Return to Transcripts main page


Flood Emergency in South Texas; Moore Seventh Grader Saves Classmate as Tornado Hits; Jodi Arias Fate Still Hangs in the Balance; "Army of One" Attacks on Rise; Deadly Flood in San Antonio; FOX News Aware of Leak Investigation; News Details on Trayvon Martin Released

Aired May 25, 2013 - 17:00   ET


JOE JOHNS, CNN ANCHOR: You're in the CNN NEWSROOM, I'm Joe Johns in for Don Lemon. We begin with breaking news.

San Antonio, Texas is reeling this hour, floodwaters have been rising all around the city all day long. Up to ten inches of rain have pounded the area since just last night. San Antonio is one of the most flood-prone cities in the country. But no area could handle the kind of downpours they've had today. And you can see the results -- the flooding has killed at least one person and another person is missing in, and the water is going to keep rising for a while. It simply has no place to go.


UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: It was under water 20 minutes ago. I came over here, I own the property, and my daughter said that she couldn't get to her car. Her car is all flooded. The property is all, the water is swarming through the whole house. And I just came over to check to see what I could do. But obviously there's nothing that I can do right now.


JOHNS: The San Antonio River has hit a record high flood level. More than a foot higher than the old record set in 1998. At a news conference last hour, the fire chief said his department has received more than 200 calls for water rescues.


CHIEF CHARLES HOOD, SAN ANTONIO FIRE DEPARTMENT: One of the things about rushing water, there's so much debris up underneath that water, there's tires, there's fences, there's all of those things that you cannot see under water that entrap people. So again very dangerous situation. Very proud of the operations of the men and women of the Fire Department.


JOHNS: Karen McGinnis is standing by in the severe weather center. And Karen, any relief in sight for the people of south Texas?

KAREN MCGINNIS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It looks like the bulk of this precipitation mass that we've been looking at has shifted further towards the east. So, San Antonio right now, you're looking at quiet weather conditions. But let me tell you a couple of stories that the police chief recounted to us. A gentleman in high water pinned up against a structure by all of that debris from the floodwaters, they were able to rescue him. And in the missions area, 54 people, the water came down so hard, so heavy, so fast, that they had to evacuate all 50-plus people from that area, they were all safe.

But a number of these stories to tell you about around the metropolitan San Antonio area. Flood warnings, flood watches out all across the region in that San Antonio area. Extending out through Interstate 35, 10 and 37, how much rainfall did we see? Up to ten inches, this is recorded by our satellite imagery. It kind of determines how much rainfall has collected. Eight to 10 inches for most of those areas. And that wasn't even some of the isolated reports. They're saying they could have seen up to a foot.

Then, we have our tornado watch in effect across the northern tier states. One of the thing I want to mention, in Texas, Joe, they're saying there are no tornado warnings out now. But you can imagine that those floodwaters have not receded totally just yet. So even as night comes upon us, it's still going to be extraordinarily dangerous for people to take their vehicles out. They're suggesting you just stay home. Unless it's an absolute emergency. They had eight Kodiaks out, those little inflatable vehicles to rescue people and they were very successful today. That's the good news.

JOHNS: Karen, you reported earlier on a tornado on the ground near Victoria, Texas. Any updates on that?

MCGINNIS: We had a report that it was a brief tornado. There were some images that we looked at. It appeared to be a small tornado. That's easy to say but this is a very violent and moisture-rich atmosphere. And there continues to be these little flare-ups of these particular cells across east Texas. And right now for the most part, what we're expecting is a chance for a couple of these cells to pick up. Right now it's just a heavy rain-producer moving much further to the east.

JOHNS: Karen McGinnis, thanks for that.

A day of profound sadness for the people of Moore, Oklahoma. Three funerals today for those killed in this week's massive tornado. Forty nine-year-old Cindy Plumley and two kids, Christopher Legg and Emily Conatzer, both nine years old.

But also today, a celebration and a welcome break from the heartbreak in the tornado zone. Three high schools in Moore went ahead with their planned graduation ceremonies.

Amid the tragedy in Moore, Oklahoma, stories of heroism are beginning to emerge. One of the most remarkable, a seventh grade who saved his classmate from being blown away.

CNN's Nick Valencia was there as the pair went back to their school.


NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): As he walked 32 to the rubble of his now-leveled school, 13-year-old Dylan Ellis was bewildered.

