Return to Transcripts main page


New Report Indicates Manmade Global Warming Real; Congress Faces Government Shutdown; Sports Rivalry May Have Caused Death of Fan; Gun Malfunction Preempts Shooting; Convicted Rapist Walks after 30-Day Prison Sentence

Aired September 27, 2013 - 07:00   ET


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

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. Welcome back to NEW DAY. It's Friday, September 27th, 7:00 in the east. New this morning, a groundbreaking agreement finally reached by the U.N. Security Council forcing Syria to give up its chemical weapons. The obvious question, will it stick or fall apart? We will ask it and give you some perspective. Meanwhile, high-level talks with Iran happening for the first time in almost 35 years. They are making history, but are they making progress?


Also ahead, a mom sentenced to 25 years behind bars for shooting a warning shoot for her allegedly abusive husband. She's getting a new trial now. She tried to use originally a stand your ground defense that got national attention during the George Zimmerman trial. So why didn't Marissa Alexander get such a severe sentence, and what could this new trial for her? We'll talk with her attorney, live.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: We know fast food has long been a target of health advocates, those that advocate healthy heating. Now the biggest name of them all, stepping up, McDonald's adding even more healthier options to their menu. What will these new choices be? You'll find out, ahead.

CUOMO: But first, a new U.N. report on climate change is out this morning. It says global warming is real. It's been happening since the '50s, and you are to blame. We are covering all angles of the story. Let's start with CNN meteorologist Indra Petersons.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: That number right there that you just shared, that 95 percent we're talking about, 2013, 95 percent, not that climate change is occurring but humans are taking a huge position in causing this. Look at the difference from 2001, there were only 66 percent confident. So that is the difference here. That is the key thing they want you to take away.

Let's talk about some of the factors, warmer days and nights. Changes are occurring, they believe very likely. On top of that, they believe very likely the human contribution is the reason for that. As far as tropical storms, a lot of people are talking about this. There is still low confidence in both areas, whether or not we are seeing a change or whether or humans have anything to do with it, and also high sea level likely.

So let's talk about what's going on out there. Who is this panel? This is 1,000 experts from around the world. We're talking 39 countries here. So with that, these are the experts. The reason they're putting their support together is really so the politicians can take this information and make policies that help us moving forward.

Now, the big story I think most of us understand with global warming is, yes, carbon emissions have been going up. With that, the temperatures have been going up, about a degree Fahrenheit since the '50s there. So the other thing you have to realize is when temperatures go up, water expands. If we continue to put more carbon out there, we don't change anything, the high extreme of this, by the time we get to 2100 we'll be talking about another three feet of water. That's the extreme.

If we slow things down, stop everything completely, the carbon is out there and effects will take some time to take place, we'll still see the sea level rise. There's a lot of controversy about this chart. The reason for that -- this only accounts for the water out there. If it melts, you have the Greenland ice sheet, this could go up 20 feet. A lot of people are saying this is important information. Policymakers need this to talk about how we build and develop in the future. Three feet is nothing compared to 20 feet. That's what you'll be hearing about. This comes out officially on Monday.

BOLDUAN: A lot of people need to read through it.


BOLDUAN: The report, one of the things the report points out is that global warming could have a catastrophic effect on cities along the east coast of the United States, that includes Miami. That's where CNN meteorologist Chad Myers is this morning with more on this aspect of this groundbreaking report. Good morning, Chad.

CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning, Kate. I experienced this firsthand on Wednesday when I drove to Miami Beach. When I drove up Alton Street to 10th street, there's water in the street. I said, is there a water main break? They said this is high tide. I went, this is ground. High tide happens over at the beach, happens over on the shore. Nope, water comes up through the sewers and it comes up every time there's a big tide. So there's no denying it here in Miami, the water is going up.


MYERS: The ocean is rising quicker than in decades past, and predictions made by some research scientists make the situation sound pretty dire.

HAROLD R. WANLESS, DEPARTMENT OF GEOLOGICAL SCIENCES, UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI: By the mid-part of the century, 2050, 2060, most of the barrier islands in the world will have to be evacuated.

MYERS: And that includes Miami. It's hard to imagine iconic Miami Beach deserted, but it is obvious that rising water is already a common problem here. On a sunny day, a high tide is enough to flood some streets.

