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Flash Flooding Fears; Crisis in Egypt; "Blade Runner" in Court; A-Rod Under Attack; Epic Wildfire Fight; Teen Attacked by Shark; Asking for Privacy; Bolt Sprints into History; Girl Survives Bear Mauling; New Inquiry into Princess Di's Death

Aired August 19, 2013 - 06:00   ET



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is probably the worst I've seen it. It didn't even get that heavy during Katrina.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Flood watch. Parts of the Southeast underwater. Neighborhoods submerged, now more rain is coming today as riptides make the coast dangerous and deadly.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Direct hit. Alex Rodriguez get drilled by a Red Sox pitcher. The wild scene last night as he and his lawyer now come out swinging.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Bear fears. Five bear attacks in the past week. A 12-year-old plays dead to survive while a man in Alaska waits 36 hours to be rescued after being attacked. We have the very latest.

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.

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


CUOMO: Good morning, everybody. It's Monday. I wish you a very good week here on NEW DAY. August 19thd, 6:00 in the East. I'm Chris Cuomo.

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

PEREIRA: Good morning.

BOLDUAN: Good morning. Coming up this morning, we have two huge stories involving Britain's royal family. There's a new twist in the investigation into Princess Diana's death. Police now looking into claims that British Special Forces were somehow involved in her death. New conspiracy theories have arrived, so just how real is this information? We're going to dig into it.

CUOMO: Plus, if you are waiting for the scoop on the newest Royal parents wait no more. Prince William is talking for the first time since becoming a dad and he is only talking to CNN's Max Foster. That's right. The stress of being a new father, changing diapers, figuring out the car seat, did he practice? Stuff we all do, but it is all more interesting when a future king does it.

PEREIRA: Exactly. Plus a really dramatic scene from court this morning, Oscar Pistorius, the man called, "Bladerunner" in court crying. He was officially indicted today for the murder of his girlfriend. We'll bring you a live report coming up.

CUOMO: Up first this morning though, it is no longer just weather. The southeast is bracing for potentially deadly floods there, a stalled system stretching from the gulf all the way to the Carolinas threatening to bring even more heavy rain to a region that is already swamped. That means these flash floods keep coming. People need to know what is on the way. Indra Petersons is tracking the latest for us. Good morning, Indra.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning. People complaining in the northeast about sprinkles and I have to remind them. We are talking about 10 to 15 inches above average into the southeast. At this point there is nowhere else for the rain to go.


PETERSONS (voice-over): Heavy rain and high winds battered much of the southeast this weekend bringing flash floods and record rainfall. Check out what members of one church in Gulfport saw after their Sunday service, waist-deep water covering their car doors. A foot of rain fell in less than an hour. Business owners along Highway 49 found water rushing into their stores.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It didn't get that heavy during Katrina.

PETERSONS: These stranded motorists in Biloxi, Mississippi were caught off guard. The fire department rushed in to help dozens of stalled cars. A large swath of tropical moisture has drenched much of the region from the gulf coast to the Carolinas. In Miami Beach, an elderly couple was killed while swimming on Sunday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They were in cardiac arrest when fire rescue arrived. We worked them all the way hospital of Mt. Sinai where they have been pronounced dead.

PETERSONS (voice-over): And they weren't alone. Miami Beach Ocean Rescue came to the aid of at least 50 swimmers caught in the rough surf.


PETERSONS: All right, here's a look at the water vapor loop starting on Friday you will notice all of that moisture around the Yucatan Peninsula. This tropical moisture only moved closer each day and it is inundating the area with rain since the entire week. We are talking about places that are 10 to 15 inches above average, 20 to 30 inches of rain since just June into the southeast. So what's going on? Still it is staying there. All of that moisture continues to go all the way into the Carolinas today. More rain is in the forecast. Here is how above average they are, making about 15 inches above average. Pensacola almost 15 inches above average from just June here.

This is what they saw just over the weekend, 9.46 inches in Panama City. Look at this, anywhere from 3 to even 10 inches of rain across the area throughout the weekend. Of course, we are talking about flooding concerns. As we go forward in time from 3 to 5 inches of additional rain here through about Thursday.

BOLDUAN: It just keeps coming. All right, Indra, thanks so much.

Let's move overseas now where overnight, at least 25 Egyptian soldiers were killed in the latest round of violence rattling that country. Their vehicle was attacked in the peninsula. The bloody crackdown has left nearly 1,000 people dead this morning and this as a growing number of lawmakers are calling for an end to the $1.5 billion in U.S. aid given to Egypt each year.

CNN's Reza Sayah has been following all the latest development from Cairo. Good morning, Reza.

REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Kate. We haven't seen any wide spread street demonstrations and street violence over the past 48 hours, but we are still seeing awful incidents of bloodshed in other forms that signaled this conflict as far from over. As you mentioned, at least 24 Egyptian soldiers killed this morning when armed militants attacked their convoy in the northern Sinai (inaudible).

This is a region that has been plagued with militancy. The government has repeatedly suggested that these attacks are being carried out by elements linked to the Muslim Brotherhood. Yesterday, a bizarre 38 detainees killed, most of them supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood. State media was reporting that they were among 600 prisoners being transported to a prison in Cairo.

Some accounts say they tried to escape. Other accounts say they took a police officer hostage. Whatever happened at some point someone shot tear gas into the police van choking these 38 detainees. No answers as to why anyone would shoot tear gas into this police van. It is unlikely we will have an investigation to figure out what happened -- Chris.

CUOMO: All right, Reza, thank you very much for the reporting. Please stay safe over there, my friend.

All right, another story for you this morning, Olympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius spotted crying in the courtroom today just moments before he was shown his indictment on murder charges. The big crime premeditated murder in the fatal shooting of his girlfriend, model, Reeva Steenkamp. The trial will begin in March, but the analysis begins right now.

Let's go to CNN's Robyn Curnow live in Pretoria, South Africa. Good morning, Robyn.

ROBYN CURNOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, there. Good morning. It was a short appearance by Oscar Pistorius in this court behind me, but it was dramatic. When he walked into the court he faced a wall, a barrage of cameras. He turned his back on them looking for support and comfort from his family who were in the seats behind. For a while he sat and held hands and prayed with his brother and his sister. Just a meter away from that friends of Reeva Steenkamp's were there as well also holding each other. Remember, of course, today would have been Reeva Steenkamp's 30th birthday.

CUOMO: Very poignant reminder there about her birthday, Robyn, obviously his emotion in the courtroom basically meaningless, but in the court of public opinion I bet it is having some kind of impact. What is the feel on the streets there about what people think about the charges?

CURNOW: You know, I think people in South Africa are still coming to terms that their hero, this golden boy, has fallen so dramatically. There is still support for him, I think, from many people who understand with a country with such a high crime rate understand that level of fear and paranoia that might feel in the middle of the night by an intruder coming into your bedroom.

So I think he might have some supporters on that level. As for those who say, listen, Reeva Steenkamp is dead whether he murdered her, whether it was planned or premeditated or whether it was spontaneous, the fact is and a lot of people are very, very sad about that. They don't want her to be forgotten.

And those friends sitting a meter from Oscar Pistorius in court today issued a statement. They say she will never be forgotten today. That is the impression she made in all those around her will live forever. So I think a lot of people very empathetic in fact with both sides here. All in all this is a tragic story for both families.

CUOMO: Shaping up to be a very big trial. Robyn Curnow, thank you very much for the latest.

CURNOW: Absolutely.

BOLDUAN: And they call him a lightning rod for a reason it appears. In the last 24 hours Alex Rodriguez has been attacked on two fronts. He was hit by a pitch in a game last night against the Yankee's most hated rival, the Boston Red Sox. That nearly triggered a brawl. Just earlier, A-Rod drew fire from another hated rival it appears, his own general manager. Andy Scholes live from the CNN Center for us this morning. It's quite a seen at Fenway Park last night, Andy.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it sure was, Kate. You know, the tension between the Yankees and A-Rod seems to grow every day. Yesterday, Yankee's GM Brian Cashman spoke about the A-Rod drama. Cashman called A-Rod a liar and he said the environment he has created is unlike anything he has seen, but despite all the distractions A-Rod continues to play and he is actually playing pretty well.


SCHOLES (voice-over): Alex Rodriguez stepped up to the plate last night and took another direct hit igniting an explosive exchange between Yanks' manager. The Red Sox fans not surprisingly loved it. As the animosity surrounding the slugger gets even more heated A-Rod has a new lawyer and a new line of attack accusing the Yankees of withholding medical information on him leading to him injured when he shouldn't have.

The Yankees deny it with team president telling him to, quote, "put up or shutup" if he has evidence. At stake, around $100 million left on its contract. Over the weekend another hit, a "60 Minutes" news report that claims members of the inner circle named names accusing other players of using performance enhancing drugs during the investigation into A-Rod.

He says those claims are not true. In the meantime, four innings later in last night's game A-Rod crushed his 649th career homer setting off an angrier scene in the Fenway stands.


SCHOLES: This is the second time A-Rod has been hit in the game this season. Each time the opposing fans led out a big old cheer and multiple players have gone on record saying they aren't happy that A- Rod is playing right now. So this maybe a thing A-Rod being hit is something that we can see continued throughout the rest of the season.

BOLDUAN: That's no way to play that's for sure, but there are a lot of people with differing opinions on how A-Rod is playing.

