Return to Transcripts main page
NEW DAY SATURDAY
Amnesty: Iraqi Forces Executed Prisoners; U.S. Flying Armed Drones Over Baghdad; Jozy Altidore May Return To Face Belgium; Flight 370 Likely On Autopilot In Final Phase; Fighting Intensified across Iraq; Father of Santa Barbara Shooter Talks about Preventing Future Tragedies; Bystander Apathy Effect Shown When New Jersey Woman Was Attacked by Former Coworker; Remembering Soul Singer Bobby Womack
Aired June 28, 2014 - 06:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Early 6:00 a.m. on a Saturday morning, but hopefully, you don't have to do anything but just lay there and relax. I'm Christi Paul.
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Victor Blackwell. It's 6:00 now. This is NEW DAY SATURDAY. And first this morning, armed American drones are flying over the skies of Baghdad.
PAUL: North of the Iraqi capital, a health official says air strikes have killed seven civilians in the city of Mosul, which was seized by ISIS militants two weeks ago. Now Iraqi officials say seven Iraqi soldiers also died when ISIS fighters attacked a military base just 53 miles south of Baghdad.
BLACKWELL: There are reports of executions and questionable killings being committed by both sides. Human rights watch say mass graves full of police, soldiers, civilians killed by ISIS have been found in Saddam Hussein's hometown.
PAUL: Amnesty international say Iraqi government forces have execute Sunni prisoners, apparently, they say, in revenge against ISIS.
BLACKWELL: Let's bring in CNN senior international correspondent, Arwa Damon now, she's in Baghdad. Arwa, there are disturbing reports of these executions we've talked about, by both sides here, tell us more about those.
ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Let's start with the Human Rights Watch support. That comes after Human Rights Watch launched a fairly extensive investigation, looking at satellite imagery, now saying that they do firmly believe that hundreds of people to include those ranging from Iraqi security forces to civilians were executed, their bodies dumped into shallow mass graves in Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit.
But atrocities are being committed on both sides. CNN has been looking into the reports of the execution of Sunni detainees at the hands of Iraqi security forces, as they have been evacuating various locations throughout the country, ahead or during the ISIS onslaught. Those, according to information that we obtained, that has also matched up to information obtained by Amnesty International, taking place in Baquba, but also in Tel Afar and in Mosul.
One witness we spoke to who was wounded in one these attacks described how Iraqi guards entered his cell where he was staying with 36 other people, opened fire with a machine gun. He says that he was amongst one of the only survivors. And with these mounting atrocities on both sides, this is only contributing to the hatred and the sectarian divisions, as we are watching Iraq unravel.
PAUL: We're getting some news right now that Iraqi Air Force carried out air strikes on various ISIS locations within the city of Mosul. That's just coming down to us. And we also know that the top Shiite cleric in Iraq, he is urging an expeditious formation of the government there, thinking that this is what's going to help really solidify this country and thwart everything that's going on.
Arwa, how quickly might that actually happen and how likely is it that Al Maliki, the current prime minister, will still be in charge?
DAMON: Well, this is Iraq at the end of the day. If we look back to the last government formation process, that took around six months. Grand Ayatollah Ali Al Sistani, the top Shiite cleric here according to his spokesman, is trying to urge a speedier government formation process.
Now, according to the Constitution, basically parliament is meant to be convening for the first time on Tuesday. During that session, they're supposed to elect a speaker of parliament and his two deputies. There is then a 30-day period that would see parliament voting on a president and his two deputies and then the timetable basically moves forward.
What Ali Al Sistani is urging is a speedier government formation process, speedier than that timeline that has been laid out and most certainly speedier than we've seen government formations in the past. This is key, because how that government comes together is going to have a direct impact on the violence.
This is a country where historically politics and violence have gone hand in hand. As for the fate of Prime Minister Nuri Al Maliki, will he be a candidate moving forward? Where there have been growing calls for him not to be. We have been hearing that from various Sunni opposition leaders.
We've been hearing that being alluded to by various Shia leaders as well, and the Kurds have made their position very clear. They do not want to see Al Maliki in power once again. But it's going to be a very tricky process moving forward -- Christi and Victor.
