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PAULA ZAHN NOW

American Hostage Appears on New Videotape; Lady Killer Mystery; Hurricane Katrina Death Toll?

Aired January 30, 2006 - 20:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening, everybody. Thanks so much for joining us.
Tonight, after days of anxious waiting, an urgent message from the young American woman held captive in Iraq today.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN (voice-over): Still alive? Dramatic new video -- a reporter held hostage makes an emotional new plea for her life.

And the latest on ABC News anchor Bob Woodruff, seriously hurt in Iraq. Tonight, what is the latest on his condition?

The "Eye Opener" -- the lady killer mystery. In a city filled with strange murder cases, this is the strangest yet. And you won't believe some of the places where the trail of a killer leads.

And the tiniest miracle -- an amazing rescue caught on tape. A helpless baby is pulled from the water. Now an entire country is lining up to take her in.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: Welcome back.

We start tonight with a story that broke in Iraq just a couple of hours ago, the release of yet a new videotape showing American hostage Jill Carroll, the freelance journalist, you might remember, who was kidnapped on January 7.

Her captors had threatened to kill her unless all female prisoners in Iraq were freed. Well, today's tape, aired first on Al- Jazeera, shows Carroll tearfully urging Americans to plead for the release of female Iraqi prisoners. This is the first sign of Carroll since her captors issued a 72-hour deadline two weeks ago.

Aneesh Raman joins me now live from Baghdad with the latest details.

What else can we glean from this videotape, Aneesh?

ANEESH RAMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Paula, if nothing else, it perhaps proof of life.

In the 30-second video, Jill Carroll, wearing a white veil, clearly distraught, sobbing throughout, her voice cannot be heard, but an Al-Jazeera anchor says Carroll called upon U.S. and Iraqi authorities to release all female Iraqi prisoners.

Now, Paula, also on the tape, the date, January 28, is burned in. CNN, of course, cannot verify if that is when this tape was shot. But, as you mentioned, it is the first time we have seen Jill Carroll since January 17, when the group holding her, Brigades of Vengeance, issued a 72-hour deadline for all female Iraqi prisoners to be released. That deadline came and went, and there was no word on the fate of Jill Carroll -- a period of agonizing silence for her family, Paula, who, tonight, will find hope in the fact that Jill is still alive.

ZAHN: So, what is being read into these demands in this latest videotape that are the same as the demands made two weeks ago?

RAMAN: Well, again, there will be continued efforts to see if there is any way to contact those who are holding Jill Carroll. No specific new deadline was put in this tape.

But, just six days after that deadline, the first deadline came and went, five Iraqi female prisoners were released -- the U.S. military says completely unrelated, though, Paula, to the hostage- takers' demands.

ZAHN: Aneesh Raman, thanks so much for the update.

Joining me now from Washington, a friend and former colleague of Jill Carroll, a journalist herself, Natasha Tynes.

Thanks so much for joining us, Natasha.

What was your reaction when you saw your good friend's tearful plea in this videotape?

NATASHA TYNES, FRIEND OF JILL CARROLL: Well, I was shocked and traumatized, because I was hoping that I will -- I will hear the good news soon, because, after we heard about the release of the female detainees, I thought that, somehow, directly or indirectly, the kidnappers' demands have been met. So, I was hoping that they would release her soon.

So, I was shocked that there was another video asking for yet more demands, which were actually similar. And I was really saddened to see her in such a stressful manner. And it really broke my heart.

ZAHN: And I know you have studied this videotape over and over again to figure out what part of it might have been manufactured, what part of it is real. What can you tell us about that tonight?

TYNES: Well, I mean, you can't really tell much when you watch the tape.

I mean, the only thing you can tell is that Jill was -- was in distress. And you noticed that, as well, she's wearing the veil this time, unlike the -- the first time they showed her, which I think somehow adds a more dramatic feel to the tape itself. But it is -- it is -- it's definitely a stressful tape and it's definitely -- definitely very dramatic, more dramatic than the first one.

ZAHN: And, yet, I know you remain hopeful that she might ultimately be released.

Natasha Tynes, thank you for sharing your story with us tonight. Appreciate it.

TYNES: You're welcome.

ZAHN: Now we are going to move on to some of -- the other big story involving journalists covering Iraq.

Tonight, ABC News anchor Bob Woodruff and his cameraman, Doug Vogt, are showing some signs of slow improvement, and just hours from now, may actually be flown back to the U.S.

