Return to Transcripts main page
NEW DAY SATURDAY
Benghazi Suspect Heads to U.S.; Saying Goodbye to Cooper; Team USA Ready for Belgium; Flight 370 Search Shifts Farther South; Report: Bigger iPhones Are Coming
Aired June 28, 2014 - 07:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Coffee, oatmeal, orange juice, whatever is on the menu, you are on our menu. So, we're just glad that you're here. I'm Christi Paul.
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Can we get some bacon in there? Just for good measure.
I'm Victor Blackwell, 7:00 on the East Coast. This is NEW DAY SATURDAY.
PAUL: Yes, we want to begin with you today with the suspected mastermind of the deadly 2012 attack on the American mission in Benghazi, that's expected to arrive in the U.S., as soon as this weekend, he is.
BLACKWELL: Ahmed Abu Khattala has been spent most of the past two weeks being interrogated aboard the USS New York. Now, as it nears the coast, he's set to be flown to a secret location to await federal trial.
PAUL: It's that decision that's whipping up a new political firestorm, let's call it.
Erin McPike has the latest for us.
ERIN MCPIKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Upon revealing Ahmed Abu Khattala's capture nearly two weeks ago, President Obama announced the alleged terrorist who spearheaded the attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi will, quote, "now face the full weight of the American justice system."
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It's important for us to send a message to the world that when Americans are attacked, no matter how long it takes, we will find those responsible and we will bring them to justice.
MCPIKE: But as Khattala awaits trial here in Washington, Republicans are blasting the administration, insisting he should have been sent to Guantanamo Bay first. REP. PETER KING (R), NEW YORK: Before he's turned over to civilian
authorities, the FBI and all our intelligence agencies, CIA and others, should interrogate him, as long as they have to, because I'm not that concerned about a criminal conviction. We're going to get that, ultimately. But it's important we get as much intelligence out of him as possible. Both as to what happened in Benghazi, who planned it, how it happened.
MCPIKE: A senior administration official has insisted the government will try to collect all the intelligence it can from Khattala, as it does from all terror suspects. In the meantime, congressional Republicans are planning hearings soon to further investigate the 2012 attack. And added to the trial, a looming question over how the two events could affect Hillary Clinton's political future.
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: I took, as you know, 10 years, to bring Osama bin Laden to justice. It's taken more than two years to bring this perpetrator to justice. But Ahmed Abu Khalid has been very much -- Khattala has been very much on the minds of our law enforcement, our military, and our intelligence professionals since that night in September of 2012.
BLACKWELL: Erin McPike joins us now from the White House. Is there a timeline, any start date, potentially, for this trial?
MCPIKE: Well, Victor, it could all start as soon as this weekend, that Khattala could appear here in district court, in Washington, D.C., and when that happens, it could be a real mess here in Washington, because it's going to require substantial security to move Khattala from where he's being held to that courtroom, Christi and Victor.
PAUL: All righty. Erin McPike, thank you so much for the update. We appreciate it.
I want to talk to you now about the fighting in Iraq. We've learned some new moves here by the Iraqi military this morning, as they take aim at Islamist militants who have overrun the country's second largest city.
BLACKWELL: A senior CNN military official tells us CNN Iraq's air force has carried out air strikes today on separate ISIS targets in Mosul. We've got video here of Mosul from a few days ago. The targets included the militant's headquarters.
A top health official tells CNN that the city's health directorate and a shopping district were also hit. And when you say shopping district, you know there are civilian casualty. Seven civilians have been killed.
PAUL: Mosul is just a five-hour drive from Baghdad, where armed American drones are flying in the skies to protect the U.S. military advisers who are there in the city.
BLACKWELL: CNN's senior international correspondent, Arwa Damon, joins us now from the capital city of Baghdad.
Arwa, are you hearing anymore details about this situation in Mosul?
ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, those airstrikes did take place, seemingly, the Iraqi government's attempt to try to send a clear message to ISIS militants, but the great concern, of course, is that throughout the entire country, in areas that ISIS does control, as we were mentioning there in Mosul, for example, they are embedded amongst the civilian population.
