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Alabama Hostage Safe with Family; "Stuff You Should Know"; Ravens Victory Parade Today

Aired February 5, 2013 - 06:30   ET



CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: Safe and sound. A 5-year-old hostage back with his family this morning after an FBI raid to rescue him, but the process now to deal with what happened just beginning for the boy and his family.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: Pictures are worth 1,000 words, but was this one worth suspending a freshman from his high school?

ROMANS: And firing away. That's CNN's Piers Morgan doing the last thing you might expect, pulling the trigger on a powerful rifle.

Welcome back to EARLY START, everyone. I'm Christine Romans. John Berman co-hosts "STARTING POINT" a little later on.

SAMBOLIN: And I'm Zoraida Sambolin. It is Tuesday morning, 29 minutes past the hour here.

And our top story, after nearly a week after being held hostage in an underground bunker, a kindergartener will get to spend his birthday tomorrow in his family's arms. An FBI team stormed that bunker in Midland City, Alabama, and safely rescued little Ethan. His kidnapper Jimmy Lee Dykes died during the raid.

Dykes boarded Ethan's school bus last Tuesday and shot and killed the driver, Charles Poland, and held Ethan in his bunker for those days.

So, after negotiations deteriorated, the FBI went in for the rescue. Ethan is said to be OK, at least physically.


WALLY OLSON, DALE COUNTY SHERIFF: This little boy. He has been through a lot, endured a lot. And by the grace of God, he's -- you know, he's OK.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is doing fine. He's laughing, joking, playing, eating. The things that you would expect a normal 5 to 6-year-old young man to do.


SAMBOLIN: I want to bring in Patricia Saunders. She's a clinical forensic psychologist.

And we just heard that gentleman say that, you know, he is well. What we don't know is psychologically, how he is doing? We've heard is he laughing, joking, eating and coloring. But does that paint a real picture of how is he emotionally?

PATRICIA SAUNDERS, CLINICAL FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST: Great question. And it's a good sign prognostically.

The most important thing that we want to do with anybody who has suffered trauma, especially extreme trauma like Ethan suffered, is to provide a feeling of safety, and the more normal and interactive he is, especially because he has Asperger's syndrome, the better the chances of his recovery.

What we worry about are the kids that stop talking, the kids who withdraw, the kids who can't stop crying or the kids who are just numb. So, it's a good sign.

SAMBOLIN: Well, little Ethan was taken off a school bus, on his way to school, you know, a routine that he has all the time. So, as a parent, what do you do? What do say to Ethan? And do you allow him out of your sight?

SAUNDERS: It's hard to do for any parent. For the next X number of weeks, I would not. As part of the safety, I think it's important that a family member, preferably his mom or his grandmom, go with him on the bus, and be with him as much as possible. Even in class.

And that the family and the psychologist and doctors attending to him, speak to the teachers, speak to the principal, speak to the bus drivers, so they have a good idea what this child has suffered. And you know, U.S. time for him to take baby steps back to normal by asking him. He's 6 years old.

SAMBOLIN: Well, 5 years old now, he's about to be 6 years old tomorrow. So, what we do know so far is that he witnessed the shooting of the bus driver. We know that he was in that bunker all of those days.

And what we don't know whether or not he saw when Dykes was killed. And so, how do you then have a little boy end up feeling safe again? As a parent, what can you do?

SAUNDERS: I don't know that he'll ever feel safe again, but because is he still very young and dependent on his family, and what I understand is a very close-knit, faith-based community, they can do a lot of repair. These memories are always going to be with him. But he can learn to manage them and managing them in a way that doesn't intrude in his life.

Now, we don't know what degree of Asperger's he has. Asperger's is a mild form of autism. If he has a more severe form of Asperger's, it's going to be harder for him, because his anxiety level is going to be a lot higher and kids with Asperger's have a lot of trouble processing and controlling their emotions. SAMBOLIN: You know, I wondered when they said that he had Asperger's, because they're just a social development there, that if that was actually a good thing for this little boy that he is enduring all of this. Is that possible?

SAUNDERS: I think that's excellent point. That kids who have a little more severe form of Asperger's have trouble making attachments to human beings -- other human beings, and to getting it socially. So, that may serve as a protective barrier, but the problem is his anxiety --


SAUNDERS: -- which is intrinsic to autism. That's why these kids need as much routine as possible.

SAMBOLIN: Is there any chance -- and this is my last question -- is there any chance, because of his young age, he is only 5 years old, that he will forget this as he grows?

SAUNDERS: No, because he's almost 6, the memory systems in his brain are pretty well formed. He'll never forget it, but he will learn how to manage the traumatic and terrifying memories.

SAMBOLIN: It's time for healing, no doubt about it.

