CNN CNN


 

Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Winds Swirl in Rhode Island; 50 People Rescued in Massachusetts; California Manhunt Continues; Child Killed from Carbon Monoxide Poisoning; The Northeast Blizzard; 55th Grammys Tomorrow; Video Shows Rogue Cop in Training

Aired February 9, 2013 - 16:00   ET

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


DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN ANCHOR: Good afternoon, everyone. I'm Deborah Feyerick here in Atlanta. And we've got the hour's top stories for you.

Right now in Massachusetts, a driving travel ban is being lifted. An order officials put in place yesterday to keep people off the roads as a massive blizzard hit. The worst snow may be over for Cape Cod as blizzard and coastal flood warnings have been lifted.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEAN KELLY, REPORTER: This storm surge is quite high. We've been seeing waves out here that are 20 feet, easy. I mean, 15 feet regularly coming in. And as we pan along the bay here, you could see just how high it's getting.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FEYERICK: On Long Island, stranded motorists had to be dug out of their cars. Long Island was one of the hardest-hit areas of New York. A man in New Hampshire also got pummeled and three counties in Maine are still under a blizzard warning.

Well, searchers bring out the big hardware in Big Bear. They're using helicopters, snowcats, armored vehicles with snow chance to track down an accused killer who is threatening more violence. A big question now, has the trail gone cold in the snow?

The first lady joins mourners at the funeral of a Chicago teen. Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed just days after she performed at the presidential inauguration. Her mother says that no parent should ever go through what she is going through now.

More fury today over the hacking of Bush family e-mails that were posted on a gossip Web site. They include messages from both of the Bush presidents and family communications sent during the elder Bush's recent hospital stay. Today a spokesman for former Florida governor Jeb Bush called it a, quote, "outrageous breach of privacy," unquote.

In Rhode Island, 40-mile-per-hour winds continue to blow in an estimated 175,000 people are reportedly out of power.

Joining me now by phone is Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee. Tell us about the conditions in your state, Governor.

GOV. LINCOLN CHAFEE, RHODE ISLAND (via phone): We had a bad storm here with heavy, heavy snow starting with the wet snow early, which stuck to the trees, which brought them down on the power lines. And then the temperatures dropping. And then high, high winds all combining to a lot of power outages.

We have our challenges here getting people's power back on as we see temperatures dropping.

FEYERICK: Now you're also giving credit to officials who you say have done a good job warning residents to get out of the storm's path early. So what does that suggest?

CHAFEE: Well, we -- the storm track absolutely on forecast. It was spot-on to the forecast. So we had lots of warning as to what would occur and anticipation of power outages. So people losing their heat, this is something that we did anticipate.

And we have the shelters up and running. Most people are going to their neighbor's house, the family's houses. I've just been visiting shelters around the state and not seeing a high volume of users at those shelters despite that high number that you said, 175,000 people without power right now.

So far they're not availing themselves of the shelters, which I assume their friends and neighbors are helping them out.

FEYERICK: And Governor --

CHAFEE: But for those that do have power. A generator.

FEYERICK: OK. And Governor, is there any suggestion as to when trucks may be able to get to some of those downed power lines to get the power back on?

CHAFEE: Well, the -- the big main transmission lines they tell me are close to being fixed and that -- and then the feeder lines come after that. So I'm optimistic we're going to have a large number back on shortly.

FEYERICK: OK. And one of the pictures -- one of the images that we're seeing is that of an ambulance that was there making its way through the snow. Did hospitals report probably a lower volume, but did they have to go out? Were there any calls in terms of getting people into the hospital on an emergency basis?

CHAFEE: We've had our full hands full on many counts. Some of the hospital generators were having some issues, some nursing home generators were having some issues. But one I hear so far we've come through it without any major life incidents or life loss or any -- major injuries. We've had various fires around the state, but so far from what I hear, no major injuries or any life lost.

FEYERICK: We're looking at some of the images during the storm. But we did also see some images post storm. It looks quite pretty out there. Are you still, though, warning residents to stay indoors as much as they can?

CHAFEE: Well, absolutely. The roads are -- still getting many of the roads plowed away from snow. The National Grid, trying to get the utility wires back, get the power back. So everybody -- using their common sense. And at the same time, they want to get out and shovel out, and, of course, you always have to urge caution there with the heavy snow, deep, deep heavy snow if any kind of heart issues or anything along those lines, just be careful. So most people are really using their common sense. But this is a bad storm.