JAMES MURLEY, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, SOUTH FLORIDA REGIONAL COUNCIL: We live on lime stone. Lime stone is like porous sponge. We really can't use levees to hold back the water.

MYERS: While the city continues to find ways to deal with the excess water, many experts say there's no way to stop it.

We saw barricades and sandbags all along Alton because the water sits there during high tide. Let's put one more foot of water on top of this for just a one-foot sea level rise from here from Miami Beach. What does that look like? So you're telling me every single street that's blue will have water in it if we get a one-foot rise in sea level?


MYERS: That's a problem.

HARLEM: With the king tides, it will be higher than this. But this is seasonally showing you the places that will be affected first.

MURLEY: The important thing is, is to keep observing what's happening, to look at all the ranges and projections and then come back to the policymakers and say here's the actions you have to take.

MYERS: The southeast Florida climate change compact has been created to monitor and mitigate the harsh consequences of climate change.

MURLEY: They're not sticking their heads in the sand. They know this is a real problem.


MYERS: You can do all you want but you can't hold back Mother Nature sometimes, Chris. The water is rising. It's been rising since the '50s. They know it here. They're trying to figure out what to do. Right now they don't have an answer. It's still going up year after year after year, Chris.

CUOMO: All right, Chad, thank you for the perspective this morning.

And there is no question that the next disaster to tell you about is completely manmade, the potential government shutdown and potential economic meltdown. In just three days, funding for the federal government will dry up. In just five hours, the Senate will vote on a short-term spending bill that avoids it but also keeps Obamacare funded, setting up one final confrontation with the Republican- controlled house. Jim Acosta joining us live from the White House this morning. Good morning, Jim. JIM ACOSTA, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. As you mentioned, Senate Democrats are confident that they will get a bill that averts a government shutdown out of the Senate later on this afternoon. But the honest truth is, Chris, nobody knows what will happen after that in the House.

Over here at the White House, meanwhile, the rhetoric is getting white hot as both sides sound like they're headed towards a shutdown.


ACOSTA: Three days and counting and there's no compromise in sight that could avert a government shutdown. Right behind that September 30 shutdown deadline, the nation could go into default roughly two weeks later unless Congress raises the debt ceiling. Despite warnings from economists of a disaster, Republicans say they'll approve an increase in the debt limit only if the president agrees to their demands, like delaying Obamacare by a year and more budget cuts. But President Obama says he won't negotiate over the debt ceiling.

BARACK OBAMA, (D) PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: To suggest America not pay its bills just to try to blackmail a president into giving them some concessions on issues that have nothing to do with the budget, I mean, this is the United States of America. We're not a deadbeat nation.

ACOSTA: The White House is ratcheting up the rhetoric, accusing some Republicans of acting like terrorists.

DAN PFEIFFER, SENIOR ADVISOR TO PRESIDENT OBAMA: We are for cutting spending, we are for reforming our tax code. But we're not for negotiating with people with a bomb strapped to their chest.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: American people, this is the GOP. We have your economy.

ACOSTA: The Democratic Party is echoing that message, releasing this fake debt ceiling ransom call from the GOP.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Clock's ticking. We hope you don't make us do this.

ACOSTA: Republicans say that kind of talk is an outrage.

REP. CATHY MCMORRIS ROGERS, (R) WASHINGTON: It's completely unrealistic for the president to say that we're not going to negotiate over the debt ceiling, that he thinks somehow we should be giving him another blank check to continue these record deficits?

ACOSTA: GOP leaders point to new polls showing Americans want the president to negotiate, trading budget cuts for an increase to the debt ceiling.

REP. JOHN BOEHNER, (R) HOUSE SPEAKER: The president says I'm not going to negotiate. Well, I'm sorry, but it just doesn't work that way. REP. ERIC CANTOR, (R) HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER: We call on the president now to sit down with us, Harry Reid to sit down with us and let's solve the problem.


ACOSTA: Now CNN just got an e-mail from a house Republican leadership aide that says the Republicans in the house will not accept the bill that is planning to come out of the Senate later on this afternoon. But the same aide tells CNN that they do not have a plan for what happens next. They need to go back to their Republican caucus, go back to Republican lawmakers and see what they will accept, and, of course, craft some sort of legislation that can then go back to the Senate. But in the words of this house Republican leadership aide, this is all very fluid. So, Kate, buckle your seat belts. It will be a bumpy ride heading towards Monday.

