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Jury Verdict of George Zimmerman Trial Analyzed; Juror in George Zimmerman Trial Interviewed; East Coast Heatwave; Full Recovery Expected for 6-Year-Old Sinkhole Victim

Aired July 16, 2013 - 07:00   ET



RACHEL JEANTEL, TRAYVON MARTIN'S FRIEND: Trayvon is not a thug. That's just their opinions.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: A CNN exclusive, inside the jury room, one of the Zimmerman trial jurors breaks her silence. Was race a factor? Who screamed they believed was on that 911 call and why did some want to vote guilty?

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Outrage and protests against the verdict turned violent overnight. Dozens arrested, this, as a key witness for the prosecution speaks out in another CNN exclusive. Rachel Jeantel in an interview you can only see here.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Dangerous heat. A brutal week long heat wave is burning up the eastern half of the country. Is it going to be the worst week of the summer? Can the power grids hold?

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.

ANNOUNCER: What you need to know.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We thought Nathan was dead, and they said he's got a heartbeat.

ANNOUNCER: What you just have to see.

This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, and Michaela Pereira.


CUOMO: Good morning, everybody. Welcome back to NEW DAY. It's Tuesday, July 16th, 7:00 in the East. I'm Chris Cuomo.

BOLDUAN: Good morning, everyone. I'm Kate Bolduan. We're joined by news anchor, Michaela Pereira.

PEREIRA: Good morning.

BOLDUAN: Coming this up hour, we are covering all the angles of the George Zimmerman case with two major exclusive interviews. A juror speaking out for the very first time talking about how they reached the controversial not guilty verdict after they were divided at the very beginning when they started deliberating what she says led to the decision that sparked protests across the nation.

CUOMO: And later we'll talk with Rachel Jeantel. Trayvon Martin's friend, key witness for the prosecution, she's going to talk about what it was like for her, that experience, and something that she'll call "BS" that happened in the trial.

We have her legal team, Jeffrey Toobin, Danny Cevallos, Sunny Hostin, all weighing in on what we learned from the juror and what it means how this verdict came to be.

PEREIRA: And a lot of other headlines we want to get to today, including new developments in the recovery of a six-year-old boy. We remember telling you about this yesterday. He was trapped for nearly four hours under a sand dune. Doctors calling his survival a miracle.

CUOMO: It is, wait until you hear that story.

BOLDUAN: How long he was trapped, it's amazing.

CUOMO: We'll get to the exclusive interviews in a moment. But first, breaking news, the tension building since the George Zimmerman verdict hit a flash point overnight on the west coast. Protesters in Los Angeles raided a Wal-Mart, attacked people on sidewalks, and in San Francisco even blocked a major freeway. More than a dozen arrests were made in L.A. with the police chief saying this will not be allowed to continue. We begin with Alina Machado live from Sanford, Florida. Good morning, Alina.

ALINA MACHADO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. Things remained calm and peaceful in Sanford, Florida. But for the third night in a row we have seen protest in other cities around the country.


MACHADO: Hundreds of protesters across the country voicing their opposition to the not guilty verdict. Overnight in Los Angeles, police say incidents of vandalism and assaults have resulted in more than a dozen arrests.

CHIEF CHARLIE BECK, LAPD: Unfortunately the rights of the many have been abused by the actions of a few.

MACHADO: Paramedics treated a local news crew at the scene. The LAPD said someone threw a hard projectile at the crew, hitting the photographer in the head. In Oakland, California, all lanes of interstate 880 were shut down by hundreds of protesters, a similar scene in Houston, and in Atlanta, in front of the CNN headquarters.

Hundreds of thousands of people have signed an online petition by the NAACP pushing for a civil rights case against Zimmerman. Attorney General Eric Holder says the Justice Department will continue investigating possible federal charges.

ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: Moreover I want to assure you that the department will continue to act in a manner that is consistent with the facts and the law.

MACHADO: Florida prosecutors say they are still convinced Zimmerman is guilty.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One word to describe George Zimmerman?


MACHADO: Meanwhile, Zimmerman's parents say they are sorry for the tragedy.

GLADYS ZIMMERMAN, MOTHER: We are deeply sorry for this tragedy, deeply sorry, and we pray for the departed. We pray for Trayvon Martin.


MACHADO: Zimmerman's parents say they have received death threats, and they also say Zimmerman remains in hiding and that he'll likely stay in hiding to are a very long time. Kate?

BOLDUAN: Alina Machado, thank you so much, Alina.