And while the fighting has seen one of the largest movements of people in such a short period of time, displace families, is that there is still a significant number of civilians that remain in these areas. Now, we've also heard from the spokesman of Iraq's ministry of defense, General Qassim Atta, who was talking about an offensive that the security officials were launching against the city of Tikrit, Saddam Hussein's hometown, saying that they have managed to recapture it from ISIS militants, who reportedly have fled towards Mosul and also towards the province of Kirkuk.
There, of course, the front line being held by the Kurdish fighting force, the Peshmerga. And the general was also talking about how the Iraqi government expects to receive fighter jets within the next few days. Remember, not too long ago, that few days ago, the prime minister telling the BBC that they were expecting a delivery of fighter jets from Russia and Belarus. That, of course, great concern to the civilian population, who do continue to fear an indiscriminate bombing campaign by the Iraqi government, Victor.
PAUL: So, Arwa, I want to ask you about the U.S. drones in the skies over Baghdad. Iraq's prime minister, of course, is insisting, as we understand it, that the capital is safe from ISIS. Do you feel safe? Do the people there feel safe? Can you help us get a sense of the situation there?
DAMON: Look, to put it quite bluntly, Iraqis have never felt safe. They have not for quite some time, not since the U.S.-led invasion, one could, in fact, argue. Right now in terms of daily violence, daily bombing on Baghdad, they do still occur, albeit at a slightly lesser level, but people are very frightened by this potential for an ISIS defensive, because even if ISIS does not manage to storm Baghdad, as one may imagine, there are various sleeper cells that do already exist within the borders of the capital and there have been numerous car bombings that are geared towards the Shia population.
So, it might not appear as if it is going to be this massive offensive, from numerous different directions, although there are various reports that ISIS is trying to penetrate Baghdad, from at least four different points. The violence could very easily reach the capital in a different dimension. You could once again see the capital, divided along that patchwork of Sunni and Shia neighborhoods, and at a stage where you don't have the U.S. military to even try to begin to rein it in.
So, Iraqis are living in a heightened state of fear and anxiety, arguably more than they ever have in the past, because their future is more uncertain at this stage than it's ever been.
BLACKWELL: All right. Arwa Damon reporting for us there in Baghdad. Arwa, thanks.
PAUL: Let's take a closer look at the U.S. options this Iraq at this point.
BLACKWELL: Joining us now is retired U.S. Army Officer Douglas Ollivant. He's former director for Iraq at the National Security Council during the Obama and Bush administrations, now a senior national security fellow at the New America Foundation.
PAUL: So, Douglas, as international human rights, this is the other thing we're hearing this morning, these rights groups are continuing to investigate reports of atrocities by both sides in Iraq of mass killings, of the murder of prisoners. How do those things, coming from both sides, complicate any U.S. intervention?
DOUGLAS OLLIVANT, SENIOR NATL. SECURITY FELOW, NEW AMERICA FOUNDATION: Well, they certainly complicate things. We know that ISIS has done these atrocities. They're advertising them, they're reveling in them.
They're taking great pride in what they're doing. They could easily be occurring on the other side as well, we don't know that, they're certainly not talking about it. But they have the potential to accelerate the Sunni/Shia conflict and bring people who otherwise wouldn't participate in this conflict, you know, neighborhood gangs, things of this nature, unorganized militias, into the conflict again.
BLACKWELL: So, Christi just brought this up a moment ago, in the conversation with Arwa, the prime minister's assertion that Baghdad is safe. He says, and I'm going to read the quote here, "We have an army to respond to the catastrophe that has occurred and Baghdad is safe and cannot be exposed to instability."
In the context of the soldiers that we've already seen abandon their posts and get rid of their weapons and uniforms, what credibility do you give that statement, that Baghdad is different than Mosul and any of the other cities that have been taken by ISIS?
OLLIVANT: I think most of us do think that Baghdad is different than Mosul, but it's certainly easy to understand someone's skepticism about that claim. But I think most analysts do think that the Iraqi army will stand up for Baghdad, that particularly the Shia conscripts will make sure that the Kadhimiya Shrine, which is on the north side of Baghdad, is not exposed to ISIS, you know, can't be torn down or blown up or attacked.
So, we do think we'll see a little more spine in the backs of the Iraqi army as the fighting moves closer to Baghdad.