CUOMO: Well, it is the Red Sox. Let's not forgot.


CUOMO: No accident here. That is how they play, those people. A lot of other news this morning so let's get to it with Michaela.

PEREIRA: All right, good morning, guys. Good morning to you at home. Now to the massive wildfire fight in the western U.S. Firefighters there are battling dozens of fires at least nine of them in Idaho. One of them the Beaver Creek fire so far consumed more than 100,000 acres. It is just at 9 percent containment. Mandatory evacuation orders growing from 1,600 homes to more than 2,200 homes over the weekend.

A 16-year-old surfer recovering from puncture wounds to his legs this morning after being attacked by an eight foot gray shark in Hawaii. The teen was airlifted out of the area to a medical center. It is the ninth reported shark attack this year in Hawaii and the fourth just this month. Witnesses say the shark bit the young victim across both legs. No word on the surfer's condition this morning.

The family of Hannah Anderson asking for privacy as they prepare for the funerals of her mother and brother this week. Family representative Stacy Hash issued a statement to the media on Sunday quote, "I ask that you extend an increase level of respect to the entire Anderson family recognizing their need for privacy at this most difficult time." As you recall Hannah was rescued a week ago from the Idaho wilderness after she was kidnapped by family friend James DiMaggio.

Bradley Manning could find out today just how long he'll be behind bars. The former army intelligence analyst is facing 90 years in prison for leaking hundreds of thousands of classified U.S. documents to Wikileaks. The judge in his case could announce her decision as early as this morning.

Usain Bolt sprinting into the record books, the Jamaican track star completing a triple gold medal performance at the World Track Championship in Moscow, that makes him the most decorated athlete in world championship history moving past Carl Lewis with eight gold medals and two silvers. Is he satisfied? Bolt says his goal moving forward is to continue dominating, a sentiment that I know Chris Cuomo personally uses as his own motivation.

CUOMO: The interesting thing about speed is it transcends sport. Whether you're into track and field or any kind of sport, just watching people move at a speed that we think is ever pushing the limits of humanity. We have never seen a guy like this cat. He is taller than he is supposed to be. He beats people by margins. He is always slowing down at the finish line.

PEREIRA: He is a showman, too. He puts spice into the crowd.

CUOMO: I watched a documentary about him and I was shocked by how hard he works. Then you realize there are no accidents.

PEREIRA: He makes it look easy on the track, right?

CUOMO: And the guy was finishing second. Chris Gatling is one of the best sprinters in American history. Faster than my car so my father says that. I said you don't drive.

Anyway, moving on to another story you need to hear about this morning, a harrowing story out of Michigan, a 12-year-old girl chased and mauled by a bear. Luckily she is recovering this morning, but she is not alone. Bear attacks are on the rise nationwide. The questions for us are obvious, why and what can be done about it?

CNN's Zoraida Sambolin joins us now with much more on that. Good morning.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Kind of crazy and scary, I got to tell you. So according to Michigan's Department of Natural Resources the state has an estimated bear population of 8,000 to 10,000. But only has about two bear human encounters per year. So what is behind the increase in attacks?


ELIZABETH WETHERELL, MOTHER OF BEAR ATACK VICTIM (via telephone): A bear just kind of came out of nowhere, knocked her to the ground. She tried to get up and the bear came back at her again.

SAMBOLIN (voice-over): A mother's chilling account of how a black bear mauled her 12-year-old daughter, Abegail Wetherell, leaving deep gashes on her thigh. To survive she relied on instinct.

WETHERELL: She decided to lay there and play dead.

SAMBOLIN: This attack is the latest of a string of bear maulings across the country. At least five attacks in the past week.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The reason why we are having bear attacks now is because we have vacationers out in the area where bears live. They are out forging and looking for food.

SAMBOLIN: Last week a brown bear mauled a hunter in the northern Alaskan wilderness. He survived a harrowing 36 hours until the Air National Guard spotted him using night vision goggles and air lifting him to safety. From the back woods to the back patio, bear encounters causing people's jaws to drop. A black bear tore through the Madonna family's screen door in Maples, Florida taking an hour long nap on their veranda.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: He was sleeping.

ALICE MACDONOUGH, BEAR NAPPED IN HOUSE: This is the closest I have ever come to a bear let alone a 7 to 8 foot bear sitting on my back porch.

SAMBOLIN: A similar scene in Colorado last month where a bear roamed into a bar filled with customers. From bar hopping to run-ins on the street there is no doubt this is bear country.

TOM STALF, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF COLUMBUS ZOO: As we move out of the cities and into the country we are going to cross paths with different types of animals.


