Return to Transcripts main page
O.J. Simpson Speaks Up After Years Of Silence; Aggravation Phase For Jodi Arias Underway; Twelve-Year-Old Faces Second Degree Murder Charge In California; "Huge Fallout Unfolding Over Boston Fire Chief's Response After Marathon Bombings; Google Stock Price Surpasses $900 Per Share For First Time
Aired May 15, 2013 - 15:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Ashleigh Banfield reporting live in Phoenix, Arizona, at the case involving Jodi Arias. We are in the penalty phase.
But I want to take you to Clark County, Las Vegas, in fact. At the courthouse there, O.J. Simpson has made his appearance.
This was the scene this morning in prison blues, with shackles as O.J. Simpson came to his defense table, and the marshals led him in and actually unlocked his right hand so that he had more freedom of movement, but those leg shackles remained as he walked to the front of the courtroom and took his place on the witness stand, swearing under oath to tell the truth and testify in his own appeal to get the judge in this case to throw out the result of his old trial, saying he did not have the right kind of defense, throwing his lawyer under the bus, better known in legal circles as the "Hail Mary" pass.
I'm also watching what is going on in Phoenix, Arizona, but I want to talk about the significance of O.J. Simpson speaking after so many years of silence, and joining me live from New York right now is former Los Angeles county prosecutor, Loni Coombs.
Loni, you know a thing or two about O.J., given the fact that you are an L.A. girl. Look, I was as surprised as many to hear this was coming, that he was going to take the stand, perhaps you not so surprised. But nonetheless, isn't it critical that O.J. had no choice but to break his silence and talk and tell it to the judge, because effectively there is not many other people listening?
LONI COOMBS, FORMER L.A. COUNTY PROSECUTOR: Well, that's right. I mean, he wants to put on this defense that there was ineffective counsel and also this conflict of interest.
And he is the one who is best to testify about this. So after all of these years, he's breaking his silence.
Unfortunately, it has nothing to do with the murders that everyone would love to hear about. It has to do with how his attorney treated him and handled the case there in Las Vegas. BANFIELD: I had a feeling you were going to say that.
And, truly, will there be nothing about the murders of the two victims that he underwent nine months of trial testimony, Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman? Will there be nothing that comes into this proceeding because it did come into the Vegas proceeding in '08?
COOMBS: Yeah, remember this is not a retrial of the case itself. It is simply going to the issues that he's raising, does he deserve a new trial?
And it is based on two questions, did he have ineffectiveness of counsel, and was there a conflict of interest?
And I'll tell you, ineffectiveness of counsel is a very difficult hurdle to climb. I mean, there has been attorneys who have slept through a trial and the courts have still found that they were effective counsel.
But this conflict of interest --
COOMBS: -- in this case -- yeah, there is actually an interesting issue in this case with the conflict of interest because of this relationship that Yale Galanter had with O.J. Simpson, and he's making some interesting allegations about the way Yale handled the case, their relationship before the incident, what kind of advice Yale Galanter gave him about the incident, and there's some other attorneys that are corroborating some of the things that O.J. Simpson is saying.
So there is actually something to be said for this conflict of interest issue. It's not just the "Hail Mary" that everyone is saying.
BANFIELD: I believe that's the technical term that is used in courtrooms across this country, evidence, and evidence is key.
Loni Coombs, I'm just going to break for a moment there with you. Thank you for that. I appreciate it.
And we're continuing to watch what is going on in the Clark County courthouse in Las Vegas. They're on a brief break. O.J. Simpson may be getting lunch. Who knows? It's about that time anyway.
And I want to bring you back here. We're on the same time zone here in Phoenix, Arizona, where Jodi Arias' jurors actually got the case for a few minutes, it seemed, before breaking for lunch.
Beth Karas, our HLN correspondent, has been not only watching this case from the beginning, but she was in the courtroom, just, Beth, as the prosecutor in this case wrapped up what I can only imagine were very passionate arguments as to why the victim, Jodi Arias' murder victim, died in a painful and cruel way. BETH KARAS, HLN LEGAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and the jury has to find that two elements were proven beyond a reasonable doubt, that Travis Alexander suffered physical or mental pain, distress, or anguish. That's number one.
And that Jodi Arias should have known or did know that she was causing him this pain.
So a lot of people think this is going to be pretty quick.
BANFIELD: Sounds like a no brainer to the average person out there.
KARAS: Correct. The only reason we're sitting out here and I had time to come out here and talk to you is because -- I was going to stay upstairs -- is because the judge decided that she will take her lunch break. It is the lunch hour here.
She will be available in about a little under an hour to take the verdict if they reach it.
Now I did see two jurors in the hall escorted by a deputy. They're always escorted since they're deliberating jurors.
We heard a couple of them may want to take lunch. So perhaps they're not deliberating in this next hour, but they might be.