Patricia Saunders, clinical forensic psychologist -- appreciate your time this morning. Thank you.

SAUNDERS: Thank you.

SAMBOLIN: Christine?

ROMANS: All right. Thirty-four minutes after the hour.

Taking a look at the top trends on this morning.

Former presidential candidate Ron Paul being criticized for a tweet concerning ex-Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, that Navy SEAL who was gunned down at a Texas shooting range, Kyle was a decorated Iraq war veteran and the deadliest sniper in American history. The man suspected of killing him, Eddie Ray Routh, may have had a mental illness related to his military service.

In response to the tragedy, Ron Paul tweeted, "Chris Kyle's death seems to confirm that he who lives by the sword died by the sword. Treating PTSD at a firing range doesn't make sense."

A high school student in Florence, Arizona, says he was suspended for using a photo of a gun as a wallpaper on his school-issued computer. Daniel McClaine knew his high school had a policy against harassing, threatening, or illegal material, but Daniel says he sees nothing wrong of an AK-47 on a flag.

(BEGIN VIDEO LCIP) DANIEL MCCLAINE, JR., FRESHMAN, POSTON BUTTE HIGH SCHOOL: I think this is ridiculous. What should have happened is they should have just warned me and told me that's not right. You shouldn't put that wallpaper on there.


ROMANS: After Daniel's father went to a local news station, the family says school officials rescinded the remainder of his three-day suspension and allowed him to return to class yesterday. School officials are refusing to discuss specifics of this case.

SAMBOLIN: CNN's Piers Morgan bringing the gun control debate to the heart of gun country. The CNN anchor took last night's show to the suburbs of Houston. Morgan admitting it was exciting to fire a semiautomatic weapon at a local range, but still passionately advocating for a ban on such weapons.

Thirty-six minutes past the hour here.

And real guys getting their geek on. Coming up, we'll to the men behind the TV show, "Stuff You Should Know." That's turning science on its ear. Bring the kiddies to the TV.


SAMBOLIN: So, look who decides to show up to work this morning, about two hours late -- John Berman.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Deep down inside, I can tell you miss me. Deep down -- deep, deep down.

SAMBOLIN: You have a look for what's ahead on "STARTING POINT". (INAUDIBLE) a little later.

BERMAN: Coming up on "STARTING POINT," we'll be talking about Ethan, that little boy freed after spending nearly a week trapped inside the bunker. The kidnapper is now dead. We will have new details about the dramatic rescue and the looming question: how does the 5-year-old boy recover now? We're going to talk to a kidnapping survivor, as well as a psychologist with an expert insight, and also the police who headed up the case.

And then, the face of the king revealed, in such a handsome face it is. More than 500 years after its death.


BERMAN: Looks good for a guy 50 years old. Britain's King Richard III's bones are found, and scientists were able to recreate this face. We're going to talk with the woman who spearheaded the campaign to clear the king's name.

Plus, so -- are Americans more -- are we more into committed or casual relationships? What do you think?


BERMAN: is here with an exclusive look at their new study. We'll give you the answers breaking down new dating trends in America. I think the answer is casual.

SAMBOLIN: Oh, really? I was being sarcastic.

BERMAN: Yes. Friends with benefits is huge now. It's all the rage.

SAMBOLIN: I can't wait. I'm going to tune in for that, Mr. Berman.

BERMAN: Excellent.

SAMBOLIN: Thank for that.

Christine, over to you.

ROMANS: I'm here -- I'm sitting with the guys from "Stuff You Should Know", talking about the Richard III story. It's so interesting because it is cool to geek out on stuff like that. Science Channel's new primetime show, "Stuff You Should Know," sounds like a show all of us should be watching. It's based on the popular podcast downloaded by 5 million monthly.

It features two regular guys trying to explain the secrets of the universe, and the emphasis on trying to. Take a listen.


CHUCK BRYANT, "STUFF YOU SHOULD KNOW": They believe bees evolve from these wasp-like creatures that would inject and lay their eggs inside of their prey.


BRYANT: Yes, just pretty gnarly. But we do need to point out. You don't need to be afraid. Bees are not predators.


BRYANT: They're not after you.


BRYANT: Their stingers are there for defense.

CLARK: Right. It's like you did go something if a bee comes after you.

BRYANT: Yes, it's all your fault.


ROMANS: The show premiered on January 19th -- and this Saturday, they're going to have a marathon showing on Science Channel from noon to 2:30 p.m. Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant join us now.

So you guys are just regular guys trying to show that it's cool to know stuff.

CLARK: Yes, we're pretty regular.


BRYANT: Yes, I'm glad you set us up as regular. That's good. The expectations are low.

ROMANS: What are some of the things that you have found? I mean, some of the interesting facts that you found, that you learned more because you have been trying to explain?

