Return to Transcripts main page


Alabama Bunker Crisis Ends; Ted Nugent Backs Gun Rights; Foxconn Offering Union to Employees

Aired February 5, 2013 - 05:30   ET


VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We're told that's where he was overnight with his family and finally out of that bunker after this all started on Tuesday when he was snatched of that school bus. The driver was shot and this ordeal began.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: Victor, we understand that authorities are still working on the crime scene, that they're searching for explosive devices. What other details have you learned about that and why are they searching for that, why do they believe that there could be explosive devices?

BLACKWELL: Well, we know that this crime scene will be processed for the next few days. We've been told that there will be no rush. They're going to go through this quite meticulously. We do not know specifically why they believe there might be devices here. There could be explosives, but we know how they're doing it.

The U.S. military loaned the FBI some high-tech bomb detecting device that's typically used in war zones. We know that the military was here for this operation, but they were not involved in the rescue.

SAMBOLIN: We're watching -


SHERIFF WALLY OLSON, DALE COUNTY, ALABAMA: This little boy, he's a special child who's been through a lot. He's endured a lot. It's by the grace of God, you know, he's OK.

STEVE RICHARDSON, FBI SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE, MOBILE DIVISION: He's doing fine. He's laughing, joking, playing, eating, the things that you would expect a normal five-year-old to six-year-old young man to do.


BLACKWELL: And Zoraida, that's the good news is that he is eating and laughing and playing in the hospital. All the physical signs are good from what we've been told by the FBI and the sheriff here. The question is, psychologically --


BLACKWELL: -- how is he doing. How will he be in the next days and weeks? Because not only was he in this bunker for so long, but he watched that man, his bus driver, Mr. Chuck as he called him, meet his demise, shot and killed by Jimmy Lee Dykes, we're told by authorities. That will take some time to determine just how he is psychologically, Zoraida. But, he's home, one day before his birthday.

SAMBOLIN: Now, that is the exciting news, right? We also don't know whether or not he witnessed Dykes being killed. We're going to talk to a psychologist later about all of that. But one final question for you, because we hear that he's doing well and he's in the hospital. How about his family, his parents? How are they doing?

BLACKWELL: Well, we hear that they are, obviously and understandably, excited. We spoke with his uncle yesterday at a vigil for Ethan. And they are understandably excited to have him home. It's going to take them some time as well, because understand that while this was happening inside the bunker, there were also probably psychological issues that have to be worked out with the family who is without this child as this goes on day after day.

So, a lot of healing for this family and for this community, but it all starts with getting Ethan back with his family.

SAMBOLIN: No doubt. Victor Blackwell, we really appreciate having had you there every single moment as this was happening. Thank you.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: Can I just say, law enforcement, I mean, it looks as though they played this calmly and perfectly. You know, for six long days, they watched this all, you know, without overreacting, without going in too quickly.

SAMBOLIN: Oh, and thanking Dykes. I thought that was really a critical moment, right, when they get on TV and they thank Dykes for taking care of that little boy. Very strategic.

ROMANS: This, I'm sure, will end up in one of those textbook cases for people who are learning about hostage negotiations and making sure it ends up right.

All right. For the fourth time in five years, the Obama administration has missed its deadline for submitting a budget to Congress.

House Republicans, surprise, surprise, they don't like it. They plan to vote on a bill later today that would force the president to give Congress more details about his budget plan. The White House is blaming this delay on the recent uncertainty over the fiscal cliff and says everyone should be focusing on substance over deadlines.

SAMBOLIN: And a chilling moment in court. Jodi Arias, the woman accused of killing her ex-boyfriend in a gruesome 2008 attack, confessed to the jury that she's a murderer.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you kill Travis Alexander on June 4th, 2008?



SAMBOLIN: So, the 32-year-old went on to say that she acted in self- defense when she stabbed her ex-boyfriend 27 times, slashed his throat from ear to ear and shot him twice in the head. If convicted, she faces the death penalty.

ROMANS: That's a strange case.

Trayvon Martin would have been 18 years old today. The unarmed Florida teen was shot and killed nearly a year ago. Lawyers for the man who pulled the trigger, George Zimmerman, will be in court in Orlando this morning. They're requesting a trial delay and additional records in this case. Zimmerman faces second degree murder charges.

SAMBOLIN: Vice President Joe Biden is in London, the latest stop on his three nation tour of Europe. He's already been to Germany and France where he praised the French government for its decisive action against Islamic extremists in Mali. So, today, Biden visits with U.S. embassy staff before heading to Ten Downing Street for a meeting with British prime minister, David Cameron.