BANFIELD: I'm always amazed when I hear the smoke breaks, but it is frequent. This is something jurors do a lot. This is -- look, they're under a lot of stress, and this is something that many need as relaxation. They need a mental break from the -- these are horrible things they were hearing this morning.
KARAS: Oh, and there were some real graphic photos. Most of them were -- well --
BANFIELD: Was anything new?
KARAS: Yeah, I don't think I saw the two close-ups of the stab wounds to the neck on the right and left side, but we had seen the wounds, the slices to his head, and we learned today there are little divots, triangular divots in his skull from the impact of the knife.
The knife -- the nine wounds to his back, all in a cluster, we had seen. The slash across his throat, close up, gaping, you can see into his throat. We had seen that before, too.
BANFIELD: They are allowed, though, to bring in -- and I'm sorry it is so graphic, but the reason it is graphic is because this is what the jurors need to decide. They have to -- it is all about the details. It's all about the evidence, and graphic is what they're trying to decide upon.
But you are allowed to bring in brand-new evidence, which is odd in this case. KARAS: Well, Dr. Horne, the medical examiner who did the autopsy, testified a couple of times during the course of the trial. Maybe he could have testified to some of this.
But the defense might have said, wait a second, this is not necessary at this point. We know how he died. He doesn't need to talk about the extent of the suffering. It's more appropriate at this stage. So to that extent, it's new.
BANFIELD: I always feel sorry for jurors. They're doing this for pennies on the day, and they have given their last four months, daily, to this case, almost daily to this case, and then having to go through all of this, you know, almost a second time and then some.
So, Beth Karas, stand by if you will. Thank you for that.
She gets only like a minute or two of a break before they get back under way, so I'm going to let you go. Thank you for your time.
And I also want to make sure that you know that you can catch Beth on Dr. Drew's program. She's going to be with Dr. Drew tonight at 9:00 p.m. Eastern on HLN. And there will be a great wrap-up of all the things that you probably will have missed, unless you can watch gavel to gavel. It's very, very difficult to do so. That's where Beth comes in.
So coming up next, another bizarre case, and gruesome case. Moments ago, a 12-year-old boy accused of killing his little sister. After a couple of weeks of mystery, he's now appeared in court.
We have not heard the details yet from the police in this case until now.
Back right after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIRA SORVINO, ACTRESS, U.N. AMBASSADOR: A lot of what I've learned about human trafficking has been through direct conversations with victims.
I've interviewed many victims in several different country and several different situations and different age ranges.
Almost all the victims I've spoken to have been women and most in sexual exploitation. Some of it is so shocking that it almost ruins you for a few weeks. You can't escape the horrendousness.
This is going to change because it is morally intolerable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BANFIELD: In court this hour, a 12-year-old boy, 12 years old, accused of a horrible crime that shook a small town to its very core, the stabbing death of his own little sister.
Eight-year-old Leila Fowler was stabbed repeatedly at the family home in Calaveras County, California, on April 27th.
Now, originally when the police responded, her brother was there, and he told them that a man had broken into their home while they were home alone while their parents were out.
But over the weekend, the police instead arrested that little brother, that big brother.
Dan Simon was inside the courtroom for the boy's first appearance. Again, a 12-year-old boy, so this is juvenile court.
We haven't known any part of the police investigation or the details of what they found essentially and why their attention was turned to the brother.
What was said in court, Dan?
DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, Ashleigh, we still don't know the details and, in fact, the boy's own attorneys told us that they still don't know the details.
And they say, until they have reason to believe that his client is anything other than innocent, they're going to continue to maintain his innocence.
I was seated just a few feet away from this 12-year-old boy and, if he was stunned or shocked or nervous, he certainly didn't show it. He had sort of this pleasant look on his face.
He glanced repeatedly at his family who was sitting in the front row. All of his parents were there. His father is married to -- he has a stepmother and his biological mother was there as well.
He was basically advised of his charge. He's facing a very serious charge, of course, of second-degree murder, was told that he'll remain in custody until at least until the next hearing, which is May 29th, but it is doubtful that he'll be released anytime soon, Ashleigh.
And as far as these hearings go, it was basically a routine matter, but, of course, it is anything but routine given the circumstances. You talked about it. This case has really rocked this community because who we're talking about. We're talking about a 12- year-old boy who allegedly stabbed his eight-year-old sister.
The next court hearing will be on May 29th. And, obviously, what we really need to know, Ashleigh, is what is the evidence. Why did police point the finger at this 12-year-old boy? At this point, we still don't know those details.
BANFIELD: And how many questions the police asked him before the potential of those parents being able to shut it down. After all, a 12-year-old boy is not the same as any other murder defendant.
Dan Simon, keep an eye on it. Let us know if there is any development there from San Andreas, California, thank you.
Up next, the chief of Boston's fire department, wow, under fire for how he handled the Boston marathon bombings.
His own deputy chiefs, nearly all of them, saying they are just not confident in his leadership any longer.
We'll talk live to the reporter who broke the story and find out what was wrong.
