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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Police find an infant girl taken from her murdered mother's body; A great white shark kills an 18-year-old surfer off the coast of Australia; Music therapy through a vibroacoustic bed appears to reduce pain in hospital patients; New Web sites offer live phone calls from Santa
Aired December 17, 2004 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
HEIDI COLLINS, HOST: Good evening from New York, everyone. I'm Heidi Collins.
Was a mother murdered for her baby?
360 starts now.
A woman eight months pregnant murdered, the fetus stolen from her body, found alive. Do police have the killer kidnappers in custody?
A U.S. soldier charged with shooting himself to avoid going to Iraq. One man's desperate times and desperate measures.
A frightening warning to 27 million Americans popping Celebrex for pain. The pills, the dangers, and what this could mean for you.
A teenager taken under and killed by a great white shark. His friends nearby witness the gruesome scene. The hunt is on for the killer fish.
And our special series, Ancient Cures: Modern Hopes, or Hoax? Tonight, music to the ears of desperate patients.
ANNOUNCER: Live from the CNN Broadcast Center in New York, this is ANDERSON COOPER 360.
COLLINS: Good evening. Anderson is off tonight.
We begin with breaking news. It appears one day after she was stolen from her murdered mother's womb, a baby girl has been found alive. The facts are hard to believe. A Missouri woman, eight months pregnant, was strangled. Police say the motive was the child inside her.
After an Amber Alert was issued, police in Kansas have apparently located the baby, and two people are now in custody.
Right now, we are going to Nodaway County, Missouri, Sheriff Ben Espey, there's a press conference going on. We want to take you straight to it from Maryville (ph), Missouri, now.
SHERIFF BEN ESPEY, NODAWAY COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT: This department couldn't have done it alone. The major case squad, which is combined of law enforcement all over northwestern Missouri, Buchanan County CSI. These people are very well trained, and they were very good. They helped us out at the crime scene over in Skidmore.
The FBI, there were seven or eight FBI agents that come in, and tremendously helped us, because some of the computer stuff that was a little bit out of our control, they knew about, and they were able to dig right into that and get things going.
And public safety, Randy Strong, he started from hour one and stayed with us through the whole thing. Most everybody here's been up continuous. And we've run leads all night long. And we continued to run leads.
When this Amber Alert come out, that's the greatest thing that's ever happened to law enforcement and to our children. This -- we took an anonymous tip that come from several states away from here. They give us some information that led us to Kansas, that led us to this location. And we may have not ever got that. We may have not ever recovered this little baby if Amber -- the Amber Alert system was not put into place.
And so with that, we're happy. We're very happy. And I'm going to turn this over to some other people to help me.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I think I would like to address the Amber Alert system. Like the sheriff said, it was instrumental in this investigation today. And I think I would like to point out that, because of the fact that this was a fetus, an 8-month-old fetus, not a child, it didn't meet the criteria initially to make the Amber Alert. It was turned down initially, and it wasn't allowed to go out.
The sheriff, being the great law enforcement officer that he is, made a couple phone calls and got this Amber Alert started. So I think that while this is a great system, and that these confinements on putting this out are very important, it's also apparent that after this case is over, there's going to have to be a little adjustment made to this.
But I can't say enough about the excellent work that the sheriff did. He did two things that were really important. The first one is, when he started the investigation, right away he tried to get the Amber Alert started. And then he activated the major case squad, which brought in other law enforcement agencies, such as the highway patrol, the FBI, different sheriffs, police departments in northwest Missouri. And this gave him a lot of manpower to run down a significant amount of leads in a short period of time.
And I just -- this is a great day for law enforcement in northwest Missouri. And I can't say enough good about Ben Espey and the job he did, as well as the gentlemen here to my left, the FBI agents, the bureau gave us the manpower out of state that really enabled us to get to that point in a quick amount of time and continue this investigation. And that's really all I have to say is, I just wanted to talk a little bit about the Amber Alert system and why it was so important that it did work this time, and that we got it out. And at this time I think I'll let one of the agents from the FBI speak. Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Could you identify yourself?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm Jeff Lansey (ph) with the FBI. Just also want to say thank you to the sheriff's department for the fine work (UNINTELLIGIBLE) they did, and the Missouri Highway Patrol, of course.
First of all, the investigation is still ongoing. There are two individuals that are Being interviewed regarding this case in Kansas. I'm happy to say, the baby's in great shape. The baby's under medical supervision right now, under observation. And we expect that the father will be reunited with her -- his daughter very shortly.