PAUL: Well, we know, you know, diplomats are telling CNN that the U.S. is not likely to launch any sort of strike there in Iraq before is, you know, or against is, before any sort of government is formed. Before there is a formation, we know that the top cleric in Iraq is calling for this expedited formation of the government there. But how likely is it that that could even happen and will Nouri al Maliki, the prime minister, be involved in a new government?
OLLIVANT: Well, there's a lot of questions there. I think these two things are going to occur on two different timelines. There's going to be, at some point, a battle for Baghdad. I thought it was going to occur faster, I think most of us did. But it seems like the offensive has slowed down.
But still, at some point, there's going to be a fight around Baghdad. Then there's going to be government formation. We know that's going to be slow. I don't believe it's possible for them to work through the process and get a new prime minister before mid-August, earlier, and I would say September is more likely.
So, if a major offensive occurs in Baghdad before we have a new government, then we'll be forced to make a decision as to how we react to that, one way or the other. And as to whether it's the prime minister, I think we'll just have to see. He is certainly, because of his earlier vote share, still in the dominant position in Iraqi politics.
PAUL: All righty, Douglas Ollivant, thank you so much for your insight. We really appreciate it this morning.
BLACKWELL: Thank you, Douglas.
OLLIVANT: Thanks, Christi, Victor.
BLACKWELL: Tragic accident or murder? That's the question surrounding the death of a Georgia toddler who died after being left inside a hot SUV for seven hours. Nick Valencia is following this story for us -- Nick.
NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A somber day here in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, where the funeral for 22-month-old Cooper Harris is expected to happen this afternoon. I'll have the details in the investigation after the break.
You're watching CNN NEW DAY SATURDAY.
BLACKWELL: Later today, the funeral for 22-month-old Cooper Harris, the Georgia toddler who died after he was left in a blazing hot SUV, will be held in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
PAUL: His father, Justin Ross Harris, behind bars facing charges included felony murder. Now, police originally described the incident as a result of just a tragic, absentminded father.
BLACKWELL: But this morning, the investigation has turned into something more sinister. The big question now, whether Harris intended to kill his son. For those who know Jarris, they say that that just does not add up.
CNN's Nick Valencia has more from Tuscaloosa for us.
VALENCIA (voice-over): In his hometown of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, friends say what Justin Ross Harris is accused of doesn't make sense.
Family friend, Carol Brown.
CAROL BROWN, HARRIS FAMILY FRIEND: It's just hard to imagine that that could happen, that that could have really happened. It just seems out of character for Ross. And I know people change, it's been 15 years or so since we've had contact in the church. So, you know, people change, but I -- it's just hard for me to imagine that that is the Ross, the sweet Ross Harris, this sweet little funny boy, that we knew.
VALENCIA: Harris grew up here, a city about an hour outside of Birmingham, known mostly for its historic college football team and civil rights history. As a boy, he spent a lot of time at the University Church of Christ, going on retreats and making people laugh.
(on camera): This is the family home that Ross Harris Grew up in here in Tuscaloosa. We just knocked on the door and his parents answered saying that they did not want to comment to the media. Friends and family that we've spoken to off-camera say that the man police say is charged with murdering his 22-month-old son is not the man that they know.
(voice-over): Harris graduated from central high school in 1999. For the next several years, he stayed in Tuscaloosa, employed to the University of Alabama, first as a parking monitor and later as a mail delivery clerk.
And then in 2006, he found work with the Tuscaloosa police department as a dispatch operator. It would be the same year he married his wife, Leanna, who also grew up in the area. He would stay in Tuscaloosa until 2012 to earn a bachelor of science degree at the university he once worked. And then it was off to Atlanta, Georgia, for a new job as a web developer for Home Depot, a move that would change his life.
Back in his hometown of Tuscaloosa, his family and friends have been instructed by a lawyer not to talk to the media. All of them waiting to find out if little Cooper's death was a tragic mistake or something else.
PAUL: Nick Valencia joining us live now from Tuscaloosa.
So, Nick, we know police have seized computers from the father's office. What have you learned about that?
VALENCIA: Yes, good morning, Christi.
We know that a source close to the investigation told HLN's Nancy Grace that on his work computer, Justin Ross Harris' work computer, there was a search for how long it takes an animal to die in a hot car.