Amid all of this, for the first time we are hearing from a juror in the George Zimmerman trial. She says Zimmerman's heart was in the right place on the night Trayvon Martin was killed. CNN's Anderson Cooper sat down exclusively with juror B37, who is in shadow as you see because she says she fears for her family's safety.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: How significant were the 911 tapes for you?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Lauer tape was the most significant because it went through before the struggle, during the struggle, the gunshot, and then after.

COOPER: You had the parents of Trayvon Martin testifying, you had the family of George Zimmerman, friends of George Zimmerman testifying about whose voice it was on the 911 call. Whose voice do you think it was on the 911 call?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it was George Zimmerman's.

COOPER: Did everybody in the jury agree with that?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All but probably one.

COOPER: And what made you think it was George Zimmerman's voice?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because of the evidence that he was the one that had gotten beaten.

COOPER: I want to ask you about some of the different witnesses. Rachel Jeantel, the woman who was on the phone with Trayvon Martin at the start of the incident, what did you make of her testimony?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I didn't think it was very credible but I felt very sorry for her. She didn't ask to be in this place. She didn't ask -- she wanted to go. She wanted to leave. She didn't want to be any part of this jury. I think she felt inadequate toward everyone because of her education and her communication skills. I just felt sadness for her.

COOPER: What did you think of George Zimmerman?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think George Zimmerman is a man whose heart was in the right place but just got displaced by the vandalism in the neighborhoods and wanting to catch these people so badly that he went above and beyond what he really should have done. But I think his heart was in the right place. It just went terribly wrong.

COOPER: Do you think he's guilty of something?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he's guilty of not using good judgment. When he was in the car, he had called 911, he shouldn't have gotten out of that car. But the 911 operator also when he was talking to him kind of egged him on. I don't know if it's their policy to tell them what to do, not to get out of the car, to stay in their car, but I think he should have said stay in your car, not, can you see where he's gone?

COOPER: Do you feel George Zimmerman should have been carrying a gun?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he has every right to carry a gun. I think it's everybody's right to carry a gun as long as they use it the way it's supposed to be used and be responsible in using it.

COOPER: You can't say for sure whether or not Trayvon Martin knew that George Zimmerman was carrying a gun?


COOPER: So you can't say for sure whether or not Trayvon Martin reached for that gun.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right, but that doesn't make it right. There is not a right or a wrong, even if he did reach for the gun, it doesn't make any difference.

COOPER: How so?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, because George had a right to protect himself at that point.

COOPER: So you believe that George Zimmerman really felt his life was in danger?


COOPER: Based on the testimony you heard, you believe that Trayvon Martin was the aggressor? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think the roles changed. I think George got in a little bit too deep, which he shouldn't have been there, but Trayvon decided that he wasn't going to let him scare him and get the one over up on him, or something. And I think Trayvon got mad and attacked him.

COOPER: What did you think of the testimony of Trayvon Martin's mother and father? Do you find them credible?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think they said anything a mother and father would say, just like George Zimmerman's mom and father. I think, they're your kids. You want to believe that they're innocent and that was their voice, because hearing that voice would make it credible that they were the victim, not the aggressor.

COOPER: So in a way both sets of parents kind of canceled each other out in your mind?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They did, definitely, because if I was a mother, I would want to believe so hard that it was not my son that did that or was responsible for any of that, that I would convince myself probably that it was his voice.

COOPER: How critical was it for you in your mind to have an idea of whose voice it was yelling for help? How important was that yell for help?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it was pretty important because it was a long cry and scream for help that whoever was calling for help was in fear of their life.

COOPER: Do you feel that George Zimmerman racially profiled Trayvon Martin? Do you think race played a role in his decision, his view of Trayvon Martin as suspicious?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think he did. I think just circumstances caused George to think that he might be a robber or trying to do something bad in the neighborhood because of all that had gone on previously. There were an unbelievable number of robberies in the neighborhood.

COOPER: So you don't believe race played a role in this case?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think it did. I think if there was another person, Spanish, white, Asian, if they came in the same situation they were Trayvon was, I think George would have reacted the exact same way.

COOPER: Why do you think George Zimmerman found Trayvon Martin suspicious then?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because he was cutting through the back, it was raining. He said he was looking in houses as he was talking down the road, kind of just not having a purpose to where he was going. He was stopping and starting. But I mean, that's George's rendition of it. But I think the situation where Trayvon got into him being late at night, dark at night, raining, and anybody would think anybody walking down the road, stopping and turning and looking, if that's exactly what happened, is suspicious. And George had said that he didn't recognize who he was.