DYLAN ELLIS, SEVENTH GRADER: See look at that. That's destroyed.

VALENCIA: It was the first time he had been back since the tornado struck.

ELLIS: I don't know how we survived this.

VALENCIA: He remembers taking shelter in the middle school locker room.

ELLIS: Right through in this door.

VALENCIA: He remembers being surrounded by the cries and screams of 50 children.

ELLIS: Lights went off, you could hear it hit the building like loud. And then it comes, takes off our roof.

VALENCIA: No one was killed when the tornado destroyed Highland East Middle School. But this wasn't just a miracle.

DIANE LEE, SEVENTH GRADER: Isn't the choir room gone?

ELLIS: Yes, the choir room is gone.

VALENCIA: Quietly standing next to him is his 12-year-old classmate, seventh grader, Diane Lee. On Monday, Dylan probably saved her life.

VALENCIA (on camera): Did you feel like you were going to get sucked away?

LEE: I felt like the wind around me was like going in circles and everything. And the ground wasn't underneath me anymore and he held on to my hand and jumped on top of me.

ELLIS: I see her start to go up. I jump on her, lay on her and then grab on to the lap bottom of the lockers that were inside the ground. And once it's over, I push her out of the way and then all the debris starts to hit me.

VALENCIA: How did you think so fast? How did you know to do what you did?

ELLIS: I just thought of her as my family, what would I do if they started to go up. Didn't think, just did it.

VALENCIA: How happy are you that he did?

LEE: Really happy or else I probably wouldn't be here.

VALENCIA (voice-over): Already best friends since the start of the school year, Dylan and Diane say the tornado has brought them even closer.

LEE: I can't believe you're actually in there and actually got out. And he helped me.

VALENCIA (on camera): How do you do in school?

ELLIS: Decent. I do OK.

VALENCIA (voice-over): Middle school years are tough, even without a tornado. But Dylan and Diane have ended the semester with an important lesson, that in your darkest hour, friendship will see you through.


JOHNS: Nick Valencia joins me now live from Moore, Oklahoma. And Nick, you have to wonder about the emotional toll on these kids. How long they're going to be stuck with the scars. How are the students dealing with the aftermath of this tornado?

VALENCIA: It's a great point, Joe, a lot of these children and students have gone through so much stress and they've just gone through so much emotionally and physically, some of them, other the course of the last week. In fact, Diane is still very traumatized from the experience. She moved here from New Jersey three years ago. She said she wants to go back. A lot of the kids and students that we've spoken to said they don't want to live in Moore any more. I mean, you can't blame them.

But if there's any uplifting story line throughout this entire experience here for the community, it's the stories like this of Dylan and Diane. It's neighbors helping neighbors, friends helping friends, and that really is given hope to a lot of people here in Moore, Oklahoma -- Joe.

JOHNS: Nick Valencia in Moore, Oklahoma tonight, thanks for that, Nick. If you'd like to help the Oklahoma tornado. We've got a great way for you to do that, just go to, we've got links to charities and a bunch of ways that you can donate through texting, websites by telephone, or by mail, go log on at Impact Your World.

Runners in Boston joined victims of last month's bombing to run the final mile of the Boston marathon today. Around 3,000 people turned out to finish the race, despite a light rain. Explosions near the finish line killed three people and wounded more than 260 on April 15th. The Boston Athletic Association, which organizes the marathon has already invited runners back for next year's race.

Two freight trains colliding in Missouri early today led to the collapse of a highway overpass, injuring seven people. One of the trains hit a pillar, knocking down a section of the road. Two cars drove off the edge in the dark, causing five of the injuries. Only one person needed to be hospitalized. The NTSB, the National Transportation Safety Board has sent a team to investigate.

The body of a local police officer in Kentucky was discovered early today, lying at an exit ramp of the bluegrass parkway. Authorities say he had been shot. Thirty three year old Bardstown officer Jason Ellis had been heading home, driving a police cruiser. Police say there was no communication with Ellis in the moments before he was killed. So far police say they have no suspects.

We're continuing to monitor breaking news out of San Antonio, Texas. Rescue is under way right now to free people trapped from flash flood waters, more than 100 people have been rescued so far.

But next, the Secretary of Defense has strong words about sexual harassment in the military, as he speaks to graduating cadets.