In terms of the investigation, it's still ongoing. And right now, that's the status of the investigation. I think there might be an additional information forthcoming tonight about possible charges that might be filed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jeff, do you think...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, Rick Thorn (ph) with the FBI. And to build on what Agent Lansey said, the father has been reunited with the baby. And as the sheriff and the highway patrol said, this was a collaborative effort on the part of law enforcement. This is how it's supposed to work, where we all come together, we bring our own unique strengths to the investigative arena, and at the end of the day, in this case, it was a good outcome for us, the best outcome we could hope for.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does the baby have a name yet? Has -- and is it doing quite well now?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My understanding is, the baby is being held for observation overnight but is doing quite well. And as far as the name, I don't know. I guess that's up to the family.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If not for the Amber Alert, would this baby have been possibly in danger?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The baby was certainly in danger throughout the...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Father and baby are together right now?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's my understanding.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where are they?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At a hospital in Kansas.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is it a man and woman in custody?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not going to comment on anything of that nature at this point now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But no arrests so far?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's correct. Thank you very much.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) what was the baby wearing?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What, where did the tip come from?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are we ready to call this, sheriff?
ESPEY: Well, we can take a couple of questions.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can you just tell us what the baby was wearing?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where did the tip come from, Jerry? You said several states. Where was the tip from?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Again, where did the tip come from?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I don't want to give that away.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... Kansas (UNINTELLIGIBLE) the tip (UNINTELLIGIBLE) from Kansas?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here's what we can't do. The best thing that could have ever happened here is to get this child back. The worst thing that can happen here is that we lose a murder case on this. And that's what we have to be real careful with. I know you got -- you really want a lot of stuff.
We're in the middle of this investigation. We're not in the back of it, OK? We've still got people -- we got people interrogating people right now as we speak, and have been for the last two or three hours. What I can't do and we can't afford to do is let anything slip from here that can jeopardize a murder case.
And that -- and you're going to want, if it's your grandkid, you're going to want this person behind bars as well as we are.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Amber Alert. Where did the tip come from? Where? What state? Was it Kansas?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What I cannot do is give little leads like that out that could jeopardize the court system.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can you tell us what the baby was wearing?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sorry.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We anticipate in a short time we'll have some information that may be related to charges being filed in the case. If you can -- if we can have your indulgence until those charges are filed, then you might have a lot more information at that point in time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... later on tonight...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, later on tonight, I would anticipate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't have a specific time.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sheriff?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right -- you should get it right here. OK?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is an unthinkable crime. You're in law enforcement. You've been around a long time. What are your personal thoughts about this?
ESPEY: It's very hard for me to accept this. You know, I have two children and grandchildren and cousins, and to come upon something like this, nobody here -- nobody here could ever perceive this ever taking place, to have a fetus taken out of someone's womb, and then doing an Amber Alert and trying to find, trying to find a child that -- It's inconceivable. It -- (UNINTELLIGIBLE), I don't know. It's just -- I'm overwhelmed with the fact that we're going to be able to get this baby back to the family.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Was there any confrontation at all getting these two people to talk to you? Any confrontation or...
ESPEY: Yes, we're really not going to comment on that right now. And if you guys -- if you stick around for a little while, we may have some more information about the case in general.
Thank you very much.
COLLINS: So there you have it, from Maryville, Missouri, tonight, the very latest on the stolen baby. Two people are now in custody. We were hearing from local state and FBI authorities there, talking a lot about the Amber Alert as well. And the sheriff, you heard him say it, that it's the greatest thing that's ever happened to law enforcement, and to our children.
Want to go ahead and get some more details now about the case. For that, we hear from CNN's Keith Oppenheim.
KEITH OPPENHEIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Bobbi Jo Stinnet (ph) was 23 years old and eight months' pregnant. Police believe sometime Thursday afternoon, someone came into her rural Skidmore, Missouri, home, strangled her to death, then cut her open, removing an 8-month-old fetus from the mother's womb.
ESPEY: Doctors who examined Bobbi Jo in the emergency room give us information and indicated that we probably we would have a live child if we could find it.
OPPENHEIM: It appears police did just that in less than 24 hours. With the help of the public responding to an Amber Alert description of a red car, which had been parked in front of the Stinnets' home, police got the tip they needed.
ESPEY: They have located a baby girl.
OPPENHEIM: Friday afternoon, investigators said a baby had been found somewhere in Kansas. They did not give a location. They said the infant was healthy, and they believed it was the baby that was taken. They said two people were being questioned, and the key to the tip was the vehicle description.
ESPEY: The car that we put out on the Amber Alert is the car that was located in the driveway of this residence in Kansas.
OPPENHEIM: Earlier, police said they suspected it was one of two motives in this crime. Either the perpetrators wanted a baby very badly, or they had intentions of selling a child for profit.
OPPENHEIM: Some more information that we're getting, Heidi, we have learned that the child is recovering in a Topeka, Kansas, hospital. And hospital officials are saying that the baby was discovered in Melvern (ph), Kansas, that's about 35 miles south of Topeka, and more importantly, about 175 miles, by my looking at a map and checking, from the baby's home.
