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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Negotiations Stalled on Jordan-ISIS Prisoner Swap; New Information on AirAsia Accident; Aaron Hernandez in Court; Charles Blow's Son Taken at Gunpoint by Police; More Snowy Weather for New York; Eating While Driving
Aired January 29, 2015 - 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: Hey, good evening. Thanks for joining us.
We begin tonight with (INAUDIBLE) late developments in the fight against terrorism that are seen by many has two threads in the same story. The negotiations now apparently stalled to swap a female terrorist for pair of ISIS captives, a Japanese journalist and a Jordanian fighter pilot.
That, an exclusive words to CNN that official suspect that one of these five Taliban Guantanamo detainees who were traded for the release of an American Bow Bergdahl has attempted to return to militant activity.
Chief national security correspondent Jim Sciutto is working both of those stories for now. He joins us now.
Let's talk about the possible deal first between Jordan and ISIS. Where does that stand?
JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, we're nearly 11 hours past the most recent deadline which was sundown local time there. And I'm told by officials in Jordan that they've been keeping a nervous tense wait for any news either way and they haven't had any news since then, either on the good side, proof of life. They've been waiting for proof of life for the pilot, have not had it through any stage of this negotiation, but also haven't had the bad news that everyone is dreading, was would be another video showing that the pilot or perhaps the Japanese journalist Mr. Goto have been killed. They don't have it. You have to think, Anderson, the more time passes, hope dims. But I'm told that they will keep hope right up to the final moment.
COOPER: So Jim, I mean, they have been told -- the Jordanians have been told they have to bring the female terrorist, the would-be suicide bomber, to the border for some sort of swap. Did they do that or are they waiting for proof of life?
SCIUTTO: No. They said from the beginning, they would not make any move close to a deal until they had the proof of life, any move including taking her to the border. In fact, what was interesting about the latest demand is they asked to take her to the border with Syria -- certainly with Turkey, rather, Syria's border with Turkey as opposed to the Jordanian border. They would have to fly her over there and do it to take the positive step. They refuse to take that step without proof of life.
COOPER: All right. I also want to ask you about this CNN reporting on one of the Taliban members has swapped out for Bowe Bergdahl possibly returning to militant activity. Obviously, that would be, you know, potentially significant and to be precise about exactly what this is. I mean, is it what it's not.
SCIUTTO: What it is, is that this first reported by Barbara Starr, that one of those five, there picture on the screen, we are not sure which one, communicated either by telephone or by email or chat rooms with a member of the Taliban in Afghanistan, which, and remember, this is being monitored by U.S. intelligence that they caught this communication, which they took as a signal this person was attempting or making arrangements to return to militancy, the person did not go to Afghanistan. Did not return to the militancy but reached out to take those steps and that's considered in violation of the agreement they had with these men while they were held in Qatar.
COOPER: All right, more to learn on that.
Jim Sciutto, appreciate it.
Joining us now is CNN national security analyst Fran Townsend, George W. Bush's former homeland security advisor. She currently serves on the department of Homeland security and the CIA external advisory boards, also former Navy Seal Dan O'Shea, coordinated the U.S. embassy's hostage working group in Baghdad during war, also Karima Bennoune, author of "Fatwa does not apply here," untold stories from the fight against Muslim fundamentalism.
Fran, first of all, what's your sense of how this prisoner swap is or, I guess, is not unfolding?
FRAN TOWNSEND, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTOR: You know, Anderson, we talked about this last night. And the fact that there's been no proof of life about the Jordanian pilot is frankly bodes pretty badly for how this all turns out. The fact is, we don't even know if this Jordanian pilot was still alive when the negotiations began. And as Jim Sciutto points out, the longer this goes on, the less likely it is that there's going to be any swap at all.
The Jordanians were absolutely right not to move her to the point for the swap without the proof of life. It's sort of standard here. There's no doubt they had the operational plans to be able to do it if they got that. They're under tremendous pressure from this very prominent family, the Jordanian pilot, to make this work if they can. But rightly didn't undertake the operation without proof of life.
COOPER: Dan, the fact that there's this public negotiation between Jordan, obviously, very close U.S. ally and this terror group, ISIS, does that change the equation for how the U.S. and maybe other countries in the region might have to deal with ISIS down the road?