BLACKWELL: All right, Arwa Damon in Baghdad for us. Arwa, thank you. We're getting a little more about these Iraqi Air Force air strikes carried out in Mosul. Four locations, according to several sources there, the ISIS headquarters in that city, the health directorate, an area where the old city shopping district there. According to reports, seven civilians killed, two others injured in the air strikes, according to the general director of the health directorate there in Mosul. So we'll have more on that throughout the morning.
PAUL: Meanwhile, those armed American drones that we have mentioned earlier are flying over Baghdad, we know and the reason is to help protect 180 U.S. military advisers there. But this is coming, of course, as Iraq's prime minister slams the U.S., and of course, this evidence emerges of those purported atrocities.
BLACKWELL: Chief national security correspondent, Jim Sciutto, has more. And we have to warn you, we know the hour and that some of you are quite sensitive to these images. Some of you may find these images disturbing -- Jim.
JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Christi and Victor, American drones are now flying over Baghdad and no longer just the "observe and report" kind, but the kind that can kill. But still, air strikes are not part of the U.S. mission there.
SCIUTTO (voice-over): American drones armed with hellfire missiles are now patrolling the skies over Baghdad. But they will not go after ISIS targets, flying instead to provide protection for 180 U.S. military advisers deployed to Iraq.
(on camera): They are prepared to use military force from the air, if necessary.
REAR ADMIRAL JOHN KIRBY, PENTAGON SPOKESMAN: We're certainly prepared, you know, if the commander in chief decides that he wants to employ air strikes, our job is to be ready to do that as soon as possible.
SCIUTTO (voice-over): Frustrated by the lack of American air support, Iraq has now turned to Russia, buying secondhand Russian fighter jets. Just the latest in a string of American adversaries from Syria to Iran, now aiding Iraq. Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Al Maliki, slammed the U.S. in an interview with the BBC, saying, Iraq could have repelled ISIS advances if the U.S. had delivered F-16s first ordered three years ago.
NURI AL MALIKI, IRAQI PRIME MINISTER (through translator): If we had air cover, we could have prevented what has happened in this country.
SCIUTTO: Those F-16s say U.S. officials are just weeks way, though Maliki has also asked for air strikes on ISIS by American war planes. Syrian jets are already carrying out strikes on ISIS targets. This is some of ISIS work. Two mass graves believed to contain bodies of Iraqi soldiers, police, and civilians murdered in Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit.
A new report by Human Rights Watch analysed ISIS photos and concluded the militants executed three groups of men, numbering in the hundreds. The group claims the death toll even higher. While the U.S. still deliberates military action in Iraq, Secretary of State John Kerry met with the president of the opposition in Syria, following a White House decision to seek $500 million to train and equip moderate Syrian rebels.
JOHN KERRY, SECRETARY OF STATE: In light of what has happened in Iraq, we have even more tube in terms of the moderate opposition in Syria, which has the ability to be a very important player in pushing back against ISIL's presence.
SCIUTTO: That aid to moderate Syrian rebels is a step that some people, even within the administration, have been pushing for, for more than two years. And there are critics who say that at least part of ISIS' strength in Iraq can be blamed on the administration's lack of action in Syria -- Christi and Victor.
PAUL: All right, Jim Sciutto, thank you so much, Jim.
BLACKWELL: Here at home, a Texas man prosecutors say tried to leave the U.S. to join ranks with ISIS in Syria has pleaded guilty to terrorism charges. The 23-year-old Michael Todd Wolf now faces up to 15 years in prison. Police nabbed him at a Houston airport earlier this month as he tried to board a flight overseas.
While in a separate incident, also in Texas, a second 23-year-old man is facing terror charges. He's accused of conspiring to provide material support to terrorists and trying to recruit others to commit violent Jihad. Rahatto Khan also faces 15 years in prison.
PAUL: A scathing new report shedding light on the growing VA scandal now. Seventy seven facilities are under investigation this morning for delayed care. Now, the report prepared by an Obama administration aide, cites, quote, "Significant and chronic systemic failures at VA hospitals nationwide."