JOHNS: Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel stood before the army's best and brightest today and addressed the issues of sexual harassment and assault in the military.

Hagel made the comments during his graduation address at West Point. Our Athena Jones is in Washington. Athena, President Obama talked about the issue yesterday at the naval academy. What did Hagel say about it?

ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Joe. Well, Secretary Hagel largely echoed the President's words about this problem. The president has said that sexual assault in the military threatened the trust and discipline that make the military strong. That make it able to function effect effectively. Listen to what Secretary Hagel had to say today at West Point echoing that.


CHUCK HAGEL, SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Sexual harassment and sexual assault in the military are a profound betrayal. A profound betrayal of sacred oaths and sacred trusts. This scourge must be stamped out. We're all accountable and responsible for insuring that this happens. We cannot fail the army or America. We cannot fail each other.


JONES: And so there you heard from the secretary. This is the problem the president has said he wants his administration and military chiefs to redouble their efforts to fight, because we have to make sure that the uniformed men and women in the military are able to work together as a team. So this is going to get a lot of attention, Joe.

JOHNS: Athena, West Point is dealing with its own controversy right now. Can you talk a bit about that?

JONES: It is. Now, this isn't a case of sexual assault, but it's certainly a case of sexual impropriety, shall we say. Just last week, a U.S. army sergeant first class was charged with videotaping allegedly videotaping female cadets in their shower and latrine areas, between 2009 and 2012. Army investigators are now reaching out to more than a dozen of these female cadets who may have been caught on videotape. This is someone who this army first class sergeant first class was in a leadership role and so this is something that they're now trying to get to the bottom of as well -- Joe.

JOHNS: Athena Jones in Washington for us tonight, thanks.

JONES: Thanks.

JOHNS: A federal judge gets tough with the man who calls himself America's toughest sheriff. The federal court in Phoenix says, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's strategies to fight illegal immigration crossed the line and actually amount to racial profiling. The court ordered him and his deputies to stop using race to influence law enforcement decisions. They ruling said, they've been targeting Latinos in traffic stops and detaining them too long. Latino activists applauded the judge's order.


ANTONIO BUSTAMANTE, ATTORNEY: We told you so. And we told you so in adamant stringent terms, we watched you as you rounded up brown people because they were brown and just because you could.


JOHNS: Arpaio says, the judge is wrong and he simply enforcing immigration laws, not racial profiling, the sheriff is planning to appeal that ruling.

Coming up, Jodi Arias' trial take two. An Arizona jury cannot decide if the convicted murderer deserves to get to the death penalty. Now, a brand new jury is going to have to decide her fate but could a plea deal possibly be in the works?


JOHNS: Will Jodi Arias live or die. That's the question we've been asking for long time as that trial progresses and we still don't know the answer after a jury deadlock during the death penalty face of her trial.

Ted Rowlands has more from Phoenix.

TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Jodi Arias is back in her cell here at the Maricopa County jail, she's still waiting to find out her fate for killing her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander.


UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: We have an anonymous agreement.

ROWLANDS: The Jodi Arias jury couldn't decide if she should live or die. Eight favored death, the other four wanted to spare her life, including the jury foreman, who told "Good Morning America," that he believes Arias was the victim of abuse.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I'm very sure in my own mind, that she was mentally and verbally abused. Now is that an excuse? Of course not. Does it factor into decisions that we make? It has to.

ROWLANDS: Arias still may be executed. Maricopa County has the option of retying the penalty phase, which would extend the already- nearly five-month-long televised trial. The county attorney has already released a statement indicating they plan to proceed with the intent to retry. A new jury would only decide life or death and would only hear a fraction of the evidence against Jodi Arias.

DWANE CATES, ARIZONA ATTORNEY: This new jury isn't going to have nearly the information that the old jury did. And the jury that made this decision saw every gruesome detail, saw all the lies, saw everything.

SAMANTHA ALEXANDER, VICTIM'S SISTER: Our lives will never be the same. We can never get him back.

ROWLANDS: One factor in the decision to retry will be the family of victim, Travis Alexander. They openly wept in court after hearing the jury was deadlocked. If they decide they've had enough of the courtroom, prosecutors may settle for a life sentence for Jodi Arias.

AARON DEWEY, VICTIM'S FRIEND: I'm with a lot of people out there. I believe that the only appropriate sentence for Jodi is the death penalty. But at this point in the game, I so much would have rather had the jury come back with a life sentence than no sentence at all.