DAN O'SHEA FORMER NAVY SEAL: This is, it's the future. This is so successful. They're already winning. They're winning the propaganda battle. I mean, Fran brings out the obvious facts that the whole world is demanding that something be done, just like James Foye and all these other previous Islamic state kidnapping situation where there is such pressure on the government by the families. And that very discussion, that fact that we are having these interviews and we are not the only network that is obviously focused on that, that means they're winning the propaganda battle.
So they are going to melt this for all its worth. And again, there is now positive signs that there is going to be some form of a prisoner swap at this stage. Time will tell.
COOPER: Karina, I mean, the fact that the prison on ISIS is trying to get released is a female terrorist, you believe that's very significant in terms of propaganda moves by ISIS.
KARIMA BENNOUNE, AUTHOR, FATWA DOES NOT APPLY HERE: Absolutely. I think they're trying to position themselves quite wrongly as defenders of Muslim women. We keep seeing this image (INAUDIBLE) behind bars in bars, in jihab (ph) sort of presenting a sympathetic face. This is a woman who participated in a terror attack that killed 60 people including people at bridal party at weddings. I can't imagine anything more against Arab culture and yet she seems sympathetically as b behind bars. We need to be telling the stories that the women who are victims of ISIS, the women who have been subjected to sexual slavery, women like (INAUDIBLE) who was killed by ISIS in Mosul, in Iraq last year for opposing them.
COOPER: And I mean, I think that the picture had up there, initially of her, is the significant one of her with the suicide vest. I mean, this is a woman who attempted, he failed, she only failed to kill other people because she wasn't able to detonate her vest correctly. Her husband was able to detonate her vest. Fifty seven people were killed in a number of attacks back in 2005 in Imam in three different hotels.
Karima, the Jordanian pilot, I mean, does having him, whether he's alive or dead, does it give ISIS added leverage in the region?
BENNOUNE: Absolutely. I mean, I think one of the things ISIS is trying to do here is to sort of break up the coalition that has been put together to stand against them. There's increasing opposition in Jordan to participating in that coalition. And I think if this young pilot is killed, that opposition will only increase.
What has to happen now is that the international community has to stand together. We're seeing demonstrations in Tokyo saying, I am Kenji and demonstrations signs in Jordan saying all of us, (INAUDIBLE). We have to stand together and beat both of these men. We have to stand with all of these victims. There has to be a united front against this terrorist group.
COOPER: Fran, I want to ask you about the reporting by CNN that one of the Taliban members, we don't know which that were swapped for sergeant Bowe Bergdahl is now suspected of trying to return to terrorist activity. I mean, that's not to say he's left Qatar or back on the battlefield, but what do you make of that that he's attempting to?
TOWNSEND: You know, it's interesting, Anderson. We don't have the details of that communication as Jim described it. And frankly, these guys know they're being monitored. That's not a secret. So you have to wonder what that's really about.
Now, remember, you know, also in Qatar, there was a Taliban office and so he hardly has to reach all the way back to Afghanistan in order to make contact. There's a bunch of things about the story as the facts we have so far that raise an awful lot of questions. That said, I will tell you, it is not surprising to me. These guys were released not because they had seen the light of day and turned themselves around. These guys were released as part of a political deal and a policy decision on part of the administration.
And so, I don't think we should be surprised. I also think the female suicide bomber, while she will be if they could have this swap go forward, she will be lofted and she will be videotaped and there will be all sorts of propaganda that comes out of her. I think you have to also got to expect somebody like her will also go back to the battlefield and kill.
COOPER: And I mean, Dan, you have a lot of experience. You were a coordinator of the hostage working group in Baghdad. When you make a deal to get a prisoner or a hostage back, you can't control what happens after that.
O'SHEA: Well, you can predict the future and we're seeing it on display. They're winning. ISIS is on its state of winning by this very discussion. My counterparts are bringing up absolutely valid points. Rashad will be a hero to the movement. The same time, they're already breaking the coalition. The Jordanians, probably the strongest military ally we have in this fight. And now be pressured with them to back out. They need to get out of the air strike campaign.
And again, regardless of what happens with the prisoner swap, if it's even still on as a possibility, ISIS is winning. This hostage terrorism works and we're proving it. And we can expect more of it in the future.
COOPER: Yes. Dan O'Shea, appreciate you being on, Karima Bennoune, Fran Townsend as well.