Now, we don't know who did that search or when it happened. Those details are expected to emerge in search warrants that could be released as early as today. They could, perhaps, also tell us motive and why police remain unwavered in their belief that Justin Ross Harris meant to murder his son.
Now, another note, Christi and Victor, on those computers, Leanna Harris, the wife of Justin Ross Harris, and the mother of that little 22-month-old Cooper Harris, she requested photos to be removed from his laptop, or husband's laptop so she could use some of those photos of Cooper Harris here at the funeral that's expected to happen later this afternoon.
Her request was denied by the Cobb County police department, according to an attorney -- Victor, Christi.
BLACKWELL: All right. Nick Valencia, thanks for keeping us up to date on this story.
PAUL: Our thoughts and prayers going out to all the people there in that community today.
All right. A much lighter note, there's another community that is waiting, as the music will tell you. The music is always an indication.
Can Team USA pull off another World Cup upset? We're going live to Brazil for the latest on the game and some big injury news too that could decide the fate of America's team.
PAUL: All right. U.S. soccer fans, we've got some good news for you here. Team USA star Jozy Altidore may come back Tuesday to face Belgium.
BLACKWELL: There's a chance. A hamstring injury --
PAUL: They say there's a chance.
BLACKWELL: Just a chance -- to ride the bench in Thursday's loss to Germany. CNN's Shasta Darlington joins us live from Sao Paolo, Brazil.
Let's hope it's a good chance we'll see him back out there.
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, it would be really good news, because Jozy Altidore was hurt in the very first game, the very first match of the World Cup. He's been on the bench ever since, and it's really forced Team USA to juggle around its positions and play a much more defensive game.
But when reporters asked Coach Jurgen Klinsmann if we might see Jozy back at this big Tuesday game, this is what he had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JURGEN KLINSMANN, TEAM USA 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)
DARLINGTON: Now, of course, that's just one important piece. It's a huge achievement for Team USA to have made it this far, to have made it into the round of 16. But they just have bigger challenges ahead. So, going forward, they're going to see how they play against Belgium, and if they can make it even a step further.
PAUL: OK, Shasta, what other injuries might we want to watch that could affect, you know, the USA team?
DARLINGTON: Well, on the one hand, there are a couple more injuries on the team itself. We've had two broken noses. Clint Dempsey, a couple of games back, and then in this last game against Germany, Jermaine Jones also broke his nose. Those are some things to keep an eye on.
Clint Dempsey went straight back into the game. We expect Jermaine to as well. There's always the possibility they could wear masks to protect themselves.
But also on the Belgium side, one of their key defenders, Vincent Kompany, he's also been suffering groin injuries. And it's not clear whether or not he'll be playing, which would be unfortunately good news for Team USA.
So, we'll probably only find out the day of the game itself, who's going to be on the field.
PAUL: All righty. Shasta Darlington, live in Brazil for us -- Shasta, thank you!
BLACKWELL: So, it's been almost four months now since that Malaysian Air Flight 370 vanished. There's a new report that may help explain what happened during the flight's final hours. We'll tell you why officials believe the pilots may have been incapacitated as that plane carried out a doomed a flight.
PAUL: Plus, Nevada students want to hear Hillary Clinton speak, but they want her to do it for free. We're going to tell you why the rumored presidential candidate is under fire now.
PAUL: I'd say don't hit the snooze button, but hopefully you don't have to worry about the alarm clock today on a Saturday, 28 minutes past the hour. I'm Christi Paul.
BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Here are five things you need to know for your new day. PAUL: Number one, Iraqi military is trying to flush ISIS militants
out of Iraq's second largest city this morning. An Iraqi military official tells CNN Iraqi war planes have fired hellfire missiles at ISIS targets in the northern city of Mosul, but it appears civilians are getting caught in the middle of all of it. A top official says seven people have been killed in air strikes.
BLACKWELL: Number two, according to a scathing new report by the White House, 77 veterans affairs hospitals are now under investigation for delayed care, 77. The report, repaired by an Obama administration aide cites significant and chronic systemic failures at V.A. hospitals nationwide. Among the report's recommendations, the need for updated technology and additional resources, including more doctors.