CLARK: So, we've got, you know, the show on Science Channel on Saturday, February 9th, coming up. And we also have a podcast, and we have recorded 500 podcasts so far.

And we've learned just about everything you can think of, from credit default swaps to bees. One of the best facts I have learned is about photons. It takes 100,000 years for a photon to be created at the core of the sun and then to make it to the surface of the sun, right? But then it takes like eight minutes I think to get from the surface of the sun to earth.


BRYANT: So, the light that when you go outside, and any sun that hits you is 100,000 years and 8 minutes old.

CLARK: Right.

HOLMES: Now, that's interesting.

Now, we were just talking about Richard III, and sort of that other thing. I mean, there really is an appetite for people to know more about how stuff works, how things happen.

One of the really interesting episodes you had was about China. I mean, we kind of people laugh about all the Chinese think they can change the weather. Although they actually -- they actually did, and they actually can.

I want to listen about that.


BRYANT: Three, two, one.

CLARK: Oh! Wow. So it's just going to break up there or --

BRYANT: What do you mean?

CLARK: I mean, doesn't it have to be tiny crystals to see the cloud? BRYANT: Oh, crap.

CLARK: We shot the equivalent of an economy sized can of pork and beans 3,000 feet into the air.


BRYANT: Let's get out of here.


ROMANS: All right. So, you're regular guys trying to show how things work. That was an experiment in cloud seeding, something the Chinese have tried to do actually to make it rain or to make that rain. Explain that.

BRYANT: Yes. And not just the Chinese. They did in England in 1950s and inadvertently flooded out a town. And then during the Vietnam War, the U.S. military used as a tactic to try and rain out the Ho Chi Minh trail, and may or may not have extended monsoon season that year.


ROMANS: Why do you think people are so interesting in finding out how stuff works? You know, I mean, kind of, you know, science and map gets kind of a bad rap in school, history sometimes, too. But now, people really are hungry to find out how stuff works now.

CLARK: I think the age are just kind of going around and assuming and being kind of dumb and just going through life like that, it's kind of over. It feels like braininess is kind of taking over. And that's good news for us.


CLARK: Because, you know, we kind of straddle both worlds. We're laid back, but at the same time, we want to know what's going on, and we want to understand things, and get to the bottom of things. So, it's great that other people are getting into that as well.

ROMANS: The thing is you guys don't come of very geeky at all. You're just like normal guys.

CLARK: Thank you very much.


ROMANS: Do you consider yourselves geek?

CLARK: No, I don't.


BRYANT: No. And you know, when we go out and do events for the fans and staff, our demographic is just all over the map. You know, some geeks here and there, but like super cool people, and families, and kids, and old people, and this is all over the map.

ROMANS: All right. We can see if you guys come up with next (ph). Josh and Chuck, really nice to meet you. Best of luck to you. And, you know, it's cool to be smart. It's cool to want to want to know how things work, Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: I was going to ask, who is this geared toward, because my 14-year-old would love this.

ROMANS: Yes, who is the geared toward?

BRYANT: Yes. A 14-year-old would love the show, actually. It's got the right amount of comedy and silliness and still lot of fun facts.

CLARK: We've had people who say that they were turned on to it by their college professors, so everybody listens to it.

BRYANT: It's clean. It's family friendly.

ROMANS: Good, clean. I heard the --

SAMBOLIN: I love it.

BRYANT: Yes. That's just as bad as it gets.


ROMANS: All right, Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: That's what makes it cool for the kids. Thank you very much.

Forty-six minutes past the hour. People in the northeast and the Great Lakes, still ahead, look out your window, there might be a little snow on the ground for you this morning. It's a bit of a gift there from meteorologist, Indra Petersons. She is live in Atlanta for us.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes. Pretty obvious where it feels like winter this morning. Take a look at our tolls just yesterday. Ashtabula, 16 inches of snow. A foot of snow out for Chagrin Falls, even Saybrook, Ohio seen just under a foot, and it doesn't look like it's stopping any time soon. Cleveland, Ohio was seen five consecutive days of snow. Looks like we're going to get another one.

We're talking about snow from the Great Lakes all the way into the northeast. But again, the bigger picture still remains that we're warming up, just not that in that region. Down to the south, towards Texas, temperatures, 10, 15 degrees above normal. We're loving this. Look at the 80s out toward San Antonio today.

Once again, you get that warm air banking up against tat cold air. You pool in moisture right from the gulf. You get a couple of lows that go by. And we are going to be talking about a threat for some severe weather into the southern plains. Now, remember, nothing like last week, but nonetheless, a chance for some severe thunderstorms to pop up.

We're going to be watching this, especially considering we have Mardi Gras. So, definitely some wild weather we'll be picking up as we go through Wednesday night into Thursday. Otherwise again, we're looking at kind of the contrast across the country. You look at the temperatures. We talked about the 70s in Texas like cold air up towards the northeast New York today.

