Return to Transcripts main page


Debbie Rowe Testifies in Jackson Civil Trial; Jackson Jr. and Wife Sentencing; Hooter's Blacklists Filner; Hacking Home Automation; Number of Keyes' Victims Still Unknown; Bloody Crackdown on Morsy Supporters;

Aired August 14, 2013 - 11:00   ET


COSTELLO: Thank you for joining us today. I'm Carol Costello.

"LEGAL VIEW" with Ashleigh Banfield starts now.

BANFIELD: Hello, everyone and welcome. I'm Ashleigh Banfield. This is "THE LEGAL VIEW." It is Wednesday, August 14th. And welcome to the program where we dig into the day's top legal stories and of course, cover the day with top stories as well.

Right off the bat, a little of both -- a very big day in the Michael Jackson trial. Today on the stand, the pop star's former wife Debbie Rowe is set to appear. She's also the mother of his two oldest children and knows a lot about their family life.

There they are pictured together in better days.

Her testimony could be crucial in this extraordinarily long, wrongful death trial.

CNN's Ted Rowlands and CNN legal correspondent Jean Casarez are on this story, on the case, and they join me now live.

Ted, I want to begin with you. What can we expect to hear from her today in court?

TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, first thing we could expect, Ashleigh, is that she's not going to be very happy.

Debbie Rowe lives on a horse farm here, does not like being in the limelight, being inside this courthouse on the witness, the last place she wants to be today.

But she's a crucial witness, as you mentioned, for AEG. And what they want to pull out of her is the following. They want to establish that Michael Jackson was using drugs for decades and, specifically, he used Propofol for decades.

And she will testify that when he was on tour in Germany, she was in a hotel room on several occasions while he was receiving Propofol.

Their argument is that he did this, abused this, but didn't tell anybody, and nobody knew. Family members didn't know. But she was one of the few people that knew about Michael Jackson's addiction. That's why they're bringing her rather than other people in to establish his addictive history.

BANFIELD: And Jean Casarez, if you could jump in on this as well, they were married in '96 and they were divorced just three years later in '99.

So, yes, she had three years, but it's a long time ago. Is that significant in terms of what happened to this particular case that speaks to these particular facts?

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN LEGAL CORRESPONDENT: I think that's an excellent point right there. And I think that's what the other side is going to say.

What the defense, though, I think wants her to show and through her testimony is that she didn't have the knowledge of what was actually going on, that Michael Jackson lived this hidden life where he didn't let anyone know.

And Dr. Arnie Klein, the very famous Beverly Hills dermatologist, she worked for him. She's a nurse in all of this. And she probably is going to testify that she didn't know what they did behind closed doors with the Demerol injections.

But that could lead to impeachment, Ashleigh, because you don't have to be a nurse to look at Michael Jackson and realize that something is very, very wrong.

And it's that knowledge, the knowledge that AEG had, is where the plaintiffs say that they are now responsible for his death.

BANFIELD: So, Ted Rowlands, look, I'm counting these days, and I cannot believe how long this trial has gone on. We're at Day 69 now.

Juries are often affected by famous faces and famous names, and Debbie Rowe, even though she didn't want to be, ended up being a bit of a famous name.

But why have they held on to her testimony until so long into the process?

ROWLANDS: Well, they are establishing their case. And as you mentioned, it has been excruciating. Sixty-nine days, imagine that.

But there is a ton of money at stake and a lot of this testimony has been dry. Today will be the opposite. It should be very interesting.

And one thing, an anecdote, Alan Duke, as you know, has been in this courtroom everyday, and I talked to him yesterday and said, God, these jurors must be in hell.

And he said, no, they've created a family. The way the judge has run this, they've -- actually they come in and everybody seems to always be in a good mood and they are having, on some level, fun. Some of them may be going broke at $15 a day, but they don't have an angry jury, at least at this point, which you might think with a 69- day-and-counting trial.

BANFIELD: So when you said, "And counting," how much more are we counting? Do you have any idea if we're going to go into Christmas with this thing?