And new images just in from London. These are what forensic scientists believe King Richard III would have looked like. Attractive? Just minutes ago, they showed off a full reconstruction of his head based on the bone structure of his skull. And just yesterday, folks, archaeologists confirmed that a 500-year-old skeleton found under a parking lot 90 miles northwest of London is indeed that of the long lost king.

ROMANS: All right. That wasn't --



ROMANS: Are you tired of flying with screaming babies or kids kicking the back of your chair?

SAMBOLIN: No, they're mine.

ROMANS: They're my children, too. I'm very sorry about that, but we have an airline for you if you don't flying with people like us. Starting this week, kids under 12 are banned from the first seven rows of economy cabins on select Air-Asia X flights. The Malaysia based airline is offering what they call quiet zones on (INAUDIBLE) flights to places like China, Australia, and Japan.

You can book one of these kids' free quiet zone for an additional fee between 11 and 35 bucks. And I will pay anyone $100 if they would sit with my child while I sit in the zone.


SAMBOLIN: Well, here's the deal, though, that's just for those limited seats. If a kid is ten rows behind that, you're still going to hear them, right?

ROMANS: Yes. My kids --

SAMBOLIN: Yes. I don't understand this. I don't understand this.

ROMANS: Bring noise canceling headphones.

SAMBOLIN: Right. That's a better idea.

Thirty-six minutes past the hour. He might be about as anti-gun as you can get, yet, here's Piers Morgan. That's him. He is pulling the trigger at a Texas shooting range. Why? We're going to have more from him, coming up.

ROMANS: And he's about as pro-gun as you can get. CNN's inside look at Ted Nugent's ranch where everything is fair game.


ROMANS: Good morning. Welcome back to EARLY START this morning. Piers Morgan taking the gun control debate to the heart of America's gun country. The CNN anchor broadcasting his show from suburban Houston last night. Morgan admitted it was exciting to fire semi- automatic weapon at a local gun range, but things turned fiery when he went toe-to-toe with rocker and NRA board member, Ted Nugent.


TED NUGENT, NRA BOARD MEMBER: Do you care about murders or you only care about murder with guns?

PIERS MORGAN, CNN ANCHOR: I care about all deaths.


NUGENT: I don't think you do. I think you care about guns. I think you're obsessed with guns. 99.99 percent of the gun owners of America are wonderful people that you are hanging around with here today. Perfectly safe, perfectly harmless. Wonderful, loving, giving, generous, caring people. Would you leave us the hell alone?


SAMBOLIN: Ted Nugent has been one of the nation's most passionate defenders of Second Amendment. He claims there is no such thing as gun violence. Our Deb Feyerick got to visit the rock star and gun advocate at his ranch in Waco, Texas.


NUGENT: Fire in the hole.

DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For Ted Nugent, gun control is putting the second bullet in the same hole as the first.

NUGENT: Two down. FEYERICK: A lot of people look at the tragedy at Sandy Hook and they say something's got to be done and they --

NUGENT: Agreed. Something does have to be done.

FEYERICK: And they point to the weapons that were used as the cause.

NUGENT: It's not the weapons. The weapons have nothing to do with it. These -- again, these weapons are in every pickup truck in Texas.

FEYERICK: The famed platinum-selling rocker is passionate about his music, his family, and his firearms. Nugent is fiercely protective of the rights of law-abiding gun owners, and he's invited us to his 300 acre ranch in Waco, Texas, to explain why.

NUGENT: I'll give you some real eye candy in a second here.

FEYERICK: We see (INAUDIBLE), wild turkey and black buck antelope, all fair game during hunting season. Like tens of millions of Americans, Nugent grew up hunting with his dad and brothers. Guns are a family tradition he has avidly passed on to his wife and kids.

If somebody close to you were killed by a gunman, would your views on guns change?

NUGENT: Absolutely not. No. I would never turn against this wonderful tool that brings me self-defense capabilities and brings me great joy in competition and marksmanship training. Deb, you climb up this platform.

FEYERICK: I'm trying to understand the nature of the hunt.

NUGENT: When I get up here, Deb, I'm not kidding you, I do 79 concerts and I get up here, I strap myself in, I take a deep breath and I sit here for six hours.

FEYERICK: So, it's meditative to you?

NUGENT: Absolute meditation.

FEYERICK: Have you ever tried yoga?

NUGENT: I think this is the supreme yoga.

All right. Fire in the hole.

