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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Alabama Hostage Standoff; NYPD Top Cop on Gun Control; Tornadoes Rip Through South, Midwest
Aired January 30, 2013 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Erin, thanks.
Good evening everyone.
Tonight on the program, as powerful moment as you can imagine, Gabby Giffords, whose life has changed forever by a deranged gunman, back on Capitol Hill today. She spoke with difficulty on a subject that's neither easy nor simple, preventing another massacre like Tucson or Newtown from happening. "Keeping Them Honest" tonight we're going to look at why figuring out what the right thing to do is so very difficult and why the facts are so hard to come by.
And later, what it's like to live through this. A terrifying moment at the Winter X Games. A snowmobile flipping, landing on its ride. It was another incident where a snowmobile went careening into spectators. Why people now are taking a closer look at some of these extreme sports. We'll look at that tonight.
We begin, though, in rural Alabama with a little boy's life at stake right now. A 6-year-old with Asperger's syndrome who needs medication being held by a suspected killer in a bunker that is now surrounded by authorities.
Authorities have not released the suspect's name by neighbors say he is a 65-year-old man by the name of Jimmy Lee Dykes. They say he's a survivalist, paranoid and volatile. That's how they described him. He was due in court today in connection with an allegedly armed run-in last December with some former neighbors. Instead, he is in that bunker in his front yard with the 6-year-old child.
Now the standoff began yesterday when a -- when the gunman, allegedly Dykes, stepped onto a school bus demanding two boys. When the bus driver tried to stop him, the gunman fired four shots which killed the driver, a 66-year-old man named Charles Poland, Jr. He is being hailed as a hero tonight.
The gunman got away with one child who, as we said, is right now in that home-built bunker.
CNN's George Howell is on the scene for us tonight. Also with us, former FBI hostage negotiator, Byron Sage, and because the suspect allegedly holds extremist views according to neighbors, Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
George, you're on the ground there. What's the latest? GEORGE HOWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, you know, first and foremost the welfare of this 6-year-old boy. Investigators just a short time ago came out to announce that they don't believe that he has been hurt or harmed in any way. That is very good, very important news. They say that at the negotiations with Jimmy Dykes still on going and through the course of that, Anderson, we learned some interesting stuff.
We learned that they were able to get the young boy crayons and a crayon book, coloring book that he apparently requested. But more importantly they were able to get him the medications that he needs.
Now I spoke to State Representative Steve Clouse who has been in touched with the family, staying very close with them, and he says, number one, the family is relieved that they were able to get the medication to him, but also as every hour passes, Anderson, now these are desperate times for them. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVE CLOUSE, ALABAMA STATE HOUSE: The family was camped out. Once they heard about it and we got in touched with them, just to give them any comfort that they needed and they're just holding on by a threat right now. Hoping to get a resolution to the situation and get their young son back.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: You know, so, Anderson, this situation continues hour by hour. We saw a new group of investigators who came in. They continue to relieve each other, you know, just to make sure that everyone is here in place to watch the situation 24 hours as this continues.
COOPER: Byron, you say the critical component here is that this alleged gunman apparently did not know the boy that he allegedly abducted. Why is that so important?
BYRON SAGE, FORMER FBI HOSTAGE NEGOTIATOR: It's key because if an individual is known previously there's a much higher potential exposure to violence. Here it would appear that this individual boy was taken in a classic hostage sense as leverage. So that -- it's a very important aspect of the situation.
COOPER: And, I mean, what's now the most important thing right now for law enforcement who are -- who are basically surrounding this and on the scene?
SAGE: Patience and the opportunity for the negotiation team to develop a rapport and trust with the individual that has taken the hostage and that only comes with time.
COOPER: Mark, I know Jimmy Lee Dykes was not on the -- on the radar of the Southern Poverty Law Center. I know you've been talking with people involved in the investigation. What are they telling you tonight?
MARK POTOK, SENIOR FELLOW, SOUTHERN POVERTY LAW CENTER: Well, what they've told us and these are investigators in the Hood County, the Dale County Sheriff's Office, is that this man was quite well known to his neighbors for holding apparently quite strong anti- government views, whatever that may mean precisely. And also that he was known as a survivalist.
The chief investigator described him as anti-American, this according to neighbors. He also talked about what a loner he was. He apparently had virtually no contact with people around him. And that's about what we heard.