Also, officials are using about -- are using a number of tests to confirm that the baby is indeed the child that they are seeking, and also using DNA testing to see if they can connect the people they are questioning to the crime scene.
And for some context here, Heidi, it's important to note that Bobbi Jo Stinnet and her husband, Zeb, the father of this baby, were married less than a year, and they were expecting their first child.
Back to you.
COLLINS: Oh, Keith, it's just a tragic story. We do also want to make sure that we let everyone know that we are following the progress of this story, and you heard the FBI agent hint a little bit about possible charges that could be announced within just a few minutes. So we're, of course, going to keep our eye on it for you.
Meanwhile, though, here in the United States, President Bush signs the 9/11 intelligence reform bill into law. And that tops our look at news cross-country.
At today's ceremony, Mr. Bush said America's intelligence gathering will become more coordinated and effective. The law calls for a national intelligence director, who has not yet been chosen.
Topeka, Kansas, the state's death penalty law ruled unconstitutional. The Kansas Supreme Court ruled today a provision in the law gives prosecutors an unfair advantage. The justices' four-to- three decision throws out the sentences of all six criminals on the state's death row. An appeal is expected.
Greenbelt, Maryland, serial arson suspect Aaron Lee Speed (ph) admits involvement. Court documents show the security guard charged with torching a new housing development told investigators he was present when the fires were set and that he knew the arson plan. Police are searching for at least two other suspects.
Athens, Georgia, the love shack made famous in this song by the B-52s destroyed by fire. And investigators are looking at the possibility of arson. The vacant cabin was being renovated. All that's left is a burned-out frame. And the infamous tin roof is no longer rusted, it's burnt.
That's a look at stories cross-country tonight.
360 next, find out why Scott Peterson is being described as very cheerful and a model prisoner just days after he was sentenced to death row. We'll talk to one of his jailers.
Plus, a children's party at Neverland ranch. Michael Jackson's annual bash goes on, despite his child molestation case.
Also tonight, great shark attacks. The hunt begins for a deadly predator. We'll take you there.
But first, your picks, the most popular stories on CNN.com right now.
COLLINS: You'd think Michael Jackson would want a lit less media attention these days. After all, he'll have plenty of it when he stands trial next month for allegedly molesting a young boy. But today, Jackson not only wanted some press, he invited it to a party at his Neverland ranch.
CNN's Miguel Marquez reports.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Michael Jackson welcomes children to his Neverland ranch, something his public relations person says he does all the time. What's different this time? The media was invited to watch.
MICHAEL JACKSON: Welcome to my ranch.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Michael!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you!
MARQUEZ: The visit comes days before a lengthy pretrial hearing, during which Jackson's legal team is expected to ask that the trial date of January 31 be pushed back by six weeks.
RAMONE BAIN, JACKSON SPOKESPERSON: I can't answer any questions with regards to his trial, and I'm sorry.
MARQUEZ: Jackson's spokeswoman Ramone Bain, says Jackson often has groups of kids to Neverland Ranch, but he usually doesn't greet them. He did this time, she says, because it's the last tour of the holiday season.
(on camera): Why allow the press into this particular gathering at this particular time?
BAIN: Because you've asked over the last several months.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): Jackson has been charged with, among other things, lewd acts against a child and conspiracy. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
MARQUEZ: Now, while I was in there a short time ago, there was about 80 children and about three dozen adults supervising them. We were told there would be about 200 children there. It didn't seem that that many showed up. We asked to speak to many adults, and we were denied that, saying that we could speak to them later.
A producer and a photographer just came out. They were there all day with them. We were never allowed to speak to any of the adults there. They are still in there, enjoying their day at Neverland as the sun sets, Heidi.
COLLINS: All right. Miguel Marquez from California tonight. Thanks, Miguel.
In justice served, the emotional toll of being just 32 years old, convicted of killing your wife and baby, and headed for death row might make it awfully hard to pull yourself out of your jail bed in the morning. But Scott Peterson's remaining cheerful, according to his jailers.
This is the same Scott Peterson who stared ahead impassively as a jury condemned him to death. He sat expressionless for most of the trial, some jurors even admitting it was his complete lack of remorse that factored into their verdict.
And perhaps Peterson's good mood may be summed up by two little words -- fan mail.
Joining me with details from Palo Alto, California, now, Under Sheriff Greg Munks of the San Mateo County sheriff's office.
Thanks so much for being with us.
How has his demeanor changed, though? Since learning that he was going to be put to death, has it changed him in the slightest?
UNDER SHERIFF GREG MUNKS, SAN MATEO COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE: I see, Heidi, his demeanor has been pretty steady throughout the whole ordeal. And there was no change whatsoever following the news of the death penalty.
COLLINS: Does that surprise you?