FEYERICK: And finally, you know, in many respects, it was a good thing that this hit on a weekend, when people were able to stay in. Do you expect Providence and the rest of Rhode Island to be back up and running first thing Monday morning?

CHAFEE: Yes. As you said, we count our blessings, even with a bad storm such as this. And as you said, coming when it did, with the weekend here, where we can really tackle the clean-up, is going to help. And yes, I do anticipate Monday being back, with the clean-up all day tomorrow, getting more of those power outages solved. Let's hope that we're up and running on Monday.

FEYERICK: Pretty remarkable. All right. Governor Lincoln Chafee, thank you very much. We appreciate your bringing us up to date on the very latest going on there in Rhode Island. Thank you.

CHAFEE: You're welcome.

FEYERICK: Well, coastal flooding has been a major problem with this storm. In New Hampshire, multiple seawalls have collapsed after the blizzard collided with the highest tide of the month.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

NICK SPINETTO, WMUR REPORTER: And anything that wasn't anchored down was washed ashore. There's these rocks everywhere, some wood. Anchors that were -- buoys, rather, that were out on the water were all washed ashore.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FEYERICK: Now coastal flood warning remains in effect along the region and state officials have warned residents to stay away from the coastline. They say clean-up costs could top $2 million.

And the sea is also a problem in Salisbury, Massachusetts. That's where some 50 people had to be rescued after waves crashed into several homes.

Bob Cook is the emergency management director for Salisbury. He joins me now by phone.

And, sir, some of these houses were knocked off their foundations. What is the first step you take in this situation? BOB COOK, SALISBURY, MASSACHUSETTS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT DIRECTOR (via phone): The first step that we took was to obviously (INAUDIBLE) get people out of their homes and get them into a safe shelter, which this kind of took us by surprise. All that could happen (INAUDIBLE). We were able to get everybody and get them out safe.

FEYERICK: Was this an area, sir, and we're having a little bit of difficulty hearing you. But was this an area where people had been told that they should evacuate?

COOK: We had recommended -- we had not put a mandatory evacuation on the place. We had recommended for people instead go and stay with family inside. But we also opened up a shelter last evening to accommodate any people that didn't have anywhere to go. We publicized that. Obviously, once that started happening this morning, we ordered the mandatory evacuation from the beach town areas.

FEYERICK: OK. Sir, thank you very much. We really appreciate it. We know you've got your hands full there, so we'll let you go.

And just to recap, he said that they were able to get people out of their homes. There wasn't a mandatory evacuation. And they did also open a shelter in order to help some of these folks. Those homes knocked off their foundations.

Well, back to the major winter storm that has hammered the northeast. For parts of New England, the storm has tuned deadly. At least six people have died, most of them in tragic accidents. Heavy snow is still coming down in eastern Massachusetts. About 400,000 customers are still without power.

Ali Velshi joins us now from Dennis Port on Cape Cod.

Ali, the travel ban has just been lifted in the state. I'm taking a look at you right now, and -- well, it seems like possibly it is easing up out there. Anyone venturing out?

ALI VELSHI, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, yes. It's a storm. Yes, in fact, I've seen a few people walking around now. I mean, people have had this cabin fever for the last 24 hours. They're getting out. Some people were walking around. This feels like a winter storm. There's still snow coming down, as you can see. The winds have dropped. We're still in the 20-mile-an-hour range, 20 to 25-mile-an-hour range.

It's still about 22 degrees Fahrenheit right now. So there's still stuff going on. We're -- but we're at the back of the storm. In fact, the storm has mostly passed over. It's not over, though. There are still parts of Maine getting hit quite badly. The northeastern parts of Maine. And this is going into Nova Scotia and the Canadian Maritime.

So the storm continues to be dangerous and deadly in other parts. But Massachusetts does seem to be getting past the worst of it now, just a little bit left here in Massachusetts. Still some more snow coming down. This is normal snow. It's light. It's pretty snow. But it's still accumulating. So there could be those tree branches that got some snow, got some ice on them. And the next half an inch, which may be all that's left here, could be the thing that makes them snap, so people have to be very careful, number one, that they're not wandering around in places that could be dangerous.