ROWLANDS: They are saying a month and a half more. There's still some physicians that need to take the stand, Rebbie's going to take the stand, and some financial folks.

So, yeah, a month and a half, believe it or not, more to go, that's the estimate.

BANFIELD: I hope you're comfy, Ted Rowlands joining us live from Los Angeles.

He's been doing a great job covering this very long trial, and Jean Casarez, as always, with your legal perspective, our attorney as well, thank you.

Former Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr., and his wife, finding out right now how much time they are both going to be spending behind bars in a prison because Jackson and his wife, Sandra, had pleaded guilty to misusing $750,000 in campaign money, spending on everything from gold- plated Rolex watch, furs, vacations, Michael Jackson memorabilia. Yes, these are connected stories.

The prosecutors in the case are recommending a four-year sentence for Mr. Jackson and an 18-month sentence for Mrs. Jackson.

You'll probably recognize that Mr. Jackson is the son of civil rights leader, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, also a congressman.

By the way, the prosecutors are hoping -- even they are asking for consecutive sentences between these two so that at least one parent is home while the other parent is serving.

We'll keep you posted on exactly what transpires in that courtroom.

And a sign of things getting real, real bad when you're blackballed by Hooter's. It did happen and it happened to the mayor of San Diego.

The restaurant, frequently criticized for objectifying women, says that Bob Filner is no longer welcome there because he's objectified women as those sexual harassment allegations just keep piling up against them.

CNN's Kyung Lah drew the lucky straw. She could have gotten the Anthony Weiner story, but she did not. She got the Filner story today.

So this is only one location, right, Kyung? At least you have a nice backdrop and you have a nice place to do this story. But as funny as it is, it's serious. And not just because it's Hooter's. There's more allegations popping up against this mayor today.

KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Certainly. And, Ashleigh, I mean, a beautiful city, a city that really wants to project a welcoming atmosphere, certainly wants people to come here has a mayor who they feel is really becoming the laughing stock of the nation.

And just to sort of put a capper on that, take a look at what we saw at a Hooter's restaurant in downtown San Diego. Hooter's known for its waitresses, you know, they dress a certain way. This is a sign that was posted on the front door.

It says, "It is imperative people have standards. The mayor of San Diego will not be served in this establishment." And my favorite line, "We believe women should be treated with respect."

Now, Hooter's corporate office did send out a brief response to CNN, saying that we support our girls.

Some context here is that this does find its way back to conservative talker Glenn Beck, a conservative talker here in San Diego, a radio host, did put this on his website, encouraging businesses to print it out and all four Hooter's restaurants -

BANFIELD: Glad you mentioned that.

LAH: -- Ashleigh, decided to go ahead --

BANFIELD: Yeah. I'm glad you mentioned that --

LAH: -- print it out and post it.

BANFIELD: -- because look what I have here, Kyung Lah.

I printed it out. It's something you can just download. Anybody can do it. Glenn Beck was asking everyone to do it, so clearly that Hooter's decided to do so.

And I know that you've been working on a lot of the questionable charges going onto his corporate card and that they are investigating that as well.

So clearly this mayor has a lot of work to do and you are not leaving that beautiful location. You're on the story until it's over.

Kyung Lah, thank you. Nice to see you. Kyung, reporting for us, live.

Coming up on this hour of the LEGAL VIEW, baby monitors, we depend on them, don't we? What if they are hacked? Because a Texas family has a terrible story about hearing a man's voice on their baby monitor saying filthy things to their two-year-old girl.

Also, a man arrested in connection with the disappearance of this beautiful girl, Alexis Murphy. This is not the first teenager, however, he is connected to.

And also, Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner bring star power to speak out publicly against the paparazzi snapping shots of their kids, and the tears flow as they bring their case to their Congress.

Plus, Hannah Anderson in her own words, answering some of the questions that people have had, that kidnapped girl taken into the woods by a family friend, speaking for the first time, you're going to hear from her, and she's got some explanations that may surprise you, coming up on CNN.

