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EARLY START WITH JOHN BERMAN AND ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN

Costa Concordia Trial Resumes; Michael Jackson's Doctor Freed; Will Russia Be Ready?

Aired October 28, 2013 - 05:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): A desperate search is under way. A bold and elaborate escape. Four inmates beat the system. They crawled their way out of an Oklahoma prison. They're on the run this morning and they are considered armed and dangerous.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): The NSA spying scandal consuming the White House. The big question this morning, when did the president find out about the agency eavesdropping on foreign leaders? The answer to this question may surprise you.

SAMBOLIN: And Dr. Conrad Murray, he is a free man this morning. Why Michael Jackson's former physician was relieved halfway through his prison term.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN (on-camera): Welcome back to EARLY START, everyone. It is great to see you this Monday. I'm John Berman.

SAMBOLIN (on-camera): And I'm Zoraida Sambolin. Nice to have you with us. Thirty-two minutes past the hour.

Authorities in Oklahoma are looking for four inmates who made a very daring escape from behind bars. The men got out of the Caddo County Jail through a trap door above the shower. This was early Sunday morning. They had to crawl through a pipe and knock down part of a wall in order to get out of that facility. The four had been sentenced for unrelated crimes, including weapons, drugs, and burglary offenses.

BERMAN: New information from the Edward Snowden leaks revealing more spying than previously known on some U.S. allies. There are reports now that the NSA was eavesdropping on German chancellor, Angela Merkel, and there is one media report that the president knew about it back in 2010. Reports also say the NSA listened to tens of millions of phone calls in Spain.

However, "The Wall Street Journal" is reporting this morning the NSA claims it ended the program used to spy on Merkel after President Obama was made aware of it this summer. Also in this "Wall Street Journal" report, very key, the Obama administration making claims that President Obama was not told about spying on foreign leaders until five years into the program. The White House vehemently denying this report from a German paper that the president was told in 2010 and now the question is how could this spying operation go on without the president knowing?

SAMBOLIN: Without the president knowing, exactly.

Thirty-three minutes past the hour. Breaking overnight, the Israeli air force launching an air strike in the Gaza strip. We're told they targeted two rocket launching squads that may be responsible for an attack on Southern Israel earlier this morning. Two rockets were fired across the border. One of them intercepted by Israel's iron dome defense system. Jerusalem is blaming the attack on Hamas. No one was hurt.

He has been called the most hated man in Italy. This morning, the manslaughter trial of the Costa Concordia captain resumes 20 months after his cruise ship struck a reef and cap-sized off a tiny Italian island. Barbie Nadeau tracking the latest developments for us from Rome this morning. What is the latest, Barbie?

BARBIE NADEAU, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this morning, you know, we're going to hear some very crucial testimony against Captain Schetinno. This morning, the first witness is someone who shadowed the captain as an officer in training. He spent time with him on the bridge. He's expected to testify that the captain had absolutely no control whatsoever of the situation both during the accident and especially during the evacuation.

Of course, 32 people who died during the accident did not die on impact. They died getting off the ship. So, in order to prove manslaughter, they've got to prove that the captain did not do a good job in evacuating all of those passengers. Then, we're expected to hear later today or tomorrow to hear some very colorful testimony.

There is a Maldivian ballerina who was the captain's alleged lover at the time who was also on the bridge. And the captain, a retired sea captain who was on the island of Giglio who the captain was trying to -- Captain Schettino was trying to impress by going so close to that island which, of course, ended very fatally for some and tragically for many more.

So, the next few days of testimony are crucial in building a case against the captain for manslaughter, for abandoning ship, and for causing a maritime disaster, John.

BERMAN: Case that is gripping all of Italy and being watched all around the world. Barbie Nadeau in Rome for us this morning. Thank you so much.