What we've not been able to do is connect this man to any group that we know of.
COOPER: Mark, when you hear the term survivalist, I mean, there are all these shows with doomsday preppers now and a lot of folks, you know, have these kind of ideas, that doesn't necessarily mean they're going to take somebody hostage, but does that -- you know, raise red flags for you?
POTOK: It does raise some flags. I mean, look, certainly most preppers are not going to kill anyone or any criminal violence. But the reality is, is that survivalism has been associated with the far right in this country for many years, and we've seen a real outbursts of survivalists in that various points. At the end of 1990s, the so- called Y2K scare, immediately after the president was elected the first time in 2008, anecdotally at least it looks like we've had a rise in survivalism and survivalist ideas surrounding the re-election of President Obama.
So, you know, this is a movement that has real views about the end of the world. They differ quite a bit but they all fear that something very bad is around the corner. A great many of them feel that the government is behind this coming evil.
COOPER: And George, what have you been hearing from neighbors, people in the area about this man's behavior? It seems like from what Mark is saying, from what he's heard from investigators, this guy was well known.
HOWELL: Well, Anderson, yes, you know, we spoke to Jimmy Davis. He's a neighbor here nearby and he described Dykes as being paranoid, certainly a Vietnam vet, but a person who believed in aliens, believed in alien abductions. And apparently Davis and Dykes, they were supposed to be in court, Anderson, today for an incident that happened back in December.
This is a confrontation between the two men. A situation where Dykes became upset and Davis said he pulled a pistol on him. Take a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JIMMY DAVIS, JR., SUSPECT'S FORMER NEIGHBOR: He brought a pistol out. And by the time I'd seen the pistol, you know, I took off on the truck, pulling the trailer, and I made it probably 10-foot, and he fired the gun twice.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: So Davis was in his pickup truck with his mother, with his young daughter, and this happens. So this is a situation where people who know Dykes, they say, you know, that there were signs all along that he might be unstable -- Anderson.
COOPER: And he was due in court for that incident?
HOWELL: Yes, yes.
HOWELL: It was a charge of menacing. So, you know, again, not in court today and this bunker has been there going on day two, going on now day three.
HOWELL: You know, so --
We just continue to see it drag out, Anderson.
COOPER: Byron, as a negotiator, I mean, you talk about trying to build rapport, having patience and building trust. How do you do that with someone who neighbors say is paranoid and who, you know, has a court case where he's, you know, allegedly shot at somebody?
SAGE: First of all, the negotiators need to recognize that but set it aside, compartmentalize it. You can't let that -- you can't be predisposed to put a -- a character to this individual and let it manifest itself through dialogue. If he -- if he has these kind of issues, paranoia and so forth, he has a story. Obviously he wouldn't have initiated this action and taken the course of action that he's done unless he wanted to try to put across some sort of statement.
It's -- it will be the negotiator's responsibility to try to draw that out as they get his emotionality down and allow him to become more realistic.
COOPER: And Byron, the fact that this has gone on now into day two, is that a -- I mean, does time work in the -- in the law enforcement's favor?
SAGE: This is a -- this is a true hostage situation. It's not a pseudo-hostage situation. A person -- this young boy has been taken hostage purely for leverage purposes. So the passage of time in that context is incredibly important. And frankly I think the family hopefully can take a little positive aspect or positive hope from that fact.
SAGE: That he's allowed them to deliver medication. He has provided them -- particularly if the boy requested the coloring book and so forth and then allowed that to be delivered, those are huge indicators of progress.
COOPER: Well, that's certainly some good news to end on tonight. And we'll continue to watch this.
Byron Sage, appreciate your expertise. George Howell, Mark Potok as well. Thank you very much.
Let us know what you're thinking. Follow me on Twitter right now @AndersonCooper. We'll be following this over the course of the hour if any new developments occur. We'll let you know.
Just ahead no shortage of passion in today's Senate hearings on gun violence from Gabby Giffords and from others testifying. The question is, where are the solid non-partisan facts and why are they so hard to come by? We're "Keeping Them Honest" tonight.
Also, New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly is here to talk about the strategies that work in his city.
And later football great, Ray Lewis, in the Super Bowl this weekend, the final game in a brilliant career. But there's another chapter, a much darker one, to the Ray Lewis story. We'll tell you about it when we continue.