And it goes on to say that a corrosive culture and weak leadership is what crippled the agency. Also around fire, the 14-day scheduling standard for appointments, which the report calls arbitrary and ill- defined. Among the report's recommendations now, the need for updated technology and additional resources, including more doctors, nurses, and trained support staff there.
BLACKWELL: All right, changing gears here a bit. Do not count them out of the World Cup.
PAUL: We wouldn't dare!
BLACKWELL: Team USA is still one of the sweet 16 contenders. We'll talk about what it will take at this point for them to win.
PAUL: And nearly four months after Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 vanished, guess what? We have learned some new details about the plane's final hours now. What that means for the search at this point. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
BLACKWELL: Yes! Love that music!
PAUL: Love that music, don't we? Let's just keep playing that on in the morning. That'll wake you up.
BLACKWELL: If earning a ticket to the World Cup sweet 16 is not enough, good news for fans of Team USA, there may be another reason to celebrate this morning.
PAUL: Yes, apparently an injured star might be able to play in the big game coming up against Belgium Tuesday. Joe Carter from CNN Sports. Joe, how influential is this particular player?
JOE CARTER, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Jozy Altidore is obviously a great striking force for being able to score goals. We only saw him a very short amount of time in the first game. But he's an important piece to the offense. He pulled his hamstring in the first half. Coach Klinsmann was encouraging yesterday when he spoke about Jozy Altidore.
Obviously he's been running the last few days at full speed. But when you're talking about hamstring injury, at any moment, you could re- aggravate that injury. But Coach Klinsmann was more than positive when he talked about him playing some sort of role come Tuesday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JURGEN KLINSMANN, USA HEAD COACH: Every day is a big step forward with Jozy and it's 11 days now and it's looking better every day. So we're optimistic to have him being part of the Belgium game.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARTER: Obviously, don't expect him to be in the starting lineup, guys, but I would imagine at some point, if Team USA needs all they can grab for, you know, we're in a situation where we're maybe down in the last final minutes and the season is on the line, he might come in at that point. I don't think he's going to be in the starting lineup, though.
Another injury, Jermaine Jones, another broken nose. Don't say soccer's not a physical game, because Clint Dempsey was kicked in the face and broke his nose in the first game against Ghana. Jermaine Jones actually ran into a teammate and broke his nose as well. He is expected to play on Tuesday like Dempsey, he will not wear a face mask.
Yesterday they practiced in the morning, had the afternoon off, got to spend time with family and friends. Today is a practice day in Sau Paulo. Tuesday's game is going to be in Salvador, which is a coastal city, which is good, because it's not going to be in the middle of the amazon jungle, supposed to be in the mid-70s, 30 percent chance of rain. So travel won't be an issue and weather shouldn't be an issue. So Tuesday's going to be fun. Make your plans to get out of work early. Good to see you guys.
BLACKWELL: Likewise, thank you, Joe.
PAUL: So, new details, I'm not kidding you, we have new details about the final hours of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. We're talking to an aviation expert about what this new information means and we'll let you know what it is. What it means for this new search that's coming up as well and why some people are saying that it could take a whole lot of years to solve this mystery at the end of the day.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The challenges for Wimbledon were huge. In our case, we looked at, how do you keep water out of a center court and you think, what does everybody do when it rains now, they put up umbrellas. We just started thinking about, what if we had a giant umbrella?
When you press the button to start the roof closing, a computer starts to work out the exact positions of all the motors. They all work on hydraulics, so they start pushing the roof out, and each panel can be pushed out in succession.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've enjoyed it. It's a great atmosphere when the roof's closed. It gets extremely loud in there and I think the crowd really enjoys it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In a way, changing something that had almost become folklore was a very strange feeling. But as I say, on that opening day when we realized that we'd changed the history of tennis in a small way, that was wonderful.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BLACKWELL: You know, it's been almost four months --
PAUL: Good heavens.
BLACKWELL: Since this flight, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, vanished. And even this far along, we're learning new details about the plane's final hours. According to a new report, Australian officials say the pilots may have been in an, quote, "unresponsive state," after suffering oxygen deprivation.