However it ends, we obviously hope it ends as well as possible this story, this hostage story is so enormously and tragic in part because in some ways, it's so unlikely. A Japanese man inexplicably drawn to the region, another Japanese man taken captive trying to report his story, would-be killer, would-be terrorist alive to be part of it all because the suicide bomb didn't detonate. A Jordanian airman captured while fighting a terror group ISIS that traces its roots back to a fellow Jordanian (INAUDIBLE). It is both fascinating, and more than a little sad to see how they all became part of this terrible drama. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) COOPER (voice-over): The prisoner swap story really begins here in Iman, Jordan, in 2005. Three hotels were torn apart by suicide bombers. In this one, a wedding reception was under way. This photo taken moments before the bride and groom were seriously injured and both their fathers killed. In all, 57 people were killed in the three attacks.
Two of the bombers were husband and wife. The wife (INAUDIBLE) survived.
My husband detonated his bomb, she says, and I tried to set off mine but failed. (INAUDIBLE), an Iraqi, was captured in the aftermath. She was sent by Al-Qaeda in Iraq, the group that would eventually morph into ISIS. She's been on death row in Jordan ever since.
In October last year, Japanese journalist Kenji Goto traveled to Syria in part to investigate the capture by ISIS of another Japanese man named Hiruna Katowa (ph). Goto himself was eventually captured. This past weekend, an ISIS supporter posted this gruesome image, Goto unchained holding a photo of what appears to be (INAUDIBLE) headless body.
Today, Goto's wife broke her silence in an audio statement.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I beg the Jordanian and Japanese government to understand that the fates of both men are in their hands.
COOPER: In late December, Jordanian pilot, (INAUDIBLE), was captured by ISIS. He was involved in air strikes against the Islamic state in northern Syria when he crashed his plane. His captors released this half naked picture of him surrounded by militants.
Three people from three very different places now part of the same very dangerous story.
COOPER: Up next, we're going to learn who was flying AirAsia flight 8501 and what the crew was hearing in the moments before the airline went down.
Later, we will take you inside the courtroom for opening statements of the murder trial of former New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez got under way today. And see how each side plans to make its case.
COOPER: A month since AirAsia flight 8501 fell into the Java Sea, there is new information on what was happening on the flight deck in the airbus A-320's final moments. Now we are learning as well of the two pilots, each with ample experience in the plane was actually flying it when things went wrong.
Details now from our aviation correspondent, Rene Marsh.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) RENE MARSH, CNN AVIATION AND GOVERNMENT REGULATION CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Indonesian investigators say the copilot, 46-year-old Remi Emmanuel Plesel was controlling the doomed jet while the more experienced captain monitored the flight.
ALAN DIEHL, AUTHOR, AIR SAFETY INVESTIGATORS: Two thousand hours in the airbus should have been enough time to make him capable of handling most emergencies, but this looks like it may have been an extreme emergency.
MARSH: Plesel flew for AirAsia Indonesia for three years and had more than 2,000 hours in the A-320, but the captain had more than 6,000 hours, more than 13 years commercial experience and ten years flying for the military.
One Indonesian crash investigator used a model airbus A-320 to demonstrate how they believe things unraveled in just three minutes and 20 seconds. According to Indonesian authorities, flight 8501 was cruising at 32,000 feet when it veered left, tilted to its side, wobbled, then climbed to 37,400 feet in just 30 seconds. The stall warnings which sound like this -- were blaring, then suddenly, the aircraft began to fall. Once below 24,000 feet, the plane disappeared from radar.
Alan Diehl is a former NTSB crash investigator.
DIEHL: The fact that the aircraft was wobbling could be due to one of two things. One, the automation was shutting down and now they were having to take over and fly manually, or two, the actual turbulence was inducing G-force movements in the pilot's hand on the control stick causing the wobbling to get worse.
MARSH: Investigators say the crew was properly certified and the plane had no history of problems. Despite the Indonesian military's withdrawal from the search, the hunt for the 90 bodies still missing will continue.
Well, investigators have submitted the preliminary report but they would not release it at today's briefing and it's unclear if and when they will. Now, this could just be the investigators being very careful because this is a preliminary report and the facts could change.
Now, as it relates to the pilots, it is not uncommon for the copilot to be at the controls. They oftentimes take turns.
Rene Marsh, CNN, Washington.
COOPER: Well clues have been no answers and perhaps a better idea of the kind of questions investigators have been asking. Joining us is CNN safety analyst David Soucie.
So what do you make of it, David, on the fact that copilot, not the pilot, was actually flying the plane, does that mean anything to you because the copilot, I mean, they are often at controls, right?