Stay with us.


BANFIELD: Welcome back to the LEGAL VIEW. I'm Ashleigh Banfield.

OK, I work on TV. And I'm very used to be surrounding by microphones and cameras. I'm used to hearing strange phantom noises in the newsroom coming over speakers.

People who don't work in this business, though, find it really weird because in the streets and stores you might expect to be recorded, you might expect to know there are cameras, but if you find that things that you use for your own safety get hacked and voices start showing up in your own house, it can be freaky.

CNN's Money correspondent, Laurie Segall, found out that hackers are so crafty that they are now getting into your child's toys and even baby monitors and, in one recent case, a very freaky person used that baby monitor to say disgusting things to a two-year-old baby.


LAURIE SEGALL, CNNMONEY CORRESPONDENT: Imagine your two-year-old daughter sleeping and an outsider watching her through the baby monitor. That's what happened to a family in Texas this weekend.

They discovered the problem when they heard a man yelling at their toddler, reading her name off of her bedroom wall.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So he said, "Wake up, Allyson, you little (inaudible)."

SEGALL: The Gilberts believe their device was hacked.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It felt like somebody broke into our house.

SEGALL: Someone kind of did, and as home automation becomes increasingly popular, there are more and more ways to hack your house and many devices that are vulnerable.

DANIEL CROWLEY, SECURITY RESEARCHER, TRUSTWAVE: I can tell the Veralight, please unlock the door.

SEGALL: That's a hacker literally unlocking your door. The smart lock is connected to a device that enables you to control your home appliances from your phone.

Daniel Crowley, a security researcher, found a flaw in that device.

CROLWY: Actually run code on the Veralight and compromise it, just set up a backdoor or I can control any device hooked up to it.

SEGALL: In a world full of these types of devices that let you do everything from flush your toilet to turn on your lights through your smartphone, a hacker can make your house feel haunted.

DAVID BRYAN, TRUSTWAVE: Basically what I can do is open up any of these rooms that have been configured or associated with this device and control them, either turning them on or turning them off.

SEGALL: Sound like something Casper would do?

These security researchers found an issue with this Insteon hub that enabled them to take control of the devices connected to it.

A similar vulnerability was found in a in children's toy. This toy rabbit has a camera that syncs with an app on a parent's mobile device, designed for keeping an eye on your kids, but someone else could, too.

JEN SAVAGE, SECURITY RESEARCHER: That traffic, I was able to capture and then pull from it a URL which was the direct video-feed and as long as the access domain was still valid, it hadn't been expired yet, I could watch that video-feed indefinitely.

SEGALL: Insteon has fixed the issue identified by these researchers.

Veralight stresses that a hacker requires an insecure Wi-Fi connection and they say the majority of their users have secure Internet connections.

The makers of the baby monitor and the toy rabbit did not immediately respond to CNN's request for comment.

As for ways to stay safe, always put a strong password on your Internet connection, keep your software up to date and never click on links from strangers.

Laurie Segall, CNNMoney, Las Vegas.


BANFIELD: And, you know, in case we didn't need to say it, it's illegal to do that stuff. You can get in pretty serious trouble.

Danny Cevallos and Paul Callan, here to talk about just how illegal, and what kinds of laws we might actually see broken in a circumstance like this.

The first thing that came across my mind was that this was an FCC violation because that's the business I work in.

Paul, is it an FCC violation? Is it something more serious than that?

PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: It could be an FCC violation, but, you know, it's the scariest thing in the world because this is -- I call it a cyber-burglary.

They broke in to the baby nursery in this house and really tried to reach out and talk to the baby, harass the baby.

I think it's child endangerment. It's a violation of a Texas hacking statute, criminal statute. A variety of laws have been violated and maybe also FCC regulations.

BANFIELD: OK, well, you mentioned the Texas statutes, and they are in Texas, but what kind of state laws are out there, generally speaking, knowing that every state is a little bit different?