MUNKS: Yes, it surprises me. I'm not an expert on, you know, behavior such as that, but it just, it seemed unusual to me.
COLLINS: Well, I know that you have come across other prisoners who've been sentenced to death. I mean, was their demeanor different from how Scott's has been described? I'm sure you've noticed change in other prisoners.
MUNKS: Yes. Typically prisoners show emotion following a verdict of that magnitude. And so, you know, it is out of the norm, I would say.
COLLINS: Well, what about this notion of fan mail? Has Scott continued to get a lot of mail since the verdict, and then the sentencing?
MUNKS: He's been, it's been pretty steady. He gets about eight to 10 letters a day. And that hasn't changed since the verdict.
COLLINS: And how unusual is that?
MUNKS: It's pretty unusual. It's -- most inmates do not receive a steady stream of mail like that from all over the country, really.
COLLINS: Hm. Well, we've been talking a little bit about his, quote, "good behavior" and this notion of being a model prisoner. Have you ever heard of him giving the jailers any trouble?
MUNKS: No, he's been very cooperative, very respectful of the rules, and has not caused any problems at the jail.
COLLINS: He is being kept, though, in an isolated cell. How unusual is that?
MUNKS: Not really unusual. He's in a area of the jail that we keep prisoners by themselves. There's about 24 other men -- or 23 other men, there's 24 total in that particular cell block. And he has no contact with the other inmates whatsoever. I mean, he can talk to them through the door. But when he comes out for recreation, he's by himself.
COLLINS: Hm. All right. Well, Greg Munks, San Mateo County under sheriff, we certainly appreciate your thoughts tonight.
MUNKS: Thank you, Heidi.
COLLINS: Thank you.
360 next, pill-popping nation. A new warning on another popular painkiller. Do you know what's in your medicine cabinet?
Also tonight, shark attack. A great white kills a teenage boy. Now the hunter becomes the hunted.
Plus, the cold war over Christmas. Cuba talks to the U.S. over decorations.
And in a moment, today's 360 challenge. Do you know the news?
COLLINS: Tonight, a very unusual soldier's story to tell. It's about an Iraq war veteran who may have gone to desperate lengths to avoid another tour of duty there.
CNN's Adaora Udoji reports.
ADAORA UDOJI, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Marquise Roberts, an Army specialist, spent seven months fighting in Iraq. Twenty-three years old, on leave in Philadelphia, police say he took a bullet rather than return to war.
DIANE FULLER, AUNT OF MARQUISE ROBERTS: I can't even begin to explain it. I just don't understand how something like this happened.
UDOJI: But his aunt says her son, Roland Fuller, told her Roberts asked his cousin to shoot him, telling her...
FULLER: I didn't think that it would be nothing serious, you know, just shooting him in the leg, artificial wound, you know. The young man is terrified of going back to the war.
UDOJI: Police say the cousins went to this nearby park, and that Fuller used a .22-caliber gun to shoot Roberts in the leg. One apparently told police it was a robbery, the other said a stray bullet. Confronted, police say the story changed.
LT. JAMES CLARK, PHILADELPHIA POLICE DETECTIVE: They gave it up. They concocted the whole story in an effort for him not to have to go back to the war in Iraq.
UDOJI: A Pentagon spokesman said this was the first case of a soldier deliberately hurting himself that he can recall in 22 years. However, there have been high-profile deserters, like Staff Sergeant Camillo Majilla (ph), a 28-year-old National Guardsman who sought conscientious objector status. He was denied and sent to prison.
In 2004, the Army says nearly 2,400 soldiers deserted. But that's down, they say, from nearly 3,700 in 2003.
Paul Reickhoff, a veteran working with vets, says Roberts' case is not surprising.
PAUL REICKHOFF, FOUNDER, OPERATION TRUTH: I fear that this is the tip of the iceberg. I worry that we'll see more incidents like this, and a greater degree of damage to the people that has been done here by themselves or by the experience itself of being in combat.
UDOJI: Roberts was apparently not hurt badly and now faces criminal charges, along with his cousin, including filing a false police report. He may also face military charges.
Adaora Udoji, CNN, New York.
COLLINS: U.S. soldiers in Iraq are faced with two very different and difficult missions. On the one hand, they are fighting insurgents. On the other, they must repair homes and cities that have been torn apart by the war. It is very hard work. And the growing impatience among Iraqis is only making the job tougher.
As CNN's Chris Lawrence reports, it's all part of Reality: Iraq.
CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The 1st Cavalry Division fought its way through Baghdad's Sadr City one bloody block at a time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was as violent as any place you can possibly imagine.
LAWRENCE: But after they defeated some of the insurgents, their mission suddenly shifted.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We can, you know, we can be fighting one minute, and the next minute, you know, if we need to adapt and, you know, go into work in humanitarian-type stuff, what, we're ready for that too.