Number two, you know, we saw -- you said there have only been a few losses of life. But one of them was an 11-year-old boy in Boston who was warming up after helping his father shovel the snow in the car. The car exhaust was back up and he got carbon monoxide into him. And that's something that's very dangerous.

Keep in mind, people are getting out. We see a lot of people cleaning their cars now. Be careful of this. There are still dangers in this storm. But it is not over. There are parts of the northeast, the sun is setting, starting to set. But where it's been -- it's been sunny, and windy, here in Massachusetts, particularly on Cape Cod, it is still cold, it is still windy, and there is still substantial snow coming down.

Also, you mentioned the coastal flooding. There are parts of the state that have been overrun the -- where the lake -- the ocean did come ashore, causing a great deal of damage. But it does seem to be north of these parts, and in Cape Cod, on the northeast coast of Cape Cod. This part, the south part of Cape Cod, seems to have avoided most of the damage. So the problem here is of the power outages, of the 630,000 plus power outages in the northeast, the overwhelming majority of them are in Massachusetts. It is cold. It is nightfall.

And as Lincoln Chafee just told you, you know, we're not in position in many places for bucket trucks to be getting out and fixing utility lines. The main feeder trunks are under repair and are remedying themselves. But if you've got downed lines in your community, as you can see, this weather still isn't good enough for those to be repaired -- Deb.

FEYERICK: Yes. Absolutely. And I think people are probably starting to breathe a little bit of a sigh of relief as the storm starts heading out to sea.

VELSHI: Yes.

FEYERICK: That, in fact, the worst is over. So now they know exactly what they're dealing with and how they're going to deal with it.

All right, Ali Velshi for us there in Cape Cod, thanks so much. We appreciate all your work today.

Well, still ahead, two years ago, the lead singer of Alabama Shakes was working at the Postal Service. Now she's at the Grammys.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FEYERICK: Well, we're continuing to follow the winter storm that's blanketed New England in white. Take a look at these pictures from Massachusetts' Cape Cod, where the storm isn't over. At least not yet. Though it does seem to be winding down. Folks have been evacuated out of areas along the shoreline, where the tide is rising. Six states are still in a state of emergency, and over 635,000 people are still without power.

But first, here are your other top stories. Before we do that, though, what we do want to do is we want to get back to Bob Cook, he's Emergency Management director for Salisbury.

And we had been speaking with you earlier on a bad phone connection. I'm so delighted that you called back. We understand that some 50 people had to be rescued after waves crashed into several houses. What can you tell us?

COOK (via phone): I'm sorry?

FEYERICK: What can you tell us about the waves that were crashing into those homes? It sounds so much like Hurricane Sandy.

COOK: Yes, it's a lot like Hurricane Sandy, in that it happened early on, well before high tide, and with no wanting whatsoever. All of -- all of a sudden, the storm surge got a drive in the waves into buildings on the ocean front at Salisbury Beach. Necessitating us to start evacuating several people upwards of 50 people. And we had several buildings that received structural damage that are in the process of being checked right now to evaluate them, whether they're habitable or not.

FEYERICK: Now what's interesting is that the National Guard, you called the National Guard, they came in. Essentially they were dealing with not only the blizzard, but also the water and the wave conditions at the same time. It's almost like a double whammy.

COOK: Yes, it was like a double whammy, because we had flooding in the streets, as well as flooding coming from the oceanfront over the sand dunes into the properties that we were trying to evacuate the people from. In one case we had to use a bucket from a backhoe in order to get the people out because of the water flow that was coming in at the same time.

FEYERICK: Now did everybody get out safely? Were there any injuries, even minor injuries, or was everyone OK?

COOK: There was one person in a building on North End Boulevard that was in the process of moving some furniture when a wave came along and broke out his picture window. It knocked him over and caused a minor laceration on his hand. But fortunately for him, that was the only injury that we saw from the storm.

FEYERICK: Now were you expecting the waves surge? Had you warned people to evacuate their homes?

COOK: We had -- we had issued information from the previous day to advise people that they should seek other arrangements prior to the storm arriving on Friday evening. And once this issue started to raise on Saturday morning, we immediately issued a code red announcement, issuing a mandatory evacuation for the beachfront. FEYERICK: OK. All right. Well, Robert Cook, thank you so much. We really appreciate your calling back. You're the Emergency Management director for Salisbury. And thankfully, those 50 people are in fact OK now. We appreciate it.

