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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
New Photos of Castro's Backyard; Latest Developments in Ariel Castro Investigation; First Amendment Violations?
Aired May 13, 2013 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Erin, thanks.
Good evening, everyone. We have breaking news tonight. Outrage at the -- the Obama administration's Justice Department. Today we learned they had secretly collected telephone records of reporters and editors at the Associated Press, two months' worth. The A.P. calls it an unprecedented intrusion.
The question is, what was the government looking for and what about the First Amendment? This on top of the revelation that the IRS has been targeting conservative groups. We'll cover both stories tonight.
Also a gunman opens fire at a Mother's Day parade, wounding 19 people, three of them critically. The shootings caught on tape. The gunman or gunmen still at large. Just ahead, we'll talk to an eyewitness who believes the gunman was standing right next to him during the shooting.
We begin, though, in west Cleveland, where exactly one week ago tonight, a nightmare ended for three missing women. And tonight we have video showing part of that rescue. A cell phone video shows police rushing into the house at 2207 Seymour Avenue just minutes after Amanda Berry was freed by neighbors who heard her screams. Police found two other missing women inside, Michelle Knight and Gina DeJesus.
Now you can see Amanda Berry is in the street, she's there with her 6-year-old daughter, born during Berry's captivity. Ariel Castro, their accused kidnapper, is being held on an $8 million bond. Today, police were back at his house. Now investigators from the Medical Examiner's Office went inside again.
Tonight, Castro's brothers are speaking out in an exclusive interview with CNN. They were arrested last week and then cleared. Tonight, they're in hiding for their own safety. You'll hear from them ahead.
First, though, an exclusive look inside Castro's backyard. For the first time, we are getting a look at what he kept back there, dozens of photographs obtained by 360 showing what he was allegedly trying to hide from the outside world.
Randi Kaye joins me now from Cleveland -- Randi. RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, some of these photos I have to tell you are chilling. They were taken over the weekend by a neighbor who asked not to be identified. In all, we have seen more than 70 photos. And I want to show you some of the most interesting ones tonight.
First take a look at this one. It's a wide shot of the backyard. And as you can see, it was a mess back there. It really looked like a junkyard. There's a child's little car there on the right side, you might be able to see and on the left side, of course, you see the kids' basketball net on the left side. And also that's the garage in the distance.
The next photo, take a look at this, when I say chilling, barbed wire. This is so telling. There were spools and spools of barbed wire all over the yard, Anderson. Thick rolls of it like you see here in the photo. Now of course we don't know for sure but this may have been used to keep his captives inside in case they made a run for it, perhaps, and very likely to keep anyone on the outside from trying to get in. That stuff as you can see would do some real damage to anyone who came in contact with it.
Also, something else chilling, Anderson. We saw chains. Now here you take a look at it, there's a chain, it's around a tree. Now Castro did have puppies but our guy, the photographer, says that hundreds of chains were found in the yard, not just a few, and we're talking really thick, heavy chains, hundreds of them.
Now remember, the police report said that he had kept the girls chained up in the basement originally, then he chained them up elsewhere in the house. Now, also, you can see in the photo that there's a pulley in the grass there, laying in the grass, so he had some type of pulley system as well but it's really unclear, Anderson, as to why.
COOPER: Now we know there was the 6-year-old girl living there, Amanda Berry's child which we now know is also Ariel Castro's child. Is there any evidence of the little girl there?
KAYE: It seems so. If you take a look at this next photo, there's a couple of red bikes that were laying up against the garage. Now clearly these bikes are for children. Castro had grandkids as we know, so these bikes may belong to them. But look at this other bike, OK, this really caught our attention. It's a pink bike, a Barbie bicycle. You can see that the Barbie logo is on it.
We can only speculate that this was there for Amanda Berry's daughter to use. We don't know for sure of course but certainly this is a picture of innocence there in the backyard behind what can only be called a house of horror.
It's just so creepy, and again, something else, speaking of creepy, Anderson, look at this photo that we also got. It's a mirror. Look closely there. It's a mirror hanging up at Castro's back door which is now boarded up as you can see by police, but this is critical because it allowed him to stand at his back door and see whoever was coming up his driveway even though the driveway was completely out of view.
So he used this possibly to prevent any surprise visitors. In fact, one neighbor told the guy who took this photo that when he'd go visit Castro at his home before he could even get halfway up the driveway, Castro would be bounding out of his front doors if he was expecting him, and now we know why.