ROWLANDS: One of the jurors, as she was walking out of the courtroom said, sorry to the Alexander family. We expect that a decision will be made on whether or not to retry the penalty phase within the next few weeks before an upcoming status hearing, which is scheduled for June 20th.

JOHNS: Call it Groundhog Day, but no matter what happens next, Jodi Arias' guilty verdict still stands. Criminal Defense Attorney Holly Hughes is here with us now. Holly, this thing just won't stop. And I think one of the big questions of course is, we know about this talk of a retrial.


JOHNS: But what's the chance actually of some type of a plea deal before they get there.

HUGHES: Well, I think what the state is going to want before they offer her anything, Joe, is they're going to say to her, fine, you can have life without parole. But you have to waive all of your appeals in order to get that sentence. And the problem with that is what we've seen through the course of these five months, Jodi Arias is a control freak. And she thinks that she can manipulate the system.

So you better believe she thinks on appeal, that her first-degree murder conviction is going to be reversed. I don't see her ever waiving that right to appeal. I think she's going to say no. Go ahead, try to kill me because it's all coming back, anyway. JOHNS: This is a very unusual and rare process in Arizona.

HUGHES: It is.

JOHNS: Different from most other state, at least I know.


JOHNS: How do you go about getting a jury to rehear just the facts about whether she ought to get the death penalty?

HUGHES: Well, what's going to happen is the state and the defense are going to have to both sides are going to bring the new jury up to speed on everything that happened in what we call the guilt phase, which is the first phase of the trial. You're going to see sort of a mini trial. You're not going to see the abbreviated version we saw in the sentencing phase, because they have to re-explain and introduce all of the evidence that came in in the first part to the new jury. It will be a much longer process than the death phase we saw in this case.

JOHNS: So you're talking about probably another month?

HUGHES: Probably another six weeks, I would think. Because you're going to have to pick a jury and the defense is going to fight tooth and nail. They're going to look for a change of venue. They're going to say these jurors cannot be fair. There's no way they're going to try to excuse people for cause. So the jury selection process alone will probably take about two to three weeks, then another three weeks of evidence.

JOHNS: There's another question of venue. Obviously you can't move it out of the state of Arizona because it's a state trial.

HUGHES: Correct. That's right.

JOHNS: But could they possibly move it to some other part of the state?

HUGHES: Here's the thing. I fully expect the defense will ask for that, they're going to say we want a change of venue, you know, the Maricopa County jury can't be fair. But the judge has to look at all the -- what she's going to say is, who in Arizona could be fair? Who has not been exposed to all of the facts and circumstances of this trial? It's been in the media ad Nauseum.

And, you know, all the reporters have been saying, hey, it's been on the front page of every newspaper in Arizona as well. So even if you're not watching the TV, if you go out to your front porch in the morning and pick up that newspaper, Jodi Arias murder trial has been splashed across the front page for months on end.

JOHNS: Right. And it will be again and perhaps for quite a while.

HUGHES: That's exactly right. So change in the venue will not work.

JOHNS: Thanks, Holly.

HUGHES: Thanks.

JOHNS: And don't go anywhere because you'll be back, obviously to talk.


JOHNS: In a little while about that high profile murder case in Florida, the George Zimmerman trial. Thanks for that.


JOHNS: New developments now, in that machete attack on the streets of London. And we're asking are attacks like this the future of terrorism?


LEMON: Right-wing groups in England are saying their country is at war with Islamic radicalism and call for Muslims to leave Britain as a response to the killing of a soldier in London this week.


A protest by the English defense league today drew a bigger crowd than had been expected. The march came hours after a group that monitors anti-Muslim abuse told CNN, they had seen a spike in the number of reported incidents the past two days.

Police have made three new arrests in the case of a British soldier hacked to death in London. And we're learning new details about the past of one of the prime suspects. Sources in Kenya say Michael Adebolajo travelled there in 2010 and was arrested for trying to cross the border into Somalia. That area has seen attacks by Islamic militants over the past year. No charges were filed against him according to Kenyan media and it's not clear at all whether Adebolejo -- I'm sorry for that pronunciation -- may have traveled to the region on more than one occasion.