Just this month, Woodruff began co-anchoring ABC "World News Tonight." And he and Vogt were embedded with Iraqi troops when a roadside bomb hit their convoy just north of Baghdad. Right now, they remain at a U.S. military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany.

And that's exactly where we find Chris Burns tonight, who has the very latest on how these journalists are doing tonight.

What are the doctors saying, Chris?

CHRIS BURNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Paula, if you put it in perspective, what happened in -- on Sunday, things are much better.

Just moments after the blast, Mr. Woodruff was quoted as saying to his producer, "Am I still alive?" Well, he and his cameraman underwent surgery in Iraq. They came here early this morning, flown here by military plane. They had oxygen tubes in their throats. They had heavy sedations. But, since then, doctors have been able to work with them a bit.

And they say that, according to the doctors, they had good early signs of reaction, signs of slow improvement. Now, ABC News is reporting that, as far as Woodruff is concerned, that he -- he has responded to stimuli in his hands and feet, briefly opened his eyes.

Vogt is in much better condition. He is alert and joking, according to ABC News. Both of them, however, have suffered severe head injuries, broken bones. And the question is, should they be evacuated back to the States very quickly, or should they undergo surgery here?

Their -- some of their family members are here. An ABC executive here -- is here. And they're putting their heads together with doctors to decide the next step.

The hospital is guarded on whether they should leave right away or perhaps stay a few more days.

ZAHN: And, finally, tonight, Chris...

BURNS: Paula.

ZAHN: ... if they do stay a couple more days, you know an awful lot about the Landstuhl facility, having reported on it many times before. Any footnote you want to share with us tonight about the kind of care they might be getting there?

BURNS: Well, I certainly could.

Seven years ago, I was suffering from severe double pneumonia, after the Kosovo conflict, and was medevaced here myself. They made an exception for myself, as well as civilians like Woodruff and Vogt, to put them up here. They saved my life. I really owe my life to them.

ZAHN: Chris Burns...

BURNS: Paula.

ZAHN: ... thank you for that late update. And we will be keeping you all posted on the -- the latest coming out of Landstuhl.

Bob Woodruff and Doug Vogt are just two of the nearly 10,000 Americans who have been treated for wounds they suffered in Iraq. And Woodruff's brother says both men owe their lives to doctors at a military field hospital.

It is an important point. Combat medicine has come an amazingly long way. It isn't MASH anymore. It is a story of speed, care and life-saving precision.

CNN correspondent Alex Quade has been embedded with U.S. medical teams in Iraq and shows us what they face every day.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ALEX QUADE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In Iraq, lives can literally change in a flash., when American troops or the journalists traveling with them are wounded by roadside bombs, rockets or in firefights with insurgents.

The life-saving journey usually begins like this. Amid the chaos and pain, sometimes as lethal combat continues around them, Army medics or Naval Corpsmen take life-saving action, bandaging victims, carrying them out -- their destination, a fallback position outside the kill zone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One, two, three. Lift.

QUADE: This is triage. Navy shock and trauma platoon members collect and stabilize the wounded, then send them on to the next level of care.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Urgent! Urgent! ! QUADE: Urgent means medical evacuation. Get them to a combat field hospital within one hour of being wounded, what's called the golden hour, odds are, they'll survive.

It's time for the medicine man.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Roger. Currently...

QUADE: That's the call sign of the U.S. Army medevac unit.

They care for the newly wounded while in flight, bringing them to the CSH, combat support hospital.

This is what happened to both members of the ABC News crew. Within 37 minutes of the attack, they had been flown to the CSH in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone. But their journey was only beginning. Doctors determined that both men needed surgery, meaning another journey by helicopter to the next level of care, a U.S. military combat hospital.

There are four combat hospitals in Iraq, in Tikrit, Mosul, Baghdad and 50 miles north of the capital in Balad. That's where the ABC journalists were flown.

Even though it is intense, this is the most technologically advanced hospital in Iraq. But, for Bob Woodruff and Doug Vogt, surgery here wasn't the last stop.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lower. Lower.

QUADE: Once they were stabilized, it was on to what is called the CASF, contingency aeromedical staging facility.

TECH. SGT. GEORGE DENBY, U.S. AIR FORCE: We are like a medical air terminal.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody ready?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ready.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On my command, prepare to lift. Lift.

We're like a medical air terminal.

