Return to Transcripts main page
ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Oklahoma Aftermath; Boston Bombing Suspect Implicated in Triple Murder; Tornado Survivor Remembers Husband; Comfort Dogs: The Calm After the Storm; Deadly Meat Cleaver Attack in London, Terrorism Suspected
Aired May 22, 2013 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening, everyone. It's 9:00 Central time here in Moore, Oklahoma, where today we have seen an outpouring of love and support for the survivors of the storm here today.
I saw hundreds of people here from Oklahoma City and surrounding areas who have come here with shovels and brooms to help start to clean up. And the cleanup has already begun here.
We have been talking to some remarkable people today who made it through the tornado. You're going to hear from them tonight, as well as the heroes who helped them. We honor them all tonight, as well as we honor those who lost their lives. We're learning about the 24 lives that were lost. And we want to tell you about them, some of them, tonight.
We begin though tonight with breaking news. CNN now has just confirmed some information about the Boston bombing. Authorities are now making a direct connection between the dead Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev and the triple homicide back in 2011 that left a close friend of his dead.
We talked a lot about that back when the bombings occurred. It comes after an acquaintance of Tamerlan Tsarnaev reportedly confessed to taking part in those killings, before authorities say he was attacked and was shot dead by an FBI agent who was interviewing him.
Susan Candiotti has been working her sources. She joins us now.
So, Susan, what's the latest on this?
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, hi, Anderson.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev is now linked to those vicious triple murders outside Boston in 2011. That's what's being confirmed to us by a federal law enforcement official, the link allegedly coming from a man who is being questioned today by the FBI and Massachusetts State Police.
Now, that man's name is Ibragim Todashev. A law enforcement official tells me he fingered Tamerlan Tsarnaev in the triple murders, described to me as drug-related. We have mug shots of Todashev from two unrelated road rage case in both Orlando and Boston. Now, Todashev was fatally shot at his home in Orlando during a confrontation with the FBI right after he confessed to the triple murders. Sources tell me it was self-defense. A law enforcement source tells my colleague Deb Feyerick the man attacked the agent with a knife. An FBI team is in Orlando reviewing what happened. And, Anderson, that's standard operates procedure in any FBI shooting.
COOPER: Do we have any idea what the motive was for these triple murders? It was drug-related?
CANDIOTTI: Yes, my sources tells me it involved some kind of a drug ripoff and that Tamerlan and his friend didn't want to risk getting caught, so they killed them.
COOPER: Is there any connection between the dead man in Orlando and the Boston bombing?
CANDIOTTI: Well, if there is, Anderson, the FBI hasn't found a link so far.
But agents first became interested in this man because my source tells me they came up with leads that Tamerlan and his younger brother, Dzhokhar, knew the Chechen in Orlando. Now, the Chechen -- and he was granted political asylum here in 2008 -- used to live in Boston just like the Tsarnaevs did. Agents were checking out anyone who knew the Tsarnaev brothers.
Now, our CNN affiliate WCVB says the FBI looked at this apartment near Boston, where Todashev lived shortly after the marathon bombing and they also came up with other leads, including cell phone connections between Tamerlan and the dead man in Orlando.
Our Ashleigh Banfield has also been reporting on the Massachusetts State Police then getting involved.
COOPER: Is the FBI looking at the men in Orlando and Tamerlan Tsarnaev for any radicalization links?
CANDIOTTI: Yes, we do know that all three men had checked out a martial arts Web site and online forum. And so had a "Russian Canadian boxer turned jihadist" William Plotnikov.
You remember that we told you about him before. The FBI has been investigating links between him and Tamerlan, because Tamerlan was in Russia last year, and came home to Boston right after Plotnikov was killed by Russian forces. And the FBI has been checking to see whether Tamerlan met with him while he was there in Russia.
COOPER: It's a fascinating development today on this, Susan. I appreciate the reporting.
There's another terror-related story that we're following later in this hour, really a horrific murder, brazen murder on the streets of London, a meat cleaver and kitchen knife found in the bloody hands of the man accused of doing this killing, a chilling image, a truly horrific crime. He made this video allegedly after butchering a man in the streets. We will tell you more about that later in the hour.
Now the news here in Moore, Oklahoma, the injured speaking out, more heroes coming forward. There's a lot of inspiration to see here. There's also the deepest of grieving, at least a dozen people killed; 10 of those are children, seven at Plaza Towers Elementary.
And we got really our first up-close look at Plaza Towers Elementary School today. And the sight, it just breaks your heart. We're learning a little about the kids who died there, learning about their lives, their friends, their passions.