A British soldier murdered in broad daylight on the streets of London, home-made bombs set off in Boston, killing three people and injuring 264, these two horrendous crimes were separated by one month and more than 3,000 miles, but they also have a lot in common. It's believed that each was a random unsophisticated attack carried out by self-radicalized Islamists.

I want to bring in CNN security analyst Tom Fuentes from D.C., and CNN terrorism analyst Paul Cruickshank in London. Paul, I want to start with you. Do you agree with the assessment that these types of attacks are the future of terrorism?

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: Well, I think they are going to be a significant part of the future of terrorism. Not just armies of one, but two or three or four individuals often acting in al- Qaeda's name. So significant part of the future. And al-Qaeda itself have been encouraging this trend maybe telling followers, don't come to Pakistan or Yemen and join not with us, get trained with us, but stay home and launch attacks at home.

And if you look over the United States over the past several years, you've had several dozen Islamist terrorist cases, most of those have been of the lone wolf variety. But I think at the same time, it would be wrong to discount the possibility of larger, more sophisticated attacks from al-Qaeda again hitting the United States in the future. There's still this Yemeni affiliates of al-Qaeda, which has come close to bombing airplanes over the United States in recent years. Still has quite a lot of capability.

There's still a bomb-maker in Yemen connected. Their group still launch. And if you look across the Arab world, North Africa, the Sahara region, al-Qaeda is really -- its affiliate is really sort of made a lot of gains in recent years. Their priority right now has been on actually creating Islamic states, taking advantage of the Arab Spring to create Islamic states in the region. But that could actually change if that dream starts to fade, Joe.

JOHNS: Tom, the Tsarnaev brothers in the Boston bombing and the London killers have been described as a new generation of Jihadist who either were born in the west or raise there, do you think that's a coincidence or do you think it's a trend?

TOM FUENTES, CNN SECURITY ANALYST: I think, Joe, I disagree with the premise, I don't think anything is new here. We've had the attempts by al-Qaeda to recruit westerners, the Europeans, the Americans all along even before 9/11. It's just that they're increasingly getting people radicalized who either live here or can travel here very easily. As far as this attack in London, if you recall a couple of years ago, the case of Jihad Jane in the U.S., that was trying to put together a group to go to Scandinavia, and hack to death the editor of a newspaper who ran cartoons about the Prophet Muhammad. So very similar. They were going to do a home invasion and just hack this person to death.

So we've seen -- we've seen these individualized radical people. We've seen groups of one and two or three. And the reality is that it's almost impossible to stop them because you aren't going to know of it until it's too late.

JOHNS: Paul, I want to replay a few seconds of that chilling message left by one of those London killers. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED LONDON KILLER: We swear by the Almighty we will never stop fighting until you leave us alone. We must fight them as they fight us, therefore, an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. I apologize that women had to witness this today. But in our land, women have to see the same. Our people will never be safe. Remove your government. They don't care about you. Do you think David Cameron will get caught in the street? When we start busting our guns, do you think the politicians are going to die? No, it will be the average guy, like you. (END VIDEO CLIP)

JOHNS: Paul, it's been said this message had all the hallmarks of classic al Qaeda rhetoric. Is it going too far to say that al Qaeda is behind the rise of these kinds of attacks?

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: Al Qaeda has been encouraging the trend. They've been telling people to launch attacks at home without going to places like Pakistan or Yemen. They say, even if you launch small attacks, that's a good thing, that helps our cause.

I think another thing that's behind this rise of lone-wolf terrorism is the fact that it's become more difficult for Western militants to connect with jihadist groups overseas. We saw that in the Boston case, where a Tsarnaev, who tried to go to Dagestan, tried to connect with jihadist groups but failed and launched this attack in Boston. And also, with this case in the U.K. where the killer, in 2010, tried to connect with a Somali militant group, al-Shabaab, got as far as Kenya but was then arrested. And also subsequently, launched an attack in the U.K.

JOHNS: Tom, like the Tsarnaev brothers, the suspected terrorist in London had been flagged by officials as a potential threat. Yet, nothing was really done. How is it that officials can get a jump on terrorists and still sort of adhere to Western legal principles?

FUENTES: The problem is that the officials can't read their minds. You don't know when they cross the line from thinking bad thoughts to actually grabbing the knife or the meat cleaver or the bomb and killing people. And that point of time, when they become violent, is almost -- unless you know what they're thinking or unless somebody very close to the individual reports to the authorities what they're thinking, you just don't know.