PAUL: The doomed flight likely maintained cruising altitude, they say, flying on auto pilot for some five hours before it ran out of fuel and spiralled into the southern Indian Ocean. The massive search now will move south, away from where crews had been looking.
BLACKWELL: Let's put this at a perspective. The new search will take place in an area roughly the size of the state of West Virginia. So a large area here. Let's dig deeper with CNN aviation analyst and former inspector general of the Department of Transportation, Mary Schiavo. It's been a while! Mary, it's good to have you back.
MARY SCHIAVO, CNN AVIATION ANALYST: It is. Thank you. At least we have some news and some new direction for the investigation. So good to be back.
BLACKWELL: Let's talk about it. Does the new report rule out the plane's disappearance as an intentional act, now that they're talking about this as being on auto pilot?
SCHIAVO: Well, some people say that it doesn't, but the fact that it was on auto pilot for such a long period of time, they believe, and the fact that they now are pretty well convinced that the crew was unresponsive, it does not leave a lot of pilot suicide, hijacker, nefarious criminal scenarios that make sense.
Particularly when they look at behavioral profilers and they look at the information that they have from prior crimes or similar crimes, and they say it just doesn't fit with a pilot suicide and it doesn't fit with a hijacking, because no one has taken responsibility or credit for a criminal act, from outside forces.
So, that's one of the reasons that they are leaning towards this theory of some kind of a rapid deprivation of oxygen, could have been from a fire or malfunction of the oxygen system. And then the pilots only have an hour of oxygen, if they get their oxygen masks on.
PAUL: OK. So, this new information about the fact that they believe the whole plane was unresponsive, my first question that came to my mind was, how do you know? We don't have a plane. We don't even know where the thing is. What technology is being used to make these determinations at this point?
SCHIAVO: Well, they don't have a lot to go on, but what they're going on is there was absolutely no, apparently, from the satellite pings, is that there was no deviation or change in the plane's flight pattern. Now, people think that it's easy to fly straight and level and continuous, but as a former pilot, I can tell you, perfectly straight and level and no deviation flying is actually very difficult, because your plane can be buffeted by the winds.
I mean, even a slight change in the positioning of your aircraft or the ailerons or the rudder can change its course. So the fact that it they would such a steady course was an implication to them that it was on auto pilot and nothing changed and that would be very unusual for someone, for a live, conscious person in the cockpit not to make any changes to the course and direction or any of the flight characteristics for five hours. That's pretty tough not to touch anything.
BLACKWELL: Let's talk about this new search area, moving farther south in the South Indian Ocean. Actually, earlier this month, an outside team of experts, they pointed to a specific location that overlaps with the area where Australian officials plan to look now. Are you encouraged by this overlap? SCHIAVO: Well, I'm encouraged by the overlap and also that so many things -- and not just this latest information, but all of the previous information from Inmarsat put it in this general area -- now, general is a pretty broad term, meaning, we're talking about originally, hundreds of thousands of square miles, and now we're down to 23,000 square miles.
But an arc, maybe 100 or 200 miles long and to put that in a different perspective, other than saying you're searching in an area the size of West Virginia, you're searching in that area, but looking for a plane in the Grand Canyon. Because under the ocean, it's just tremendously uneven and craggy and mountains and valleys.
And that's why they are encouraged by one other fact, and that is that the United States, in years past, had mapped part of this ocean floor. So, they do have some things to go on, to begin with. They are going to try to map more of it, and they'll have three, up to three submersibles this time. And that's why they're saying it's going to take about a year.
BLACKWELL: A good thing to remember, a Grand Canyon the size of the state of West Virginia.
PAUL: That is a great visual. Mary Schiavo, so good to see you again, Mary. Thanks for being here.
SCHIAVO: Thank you, my pleasure.
BLACKWELL: All right, so, consider this. This woman stopped working, she was then fired.
PAUL: This is bizarre!
BLACKWELL: But then she refused to leave a California family's home. Now there's a new turn this morning involving the woman being called the nanny nightmare.