Everybody ready?

My command. Prepare to lift. Lift.

DENBY: Our patients, when they come here, they're pretty much knowing, OK, this is my last step before I go back to the states or before I go to Germany and then go back to the states.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All right, one, two, three.

DENBY: We get them here. We get them medicated and get them comfortable. QUADE: And then time to load the patients on to a C-141, converted from cargo plane to flying hospital. Patients are racked onto hanging stretchers inside the plane. Then the plane goes dark for tactical takeoff. This is light discipline, only low red light, until the plane clears Iraqi airspace.

The flight medics go to work. Using chemical glow sticks as tiny lights, they squeeze between patients in stretchers.

CAPTAIN ASSY YACOUB, PHYSICIAN: Whatever care they were getting, we continue that care. We continue mechanical ventilation on them to keep their respiratory status in check. We continue drips, etcetera, like, they need to be sedated, they need something for pain.

QUADE: After clearing Iraqi airspace, lights on for the six-hour flight to Ramstein Air Base, Germany.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Prepare to move. Move.

QUADE: The patients are taken off the plane, then on to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center.

The military transport carrying Bob Woodruff and Doug Vogt landed in Germany this morning. They had gone from the battlefield to this hospital in less than 24 hours.

Alex Quade, CNN, New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And, thanks to the dramatic improvement in combat medicine, thousands are surviving wounds that once were considered fatal. Take a look at this. During World War II, the death rate among wounded U.S. troops was one in three. It wasn't much better in Vietnam, one in four. In Iraq, it is one in eight.

Coming up, a bizarre crime spree that has baffled police for years. Who is the old lady killer? Was a key to the mystery right in front of wrestling fans?

And do you have any idea just how many people were killed by Hurricane Katrina? Believe it or not, the experts still don't know. Why is that?

But, first, our countdown of the top 10 most popular stories on CNN.com. More than 22 million of you clicked on to our Web site today.

At number 10, an emotional denial from a man accused of sexually abusing a 3-year-old girl and a teenage boy. Last week, we introduced you to the woman whose persistence led to his arrest. And, in just a few minutes, we will have an exclusive interview with the subject himself.

At number nine, 72 Canadian miners rescued today from a mine in Saskatchewan after being trapped by a fire that started on Sunday. Stay with us. We have got numbers seven and eight for you coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Still to come tonight, you may find this hard to believe. It has actually been five months since Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast. Will we ever know just how many people died during the hurricane?

Now, one of the stories that had everyone talking last week was the rescue of a young child who police say was being sexually abused by the couple who claimed to be her parents. You might remember this startling surveillance video of the 3-year-old girl in an Alabama convenience store.

And we introduced you to the good samaritan who felt something just wasn't right. She ended up calling police, and they brought the girl to safety.

Well, tonight, we have some new developments, including startling new photographs and some new claims being made by the man accused of abusing the girl.

In an exclusive collusive jail yard interview, David Mattingly brings us face to face with the suspect and our story "Outside the Law."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How you doing today?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The search for evidence continues at a rundown trailer in rural south Alabama, as Conecuh County investigators look for cold, hard facts in a case of alleged child molestation that appears to be filled with deception.

JACK WILEY, DEFENDANT: I'm guilty of a lot of crimes. But I will -- I will -- I don't care what they send me to prison for, but not hurting my kid. I love her.

MATTINGLY: Charged with two counts of rape and one count of sodomy, Jack Wiley says he did not molest the 3-year-old girl and the 17-year-old boy identified in the past as his children. He claims, medical evidence that investigators say indicate rape of a 3-year-old is something else.

WILEY: I believe it has something to do with the spider bites, because, for quite a while, she would put her hands in here and she would hold her breath until she turned red. I mean...

TOMMY CHAPMAN, CONECUH COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Let me make this clear, OK? There is no question that that little girl has had sexual contact very extensively. And the doctor described it as the worst she had ever seen. MATTINGLY: Conecuh County district attorney Tommy Chapman calls the (INAUDIBLE) case bizarre. He says Jack Wiley and Wiley's female companion, booked under the name Glenna Faye Marshall, have roamed the country together under a variety of aliases, maybe for as long as 17 years.

CHAPMAN: We're still trying to verify a lot of things that have been told by this woman. And I will be honest with you. I don't know that I believe anything that she said. I -- I'm having real questions in my mind about whether she's really the mother of these children.