Well, we want to go now to Boston where the blizzard has claimed a young life. A 12-year-old boy died inside his father's car. Jason Carroll is in Boston right now.

Jason, so, so tragic. What are you learning?

OK. We're going to re-establish audio in just a minute. Obviously, this is a storm that some people have been injured and there have been a few fatalities. Clearly when you go out in weather like this, you never know what is going to happen. And unfortunately sometimes it is the thing you're least expecting that happens.

OK. We are going to re-establish a connection with Jason Carroll. Other top stories that we're following this morning.

From Alabama, the first video of that little boy rescued from captivity. This is Ethan just days after he was freed from a kidnapper who held him in a bunker. Look at him, he's all smiles. And well, at least -- apparently not outwardly showing any signs of trauma. Ethan's church hosted a big 6th birthday party for him this week and many of his neighbors and friends joined the celebration with cards, gifts and lots of good wishes that he is safe and back with his family.

An Amish man behind a string of beard-cutting attacks has been sentenced to 15 years behind bars. Samuel Mullet was convicted of religiously motivated hate crimes. To the Amish, a beard signifies faith and manhood. Several of Mullet's followers who participated in the attacks received shorter sentences.

Well, an urgent story on the opposite side of the country now. Searchers back in the rugged, snowy, mountains east of Los Angeles. They are trying to pick up the trail of an alleged cop killer. Christopher Dorner is the fired L.A. police officer now a fugitive, now accused of murder. He has threatened to kill police and their families.

His skills and his training give him advantages that many fugitives don't have. And they make him even more dangerous. Police say he is armed and he is considered very dangerous.

CNN's Casey Wian following this story from L.A.

Where do things stand?

CASEY WIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Deborah, where things stand is this search continues from the U.S./Mexico border south of San Diego to Las Vegas where Christopher Dorner had a residence. While that active search is continuing, investigators are poring over lots of evidence in the trail that he has left behind since the first murders happened on Sunday in the town of Irvine, California. Now CNN has obtained some exclusive surveillance video that shows Christopher Dorner allegedly dropping some material into a dumpster outside of an auto accessories store in National City, which is near San Diego or south of Los Angeles. This video -- surveillance video obtained from that auto accessories store on Monday. That was 12 hours after Keith Lawrence and his fiancee, Monica Quan, the daughter of a retired Los Angeles police department official, they were gunned down Sunday night in Irvine, California.

The store owner's employee found these items in the dumpster, behind the store Monday morning. Let's listen to what that owner had to say about how it all happened.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Monday morning, when I -- when I came in, opened the shop, and business as usual, one of the employees went to throw the trash. After he came back, he came back with a clip, like a magazine, full of bullets. A belt, a military belt, and a helmet. And he brought it to me, and said, where did you find it. He said, I found it in the back of the dumpster when I went to throw the trash. So I right away took possession of it and notified Mark (INAUDIBLE). And --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WIAN: Now, that material has been turned over to -- that video has been turned over to the Irvine Police Department, which will not confirm that it is actually Christopher Dorner. But we have seen a still photograph that the Irvine Police Department released, taken from that same surveillance camera.

We have looked at the still photo, matched it up to that surveillance video, and it is the same video. Also, you can see his truck there, the truck that was found burnt in the community of Big Bear, California. That truck has now been -- is in the custody of the Irvine Police Department. They continue to process it and try to find any evidence that they can.

Other material that the Irvine Police Department has collected is also being processed by the FBI. Still no clue, though, by law enforcement where Dorner is right now, Deborah.

FEYERICK: You know, Casey, we're looking at the burned-out pictures of the vehicle. What's interesting is we understand that an axle on that car broke. So it may not have been that he planned to abandon the car deliberately. But because once the axle broke, it couldn't go anywhere.

Have police commented on that particular thing? Maybe that threw a wrench in his plans somehow.

WIAN: Possibly. They have not commented that I'm aware of on that specific piece of evidence. They are investigating this case along several different fronts. You have several different law enforcement agencies. Irvine, California, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department. The Riverside Police Department.

Several law enforcement agencies are investigating several crimes that happened throughout the - or early part of last week, through Thursday, when those police officers were shot. This is a very multi -- it's a multi-agency investigation, and they're looking into every possible avenue.

FEYERICK: Yes. And this is so serious because Chris Dorner is essentially hunting police officers, and he is not afraid to die, in his manifesto, he says, "I do not fear death, as I died long ago on January 2nd, 2009," the day that he was let go from the Los Angeles Police Department.