DAVID SOUCIE, CNN SAFETY ANALYST: Yes, absolutely. As Rene said the copilot is often at the controls. You want to make sure that copilot, especially junior copilots, have more time at the controls so that they have the experience to move into a more senior position later. So it's not uncommon at all that that would occur.
COOPER: If the plane gets into to and emergency situation with the copilot flying it, does the pilot step in, take control?
SOUCIE: Actually no. You would think that he might, but in fact, in cockpit resource management, which is what's been really focused on by the FAA over the last ten years, was the point is that they need to keep their head in what they're doing. So in emergency situation, the copilot would have continued to fly the aircraft. The pilot would have been assessing the situation, looking for other alternatives, what choices do they have, how can they respond to what's going on and that's more what the pilot would be focuses on at that time.
COOPER: When you hear a stall warning, and the stall warnings going off, I mean, this may be a dumb question, does that automatically mean the plane is definitely in a stall?
SOUCIE: Well, there's a couple of phases of the stall warning. Until you get a stick shaker, you get indications -- other indications from it. But it's quite alarming, obviously, when that goes off as you heard in Rene Marsh's piece. It's loud and it warns you and you know what's going on. There's no question about it. If you don't take immediate action right away, you're going to be stuck in a situation that you can't get out of. So you do react to it right away. This is a little bit per flexing to me is to how the wobbling went on the head of time before the aircraft climb. That's going to be interesting to find out, certainly what happened in that scenario.
COOPER: Why would a plane climb almost 6,000 feet in 30 seconds?
SOUCIE: Well, really, it was only 30,000 or 3,000 feet in 60 seconds, but if you do that up for a minute, it's 6,000 feet per minute. That's how the calculations work on that, Anderson, but nonetheless, it's very fast. If you are an air show and you watch a fighter jet come through and take that steep climb, that's only about, that's about 3,000 feet per minute, 3500 feet per minute. So this was very, very fast, very, very steep. The aircraft isn't capable of doing that on its own without completely stalling and all the air speak converts into a stall and then that aircraft comes down without any wind over the wings. It has no chance of flying.
COOPER: So I mean, but why would somebody do that, to avoid a weather system or just, it's not something that should be done at all?
SOUCIE: No, it's not something that should be done. In fact, I have a question as to whether the pilot actually induced that climb at all. In the situation he was in when you have thunderstorms building this way, and that backside of that thunderstorm comes around behind the aircraft, so you have a tailwind, as soon as the aircraft hits the upslope, which it does, that's the wind shear that we talk about a lot as a wind shear where that speed of the air changes significantly, it could very well be that that actually caused the aircraft to climb very steeply and very quickly in putting it into a stall at that point.
COOPER: Interesting. David Soucie, appreciate your expertise. Thanks.
Just ahead tonight from NFL superstar to murder defendant, what jurors heard on day one of the Aaron Hernandez murder trial?
Plus, the latest on the next round of snow and winter misery that is headed toward New England. Details ahead.
COOPER: Welcome back.
In Massachusetts today, former NFL super star Aaron Hernandez went on trial for murder, just days before his team returns to the super bowl. Hernandez was on the field for the Patriots on the 2012 super bowl when the Patriots lost to the Giants. Sixteen months later, patriots dropped their tight end after he was arrested in the shooting death of a 27-year-old man, Odin Lloyd, a semiprofessional football player who was dating the sister of Hernandez's fiance. Now friends and family of both men went into courtroom today for opening statements.
Susan Candiotti reports.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Aaron Hernandez did not murder his friend.
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In opening statements, lawyers for Aaron Hernandez cut to the chase, asking what so many fans of the former star patriot want so badly to know.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why (INAUDIBLE) his friend? Aaron had a world (INAUDIBLE) to play in the future, not a murderer.
CANDIOTTI: But prosecutors accuse Hernandez of orchestrating Odin Lloyd's murder, shot six times execution style in an industrial park. Codefendants Ernest Wallace and Carlos Ortiz pleaded not guilty and are being tried separately.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Shot six times. He was killed.
CANDIOTTI: The gruesome details and crime scene photos too painful for Lloyd's mother, who breaks down in tears briefly leaving the courtroom. Sitting next to Lloyd's mother, his girlfriend, Shaniya Jenkins. Shaniya's sister Shiana (ph) who was engaged to Hernandez, sifts with his mother. Sisters with split loyalties.