MATTINGLY: But investigators are confident in what they have learned from the children, disturbing medical evidence of abuse from the little girl, and a heartbreaking story of sexual perversion from the boy, which, if true, they say, would implicate Wiley and the woman who claims to be the boy's mother.

(on camera): What is he telling you?

CHAPMAN: That he's been molested, both orally and otherwise, by both of these folks.

MATTINGLY: For how long?

CHAPMAN: We don't know, years, apparently -- years.

MATTINGLY (voice-over): The children are in foster care, awaiting DNA testing that county authorities expect to bolster their case, as well as confirm whether or not these suspects are truly the children's parents.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And David Mattingly joins us now.

So, David, do you any idea how long it is going to take to get those DNA test results back?

MATTINGLY: Authorities here have hired a private company to handle their DNA testing. The samples will be taken on the couple and the children a week from today. After that, it could be four to six weeks.

So, it is going to take a long time. They're hoping to have some more earlier results coming back, however, as they check into the Social Security numbers that this family has been using. They're all bogus numbers. They're hoping that, as they look into them, they will find that there are some shreds of truth, some of those digits matching up to accurate numbers. And they hope to have some more, possibly that leading to a positive I.D. before the DNA comes back -- Paula.

ZAHN: What an investigation that lies ahead.

David Mattingly, thank you so much. And we want you to stay with us for one family's amazing discovery. He hadn't been heard from since Hurricane Katrina. Where was he? And were we checking on him correctly and where were his actual written checks going?

Plus:

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Ed Lavandera in Mexico City.

A serial killer has been targeting little old ladies here for three years. Police have finally made an arrest. But I think you will find it fascinating to see who they say the culprit is. I will have the details coming up.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ZAHN: But, before that, a look at our countdown of the top stories on CNN.com. Twenty-two million hits on our site today.

At number 10, the report we just showed you about the child abuse suspect in Alabama. Nine, the rescue of those Canadian miners.

Coming in at number eight, a new videotape just released today showing al Qaeda's number two, Ayman al-Zawahri, threatening new attacks and taunting President Bush.

At number seven, documents obtained by CNN show that, just after Hurricane Katrina, FEMA failed to accept help offered by the Department of the Interior.

Number five and six straight ahead -- you will never guess what they area.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: You're probably going to find this hard to believe, but here we are, some five months after Hurricane Katrina, and no one is too sure how many people died as a result of that storm.

The latest body was found on Friday in the debris of a home just east of New Orleans. We do know that Katrina killed at least 1,200 people in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. But that's bound to go much higher, because more than 2,700 are still listed as missing.

Sean Callebs set out to learn what it is actually like for Katrina families, some still praying for miracles.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SEAN CALLEBS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the chaos of the storm, and its immediate aftermath, it was clear, Katrina was a killer. Early on, federal authorities feared the worst. They made preparations for as many as 20,000 fatalities. Authorities now believe 80-year-old Lincoln (ph) Smith was among the first to die. This is all that is left of his lower Ninth Ward home.

Lorraine Smith says she couldn't convince her husband to leave.

LORRAINE SMITH, KATRINA SURVIVOR: He thought that he could make it. He had that much confidence in himself.

CALLEBS: Recovery crews found Smith's body in early October in what was left of his house, his wallet still in his pocket.

But the family had to wait an agonizing four months for a positive identification. A DNA match finally proved, without a doubt, the body in this home was indeed Lincoln Smith, just two months shy of what would have been his 60th wedding anniversary.

SMITH: When we actually realized that it was him, you know, we all broke down, you know?

CALLEBS: Painful, but officials say this family has a sense of closure. Many others don't.

Lincoln (ph) Smith is among the last victims who will be identified. Technicians are working to I.D. the last 100 or so bodies at this makeshift morgue. Dr. Louis Cataldie is the state medical examiner.

DR. LOUIS CATALDIE, LOUISIANA STATE CORONER: It wears on you when somebody sends you a photograph of their loved one, and they're looking at you, and there is this person you want so desperately to identify.

CALLEBS: The death toll from Katrina is above 1,100, but Cataldie expects it to go much higher. There are still about 2,700 people missing, some victims, the medical examiner says, no doubt washed into the Gulf of Mexico. Other bodies, he believes, are still buried in splintered remains of houses.

So, just how many more people died?

CATALDIE: The closest estimate we can get from repetitive phone calls of people who keep calling in about their missing loved ones is that we have 400 to 500 people truly missing.