One more photo I want to show you. I want to show you this is the back of the house. We got some photos of this, a few different angles. This photo shows how far he went to shield himself apparently and his victims from the others. You can see the gray wood in the windows. The guy who took these says that Castro removed his windows and we saw, in fact, a bunch of photos of those windows, the glass windows, scattered in the yard but he replaced them with this wood paneling that was all over the house.
This is a shot from the backyard area. Nobody of course could see what or who was in that house. And finally, last photo we're going to show you tonight, take a look at this. OK, now, that's the garage in the distance, but to the left you can see the blue tarp. Apparently Ariel Castro had tarped over the whole backyard. He used blue, green, gray tarp according to our photographer.
There was tons of piping in the yard and rolls of tarp on the ground. Certainly wasn't in short supply. He may have been planning to tarp over more areas, according to the photographer. He apparently wanted to make sure that nobody could see what was going on in the yard or anywhere else -- Anderson.
COOPER: Did this guy say why, why he took the pictures?
KAYE: Well, he said that he wants people to know what's there. He wants people to know what was going on there. He said it's horrible, he lives in the neighborhood as I mentioned. He cannot believe that this all happened in his neighborhood, and that nobody knew it. He simply doesn't want it to happen again.
COOPER: All right. Fascinating to see that. Randi, appreciate it. Thanks.
We're still learning a lot about what happened at 2207 Seymour Avenue. It's understandably, as you just heard, stunned neighbors, it's rocked the community.
And joining me now is Cleveland Councilman Brian Cummins.
Councilman, it's good to have you on again. You were actually given access to Castro's backyard. What struck you about it?
BRIAN CUMMINS, CLEVELAND CITY COUNCIL, CLEVELAND CITY COUNCIL: Well, you know, Anderson, I went through the backyard really working to confirm what was going on with the fencing that they basically put up for the perimeter to protect the property for -- you know, for evidence. So to be honest, I noticed debris probably similar to what was in the pictures, obviously, but I frankly didn't really focus on that. My focus was to just inspect and see what was doing -- going on relative to the fencing. So I'm sorry, I don't really have much to comment about it other than to say that if these were taken after the women were saved, that it's quite possible that what you're seeing in those photos is material that was taken out of the house.
CUMMINS: And you know, frankly, it's a little disturbing, it's frankly why the fence is up to protect that evidence. And that's all -- that's all the comment I really can have.
COOPER: What is the latest that you've heard on the investigation? Because we've talked to you over the last week or so, and you've had a lot of insights about the investigation. Are you pleased with the way it's going?
CUMMINS: I think so. I think, you know, I think in some ways, we had a lot of speculation in midweek and, you know, obviously the police report with the -- with the charges made, that police report is public record. I know the mayor asked for a cease and desist and we understand why. We want to try to give the survivors their privacy. But I think, you know, like this gentleman that took the pictures, it was probably wrong for him to do that.
I can sympathize in people wanting to know what occurred, but I do -- all I know today is really just doing my job in the street, dealing with neighbors, et cetera. I do know that the prosecutors were there today and some other agencies, so I think what you're seeing is, you know, a perimeter fence and then agencies still gaining access relative to questions pertaining to the case itself. And that's pretty much what I've heard today.
COOPER: You're spearheading a fundraising effort for the four victims in this case. Tell us more about this because this is important.
CUMMINS: Well, the primary importance is that on Sunday, we -- the world received news from legal representatives of the survivors, and we were thrilled because at the end of that news conference, they mentioned the Cleveland Courage Fund that we created on Wednesday, just two days after they were freed. They've thanked us for that and they've pointed out that they -- that they've encouraged people to give to the Cleveland Courage Fund.
And we are in communications with the attorneys that represent the survivors and we'll have more news shortly, in the next few days, but so we're very pleased that we're in communication with the attorneys. The women's safety, mental, physical well-being, we know, as the mayor called for to stop the speculation, and we are having the utmost respect for their -- for their privacy in what they're doing.
So we are only working with their legal representatives. They know we're all working on behalf of those survivors. We're really here to serve them in the fund that we establish and we're looking forward to figuring out with their attorneys and their legal representatives the utilization of those funds.
COOPER: Right. And we're going to have the information linked on our Web site as well.
Councilman, appreciate your time tonight.
As you know, Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus were allegedly held prisoner all these years, just three miles from where they're abducted. Their rescues had led to a lot of new questions about their kidnapping investigations. Did authorities drop the ball? That's what a lot of people want to know because we want to know how to prevent this from happening in the future.