LAWRENCE: They've been ordered to engage insurgents, win the trust of residents, and protect rebuilding projects, from repaving roads...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, Rog, bring two.
LAWRENCE: ... to pumping streets where families still live in raw sewage. (on camera): But a lot of Iraqis say, for every one building or road that's been repaired, there are a hundred that make them feel as if the war never ended.
RASOUL ALI, SADR CITY RESIDENT (through translator): It's been two years. Where's the reconstruction?
LAWRENCE (voice-over): Rasoul Ali says he hears what the Americans say, but wonders if they understand what he sees.
ALI: It's not only this. Wherever you go, it's ruins.
LAWRENCE: U.S. officials say big projects, like building new power plants, take time. The work has to go up for bid, generators built from scratch. The American head of development compares it to his last project, Boston's Big Dig.
ANDREW WATSON, U.S. AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL AID: It took us 15 years to build it in the United States, which doesn't have an insurgency going on.
LAWRENCE: The soldiers understand Iraqis' impatience.
STAFF SGT. DAVE GURBA, 1ST CAVALRY DIVISION: I have a 2 1/2- year-old son back home. And, you know, you see the kids, you just want to get it fixed. You wish, you know, there could be a magic button you could switch in and just get it fixed. But, you know, it's going to take some time.
LAWRENCE: And explaining that could be their most difficult mission yet.
Chris Lawrence, CNN, Sadr City.
COLLINS: A political tit for tat between Cuba and the U.S. over Christmas decorations. That tops our look at global stories in the uplink.
In Havana, the Cuban government put up this massive billboard with some now-infamous Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse photos, along with a swastika and words "Made in the USA." It stands across the street from the U.S. mission, and was put up after the mission refused to remove holiday decorations that referred to 75 pro-democracy activists imprisoned in Cuba.
Along the U.S. and Mexico border, the U.S. counsel in Nueva Laredo (ph), Mexico, warns drug gangs in the city have turned to kidnapping U.S. citizens for ransom. It says 22 Americans have been either kidnapped or disappeared while visiting the city since mid- August, up from an average of four abductions a year.
London, England, a fire breaks out in actor Jim Carrey's hotel, where he was promoting his latest movie, "Lemony Snickets (ph): A Series of Unfortunate Events." No one was injured. And that's tonight's uplink.
A teenager taken under and killed by a great white shark. His friends nearby witness the gruesome scene. The hunt is on for the killer fish.
And our special series, Ancient Cures: Modern Hoax, or Hope? Tonight, music to the ears of desperate patients.
COLLINS: Police find an infant girl that was taken from her mother's body. That story tops our "Reset" tonight. An Amber Alert was issued last night after a 23-year-old pregnant woman was found murdered at her Skidmore, Missouri, home and her fetus cut out of her. Two people have been questioned in the case. The FBI says there's a possibility charges may be filed tonight. Police say the infant is in good health. We're going to talk with a spokesperson from the hospital where the baby is in just a moment.
New research shows the popular painkiller Celebrex raises the risk of heart attack in some patients. Many people switched to Celebrex after Merck withdrew Vioxx in September when it was linked to heart attacks and stroke. Pfizer says it has no plans to pull Celebrex off the market.
In Tacoma, Washington, a vote count has been blocked. A judge has granted a Republican request to stop election officials from counting hundreds of recently discovered ballots in the Washington governor's race. Republican state senator Dino Rossi had narrowly won the race in two earlier ballot counts.
In Washington, D.C., the U.S. has labeled the Hezbollah network Almanar TV as a terrorist organization. It could mean an end to the network's satellite transmissions in the United States. France had banned Almanar TV earlier this week.
The EPA says the air in 224 counties is unhealthy and must be cleaned within six years. Most of the dirty air is east of the Mississippi, though Missouri, California and Montana counties are on the list, as well. The EPA regulations affect some 95 million people.
The summer sun is burning hot in south Australia, but today many people are afraid to take a dip in the ocean. There's danger lurking there, a great white shark believed to have killed a young surfer yesterday. And what's more disturbing than the death itself is the gruesome way it happened.
(voice-over): This great white shark is a giant killer. Yesterday off the coast of Adelaide, Australia, this 15-foot predator mauled and killed an 18-year-old surfer. Experts and police discounted some witness reports that two great whites took part in the attack.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It bit his arms, left arm, and took him around the bit and was playing with him a bit. And then he (UNINTELLIGIBLE) another one came in, and they just took him apart. Yes, it's really bad.
COLLINS: The surfer was accompanied by some friends in a small boat. Witnesses say the shark came up from underneath the boat and attacked the surfer. The victim's friends reportedly tried to rescue him by beating the great white with oars to no avail. The search goes on for the victim's remains. Despite being spotted a few times, the killer shark is still on the loose.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We didn't go out. We haven't been out yet, and we're not going out.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There it is!