CALLEBS: The list of missing is long and sobering. Here are some random names, 20-year-old, Robert Jenkins, who is 39, Miller Scott, who lived on Simon Bolivar Street.

Some people have no doubt reconnected with family, but, for reason or another, just haven't told the state to take their names off the list.

Then there are cases like Robert Dozier. For weeks, Linda Velasquez has been calling the authorities, trying to track down her 59-year-old cousin. She was convinced Dozier was dead. LINDA VELASQUEZ, HURRICANE KATRINA SURVIVOR: We knew he was getting a Social Security check. And no one has heard from him, so, can they tell us where his checks are going, so, we would know where he is? They said that the checks had been suspended. But the checks had been suspended for three months. This was a long time of, where is he?

CALLEBS: But, a few days ago, her prayer was answered. Dozier was found in Arizona in an assisted living facility, where he had been since fleeing the storm. He was disoriented and suffering from stress.

VELASQUEZ: We finally were able to talk to him. And he says he's OK. You know, he thought we were dead, because we didn't call him.

I'm sorry.

But, you know, we are going keep in contact with him.

CALLEBS: There will be scores of people who will never find their loved ones. And the reality is, we will probably never know exactly how many people died or how many lives were forever changed by this storm.

Sean Callebs, CNN, New Orleans.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And one more thing -- it takes five years before a missing person can actually be declared dead and an estate can finally be settled in Louisiana.

Coming up next, a deadly crime spree -- what is the connection to female wrestling? You are going to love the media circus surrounding this one.

But now on to number six in the 10 most popular stories on CNN.com, "War of the Worlds" is among the contenders for this year's Razzies, an Academy Awards spoof honoring the worst movies of the year. These will actually be announced on March 4, the day before the Oscars.

At number five, a lot of people still talking about last night's Screen Actors Guild Awards. "Crash," "Capote" and "Walk the Line" were huge winners, all but shutting out "Brokeback Mountain."

Number four on our countdown when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Coming up in this half hour, one of the smartest dogs you'll ever see, and my own dog Nigel is pretty darn swift. Could your pet be a life saver? Just wait until you hear what this little dog did.

And then at the top of the hour, friends of ABC's seriously injured journalist share their stories on "LARRY KING LIVE."

But now, on to a bizarre series of absolutely brutal crimes. Dozens of murders over the last three years and finally a big break in the case. Now, actually tossing a confession in front of TV cameras and what does it all add up to?

Well, Ed Lavandera in Mexico City with tonight's "Eye Opener."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LAVANDERA (voice over): The images were chilling. Elderly ladies murdered in their homes. The scenario kept repeating itself for three years.

Investigators believed the killer was posing as a social worker offering to help the elderly. Some victims had been strangled with a stethoscope. The killer was nicknamed Mataviejitas or the little old lady killer.

IOAN GRILLO, ASSOCIATED PRESS REPORTER: The insecurity and paranoia people feel. They feel very unsafe on the streets. And these kind of crime, you know, when you are talking elderly ladies, very sad. The insecurity they feel.

LAVANDERA: As the murders mounted, investigators didn't even know for sure if the killer was a man or a woman. Witnesses described a person wearing thick makeup and a strong build leaving some of the crime scenes.

Investigators at first suggested the killer might be a man dressing as a woman. So they made this mannequin's head to show what a cross dressing killer might look like.

LAVANDERA: When Ioan Grillo saw that, he knew there was no telling how weird this story might get. He's been reporting on the murders for the Associated Press.

GRILLO: One of the things about Mexico, a lot of stories in Mexico, sometimes they do seem larger than life. They seem more fiction than fact.

LAVANDERA: The last chapter of the Mataviejitas saga came last Wednesday when 82-year-old Ana Maria Reyes was strangled in her home. Her daughter, Analilia Musada who lives in New Jersey raced back to Mexico to headlines proclaiming her mother was the latest victim of this serial killer.

ANALILIA MUSADA, VICTIM'S DAUGHTER: I wanted to throw up. I was able to see my mother before she was put in the casket. And she didn't deserve to die the way they did. Absolutely. Because she never did any harm to anybody.

LAVANDERA: But this time a witness happened to see the killer leaving the scene. The suspect was chased down. It took three people to tackle 48-year-old Juana Barraza. (on-camera): In the last three years there have been almost 30 cases of elderly women who were murdered while they were home. Police say they have evidence to link Juana Barraza to at least 11 of those killings.