FEYERICK: Nugent's passionate for guns and unyielding belief in the Second Amendment right to bear arms has transformed Nugent into the, sometimes, fanatical face of the National Rifle Association.

NUGENT: You are a city girl. You stand kind of like you're golfing. Squeeze that trigger.


As he teaches me gun safety, Nugent repeatedly emphasizes that gun violence is caused by criminals, the mentally ill, and a justice system that paroles felons too son. He believes limiting guns and ammunition will not stop tragedies like the massacre at Sandy Hook elementary.

(on-camera): The argument that was made is that he was allowed to kill as people as he did because it had multiple bullets and he was able to just keep firing.

NUGENT: The rate of fire in all these mass shootings, it's not a matter of bullets or firepower. A quail gun in the wrong hands is as deadly as this gun. People have got to come to that reality.

FEYERICK: The ability to defend his family is something he takes very, very seriously.

NUGENT: When I'm being assaulted at my home, I and I alone, by any consideration whatsoever, will determine how many bullets I need to protect my family.

FEYERICK: Nugent has been a sheriff's deputy for 30 years and carries a concealed glock at all times.

So, I want you and I to solve this problem of gun violence.

NUGENT: There is no gun violence. There is criminal violence, and they use an assortment of tools.

FEYERICK: Let's talk about background checks.

NUGENT: I like background checks.

FEYERICK: Yes, but not at gun shows or with private sales.

A lot of people in law enforcement have to take a psychological exam before they're allowed to carry. So, why not ordinary citizens?

NUGENT: I wrote "Wango Tango" and I carry a gun.

FEYERICK: Nugent sticks to his guns literally. For him, the Second Amendment is non-negotiable.

NUGENT: America, my name is Ted Nugent, and these are all legal guns and I'm going to see that they remain legal because they're all good.

FEYERICK: Deborah Feyerick, CNN, Waco, Texas.


ROMANS: What a great piece. He is an avid, avid supporter of gun rights.

All right. Every time a woman wears pants on streets of Paris, she's breaking the law, technically. Technically speaking. We're going to explain.

SAMBOLIN: Really? Plus, the construction worker who owes his life, folks, to bubble wrap.

If you are leaving the house right now, you can watch us anytime on your desktop or your mobile phone, just go to


SAMBOLIN: Welcome back to EARLY START. Forty-eight minutes past the hour. Let's get you up to date on this morning's top stories.

A five-year-old Alabama boy is reunited with his family this morning after nearly a week in captivity. This was in an underground bunker. Ethan spent the night in a hospital after an FBI raid freed him yesterday. The boy's kidnaper, 65-year-old Jimmy Lee Dykes, was killed in that rescue operation.

ROMANS: The pre-trial hearings for the accused mastermind behind the 2000 bombing of the "USS Cole" in Yemen are under way. They face delays, however, due to issues brought from both the prosecution and defense. The bombing of that navy destroyer left 17 crew members were dead and wounded another 37.

SAMBOLIN: Political heavyweights like Bill Clinton turned out for a final farewell to former New York mayor Ed Koch. He was eulogized at his funeral by the city's current mayor, Michael Bloomberg, who said Koch was as genuine politician as the country has ever seen. Former President Clinton said Koch was man with a big brain and a bigger heart.

ROMANS: Foxconn, the company that assembles your top-selling gadgets like the iPhone, it's now asking its lower level employees, "Do you want to join the union?" Foxconn's move to get junior employees to join union is the latest response after the U.S.-based Fair Labor Association reviewed working conditions there.

It has already increased wages and amenities for workers. Foxconn made headlines in 2010 after a rash of employee suicides. And of course, spot checks to some of these plants have found underage workers and young, young people working more than 60 hours a week.

SAMBOLIN: Long live the pants. Women in Paris can now finally wear them risk-free. Apparently, a 200-year-old French law requiring women to ask permission to, quote, "dress like men," has finally been officially struck down by France's Prime Minister of women's rights. The antiquated law dates back to the French revolution. You may be surprised when you start looking at these old laws that are on the books that are never enforced, right?

ROMANS: That's a law that never stopped anybody.


ROMANS: All right. He couldn't pop just one. A 38-year-old construction worker in Boston who fell 30 feet off this building, he was saved from serious injury by bubble wrap. The fire department says the worker fell into a pile of the wrap on the ground. And he needed to be cut out of it.

SAMBOLIN: Oh, my goodness.

ROMANS: He did suffer back and shoulder injuries, but the bubble wrap certainly, certainly, softened the fall.

SAMBOLIN: May have saved his life.

ROMANS: Maybe.