Prosecutors revealed dramatic surveillance video for the first time, showing Lloyd getting into a car with Hernandez, Wallace, and Ortiz.
Jurors also see a video prosecutors say is taken by Hernandez's multi- camera home security system, allegedly minutes after Lloyd's murder. In his hands, they say, the suspected murder weapon that's never been found.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They'll tell you, ladies and gentlemen, that that appearance is unique. That means guilty.
CANDIOTTI: As Hernandez rocks side to side in his chair, defense lawyers fight back, suggesting to jurors that the object might be an iphone or ipad and asking if Hernandez committed murder, why does that video still exist?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The evidence will show that Aaron Hernandez wanted to destroy the recordings on that video system, he could have, but he did not.
CANDIOTTI: Defense attorneys say Hernandez would pay Lloyd to buy him marijuana.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Odin was known as (INAUDIBLE).
CANDIOTTI: CNN obtained this photo from a course showing blunts made by Lloyd for Hernandez. A joint found next to Lloyd's body, something prosecutors say links the victim and his alleged killer.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That joint is later analyzed and determined to have Odin Lloyd's DNA.
CANDIOTTI: By law, prosecutors don't have to provide a motive, but they hinted at one claiming Hernandez was angry at Lloyd over an argument at a club two nights earlier. But defense attorneys say it's not true.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, the evidence will show there was no reason. There was no motive. Aaron Hernandez is not murderous to Odin Lloyd.
COOPER: Susan Candiotti joins me now.
So you were in the court all the day. I mean, what was the dynamic between the victim's family and Hernandez's family?
CANDIOTTI: You know, Anderson, that is really fascinating to watch. In particular, you have two sisters sitting on opposite sides of the courtroom. On the one hand Shayana Jenkins (ph), she s the fiancee of Aaron Hernandez. And of course, she is sitting with Aaron's family.
On the other side is her younger sister, Shania (ph) Jenkins, who was dating Odin Lloyd, the victim in this case. And she's sitting right next to Odin Lloyd's mother. It's very almost uncomfortable to watch and certainly must be awful for them too.
COOPER: Susan, I appreciate you being there. Thanks. In their opening statement, the defense argue the police targeted Hernandez because of his celebrity. The question is, will jurors buy that theory? Joining me now, CNN legal analyst and criminal defense attorney Mark Geragos. Mark, I mean you defended certainly a lot of celebrities. How does it change things? I mean the fact that someone's famous, does it make it easier or harder to defend them?
MARK GERAGOS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I always think that there's a difference. I think you get, if you are famous, you get a presumption of innocence. If you're infamous, you don't. You get a presumption of guilt. In this case, he's famous. I think he gets a presumption of innocence. There's a predominantly female jury, I think that works to his benefit as well and remember, this is almost entirely a circumstantial evidence case. And while the jurors will be instructed that that can be as good as direct evidence, the problem for the prosecution in this case is, there is no literally no smoking gun, there literally is no confession. They are going to have to piece this together and have to overcome the idea that, why would he have murdered this guy? Kind of splintered the family apart and I think today when you saw the opening statements, the contrast in styles, I think was immense. I think the defense really kind of put it to the jury and did a very remarkable presentation.
COOPER: It's interesting though guys. We reported last night a number of things, which appear to be damning evidence several months ago when he was first charged, they've been disallowed by the judge a text message that Odin sent shortly before he was killed saying NFL that he was with NFL. That's basically been disallowed by the judge.
GERAGOS: Right, the - both the NFL and the theory was and she made the right decision, her honor did. It's hearsay. There's no evidence that this was a dying declaration because clearly it wasn't. So, that stays out. Also, the prosecution wanted to kind of further demonize him, if you will, by talking about the other two crimes that he is charged with. That was disallowed. So, the jury is going to be focused like a laser on this crime, did he commit this crime and I don't think that there's going to be a side show in terms of other stuff that's irrelevant to the judge's excluded.
COOPER: You know, you said a lot in the past that the case is often won and lost in jury selection. And you pointed out the majority of jurors on this case are women. Why do you think that in your opinion works in Hernandez's favor?
GERAGOS: Well, the idea that you've got an NFL football player, and I think people would think, well, then you are going to want NFL football fans, things of that nature, it's kind of counterintuitive. I think here where you've got a, by all accounts, a presentable good looking defendant who's getting a good defense, who is famous and you have basically grasping at straws for motive. I think that that depending on the female, and you hate to make generalizations, but I think that plays to a predominantly female jury. And so, I think at this point, it's really the prosecution that has the uphill battle, which is, you know, not always the case as you well know.