But that raises a fearful question for many people here. Was she acting alone or is someone else doing the same thing?

(voice over): Within hours of the arrest, police said they would use fingerprint evidence to prove Barraza is responsible for most of the murders. This is the little old lady killer police said and with typical Mexican judicial flair, she was paraded before the cameras. A scene more like Hollywood paparazzi working the red carpet.

Prosecutors even let her speak to reporters where she admitted to the most recent killing but denies being involved in all of the murders.

GRILLO: What grabbed the attention was how calm she was. I mean, she was very calm. She said to the reporters very calmly, I killed this lady.

LAVANDERA: A reporter asked why she would kill old ladies. She gave an arrogant shrug and said they would find out after she talked to the police. Investigators say Barraza has confessed to four murders, and some reports say she was driven by sexual abuse she allegedly suffered from her mother.

To find out more about Juana Barraza we visited this ramshackled wrestling arena on the outskirts of Mexico City where she was often seen with her two children. Mexican wrestling is like a wild circus show. Characters like Senor Black and the Hurricane take turns punishing each other.

It is here where Barraza developed a robust stout appearance. She wrestled under the name the Silent Lady because of the way she would quiet her opponents. None of these wrestlers would talk to us. Only a vendor would.

(on-camera): How did she act when she was here?

He says she would really get into the wrestling matches here, patting the wrestlers on the back, talking to them.

(voice over): He says Barraza would cheer for the darker more sinister wrestlers known as the rubias (ph). Just a few weeks before her arrest, a Mexican television network interviewed her at a wrestling event. She was asked if she ever acted like the sinister wrestlers at home, and with a smile, she said she's just like a rubia in her heart.

Analilia Musada sees evil in those eyes.

MUSADA: That's what happened with these type of people. They're very cynical. They have no feelings. They act inhuman. They are practically mentally sick. LAVANDERA: Mexican wrestlers wear masks to create an alter ego. It is the world Juana Barraza came from.

Now the Silent Lady has been unmasked, and little old ladies feel they can sleep easier.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LAVANDERA: Juana Barraza is in jail here in Mexico City awaiting trial. Authorities say they will continue to investigate the other unsolved murders of elderly women. And of course the number one suspect in all of those cases right now is Juana Barraza--Paula.

ZAHN: Ed Lavandera, that's one weird and fascinating story. Thanks.

How long does it take before a dog to become truly loyal to a new owner? Well, coming up, a case where there was actually a life or death situation. What did this little dog do brand new to his owner? You're going to be amazed.

Plus, a case we're seeing isn't necessarily believing. Who is this? Here is a hint. It isn't a famous talk show host. That really wasn't the guy we were looking at. But you'll see later.

And what is in the plastic bag that you saw a second or two earlier? This beautiful child. Let's find out why hundreds of people are lined up to adopt her tonight.

Right now though, here is number four on our countdown. A mother of three in Arkansas is in police custody accused of fatally smothering her three children. There is much more including number three on our CNN.com countdown. Twenty-two million of you logging onto our web site today. We'll be back right after this.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Well, we actually learned something new here. There is actually an award for the rescue dog of the year. And you're about to meet the most recent recipient. It's a remarkable story from suburban San Francisco. First, story starts like this. A man saved the dog by adopting her from a shelter. He had really no idea, though, that very soon the dog would save his life. Here's Ted Rowlands.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): While recovering in a Northern California hospital, Michael Bosch had a very special visitor who he says saved his life.

MICHAEL BOSCH, SAVED BY DOG: Hi, honey. Hello, honey.

ROWLANDS: Honey, a five-month-old Cocker Spaniel was with Michael when he plunged 50 feet down his own hillside driveway in an SUV.

BOSCH: When we got into soft soil, it just sort of tipped and I knew I was in trouble.

ROWLANDS: The SUV hit a tree. Michael and Honey were trapped, pinned inside, hanging upside down in a remote area on private land where Michael lives.

BOSCH: I sort of went through my mind, who is going to find me on 70 acres?

ROWLANDS: Michael, who suffered a heart attack in August, said his heart was racing. He says he took a nitroglycerin pill to calm himself down. Then, he saw a hole in a smashed window big enough for Honey to get through.

BOSCH: I saw the opening. And I said, Honey, you've got to go home. And I pushed her out there and scurried her up the hill.