Casey Wian, thank you so much. Of course, the -- we'll check back with you for the very latest a little later on.

Well, we will continue to follow the latest developments also of the storm, including the pictures and video you're sending us. We'll take a look at those, just ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FEYERICK: Good afternoon, everyone. I'm Deborah Feyerick in Atlanta. Here are this hour's top stories.

Right now, in Massachusetts, a driving travel ban is lifted. This is what it looked like just yesterday when officials asked people to stay off the roads when that massive blizzard hit.

The worst snow may be over for Cape Cod as blizzard and coastal flood warnings have been lifted. But here's how a reporter from our affiliate described the situation on the coast earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: This storm surge is quite high. We've been seeing waves out here that are 20 feet, easy. I mean, 15 feet regularly, coming in. And as we pan along the bay here, you can see just how high it's getting.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FEYERICK: Maine and New Hampshire also got pummeled, and three counties in Maine are still under a blizzard warning.

The Long Island Expressway and Sunrise Highway are closed to all nonemergency vehicles. Hundreds of cars are stranded on the expressway because of the snow. Many of the people in the cars, well, they've been rescued. But some are still out there. Authorities say they're doing everything they can to get everyone and make sure that they are warm.

More fury today over the hacking of Bush family e-mails that were posted on a gossip Web site. The postings include messages from both of the Bush presidents and family communications sent during the elder Bush's recent hospital stay. Today a spokeswoman for former Florida Governor Jeb Bush called it a, quote, "outrageous breach of privacy."

Well, let's get back now to Jason Carroll live in Boston.

And, Jason, you were learning more about the tragedy involving that 12-year-old boy. What do you know?

JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Deb, it's just an incredibly sad story. It happened early this afternoon. And much like a lot of people, a man and his son had headed out to dig out their car. As you can see, in this neighborhood here, we've been seeing it happen all day long. So basically, he had come out, he had cleared one side of his car, his son got cold and decided to go inside to stay warm.

He was inside the car, Debbie, from maybe 10, maybe 15 minutes. But unbeknownst to the boy's father, the tailpipe was clogged with snow. And looking at these cars here in this neighborhood, and throughout the city, you can see how easy that could happen. Unfortunately, the young boy became overcome by carbon monoxide.

They brought him outside of the car. The young boy was unresponsive. Neighbors and paramedics tried to revive the boy. He went into cardiac arrest. And unfortunately a short time later, once he got to hospital, he was pronounced dead.

Incredibly tragic story and also a reminder, even though the storm has passed, there are still potentially dangerous situations that still remain behind the storm. And, in fact, I reached out to the mayor's office just about an hour and a half ago.

The mayor's office releasing a statement saying, in part, "The news of this tragic accident is a sad reminder that the danger of the storm is not over. Our hearts go out to the family and their friends who are learning of this tremendously sad accident."

And the mayor's office also putting out reminders, reminding people as they're coming out like you see in this neighborhood here, to clear out their cars. A lot of people willing to come out, because the travel ban was lifted a half hour ago.

But as people in Boston and other communities, whether in Rhode Island, whether you're in Connecticut or New York, you're coming out to clear out your car, to make sure that before you start running the car, make sure all parts of the car are clear -- Deb.

FEYERICK: All right. A tragic and vital lesson. Jason carol, thank you so much. We really appreciate your reporting today. Thanks.

Well, Connecticut, which got hit especially hard by the blizzard, is struggling to dig itself out. The National Guard is helping state crews to clear roads in the state. About 600,000 people, they're without power across the region. You can see what it looked like there. Most of those people without power, they are in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, Connecticut and Maine. We see the Massachusetts numbers there going down. They were going down. They are above 400,000 earlier today. That number has now dropped.

Connecticut, and that's where we find our Ashleigh Banfield.

So, Ashleigh, how is it out there?

ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, the sun is going down. And guess what happens when the sun goes down, Deb? The temperature goes down, too.

And the warning here tonight is -- I just feel like Debbie Downer all day -- warning, warning, warning. But this is serious. The temperature is going down, with a wind chill to minus 10, in some areas of Connecticut tonight.

And here comes another gust with blowing snow, which makes drifts like this a problem, because no matter how many times -- watch what's coming behind me at about four seconds, a plow -- no matter how many times a plow goes by, the snow keeps drifting.