BOLDUAN: A very long weekend for many lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

ACOSTA: That's right. Us, too.

BOLDUAN: Which also means you. Jim, thank you so much.

It's also been an important day at the United Nations. Members of the U.N. Security Council could vote today on a resolution calling on Syria to eliminate all nuclear weapons. The five permanent council members have already agreed to the deal. And secretary of state John Kerry met with his Iranian counterpart in an historic meeting between the two countries. Both sides walked away with renewed focus on nuclear weapons. Chief national security correspondent Jim Sciutto has more on what all of this means, a lot of big progress potentially on two fronts here, Jim.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: No question, Kate. In a single day at the U.N., really surprising progress, two of the U.S.'s most intractable challenges in the Middle East, Syria and Iran. First, Iran, the highest level talks between U.S. and Iranian officials in 34 years. Secretary Kerry and the foreign minister Zarif sitting right next to each other discussing Iran's nuclear program. They also had a private meeting on the sidelines of that larger meeting. Secretary Kerry coming out of it said, quote, "One meeting and a change in tone are not enough." But he said the Iranians have put possibilities on the table which the Iranians say they hope to implement within a year, and now the U.S. is exploring those possibilities. They'll meet again in Geneva next month.

Now, Syria, two weeks after Secretary Kerry first floated the idea, the U.S. and Russia reached an agreement on the U.N. resolution governing the complete elimination of Syria's chemical weapons. The Security Council will vote as soon as tonight. Key elements of that draft, Syria legally obligated to allow in teams that will remove and destroy its weapons. But the question is, enforcement. If they don't comply to impose sanctions, including military action, the U.S. would have to come back to the U.N. Security Council for another vote and, Chris, that's a place where Russia would certainly use its veto, at least regarding military action. So a lot of steps to go through to see how this is implemented.

CUOMO: With some interesting first ones taken. Jim Sciutto, thank you very much for the reporting this morning.

Question for you, did a sports rivalry lead to murder? San Francisco police say it may have. A 24-year-old Dodgers fan was stabbed to death following a Giants-Dodgers game Wednesday. And now, one Giants fan has been arrested. The question is, what was his motive? CNN's Dan Simon reports.


DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Fan rivalries can be intense, leading to all-out brawls like this one at a San Francisco 49ers/Oakland Raiders game. And men aren't the only ones fighting. This happened at an L.A. Clippers/Utah Jazz basketball game. The latest violence centers around the storied baseball rivalry between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants. And this time, it turned deadly.

DENNIS CLARK, WITNESS: I just saw the swinging and the yelling. Just like arms flying everywhere. The police started showing up. I looked and saw a person laying on the ground.

SIMON: Police say it happened a few hours after Wednesday night's game a few blocks from the ballpark. A 24-year-old, Jonathan Denver, was stabbed and killed wearing Dodgers clothes. This picture taken at the game with his father, a Dodgers security guard.

CHIEF GREG SUHR, SAN FRANCISCO POLICE DEPARTMENT: The fact that anybody got in any sort of a beef over the Giants and Dodgers and somebody lost their life, it's just senseless.

SIMON: A 21-year-old suspect was arrested and charged with homicide. Investigators say he was part of a group that wasn't even at the game. It's not clear yet how the fight started.

Two years ago, the rivalry led to the beating of a 42-year-old paramedic and father. Giants fan Bryan Stowe was critically injured when he was attacked by two Dodgers fans. He suffered brain damage and will never fully recover.

Experts say fights like this are usually fueled by alcohol.

DR. RAMANI DURVASULA, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: When you combine passion for your sports team, too much to drink and too many people, you've got a recipe for disaster.

SIMON: San Francisco's police chief has a message for fans everywhere.

SUHR: Just be respectful of each other when you go to these games. And remember, it's a game.

SIMON: Dan Simon, CNN, San Francisco.

(END VIDEOTAPE) CUOMO: Now, the family of Bryan Stow is speaking out about the latest violence. His sister Bonnie released this statement, "We are saddened by this senseless killing and our thoughts and prayers go out to the victim's family."

BOLDUAN: There's a lot of other news developing at this very hour, so let's go to Michaela for the latest hours.