COOPER: Was that a common belief on the jury that race was not, that race did not play a role in this?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think all of us thought race did not play a role.

COOPER: So nobody else felt race played a role.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I can't speak for them.

COOPER: That wasn't a part of the discussion in the jury room.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, we never had that discussion.

COOPER: Why did you want to speak?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want people to know that we put everything into everything to get this verdict. We didn't just go in there and say we're going to come in here and just do guilty/not guilty. We thought about it for hours and cried over it afterwards. I don't think any of us could ever do anything like that ever again.


CUOMO: Obviously emotional there at the end. Let's bring in Jeffrey Toobin, CNN senior legal analyst and former prosecutor, criminal defense attorney Danny Cevallos. Jeffrey, we'll start with you. One of the big questions is, did the jury do the job, did this seem like a verdict that they arrived at in the right way, listening to the interview what is your take?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Certainly based on the evidence, that's all you can ask of a jury. And I thought she displayed a remarkable mastery of the evidence, including, frankly some of the things I missed in the testimony.

I also think she indicated a great deal of sympathy for George Zimmerman, more than I would have expected. At one point in the interview Anderson said do you feel sorry for Trayvon Martin, and she says I feel sorry for both of them. That really rocked me back when you consider that Trayvon Martin is dead. And, but, but, you know, this is why we have jurors. I thought it was a rational verdict, that was a rational discussion of the evidence, and here we are.

BOLDUAN: And what do you think of how the jury vote breakdown went. When they went into the room she says that three jurors were thinking not guilty, three jurors were thinking guilty, two manslaughter, one second-degree murder. Does that surprise you that they began there and where they ended up? DANNY CEVALLOS, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, no, because when it splits like that, somewhere some minority is going to get eventually worn down to zero. So either that or they deadlock.

But what I would be interested to hear this is a juror who clearly by her own words was not guilty from the minute that door closed in the jury room. So the question becomes what about the person who voted depraved heart murder on the first poll? That person would have an interesting story to tell because they went from the door closes, I believe we that ill will and I believe he's guilty of depraved heart murder, to complete 180 degrees where eventually that person had to capitulate and say, fine, you got me. I'm hungry, I want to go home, it's a not-guilty. That's the decision process that would be fascinating to dissect.

CUOMO: And a lot of the speculation during the trial was, is this jury getting what really matters, what's being confused. What did it mean to you when we heard the juror say that race wasn't an issue, that they didn't like that he got out of the car, they don't like a lot of the things that George Zimmerman did. They think he was guilty of not using good judgment, but that it was all about self-defense. What does that mean to you?

TOOBIN: If they excluded race from their analysis that was proper under the law because race was not an element of any of the crimes charged or self-defense. But I thought it was fascinating that in her words, what she described, she thought that George went too far, she used language like that. As soon as you hear went too far, that is the language of an imperfect self-defense. That is potentially the language of manslaughter.

So it's interesting to me even though some people wanted to find him guilty of something, but she ultimately felt that he was not guilty, yet she uses language that I think the prosecution would agree is part of the language of manslaughter.

CEVALLOS: But if you look at the facts of the case, every dispute before her, before the jury, she thought the defense won. Whose voice was it calling for help, she thought it was George Zimmerman, who initiated the fight, she thought it was Trayvon Martin. When it comes to the disputed fact she was very much with the defense.

BOLDUAN: And what about what was seen as one of the most pivotal moments, at least from those watching from the outside, when both, when mothers both testified saying that was my son's voice on that tape. She said that they canceled each other out, those testimonies. Does that surprise you? Because from looking in from the outside, that seemed that that must have had an impact.

TOOBIN: Not really -- the parents testifying, of course we all have a bias about our children and I thought it really vindicated the defense decision to call all those other witnesses to say that was George's voice, that was George's voice. I mean, that was a very striking moment in the trial when you had four, five, six witnesses say that sounded like George Zimmerman and there was no hesitation in her voice when she said to Anderson I thought that was George Zimmerman calling for help.

BOLDUAN: The fact they reached such a conclusion when there are so many people on both sides, though more say George Zimmerman it seems as the witnesses were brought. Danny Cevallos, thank you so much. Jeffrey Toobin, it's always great to have you. Thank you.

We're going to have more of this exclusive interview in our next hour. You're going to want to see that, and Anderson will be joining us more in the 8:00 hour to get his impressions from that great exclusive interview.