SAMBOLIN: A trial begins today for eight people charged in a phone hacking scandal at a British tabloid. Former "News of the World" executive, Rebekah Brooks, and others allegedly intercepted voice mails of celebrities, politicians, and other public figures including a missing British girl.

Among the others charges are Brook's husband and the former communications director for British Prime Minister, David Cameron. All have pleaded not guilty. More than a hundred witnesses are expected to testify as well. This trial could last until Easter.

BERMAN: All right. A powerful storm battering Great Britain this morning. Damaging winds, heavy rain, hitting the UK overnight. Parts of Southern England and Wales getting 80-mile-per-hour wind gusts. I don't think we usually see that there. Flooding and downed trees a major problem.

Tens of thousands of homes are without power this morning. At least one person is missing, a teenage boy who was swept out to sea. Sounds like a mess there. Let's get a check of how things are going here. Indra Petersons with a look of the weather.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes. A little bit milder for us today. Temperature is going to be more average, but it's not going to last longer. It's actually another cold front is expected to make its way through. So, we will see temperatures drop again into the mid- Atlantic and northeast overnight tonight in through tomorrow. Very dry so not really looking for any rain out of that system, but you can kind of see here New York looking for 62 today.

By tomorrow, dropping down to 53. Same with Boston, you'll drop about 10 degrees there. If you're in Buffalo, you're going to stay already in the 40s as that cold front is pretty much already in the region there, but we're going to have a pattern shift, that cold air that's been in the northeast where you're start -- going to start to get a little bit warmer. And meanwhile, that cold air is dipping down into the west. So kind of a pattern shift there.

What we're going to be looking at is for some heavy snow today. You know it's about 18 inches possible in through Montana, even portions of Wyoming. The other side of this are going to be looking for some rain even in Southern California and then the bigger threat today will actually be some severe weather possibly in through Kansas and eventually this will make its way across the country and we'll see light rain kind of spreading into the northeast by Halloween.

But I want to end on a good note. I think someone might care about this little forecast, John Berman.

SAMBOLIN: Oh, boy.

PETERSONS: Yes, about 61 degrees, nice and mild today, 7:00 central for Boston --

BERMAN: I could use a rain-out. I need to sleep!

(LAUGHTER)

BERMAN: I need to sleep some night --

PETERSONS: The question is, who do I vote with, you or Nischelle (ph)? I don't know.

BERMAN: I don't think there's a question there. PETERSONS: No, not at all.

(LAUGHTER)

SAMBOLIN: There has to be loyalty here.

(LAUGHTER)

SAMBOLIN: Thank you, Indra.

BERMAN: Thank you, Indra. Appreciate it.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Coming up, Conrad Murray, a free man this morning. Why Michael Jackson's former doctor was allowed to walk out of prison two years early.

BERMAN: And this is an amazing trial. A Utah doctor accused of murdering his wife to keep an affair going. The alleged mistress on the stand when EARLY START continues.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BERMAN: Who's that?

SAMBOLIN: That's Lady Liberty. Doesn't she look beautiful this morning?

BERMAN: She's looking fresh and awake this morning.

SAMBOLIN: So, today is a really special day. Ellis Island is reopening this morning. We're going to be all over it. I think "NEW DAY" is covering it as well for us. So, this is very exciting. It's been closed down since superstorm Sandy. So, very excited about that.

BERMAN: Nice to see,

SAMBOLIN: Doesn't she look pretty?

BERMAN: She's hot.

SAMBOLIN: -- all morning long.

(LAUGHTER)

BERMAN: She is one hot lady for a Monday morning.

SAMBOLIN: I don't know about all that.

Forty-one minutes past the hour.

So yet another disastrous development this morning for the problem plagued Obamacare website. Now, no one in the nation can sign up now.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SAMBOLIN (voice-over): Online enrollment came to a screeching halt Sunday because of what is being caused a data glitch. This was caused by an outage at Verizon Data Center used by the government health care site to verify people's identity and to verify their citizenship. No one at the White House or Verizon knows how long it will take to fix this glitch.