COOPER: I mean this may be a dumb question, but does an attractive witness, or somebody the juror - may find physically attractive, does that impact things? Can that? I mean I guess it must. GERAGOS: Oh, absolutely. It's not a dumb question at all. There's
study after study that will talk about whether somebody is attractive and how jurors, percentagewise, will end up believing that person more, whether except the one time that there is - that doesn't play out, as if you've got an attractive female defendant, families are usually deaf on that. But other than that with witnesses, attractive presentable witnesses who are more like us and us being the jury, that's, they can relate to, that's significant.
COOPER: Interesting. Mark Geragos, thanks as always. I appreciate it. Just ahead, the "New York Times" Charles Blow on his son's brush at gunpoint with police on his way home from the Yale's library. Plus, an explosion nearly levels a maternity hospital. Unclear how many may have been trapped in the rubble. Details on that ahead.
COOPER: That's what happened in St. Louis last night at a public meeting to discuss the creation of a civilian-run police oversight board. The packed room erupted after the business manager of the police union, the woman appeared to get into a shoving match. Tensions obviously still running high in the wake of the Michael Brown shooting. That meeting was meant to be a step towards smoothing relations between the community and the police in the wake of police shootings of young African-American men, one of the most illuminating voices we hear from "The New York Times" Charles Blow. He's talked a lot on this program about his fears for his own son's safety. Well, last Saturday, his fears seemed to come true. His son, a student at Yale, was walking back to his dorm room from the library when a campus police officer stopped him at gunpoint. He hadn't done anything wrong, he did exactly as he was told by the police officer, got on the ground, hands raised. Later he was told he fit the description of a burglary suspect. Eventually he went back to his dorm safely. Here's what Charles wrote in his column. "This is the scenario I've always dreaded. My son at the wrong end of the gun barrel face down on the concrete. What if my son had panicked under the stress, had I come close to losing him? Triggers cannot be un-pulled, bullets cannot be called back. I'm reminded of what I have always known," he wrote, "but what some would choose to deny, that there is no way to work your way out, earn your way out of this sort of crisis. In these moments, what you've done matters less than how you look. "
But here's what Yale said about the incident in the statement that it released: "A Yale police officer detained an African American Yale college student who was in the vicinity of a reported crime and who closely matched the physical description including items of clothing of the suspect, even though the officer's decision to stop and detain the student may have been reasonable, the fact that he drew his weapon during the stop requires a careful review. Charles Blow joins me tonight.
COOPER: When your son called you, told you what happened, first of all, what went through your mind?
CHARLES BLOW: Well, tried to figure out he's OK. And both physically and psychologically. And he was shaken. I could tell in his voice that he was shaken and I was trying to make him feel better. You know, to try to kind of stabilize him because I couldn't get there, but I was trying to make sure he was OK first and let him tell me his story.
COOPER: Because you and I have talked so often on this program about conversations you've had with your son.
COOPER: I'm wondering if that sort of ran through your mind, all those conversations you had had. I mean you said you've been glad you had those conversations ...
COOPER: Upset that he had to utilize some of them.
BLOW: Well, when he told me what he did in response, I realized that he had done all the right things. And, you know, part of you is happy that he remembers and he did it properly and he followed the script. And then part of you is incredibly sad that he would ever have to use it. In the back of your mind, you're hoping against hope that you'll never have to use the advice and then he had to use it.
COOPER: Does the fact that the police officer involved was African- American? Does that change the equation in your mind in any way?
BLOW: It doesn't for me because we don't - when we have those conversations with our kids, we don't say, well, if you run into a white police officer, behave like this and this, and this, and if you run into a black police officer, you don't have to worry about that. Do whatever you want to do, jam your hands into all your pockets, and, you know, jump around and talk back. We talk about the police in general. And I am very happy that when he turned around and saw whoever was with the gun that he didn't behave any differently. He didn't see any difference. He saw a gun, and an officer and he followed the very same script.
You know, a bullet doesn't know the color of the finger that pulls the trigger. It doesn't care. Bullets don't have emotions, they have directions. And I think that we have to as parents, always have to remember that that it's not so clearly delineated in terms of who your kid might run into as an officer.