PAUL: Plus, two Georgia parents facing charges this morning. Police say they kept one of their ten children in a basement, locked up for years.
PAUL: It is 30 minutes past the hour, but it's Saturday, so don't bother looking at the clock. We'll keep you updated. I'm Christi Paul.
BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Here are five things you need to know for your new day.
PAUL: Number one, fighting is intensifying across Iraq as armed American drones are now flying over the capital of Baghdad. They're doing this to protect 180 U.S. military advisers that are there. Now, here's what we've learned, north of Baghdad, a senior military official tells CNN that the Iraqi air force has carried out air strikes on ISIS targets in Mosul. The video you're looking at here is from Mosul, from a few days ago. A health official says seven civilians were killed in today's air strikes.
BLACKWELL: Number two, nobody knows really what she was up to last night, but the so-called nightmare nanny was spotted in a car outside of a California police station. OK, so Diane Stratton hid under a blanket and refused to comment when KTLA approached her. The nanny is still apparently refusing to move out of the home of the family who fired her earlier this month, but police have said that this is a civil matter and they cannot intervene.
PAUL: Number three, a Georgia couple is in custody after being accused of locking their 13-year-old son in a small basement room for two years. Police are charging them with child cruelty and false imprisonment and the boy was found in a room with nothing but a mattress and a bucket he used as a toilet. The boy and his nine other siblings, by the way, have all been taken in by child services now.
BLACKWELL: The funeral for 22-month-old Cooper Harris, who died after being left in a hot car for hours, will happen today in Alabama. The boy's father, Justin Ross Harris, is in jail. He faces charges, including felony murder. Harris is accused of leaving his son inside the car, strapped to a car seat -- in the car seat, rather -- while he went to work. Now, officials say the toddler likely died from hyperthermia, an overheating of the body. Harris will not be allowed to attend that funeral.
PAUL: And number five. GM has got to be wondering, when is this going to end? The carmaker is recalling another 430,000 cars. This time, it's the Cruz, its best-selling model. The problem, a faulty air bag inflator. Since January, GM has already recalled, get this, 20 million vehicles for various safety reasons in the past. The company faces dozens of lawsuits and a number of investigations.
BLACKWELL: Back to the top story now. This escalating crisis in Iraq. Armed American drones are now patrolling the skies over Baghdad, as Islamist militants creep closer to the capital city.
PAUL: Let's talk about it with CNN military analyst, Retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Rick Francona. Colonel Francona, thank you so much. As we were talking about earlier, we know now that the Iraqi air force has carried out these air strikes on ISIS targets in Mosul. What do you make of the developments there this morning?
COLONEL RICK FRANCONA, (RET.) U.S. AIR FORCE: Well, this is nothing new. They've been doing this for quite a few days now. They're using their MI-35 helicopter gunship, it's a Russian-built platform, very, very capable, heavily armed, can put a lot of ammunition on target. I'm a little disturbed with them going into market areas and using these heavy weapons there, and, of course, you're going to take civilian casualties. But politically, this is a good thing. This shows that the Iraqis are not willing to seed the entire western part of the country. They're not going to put their ground troops up there. They've pulled those all back to defend Baghdad, but at least they're making an effort to blunt ISISISs advance.
BLACKWELL: You know, the report there, seven civilians killed and two others injured as a result of these air strikes. I want to ask you about something the prime minister said about the U.S., actually blasting the support, the speed of support, saying that ISIS advance -- this advance might have been avoided if Iraq had secured the fighter jets it's been trying to buy from the U.S. Is this, in your estimation, a legitimate argument?
FRANCONA: No, it's a cheap shot. These F-16s that the Iraqis have purchased have been under contract for some time. The scheduled delivery date for the first F-16 into Iraq is September. Everything is right on schedule. We've delivered some of them to the Iraqis in Fort Worth where the pilots are undergoing qualification training. Everything is on schedule. No one could foresee that they were going to need them earlier. And, you know, it's hard just to turn around aircraft deliveries. There's a lot of things that have to go with that, a lot of equipment and a training package and everything else. So I think Maliki's shot was really uncalled for and I really don't think that he's going to be able to get Russian aircraft in the skies that quickly. I don't know if his pilots are qualified. If he does, they would be from the, you know, previous iteration of the Iraqi air force. So I really think he's just talking.