Tom Fuentes, Paul Cruickshank, thanks for that. We'll be in touch.


JOHNS: We're continuing to monitor breaking news out of San Antonio, Texas. Rescues under way right now to free people trapped by flash floodwaters. More than 100 people have been rescued so far. The latest from the CNN Severe Weather Center, coming up next.


JOHNS: San Antonio, Texas, is taking a beating by rising floodwaters caused by torrential rains. The water has been rising all day long. Up to 10 inches of rain have pounded the area since last night.

Karen McGinnis standing by right now at the Severe Weather Center.

Karen, is the rain over yet for south Texas?

KAREN MCGINNIS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: No. In a nutshell, it's not. There's still lots of moisture that is available. It's coming in from the Gulf of Mexico. That's where we tapped that moisture that moved in across southeastern and eastern Texas. Just this constant flow. You get the warm temperatures, you get this moisture that comes in from the gulf. Just pumping it into the atmosphere. A little rotation and there you've got some tornadoes.

Take a look at some of this imagery or video that we're showing you, from KSAT, of a flooded street and there looks to be a vehicle that is submerged in the water. Up to 10 inches in some of these areas, and they were saying that an apartment complex had to evacuate some 54 people.

There's a water rescue. A gentleman, this was a golf course, he got on top of this building. They sent this Kodiak rescue boat out to rescue him. He appeared to be fine, put on his life jacket.

But there's a fatality, a 29-year-old woman. They found her abandoned vehicle and they found her body in the floodwaters.

They managed to pull this bus -- this also if our affiliate, KSAT. There were three people that had to be rescued from the bus. They are said to be OK. They, there is one person reported missing. But the roads are still very problematic.

What can we expect as we go through time? We're looking at the rain probabilities. They're going to be roughly around 30 to 40 percent. Much of the moisture has moved on towards east Texas. From Corpus Christi, northward to not quite to Houston just yet. But this is the trouble area. Here's a tornado warning. What we've seen from these particular cells had been some very weak tornadoes reported in open fields.

So, John, it looks like -- or, Joe, it looks like we're going to see the chance we might see some of these isolated storms. But for the most part, we are looking at on-and-off showers until tomorrow morning.

JOHNS: That video really caught my eye of cars driving through standing water. That's really a no-no, isn't it?

MCGINNIS: It really is. They say, don't drown, turn around. And they have markers to mark barriers to keep you from going into these flooded areas. Some people go around them, thinking their vehicles can make it. But just a couple of feet of water can float a vehicle.

JOHNS: Karen McGinnis, thanks for that.

It's a day of unthinkable loss for some families in Moore, Oklahoma, but for others, celebrations in the face of tragedy. Three funerals today for people killed in the tornado, 49-year-old Cindy Plumley, and two kids, Christopher Legg and Emily Conatzer, both nine years old. But also today, a look toward the future and a welcome break from tornado clean-up. Three high schools in Moore went ahead on schedule with their graduation ceremonies.

But first, rebuilding your home after it's been hit by a natural disaster can be financially and emotionally draining as you navigate the maze of insurance paperwork. Knowing what to do before disaster strikes can make a huge difference.

Here's Christine Romans with this week's "Smart is the New Rich."


CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): More than 2,400 homes damaged or destroyed by the devastating tornado that rocked Moore, Oklahoma. For home owners forced out of their properties by a natural disaster, the painful process of rebuilding and insurance claims starts now.

Mary and Tom Walls know a thing or two about that. Seven months ago their New Jersey home on the floor was flooded during Hurricane Sandy.

TOM WALLS, HURRICANE VICTIM: I think there was a certain shock when the water was coming in my house, I couldn't believe it. It didn't knock the front door down it just kind of rose up --

MARY WALLS, HURRICANE VICTIM: Bubbled up through the carpeting.

TOM WALLS: Rose up through the carpeting.


ROMANS (voice-over): What's the first call you make? The first call you make after everyone is safe? Is it to the person who sold you the insurance policy?

JEANNE SALVATORE, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, INSURANCE INFORMATION INSTITUTE: The first thing you should do is get in touch with your insurance company. Let them know the extent of the damage and where you can be reached when you're covered for wind damage, for fire, for falling objects. The two big disasters that are not covered, one is flood, and the other is earthquake. And you need to get separate insurance for those types of disasters.