COOPER: Welcome back. A man holds a child at gunpoint after shooting and killing a school bus driver, which was our lead story tonight. Another man walks into a Phoenix office building and opens fire, hitting three, killing one.
Those are just two headlines from today. There have been others recently. Some far worse of course.
"Keeping Them Honest," though, how big a role if any does easy access to firearms play in violent crimes like this? That's the question. And crucially how do we really know what the true facts are. Now are both sides building their cases on shaky factual ground?
Today in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords who survived the Tucson massacre spoke of the need for action.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GABBY GIFFORDS, FORMER U.S. REPRESENTATIVE, WOUNDED IN TUCSON SHOOTING: Thank you for inviting me here today. This is an important conversation for our children, for our communities, for Democrats and Republicans. Speaking is difficult but I need to say something important.
Violence is a big problem. Too many children are dying. Too many children. We must do something. It will be hard, but the time is now. You must act. Be bold, be courageous. Americans are counting on you. Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, she spoke from handwritten note which were posted on the Facebook page of the gun reform group that she and her husband, former astronaut, Mark Kelly, founded. He also testified along with the National Rifle Association's Wayne LaPierre and others. Commander Kelly at one point answering Mr. LaPierre's claim that background checks don't need to be made universal.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CAPT. MARK KELLY, GABBY GIFFORDS' HUSBAND: My wife would not be sitting in this seat, she would not have been sitting here today if we had stronger background checks.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, the NRA's position, though, and it's shared by many people, is that criminals would still be able to get and use firearms, that banning high capacity magazines, would certainly not work nor with reinstating the ban on semiautomatic weapons, such as the ones used in Newtown, Aurora, and elsewhere.
Now there's just one problem. Both sides in the gun debate use the assault weapons ban which was in effect from 1994 to 2004 to make their case. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WAYNE LAPIERRE, NRA EXECUTIVE V.P. AND CEO: Independent studies including one from the Clinton Justice Department prove that it had no impact in lowering crime.
SEN. DIANE FEINSTEIN (D), CALIFORNIA: The Department of Justice report assault weapons as a percentage of gun -- of gun traces which shows a 70 percent decline.
GAYLE TROTTER, ATTORNEY AND SR. FELLOW, INDEPENDENT WOMEN'S FORUM: While armed security works gun bans do not.
CHIEF JAMES JOHNSON, BALTIMORE POLICE: I've been in law enforcement for nearly 35 years and I've seen an explosion of fire power since the assault weapons ban expired. Victims are being riddled with multiple gunshots.
SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: To reenact a law that according to the Department of Justice did absolutely nothing to reduce gun violence.
SEN. CHARLES GRASSLEY (R), RANKING MEMBER, JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: The 1994 assault weapon ban did not stop Columbine. The Justice Department found the ban ineffective.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You might here all those sides and say to yourself, well, both sides cannot be right. The problem is, there's really no clear-cut way of telling who is. Not just because each side accuses the other of cherry picking the data. The real problem is that there's simply not enough good research to draw solid conclusions.
Take a look at what the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service concluded in a November report on the existing -- body of knowledge, and they quote, "None of the existing sources of statistics provide either comprehensive, timely or accurate data with which to assess definitively whether there's a cause of connection between firearms and violence."
And a big reason for that scarcity of good research, well, Congress, under pressure from the gun lobby, doesn't pay for it. Take a look. From 1993 through 1996, Congress allocated about $2.5 millions annually so the Centers for Disease Control, the CDC, could study gun violence. But since 1996, the money has dried up. Averaging just $100,000 a year over the last three years and a budget of nearly $6 billion.
Now having said all that, the lack of definitive research has not stopped policymakers and community members from doing what they can with what they've got in the struggle against gun violence and learning as they go.
Few know that better than longtime New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly who joins me now.
You point to the fact that in a city like New York handguns are the problem that you see on the streets. Will anything in the current debate about gun control legislation, whether it's limiting high- capacity magazines or further background check -- will that limit the lethality in the number of handguns you see?
RAY KELLY, NEW YORK CITY POLICE COMMISSIONER: I think it can have some effect, but there's no easy answer to the problem. I think universal background checks, if they're done properly, if there's sufficient in the data bases, can make a difference. The major problem for New York City and for other cities in America is the concealable handguns.