BANFIELD: Want to take you live now to Boston. There is a huge fallout unfolding over the fire chief's response after the Boston marathon bombings, which today is the one-month anniversary since that terror attack.
This is Chief Steve Abraira and 13 of his 14 deputy chiefs are now saying he failed to show leadership after the bombings. And they sent this letter of "no confidence" to Mayor Thomas Menino.
The letter says, in part, quote, "Despite the fact that the members of the Boston fire command staff have become accustomed to this 'ghost' fire chief," end quote, "nothing prepared us for his actions, actually inactions, on the day of the horrific terrorist attack at the Boston marathon."
I want to bring in the man who broke this story in "The Boston Globe," Dave Wedge who is a reporter for "The Globe."
Dave, what exactly is the problem? What is the big complaint that the deputies have of their chief?
DAVE WEDGE, REPORTER, "BOSTON HERALD": First of all, it's "The Boston Herald." Sorry to correct you, Ashleigh, but ...
BANFIELD: I apologize. I stand corrected. "Boston Herald." Very, very important distinction. Thank you.
WEDGE: That's OK. No problem. That's OK.
Well, the issue is the deputies that you mentioned they had a problem with this chief for a while. He is the first outside fire chief ever to be hired in Boston, and, you know, Boston is a pretty insular department, so they like their own.
So there is a bit of a rift there anyway, but there's been all sorts of major incidents we had before the Boston marathon where they've had complaints he has been on the scene, but hasn't really taken command.
Obviously, when the marathon bombings occurred, it was a hugely chaotic scene. Chief Abraira was on the scene, but he didn't take command as he didn't in the other incidents, and the deputy chiefs below him think that he should have done it.
They said that's the way it's always done in the past in Boston, and they would have liked to have seen him take charge of the scene.
And, you know, the letter that you just mentioned is the result, basically saying that this is the straw that broke the camel's back. We've had enough and we need a chief that is going to be our chief in the field and the public face of the department.
BANFIELD: So, Dave, I just want -- in defending himself, the chief actually spoke with our Jason Carroll on the phone earlier. And I just want to paraphrase what he said to Jason on the phone.
In his own defense he says, "In their estimation they believe that if you don't assume command you don't have responsibility there for what goes on.
"I tried to explain to them, if I'm on the scene, I'm still responsible. That's it. But they don't believe it."
I think that the essential question I've got to ask you out of this, is any one of his deputies alleging that perhaps people were worse off or the injuries were worse or potentially deaths because of what they allege was his behavior, or is it far less than that, that they are suggesting is an infraction?
WEDGE: No. I mean, everyone pretty much agrees that the response to the marathon bombing was unprecedented. I mean, it was hugely successful, as you guys have widely reported and other media outlets around the world saw, that there was hundreds of rescues that day.
There was dozens of lives saved because of the actions of the first-responders and civilians and getting them to the hospitals in time with tourniquets and so on and so forth.
This is really an issue that's been going on in the department for a while and the marathon was the day where they say, we needed every hand on deck, we needed people to be in operations mode, and our chief was not and he should have been.
WEDGE: But no one is saying that, you know, that anyone died because of his actions.
But, certainly, they would have liked to have seen him take command at the scene.
BANFIELD: Important to make that distinction as well. And important to make the distinction you are with "The Herald."
You've been doing some great work and we appreciate you joining us today. Dave Wedge, thank you, live from Boston.
We are right back after this break.
ZAIN ASHER, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: From the CNNMoney Newsroom in New York, I'm Zain Asher.
Google's stock price surpassing $900 a share for the first time ever in the company history. Now keep in mind it has never split since the company went public in 2004.
Now, let's look at how Google has done over the past five years. It's up 60 percent compared to five years ago. Back in 2008 it was trading at roughly $550 a share. Right now it's trading at $900 a share.
Now, part of the reason is renewed investor confidence in Google's ability to make money. You've got strong ad sales, plus its Android software is operating on over 600 million smart phones.
Take a look at the market share right here. Android has 70 percent of the market share compared to Apple's iOS, which has 22 percent of the market share. Plus YouTube, which is owned by Google, is now rolling out paid programming, creating new ways to make money from content.
Also, its annual development conference kicked off today in San Francisco. Investors got bullish as they anticipated possible new announcements of products and services.
Now, you've got to remember that last year they announced Google Glass, so expectations this year were very high. This year, the company announced a newer version of Google Maps, a music service similar to Spotify and a new Nexus phone.
Also take a look now at Apple's main competitor -- Google's main competitor, excuse. Apple is not doing so well right now. Its share price has dropped like a stone.
In 2012, it was trading at roughly $700 a share back in September. Now it's trading at roughly $400 a share.
So from the CNNMoney Newsroom in New York, I'm Zain Asher. We'll be back at the same time tomorrow.
BANFIELD: That's it for me live here in Phoenix, Arizona, but "The Lead" with Jake Tapper is coming up next. Thanks for watching.