PEREIRA: Here are your headlines at this hour. Officials in Kenya may have lucked out in finding a suspect at the mall massacre. A man acting like a victim dropped a machine gun magazine during the evacuation. He is now being held at a military air base.

In the meantime Interpol intensifying the search for this woman, Samantha Lewthwaite, known as the white widow. The Britain native is wanted in connection with the 2011 terror plot. It's unclear if she is the woman officials say was involved in the Kenya mall massacre.

NSA analysts caught red handed misusing the agency's surveillance power, including spying on their significant others and love interests. The agency's inspector general says since 2003 there have been a dozen substantial instances when agency employees were caught spying on spouses and on flames.

After five months of testimony, the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial is finally in the hands of a jury. Deliberations began Thursday, continue at noon eastern today. The singer's family is suing concert promoter AEG Live for billions of dollars, claiming the concert promoter negligently hired Dr. Conrad Murray and is liable for Michael Jackson's death.

It may not be long before you're allowed to use those smartphones, tablets, and other electronic devices on airplanes during takeoff and landing. An advisory committee will be making that recommendation to the FAA next week. They say passengers should be able to read e-books, play music and game, and watch movies during takeoff and landing, although some devices would have to switched to airplane mode.

Got to show you this video. Some good Samaritans leaping into action when a man fell off a subway platform in Boston onto the tracks below. Within 20 seconds, these heroes just jump onto the tracks and pulled the unconscious man to safety. They had to grab the man and avoid touching that dangerous third rail, which carries 600 volts of electricity. That man was taken to Mass General Hospital. He has a minor head injury, and what's amazing police say he cannot remember a thing.

BOLDUAN: What was going on there?

PEREIRA: It's awful to see that happen.

CUOMO: He's not going to want to remember it.

PEREIRA: No, thankfully.

CUOMO: He's lucky those guys jumped in there. PEREIRA. No, thankfully.

CUOMO: Put those guys at risk. He didn't fall in, it looked like he was drunk and stumbling around.

PEREIRA: Or something, or maybe he had a medical emergency.

CUOMO: We'll find out. Thank God they did what they did.


CUOMO: It's being called the miracle at McDonald's. A man walks into a crowded McDonald's in Ft. Worth, Texas, pulls a gun. Another bloody massacre could be right there in the making. Not this time. John Berman is here to tell us what happened or really what didn't happen.

BERMAN: It might have been a miracle, all right. If so, it was a miraculous malfunction. A gun that appears to fail to go off repeatedly, that might be the only reason that countless people in Texas are alive this morning.


BERMAN: It was a heart-stopping scene on Tuesday night. According to authorities and CNN affiliate WFAA, this man, 24-year-old Justin Joseph walked into a Ft. Worth, Texas McDonald's with a gun.

Police say around 9:00 p.m., Joseph approached the counter asking for a cup, but seconds later pulled out a gun, aiming at innocent employees and families.

DAVIDGE ARMSTRONG, MCDONALD'S CUSTOMER: When I was seeing the guy pull a pistol out, he was yelling give me your keys and your money, I could hear the gun clicking. He was pulling the trigger. I was able to pin him up against the wall.

BERMAN: Miraculously, though, the gun wouldn't fire. It simply clicked.

ARMSTRONG: Pulling the trigger towards me but still, it just clicking.

BERMAN: Armstrong tackled the would-be gunman but Joseph wrestled free and walked out, and then the story gets even more unbelievable.

Police say Joseph successfully fired off at least one shot outside before walking back into the McDonald's to finish what he'd started. The surveillance video appears to show him aiming his gun at Armstrong and others who were hiding in the back of the restaurant. Police say Joseph pulled the trigger again and, again, it simply clicked. The gun jammed. Sparing lives.

SGT. JOE LOUGHMAN, FORT WORTH POLICE DEPT.: I've never seen a video like this before. I would say he went in there with intent to kill somebody.

BERMAN: A short time later, Joseph was arrested and now faces charges of aggravated robbery. What Armstrong has taken from this incredibly close call?

ARMSTRONG: God, God, that's all it was, God. That's all it could have been, an angel over me.


BERMAN: So, in an interview with a local affiliate, Joseph contended that he never meant to hurt anyone though I have to say looking at that video, it's hard to see that. He pulled that trigger a lot of times. There were a lot of clicks from that gun.