PAUL: Well, there's also this report from international human rights groups that they're investigating reports of atrocities on both sides. We're talking about mass killings, execution of prisoners. When you're talking about something like that from not only ISIS, but also the Iraqi military there, how does that complicate our U.S. intervention?
FRANCONA: Oh, this is a human rights nightmare, because there's such animosity between the -- and let's talk about the two warring parties here, the Sunni and the Shia. The Kurds are kind of out of this. So, you've got a lot of, you know, years of animosity and this is based on centuries of problems between these two groups. So when you're in that proximity and people are in fear of their lives, this is what happens. And you know, all civility breaks down. And we're going to see more of this, not less.
BLACKWELL: Complicated issue on several levels. Colonel Francona, thank you so much for helping us sort it all out.
PAUL: Thank you, sir.
PAUL: Well, for the first time, the father of a California shooter who killed six people and injured dozens, more than a dozen others, is breaking his silence. Up next, we're hearing from Peter Rodger, in his own words, about why he's coming forward and speaking out about his son's horrific actions.
PAUL: Well, for the first time, we are hearing from the father of Elliot Rodger. Remember, he is the student who killed six people and injured 13 others during a shooting and stabbing spree just last month near the University of California in Santa Barbara. BLACKWELL: Well, in an exclusive interview with ABC's Barbara Walters, Peter Rodger says that he did not see the mass murder coming and says every day he's haunted by his son's action. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETER RODGER: It's like a reverse nightmare situation, when you get to sleep normally, you have a nightmare and you wake up, and oh, everything's OK.
BARBARA WALTERS: Yeah.
RODGER: Now I go to sleep, I might have a nice dream, and I wake up, and then slowly, the truth of what happened dawns on me, and, you know, that is that my son was a mass murder. And then I think about the victims and I think about what he did. And I'm trying to process it.
This is the horror story. This is the American horror story, or the world's horror story, is when you have somebody who on the outside is one thing and on the inside is something completely different. And you don't see it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL: In an open letter to ABC News, Rodger said his son was not evil, but mentally ill. And this is what he wrote. "I tried my best to do my duty as a father, but obviously my best was not enough. My duty now is to do as much as I can to try and stop this from happening again. Too many lives are being lost." that's a quote there.
BLACKWELL: Let's talk more about this with licensed psychologist, Dr. Erik Fisher. Thanks for being with us again. I want to get your reaction to what you just heard.
ERIK FISHER, PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, you know, in Zen Buddhism, there's a cone that says, make medicine from suffering. And when life happens to us, you know, we can look at it and we can be buried by it, or we can do something with it, and that's when I say life happened for you. This is something that's very difficult for me to say. It happened for them, but when we can try to make understanding and out of pain and turn that into a translation of learning and growth and healing for others, that's a very positive and powerful thing to do. And I think that's what the father's trying to do, because he knows his own personal loss, and he can probably relate to other people's losses, that lost people not only through his son's actions, but through some of these other actions that we've seen in the news, that have been horrific happenings with other teens and young adults.
PAUL: Well, and we know that he did recently speak with at least one of the fathers of one of the folks that was killed. His son actually had been killed during this killing spree. What do you think of Rodger's decision to come forward and speak directly to these victims? How does it help?
FISHER: Well, it's incredibly courageous, but also, I can't imagine the survivor's guilt that he feels and the number of, you know, moments in a day that he questions what could I have done differently? But it's a sense of empowerment for him to do something with what's happened, with a situation that feels so helpless. As he said, you know, there's his son's ideal self that he showed the world and the feel self that he kept inside, that ultimately came out through this very real action. And it's very difficult to understand that. But as we look at our own feel, real, and ideal selves, you know, and how we show them differently, we can begin to understand what happens inside of somebody, that when you hide it and bury it for so long and you don't get the help, it can almost grow in some ways like a cancer and it permutates and it mutates and it grows into the thing that often we don't even want to identify ourselves, and then it can burst out and - somebody's horrific actions.