You're still seeing just 30s. And again, that cold air still remains, and even some showers kind of picking in through the Pacific Northwest. So, overall, that is the big picture, still watching some showers out towards the gulf, and yes, the snow showers remain at least for one more day in toward the northeast. Sorry, guys. It will get better at some point. I promise.

SAMBOLIN: It's OK. It's only temporary. Indra Petersons live for us in Atlanta. Thank you.

Forty-seven minutes past the hour. $600,000 gone in about 60 seconds. Coming up, the Super Bowl play that cost a furniture store a whole boat load of money.


SAMBOLIN: Welcome back to EARLY START. Fifty-one minutes past the hour. The game is over, but you know the partying is not. The city of Baltimore has big plans for their Super Bowl winning team today. "Bleacher Report" Vince Cellini is here with us to tell us about the Ravens victory tour. Although, I was routing for the 49ers, but go ahead and tell us.

VINCE CELLINI, BLEACHER REPORT: All right. A lot of people were, but here, may I continue?


CELLINI: Huge day for Baltimore, and Tuesday is not an official holiday in the city of Baltimore, but thousands of kids won't be in school, and many local businesses will close their doors all to honor the world champion, Ravens, centerpiece of this morning's downtown parade.

The players arrived back in town on Monday after Sunday's 34-31 Super Bowl XLVII win over the 49ers. And the fans were waiting, eager to celebrate the city's first championship in 12 years. The party continues with a downtown procession starting at 10:45 a.m. in front of city hall. It continues right to M & T Bank Stadium.

Back in 2001, 200,000 showed up, perhaps, even more will be there this year. Meanwhile, Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco had a detour on his way to Baltimore, the Annual Disney World Parade. The game MVP carried out a tradition that started back in 1987 with Giants quarterback Phil Simms. It featured athletes from baseball, hockey, and the Olympics.

Baltimore is going to be slightly chillier than Orlando. Temperatures expected in the low 40s under cloudy skies. Meanwhile, Gardner's Furniture in Baltimore told customers who bought items there between January 31st and 3:00 p.m. day of game, that those items would be free if the Ravens returned out of the opening kickoff or third quarter kickoff, or a touchdown. And sure enough, Jacoby Jones took this one all the way.

It appears that store will give away about $600,000 in furnishings, fortunately, and insurance policy will cover them. The policy costs $12,000. The store advertising, priceless. We just gave them another mention. And finally, reigning NBA MVP Lebron James outdid himself Monday night. Thirty-one points for the Heat. That's impressive, but he was 13 of 14 shooting from the field, a career best. That's 92.9 percent shooting.

He also had eight rebounds, eight assists, and he marked the league's best shooting performance with at least that many attempts in the last 18 years. It did help. Lebron made nine shots of two feet or closer against the league's worst team, the Charlotte Bobcats.

And don't forget, you can check out a complete breakdown to Lebron's big night on as well as the rest of your entertaining sports news. Whether you're a 49ers fans or Ravens fan, you know, it's interesting to watch the fallout from the Super Bowl.

SAMBOLIN: I happen to also enjoy Lebron, so I'll go check that out. Vince Cellini, thank you so much.

CELLINI: Thank you.

ROMANS: All right. Apple's newest product, the iPad 4, will be available in stores today. The new iPad comes equipped with a whopping 128 gigabytes of storage, but all that memory -- that's a lot of memory, has got a hefty price tag. The highest end iPad starts at $799 for Wi-Fi only.


ROMANS: And $929 for high-speed conductivity. Almost a thousand bucks.

All right. Up next, today's "Best Advice" from one of the Oscar nominees behind "Life of Pi."

SAMBOLIN: And just minutes away on "Starting Point, see how Chris Christie got the last laugh on David Letterman.


SAMBOLIN: Fifty-eight minutes past the hour. We wrap it up as always with "Best Advice."

ROMANS: And today, we hear from Oscar nominated "Life of Pi" screenwriter, David Magee.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DAVID MAGEE, SCREENWRITER, "LIFE OF PI": I think for anyone starting out, you wonder how am I going to get into this business, how am I going to get this job, how am I going to get into this career and someone told me when I was starting out that if you just stay around long enough and keep showing up, you'll get your chance, and then the only question is, are you ready when that chance is offered to you?

So, as long as you keep preparing for the chance, it will come to you. So, that, I really thought that was the right advice. It took a while for me, but I got there.


SAMBOLIN: And be ready and ready he was, right?

ROMANS: That's right.

SAMBOLIN: All right. So, that's it for EARLY START. I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

ROMANS: I'm Christine Romans. "STARTING POINT" begins right now.