COOPER: So when -- I mean, everybody is focusing on semiautomatic assault-type rifles, semiautomatic rifles. Are you opposed to a ban on that?
KELLY: No. Absolutely not. I think it's a good thing. But the impact in New York City will be minimal.
COOPER: You see what -- like 1, 2 percent of --
KELLY: Yes, it's about -- it was less than 3 percent. And indications are may even less than that.
COOPER: The NRA says very clearly look, existing laws on background checks are not being enforced, that the number of people who lie -- people who aren't being prosecuted if they lie in background checks, if they turned out to be felons and they're lying or they're not telling the truth. Do they have a point?
KELLY: Yes. They do have a point. But also there's been legislation that's been passed that limits the holding of that information that used to check someone to 24 hours. So the government is restricted, the federal government is restricted on how effectively they can do an investigation.
COOPER: Is it an either/or argument, though? Because essentially they're saying, you know, criminals will never submit to background checks so you don't need more background checks. You just need to --
COOPER: -- execute existing laws greater. I mean, they're saying it's either/or.
KELLY: Obviously you can do both and it makes sense to me to do both.
COOPER: What do you make of their argument that criminals will not submit to background checks? I mean, how big a problem is this, the gun show loophole? That private dealers can sell without having to have --
KELLY: Yes. It's not just in gun shows. It happens outside the gun shows. It's estimated that 40 percent of guns that are sold are sold without any sort of registration or background checks. That amounted to about six million guns last year. That's a tremendous universe of guns. And I think it will deter criminals from buying guns if you have to register.
Again, it's not an easy answer. There is no magic bullet here. But I think each one of these pieces can help to reduce the problem. Never end it. New York City and other big cities are going to have to face the problem of handguns on our (INAUDIBLE) for a long time coming.
COOPER: Where do the guns come from? Because, I mean, New York City itself has pretty tight laws. Do people just getting them out of state? Where do they --
KELLY: Ninety percent of our guns come from out of state. We call it the iron pipeline. COOPER: Isn't part of the problem with these background checks also the fact that states have not been living up to their obligations? The states have not been giving drug data to the national database. They haven't been giving, you know, mental health issue or even arrest data in some cases to --
COOPER: To the national database.
KELLY: Apparently some states think that there are privacy issues when there really aren't. But we know now that some states have held onto as much as 600,000 records in terms of mental incapacity, if you will. Now that flow is beginning to -- beginning to move as a result of all of the attention on the issue.
COOPER: Do you think something has changed after Newtown? I mean, do you think there is enough will? Do you think there will be some sort of legislation or early stricter gun background checks?
KELLY: I think there will be something. But I'm not optimistic that it's going to be a major change. You can see -- as long as the can is sort of kicked down t the road we're going to have less and less of a chance of getting significant change.
COOPER: Do you see a reason why some folks should have semiautomatic, you know, military-style weapons or --
KELLY: I really don't. I don't see a logical reason for military-style weapons or clips with 30 rounds of ammunition. You can certainly hunt with something with a much smaller capacity. I think the so-called assault weapons scare people. I mean they're really weapons of war. They're meant to kill other people. General McChrystal has said.
KELLY: And I don't see any logical -- having said that, I think we're going to be with them -- we're going to have more with us for a long time to come.
COOPER: What about the idea of arming people in schools? I mean, is that something from a police standpoint you worry about?
KELLY: I don't think that's the right way to go. I mean, it would take an awful lot of resources to do that. I think that amount of money and resources would be better spent in a lot of different ways, even additional police officers. To move to have armed officers or armed security guards in schools, I think, would be a tremendous -- not waste, but it would be a tremendous investment of resources that could be better spent in other places.
COOPER: It's interesting. Commissioner Kelly, appreciate your time. Thank you.
KELLY: Good to be with you. COOPER: A quick programming note to let you know about. Tomorrow night we're gathering people from all sides of the gun debate. All different perspectives. For a 360 televised town hall from Washington, D.C. Airs at 8:00 and 10:00 p.m. Eastern tomorrow night.
We're doing out best to try to cut through the noise, cut through the politics of this all. We're not taking sides here. We're just trying to get information and bring you information that really makes a difference. You can weight in. Tweet us using hash tag gundebate360. We may read your tweet on air. "Guns Under Fire; A 360 Town Hall," that's tomorrow night, 8:00 and 10:00 Eastern.