Joining me is Michael Polensek, who's also a member of the Cleveland City Council.
Councilman, you feel like Michelle Knight fell through the cracks more so than Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus. And that's certainly the case in terms of media attention and her family's attention. She was actually taken off the list by the FBI as a missing person, then put back on it, then taken off.
How do we stop that from happening again?
MICHAEL POLENSEK, CLEVELAND CITY COUNCIL: Well, that's the question is, how do you get on the radar screen and then how do you get off of it. As of yesterday, there were 102 individuals still reported as missing in the city. And that's why as we look forward and go in a positive direction, how do we get an audit, how do we determine what the status is of the 102, a more detailed report, a more detailed analysis, but also, to get information out, to disseminate information to the public.
I'm confident that the Cleveland Police Department did everything they could do in the investigation of the three individuals. In Michelle -- in the Michelle case, clearly there was a question why the police recommended it come off in 2003 and that's something obviously we're going to be asking and we need the chairman of the Public Safety Committee, Kevin Conwell will be asking for those questions when they come to the table.
But we have to look at the bigger picture and as we go forward there's 102 out there. We need to get a status report, we need to know the circumstances, why --
COOPER: You want an audit of all the missing cases -- you want an audit of all the current missing persons cases that's in Cleveland.
POLENSEK: That's right. That's exactly, we need to understand. Because there are some people that some members of council had assumed, had come back home and only to find out after the "Plain Dealer" did a front page article yesterday that those individuals are still missing. That's not the fault of the -- of the police department because individual council people were working with them but when you look at the big picture, the citizenry needs to understand who's still missing and what we can do to better educate all of us as to the circumstances and then as we go forward, work to try to identify anyone that we can.
Clearly, I'm hoping, as a result of what transpired here, that some very positive steps are going to be taken to put more emphasis on the people who are missing.
COOPER: And we know that if somebody is over the age of 21, if they're an adult, all too often they are treated very differently than a missing child because they are adult and maybe don't get the same level of attention and that certainly seems to be what happened with Michelle Knight.
POLENSEK: You're absolutely correct. I mean, she was on the radar screen, then after 2003, she was off of it, and it's like she fell off the face of the earth. And clearly, there might be other people in a similar circumstances and that's why we need to have an audit, we need to work with the safety director, the chief of police, the administration.
I'm confident that the Jackson administration has done everything possible to pursue people who are missing. But we've got to look at the big picture.
POLENSEK: Come up with a better plan, a better way to disseminate the information, and in the long run we're all going to be better off. Just not here in Cleveland but across the country.
COOPER: Councilman, appreciate you joining us tonight. Thank you very much.
We're going to have more from Cleveland later on in the broadcast. CNN's exclusive interview with Ariel Castro's brothers who are in hiding tonight they say for their own safety.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What is your brother to you now?
ONIL CASTRO, ARIEL CASTRO'S BROTHER: Monster, hateful. I hope he rots in that jail. I don't even want them to take his life like that. I want him to suffer in that jail. To the last extent. I don't care if they even feed him, what he has done to my life and my family's.
PEDRO CASTRO, ARIEL CASTRO'S BROTHER: I feel the same way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Martin Savidge is going to join us with his exclusive interview later this hour. Let you know what you think. There's a lot ahead. You can follow me on Twitter @andersoncooper. I'll be tweeting throughout the hour.
Next up, our breaking news. The Associated Press reporting the Justice Department secretly collected the phone records of a lot of reporters and editors. The A.P. just going public with what it calls a massive and unprecedented intrusion.
We're going to take a look at what could be behind this.
We'll also take a closer look, also ahead, the verdict in the trial of a Philadelphia abortion doctor accused of first-degree murder.
COOPER: Our breaking news tonight, the Associated Press says the Department of Justice secretly collected two months of phone records of several of its reporters and editors. It says the records included calls from several A.P. bureaus and even personal lines of several staffers.
In a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, the A.P.'s president calls the subpoenas a massive and unprecedented intrusion into his reporting. The question is what's the government looking for and can they do this? Did this violate the First Amendment right to freedom of the press?
Want to bring in our chief congressional correspondent Dana Bash, also our senior legal analyst, Jeffrey Toobin. There's this, and also, the IRS targeting of conservative groups that we want to talk about.
Dana -- Dana, this is extraordinary action by the government. Let's talk about the Department of Justice first. Members of Congress already weighing in. What's their reaction been?