PAUL: Listen, don't go away, because something else we want to talk to you about, police are searching for this woman. Please keep a good look at your screen there. She's accused of beating a mom in front of this mom's two-year-old child. We want your reaction to the video that has gone viral now. And the fact that bystanders did nothing to help.
BLACKWELL: Brutal beatings caught on cell phone video, it's sadly become a regular occurrence. But this one especially gut wrenching.
PAUL: Absolutely. A New Jersey mom violently assaulted in front of her two-year-old son. She was kicked and punched while bystanders, they didn't jump in, they took out their cameras and filmed the thing, leaving only her two-year-old son to defend her. And he tried.
BLACKWELL: And he tried. Cleve Bryan of CNN affiliate KYW has the story. And we have to warn you, what you're about to watch, absolutely, is disturbing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: Mommy!
CLEVE BRYAN, KYW CORRESPONDENT: It was a brutal beating Salem police pulled from YouTube. This is the result. Catherine Ferreira suffered a broken nose and concussion, as well as extensive bruises and cuts to her face.
CATHERINE FERREIRA: I could have been dead right now, if she hit me in the right spot, it would have been over.
BRYAN: Ferreira says she used to work at McDonald's with the suspect, who police have identified as 25-year-old Latia Harris. She says the fight started over workplace gossip, which she admits she took part in, but never imagined it would go so far.
FERREIRA: This is not good for anybody. You don't look good, I definitely don't look good. It doesn't look good.
BRYAN: In the video, a group of what appears to be teens or pre-teens stand by gawking, while Ferreira's two-year-old son Xzavion is the only one trying to intervene.
FERREIRA: After that, I became so much closer to my son, because, it's like, he didn't care what was going on, he wasn't afraid, he just wanted to defend his mom, so that is -- that's my world right there. Like, I love that boy so much.
BRYAN: Police will charge Harris with aggravated assault and making threats against the victim and her son.
FERREIRA: You bet get yourself (EXPLETEVE DELETED)!
BRYAN: Ferreira studies biology at Salem Community College and hopes her injuries won't interfere.
FERREIRA: I have a dream and right now it's just a dream, but I have a dream to become a surgeon.
BLACKWELL: All right, let's talk about this. We have Dr. Erik Fisher with us. He's a licensed psychologist.
PAUL: And before we tackle the assault itself, obviously, I think what is most shocking is that you see this two-year-old kicking and crying and screaming to help her. And other people, they almost look like they were walking around her, just to get a better view of what was going on. How does that happen?
FISHER: Well, this is a topic we call bystander apathy. And it basically has been happening probably for as long as humans have been alive, where they see something happening and nobody acts. There's a diffusion of responsibility and they often take their lead from other people. If one person may have acted, other people may have jumped in, but they were looking to other people. It's a surreal situation that you often can't believe that this is happening, that you're seeing it. You're also looking at your own sense of safety and what happens if I jump in and I'm the only one or I end up getting hurt, so there's a self-protective aspect, but I also think there's a socialization to it too. You look at this 2-year-old, who's not socialized into our culture yet, and here he is doing the bravest thing of anybody in that whole group.
FISHER: He didn't even stop to think, if this person t's getting hurt, I need to act, and that's what he did. And I salute the courage of him and I hope that he continues to be socialized that way. You know, to stand up for something that's going wrong.
PAUL: To defend.
BLACKWELL: The chief of police there released this statement. I'm going to read a portion of it. "There's a moral and social breakdown in the fabric of our society, which is clearly evident when a woman gets pummeled in broad daylight in front of her child while a dozen people pull out their phones to record the incident instead of calling for help. There's so little regard for human life by the actor and by the bystanders." Is he right? I mean is there this breakdown in society? We know that there are websites and entire television shows dedicated to video like this.