Danny, what kind of state laws are out there that, if they catch this guy, and I don't know how hard it is to do that, what could he be facing?

DANNY CEVALLOS, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: The scary thing in Texas is that the applicable law transmitting images, it's like the Dharun Ravi case. The webcam spying case.

BANFIELD: Ah, New Jersey reference -- Rutgers University.

CEVALLOS: Yes. The transmission of images statute in Texas requires some sexual gratification. So that may be an element that is exceedingly difficult to prove when we don't even know who the person is yet or what they were doing at the time. Very frightening.

BANFIELD: Well, the words that he used on that little 2-year-old was bleeped out. But if it was a sexual word, would that prove that?

CEVALLOS: It could It could tend to show that, but again, the prosecution's burden is to show beyond a reasonable doubt that sexual gratification. That under present Texas law might be a little difficult to do, but between state and federal laws, there certainly are a bunch of different theories of liability that someone could proceed on. And then of course there's civil liability as well. However, without knowing who these people are, they may be attractive defendants in a civil context.

BANFIELD: Well, and I think it goes without saying that one of the important things for people who fear that they could be, you know, they exposed to this kind of crime -- passwords. It's as simple as making sure that you've got really great passwords, right?

CALLAN: Yes and people don't understand that the router that sits behind the TV that your computers run off of is also connecting to this camera in the nursery. So if you've just got a password that's easy to break, boom, you can jump in and someone's in your nursery. So you've got to be real careful about that.

BANFIELD: We can help ourselves to police against this. Just like any kind of security we take out our homes. Paul and Danny, hold that thought if you will for a moment. We've a bunch more things coming up as well on our legal program today.

The FBI had this guy on their most wanted list. His name, Israel Keyes. He admitted to killing at least 7 people but police think that he murdered even more in what they call a decade of rampage. When you think serial killer, this guy not only fits the bill, he rips it to shreds. We're going to unravel the story next.


BANFIELD: Welcome back to the LEGAL VIEW, I'm Ashleigh Banfield. A serial killer is dead, thank god. Here's the problem. His exact number of victims is still a mystery to all of us.

The FBI says that they've now been able to link at least 11 murders to a man named Israel Keyes. He killed himself last December rather than spending a whole bunch of time in prison. But before he did that, he did talk very candidly about killing those victims, giving chilling details, too.

Our Nick Paton Walsh reports.


ISRAEL KEYES, SERIAL KILLER: The only person I ever shot was Bill Currier.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody else was strangled?


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The FBI will never know if Israel Keyes enjoyed the murder of strangers, like Samantha Koenig, seen here in the Alaskan coffee shop she worked in moments before he led her away.

But they revealed he may have murdered as many as 11 people. Keyes strangled Koenig and his girlfriend, Shet (ph). He positioned her corpse to look alive and then sent a photo to her parents demanding a $30,000 ransom. It was the last arrogant and careless act of a killer police described as usually meticulous in planning. It led to his arrest and an interrogation. The scale of his decade-long rampage began to emerge -- where he buried his guns and which lakes hid victims.

KEYES: Well, those caches aren't related to any -- I mean, that one in New York was the only one directly related to a murder as far as I know. The guns -- they've been to the bottom of it. People have gone off that lake and they still haven't found their cars or anything.

UNDIENTIFIED MALE: And that's the lake?

KEYES: That's one of the lakes.

PATON WALSH: He admitted to seven other murders, including Bill and Lorraine Currier, who he shot and strangled in Vermont in 2011. Once caught, the FBI said he wanted the death penalty fast and killed himself rather than wait in jail. But not before he gave the FBI tantalizing slim hints about another possible three murders. Even his suicide note raised hopes.

JEFF BELL, FBI: I was optimistic when we found the notes crumbled up in his hands underneath his body soaked in blood. I was hopeful that those notes were going to give us leads as to who the other victims were and where their bodies could be found. I also think that he purposefully did that for us to find. However it was just some ramblings I would describe as mostly song lyrics, from what we could gather. Just gibberish.