TOM WALLS: There are people that just experienced so much worse than we did. You know, my insurance company didn't pay for everything. But in the final analysis, I was satisfied with the dollar amount.

ROMANS (voice-over): They spent most of the past seven months displaced, but were able to move back into their home last month.

TOM WALLS: Keep the faith. Things will get better.


TOM WALLS: You need family and friends.

MARY WALLS: And don't be afraid to ask for help.

ROMANS: Christine Romans, CNN, New York.


JOHNS: Next, new details on a Justice Department leak investigation and what a law enforcement source told CNN about the timeline of the investigation.


JOHNS: New details are surfacing that FOX News was aware years ago that the Justice Department was targeting one of its reporters in a leak investigation, raising questions about why FOX didn't reveal that, and why it's only objecting now. A law enforcement source tells CNN that the Justice Department notified a media organization almost three years ago of a subpoena for detailed telephone records. And a second source tells CNN, that organization was FOX News. It was part of an ongoing investigation of Steven Kemp, a former State Department worker, accused of unauthorized disclosure of sensitive information to FOX correspondent James Rosen.

One law enforcement source told CNN, "In the investigation that led to the indictment of Steven Kim, the government issued subpoenas for toll records for five numbers associated with the media." Consistent with Department of Justice policies and procedures, the government provided notification of those subpoenas nearly three years ago by certified mail, facsimile and email.

Up until now, the focus of this controversy has been on a search warrant for the personal emails of James Rosen. The network has indicated it learned of the warrant for the emails just recently. And newly-released court documents show the government was trying to keep the investigation under seal. But the claims of the law enforcement sources about the notice given about the subpoenaed phone records suggests FOX could have known at least that the Department of Justice was going after its phone records years ago. At the same time, that notice did not detail the extent of the investigation in which the government calls James Rosen a possible co-conspirator in a crime.

CNN has reached out to FOX for comment, beginning Friday evening, but the network has not responded.

FOX and other news organizations have been highly critical of the Justice Department's aggressive pursuit of leak investigations involving reporters. But if FOX knew about the subpoenas almost three years ago, as law enforcement suggests, the question is why the network is raising objections only now.

Texts about drug use and pictures of a gun. Lawyers representing Florida teen, Trayvon Martin, say, they're irrelevant. Ahead, I'll ask a defense attorney how this new evidence could impact the trial of the man charged with murdering him.


JOHNS: Material taken from Florida teenager Trayvon Martin's cell phone, including a text-message discussion of drug use and pictures of a gun, are among new details released by George Zimmerman's defense attorneys.

David Mattingly has the latest maneuverings leading up to Zimmerman's murder trial.


DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Are these the photographs of a troubled and violent teen? Pictures and text messages from Trayvon Martin's phone, made public by George Zimmerman's defense attorney, suggests the 17-year-old was no stranger to pot, to guns, and to fighting.

MARK O'MARA, ATTORNEY FOR GEORGE ZIMMERMAN: I am not sure if it is recreation or whatever, he is very used to fighting, that he has used drugs in the past, and again, many 17-year-olds have, but that he has as well.

MATTINGLY: Three months before he encountered George Zimmerman, Trayvon Martin sent text messages about a fight, saying his opponent "didn't bleed enough, only his nose." Less than a week before the fatal encounter, Martin texted, "I hid my weed, it's wrapped," and, "I got weed and I get money Friday."

The attorney for Martin's family says the messages, the images, and their implications are irrelevant.

BENJAMIN CRUMP, ATTORNEY FOR TRAYVON MARTIN'S FAMILY: Are they trying to say George Zimmerman was justified in killing Trayvon Martin because of the way he looked? It is the same stereotypical mind set that caused George Zimmerman to get out of the car and chase Trayvon Martin, and that just isn't acceptable in America.

MATTINGLY: Trayvon Martin was unarmed the night he was shot and killed by George Zimmerman. But a week before, he seems to be trying to sell an automatic pistol, and apparently turns down an offer of $150.

(on camera): It is possible the jury may never see these texts or these photos. But his attorneys are making it clear, if prosecutors try to attack George Zimmerman's character, then they're prepared to do the same to Trayvon Martin.

David Mattingly, CNN, Atlanta.


JOHNS: Holly Hughes is back now.

You're a criminal defense lawyer. You used to be a prosecutor.


