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. PAUL RYAN (R), WISCONSIN: I think it's a big delegate count which I think he'll get. And we believe as conservatives that we should coalesce around our nominee and focus on the task at hand, which is the fall election and not drag this thing out.

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), MINORITY LEADER: The chances are overwhelming he will be our nominee. It seems to me that we're in the final phases of wrapping up this nomination.

(END VIDEO LCIP)

BANFIELD: That's some serious endorsing, kind of.

Yesterday, Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson added his name to the list of leaders who are endorsing Mitt Romney. And joining among others, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, who you just heard from, and also, former President George Herbert Walker Bush, his son, not the president but the senator and the -- or rather the governor, Florida Governor Jeb Bush, and a rising star in the Republican Party, Florida Senator Marco Rubio.

So, what does it all mean, if anything?

Joining me now, Hogan Gidley, who is communications director for Rick Santorum's presidential campaign.

Full disclosure -- I always like to say, Hogan, we used to work together as well down in Dallas, texas, way, way, way back in the '90s. It's good to see you again. How are you doing?

HOGAN GIDLEY, COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR, SANTORUM CAMPAIGN: It's good to see you. I'm doing great, Ashleigh. Thanks for he time.

BANFIELD: I can only assume that you don't get a whole lot of sleep these days. That this is sort of the possible final stretch, although I'm not certain. But there are a lot of Republicans, including the most powerful senator in the Republican Party, Mitch McConnell, who are saying it's time to throw in the towel, coalesce around a leader, suggesting that that leader being Mitt Romney.

Does that make your blood boil?

GIDLEY: It doesn't make my blood boil. But look, if this thing were down to Washington establishment endorsements, we would have been out of this thing a long time ago.

The fact of the matter is, there's only half way point to the process. And we've got 25 more states to go. Louisiana was the half way point. And, you know, I know Governor Romney is a New England Patriot fan, and I'm sure he would have loved to have gone down at halftime at the Super Bowl and say this game is over, Patriots win, but the fact of the matter is there was a second half to play. The Giants came out ready, and of course, we all know that ended up with the Giants winning. So, we've got a long way to go here.

BANFIELD: That makes a whole bunch of sense, but listen, you got to admit that when your candidate says and I quote here "folks, we're not going to win an election on math." Well, that's exactly what you win an election on is the math. And your math is looking rough, I have to be honest with you.

There are 94 delegates at stake tomorrow night if you look at Wisconsin, Maryland, and D.C., the primaries that will be held tomorrow. But then, in another three weeks, you got 204 delegates that are up for grabs in Connecticut, Delaware, New York, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island.

And I do want to -- Hogan, I got to draw attention to Pennsylvania, who, you know, your candidate is the former senator from Pennsylvania, and he's taken a big dive in the poll numbers in Pennsylvania. I was really surprised when I looked at this, that back in February, he was leading Mitt Romney 45-16, and just last month in March, that came within two percentage points.

He's now only leading two points over Mitt Romney. So, the question is begged here. It could be disastrous if he loses Pennsylvania, his home state. Would that be worth staying in the race?

GIDLEY: It would be, but I mean, look, that poll -- you're talking about one poll. The next day, two more polls came out. One had him up 22 and one had him up 18. So, it is his home state. At the end of the day, we think we're going to do very well in Pennsylvania. But, you know, Pennsylvania is like the other state, so far.

Mitt Romney has spent millions and millions of dollars. They're already running nasty robo calls in the state, trying to smear Rick's record and Rick's reputation. So --

BANFIELD: Hogan, restore our future hasn't even gotten started on Pennsylvania, though. Aren't you worried about that?

GIDLEY: No, I'm not worried. Look, we've won 11 states with them having all their sights focused on Rick, so far. So, that's just part of the process. I mean, I don't think the people of Pennsylvania who've known Rick for a very long time are going to listen to, you know, the smear campaign and the Washington bureaucratic behemoth death star that is the Romney attack machine.

That's just part of the process. They know that. And look, Rick's been through, you know, some rough campaigns in the past. This has been rough, so far. So, we're ready for that as well. So, we'll just keep looking forward. BANFIELD: You know, on Republican donors, what about the fatigue that they might be suffering right now? I mean, this is a new age with Super PACing and all the money that's been thrown at this race, so far. Are you not concerned as a good Republican that you could be taking money now from a general election battle in the future?

GIDLEY: No. I mean look, you have to get to 1,44. I don't understand what the big deal is.

BANFIELD: You got to get 72 percent of the remaining delegates to get there. That sounds really tough.

GIDLEY: Right. It does. Sure. But I mean, look, we've had tough odds against us before. No one gave us a chance in Iowa or the other ten states we won in addition to Iowa, but, you know, I mean, this process is going to take a very, very long time and for people to suggest anything other than getting out before someone gets to 1,144, of course, we'll coalesce behind the nominee when the nominee gets the required number of delegates.

But, it's a long way off, and there's no guarantee Mitt Romney is going to get those delegates, and quite frankly, they're probably a little concerned, because as we move into May, those states shift back to Rick, and, you know, they're going to have a problem being that perceived, powerful frontrunner.