PATON WLASH: Mysteries and pain he enjoyed taking to his grave.


BANFIELD: And Nick Paton Walsh is here with me now to talk about this. First of all, I could not believe that he was chuckling while he was talking to these investigators about, yes, I just shot one of them, I strangled the rest. It all seemed to be fun for him.

PATON WALSH (on camera): This is what's so remarkable, the investigators said, about this case, is they can't quite understand the personality trait that caused it to happen. There's this callousness you mentioned and the thrill of killing, but at the same time, as soon as he's in jail, they say he wanted to die as quickly as possible and was in fact dismayed at how long the legal process would take to kill him. So he took his own life.

BANFIELD: So that's why he killed himself, but not before making it even more difficult for investigators. What's that about?

PATON WALSH: They were chilled by that, too, in that he seemed to enjoy giving just a little bit of details to get them digging, to get them looking, but not enough to clearly solve a case. Obviously he knew everything he did and he could put many families perhaps out of the misery of not knowing but he would say a little thing about a lake here, or something about maybe guns. He buried caches of weapons that he never used for murders around the country.

BANFIELD: Not just in Alaska; he was down in mainland as well.

PATON WALSH: All over the country. And this is one thing they're releasing at the moment because the investigation, they say, has got to its end in terms of what they can do. They have these vague details; they want to put them out there and let people try and do some detective work themselves to see what else they can discover.

BANFIELD: Great work and nice to see you state-side. Welcome back. Hope you stay. Nick Paton Walsh for us today, thank you for that.

So a deadly plane crash to report to you in Alabama. And we've got some very dramatic video that shows a UPS cargo plane -- it's just a red dot and then it is a fireball as it crashes on approach to the Birmingham International Airport. The pilot and co-pilot were both killed in this crash. It happened in the predawn hours. It s an Airbus A-300 coming down on a street that runs parallel to the airport. Luckily, no one on the ground injured. No other buildings damaged as well. But what a video. What a crash image. That flight originated in Louisville, Kentucky, and the National Transportation Safety Board team was dispatched right away to investigate what is left of that wreckage.

Also, to Egypt now. A bloody and deadly crackdown happening right as we speak in the streets against supporters of the president who was ousted, Mohamed Morsy. Earlier today, security forces there raided two peaceful protests who were camping out in the city of Cairo. The Egyptian state TV is reporting that at least 95 people have been killed and the number of wounded is pretty staggering. About 500 at this point. And among the dead, we're sorry to report one of our colleagues, cameraman Mick Dean of the British-based Sky News, was killed in this story.

The government has just declared that there is a month-long state of emergency and they've omposed a curfew in Cairo and other cities across Egypt. State TV says that all violators will be jailed. So stay tuned for more violence there.

Very violent end to a hostage ordeal in Louisiana after a 12-hour standoff at a bank in the small town of St. Joseph. SWAT officers shot and killed the 20-year-old suspect after he in turn shot two of his hostages in the torso. CNN is still trying to get word of those hostages and their condition.

A New Jersey housewife who gained a lot of popularity on the reality show "The Real housewives of New Jersey," she's returning to the TV screen -- not the way she probably wants to, though. She's headed into court with her husband and, you know what, she may be a long way away from cameras for some time because prison could be in her future. That story next.


BANFIELD: Welcome back to the LEGAL VIEW, I'm Ashleigh Banfield. And this next case is what we call law and disorder. It is a real-life drama that's been playing out on the TV as well for some time because the people who are starring in this one starred in "The Real Housewives of New Jersey".

You probably know Teresa and Joe Giudice. Apparently that's the pronunciation. Some people say Giudice, but she says she likes the pronunciation Giudice. They're headed to court, though. No more fun on the TV anymore. They are headed to federal court, both expected to plead not guilty. And the charges are federal. The couple accused of, among other things, exaggerating their income on loan applications and hiding assets in a bankruptcy filing.