COLLINS: It is the second fatal shark attack in five days in Australia. Last weekend, a 38-year-old spear-fisherman was killed by a bronze whaler shark. Another surfer was mauled last July off the coast of Australia by a great white described as being as big as a car. Yet Australia remains a safe haven, with relatively few shark attacks compared to U.S. waters, where 40 to 50 attacks take place every year.
Joining us now from Los Angeles is Ralph Collier. He's the president of the Shark Research Committee in Canoga Park, California, and author of the book "Shark Attacks of the 20th Century." Thanks for being with us, Mr. Collier. You know, sharks, it seems, usually bite once and go away. That's what we hear, anyway. But that's not really what happened here in Australia. Why do you think this was so different?
RALPH COLLIER, SHARK RESEARCH COMMITTEE: We really don't know. There could be a number of reasons why the shark was a little more intense in his actions towards this individual. That happens -- that has happened several times off of California and other locations globally. But generally, you're correct, it's a single bite, especially with white sharks. And the shark then releases the victim and swims off.
As to the motivation in this case, why the shark continued its aggressive actions and continued to attack this individual, it will take quite some time and a lot of information will have to be analyzed before we can try to determine that.
COLLINS: How often do attacks like this, though, happen in the United States?
COLLIER: Actually, this year along the Pacific coast of North America, we broke a record that has stood for more than 30 years. This year, we had -- we have had nine confirmed great white shark attacks on humans off the Pacific coast, which is more than has ever been recorded in a single year anywhere in the world.
COLLINS: Why is it happening? Why the increase?
COLLIER: It probably is a double-edged sword. We have increased populations of what I refer to as victim user groups -- surfers, swimmers, divers, kayakers. Their populations are increasing. And at the same time, the white shark has also been protected in California for a decade now, and so their population is probably increasing.
COLLIER: So more people, more sharks. But I want to point this out, something pretty interesting that we found, a study done by the Florida History of Natural History, 92 percent of the victims of a white shark attack are male. Only 5 percent female. Why is that?
COLLIER: Well, actually, if you look at beach populations -- statistics can be very misleading. If you look at beach populations, generally, you will find males travel out further from shore and are involved in more of what we refer to as provocative activities than are females. The same thing is true with divers. More male divers are bitten than females for the simple reason there are more male divers.
COLLINS: OK. Tell our viewers, then, whether male or female, what you should and should not do if you are in the water and you come across a shark.
COLLIER: If you were to come across a shark, if you were to have an encounter, always as much as possible try to keep the shark in visual contact at all times. Move as smoothly and quietly as possible towards the beach, if you're a swimmer. If you're a surfer, try to catch a wave quietly and smoothly and ride it to shore. If you're a diver, keep sight of the shark. Stay as low to the bottom as possible. Work your way along the bottom until you see the silhouette of your boat. And then you can approach the boat from below.
COLLINS: Quickly, why stay low to the bottom?
COLLIER: The reason for that is if you're in mid-water, the shark can come at you from below, in front, behind and above. If you're moving along the bottom, he really can only come at you from above.
COLLINS: Right. And you can see him better, too.
COLLIER: So you have a little more protection.
COLLIER: All right, Ralph Collier, very interesting. We certainly appreciate your time here tonight. It's a terrible story...
COLLIER: Thank you very much.
COLLINS: ... out of Australia.
COLLIER: Thank you.
COLLINS: Thank you, sir. 360 next: A stolen baby found after being taken from her mother's murdered body. We'll talk to a hospital spokeswoman about the baby's condition.
And music therapy, soothing the pain from illness, part of our special series, "Ancient Cures, Modern Hope or Hoax."
Plus, Santa goes high-tech, but at high pricetags. You might call it naughty, not nice.
And in a moment, today's "360 Challenge." How closely have you been following today's news? Find out next.
COLLINS: Time now for today's "360 Challenge." Be the first to answer all three questions correctly and win a 360 T-shirt. What popular painkiller is now linked to heart risk in some patients? Where do more shark attacks occur annually, the U.S. or Australia? And the cabin gutted in Athens, Georgia, is believed to be the real- life love shack made famous by what band? To take the "Challenge," just go ahead and log onto cnn.com/360, then click on the answer link. Answer first, and you get the shirt. Find out last night's "Challenge" winner and tonight's answers coming up.
COLLINS: The latest on the baby stolen from her murdered mother's womb. We're going to have a live report from the hospital where the child is tonight. It's coming up in just a moment.