And before I go any further tonight, I just want to tell you a little bit about their stories, the little that we know. Some of the grownups as well who lost their lives, we want to honor them as best we can with the information we have.
Tawauna Robinson lived just a block away from Plaza Towers Elementary. With the storm bearing down from inside a closet, she called her daughter Angeletta. She described her situation. She said I love you and then the phone went dead. Tawauna Robinson was 45 years old.
Terri Long loved aviation, we're told. She worked for the FAA. She was an air safety specialist. Terri Long was 49. She died in the storm.
Megan Futrell was 29. She riding out the storm in the cooler of a 7- Eleven. Her cousin describes her as the sister she never had. And this is Case Futrell. He was in his mom Megan's arms when he died. Four months old, he had a lifetime of stories to tell, lifetime of memories still ahead of him. They died together.
Kyle Davis was a rock of a little boy, everyone says. His friends nicknamed him "The Wall." He got good grades in schools. He loved monster trucks. Kyle was just 8 years old, one of seven children who died at Plaza Towers.
This is Antonia Candelaria. She was 9 years old. She leaves behind two sisters, two sisters who loved her so very much. Nicolas McCabe was a third grader at Plaza Towers. He's described as a vibrant 9- year-old, full of life, full of smiles, as he is in that picture. He loved LEGOs.
We met Janae Hornsby's just yesterday. He called her a ball of energy and love. He still can't believe she's gone. Neither can Janae's cousin, who tells her mother, "I don't want to say I'm crazy, but maybe she's going to call me."
The first thing that people noticed about Sydney Marie Angle was her eyes and her smile. She loved playing softball, pitched her first game recently. She loved her dogs Bundy (ph) and Charlie (ph), and she loved her classmates at Plaza Towers and they loved her. They died together. She died surrounded by that love, which is at least a comforting thought. Sydney Marie Angle was also just 9 years old.
Again, seven kids at that school died, 10 children that we know about in all. Another victim, Shannon Quick, was 40 years old. She was also a mom. She leaves behind two sons, ages 8 and 13. They were all together when the storm hit. Her 8-year-old son was hurt. He's in the intensive care right now. He had surgery today. His leg is badly injured, his pelvis broken as well. His grandmother was injured as well, Shannon's mom, Joy Waldroop.
We met Shannon's mom, Joy, and listened to her today at the hospital. She wanted to talk about her daughter. She wanted to talk about what her daughter went through. She was at Integris Hospital in Oklahoma City, where she is recovering, and she was sitting next to her daughter-in-law.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: How long did it feel like it went on for?
JOY WALDROOP, VICTIM: Five or 10 minutes at least.
COOPER: And were you able to speak to each other during it or...
WALDROOP: I just remember hollering, asking God to keep us safe.
But it -- and then it took the wall, the ceiling, and then I could feel it suck the wall out from behind us. And it felt like it was trying to somersault me, kind of had me all rolled up in a ball. (INAUDIBLE) something hard come and hit me on the bottom of the foot. I remember that. I don't remember anything hitting my arm.
COOPER: Did you lose consciousness?
WALDROOP: I may have for just an instant, because the first recollection I have is Tanner, my oldest grandson.
He was standing up. The boys call me Ma, instead of grandma. I have always been to them. He goes, Ma, are you OK? Ma, are you OK? Please be OK. And I don't know how long he had been hollering at me.
But I was kind of able to push myself up. I can't move that arm, but I kind of used my elbow to push up. And when I saw Shannon, I started yelling for somebody to come help. And just a neighbor person came over there and called 911. They couldn't -- it was so bad, they couldn't get ambulances up in there to help her.
COOPER: As soon as you saw her, you knew she was in bad shape?
WALDROOP: Yes. (INAUDIBLE) There was gas everywhere, and there was a fire over in there I just knew was going to get blown up.
COOPER: Were you able to talk to her?
WALDROOP: She kept saying she was -- she couldn't breathe.
And I think her lungs was filling up with fluid. She kept saying, Tanner, Jackson, Tanner, Jackson. I told her they were OK, just to lay real still. She kept saying she wanted to turn over, so she could breathe better.
COOPER: What did you say to her?
WALDROOP: I told her she had to lay still so she didn't cause any worse injuries.
COOPER: When did you find out she had passed away?
WALDROOP: Well, the EMT guy was over there, and she had been holding on to his pant leg. He was standing next to her. And she had her fingers gripped on his pant leg. And he kept talking to her, and all of a sudden her arm went limp.