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, just a few minutes ago, the House speaker released a really blistering statement saying the First Amendment is first for a reason, that the Obama administration is going after reporters' phone records, they better have a damned good explanation. It doesn't get more terse than that.
As you can see, Republicans are unhappy, Democrats are not happy as well from the most liberal to the most conservative. Now what the president of the Associated Press is saying that over a two-month period, 20 phone lines in New York, Connecticut, Washington, even the press room here in the capital, in the House of Representatives, they seized records from all of those areas and it was done without telling the A.P. journalists beforehand. Apparently some had their home phones and cell phone records taken, seized by the Justice Department.
Now what the A.P.'s president is saying is that what they took provides what he called a roadmap to the A.P.'s news gathering operations, a roadmap and information that the government simply has absolutely no business having.
Now you might of course be wondering well, what's the Justice Department's explanation. All they are saying is that they only did this because they exhausted every reasonable effort to obtain this information through alternative means.
As for the White House just a few minutes ago, they, too, issued a statement saying that they don't know anything about this, that this is being done independently at the Department of Justice and it's an ongoing criminal investigation. But, you know, back to sort of a reaction here on Capitol Hill, the Democratic Judiciary chairman, Anderson, Patrick Leahy says that in this kind of case, it is the burden of the Justice Department to prove that they really need to take this extreme measure with the press, and he said that he -- on the face of it, he's concerned that the government may not have met that burden and over in the House, as you heard from the speaker and others, they're adding this to a long list of investigations.
COOPER: Yes. And, Jeff, I mean, is there -- aren't there very strict rules on how they're supposed to do this? Like first of all, Eric Holder, the head of the Justice Department, has to know about it and approve it. Do we know if that happened? And also, don't they have to be very limited in what they're going for? It seems like a pretty broad seizing of records.
JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Well, let's just put this in perspective for starters. This administration has been incredibly aggressive in pursuing leaks in general. They have criminally prosecuted --
COOPER: More than all other administrations combined.
TOOBIN: More than other administrations combined. Now a lot of people think the First Amendment protects journalists from having to disclose these sorts of information. Not true. Especially under federal law. There is no privilege to protect this kind of information. However, administrations throughout the past decade since the Nixon administration have exercised restraint. They have said, look, we will do whatever we can to avoid having to subpoena journalists.
I have never heard of a subpoena this broad. It's legal as far as I can tell. The administration is not violating the First Amendment. But they are certainly doing more than has ever been done before in pursuing the private information of journalists and we'll see if there's any political check on them, because there doesn't appear to be any legal check on what they're doing.
COOPER: Is it -- Jeff, I mean, does it pass the smell test that the Obama White House itself would not be informed about this just from a potential P.R. standpoint?
TOOBIN: It certainly actually does pass the smell test that the White House would not be involved. Attorney General Holder had to know. There is no question that a decision like this goes all the way to the attorney general. Now just to put this in a little perspective, the A.P. has suggested that this is part of an investigation of a leak regarding a possible terrorist attack in Yemen and the administration will surely say, look, you know, it's all well and good that journalists want to protect their -- want to protect their sources, but this is a matter of life and death.
If this stuff gets leaked, people will die, so we are willing to take that extreme step. I think that's the kind of balance you're going to see on this story.
COOPER: Well, we'll see what the Department of Justice says about it.
Now, Dana, the other controversy that's huge in Washington is this news that the IRS intentionally red flagged conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status. They would look for key words like Tea Party or patriot to actually target applications which were then delayed or returned.
I mean, the House Ways and Means Committee, I know they're going to hold a -- they're going to hold hearings on this on Friday. Today, President Obama weighed in. And I want to play for our viewers what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If in fact IRS personnel engaged in the kind of practices that have been reported on and were intentionally targeting conservative groups, then that's outrageous and there's no place for it. And they have to be held fully accountable because the IRS as an independent agency requires absolute integrity and people have to have confidence that they're applying in a nonpartisan way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Is it known then at this point who came up with this ludicrous idea for the IRS to actually go after groups based on their politics?
BASH: Who came up with it, no, not yet but we probably will find out more about that later this week when the IRS actually unveils its inspector general report but look, the IRS has two big problems here. Number one of course is just the concept of targeting groups when they're looking into the tax-exempt status, or any status, frankly, based on their political beliefs.