JOHNS: Where is the defense going with this?

HUGHES: What they're trying to show is that George Zimmerman may not have been the aggressor that night. This is going to come down to who was the aggressor, who started the fight. George Zimmerman is saying, I didn't do anything, I got on the phone, tried to notify the police. This is his defense. What they want to show is, well, the victim in this case, Trayvon, may have had something in his pants that would have led him to be the initial aggressor. I don't think it is going to get in.


HUGHES: I think it is irrelevant.

JOHNS: So it is putting the victim on trial also.

HUGHES: Absolutely.

JOHNS: A common tactic.

HUGHES: That's exactly right. Here in Georgia, it is called Chandler evidence. You have to file a motion, ask the judge for permission, say, hey, there are things in the victim's past that make him violent or make him susceptible to being the initial aggressor. And the judge will make a decision on that, prior to trial, so that the jury doesn't get tainted if they say, this is not admissible evidence.

JOHNS: So you don't think it is relevant?

HUGHES: I don't. I don't think it is relevant. First of all, evidence like that would only go to if he had violence in his past, if he was convicted of some type of violence. The fact that he sent a text message about weed, took a picture of a gun, my goodness, people send me pictures all the time on my cell phone. If you saw some of the things my law partner sent me on the phone -- you know what I mean -- it doesn't mean I am a violent person or a convicted felon. So I don't think it is coming in, I think it is irrelevant, I think it is victim bashing, and just an attempt at this point to prejudice the jury.

JOHNS: But people sitting out there, and they actually watch "Law and Order" or used to, are going --


-- to say I heard about this prior bad acts.

HUGHES: Right. And prior bad acts are not admissible. That's why, if your state has something akin to the Chandler rule, you can ask the judge permission ahead of time, but prior bad acts are not admissible for that very reason. Because even if --


JOHNS: People are going to say it shows propensity for something.

HUGHES: Right. Exactly. Well, you would normally see people use that against a defendant. Like, if you had prior bad acts against George Zimmerman, the state wouldn't be able to use them either. So fair is fair. There's a way for each side to address the judge and say, can we, may we use this evidence. But I don't see this particular evidence coming in because, like I said, weed, OK, so he said I've got some weed. We don't even know if that's true. What if that's a teenage kid boasting, trying to get friends to hang out with him. What we need some criminal conviction or something provable in order for the judge to say it possibly could be relevant.

JOHNS: Holly Hughes, thanks as always. Always good to see you.

HUGHES: Thank you. You, too!

JOHNS: Up next, when disaster struck Moore, Oklahoma, this "CNN Hero" was on the scene in two hours flat. And he's still there helping victims.


JOHNS: We are keeping an eye on the rising flood waters around San Antonio, the latest rescue efforts there in just two minutes.

But first, so many amazing stories still emerging from Moore, Oklahoma. Hundreds of emergency responders raced in to help when the tornado hit, among them, a team led by 2008 "CNN Hero," Tad Agolia, armed with lots of heavy equipment. And they headed straight to the Plaza Towers Elementary School.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've never seen anything like this.

TAD AGOLIA, CNN HERO: Watching the news and literally seeing this tornado touch downright before our very eyes.


AGOLIA: We knew it was powerful.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There it is. It's a mile -- right there.

AGOLIA: My first response team was prepositioned. We were able to get here within two hours after the strike. We saw massive destruction right off the bat.

We were able to get police escorts and we were brought right to the school. Search and rescue had just begun.

We had some equipment on site that really was needed, cranes to lift up heavy debris, CAT machines with buckets to move debris out of the way.

We were digging through an area of the school where we thought there could be some young children trapped. Seeing the desks, pieces of paper that children had written on, it just stopped me in my tracks and it reminded me of why I do what I do every day.

My team has been to over 50 large scale disasters. Places like the earthquake in Haiti, Superstorm Sandy. This could be almost as bad as Joplin.

I'm not a scientist, but something is changing. The disasters are becoming more epic.


AGOLIA: Thanks to the news, meteorologists, thanks to technology --

UNIDENTIFIED METEOROLOGIST: You need to be in your tornado shelter immediately.

AGOLIA: -- people are becoming more aware of how to prepare and get out of harm's way when these large scale disasters strike.

We've come here to help, to be a part of the community. But it's always vitally important for me and my team to remember every house had a family living in it. And they need a helping hand.