Just ahead tonight, though, deadly storms raking the southeast. Some incredible pictures of tornado caught on tape in Georgia left massive damage in its wake. It's part of a big storm system sweeping the country. We're going to check in with Chad Myers and bring us the latest.
And also later tonight the alleged rape that has divided an Ohio town. Will the high school football players charged get the change of venue they say they need for a fair trial? That ruling ahead.
COOPER: Now Super Bowl, of course, is this Sunday. That's going to be Ray Lewis' last game. The Ravens' linebacker is retiring. But years ago, he was almost forced to leave the game after a deadly night out. There are still a lot of questions about what happened. We've got some new insights tonight ahead.
COOPER: Hey, welcome back. A terrifying day for a lot of folks in the southeast where winter tornadoes killed at least two people, injured nearly 20. Now imagine seeing this twister right outside your window. A touchdown in Adairsville, Georgia, then moved across the state leaving a trail of damage in it's wake. Buildings destroyed, people trapped in the rubble, cars overturned. Authorities were forced to shut down Interstate 75 at one point. Thousands lost power.
Today's storms reported of a huge violent system that's hammering the country from Michigan to the Louisiana coastline.
Chad Myers joins us right now with the latest.
Is this strange to be seeing tornadoes in January, Chad?
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good question. There's about 40 tornadoes every January. Every year on average. But they follow the jet stream. So yes, a little strange. But not completely out of the ordinary. Follow where the jet stream is and that's where the potential is. So in January, the jet stream is down here. That's typical and that's where the tornadoes would be.
If you move up into February and March, start moving a little bit farther to the north. And by tornado alley standards, you know, April and May you're up here. Believe it or not, like in June, July and August, you can actually get tornadoes all they way up into Canada because that's where the jet stream is.
So no, not unusual but, you know, 40, every year on average today we got about 10. So that's obviously more than average for the day.
COOPER: And the big swings in temperature that we've been seeing, you know, well, below freezing.
COOPER: And much warmer today, much cooler again in a couple of days. How out of ordinary is that?
MYERS: You know, it was five degrees in New York City six days ago. Today Newark, New Jersey got to 64. That's a 59 degrees swing --
MYERS: Because of where you were in the jet stream. When the jet stream comes down like this, all of the cold air from Canada and from the north keeps on coming on down. But if the jet stream turns to the north like this, all the warm air comes up. And that's what has happened in the past couple of days for this -- come on up to the northeast.
COOPER: All right, Chad, appreciate that. Thanks. Our thoughts, of course, with all those people in the path of these storms. A lot more happening tonight. Let's check in with Randi Kaye in a 360 Bulletin -- Randi.
KAYE: A 360 follow, a judge has rules against the change of venue in the rape trial that has sparked protest and divided an Ohio. Pictures of the allege victim, a 16-year-old girl, surfaced on social media and led to the arrest of two high school football players. The judge also ruled that the trial will be open to the media and the public both defendants are minors.
U.S. officials say Israeli fighter jets struck a suspected Syrian convoy believed to be moving weapon to Hezbollah in Lebanon. The overnight strike occurred along the Lebanese/Syrian border. Syria disputed the account saying Israel targeted a research facility near Damascus.
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has named William Cowan, a former chief of staff to fill John Kerry's Senate seat until a special election is held in June. Kerry steps down this week to become secretary of state.
And coming to a post office near you, Johnny Cash, the U.S. Postal Service is honoring the legendary and its new music icon series of stamps. They're released it later this year.
COOPER: That's cool. KAYE: Yes. And Anderson, I guess, it's a pretty big deal. Apparently, the U.S. Postal Service gets like 40,000 suggestions of stamps every year and they narrow it down to 20 and Johnny Cash wins it.
COOPER: Nobody like Johnny Cash, good to see you. All right, Randi, thanks very much. The Baltimore Raven's Ray Lewis is going to play his last NFL game on Superbowl Sunday. He seems headed for the hall-of-fame.
But barely 13 years ago he was on trial for double murder, now one of his co-defendants has written a book. You'll hear from him ahead.
And later just when you thought the Manti Te'O fake girlfriend story couldn't get well, anymore involved, it has. Dr. Phil McGraw asks the man who admits he was behind the hoax. Feel in love with Te'O while pretending to be his girlfriend. We'll hear what else Dr. Phil asked in the interview.