COOPER: Do you believe race played a role even though the officer was African-American, do you believe race played a role in what happened to your son? Because there - you've come under criticism from some conservative sites, some even call it a race hoax. Because in your original article, you didn't mention that the officer was African- American.
BLOW: Right. Because in my argument, I've been writing about this for probably, years now and I have stopped, almost altogether, mentioning the race of any officers. Period.
COOPER: Is that - conscious decision on your side? BLOW: It was a conscious decision on my part and I'll tell you what, because it became more and more clear to me that it was more about culture of the police officers dealing with these young black men than individual officers dealing with these young black men. To me, it started build up as like this is bigger than just them. I started to just, you know, not like a crusade but just my own comfort to say, I don't need to mention these races.
COOPER: Because you believe that there's sort of a police culture which views young men of color differently.
BLOW: Well, I see - I believe that the data says that these young men of color are being treated differently and I don't know what it is about the culture in the police departments that is creating that dynamic, but there's something that - at play there. So I just started on my own to just stop doing it.
COOPER: I want to read you something that the Yale University, they put out a statement, they are saying in part "what happened on Cross Campus on Saturday, is not a replay of what happened in Ferguson, Staten Island, Cleveland or so many other places in our time and over time in the United States."
To that, what do you say?
BLOW: I'm very happy that the police chief and the dean get called and they were very apologetic and since then, the actual police officer called my son and my son said he was very apologetic. I think that goes a very long way in a way that Ferguson did not go. Because he could see this as an actual human being. He was being apologetic about something, my son was able to ask him, why did you draw the gun? He said, you know, couldn't get into a lot of details because it was an ongoing investigation, but he was able to talk to him like an actual human being.
COOPER: The Yale police department, they're also conducting an investigation.
COOPER: They're saying the fact that the officer drew his weapon during the stop requires a careful review.
BLOW: Everything that happened there, other than the gun pulling, I would have been perfectly OK with him. Told him to stand to the side, until you figure it out, make sure it's not him. I think he would have appreciated that. It's the kind of, that use of force and used that quickly without even asking a question knowing that asking whether or not he would kind of willingly submit, that was the problem. And what I'm hoping will come of this, I got the impression from the dean and the chief of police that this was not standard operating procedure, I'm hoping that investigation will lead to that being explicit and that I will never have to worry again about - or about anybody else's kid having a gun pulled on them when they're leaving a library.
COOPER: Charles Blow, I appreciate you talking to us.
BLOW: Thank you.
COOPER: Charles Blow, "The New York Times."
Just ahead, they have barely put this behind them and now New England being told to brace for another winter storm. The question is, how bad is it going to be this time?
Plus, protesters swarming Henry Kissinger - the Senate hearing today, with Senator John McCain lashing back with some choice words. We'll have that ahead.
COOPER: More snow is the last thing New England needs or wants after the record snowfalls that buried many areas this week. They just finished digging out in some of the worst hit areas along the coast. The damage of the property, that's still being tallied upright now and now a new storm is posed to dump more snow on New England. The question is, how much? For that, we go to Chad Myers. So, what should the northeast expect, Chad?
CHAD MYERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, not what we had on Monday. It's nice to be inside, Anderson, I'll tell you what - that was a cold storm. This is a small one, but there's another one behind it. So about three to four inches for Boston. Portland, Maine and on a bit into Nova Scotia. That's the area that's really going to get hit with this storm. So, here's the snow right now. Even an inch or two in New York City by morning could make some slick spots on the streets, but you don't see any organized pattern here of heavy snow. Which is kind of a fluffy snow that's going to just go right on by. That's the winter storm warning area though. So for parts of New Hampshire down to Gloucester and all of Maine and, of course, still we have significant snow in Nova Scotia. As the storm hits the Atlantic, the Gulf Stream right through here, it's going to do the same thing that the storm did on Monday. It's going to bow out, it's going to try to make the nor'easter, but because of the position here, not here, the snow will be 340 miles farther to the north. So there you go, Maine, there you go Nova Scotia, a bunch of snow for you. Winds get to be 50 or 60 miles per hour.
And we'll compare what Boston, I think, is going to see, which some are probably around two to four inches were on up farther to the north. Anderson, you see those big bombs and big purple again. Now, that's two or three feet of snow - up to Nova Scotia. There's Boston, somewhere between four and six ant euro. About two to four for the GFS and the same story for the - we looked at these models all week last week. And the GFS worked well. We'll see what it does this week. Portland, Maine, you can be the winner or the loser depending on where you are. Six, ten, four, one or eight - That's about it.