CUOMO: All right, let's deal with another big story this morning. The sweltering combination of heat and humidity hitting the northeast could turn deadly. Take a look at that red zone, millions of people in the northeast are feeling this heat wave and in you live in the Midwest or northern plains you're going to feel it later this week. Let's talk more with Indra Petersons outside which means she's very hot here in New York City. It was about 85 degrees at 2:30 in the morning. What is it like out there now?

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Literally, it's actually 80 degrees here right now but here is the deal we are talking about 70 percent humidity. Let me tell you, now that the sun is out I can't even tell you the difference. It's right on my back and it's oppressive. The cool time of the morning pretty much doesn't exist. That is how hot it is. It's here to stay and going to affect a huge chunk of the nation, take a look.


PETERSONS: Heat and humidity continue to pummel the east coast as a brutal heat wave sends temperatures off the charts from Michigan to Maryland.

MAKIA WISE, NEW YORK RESIDENT: It's really hot out here. I feel like I'm going to melt.

PETERSONS: The heat is no laughing matter. Heat kills an average of 119 people per year and this heat wave could last all week.

KEVIN BAUMLIN, MOUNT SINAI HOSPITAL: Your body temperature starts to rise higher than your ability to get rid of heat, perspire, et cetera, or cool down, then your body can get into significant trouble.

PETERSONS: In New York a major energy company set up a command center. They'll monitor the electrical systems as the temperature continues to climb.

CHRIS OLERT, CON EDISON SPOKESMAN: The heat wave impacts the system because it doesn't cool off.

PETERSONS: The his voltage from overheated systems have already caused power outages throughout New York.

OLERT: This indicates there are 1,128 customers without electricity.

PETERSONS: And with Washington, D.C., blazing in the mid-90s it's dangerous for anyone working outside.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Humidity gets high, it gets hard to breathe, and just sweat a lot. Every once in a while a guy will pass out.

PETERSONS: The soaring temperatures are affecting up to 50 million people this week. All of them just trying to figure out how to beat the heat.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have air conditioning at home.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cranking up the air conditioning.



PETERSONS: What makes it so dangerous is how long this heatwave is supposed to last. I mean really we're not expecting to see relief up until this week and this huge (INAUDIBLE) high pressure expected to stay with us.

And in fact heat is the biggest killer of all weather events; 120 people have died a year from this so think about that, do not underestimate the heat out there. Definitely dangerous. Drink your fluids, wear the light colored clothing.

We're talking about heat indices today. When you talk about temperatures 95 degrees you add in the humidity even in the afternoon it will feel like 95, even 105 degrees out there. Again it's going to last for several days.

We are looking for the relief as far as when are we going to see that relief, not until the weekend. But there's kind of a mixed bag situation here. We're going to talk about a cold front moving in, so yeah it'll drop the temperatures, but we know hot and moist air that is energy when you combine that with a cold front. We could be talking about severe weather for the second portion of this week especially some heavy rain as we go into the weekend, be monitoring that as well. For now one thing at a time, it is hot out here. I don't know if you can see the sweat dripping off my face, it's getting worse.

BOLDUAN: We don't call it sweating, we call it glistening.

PETERSONS: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Exactly.

There is a lot of news developing at this hour, so let's get straight to Michaela for the latest.

PERIERA: We'd forgive her if she took a dip in the fountain, would we not?


CUOMO: She'd get arrested. PERIERA: There is that, but we have an attorney on hand.


PERIERA: All right, let's take a look at the breaking news that we're following. A North Korean ship seized in Panama and military weapons found on board hidden in a cargo of brown sugar. Panamanian authorities say the 35 crew members resisted arrest and that the captain tried to kill himself. Right now it's not clear exactly what kind of weapons were found. The ship had sailed from Cuba. At first authorities thought it was hauling drugs. More coming up.

We can learn more today about why actor Cory Monteith died. The coroner in Canada has finished the autopsy now. Early results could be released today but toxicology test results could take longer to come back. The "Glee" star was found dead Saturday in a Vancouver hotel room, he was just 31 years. Authorities have ruled out foul play.

Moments ago you saw it here, a planned implosion in Ft. Lauderdale for Florida Power and Lights, Port Everglades Plant, a 350 foot tall smokestacks stood for 50 years. A new one -- a new $1 billion plant powered by natural gas will be built on the same site. There it goes. Almost like dominoes. It is set to open in 2016.

Obese boy scouts, those who weigh more than 100 pounds above their ideal weight are not allowed to attend this year's national jamboree. Thousands of scouts take part in that 10-day camp which kicks off today in West Virginia. It takes place every four years. Leaders say this will be the most physically demanding in its history and scouts had to meet certain fitness standards. They'll participate in activities like kayaking, rock climbing, and mountain biking.