And he had taken -- some military guy had taken his shirt off, and he had had that over her chest to kind of keep her warm, and he pulled it up over her face. I kept telling him she wasn't gone, that she was breathing.
COOPER: What do you want people to know about Shannon?
WALDROOP: I think the people that know her already know about her. She was so good. There's not a soul that doesn't love her.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A loving mother.
COOPER: She loved her kids.
It's still so, so hard, so hard to believe. Thank you for taking the time to talk to us. I appreciate it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Tanner's doing OK, her grand -- Joy's grandson, Shannon's son. But Jackson, as I said, had surgery today. He's going to need a lot more surgeries down the road.
A fund has been set up to help the Quick and Waldroop family. You can contribute if you want by going to www.gofundme.com/30mh60. Again, the address, you can see it at the bottom of the screen, is www.gofundme.com/30mh60.
One other note along those lines. Last night, a viewer saw our interview with Janae Hornsby's dad and her aunt. Hearing them talk about their sweet and wonderful little girl moved them deeply, so much they got in touch with us. They wanted to pay for Janae's funeral. We contacted and connected them with the Hornsby family. And we thank them for their big heart.
We have got a very full hour ahead. There's so much to tell you about what's happening here in Moore.
John King got an up-close look at Plaza Towers Elementary School, really our first look at the devastation there. You will see what he saw, some of it really beyond belief, amazing that anyone survived from there at all.
Also, country music's Toby Keith shows me the town he grew up in. He lives here, the town he still lives in, his hometown, Moore, Oklahoma.
COOPER: Welcome back. We're here live in Moore, Oklahoma.
Plaza Towers Elementary School, which you have heard so much about, where seven of those children died, really got a direct hit from a tornado here in Moore. The helicopter video at the scene right after the impact was -- was horrifying, the change flattened, third graders missing under all that rubble.
Parents waited hour after hour well into the night as rescuers desperately searched for their kids, hoping they would be found alive. And, as I said, we now know seven of the kids did not survive.
We have not been able to see up close how just totally destroyed the school was until today.
John King toured the ruins with Sergeant Jeremy Lewis of the Moore Police Department, who himself grew up here in town. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SGT. JEREMY LEWIS, MOORE POLICE DEPARTMENT: This is more classrooms back here. This was the gymnasium here.
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So -- was the gym a separate building or was it attached somehow?
LEWIS: The gym was separate.
KING: You go across this driveway to get to the gymnasium building?
KING: And so the classroom buildings would have ended here?
KING: That's what all this is. Wow.
LEWIS: The school kind of went in a U. It came out this way, right here. It went -- that was the back corner right there.
KING: Right. So come around like a U. Get it.
LEWIS: Then there was another building separately out there. There were some portables out there, which, of course, didn't withstand anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: Well, that kind of destruction that John King found at Plaza Towers Elementary was also found at Brianna Elementary School here in Moore, total destruction.
Amazingly, everyone at Briarwood, students, teachers, and staff, they got out alive.
I'm joined by Susan Pierce, public school superintendent here in Moore.
Thank you so much for being with us.
SUSAN PIERCE, SUPERINTENDENT, MOORE PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Thank you.
COOPER: It is a miracle so many kids did survive, and when you look at Briarwood, when you look at Towers.
And that's really a testament I think to a lot of the preparation and also the teachers and the principals.
PIERCE: It's absolutely to the credit of our school staff and our teachers. They do such wonderful work every day.
And this is just an example of how they actually performed the protocol and procedures that we have in place. They put themselves between the children and harm's way, and did the very best they could to account for the safety of their students. This is a practice that we -- a protocol that we practice all the time, several times a year.
COOPER: I think teachers are heroes all around the country, but we really see it in a time like this.
PIERCE: Absolutely. Absolutely. Absolutely. They have done a wonderful job.
COOPER: I have gotten a lot of texts from people saying why aren't there shelters in all the schools? In new schools, are there -- are shelters being built, or is it just in old schools that they're not?
PIERCE: There has been of course a focus on that in recent years and looking at safe rooms in schools.
After the 1999 tornado here, when Westmoore High School was rebuilt, and when Kelley Elementary was rebuilt from the ground up, FEMA assisted us in putting safe rooms and safe hallways in those schools. Plaza Towers, for example, was built in 1965, and Briarwood in the 1980s.
And at that time, that kind of technology or equipment was not available. And so we didn't have that in those schools.
COOPER: Is there a hope that, or would you like to see older schools retrofitted? Or is that just -- I talked to the mayor, who said that, economically, he's even not sure that's possible.