COOPER: Extreme sports under scrutiny tonight after some dangerous stunts went wrong. This wasn't the only incident caught on tape. We'll talk to the X Games competitor involved in another frightening accident ahead.
COOPER: Well, Superbowl Sunday is this weekend. The Ravens and the 49ers probably didn't need to tell you that. The Raven's linebacker, Ray Lewis, it's going to be his last game in the NFL. He announced his retirement at the end of the season.
Then he crashed through the playoffs making 44 tackles, more than any other players, remarkable and besides his raw talent is known for this dance, which his fans revere him. He also wears his spirituality on this sleeve literally, on his t-shirt Psalms 91.
But there is another chapter of his past that's never far away and for the first time, one of the men who was involved in an ugly incident speaks out about what really happened the night Lewis' career almost ended before barely got underway. Here's Ed Lavandera.
ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The epic football career of Ray Lewis almost ended 13 years ago outside the Cobalt Lounge Night Club in Atlanta just hours after the 2000 Superbowl. A fight breaks out and when the dust settles, Jason Faker and Richard Luller are stabbed to death left in the street.
Ray Lewis and two friends, Joseph Sweeting and Reginald Oakley are charged with murder. What unfolded next is a mesmerizing saga and the truth is as elusive as ever as you are about to see.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I haven't been back to this area since the incident happened.
LAVANDERA: This is the first time Reginald Oakley has talked on camera about that night. Oakley has written a book, which we find he is eager to sell.
REGINALD OAKLEY, ACQUITTED OF MURDER: From my point of view, I think it was self defense.
LAVANDERA: Oakley says he was leaving the club with Lewis when the two victims started arguing with the group. Jason Baker broke a champagne bottle over Oakley's head then it was mayhem.
OAKLEY: I have no idea that nobody gotten stabbed and nothing like that.
LAVANDERA (on camera): So you didn't stab them?
OAKLEY: No, I didn't them.
LAVANDERA: So how did the guy end up with stab wounds if you were the one fighting him.
OAKLEY: You have to read the book to find out.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): After the fight, Lewis and his entourage piled into his limo and sped off.
(on camera): I was never clear about how to two guys end up in a fight with two other guys and two of them end up dead. No one is ever convicted and how did they end up with stab wounds?
OAKLEY: If you end up with stab wounds what does that mean? Somebody stabbed you.
LAVANDERA: Right. But you're saying you weren't the one that stabbed them.
OAKLEY: All right.
LAVANDERA: So who could have stabbed them?
OAKLEY: You have to read the book and find out if I know it or not.
LAVANDERA: Are you saying -- you know who did it?
OAKLEY: You have to read the book and find out.
LAVANDERA: There are a lot of people think you got away with murder basically. You know everyone watching this is going to think this is a weird answer.
OAKLEY: No, it is not. I think it is an appropriate answer.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): We'll come back to Reginald Oakley, but there is another element of this story that you probably never heard before. The story of what Ray Lewis was wearing that night. Prosecutors said there was a blood trail, eye witnesses and a cover up of lies that would prove guilt.
The limo driver told investigators he heard Oakley and Sweeney admit stabbing the victims. Both men denied this. Other witnesses said Ray Lewis yelled at everyone inside the limo. They were 11 in all to keep their mouth shut and not say anything.
And that quote my football career is not going to end like this. But the white suit Ray Lewis was wearing that night has never been found. Prosecutors suspected it was stained in the victim's blood and that someone took the knives and suit and threw them all the away, which brought us to Ed Garland, Ray Lewis' attorney.
(on camera): Where is the white suit that he was wearing that night?
ED GARLAND, RAY LEWIS' ATTORNEY: It went to the cleaners and was in the suits that were in this closet and the prosecution didn't do the things that they need to do to get access to the suit
LAVANDERA: So it exists somewhere?
GARLAND: I don't know that it exists now.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): Prosecutors denied our request for interviews about this story.
(on camera): The murder trial crumbled on live television. Witnesses backed track on their stories, defense attorneys eviscerated the credibility of many witnesses. It got so bad that prosecutors had to drop murder charges against Ray Lewis in the middle of the trial and offered him a plea deal.