FISHER: Well, I wouldn't say it's a continued breakdown of society, I think we are just adding cell phones to it. And cell phones are - let me take a look at this now, and I'll show my friends or I'll put it on YouTube or I'll make a couple of (INAUDIBLE). But in that way, I think it's such a quick reaction that I think people, like I said, are just getting a view of something that just looks surreal. When we add, though, the cell phone thing, it appears very impersonal and very cold. But like I said, the bystander apathy effect has been happening for as long as people, and we all need to prepare ourselves for what we do in these situations.
We need to do mental rehearsals of what I would do if something happened, because the more we prepare for something, the more likely we are to act. Because we know what's in our own makeup of what we can do. So ask yourself a question. Really, if this happened, how would I react and what would I do next? Call 911? Do I assist? Do I stay out of it? Do I get other people and ask other people to help? These are questions we really should ask ourselves so that this doesn't keep happening.
PAUL: OK, and lastly, is this two-year-old, do you think, going to remember this? I mean that was the first thing I thought of --
FISHER: Even if he doesn't remember this, to me, it still stays in his unconscious. It's still part of his language of the world that he has seen and that he will speak. It's how his parents talk to him about it. The words, do they help him to see that he was strong and brave and courageous and help him to do something with this, or do they just say, well, let's just forget that and leave that behind. So, he really needs to sort it out and needs to talk it through and needs to have people around him who can help him effectively do that.
PAUL: All right. Dr. Erik Fisher, thank you so much for being with us. We appreciate you breaking it down for us and best of luck to that little boy and his mom.
FISHER: Thank you.
BLACKWELL: This morning, we're remembering soul singer Bobby Womack. We'll look back on his great music and legendary career.
BLACKWELL: That is a classic.
PAUL: Yeah, the world of soul music has lost a legend this morning. Rock 'n' roll hall of famer Bobby Womack has died. He was 70.
BLACKWELL: Now, when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, and this is a wretched disease, he was having difficulty remembering his own songs. But soul fans will not forget them. Here's Nischelle Turner.
NISCHELLE TURNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Bobby Womack began his long career as a guitarist for Sam Cook and Aretha Franklin. He proved his raspy, soulful voice was one of a kind when his solo career took off in 1967, with his first song, "Trust Me." One of Womack's early songs he sang and wrote, "It's All Over Now," was even re-recorded by "The Rolling Stones." It became their first number one song in the U.K. in 1964.
ROLLING STONE (singing): But it's all over now.
TURNER: Born in Cleveland, Ohio, the singer/songwriter was known for such hits as "Looking for Love," "Women's Got to Have It," and "If You Think You're Lonely Now." His song, "Across 110th Street," which was a hit in 1972, found a new audience in 1997 when it was featured in the opening credits of Quentin Tarantino's film, "Jackie Brown." The R&B singer finally got his due in 2009, when he was inducted into the rock 'n' roll hall of fame.
BOBBY WOMACK: I want to thank you all so much.
TURNER: Three years later, Womack released his album, "The Bravest Man in the Universe," co-produced by Gorillaz's frontman Damon Albarn. In the making of "The Bravest Man in the Universe," the soul man was humbled by the experience.
BOBBY WOMACK: Everything kept falling like it was supposed to fall. There was no craziness, it was about music. That's what impressed me the most.
TURNER: Though Womack continued to perform, he had various health concerns, including prostate cancer, colon cancer, and pneumonia. Then in early 2013, he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. The singer was saddened by the diagnosis, reportedly saying, how can I not remember the songs that I wrote? Considered to be one of soul music's greatest artists, Womack's contributions to music won't soon be forgotten.
BLACKWELL: Classic line of that song, "When you think you're lonely now," I want to tell you about this woman of mine, always complaining I'm not at home, but when I'm there, I'm broke.
PAUL: You're not going to sing it for us?
BLACKWELL: No, no, no, I'm not any good --
PAUL: Can't do it -- .
BLACKWELL: But trying to sing it --
PAUL: I understand. I understand. Yeah, well, we'll keep playing a little bit more of his. BLACKWELL: We'll have a few throughout the morning.
PAUL: Thank you so much for starting your morning with us.
BLACKWELL: Next hour of "YOUR NEW DAY" starts now.