That is simply a no-no and it's something that the -- that the IRS has admitted to. They deny that it was for political reasons but they admit that it was inappropriate to do. But the second big problem that the IRS has is Congress itself. Now Congress feels duped and misled because Congress has been looking into this for a couple of years since -- 2010, when they first actually started this at the IRS and repeatedly were not told that this was actually going on, even when we now know that a senior IRS official actually was informed almost two years ago, Anderson, and denied and declined to tell the House of Representatives what she knew.
COOPER: So a senior IRS official knew about this two years ago. Meanwhile, the IRS is testifying that there's no way they're -- they're doing exactly what a -- what a senior official knew they were doing.
BASH: What the senior official says is that they were trying to get information on Tea Party groups because the law is that these groups should not get tax-exempt status if they are primarily -- they exist for political reasons. So that is something that they were actually encouraged to do by some members of Congress, especially Democrat, not just Tea Party but other groups.
What they are denying is that they were actually doing this for political reasons, going after them because they are Tea Party groups. But it is very, very hard for them to explain this.
COOPER: Yes. Jeff Toobin, what do you think?
TOOBIN: Well, I think we need to take a deep breath on this one. You know, the idea that -- I mean, everybody is throwing around a lot of accusations here. There are a lot of career people in the IRS who I think try to do a good job and this is about politics. The decision that the IRS had to make was, were these groups primarily political, attempting to elect candidates, or were they educational?
You have to look at politics to answer that question. So I think it's important to reserve judgment. This is all based on a report that has not even been made public yet. So let's take a deep breath and see what -- what the facts are and then we can be totally outraged.
COOPER: But if -- I mean, if they weren't -- if the only group they're looking at are groups that -- with the words Tea Party or patriot and not, you know, progressive or liberal, I mean that certainly would raise a lot of questions.
TOOBIN: It would, but you would need to know how many -- were there any groups there with progressive or liberal in their titles? Were they all Tea Party groups. I mean, I just think the facts matter here and it's important to know what they are before we, you know, condemn people.
COOPER: Well, we'll have hearings this week, we'll see. Jeff Toobin, Dana Bash, thanks.
Up next, an abortion doctor found guilty of murder, killing babies that were born alive.
COOPER: In "Crime and Punishment," abortion doctor, Kermit Gosnell, is now facing the possibility of the death penalty. Today, jurors in Pennsylvania convicted him on three counts of first degree murder and one count of involuntary manslaughter. The case grabbed national attention as the trial exposed horrifying details of Gosnell and his staff performing banned late term abortions and killing babies who were born alive.
Legal analyst Sunny Hostin was in court today. She joins us now from Philadelphia. This was a nearly clean sweep for the prosecution, wasn't it?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Absolutely. I mean, he was certainly charged with 19 charges, 263 counts, found guilty of 17 charges and 242 counts. So there's no question about the fact that this was a big win for the government.
I will tell you, Anderson, you know I was a federal prosecutor, I have tried cases. I have covered cases. The prosecutor when this verdict came back hugged one of her investigators and was sobbing. So this was an emotional case for the government and they certainly felt like justice was done today.
COOPER: How did Gosnell respond?
HOSTIN: You know, it was interesting, Anderson. I was towards the back of the courtroom and I saw absolutely no response from him when the jury went through its very lengthy verdict. But I stay back awhile and I walked up to the well of the courtroom and I had the opportunity to just face him, face-to-face.
And he let out a big sigh and also just started shaking his head. It seemed to me that at that very moment, when the verdict had come down, he was shell-shocked. He seemed surprised. He seemed upset. The gravity of what happened seemed to hit him at that very moment.
COOPER: The defense called no witnesses during the trial. Do you think that was a mistake, or was the evidence just kind of so overwhelming?
HOSTIN: You know, I hate to second-guess this defense. The Defense Attorney Jack McMahon is legendary here in Philadelphia. He certainly cross examined the witnesses very vigorously. He gave what many consider to be a game-changing closing argument, but I think in a death penalty case, certainly jurors want to hear from someone, whether it be the defendant himself or herself or perhaps an expert. I think they want to hear the defense give some sort of explanation, some sort of story, and they didn't get that.
COOPER: They had already heard from a lot of people who actually worked for this doctor who had already admitted to crimes. So what are the range of options now available? The sentencing phase starts next Tuesday.
HOSTIN: That's right. It starts next Tuesday. This is really the death penalty phase, Anderson, and so they're going to hear aggravating factors and mitigating factors and they will decide whether or not they believe Dr. Gosnell should get the death penalty or whether or not his life should be spared.