PIERCE: Economically, it would be very hard. Would we love to see it? Absolutely, we would love to see that, and we will review all of the information available to us at the time. The retrofit for older buildings is expensive and has to be planned for and done in a systematic way.
We have 32 school sites with various buildings on the school sites. And so it is something we have looked at and will continue to look at in the future. I understand there's some legislation being proposed.
COOPER: You had a meeting today. I think it was 3,000 people.
PIERCE: Yes, we did.
COOPER: How did that go? What were the response you were hearing? What were people saying to you?
PIERCE: The response was one that I expected from this community, where I have grown up, this community that I love. We're a very strong and resilient school community and community.
We work very hard for each other, try to support each other in all things. And this is just the perfect example of everyone working together as we work to build back our schools and our community.
COOPER: And you're retiring now?
PIERCE: I am retiring.
COOPER: But you are going to stay on, because there's still a lot of need.
PIERCE: I will be here. I am a member of this community above and beyond being the superintendent. I have lived here for the most part of my life, when my parents moved here in 1960. And I have been with the school district for 25 years. This is my home. And I will stay here and work.
COOPER: Well, so, you started when you were 5 years old? That's correct, OK.
PIERCE: That's correct, absolutely. Thank you.
COOPER: That's how you have been able to do it for 25 years.
PIERCE: Thank you.
COOPER: Well, listen, I'm so glad that so many kids did make it out.
PIERCE: And we are counting our blessings, and, of course, grieving with and supporting those families that lost their children.
COOPER: Yes. Susan Pierce, thank you so much. We really appreciate it.
PIERCE: Thank you.
COOPER: Thanks for all your hard work.
PIERCE: Thank you. Thank you.
COOPER: For more on this story on the school angle, you can go to CNN.com.
Up next, country music star Toby Keith is from Moore, lives here still, gives us a tour of his hometown, what's left of it. We're here with him as he gets up -- an up-close look at the damage and talks about how this community keeps coming back time after time. They get knocked down, but they stand up, and they stand up stronger and more together than ever before.
Also, a husband and father remembered. A grieving family shares their memories of human bonding, 65 years old. He was with his wife when the twister hit. He was in her arms. She says he had a bright light that wouldn't be put out and he will be with her for the rest of her life.
COOPER: Welcome back to live reporting from Moore, Oklahoma.
The devastation here, it is so extensive, it's almost hard to believe that so many people were able to survive. It's such a blessing. It appears that quick action right after the twister hit, neighbors searching and digging for their neighbors, played a role in helping people make it through.
We know more than 100 people were pulled alive from the rubble.
One man in Moore who may have saved a life is a man named Juan Olivo. Take a look at the CNN iReport video he sent.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is anybody here? You can smell the gas. Watch out. Is there anybody here? Yes, take them over here. Is there anybody here? Oh, my God.
Is there anybody here? Can you say something? Can you say something, please? Is there anybody here? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. (INAUDIBLE)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Got a dog? Can you hear him?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there anybody here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) that way, bro.
Over here, over here. Hey, over here. Where at?
Where you at?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to get you. We're going to get you. Hey, hey. Somebody in here. There's somebody in here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going for help.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We got help.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Help is right here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, this is the man who Juan Olivo helped save.
It took him and others five to 10 minutes to dig him out. Olivo never learned his name.
Home looks very different today for country start and Moore, Oklahoma, native Toby Keith. We walked with him through what was once a busy neighborhood and talked about how this community has come back time after time from devastating tornadoes.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: What's it like for you to see this place like this?
TOBY KEITH, MUSICIAN: It ain't nothing I haven't seen before. Growing up here my whole life, 35, 40 years, was -- we have seen this a lot. So, it's pretty much the same. It gets you right here every time.
COOPER: It seems like -- I have seen a lot of it, too, but every time it get -- every time, it seems like different. Every time, it's -- you never get used to it.
KEITH: Well, no, it's a different path every time.
This -- we're about two miles south of where the last one, a mile-and- a-half south of where the big one in '99 fell. But there was one the day before this one that knocked Shawnee out that no one talked about. But those people up there, if you ask them, theirs is just as devastating. It looks like this up there too in places. So, it's part of living in the Plains.
COOPER: It seems like everywhere we go, we see people trying to salvage whatever they can, the possessions of their house, whatever they can get out of the rubble.
Well, my sister, my sister-in-law and my niece all got hit. And if your house looks like something like that, where you still got a structure left, if you can get a shot of that, then you get most of your possessions back.
KEITH: The insurance company will fix your house. If you have a storm shelter, which you should have, then you're rocking. It all comes back.