Number three, the man who wrote the Rolling Stone's first number one hit in the U.K. has died. That's Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, there, Bobby Womack. He was just 70 and a victim of Alzheimer's disease. His career as a soul singer and songwriter spans 50 years and he'll be remembered for that Stone's hit, "It's All Over Now," and many of his own, including, "If You Think You're Lonely Now."
BLACKWELL: Wait until tonight.
Number four, Hillary Clinton is under fire for a massive speaking fee. Students at the University of Nevada want Clinton to give back the $225,000 she was paid for an appearance this October. A lot of the students bristled at paying that amount of money, especially since tuition has recently gone up 17 percent. A university spokesperson disputes the link, saying the money came from a private donation, not tuition funds.
PAUL: And number five. I am sorry to tell all of you folks in Minnesota there, that what you're seeing is more of what you can expect. Flooding, the upper Mississippi valley could get hit with damaging winds and hail. I want to show you some aerials here too. The St. Paul half of the twin cities has really been hit with some of the worst flooding here.
Karen Maginnis is in the severe weather for us with an update right now.
Who's the target today, Karen?
KAREN MAGINNIS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: There are about 18 million people that are at risk for showers and thunderstorms today. Could see an isolated tornado. A very stubborn weather pattern, just does not want to give up across the Upper Mississippi River Valley, and the central plains. This morning, Garden City County, Kansas. They have seen some street flooding there.
But upstream from the Mississippi River, heavy rainfall over the last several days, and indeed, another round of showers and storms for Minneapolis, as we go through the afternoon and evening hours, all the way from Fargo to Minneapolis, Des Moines, Kansas City, Oklahoma City, as I mentioned, about 18 million people today under the gun for the risk of severe weather. A smaller area, but nonetheless, risky area coming up for Sunday, from Minneapolis to Sioux falls to Omaha, to Kansas City, so watch out. The pattern is setting up where we're seeing this heavy rainfall. That's why the big rises across the Mississippi and other rivers.
I want to show you the fire situation in Arizona. This between Show Low and Springerville, about 5,000 acres already have burned here. It is hot, it is dry, and firefighters say they don't know what started the fire. It's too hot and too dangerous to go in to investigate. We'll be back.
PAUL: Hey, Karen Maginnis, thank you so much.
BLACKWELL: This morning, there is a major shift in the hunt for missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370. So, we're almost four months into the search here. This 777 Boeing en route from Beijing to Kuala Lumpur. Officials are moving the search further south in the southern Indian Ocean.
PAUL: Take a look at the map here. It shows where crews are going to begin scanning the bottom of the ocean floor. That's happening at the start of August. The new search zone is about the size, just so you know, of West Virginia.
BLACKWELL: This morning, there are also new questions about the flight's final hours. According to a new report from Australian officials, the pilots were likely incapacitated after suffering from oxygen deprivation.
Also in this report, a revelation that the jet may have flown on auto pilot, until it ran out of fuel, possibly then spiraling into the ocean.
Let's talk about this with CNN analyst and director of special projects for Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, David Gallo. Also, we have CNN aviation analyst, Jeff Wise, with us.
PAUL: So, I wanted to as you, all this new information that's coming up.
Actually, Jeff, let me ask this of you.
JEFF WISE, CNN AVIATION ANALYST: Sure.
PAUL: How do they know that the crew and that the people on board were incapacitated? We don't have a plane? We don't have any debris. What technology are they using to discern this?
WISE: That's a great question. And they don't, in fact. What the report really says is it seems like the plane was credibly flying in more or less a straight line. And that would be consistent with pilots being rendered unconscious by hypoxia. It doesn't rule out other causes for that kind of potential behavior.
So they're not really asserting that the pilots were unconscious, but as a for instance, this is one reason why the plane might have flown like this. BLACKWELL: David, help us understand this new search area, much
larger. And as we learned in the initial, say, 6 to 8 weeks of this search, we don't know a lot about this body of water.
DAVID GALLO, CNN ANALYST: Yes, Victor, it's one of the most unknown pieces of our totally unknown ocean, as it is, and it's incredibly rugged in places, incredibly deep in places. So it's going to be challenging. And right now, there are two ships out there making the first real maps of the sea floor. So, I think we're going to see some pretty spectacular topography coming out of that. But, yes, it's going to be pretty challenging.