So, yes, the governor lifted the travel ban a half hour ago. But he is begging people not to travel.

It's the same story everywhere throughout this blizzard zone. It is a mess. Have a look.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BANFIELD (voice-over): The feared monster nor'easter didn't disappoint, two feet of snow and in some places, plenty more. Like tens of thousands of New Englanders without power on Saturday.

GOV. DAN MALLOY (D), CONNECTICUT: This has been a record- breaking storm with snowfalls reported as great as 38 inches. Right now, our main priority is to clear roads.

BANFIELD: The numbers at the tell the tale. Milford, a whopping 38 inches. New Haven, 34. Bridgeport, 30.

Here in Wallingford, Connecticut, check out this local firefighter. He's 6'3" and yet still struggles just to march through nearly knee-high snow in order to check on locals and make any necessary rescues.

And in neighboring Massachusetts over two feet of snow fell in the western part of the state.

But in Boston, the mayor says the situation could have been much worse.

MAYOR THOMAS MENINO, BOSTON: I'm happy to report the city so far has weathered the storm well. No major power outages. No severe flooding. We still have a little way to go to get to the rest of the storm.

BANFIELD: This is the scene at Boston's Logan Airport today -- snowplows working around the clock. If the snowplows won't or can't come, some residents are taking matters into their own hands, shoveling the snow themselves to find their cars again.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hope this is my car.

CARROLL: How long have you been at it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: About an hour.

CARROLL: Looks like you've made some headway here. How much longer do you think you have to go?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At least two more.

BANFIELD: Across the region, driving is treacherous. If you don't have to venture out, officials say, please don't. As to the airports, they too are struggling to recover from closures and delays over the past 24 hours. More than 5,000 flights had to be cancelled, due to this walloping blizzard.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BANFIELD: And several thousand plows are blanketing these states, trying to clean up this mess. Who knows where they're going to be able to put it all until Mother Nature melts it.

Here's another thing the governor of this state has asked everyone to do -- please help to clear out a fire hydrant if it's near your home, because this is also becoming a big problem. And by the way, if you can se the car dealership behind me here, you can see many of the cars are drifting right up, and covered. This is also a problem for cars that shouldn't have been out on the road, and got stuck.

The governor has said one of the biggest impediments to getting life going again is all those abandoned cars, which plows can't get around, cause traffic back-ups and also make utility vehicles unable to do what they're here to do, which is very frustrating with thousands of people still without power, Deb.

FEYERICK: No question. What's so fascinating to me, you say they have lifted the travel ban and so people are traveling. Where are they going to go? Everything is closed.

All right. Ashleigh Banfield out there for us in Connecticut. I'm just wondering. I'm just talking out loud.

All right. Thank you so much. We appreciate it.

Well, hundreds of motorists stranded on long island road right as the blizzard hit. We'll tell you which mega store turned into an unlikely source of shelter for the group.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FEYERICK: The travel ban in Connecticut was supposed to be lifted just over half an hour ago. But it doesn't mean anyone would actually want to get out.

Take a look at some of these pictures from New Haven. Kat Gloor took these and shared them with us. Oh, boy, a lot of digging on those cars.

She's with us now via Skype.

And, Kat, how much snow fell outside your building?

KAT GLOOR, IREPORTER: I can't give you the exact amount, because the largest measuring stick we had ended at 24 inches, it's well above that, at least 30.

FEYERICK: I'm looking over your shoulder, and the drift looks pretty substantial there.

GLOOR: Yes, we're not going anywhere for a while. We had managed to dig a little bit through the courtyard that you see behind me, but all of the streets outside are still completely blocked.

FEYERICK: You know, the one thing I love when the snow falls like this, and you are sort of stranded inside for the day is when you go out, it's quiet. There's just a quiet. Have you -- did you notice that when you went outdoors?

GLOOR: It was. Well, we didn't venture out until about 1:00 this afternoon. By the time we got to the main street right here, which is really just about 100 feet, everybody was out digging themselves out, kids were playing in the snow. We actually saw some of our local police department digging out one of their cars that had been struck. So it is quieter, but the one thing you hear is the sounds of shovels.

FEYERICK: Right, exactly. Oh, my gosh. You're also going to hear the sounds of some pretty angry motorists when they come to clear those streets and the snow gets pushed right back up on to the cars.