But first, all this week on 360, we've been investigating the modern benefits of age-old therapies. Tonight we wrap our special series on ancient cures with a look at the healing power of music. Around the world, voice and instruments have been an integral part of healing rituals for thousands of years. And as Dr. Sanjay Gupta reports, music may be the food of love, but it could also be good medicine, too.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's the heartbeat, the life blood of nearly every culture, the tie that binds us. Since the dawn of man, music has inspired the spectrum of human emotions -- frenzy, vigor, relaxation. It's also been used medicinally for millennia. Music, voices and instruments were a frequent complement to healing medicines for cultures across the globe. And that same principle guides music therapy today, although couched in a less conventional, even unorthodox instrument, something called a vibroacoustic bed. Vibrations are emitted through speakers built into the chair.
SUSAN SHIELDS, HARRIS METHODIST CANCER CENTER: The chair vibrates in time to the music. The strength of the vibrations varies as the pitch of the music varies. GUPTA: Forty-six-year-old Connie Puente (ph) regularly receives infusions at the Harris Methodist Cancer Center. It's an often uncomfortable process. This time, however, she uses the vibroacoustic chair. As the infusion courses into her bloodstream, music courses throughout her body. All this results in what's called a relaxation response. Studies are finding that eliciting this response has some effect on healing.
DR. HERBERT BENSON, PRESIDENT, MIND BODY MEDICAL INSTITUTE: There's decreased blood pressure, heart rate, rate of breathing, metabolism.
GUPTA: That was true for Puente. Her blood pressure went down significantly after spending more than an hour in the chair, and she says she felt an immense sense of relaxation.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You can actually feel the relaxing sensation in your fingers, all the way to your toes.
GUPTA: A recent National Institutes of Health study of 267 hospitalized cancer patients using vibroacoustic music therapy found that those patients experienced between 49 and 61 percent reduction in pain.
BENSON: All we are doing is putting scientific numbers on what people have known for millennia.
SHIELDS: It's something that we know works. It's something that we know will make people feel better. And when they feel better, have less stress, they heal faster.
GUPTA: It seems music has transcended time to remain a potent healer. Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, Atlanta.
COLLINS: Stick with CNN tonight now for more in-depth stories. We want to get a preview of what's coming up a little bit later on "PAULA ZAHN NOW" and "NEWSNIGHT" with Aaron Brian, or Miles O'Brien tonight. He's filling in for Aaron from Atlanta tonight. And Paula is here in New York. We want to go ahead and begin with Paula. Hey, Paula.
PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Hi, Heidi. I'll be talking about something far more controversial than the impact that music has on one's relaxation. I'll be talking with the CEO of Pfizer about Celebrex and that new study showing the painkiller may raise the risk of heart attacks. I'll also be speaking with a man who says he had a heart attack while he was taking the drug. We'll try to clear up some of the confusion surrounding this story at the top of the hour -- Heidi.
COLLINS: All right. Quite a story. Thanks, Paula. And Miles, who is actually in New York, just down the street here, getting ready to tell us about what's coming up.
MILES O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: One studio over. How are you, Heidi?
O'BRIEN: Yes. We're going to look at Celebrex, of course, and cover that story from many angles, as well, keep you up to date on that. And we're also going to talk to James L. Brooks. The man who gave us movies like "Terms of Endearment" and "Broadcast News" is out with a new one called "Spanglish," with Adam Sandler in it, Tea Leoni. And as always, it is brilliant. And as always, there is Oscar buzz around it already -- Heidi.
COLLINS: All right. Look forward to it. Thank you, guys.
360 next now, a stolen baby found, a live report from the hospital where the child is right now.
And in much lighter news, cyber-Santa, the high-tech ho-ho-ho. But is there a catch? Tell you about that.
COLLINS: ... eight months pregnant was strangled. Police say the motive may have been the child inside her, and two people are now in custody, being questioned. After an Amber Alert was issued, police in Kansas located the baby, who is at a Topeka hospital tonight.
And joining me now from Stormont-Vail Health Center is spokesperson Nancy Burkhardt. Ms. Burkhardt, thanks for being -- thank you for being with us here tonight. What can you tell us about the baby's condition? The quote that was given to us here by the FBI agent we listened to at the press conference was the baby is doing great.
NANCY BURKHARDT, SPOKESPERSON, STORMONT-VAIL HEALTH CENTER: Well, at this point, she's being evaluated in our ICU. And we aren't available -- we don't have any information available to release on her condition. She is being evaluated and treated appropriately.
COLLINS: Well, talk to us a little bit, then, if you would, about the Amber Alert. As I'm sure you are aware, there was quite a delay within the time that the Amber Alert was actually issued because we were talking about a fetus. We were talking about someone who did not meet the criteria in order to get that Amber Alert issued. Typically, how long do you have with a tiny baby who is one month premature to make sure that oxygen is given, make sure the baby is cared for correctly? I'm imagining this was quite a health concern at that point.