BERMAN (voice-over): Breaking news overnight, a doctor who went to jail for Michael Jackson's death, this morning, a free man, just a few hours ago, released. Conrad Murray received a four-year sentence and allowed him to go free in half that time. He served about two years. He left jail at one minute after midnight Los Angeles time. Murray was convicted in 2011 for giving Jackson an overdose of the powerful anesthetic, propofol.

The doctor's attorney says he hopes to get Murray's medical license reinstated so he can treat patients again.

SAMBOLIN: More drama expected this week in a Utah courtroom. A doctor is on trial for his wife's death. His mistress is expected back on the stand. Prosecutors claim Martin MacNeill was having an affair with that woman right there on the right. Her name is Gypsy Willis. They say he drugged and drowned his wife so that he could be with her. Friday, Willis denied that their affair was getting more intense in the months before Michelle MacNeill's death.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did the relationship become sexual?

GYPSY WILLIS, DR. MACNEILL'S MISTRESS: It did.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And when was that?

WILLIS: I think that was in January of 2006.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And how often were the two of you having sexual relations?

WILLIS: We would see each other about a couple of times a month. There were months when we didn't see each other. It was a very casual thing. It's just whenever we had time and it could be arranged and it was --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go ahead.

WILLIS: I think we probably had sex half the time. I mean, sometimes, it was just lunch.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAMBOLIN: Court is dark today. Testimony resumes tomorrow.

BERMAN: A contractor in the North Carolina State Fair charged with three felony counts for allegedly tampering with a ride. Police say 46-year-old Timothy Tuterrow (ph) was operating the vortex Thursday night when it suddenly restarted as riders were getting off. Five people were injured. Three of them were still hospitalized through the weekend. Police say more arrests are still possible.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAMBOLIN (on-camera): Let's take a look at what's coming up on "NEW DAY." Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan are joining us this morning. Good morning to you.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, guys. Hope you had a good weekend.

SAMBOLIN: We did.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We're following a story this morning as you are for the new developments and intense manhunt under way for four Oklahoma inmates. The stories about how they escaped a trapped door, in a shower, a crawl space. Sounds like a movie. We'll tell you about it. They are considered armed and dangerous. We have all the latest information.

BOLDUAN: And we also have this coming up. It was a shocking case out of Florida. Two young girls, 12, 14 years old charged with bullying a fellow 12-year-old who took her own life. Well, the attorney for one of those girls, Jose Baez will be here to talk about the case and why he insists his client is innocent.

BERMAN: Very interesting. Excited to see that. Excited to see the show. Thanks so much, guys. We'll see you in a little bit.

BOLDUAN: All right.

BERMAN: It is time now for our morning rhyme. This one comes from Brian H. Park (ph), a student. He writes, "I should sleep now knowing that class is soon. If my professor catches me dozing off, I am doomed." So, congratulations to you, Brian. We're thrilled that so many students are watching.

SAMBOLIN: I love that.

BERMAN: We're like a studied aid right here on this show. You can come up with your own "Morning Rhymes." Tweet us. The hash tags are morning rhyme and EARLY START.

SAMBOLIN: All right. And coming up, her dad was vice president, now she's seeking a Senate seat. Why Dick Cheney says his daughter, Liz, will win the Wyoming primary.

BERMAN: And three months to go before the beginning of the Winter Olympics. A crazy amount of work still needs to get done. Will the Russians be ready? There are serious, serious concerns and we will have a live report from the Olympic site at Sochi straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAMBOLIN: Welcome back to EARLY START.

Dick Cheney predicting his daughter, Liz, will win the Wyoming Senate primary. She's running against three-term Republican incumbent, Senator Mike Enzi. Her father appearing on ABC this week Sunday, accusing Enzi of catering to Washington special interests in exchange for campaign cash. That's why he says his daughter will emerge victorious.