SAMBOLIN: That's true. It's their environment. So this morning wild life officials in Michigan are running tests on a bear they killed in order to see if it is the same one that mauled Abby Wetherell on Thursday evening. The bear was killed about 2 miles from the area where Wetherell was attacked according to Michigan's Department of Natural Resources.

I have to tell you that her family says they do not believe it is the same bear because they say the one that they killed was a much larger bear and they think the bear that went after her was much smaller. So it could still be on the loose.

And I know you were mentioning that you're from Canada. Everybody from Canada has a bear story. So one of the things they said was she laid down when she was mauled and she played dead. But they say don't do that. What you want to do is become bigger and greater than the bear. Is that true? PEREIRA: Well, I've heard both stories. I have an account of a friend of mine's father-in-law played dead and he survived. He was attacked by a grizzly. But it swiped him across the back of the head. I mean, it was a horrifying story.

CUOMO: Can you tell the story about how you killed the grisly with a No. 2 pencil?

BOLDUAN: She was saving that one for later.

PEREIRA: That is not true.


BOLDUAN: Zoraida, we apologize for digressing.


SAMBOLIN: I've got to tell you one last thing about this little girl because I thought it was incredible. To the 12 year old, she's upset because she's going to miss her soccer game and she's letting her team down. Can you believe that?

BOLDUAN: That's exactly how a 12-year-old would react to it. I love that.

PEREIRA: That's a good teammate there.

CUOMO: Thankful that's her reaction. You get out of a bear attack and you are frustrated about what you're going to miss.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, Zoraida.

CUOMO: Appreciate that. Coming up on NEW DAY, we're going to examine an explosive suggestion. Was Princess Diana murdered? New information coming to light that has Scotland Yard scrambling. We'll tell you about it.

BOLDUAN: And concerns about safety front and center this morning following the death of a high school football star in Georgia. Is the game getting too dangerous?


CUOMO: Welcome back to NEW DAY, everybody. It is a horrible question to even ask but we have heard it before. Was Princess Diana murdered? Now, this isn't speculation about the actions of the media chasing her on that fateful night but something far darker. New and disturbing information about her death is giving new light to conspiracy theories that continue to swirl around that 1997 crash. British police are taking this evidence very seriously.

CNN's Erin McLaughlin is at Scotland Yard with much more. Good morning, Erin.

ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. Scotland Yard says this is the first time since that exhaustive inquest into the death of Princess Diana concluded in 2008 that they are assessing new information which has sent the British press and social media buzzing.


MCLAUGHLIN (voice-over): New questions launched by a shocking new allegation claiming British special forces were behind the deaths of Princess Diana and her boyfriend, Dodi Fayed. It's the latest conspiracy theory about Diana's death, coming almost 16 years after that horrific middle-of-the-night car crash, a high speed paparazzi chase through a tunnel in Paris with a deadly end.

Scotland Yard put out a statement saying it is, quote, "scoping new information, assessing its relevance and credibility." According to the British newspaper, "The Sunday People", the claim surfaced in a seven page letter written by the estranged in-laws of an unidentified special forces sniper. In a handwritten letter, they allege their former son-in-law boasted that the British S.A.S. was behind the deaths.

MARK SAUNDERS, ROYAL ANALYST: People don't want to believe that somebody as loved as Princess Diana can just die in a road accident. It just isn't enough. They want more.

MCLAUGHLIN: Scotland Yard has made it clear -- for the moment the new claims will not reopen the exhaustive investigation which concluded that Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed were killed by the gross negligence of their driver and the paparazzi chasing them that night.

Buckingham Palace is not commenting but those who know the royal family have been quick to dismiss the claim.

DICKIE ARBITER, FMR. ROYAL FAMILY PRESS SECRETARY: There's not a lot they can do about it. There will always be people coming up with conspiracy theories and the best thing they can do is just get on with their lives in a normal way.


MCLAUGHLIN: The 16th anniversary of Princess Diana's death is just days away. For better or for worse, this information raising new questions as to what exactly happened that tragic night in August that so many people thought had been put to rest. Chris.

CUOMO: All right, Erin, but at least it's getting the attention that it demands and I appreciate the reporting this morning.

We have a second big royal story that we're going to be telling you about, a global event we've all been waiting for. Prince William speaking out for the first time since becoming a father, only with CNN's Max Foster. It's coming up later in the show. Don't miss it.

BOLDUAN: You don't want to miss that. But coming up next on NEW DAY, tragedy on the field. A high school football star from Georgia killed during a scrimmage renewing questions -- is the game getting too fast, too violent, and too dangerous for our kids?

CUOMO: And what's going on with Chris Christie? Everything the New Jersey governor does and says seems to mean something to the political media about 2016. The latest, vetoing an assault weapon ban he originally supported. What does it mean?

Your NEW DAY political gut check next.