COOPER: Wow. Got it all over the map there.
MYERS: Yeah. COOPER: The storm on the horizon though for early next week, how bad?
MYERS: You know where it's starting? It's starting on Saturday on Super Bowl party day, I guess, here in the West. Rain in Flagstaff, rain in Phoenix and snow in the mountains, it gets its act together and it runs right across the country. And I think we really get to D.C., this is a D.C. storm for now. I understand this - five days away, I reserve the right to change my mind on its location, but the bull's eye looks like D.C., it could be 100 miles farther north. You look at New York again and this is a six inch snowfall here.
COOPER: Chad, you're starting to party for the Super Bowl on Saturday? Is that right?
MYERS: Yes, because I have to go to sleep on Sunday, so I could be up on Monday morning. I don't get to watch the bowl.
COOPER: All right. All right. Chad, thanks very much. I appreciate it. There's a lot more happening tonight. Amara Walker has got a 360 news business bulleting. Amara.
AMARA WALKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, Anderson. Three American contractors are dead after a shooting at Kabul's airport. A U.S. military official says it looks like an insider attack, but it's under investigation.
A gas explosion at a maternity hospital, it's caught on camera near Mexico City. At least two people are dead and more than 60 others injured. Most of the hospital is left in ruins. Officials fear babies and mothers could still be trapped in the rubble. The mayor says it seems a gas delivery truck malfunctioned causing a leak and then the explosion.
On Capitol Hill, protesters interrupted a Senate hearing featuring Henry Kissinger and call for the former secretary of state to be arrested for war crimes. Senator John McCain blasted the demonstration.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R) SENATE ARMED SERVICES CMTE. CHAIRMAN: You're going to have to shut up or I'm going to have you arrested. If we can't get the Capitol Hill police in here immediately, get out of here you low life scum.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALKER: And New York City firefighters rescued a boy this afternoon who wandered on to the frozen Bronx River. There was reportedly a girl with him who fell through the ice into the water, but managed to get herself out before firefighters arrived.
COOPER: Wow, scary stuff. All right, Amara, thanks very much. The Ridiculist is next. Something to make you smile.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COOPER: Time now for the "Ridiculist." And tonight we have the story of young man who was pulled over by the police in Cobb County, Georgia, issues a citation. No big deal. I mean it happens all the time. But this guy - he wasn't speeding, he didn't make an illegal turn, he wasn't texting. He didn't have a burned out tail light. He was pulled over for indulging an excessive deliciousness.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Officer explained to me that he had observed me eating a burger for about two miles.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That's right. The guy was doing nothing more than driving under the influence of a double quarter pounder with cheese. Now, remember, this is in Cobb County. You would think that a place that shares its name with a delicious salad would be more lenient in its food policies but alas, you would be mistaken.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Even though I was not exceeding the speed limit or driving erratically, he said, specifically, three times, you can't just drive down the road eating a hamburger.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That's news to me. Now, if eating while driving strikes you as an unusual thing to get pulled over for, especially in the United States of drive-thrughs, you're not alone. Our affiliate WSV spoke with an experienced traffic and DUI attorney who couldn't really sink his teeth into the concept either.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was no accident here so the fact that this man was charged with eating and driving is a first. If this was the law, I would have to hire more attorneys because everybody does it, including me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Georgia law does not explicitly ban eating while driving, it does, however, have a vague provision that could apply here. And I think this is the kind of occasional in the analysis. Our CNN senior legal analyst and Supreme Court expert, Jeffrey Toobin.
JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN ANALYST: So, here's what the Georgia law says. A driver shall not engage in any actions which shall distract such driver from the safe operation of a vehicle. So as far as I'm concerned, it comes down to what food. Spaghetti, problem. Salad, big problem. Anything with rice, an even bigger problem. But, you know, a burger? That's not a big deal. You could eat a burger, you can drive too, but the problem, of course, would be if anything unexpected happened, but hey, some people can just do it all.
COOPER: Jeffrey Toobin can do it all. As far as I'm concerned, that's pretty much case closed in my book. The guy got pulled over, has a court date next week. Sir, feel free to use the previous clip as exhibit A.
And just in case, I would suggest eating lunch before you leave for court because you never know when the food place you're in hot pursuit, on the ridiculous.
To Morgan Spurlock, "INSIDE MAN", starts now.