The former vice president also denying Enzi's claim that they are fishing buddies. Cheney insisting they have never gone fishing together.

BERMAN: But now, it's getting personal. They've never went fishing together.

All right. Three months to go before the start of the winter Olympics in Sochi in Russia, and officials there, they are nowhere near ready. Construction is lagging. There are major security concerns and then there is this. There's no snow! Major lack of snow there. Phil Black is live from Sochi in Russia this morning. Phil, a series of problems there.

PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Indeed. The dust, the rumble of construction can be seen and heard here pretty much around the clock, and there's just 101 days left to get the job done. This isn't just about building sporting facilities.

The goal here is to give a complete overhaul to a concocted Soviet era (ph) city that was never in any shape to be an Olympic host city. And that's why this is on track to be the most expensive Olympics in the history of the games.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BLACK (voice-over): From a distance, this Olympic park looks close to ready, shining new sports venues, finish and tested, but look closer. There's still so much to do. Top of the list, finish the stadium. It's not hosting any sport, but it will be the stage for the opening ceremony. The people directing that spectacle have demanded big changes to the design, including a roof.

Russia is not famous for its efficiency so delivering all this on time will be a statement to the world. It's one reason why President Vladimir Putin is taking such a personal interest. Dmitry Progeria (ph) manages the speed skating arena. He says Putin's regular visits and direct oversight have made a big difference.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm hoping --

(LAUGHTER)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But it has, believe me.

BLACK: But you're seeing things happen?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

BLACK: Sochi's other challenge, overhauling the city's Soviet era infrastructure. The sky line is a mess of cranes and partially completed buildings, many of them much-needed hotels, and then, there's the traffic. It's appalling. Sochi's mayor, Anatoly Pakhomov, is firmly on team Putin and insists somehow it will all be fixed in three months.

Security is an especially big concern at these games because Russia's Islamic terrorists have promised to disrupt them. And organizers can't even rely on Mother Nature to deliver the white stuff. It's subtropical here. So, snowfall is patchy. That's why they're storing vast amounts of last season's snow, just in case.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BLACK (on-camera): The estimated cost at the moment, more than $50 billion. For all of the delays, challenges, and the work there is yet to be done, do not underestimate the Putin factor. He's in town again today meeting with Olympic officials and the expectation is this will all come together somehow because the president is determined to make a statement about the greatness of modern Russia, regardless of the cost.

BERMAN: Although, you know, I'm not sure even Vladimir Putin can order it to snow.

(LAUGHTER)

BERMAN: Not sure. He might be able to but that might be beyond his power. Phil Black in Sochi this morning. Great to see you. I know the ski -- actually a little bit from where Phil is standing, still jarring to see him with the open collar where the winter Olympics are going to be held in just a couple of months. Crazy.

SAMBOLIN: They could always bring in snow.

All right. Next up on EARLY START --

BERMAN: The mystery of Maria. DNA tests coming back on the little girl discovered during a police raid on a Roma camp in Greece. We will bring you up-to-speed with the latest developments on this story.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BERMAN: Welcome back to EARLY START, everyone. Great to see you this morning.

DNA tests have now solved part of the mystery of Maria.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BERMAN (voice-over): She is the little girl discovered during a police raid on a Roma camp in Greece. Investigators are now trying to determine if she was a victim of child trafficking. Maria's birth parents are Bulgarian. Her mother said she gave her to the couple in Greece but did not sell her.

She also denies allegations that Maria had been traffic abroad by a criminal gang. The four-year-old girl is said to be doing well. She is in the care of a Greek children's charity this morning.

SAMBOLIN (voice-over): Hundreds are expected to attend a funeral mass later this morning for the Massachusetts teacher allegedly murdered by one of her students. Over the weekend, mourners turned out to remember 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer. Police say she was killed inside a school bathroom before her body was dumped in the woods right behind the school.