COOPER: It does seem -- this is -- we're on basically the foundation -- this is a slab of someone's foundation. Obviously, they didn't have a basement. It seems -- I think a lot of people who don't live here are surprised to hear that people don't have -- not everybody has storm shelters. They're expensive.
KEITH: Well, if you go into the -- if you go into the neighborhoods, a lot of people that can't afford them will have them, and then three or four people won't. And then one -- and they will share. Everyone knows where the closest shelter is.
So, if you asked somebody that survived it that got it and they had a shelter, their neighbors were in there with them.
COOPER: I talked to a woman today in the hospital who was holding on to her 65-year-old husband. He got sucked out of her arms and died.
And she said, I'm going to rebuild in the place because I got my neighbors. I will never find neighbors any -- like this anywhere else in the world.
KEITH: I know. It -- last night, I was -- I got here and went straight to my sister's house we got her boarded in. And we got her roof covered and everything.
And I was standing doing an interview. And this lady goes, he's standing in front of my car. And it's -- you're like, what? And she's like, it's neat you're standing in front of my car. I said, is this your house? She is like, yes, I lived through it. And she was happy, uplifting. And you're like, I can't believe you're this happy.
She says, what else you going to do, rebuild it? It didn't hit me for 31 years. I'm going to rebuild and live right here. This is my home.
So, it's like that's the part that makes you go, that's my neighbor.
COOPER: Toby, thank you.
KEITH: Yes, my pleasure.
COOPER: That was a pleasure. Thanks.
KEITH: Thanks for covering it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: And we saw neighbors coming out to help today, hundreds of people all around this town coming with shovels and rakes and brooms just to clean up in ways large and small. And that just began today, and it's going to be continuing for days and days to come.
As we've been reporting, there are a lot of grieving families here tonight in Moore and surrounding areas. Every person who did not survive has a story. They were young, they were old, boys and girls, husbands and wives. People who were loved. And a lot of them, that even though they're grieving right now, and even though some of them are in the hospital, even still in their hospital beds, they want you to know about their loved one who didn't make it. They want you to know about the life they lived, about the kind of person they were.
Today I was lucky enough to meet the family of Hement Bhonde. He was lost, and his home was destroyed. His wife survived and was injured. She's now hospitalized. Her courage, her spirit are really remarkable. I spoke to her and her daughter at Inverness Hospital in Oklahoma City.
COOPER: Do you remember what happened during the tornado?
JERRIE BHONDE, TORNADO SURVIVOR: My husband and I went to our middle room, which is -- normally in Oklahoma you go to your middle bathroom, where there's no windows or -- and I heard -- I heard it coming. But I thought, "Well, it will just take the windows."
I felt like I was in a blender.
COOPER: Like you were in a blender?
BHONDE: That's the best way to describe it. The walls just kind of came down on me, and they just kind of swirled. And I held onto my husband as long as I could. And he just flew into space.
COOPER: You actually -- you felt him flying away?
BHONDE: Yes, and I don't know where he went.
COOPER: Were you speaking to each other during the storm?
COOPER: What were you saying?
BHONDE: Well, he -- he was telling me how much he loved me, and I said, "I love you." And the whole house just went.
COOPER: The whole house all around you?
BHONDE: It's gone.
COOPER: Were things hitting you?
BHONDE: Yes. You see, I'm cut all over.
COOPER: That's how you got the abrasions on your face?
BHONDE: And that's the least of it.
COOPER: You were saying you feel like your husband flew to heaven?
BHONDE: I do. I haven't -- I have no -- I know he's taken care of.
COOPER: And that gives you peace?
BHONDE: Yes. And I know I was left on earth. I have a few broken ribs and I -- you know, a lot of cuts, but I was left on earth because I still have work to do.
COOPER: How are you doing?
GEETA ROBLES, DAUGHTER OF HEMENT BHONDE: OK. You know, we talked about the outlooks and everything, and then, you know, very positive. And I said, "Dad was positive. He wouldn't want us to be crying." And right now it's -- you know, now it's staying positive and knowing that he is in a better place, not in pain any more, and -- stock exchange in the sky is where he is probably.
COOPER: He liked the stock exchange?
ROBLES: He's a big stock market guy. Yes.
COOPER: Where will you go from here?
BHONDE: I'm doing good. And my daughter will be here to help me. My mother, my sister and all my friends. And just beautiful, beautiful people. At a time like this, is when you find out how much your friends mean.
COOPER: All the stuff that's small and insignificant kind of slips away at a time like this?
COOPER: Well, I'm glad you're alive and surrounded by loved ones.