Did you have -- were you able to weather out the storm pretty well?

GLOOR: We were lucky right here in our neighborhood of new haven, we didn't lose power at all. I live in an older building that's weathered quite a few storms over the past 10 years. Sandy had the water coming up close, but we didn't see anything quite like the wind we heard last night.

FEYERICK: All right. And so it sounds like -- at least Rhode Island is going to be back up for business come Monday. Do you feel the same is going to happen in New Haven?

GLOOR: That's certainly my hope. Looking outside right now, it would be hard to imagine. But, you know, this isn't the first time that people in New England have dug out from a storm like this. I just hope I can find my car come Monday morning.

FEYERICK: Do you plan to go to work, assuming you can find your car and dig it out?

GLOOR: That's certainly the plan right now.

FEYERICK: All right. Can you imagine? Hi, I can't come to work today, I don't know where my car is.

OK, Kat Gloor, thank you so much. We really appreciate you sending us the great pictures. And I noticed in one of them, there was that great snowman with the green scarf wrapped around. Nice job. Appreciate your doing that for us.

GLOOR: Thank you so much.

FEYERICK: OK.

And for some motorists stranded along Long Island, New York, Wal- Mart opened its doors and became a refuge. More than two dozen people, along with several employees sought shelter in the store. It initially had closed early, but it ended up staying open, past midnight.

The motorists were stuck on secondary roads after major roadways were shut down. No word on whether anybody got a discount. OK, I just added that part.

Well, anyway, the mountains of snow, the hurricane-force winds, the power outages, it all adds up to comedy gold for some late-night hosts. Here's their take on the blizzard of 2013.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JIMMY FALLON, COMEDIAN: Everybody is talking about this big winter storm that could dump 3 feet of snow on the East Coast, and knock out power to 24 million people. To put things in perspective, that's about six Beyonce halftime shows.

The storm is a big deal. In fact, I heard the Weather Channel is expecting totals of 12 to 20 viewers.

JAY LENO, COMEDIAN: As you know, there is a -- my god, just a huge snowstorm going on back -- hope everybody is doing OK. I know some folks lost power back east. So good luck to them.

I spoke to my buddy in Boston. They already got a ton of snow in Boston. He said Massachusetts is now whiter than a Romney family reunion. That's how much snow.

Hey, but some people love the snow. I tell you, Martha Stewart today, did you see her on the news? She built a snowman whose eyes were natural black onyx and whose nose a caramelized roasted baby carrot, sprinkled with thyme. Beautiful, beautiful snowman.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FEYERICK: But is there something wrong with that nose? I don't know. It sounds OK to me.

Well, two years ago, the lead singer of Alabama Shakes was working at the postal service. Now she's at the Grammys.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FEYERICK: Well, they're getting things ready for the big show tomorrow night. The 55th Annual Grammy Awards. Of course, all the big names will be there, including Gotye, up for a record of the year.

(MUSIC)

FEYERICK: Of course, Gotye is in good company, a year where the theme of the Grammys is new blood.

Here is CNN entertainment correspondent, Nischelle Turner.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(MUSIC)

NISCHELLE TURNER, CNN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT: "We are Young", that could be the theme of the 55th Annual Grammy Awards.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's been an incredible year in music. It feels like alternative music is back.

TURNER: This year, the spotlight isn't on veterans like Springsteen or Dylan. It's about Fun and the Black Keys and Mumford and Sons, and Frank Ocean and Jack White.

(MUSIC)

TURNER: They're all nominated for album of the year and they're all in their 20s or 30s.

(MUSIC)

TURNER: In addition, Mumford and Sons, Dan Auerbach from the Black Keys, Frank Ocean and Fun go into Sunday's ceremony with six nods apiece, matching nominations earned by hip-hop heavyweights Jay-Z and Kanye West.

(MUSIC)

TURNER: In this past year, attention was focused on the breakout stars, most notably Fun, the power pop trio from New York, and Frank Ocean, the New Orleans R&B singer who shot to stardom with this emotional performance on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" where he sang about an unrequited love with another man.

(MUSIC)

TURNER: Both Ocean and Fun are nominated for best new artist along with country multi-instrumentalist Hunter Hayes.

HUNTER HAYES, THREE NOMINATIONS: Here we are my first record, my debut record.

TURNER: Blues rock group Alabama Shakes.