It's very clear, though, from the counts and all the charges that even if he doesn't get the death penalty he's 72 years old. He will spend the rest of his life in prison. But really, it's a question of life or death for this doctor, which starts next Tuesday.
COOPER: All right, Sunny, thanks. Let's get caught up on some of the other stories we're following tonight. Isha Sesay joins us with the "360 Bulletin" -- Isha.
ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, we begin with a "360" follow from Valley Springs, California. That's where a 12-year-old boy is accused of stabbing to death his 8-year-old sister last month. He originally told police he saw an intruder leave the home. Before her death, the boy was suspended for five days for bringing a pocket knife to his middle school.
O.J. Simpson was back in court today seeking a new trial on his Las Vegas armed robbery conviction. Simpson is serving 33 years for the 2007 crime. He claims he was only trying to get back his own sports memorabilia and got bad legal advice on how to do it.
In Northern Minnesota, a sheet of ice acting like a tsunami comes ashore and damages homes. Strong winds pushed the ice forward, blowing out some windows and knocking in doors. Incredible pictures, like something out of a sci-fi movie.
COOPER: Weird, never seen that before. Isha, thanks very much.
Police in New Orleans are looking for three possible gunmen in yesterday's attack in a Mother's Day parade that left 19 people injured. I will speak next with the man who was at the parade and thinks he was standing right next to one of the gunmen. I will speak with the New Orleans police superintendent.
Also ahead tonight, CNN's exclusive interview with kidnapping suspect Ariel Castro's two brothers, who say he's a monster, who should rot in jail, and that they had no idea what was allegedly going on in his house for all those years.
COOPER: Welcome back. Authorities in New Orleans are offering a $10,000 reward for information on the gunman or gunmen who opened fire during a Mother's Day parade yesterday. Nineteen people were injured. At least three of those people are in critical condition. You see it on the surveillance camera.
Surveillance video showing one of the potential suspects, he's on the far left with a circle around him, the photographer believes he was standing right next to one of the shooters when the gunfire broke out. You see him raising his hand here and the crowd running away, obviously the shots starting to be fired.
Abdul Aziz joins me on the phone. So you were at the parade when the shooting occurred. Describe to us what you saw.
ABDUL AZIZ, PHOTOJOURNALIST (via telephone): That is correct, Anderson. We had just turned off of the main thoroughfare on to Frenchman Street and we approached the corner of Frenchman and North Villory. At that time, a number of gunshots rang out and of course, there was a considerable amount of chaos and the people began to flee the area.
I personally saw the muzzle flash from the gun and began to run towards the direction of a few of my friends that I saw. I also saw a number of individuals fall to the ground and immediately start to grab their wounds and call for help.
COOPER: You say you saw the muzzle flash of the gun. How far were you from that?
AZIZ: I was about three to five feet away from the shooter. After reviewing the surveillance video that came out, that was released by the New Orleans Police Department today, I could identify myself in that surveillance video and sure enough, I was about three to five feet away.
COOPER: And did you see the face of the shooter?
AZIZ: I didn't have an opportunity to see the face of the shooter, unfortunately. As you can imagine, in a situation like that, it's just mass chaos and everyone is trying to get to a safe place. After the shooting stopped, I immediately grabbed my camera and began to start documenting the shooting.
COOPER: And I know you don't want to show your face tonight for fear of reprisal. What or who is it you are afraid of?
AZIZ: It's not that I'm afraid of anyone. New Orleans, unfortunately, has a culture of retaliation, which has somewhat plagued our city. However, I think it's important to note that New Orleans residents are resilient and this is something we will bounce back from.
We won't allow for crime to make us change our culture or not enjoy and celebrate our culture, which is what second line tradition is all about in New Orleans, the celebration of life and family. So we're looking forward to next Sunday and continuing the tradition of second line here in New Orleans without any fear and rallying around our community to figure out ways to address these systemic issues that are plaguing our city.
We want to look at our educational systems, the social services, as well as our public safety practices to make sure that we can as a community really bounce back from this in a positive way and create a better future for all of our citizens in New Orleans.
COOPER: Well, I appreciate you being on tonight. Thank you very much.
Joining me now live from New Orleans is Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas. Superintendent, thanks very much for being with us. What can you say about the status of the investigation?
SUPT. RONAL SERPAS, NEW ORLEANS POLICE: Anderson, we've made a tremendous amount of headway just in the last 25 to 28 hours, and I would expect in the next hour or so that we'll be able to announce a very important break in the case and give our community some peace of mind when we make this announcement.