PAUL: So, Jeff, if the plane was on out pilot and then it crashed, would it be a violent crash, and or would it kind of glide down to the surface? There's still no explanation of no debris anywhere.
WISE: Yes, I mean, that's a huge part of this riddle. The plane, if the scenario that's outlined in this, I should say, very interesting report, full of information, it gives us a much more complete picture than we've ever had up to date. So, it's very exciting that this has been released.
But, yes, the assumption that the authorities are playing are right now is that the plane flew on auto pilot until it ran out of fuel, until it ran out of fuel and it entered a spiral descent into the ocean, or it would have hit at extremely high speed, would have and been pulverized into many small pieces. And so, you should -- it's not the scenario where the plane landed gentle and sank and went in one piece to the bottom. There should have been massive amounts of debris. It's a huge puzzle, why haven't we found floating debris. That's a great question.
BLACKWELL: So, what --what will this search look like? The last time, it was the one Bluefin-21, doing the lawn mower pattern, up and down, up and down, hour after hour, are we going to see a single submersible here, more than one? What's it going to look like, David?
GALLO: Yes, I think, Victor, because there's such different kinds of terrain, some shallow ones, some deeper and roughed that you're going to find that the ATSB is in the process of this right now, choosing exactly which vehicles, which ships, which tools, which teams to put to use. So, we're probably going to see a bit of everything, but most of it is going to be exactly how you describe it, a lot more lawn mowing back and forth.
The trick is here, Victor, is to not leave a spot unsearched. You don't want to leave an opening where that plane might be. So they're going to be very methodical about how they map the sea floor.
BLACKWELL: So, Jeff, is there anything in this report you call so interesting, any one specific thing that you would like to know more about, that's missing from it? And why do you think it took so long for the report to come out?
WISE: You know, there's really been two mysteries this entire time, almost four months, incredible. On the one hand, the mystery of the plane, and on the other hand, the mystery of the behavior of the authorities. And we still don't know much about where the plane is.
But we know a lot more about the kind of logic that the authorities were using, as they were shaping the search. So what we're left with now is we're trying to -- we who are independently observing this search effort -- trying to really narrow down and understand why the authorities are looking where they're looking. And that's something that's a lot of outside experts are trying to piece together right now.
They're looking at a very wide area. It's going to take at least a year to start to search this area. And we don't really have a good sense of, is this really the best strategy? Is this type of analysis really the most appropriate for the data that's provided? You know but it's very heartening that they've opened up to a great extent, a lot more than before. They've opened up their data, opened up their reasoning, and I think it's going to become a much more democratic and open process, which I think is very encouraging.
PAUL: OK, David Gallo and Jeff Wise, we appreciate your insight. Thank you for being here, gentleman.
WISE: My pleasure.
BLACKWELL: Parents are now facing allegations of child abuse after their missing son is found alive in their basement. You probably saw the moment from Nancy Grace's program over on HLN. But now, the family's attorney is saying the kid is not so innocent.
PAUL: Oh, boy.
BLACKWELL: You've got to watch this line here. We'll have the latest on this investigation, coming up.
PAUL: All right, folks. This is one of those moments where you're watching the television and you're thinking, am I seeing what I really think I'm seeing here? Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NANCY GRACE, HLN: We are getting reports that your son has been found alive in your basement.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What?!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BLACKWELL: Yes, this father learns his son, who's been missing for 11 days, had been missing for 11 days then, was found alive in his basement, on television, and the case since then, it's only gotten more bizarre. His mother has been taken into custody. And when we say mother, we're talking, the boy's stepmother, taken into custody, on apparently unrelated charges. PAUL: Alexandra Field is following the investigation from Detroit
Good morning, Alexandra.
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christi, Victor, there are still no charges in this case, but the 12-year-old boy, Charlie Bothuell, is talking to police, presumably telling them more about where he was during the 11 days he was missing and what happened to him.
FIELD (voice-over): Charles Bothuell, tight-lipped --
CHARLES BOTHUELL, FATHER: I can't, I've got to listen to the attorney.
FIELD: Bombarded by questions about how his son turned up behind a barricade in the family's basement, 11 days after he was reported missing.