A group of Russian women, what a beautiful sight. A really beautiful sky diving record they created a giant freefalling flower. They beat the old record of 88 people. If you notice the hole in the center of the flower formation, that was done on purpose. It was done to honor their former captain who died in a skydiving accident last year. That jump took place about 70 miles outside of Moscow. What a sight.

BOLDUAN: Amazing how they hold that together.

CUOMO: All women, amazing.

PERIERA: They're called pearls of the sky.

CUOMO: Pearls of the sky. They were high, too.

All right, about 20 minutes past 7:00 on the east. We're going to take a break. When we come back you're looking at Rachel Jeantel, the last person to hear Trayvon Martin alive. Now the prosecution's star witness is speaking out against the verdict. A CNN exclusive.

BOLDUAN: And we're going to bring you the latest on the little boy right there who was swallowed up by a sand sink hole. We'll hear from his grandfather who said it was a miracle this boy survived more than three hours buried alive.


BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY everyone. This is an update on a story we have been talking about this. It is an absolute miracle that this boy is alive. Six years old trapped inside a sand dune for nearly four hours. Doctors say the Indiana boy remains in intensive care but he is moving his arms and legs and could make a full recovery.

The latest from Pamela Brown. You've been following this from the beginning. It's good to hear even slightly good news about his condition.

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Not only did 6-year-old Nathan Woessner survive against all odds he's doing much better than expected according to his doctor I spoke with last night. Nathan's grandfather is sharing what it was like at the moment any family member would dread, when he learned his grandson had been swallowed by a sink hole.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We thought Nathan was dead.

BROWN: As 6-year-old Nathan Woessner recovers in the hospital, his grandfather Reverend Don Reul holds back tears as he recalls the terrifying phone call he got from his daughter Friday afternoon.

REV. DON REUL, GRANDFATHER OF NATHAN WOESSNER: She was hysterical and she said dad, dad, we can't find Nathan. He is, he is under the sand.

BROWN: Reul says his grandson was following his dad, Greg, on a sand dune climb on Mount Baldy Beach in Indiana Dunes National Park when suddenly he slipped into a sink hole and disappeared underneath a mound of sand.

REUL: By the time the park people got there they had dug a hole between four and five feet deep and still could not find Nathan.

BROWN: After more than three and a half agonizing hours, rescuers discovered Nathan 11 feet underneath and rushed him to the hospital in critical condition, breathing but unconscious. Four days later, Nathan is responsive and moving his limbs. He remains on a breathing tube as doctors work to clear sand out of his fragile lungs.

DR. TRACY KOOGLER, UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO MEDICAL CENTER: If he continues to recover at rate he is we expect him to be off the ventilator by the end of the week.

BROWN: Doctors say they believe an air pocket kept Nathan from suffocating. Amazingly, he's expected to make a full recovery.

REUL: In the pages of the Bible you read about all the miracles and it's exhilarating to read about those miracles in the Bible, but this one came home to us.

(END VIDEOTAPE) BROWN: Nathan's doctor told me over the phone it may be a few weeks, even months before we find out for sure whether he suffered any brain damage but it's a promising sign that he's opening his eyes and responding to simple commands. And the doctor said obviously the family is going through a tough time right now, very emotional for them but the doctor told them we're going to get through this, that he's doing better than anyone could expect after what he went through.

BOLDUAN: You were saying it was fortunate that he was with a friend at the time that he went missing because they wouldn't have been able to find him because he was completely covered by sand.

BROWN: Not only that, or know what happened to him. We were talking about this yesterday, this is a large area, a lot of kids play around this area. Had he not been with a friend, who knows what would have happened. The doctor said she believes his friend really saved his life because he could point exactly where he went down, where that sink hole was.

BOLDUAN: All right, Pamela. Keep following this.

CUOMO: Terrible because of what they knew, terrible because of what they didn't know. Imagine once the kid comes and says where he is, hours they had to wait. Few stories end this way, though. With a chance at a full recovery. It's amazing.


CUOMO: We'll take a break. When we come back on NEW DAY, this woman, Rachel Jeantel, friend of Trayvon Martin says it's all B.S., that's her comment about the not guilty verdict. We'll have a lot more from her exclusive CNN interview.

BOLDUAN: Plus an incredible story out of California, of a man who woke up with no memory of his past and can he only speak Swedish. That's later on NEW DAY.