BHONDE: And I know my husband's with me. You understand, he had a bright light that wouldn't be put out. And he'll be with me for the rest of my life.
COOPER: Thank you.
BHONDE: You're welcome.
COOPER: Thanks for talking to us.
COOPER: She also wanted people to know that she just -- she feels surrounded by love. Love from friends and her neighbors and the community, and that love is the most important thing. She wanted to get that message across. That was her daughter, Geeta, as well.
They're the calm after the storm. Coming up, I want you to meet some Golden Retrievers who are bringing hope, and light and comfort to the littlest survivors here in Moore. You're going to meet them live on the program.
Also, a frightening and brazen murder on the streets of London. A soldier is dead. The suspect delivers a bizarre message on video about the motive.
COOPER: President Obama will travel to Oklahoma this Sunday for a firsthand look at the tornado damage and recovery efforts. But tonight, during an awards ceremony at the White House, the president paused to pay tribute to those who lost so much here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Of course, as we gather tonight to present this award, our thoughts and prayers remain with the wonderful people of Oklahoma. They have suffered mightily this week, and while the road ahead will be long, their country will be with them every step of the way. That's who we are, and that's how we treat our family and friends and our neighbors, wherever they are at the country.
So we're going to help them recover. We're going to help them rebuild for as long as it takes. And eventually, life will go on and new memories will be made. And new laughter will come, new songs will be sung.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: In a lot of places here in Moore, new memories are already being made, thanks to a special group whose job is to be the calm after the storm. Comfort dogs. Gary Tuchman was with them as they visited some of the youngest victims of this tornado.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Six Golden Retrievers and their handlers, on a mission to help, in a way only dogs can.
(on camera): This is the children's hospital at the Oklahoma University Medical Center, and these are the comfort dogs. They've come here to comfort. This Becca, and this is Ruthie. And this is Barnabas, the oldest of the dogs here, 3 years old, a veteran. Kai. This is Zeke -- their name pad's up here. I can't always see them. And this is Lila. And Lila is the youngest of the group. She's only 9 months old. She's in training.
(voice-over): These dogs are trained and sponsored by Lutheran Church Charities. Only the most obedient and docile dogs qualify. They show up at national disasters, like the Oklahoma tornado, to help comfort victims.
Eight-year-old Courtney Brown, a second grade student at the Plaza Towers Elementary school, fractured her skull in the tornado.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hi, Courtney. This is Ruthie.
COURTNEY BROWN, TORNADO SURVIVOR: Hi, Ruthie.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): Courtney went to the same school where seven other children were killed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you have peanut butter today? She's sniffing peanut butter.
TUCHMAN: Courtney's dad sits beside his daughter, so grateful she's alive and able to talk to Ruthie and Ruthie's handler.
BROWN: I'm sorry about how my school was -- was destroyed by the tornado.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you want to tell? Sure.
BROWN: OK. I was on the ground, and I was on my knees and doing this, and I hit my head on the back.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There you go.
TUCHMAN: But it's not only children and not only victims that comfort dogs visit. Many of the doctors and nurses want to see them, too. Courtney, who broke her arm before the tornado, says she got to visit with two comfort dogs, Ruthie and Lila.
(on camera): You know, Lila's only nine months old. She's a puppy, and she's the same size as Ruthie.
BROWN: I know.
TUCHMAN: Isn't that amazing?
BROWN: I think she was smaller.
TUCHMAN: A little smaller. But she's still bigger than you.
BROWN: True. If she was on two legs. TUCHMAN: Maybe next time she can come standing on her two legs and walk through the door.
(voice-over): The comfort dogs have indeed greatly comforted Courtney and plenty of other victims in this hospital.
BROWN: I like doggies.
TUCHMAN: Canine mission accomplished.
Gary Tuchman, CNN, Oklahoma City.
COOPER: And that little girl's own dog is missing, so it's such a comfort to have that dog with her.
Joining me now is Tim Hetzner, one of the comfort dog handlers with Lutheran Church Charities. This is Kai?
TIM HETZNER, COMFORT DOG HANDLER, LUTHERAN CHURCH CHARITIES: This is Kai.
COOPER: How old is Kai?
HETZNER: Kai is 2.
COOPER: Two years old.
COOPER: It's got to be the most rewarding job imaginable. I was saying earlier, in our 8 p.m. hour, that one day when I get fired from the world of TV, as I'm sure inevitably I will be, I would love to do your job. Because it's got to just be extraordinary.
HETZNER: It's rewarding to help people. And to help people during difficult times. And that's the rewarding part of it. Emotional, too, but it's -- it is rewarding. And to watch what God can do through them.