REPORTER: Two years ago, what were you guys doing? Won't you working at the Postal Service?

ALABAMA SHAKES, TWO NOMINATIONS: Yes, I was working. I was delivering postal mail.

TURNER: And folk rock trio, The Lumineers.

THE LUMINEERS, TWO NOMINATIONS: Went from sleeping in friend's houses, and then going six people to a hotel room, to now like Grammy nominations.

(MUSIC)

TURNER: On Sunday, look for Justin Timberlake's first Grammy performance in four years, Rihanna's first solo turn at the Grammy's since the psychical altercation with Chris Brown caused her to cancel in 2009, and collaboration featuring Bruno Mars, Sting and Rihanna.

Nischelle Turner, CNN, Los Angeles.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FEYERICK: And to get you in the groove for the Grammys tonight, 8:00 p.m., a special look at Beyonce, "Finding Her Destiny." Nischelle Turner looks at the performer's career and why she has become such a celebrated artist. Tonight, 8:00 Eastern, right here on CNN.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FEYERICK: Checking today's top stories.

A source close to Jesse Jackson Jr. says the former congressman has signed a plea deal. Federal prosecutors, along with the FBI, were investigating Jackson for possibly financial improprieties, including misusing campaign funds. Officially, the U.S. attorney's office in Washington, D.C. has no comment. Lawyers representing Jackson are not returning calls from CNN.

Jackson resigned from Congress last year after taking an extended medical leave.

Well, fired police officer accused of murder, staying one step ahead of the former comrades pursuing him. The search is back on for Christopher Dorner in the Big Bear Lake area, east of Los Angeles. Authorities are hoping surveillance video might help the search. It allegedly shows Dorner tossing a magazine full of bullets and a military belt into a dumpster outside San Diego. Dorner has described himself as an enemy combatant. The first lady joins mourners at the funeral of a Chicago teen. Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed days after she performed at the presidential inauguration. Her mother says no parent should go through what she is going through now.

And here's a sight millions in the Northeast will not see this weekend -- a mail truck. The postal service says it is suspending mail delivers in seven states because of this weekend's huge blizzard.

Back now to the search for fired LAPD police officer, Christopher Dorner. Our Kyung Lah has obtained footage exclusive video of Dorner. It was taken at a police academy shooting range when he was a cadet and it shows he knows how to handle a weapon well.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Christopher Dorner, LAPD cadet, in 2005.

(on camera): What do you think watching this? Considering what's happened?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, he's an expert with weapons, definitely. He's definitely dangerous.

LAH: This man spent months with Dorner at the LAPD Training Academy. We are altering his voice and not showing his face because he fears Dorner will go after his police friends. But he wants the public to see this, so people understand what the LAPD is facing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You look at Chris, you can see he's a little bit of an expert. The way -- watch, his arms, he'll shoot, you -- almost no movement when he shoots the gun, and then pop, like nothing.

LAH: So, he stood out?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, he stood out. He knew what he was doing. The LAPD has -- they're going to be going after one of their own former, and he knows, like I say, he knows what he's doing. He knows how to use everything.

LAH: Being a cop, do you think that it was -- could you tell that it was important to him?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I think it was very important to him. Yes.

LAH: You could see it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

LAH: Even during the training?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right, yes. I think it's a 300-pound dummy and he does that easily.

LAH: Easily? This is 300 pounds.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. I believe that's 300 pounds.

LAH: So, this is a very strong man?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.

LAH (voice-over): But not everything was easy for Dorner, the aspiring police officer. This man says he witnessed drill instructors picking on him for his weight and slow running.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When I hear about how angry he is about the LAPD, I think that fits to my experience with him. I could kind of, you know -- that matches up when he says things about LAPD, matches up to the way I think he had his experience through the LAPD, especially the academy.

LAH: But this man never spoke to Dorner but he never forgot the cadet.

(on camera): But your thought was, this man represents power and --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, exactly. I wanted to show -- when I was going to use it, I wanted to show, put music, show the LAPD is powerful, look at this powerful man handling this gun.

LAH: Is it frightening to think that the LAPD is now facing this man?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, yes. I mean, this guy is no joke.

LAH (voice-over): And one police are taking very seriously.

Kyung Lah, CNN, Los Angeles.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FEYERICK: I'm Deb Feyerick that will do it for me. Lots more coming up on NEWSROOM, which starts right after a short break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)