Lewis pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of obstruction of justice in exchange for testifying against Sweeding and Oakley, but even that didn't help. Both of those men were acquitted. Ray Lewis claimed he was the peace maker, but Oakley said that was not the case.
Was Ray involved in the fighting?
OAKLEY: In my opinion yes. I know he was right in the midst there with everyone else.
LAVANDERA: Because his lawyer in his side has said he was trying to be the peace maker in that situation.
OAKLEY: I didn't see that. When the police asked him what happened. He wouldn't come clean.
GARLAND: He was not involved in the fight. I didn't take an act, a step, a statement to make this happen. He was no more guilty than 100 people on the street.
LAVANDERA: No one has ever been convicted in the deaths of Jason Baker and Richard Lullen. For Baker's uncle, Greg Wilson, it angers him to see Ray Lewis basking in the glow of football glory and redemption.
GREG WILSON, VICTIM'S UNCLE: Stop acting like you were one of the people to come out of the bible.
LAVANDERA (on camera): So you think on this day, Ray Lewis knows what happened that night.
WILSON: I hope that it haunts them for the rest of their life until they die and burn in hell.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): The most painful irony of all for Greg Wilson is that in a few years Ray Lewis will likely be immortalized in the pro-football hall-of-fame not far from where Jason Baker and Richard Lullen were laid to rest.
COOPER: Ed joins me now from Atlanta. So this guy, Oakley, said he didn't kill them. So who does he think killed these guys?
LAVANDERA: Well, some of these guys, you have to remember. The story has been convoluted and so many different versions. That the victim's families are left wondering just to exactly who is telling the truth.
But Oakley points to two people that he said were never properly vetted by prosecutors and investigators at the time. They were pushed out that way. But the bottom line is here is that there was Oakley and Sweeney and perhaps Louis himself who were involved with Baker and Luller.
And those two were left dead in the streets. It tells you that there were never witnesses who actually saw someone brandish a knife. Many of these witnesses were just simply discredited on the witness stand. So there was never anyone who came forward and said I saw the knife and saw who had the knife.
COOPER: This guy, Oakley, doesn't do himself any favors in terms of credibility, by constantly just trying to pitch his book. I mean, they are not answering the questions.
LAVANDERA: No question. It was a rough interview and it was interesting. He hasn't really spoken publicly about that night in 13 years. He says he is trying to clear his name. He walks away and says look. They feel vindicated. The jury acquitted them and the prosecution dropped the charges against Ray Lewis and they are trying to move beyond.
COOPER: Ed Lavandera, appreciate it. Coming up, video of a snowmobile accident at the Winter X Games. The runaway snowmobile didn't hit anyone else. It could have been worse. We'll hear from the guy who was on that snow mobile next.
COOPER: The X Games featuring extreme sports are under scrutiny tonight after string of accident at the Winter X Games in Aspen, Colorado. One snowmobiler is in critical condition, another has a separated pelvis. A free style skier suffered a spinal fracture and a snowmobiler was lucky that he wasn't hurt during this accident.
Take a look at this, trying to do a back flip. The snowmobile got away from him actually veered off into a crowd of fans. He was taken for evaluation. Thankfully the runaway snowmobile did not hit anyone in the crowd.
I spoke with Jacko Strong about the accident, about the safety of the games.
COOPER: So Jack, first of all, I'm glad that you and obviously everyone in the crowd are OK. Can you just take me through what happened? How it did go so wrong?
JACKO STRONG, SNOWMOBILER: It sent me into the air with that trick. I kind of push off my left hand to spin around and finally I came away pretty lucky. I was lucky that I didn't hit anyone in the crowd. My mom was standing right there too.
COOPER: What is going through your mind?
STRONG: For someone when you get that going, you get the adrenaline setting in. You can pretty much make or break you. So, I'm a bike rider by trade and it was coming down a lot.
COOPER: You could also been hit by the snowmobile.
STRONG: I was lucky that I didn't have to get hit by the sled and I was lucky --
COOPER: Do you think there has been some criticism that there's not enough protection for spectators in events like this. Do you think there needs to be more protection? Do you think it's generally pretty safe.
STRONG: I think it pretty safe really. You know, I think maybe something that could be done, but I think it is rare that this would happen. Pretty much it doesn't happen that much.