I mean, don't forget, McCain was the nominee early on, and he was sitting pretty watching Hillary and Obama, you know, fight each other all the way into June.

BANFIELD: Sure.

GIDLEY: And we all know how that turned out. McCain got crushed in the general. So --

BANFIELD: No Super PACs back then. That's the only thing I can say that is no Super PACs back then.

GIDLEY: That's true.

BANFIELD: When are you going to let your candidate come on our show, Hogan Gidley?

GIDLEY: I don't know. It's a little early.

BANFIELD: No, it is not. I'm holding your feet to the fire, young man. We are former co-workers. You have to do that for me.

GIDLEY: That's right. I'll work on it. I promise.

(LAUGHTER)

BANFIELD: It's good to see you. Thanks for coming in this morning.

GIDLEY: Sure. Thanks, Ashleigh. BANFIELD: Hogan Gidley joining us live.

SAMBOLIN: You know, I was asking Paul Steinhauser, our number cruncher, that if Santorum stays in, when can Mitt Romney potentially when he said June 5th primaries. All the way to June 5th. So --

BANFIELD: Well, that if he wins everything along the way.

SAMBOLIN: Exactly.

BANFIELD: This is a proportional thing, and that's why we are going to be at this for a long time.

SAMBOLIN: For a long time.

All right. Forty-nine minutes past the hour. Soledad O'Brien joins now with a look at what is ahead on "Starting Point." Good morning.

SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN HOST, "STARTING POINT": Hey, ladies. Good morning to both of you.

New developments to talk about in the Trayvon Martin shooting. The debate over exactly who's heard screaming on that 911 call that was placed right before Martin was shot to death. We're going to talk this morning to one of the forensic experts who has analyzed the tape.

Also, ground-breaking new study that was commissioned by Anderson Cooper and his "360" staff, children and race is what it's called, both White and Black children tested, and we'll take a look at how the racial makeup of a school can play a big role in how kids have an attitude about race. Anderson is going to join me this morning to break that study down.

And the mega millions mystery. There are three winning tickets, and they're going to share the largest lottery jackpot in U.S. history, $656 million. We'll talk to lottery officials this morning from the state of Illinois where one of the tickets was purchased, talk about when those winners might come forward. All that and much more ahead on "Starting Point." We'll see you right at the top of the hour.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BANFIELD: Now, 53 minutes past the hour and time check stories making news this morning with Christine Romans.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Trayvon Martin's family taking their calls for justice to a new level this morning.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROMANS: His parents plan to ask the justice department to review the actions of Florida prosecutors who reportedly prevented police from arresting George Zimmerman the night he shot Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman has not been charged. He claims the shooting was self- defense.

Italy's Mt. Etna is roaring to life again. It's the fifth time it's erupted already this year. Mt. Etna is Europe's tallest and most active volcano. It's spewing lava and ash high to the sky, but unlike interruption last month, air traffic this time will not be disrupted.

And check out this incredible rescue in Southwest China. A two- year-old boy fell into an abandoned dry well 40 feet deep. Finally, they pulled this little guy out. He was crying, but he was OK. That video, oh, every time, you guys, unbelievable.

BANFIELD (voice-over): Chilling. I've got goosebumps, Christine.

SAMBOLIN (voice-over): I love that he's OK.

ROMANS: I know. And all of the people come together like that to get him out.

BANFIELD: Yes.

SAMBOLIN: Thank you.

BANFIELD: Look at his little face.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BANFIELD (on-camera): Oh, Lord.

SAMBOLIN (on-camera): It is 54 minutes past the hour. A 12- year-old does something no skateboarder has ever done before. We're going to show it to you. You're watching EARLY START.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAMBOLIN: Time to look at what is trending on the web. You may not be seeing cheerleaders like this any time soon, at least, in Indonesia. Indonesia's religious affairs minister proposed making mini-skirts a crime, called them a type of pornography, Ashleigh. Got a problem with booty?

(LAUGHTER)

BANFIELD: Apparently, a problem.

SAMBOLIN: "The Wall Street Journal" reports that Indonesia's house speaker suggested that women who wear mini-skirts could encourage men to rape them.

BANFIELD: Oh, for heaven's sake.

All right. Let's talk about some very (ph) booty in the air, 12- year-old, a kid pulling off a trick that even Tony Hawk has never been able to do before.

SAMBOLIN: Incredible. BANFIELD: Tom Sharr (ph), remember the name. He's rewriting skateboarding history. Did you count it? Count, one, two, three, four. Holy Moly! 1,080. That's three complete 360s on the world's largest skating ramp in California. He did it on his fifth try and said it was easier than I thought. Can you believe it? That's just an 80-pound kid.

SAMBOLIN: I can do that.

BANFIELD: Oh, you can do that, can you?

SAMBOLIN: I can.

BANFIELD: Congratulations to that guy.

(LAUGHTER)

BANFIELD: He's going to be famous at the X Games. That's it. That's the news. That's EARLY START from A to Z. I'm Ashleigh Banfield.

SAMBOLIN: And I'm Zoraida Sambolin. "STARTING POINT" with Soledad O'Brien starts right now.

O'BRIEN: And thank you.