COOPER: How much training does Kai get?
HETZNER: We start training at five weeks, and they spend one -- we spend one year in training the dogs.
COOPER: And they're so -- I mean, Golden Retrievers are so calm. They're fantastic.
HETZNER: They're lovers.
HETZNER: They're lovers.
COOPER: What do -- what do you think the kids get out of it? Because it's really not just kids; I mean, it's doctors; it's everybody.
HETZNER: All. Teachers...
COOPER: Everybody gravitates toward these animals. I've seen them in Newtown. I've seen them all over.
HETZNER: They show unconditional love. They're confidential. They're safe, and -- and I think they help people feel accepted. And when that happens, it lowers their blood rate, and they feel more comfortable to share what's happening. A big part of healing is to be able to talk about what's happened.
COOPER: It was amazing seeing that little girl in the hospital wanting to talk to the dog about what she had been through.
HETZNER: Many times, people will talk to a dog. People will talk to...
COOPER: Is that right? Really?
HETZNER: Yes. Because dogs are good listeners.
HETZNER: We humans always think we have to say something or give answers to questions. We have to listen. The dogs' advice to people in the world: bark less.
COOPER: Bark less. Do you have plans to go to other hospitals in the area?
HETZNER: Yes, hospitals and schools and children and victims.
COOPER: How do you -- how do you -- who pays for this? How does -- how does this happen?
HETZNER: We never charge the people we serve. And so we come in, and we rely on donors to help us with our expenses.
COOPER: I'm sure there's a lot of folks that would like to donate. How do you -- how do you go about donating?
HETZNER: Go to our Web site, LutheranChurchCharities.org.
HETZNER: Yes. And, yes, you can go there, and you can help them.
COOPER: And how long do you stay in a place?
HETZNER: As long as they need us. In Newtown, we still have dogs every day in Newtown.
HETZNER: Since it opened up. COOPER: So how many dogs do you have nationwide?
HETZNER: We have 70 as of this moment in eight states. OK. That will soon be ten.
HETZNER: We can't keep up with the breeding. I have to have a pep talk with my breeding dogs.
COOPER: Is that right? Well, I'm going to send you a resume someday, something I'd love to do. I'd really love to.
HETZNER: Please do. We would love to have you.
COOPER: All right. So it's Luther Charities...
COOPER: ... Church Charities dog org if you want to donate.
Thank you so much.
HETZNER: Thank you so much.
COOPER: Thank you so much. It's incredible.
Thanks, Kai. Thank you so much. Yes.
All right. There's a lot happening in the world tonight. Some just extraordinary developments overseas in England. Sheer terror on the streets in a suburb of London, as a killer hacked a man to death and then casually explained why he did it. We'll be right back.
COOPER: Terrorism led the program this evening. The connection authorities now believe exists between the dead Boston bombing suspect and a grizzly triple slashing back in 2011. A triple homicide.
It wasn't the only terror story. This terror plain and simple in England. As chilling an image as you will ever see. A meat cleaver in the hands of a man. Also a kitchen knife in his hands.
Just seconds earlier, on the streets of a London neighborhood, Woolwich, this man and an accomplice reportedly chanting "Allah Akbar," "God is great," and hacked a man to death. The victim believed to be a British soldier from a nearby post.
Police say the two men knocked him down with a car, descended on him with knives, and cleavers and a gun, and then dumped his body in the road.
Then, almost unbelievably, one of the killers approached onlookers and made a statement.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We swear by the almighty Allah, we will never stop fighting you until you leave us alone. We must fight them as they fight us, an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. We -- I apologize that women had to witness this today. But in our land, our women have to see the same. You people will never be safe. Remove your government; they don't care about you. You think David Cameron is going to get caught in the street when we start busting our guns? Do you think the politicians are going to die? No, it's going to be the average guy like you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: It's absolutely sickening. He and his partner then waited for police, reportedly attacked them, and were shot and wounded.
They're in custody now, Britain's government quick to call the murder an act of terrorism. Prime Minister David Cameron sounding a defiant note.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CAMERON, U.K. PRIME MINISTER: We have suffered these attacks before. We have always beaten them back. We've done that through a combination of vigilance, of security, of security information, of good policing, but above all, the way we've beaten them back is showing an absolutely indomitable British spirit. That we will not be cowed, will never buckle under these shorts of attacks.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That's the broad outline. For more details, I spoke with Nic Robertson and Christiane Amanpour earlier.
COOPER: Christiane, what do you make of this? We have not seen this kind of attack, certainly, in England. There was the -- the filmmaker in -- in I think it was the Netherlands who got killed, I think, in a knife attack. British authorities haven't seen this kind of attack before, have they?