COOPER: And you basically spoke to the perpetrator or perpetrators of the crime today in the news conference that you gave, saying quote, "We know a lot more about you than you think." So are you saying you actually know who they are, or the person is?
SERPAS: We are incredibly close to making an arrest in this case, and the men and women of our fifth police district, I think you're probably very familiar with that part of our community, they have worked nonstop for these last 24 hours with a lot of assistance and we feel very sure we know who the perpetrator is and we are very positive if he's watching CNN right now he should consider turning himself in.
COOPER: So earlier on, there had been reports of possibly three suspects. At this point are you saying you believe there's just one suspect?
SERPAS: At this time, we're not able to rule out that there was more than one. We did have some witness statements that made a lot of sense to us that there may have been more than one. But when the entire investigation's done we'll have a clearer picture. Right now, we're very focused on one individual.
COOPER: You know, I've spent a lot of time with the police in New Orleans over the years. One recurrent problem as it is in many cities is people not wanting to come forward and talk about what they've actually witnessed. Was that a problem on this? Did you have people coming forward?
SERPAS: Actually we had a lot of assistance and one of the things that is unique about New Orleans is 9 out of 10 people in New Orleans understand crime stoppers and will call crime stoppers. Last year, we had a 25 percent increase in tips to crime stoppers, the year before an 11 percent increase. In other words, the people of New Orleans are reaching out and having more confidence in their police department, no question in my mind about it.
COOPER: That's great that it's gone up because it's certainly a problem in a lot of other places. Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas, I look forward to talking to you again. I hope you get this person.
Just ahead, a CNN exclusive, Ariel Castro's brothers are speaking out about his alleged crimes and saying they had no idea anything was wrong and would have turned him in if they had known.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ONIL CASTRO, ARIEL CASTRO'S BROTHER: I would never think of doing anything like that. If I knew that my brother was doing this, I would not be -- I would not -- in a minute I would call the cops.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COOPER: Another CNN exclusive, tonight, Ariel Castro's brothers, Pedro and Onil Castro are speaking out calling him a monster, saying I hope he rots in that jail. Both men were arrested last Monday along with their brother. Their mug shots were shown repeatedly on television and newspapers.
Days later, they were cleared by police. Authorities say the brothers had no connection to the crimes Ariel Castro is accused of committing. That hasn't stopped the death threats. A lot of people find it hard to believe the Castro's own family never suspected anything was wrong over all those years.
Tonight, Pedro and Onil Castro are hiding in an undisclosed location. Here's their exclusive interview with CNN's Martin Savidge.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Did you, in any way, know, help, and assists your brother in the horrible things he's accused of doing?
ONIL CASTRO: Absolutely not. No idea that this horrific crime was going on.
PEDRO CASTRO, ARIEL CASTRO'S BROTHER: No.
SAVIDGE: You know there are people who will say you had to know. How is it possible for so long in that home, your brother, you couldn't know?
PEDRO CASTRO: For those people out there, I'll tell you something. I had nothing to do with this and I don't know how my brother got away with it for so many years, because that would never cross my mind.
SAVIDGE: He fooled you.
PEDRO CASTRO: He fooled me. Because I used to go there more than he did, to work on cars, clean the yard, help him out and stuff. But never go beyond the kitchen.
ONIL CASTRO: There was nothing, absolutely nothing I could see that was unusual in that backyard. I can't say in the house because I haven't been in the house in years.
SAVIDGE: Do you worry now that people will always suspect that you actually did have a role?
PEDRO CASTRO: Absolutely.
ONIL CASTRO: Yes. And the people out there that know me, they know that Onil Castro is not that person, has nothing to do with that. PEDRO CASTRO: I couldn't never think of doing anything like that. If I knew that my brother was doing this, I would not be -- I would not -- in a minute I would call the cops because that isn't right. But yes, it's going to haunt me because people are going to think Pedro got something to do with this, and Pedro don't have nothing to do with this. If I knew, I would have reported it. Brother or no brother.
SAVIDGE: What is your brother to you now?
ONIL CASTRO: Monster, hateful. I hope he rots in that jail. I don't even want them to take his life like that. I want him to suffer in that jail until the last extent. I don't care if they even feed him. What he has done to my life and my family's.
PEDRO CASTRO: I feel the same way.
SAVIDGE: To the both of you now, he no longer exists?