(on camera): Charles, if you were able to speak to your son right now, what would you say to him?
BOTHUELL: I have to say, no comment.
FIELD (voice-over): But the father's attorney is defending him, saying 12-year-old Charlie was a troubled kid, becoming particularly upset, after he learned he would no longer be home-schooled.
REPORTER: Troubled, how?
MARK MAGIDSON, BOTHUELL FAMILY ATTORNEY: He'd been failing in school, he'd been kicked out of a couple of schools, and he told his son, Charlie, the responsibility is now going to be you. You're going to have to go to school like everybody else, and if you don't go to school and the public school, I'm going to have to send you to a military academy.
FIELD: Attorney Mark Magidson says she doesn't know where Charlie spent 11 days or how he ended up in the basement. As for the couple at the center, a growing suspicion, Charlie's father and stepmother, he calls them very caring, very loving parents. When Nancy Grace broke the news live on air that his son was alive, this was Bothuell's reaction.
GRACE: -- reports that your son has been found alive in your basement.
FIELD: Police say the 12-year-old couldn't have constructed the barricade, which included a 55-gallon container, on his own. They haven't ruled out child abuse after finding a PVC pipe and bloodstained clothing. JEFF GARDERE, PSYCHOLOGIST: Seems to be more than just the case of a
missing boy, but some sort of a family dynamic that may have been taking place.
FIELD: No charges have been filed, but in a bizarre twist, Monique Dillard Bothuell was taken into custody for a violation of probation after police say they searched the home and found a firearm. Earlier this year, Charlie's stepmom pleaded guilty to purchasing a pistol without a permit. Her husband was in court to support her, but he hasn't seen his son since he was found Wednesday. Charlie disappeared after being scolded for not doing chores and exercises.
MAGIDSON: When he first got there, he was overweight, frankly. My client, being an RN, being in the medical field, was acutely aware of the problems with child obesity. Yes, he asked him to work out on the elliptical. It was punitive? No.
FIELD (on camera): Was this little boy ever in danger in his own home?
MAGIDSON: Never in danger in his own home.
FIELD: Mark Magidson says neither of his clients ever hurt or abused the boy. Charlie was taken to a hospital to be checked out by doctors. He has also spoken to child psychologists. Right now, he's with his biological mother -- Christi, Victor.
BLACKWELL: So many questions. Alexandra Field, thank you very much.
PAUL: Yes. We're going to get some of them answered hopefully a little bit later in the show when we talk to our legal team.
But let's turn to technology. Let me ask you your opinion here. Does bigger always mean better? Apparently, the folks at Apple means it might.
Look at Victor, he's just got a smile on his face. He's not going to partake in that conversation.
BLACKWELL: According to reports, the tech giant is about to release new iPhones, but much larger screens.
PAUL: Here's your mortgage update this morning. Fixed rates dropped slightly. Take a look.
PAUL: All right, you gadget lovers, here's the billion dollar question, iPhone or android?
PAUL: Me, too.
BLACKWELL: All right.
According to Nielsen, if you own a smart phone there is a 94 percent chance one of the two is in your pocket right now and both Apple and Google are doing just about everything they can to win your business.
PAUL: Bloomberg's reporting that Apple is going to make their phones bigger. The new phones will reportedly have a display screen that's 4.7 inches and 5.5 inches across diagonally. What does that mean to you? Well, it's a pretty big leap from the 4 inch display on the iPhone 5S and 5C right now.
BLACKWELL: CNN technology analyst Brett Larson joins us live from New York.
Brett, good morning.
I've got two, one issued by work and one I have myself.
BRETT LARSON, CNN TECHNOLOGY ANALYST: Right.
BLACKWELL: If they increase the size of the screen another inch and a half diagonally what will I do with these huge phones? Is this a good idea?
LARSON: People seem to want these larger phones. As we saw on that graph, Apple is up against all the big HD phones coming from HTC, coming from Samsung, the Google Nexus phone is also a larger screen.
So, the four-inch screen we all loved when it first came out, it was slightly smaller when the iPhone first came out, it's now -- it's become sort of dwarfed by the comparison. That extra inch and a half, what that is really going to get you or in the prior case, extra 0.7 inches, what that is really good for is all the mobile video that we like to be consuming and the video games we like to be playing while we're on the go. That's really where the screen real estate makes the most sense.