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN ANCHOR: Well, not in this particular manner, no. And it is really very bizarre, all of the security experts have been telling us throughout this day.
You know, the words that he's saying, this man who's been captured on cell-phone video, are almost exact replicas of what the 7-7 bombers said in their video that they left before they blew up the Underground and the buses. It's almost exact replica of what Dzhokhar Tsarnaev wrote on that boat that he was found in before, you know, the end of that manhunt. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.
But the question really is, are these people part of a bigger conspiracy, a bigger al Qaeda? And just about everybody that I've spoken to today says it does not look like that. This was very, very low tech. It seems to be home grown. It seems to be lone wolf, if you like, even copycat kind of crime. It is terror, because it is designed to terrorize and to create fear and panic, and these people even went so far, as you've seen, as to get themselves recorded.
Now, they have been captured alive. They've been taken into hospitals. They were obviously wounded when they confronted police. So presumably we'll hear a lot more about it.
But I think, Anderson, when we try to figure out what's going on after this more than decade-long war against al Qaeda, by and large, massive attacks on the homeland, massive al Qaeda spectacular attacks have not happened again since.
And intelligence experts always told us that what it was going to be would be al Qaeda affiliates and franchises like AQAT in Yemen, like AQIM in the Islamic Maghreb, Mali, et cetera. And also, onesies and twosies. This's exactly what people said, and this is what we're seeing, whether it's Boston or here today.
COOPER: And Nic, we don't know whether this person is a British citizen, whether they grew up in England. As you mentioned before, they have, certainly, what sounds like a distinctive English accent. Had there been any prior concern or intelligence about British soldiers being targeted on an individual basis on the streets of London, Nic?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Perhaps not the streets of London. We do know in a town just north of London, Newton, last year four men were convicted planning -- four Islamist radicals were convicted, planning to -- to load a car with explosives and drive it under remote control into an army barracks, the clear intent there to target soldiers of that barracks just outside of London.
And of course, a few years ago in Birmingham, about 100 miles from London, there was a plot to capture a former British soldier, a Pakistani-heritage, capture him and then execute him by beheading him online. Of course, that plot was interrupted. It has been the bigger, more spectacular of these types of plots that the police and the security services have been so successful in stopping.
And perhaps the realization is coming among the radicals now, that if they want to get below the radar, it has to be small, that big isn't working. Perhaps that's part of the picture. Certainly, it will be something that the security services here will be asking themselves on this style of attack, Anderson.
COOPER: Yes. Christiane Amanpour, appreciate the reporting. Nic Robertson as well.
COOPER: So disturbing to see a killer justifying what he's doing and asking people to videotape his statement.
There's a lot more happening tonight. Isha is here with a "360 News & Business Bulletin" -- Isha. ISHA SESAY, HLN ANCHOR: Anderson, the judge in the Jodi Arias trial sent the jurors back for more deliberations. This afternoon, they sent out a note saying they were having trouble receiving a unanimous vote on whether Arias should receive the death penalty. If they're to deadlock, a new jury will be chosen for this phase of the trial.
The Justice Department is now acknowledging American drone strikes killed four Americans overseas since 2009. A letter from Attorney General Eric Holder says that includes the 2011 strike on radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki.
AAA is predicting a decline in travel this Memorial Day. The group blames the shaky economy and a jump in airline fees. But despite the drop, AAA predicts nearly 35 million Americans will head out of town for the holiday.
And Anderson, the three kidnapped women rescued after years held captive in a Cleveland home say they are now happy and safe. The message coming from a lawyer representing Amanda Berry, Michelle Knight and Gina DeJesus. Their attorney went on to say they are overwhelmed by the public's support, and their healing process will require time and privacy.
We continue to wish them the best.
COOPER: Let's hope they get that time and privacy. Isha, thanks very much.
We'll be right back.
COOPER: Before we go, I just want to update you on our breaking news. A federal law enforcement official telling CNN that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the dead Boston bombing suspect, participated in a 2011 triple homicide. He took part, they say, with an acquaintance, Ibragim Todashev, who confessed to his direct role, but also fingered Tsarnaev in the killings.
He was being questioned about the slayings at his home in Orlando when authorities say he attacked an FBI agent, who then shot him dead.
That's all for this edition of 360. We'll be back here tomorrow from Oklahoma tomorrow night for more reporting.
"ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" is next.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: "OUTFRONT" next, seven school children killed during the tornado in Oklahoma. The mother of one of children says those deaths could have been avoided.