Fourteen-year-old Philip Chism is charged with her murder. He has pleaded not guilty. Through a lawyer, his mother, Diane Chism, issued this statement, quote, "She asks that you know that she cares for the world's hurt over this and greatly hopes for your prayers for the Ritzer family, the Danvers community, for her son, and all those affected by this tragedy."

BERMAN: Such an awful, awful story.

A grand jury subpoena for Miami Dolphins center, Mike Pouncey, could testify in the Aaron Hernandez murder case. That's right. Another football now being -- another football player called in. According to "Sports Illustrated," Pouncey was served one hour after his team lost to the New England Patriots yesterday.

Pouncey is a close friend and former colleague of -- excuse me -- former college teammate of Hernandez. He has not been charged with a crime and police consider him a witness who could help them, they say, with their investigation.

SAMBOLIN: Singer, Chris Brown, arrested again, this time, charged with felony assault. Police in Washington, D.C. say Brown and his bodyguard attacked a man in front of a W Hotel early Sunday morning. In the police report, the victim said he tried to jump into a photo that Brown was posing for with a female fan and that is when Brown and his bodyguard punched him the in face.

He has a broken nose. Brown is still on probation for his domestic violence conviction in the 2009 attack on his former girlfriend, Rihanna. Some say he'll serve jail time because he was on probation.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BERMAN (on-camera): Crazy. Well, here's hoping you have a better morning than Chris Brown.

(LAUGHTER)

BERMAN That is all for EARLY START this morning. It is time for "NEW DAY."

SAMBOLIN (on-camera): Take it away, Chris and Kate.

BOLDUAN: Thank you, guys. We'll see you a little later.

CUOMO: All right. We have new information about the NSA spying scandal and about Dr. Conrad Murray, so let's start the show.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think the bigger news story here would be if the United States intelligence services weren't trying to collect information that would protect U.S. interests.

CUOMO: A tangled web. Another key ally spied on by the U.S. New information about what the president knew and when. The fallout may be just beginning.

BOLDUAN: Manhunts. Four inmates now on the run after a spectacular jail break. They're considered armed and dangerous. So, how did they get out?

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: What an ending. Another dramatic finish in the World Series. A historic out that ended the game and fans still arguing about this controversial call. Could this be the most bizarre World Series ever?

CUOMO: Your "NEW DAY" starts right now.

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

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome to "NEW DAY." It is Monday, October 28th, six o'clock in the east.

Coming up in the show, to try to sign up on healthcare.gov, have some trouble? It wasn't you. No one could sign up anywhere yesterday. Why? What went wrong? And, is there a chance it could get fixed any time soon? We'll give you all the details on this story coming up.

BOLDUAN: Plus, the latest on that bizarre story out of North Carolina. Five people were injured when a carnival ride malfunctioned. Well now, the ride operator has been arrested accused of tampering with the safety mechanism. Was he deliberately trying to hurt riders? What's going on? We'll get into it.

PEREIRA: Also, some breaking news overnight, Dr. Conrad Murray, the doctor convicted in the death of Michael Jackson was released early from prison just overnight -- just after midnight. Big question now, is he going to be able to practice medicine again? We'll have more on that coming up.

CUOMO: Now, to new allegations of the U.S. spying on its allies. The "Wall Street Journal" reporting the U.S. was snooping on dozens of foreign leaders, including German chancellor, Angela Merkel. But the spying recently stopped after the White House became aware. Chief national security correspondent, Jim Sciutto, is in Washington this morning with the story. Good morning, Jim. What do we know?

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, Chris, a very busy weekend of developments here. The "Wall Street Journal" also reporting that the president was unaware of this surveillance until this summer. A separate report in Germany saying, in fact, the president was aware of the spying on Germany going back to 2010. Something the White House vehemently denies.

The White House is really scrambling here with the series of accusations coming out every day. We did get new details over the weekend and overnight about a review the president has ordered of these surveillance capabilities.