ONIL CASTRO: Right.
PEDRO CASTRO: Yes.
SAVIDGE: He is gone.
PEDRO CASTRO: He's gone.
SAVIDGE: Almost as if he were dead.
ONIL CASTRO: The monster's a goner. I'm glad that he left the door unlocked or whatever he did, whether he did it on purpose, maybe he wanted to get caught. Maybe time was up. Maybe he was inside too much, he wanted to get caught. But if he did it that way, he shouldn't have went to ma's house and picked me up and put me in a car if he knew that was going to happen.
SAVIDGE: If you could talk to Gina, if you could talk to Michelle, if you could talk to Amanda, and in a way you are, I guess, what would you say?
PEDRO CASTRO: I would tell her -- I would tell them that I'm sorry that you had to go through this, that I was thinking about these girls being -- missing and I'm just grateful that they're home and you know, out of that horrible house and I just tell them that I'm sorry for what Ariel done.
COOPER: Martin Savidge joins me now live from Cleveland. Martin, what did you think of them?
SAVIDGE: You know, it was a fascinating interview, Anderson, and I was surprised they did it, actually, but yet, you could tell that they really -- they were stressed. They were full of emotion, but most of all, they wanted to make sure that the family of those girls knew that they were so grateful, so very grateful they were out, and to let the rest of the world know that they had nothing to do with them being kidnapped. Their pictures of course have been plastered everywhere, their name associated with their brother, and they feel that the world had to know.
COOPER: It's interesting how, I mean, vehement they were against their brother now.
SAVIDGE: They are and that's, of course, part of what adds to the emotions of this story is that there is that horrible revelation of what went on in a house that they know, and then to top it off, it is, of course, a person they know, and not just someone they know, but it's family. And that adds a level of just absolute shock and horror that I think they are still trying to come to grips with.
COOPER: You know, I talked to another family member who also was not allowed past the kitchen, so I mean, again, it's just a weird thing that he wouldn't let these people past the kitchen, no one seemed to think that was odd. Martin, fascinating interview, thank you very much. We'll have much more of martin's exclusive interview coming up in our 10:00 hour. We'll be right back.
COOPER: Time now for the "Ridiculist." Tonight, we are delving into the enigma wrapped in a mystery wrapped in a Big Mac wrapper named Charles Ramsey. He got a lot of attention, deservedly so. I learned last week the man has a flair for language and is incredibly expressive, no doubt about it.
My interview with him probably marked the most times I was called bro on any given afternoon. Here are a couple of my highlights.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHARLES RAMSEY: I'm going to tell it all. I jumped on my bike, went to McDonald's. Here I come with my -- you know, half-eaten Big Mac. Bro, that man, listen, bro. This is Cleveland. Up until yesterday, the only thing that kept me from losing sleep was the lack of money. See what I'm saying?
COOPER: You felt that.
RAMSEY: Bro, this would be a different interview, I told you that.
COOPER: I'm glad it turned out this way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I really like Charles Ramsey. Charles Ramsey interviews of course have gone viral online complete with the requisite auto tune music videos. People are just going nuts for the guy. One man in Cleveland has taken Ramsey-mania to a whole new level and got his face tattooed on the back of his leg.
Last week, Rodney Rose, the tattoo artist at Cleveland's 252 Tattoo posted on Facebook that if someone was willing to get a Ramsey tattoo, he would do it for free.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's kind of like that public figure in Cleveland right now, kind of the voice and the face of it, and he's such an expressive guy, I figured it would make a great tattoo.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Sure enough, Rodney's friend and fellow tattoo artist Steven took him up on the offer. He says he didn't initially want to do it but was willing to do it and voila, about five hours of tattooing later, the work of art was complete. Steven says all joking aside it's a pretty meaningful tattoo.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are a lot of ridiculous things that could end up being tattooed on my leg and there is a back story with this and having the willingness to have Rodney tattoo it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well said, bro. I know some people would say this is a bad idea but it's not like he got Mitt Romney's campaign logo tattooed on his face or anything. Remember that guy? He said he would try to get that removed. Wonder if that ever happened.
The point is one should choose one's tattoos carefully but hats off to the guy in Cleveland who has a leg up on the rest of us. While Charles Ramsey is forever in our hearts, he has him forever proudly on display unless of course he wears long pants.
That's it for us. We'll see you again one hour from now, another edition of "360" at 10:00 p.m. Eastern. Thanks for watching. "PIERS MORGAN LIVE" starts now.