The problem that we're up against is we are running out of space in our pockets for these things because a 4-inch phone is already -- you know, that's a lot. That's the size of most wallets.
A 5-inch phone, 5 1/2-inch phone, you know, we're talking more about what we like to call the phablet or a phone and tablet in one, and you look silly when you're walking down the street talking on it. Just throwing that out there.
PAUL: The bricks we used to have.
BLACKWELL: Oh, yes.
PAUL: How long do you think it'll be before we see the new iPhone, though?
LARSON: Rumors suggest September. That actually lines up really well with what Apple is doing. They're going to roll out the new iOS, iOS 8, which is expected to be out also in September and usually, they line those things up at the same time where they have the new phones come out, and then they have the new operating system come out so existing users get the new iOS 8 and new users line up for the previous week to get their hands on the new phone.
PAUL: All righty.
BLACKWELL: OK. So, let's talk Twitter.
BLACKWELL: You know, over the last week, some users have apparently had access to a new feature called retweet with comment.
BLACKWELL: What's this?
LARSON: Now, you know, I love what they're doing. I think this is a great idea for Twitter. Twitter has been struggling a little bit since they've gone public to remain relevant and just stay active and to keep all their user base. So, what they're going to let you do now is when you get those tweets, maybe you get the CNN alert that says, you know, the U.S. advances in the World Cup and there is more information and you want to retweet that to your followers, you've always been limited to that 140 character cap. So, if what CNN sent out was 100 characters then you only have 40.
Now, what they're going to let you do is quite awesome. They're going to let you actually retweet that whole tweet that was sent out with any picture and with any information. You can see it there on the right side of your screen. And then you get to add in whatever you want. Then you actually get back all 140 characters.
So, I think this is a really good -- this is a really good step for Twitter. They're really trying to hold on to the 140 character thing that they've been well known for but now, they're going to -- you know, they're going to basically give you 280 characters but with some exceptions there on retweets.
PAUL: All right. Just so you know, Twitter hasn't given any official comment about the chances of this becoming reality but they do note online, I thought this was funny, it's rare for a day to go by when we're not releasing at least one experiment.
BLACKWELL: Pat yourself on the back, Twitter. LARSON: Yes, they've got a great attitude about all of this stuff. I
like how they roll out features. It randomly pops up on people's Twitter feed. They kind of -- they dress the feedback that they get and then roll it out if everybody likes it.
PAUL: Oh my goodness.
LARSON: It's a good way to do business.
PAUL: Well, it's working for them I suppose.
Brett Larson, good to see you this morning. Happy Saturday.
BLACKWELL: Thank you, Brett.
LARSON: Thank you. You, too.
PAUL: So, let's talk about the immigration crisis, because it's getting personal for one of our own here at CNN. Wait until you hear her story, coming up.
PAUL: Probably (ph) part of your conversation, America is caught up in the debate over illegal immigration. Thousands, many of them children, pouring over the border each year, and recently, alone.
BLACKWELL: This is understandably a big problem. However, it's still made up of a lot of individual stories. And one of them belongs to CNN's Rosa Flores who came to the country legally and offers some personal thoughts on this complicated issue.
ROSA FLORES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I grew up in Progresso, Texas, which is a tiny town in South Texas. It's very much surrounded by Mexican culture. For example, my grandmother's 90th birthday was very much like a quinceanera. There was mariachi music, a big cake, very loud people. It sounded very much like Mexico but was very much in America.
When I was born, the border was less complicated. There was no wall between Progresso, Texas, and Nuevo Progresso. As a matter of fact, it was so uncontroversial that my parents who were legal residents of the United States actually drove to Mexico so that I could be born.
My mom says that I was born in Mexico for economic reasons. They couldn't afford a hospital in the United States. My dad worked in a dairy farm. My mom stayed at home with the kids. I'm one of five. They just couldn't afford it.
But we were educated in American schools. I was the first to graduate from college, even getting a master's degree. I actually feel very lucky that my parents were here in the United States legally and they became U.S. My mom says that she wanted the power to vote she could have a say. She did not want to be a legal resident alien in her own land. She wanted to be a U.S. citizen.