BURKHARDT: Well, I'm sure that was a concern. We didn't get involved in the case until the baby was brought to our emergency department via ground ambulance. And I should add that, at this point, we can't 100 percent confirm that the baby we have is the baby in question.
COLLINS: I know that the DNA tests are ongoing right now to make sure that that is 100 percent a fact, so you are correct there. Let me ask you about the father. We have not heard much about Bobbi Jo Stinnett's father, but we have also been told through that news conference that the father has been reunited with the baby. Can you comment on that?
BURKHARDT: I understand that that statement was made at the news conference, but to our knowledge, the family has not arrived on the premises at this point.
COLLINS: Can you discuss at all your best estimate as to when that child, if, in fact, it is determined definitively that this is the baby of the Stinnetts, would be able to go home, health-wise, how long that would take?
BURKHARDT: Basically, that will depend on the condition, and we don't have that information at this time. She is being evaluated. And again, she'll be treated accordingly. And until we know for sure what her condition is, we won't be able to answer that question.
COLLINS: Well, our thoughts are with that little baby, that's for sure. Nancy Burkhardt, we appreciate your time here tonight, coming to us from Topeka Kansas, and the Stormont-Vail hospital.
360 next now, the answer to tonight's "360 Challenge." Do you know the news? Log on to cnn.com/360 and click on the answer link to play.
Ring, ring, Santa's on the phone. We'll show you Web sites that help parents get in touch with the jolly old elf.
COLLINS: We want to take a moment to recap our top story tonight. One day after she was stolen from her murdered mother's womb, a baby girl has been found alive. The facts are really hard to believe. A Missouri woman eight months pregnant was strangled, and police say the motive may have been the child inside her. Two people are in custody. They're being questioned right now.
And after an Amber Alert was issued, police in Kansas located the baby, who is now at a Topeka hospital tonight, where she is being evaluated. There is expected to be another press conference tonight by police with more details of the two people who are being questioned, as we said, in this case. And of course, we'll be following it and bringing you the very latest as it becomes available.
I want to move on now to our "360 Challenge." What popular painkiller is now linked to heart risk in some patients? Celebrex. Where do more shark attacks occur annually, the U.S. or Australia? It's the United States. And the cabin gutted in Athens, Georgia, is believed to be the real-life love shack made famous by what band? The B52s, of course.
The first person to answer all three questions question correctly will be sent a 360 T-shirt. I don't even have one of those. Tune in tomorrow to find out if you are the one.
And last night's lucky winner, Andrea Korte of Scottsdale, Arizona. Another "360 Challenge" and another chance to win tomorrow.
In tonight's "Current," a Christmas message to all the good boys and girls out there: Get out of the room! Parents, beware. Your kids do not want to see this next story, OK? Cover their eyes. Block their ears. Send them to your rooms, or their room, if you have to. We are about to do a little bit of grown-up talk about you-know-who. Are they gone?
OK, good. Now, for all the adults, Jeanne Moos tells us a little tale about a new kind of Santa in cyberspace.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How are you?
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Remember that quaint old custom of sitting in Santa's lap? These days, make that laptop. Anyone who says, "Not a creature is stirring, not even a mouse," hasn't been using theirs to click on sites ranging from Santa1on1 to Santaspeaking, where you can arrange a live phone call from Santa.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ho, ho, ho! Hello! This is Santa Claus! Are Christopher and Brian there?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
MOOS: Why risk a scary brush with a jolly red giant, when for rates up to 30 bucks, you can get a personal call from Santa and a CD recording of it. Web sites offer standard or deluxe packages. You can even pay per minute to talk to jolly old St. Nick. Reminds us of another kind of call where you get your jollies. You must be 18 to order a phone call from Santa. There's Dasher's Deal, Commet's (SIC) Coupon, Blitzen's Bargain.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Santa would like you to start practicing your saxophone more.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK.
MOOS: He's been notified of your naughty or nice behavior before the call. And for a mere $4.99, you can get recorded progress reports on Christmas Eve day.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Rudolph, don't fly any lower! We aren't ready to land yet, Rudolph. Ho, ho, ho!
MOOS: Some stuff is free, like the Nice-o-meter at Claus.com. Just type in your name...
(on camera): Jeanne Moos, nice with a few exceptions.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bad, bad Jeanne! Bad Jeanne!
MOOS (voice-over): Or how about Christmas carol karaoke at Northpole.com? But karaoke pales compared to a live call from Santa. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I bet you'd like a set of golf clubs, wouldn't you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know everything about us!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't want to hear you using bad words!
MOOS: But even Santa didn't deter 6-year-old Brian from discussing the gaseous emissions of reindeer.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do they fart a lot?
MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
COLLINS: Do they what a lot? Oh! I'm Heidi Collins, in for Anderson Cooper. CNN's primetime lineup continues right now with Paula Zahn.
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