COOPER: I also want to ask you about your fellow snowmobiler Caleb Moore. He suffered a really terrible accident in the X Games last week. Do you know how he's doing?
STRONG: Yes. He is in -- and I've been speaking with family and he is still in pretty good condition. That's all I can say at the moment, but we were lucky enough to travel all around the world. And lucky we are going to auction of my sled and my official -- and they are going to go towards Caleb to help out with his recovery.
COOPER: Well, we certainly wish him the best and I'm glad that you are OK. Jacko Strong, thank you so much.
STRONG: Thank you very much, guys.
COOPER: Scary stuff. Let's get the latest on some of the stories that we are following. Randi is back with the 360 news and business bulletin -- Randi.
KAYE: Anderson, Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey is denying allegations that he had contact with prostitutes during trips to a luxury resort in the Dominican Republican. The FBI has raided the office of a Florida doctor who was a contributor to the Menendez campaign. Menendez acknowledged he has flown on the doctor's corporate jet, but it's unclear whether the raids have anything to do at all with Senator Menendez.
A 360 follow now. Place say one of the owners of the nightclub in Brazil where 250 people died, tried to kill himself while in custody. The owner was under police guard in a hospital where he is being treated for smoke inhalation. Police say they found him trying to hang himself in the shower. Four people were arrested in the aftermath of that fire.
The man who made up Manti Te'O's fake girlfriend told to Dr. Phil that he felt a deep romantic love for Te'O. Dr. Phil said he asked Ronaiah Tuaisosopo whether he is gay and he said, yes and then quote, "I am confused."
Toyota is recalling more than a million cars because of faulty airbags and windshield wipers. The recall affects Corolla and Corolla Matrix models sold in 2003 and 2004 and Lexus models sold between 2006 and 2012.
Anderson, check this out. The seventh grade class of Pambro Community Middle School in Massachusetts has 16 sets of twins and triplets and they are all in the same grade. And that ties the Guinness World Record and also interesting only three sets are actually identical.
COOPER: Is that a coincidence.
KAYE: I guess. Pretty cool, though.
COOPER: Randi, thanks very much. Coming up, what would a Superbowl party be without $16,000 worth of chicken wings? The "Ridiculist" is next.
COOPER: Time now for the "Ridiculist." Tonight, we got a story from Georgia where police say two employees of a cold storage facility outside of Atlanta broke in and stole, wait for it, $65,000 worth of chicken wings.
Police said the two guys rented a truck and backed it up to the bay doors and used a forklift to unload ten pallets of frozen chicken wings. Now think about that, $65,000 worth of hot wings -- they are hot wings because they were stolen.
I cannot even really conceptualize how many chicken wings you get for $65,000 other than apparently you need a forklift to do it. Luckily, a reporter from WGCL was kind enough to break it down for us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This bag of Tyson frozen chicken wings is $12.50. So that is $65,000 worth of chicken divided by $12.50 times five, that is 26,000 pounds of frozen chicken wings.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: It's 26,000 pounds. I still can really picture it, but it does beg the question why, why would someone need that many chicken wings? Local residents are understandably concerned.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are we out of the wings is it a total loss?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: First thought, you going to need some hot sauce with that.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The $65,000 of chicken wings.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sounds like a well planned heist to me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That is a pretty sound theory, 26,000 pounds of wings would be quite the center piece for one heck of a blow out Superbowl party and it was well timed because chicken wings are at an all time high price this year according to the National Chicken Council.
They say that Americans will eat 1.23 billion wings over the Superbowl weekend enough to stretch from San Francisco to Baltimore 27 times. Suddenly 26,000 pounds of stolen wings, it seems poultry, in comparison.
Maybe those guys were just trying to realize a dream of opening a small of hooters. Do you know that you are eating chicken wings the wrong way? The way to get the most out of chicken wing is not just cream it sloppily in blue cheese dressing and then (inaudible) like some caveman. I guess, you're supposed to debone it, but don't take it from me, take it from an expert.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You pick up the wings on either end and pull in opposite directions. A little twist, and twist, and pull and hooters, the wing is our thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That is my gift from me to you before you get down with more than a billion chicken wings this weekend. Now you can do it the civilized hooter's approved way. This year, you won't be just winging it.
That does it for us. We'll be back one hour from now another edition of 360 at 10 p.m. Eastern join us for that. "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT" starts right now.