SAMBOLIN: All right. People in the northeast and the Great Lakes, waking up with a little snow on the ground this morning. Meteorologist Indra Petersons joins us live from Atlanta. Good morning to you.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning to you both. Yes. We continue to see storm system after storm system produce some light and even some heavier bands of snow all the way from the Great Lakes to the northeast. It's a little bit deceiving because the bigger pictures actually that we're continuing to warm in the south. We have temperatures now especially out through Texas a good 10, 15 degrees above normal. And with this, notice this trend as temperatures continue to climb here.

We're going to be watching a severe weather threat set up again. Now, nothing like what we saw last week. Nonetheless though, we're going to have that warmer banked up against that cold air. We'll also be pulling that moisture out of the gulf. You get those too close next to each other. You set a wave (ph) through it. And we're going to be watching this for the threat of severe weather really in the southern plains all the way from Wednesday evening in through Thursday.

And I think (ph) we have Mardi Gras, so we're going to be watching this. But again, I do want to reiterate, this is a small threat here. Meanwhile again, look at this, we're still watching the cold temperatures starting the northeast still trying to warm up. Look at this, loving this, Houston 77, Memphis today about 64, Atlanta starting to see some above-normal temperatures about 62 degrees.

Meanwhile, that cold air, we know where it's filling in and it continues to fill in on the west. We like it. A little bit pay back for them. We were so cold last week, right? Here's the big picture today again. We're showing you where that snow continues to see the threat there from the Great Lakes all the way through the northeast.

But, yes, beautiful weather for us except for where the snow totals remain. Ashtabula about 16 inches of snow out there. (INAUDIBLE) for them. Sorry.


SAMBOLIN: Yes. Thank you, Indra, appreciate it.

ROMANS: It is February. I mean, it is still the dead of winter.

All right. A packed hour ahead on EARLY START, including the winter of our disinterment. More than 500 years after his death, archaeologists sort through a skull and bones found under an English parking lot. They say these remains, what you are looking at there, belong to Richard III. This morning, his face is revealed. We'll have a live report from London.

SAMBOLIN: And they explain stuff from the secrets of the universe to why bees are so cool. The guys from the mega-popular podcast and now primetime show, "Stuff You Should Know", will join us.

ROMANS: But first, if these walls could talk, things would not stay in Vegas. Oh, no, a building made of half a million recycled bottles of booze --


ROMANS: From the Vegas strip.

SAMBOLIN: Think recycling.


ROMANS: All right. Good morning. Welcome back to EARLY START. It is 56 minutes after the hour. I'm Christine Romans along with my friend, Zoraida Sambolin, taking a look at the top CNN Trends on the web this morning.

SAMBOLIN: And I was trying to sing thing for you, but I'm going to spare you.


SAMBOLIN: Five hundred thousand bottles of beer on the wall, yes, literally. This building right outside Las Vegas is made from half a million crushed and recycled glass beer and alcohol bottles gathered from casinos and hotels on the Vegas strip. That's 290,000 pounds of glass or about 20 full dumpster loads.

The company that created it called Realm of Design said most of the work was done by hand, and it took well over a year to complete. And it is beautiful.

ROMANS: Yes. If those walls could talk, right, what have those bottles seen.

All right. A record-breaking 164.1 million people watched the Super Bowl last night -- Monday night. Chances are -- or Sunday night -- chances are you were one of them, but chances are also that you didn't see the strangest commercial of the bunch.




SAMBOLIN: My, my, my, my. ROMANS: Will Ferrell. Who else in this ad for Old Milwaukee? It aired in just three markets, Sherman, Texas, Ardmore, Oklahoma and Glendive, Montana. It's become a tradition of sorts for Ferrell. Last year, he filmed as different ad for old Milwaukee that aired only in Nebraska. He actually shot one that I've watched online in my hometown, Davenport, Iowa. Go look at it on YouTube. It's super funny and I haven't quite figured out the point that's so funny.

SAMBOLIN: That's worse than Worse.

ROMANS: Other top CNN Trends, head to

SAMBOLIN: All right. Late night laughs now, David Letterman face-to- face with the butt of many of his joke, New Jersey governor Chris Christie.


DAVID LETTERMAN, HOST, "LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN": I've made jokes about you, not just one or two, not just ongoing here and there, intermittent but --



GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: I didn't know this was going to be this long.



LETTERMAN: Now wait a minute, maybe you can do that sort of thing in your state, buddy.



ROMANS: You can't litter like that in Jersey.

SAMBOLIN: EARLY START continues right now.