BOLDUAN: Obviously that begs the question, if you weren't intending to hurt anyone, what were you doing with a gun in a McDonald's.

BERMAN: Pulling the trigger repeatedly.

CUOMO: I think this statement goes more to what we'll probably discover as some type of mental illness going on; not to excuse the actions, but to explain them.

BERMAN: Terrifying for all the people in that restaurant.

CUOMO: Terrible.

BOLDUAN: Thanks so much, John.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, a former Montana teacher who was convicted of raping a 14-year-old student is out of jail after serving just 30 days behind bars, but his legal troubles may not be over. Find out why.

CUOMO: And a Florida woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing a warning shot. She's getting another chance to make her case, but with a key legal argument off the table. You know it as stand your ground. Can she make the case this time? We'll take you through it. Her attorney is here.


CUOMO: Welcome back to NEW DAY. After just one month in prison, the former Montana teacher convicted of raping a 14-year-old student is free now. People lashed out at that sentence, calling it just a slap on the wrist, also saying the judge who issued it should be fired.

CNN's Kyung Lah is live in Billings, Montana with the latest. You've been following this from the beginning, Kyung. Where do things go from here?

KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kate, prosecutors are hoping to return him to jail by appealing to a higher court, but until all that happens, for now, Stacey Rambold, waking up in his own bed this morning, the first time in a month, that's how long his controversial sentence was, and everywhere he went yesterday, cameras were following him.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) KYUNG LAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Stacey Rambold sped out of state prison a free man, checking in with his parole officer.

(on camera): Hi, Stacey. Hi, I'm Kyung Lah from CNN. Can I ask you a few questions? Are you checking in with your parole officer?

(voice-over): He dashed in. His head down. A short time later --

(on camera): Hey, Stacey. Can I talk to you a little longer, sir? Talking about your one-month sentence?

(voice-over): Left for home.

The former teacher not answering any questions from CNN about his one- month jail sentence for raping his 14-year-old student Cherice Morales. Rambold was arrested in 2008, and as he awaited trial, his young victim was tormented by other students who bullied her for being a rape victim.

And before Rambold's case was heard, Cherice Morales took her own life.

To add insult to injury, the man who was supposed to represent justice, Judge Todd Baugh, then sentenced Rambold to just one month behind bars, saying the teenage victim seemed older than her chronological age, and was as much in control as the then 49-year-old Rambold.

(on camera): Hi, I'm Kyung Lah -

(voice-over): The judge who has also repeatedly ducked CNN's questions has since admitted the sentence may have been illegal. State laws mandate a two-year minimum for this crime.

Rambold is now a registered sex offender and he faces this long list of probation and parole conditions, 59 of them to be exact. He can't be around children, go to a bar, get on the Internet or even open up a checking account. And what's more, this may not be the end of his legal story.

Prosecutors have filed an appeal with the state Supreme Court and hope to put him back behind bars.

MARIAN BRADLEY, NOW MONTANA: I see hope on the horizon. I think as long as we know that it's happening, we can acknowledge it. And we can do something to change it.

LAH: Hoping to finally find justice that has so far failed Cherice Morales.


LAH: That appeal won't take -- will happen at a slower pace than at least this community would like. Kate and Chris, it could take 6 to 18 months before it is heard. Chris, Kate? BOLDUAN: As you mentioned, Kyung, it's a small community there and it has been rocked by this sentence and all of the attention on it. Thanks so much.

CUOMO: Another case when we come back on NEW DAY, that has generated a lot of outrage for different reasons. The woman you're looking at right there said she was afraid she was going to be beat up by a spouse who had beaten her up in the past. She fired a warning shot. No one was injured, 20 years, the sentence. Now she's getting a chance for a new trial. We'll take you through it.

BOLDUAN: How about this one? How about a salad instead of those fries? It's not just a personal choice anymore. It seems it may be good business. McDonald's is revamping its menu. We'll tell you how.

CUOMO: This is one of the craziest things I've ever heard you say.



ANNOUNCER: You're watching new day with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan and Michaela Pereira.

BOLDUAN: Happy Friday, everyone. Welcome back to NEW DAY. It is Friday, September 27th. Let's get straight to Michaela for the top news right now.

PEREIRA: Here's your headlines at this hour. Power plants, greenhouse gases, all man-made all part of the primary source of climate change, and no stopping the trends in sight.