ROWLANDS: Michael waited, hoping he could stay alive until someone could find him.

BOSCH: I didn't know how long I was going to last down there in the gully. My best hope was in that dog.

ROWLANDS: Six hours later, now evening, a quarter mile away, Robin Allen came home from work and found Honey in her driveway.

ROBIN ALLEN, NEIGHBOR: She wanted to get my attention. There's no question about that.

ROWLANDS: Robin had never seen the dog before, but the phone number on Honey's tag was Michael's, so she drove the puppy home. When she opened her door, she could hear Michael yelling from down in the gully.

ALLEN: And then I realized he was yelling help.

ROWLANDS: Robin ran into Michael's house and called 911.

DISPATCHER: 911, medical emergency.

ALLEN: Our tenant seems to have driven over the side of the road, and I think he's pinned under a car.

DISPATCHER: What part of his body is trapped under the car?

ALLEN: I don't know. He seems to need the jaws of life and a chainsaw to get out. He's been down there since 11 o'clock, but he's...

DISPATCHER: ... he's been down since 11 o'clock?

ALLEN: But he's speaking to me.

ROWLANDS: It took rescue crews 45 minutes to get Michael out of the SUV and pull him up the hillside. With major injuries to his chest and legs, Michael was rushed to a waiting medical helicopter.

What may be the most amazing part of this story is that Michael only adopted Honey two weeks ago before the accident from this Northern California pet shelter. He had been coming here looking for the right dog for more than a year and immediately spotted Honey two days after she arrived.

CAROL WILLIAMS-SKAGGS, MARIN CO. HUMANE SOCIETY: I think she was just meant to be his. I think that she worked her way here for that reason. It's a match made in heaven.

BOSCH: You are such a good girl. Yes you are.

ROWLANDS: Michael has almost fully recovered from five broken ribs and a leg injury. Honey, who went to work with Michael before the accident, now spends every minute with him.

BOSCH: The first day, I didn't take her to the office with me when I first went back to work. And I got a lot of comments like, "Where's Honey?" They didn't want to see me, they wanted to see the dog.

ROWLANDS: Honey's story has received so much attention, that Michael has received cards and phone calls from across the country, including one from Honey's original owner, who lives in Tennessee. She told him that Honey's original name was Angel.

BOSCH: When I heard that, it just really took me back. It was like I had my guardian angel with me all the time and I didn't even know it. It amazes me how instinctive animals can be, and really how intelligent they are, that we don't really realize, even for a puppy.

Honey, sit. Sit. She really is an angel, but we still call her honey.

ROWLANDS: Ted Rowlands, CNN, San Rafael, California.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And get this, the National Dog Day Foundation will honor Honey with her own float in this year's Dog Day Parade here in New York City on August 26th. Be there.

We're about 15 minutes away from "LARRY KING LIVE" starting. Let's check in with Larry to find out who he'll be talking to tonight. Hi, Larry.

LARRY KING, CNN ANCHOR: So you were going to wear fuchsia.

ZAHN: I'm speechless.

KING: Yes.

ZAHN: I forgot. It was a long weekend, Larry. You know, I have a lot to get ready for the State of the Union coverage tomorrow night, two-hour show. KING: Easy come, easy -- what do you got to get ready? You get ready, what, to do what?

ZAHN: You know, you have to read everything that's been written about what the president is going talk about. And you know, the wardrobe thing just kind of didn't cross my mind. I'll get my act together on Wednesday, OK?

KING: OK, what do you wear Wednesday?

ZAHN: It's your choice. Since I blew it tonight, it's your choice.

KING: OK, Wednesday, black.

ZAHN: OK, you got it.

KING: Black, black Wednesday we'll call it.

ZAHN: Now are you going to let us know what you're going to talk about tonight on your show?

KING: Yes, tonight we're going to talk about Bob Woodruff and the terrible thing that happened to him in Iraq. I think more news people have been injured in the Iraqi war than any other war. And we're going to hear from Martha Raddatz, his colleague, and White House news correspondent for ABC.

And then a top panel's going to be with us to discuss not only that, but also Jill Carroll, who's turned up again. And that's Bob Schiefer (ph), Peter Arnett, Lara Logan, Christiane Amanpour and Michael Holmes, they'll all be with us. So it's going to be an interesting hour. Hopefully we'll find -- and hopefully this Jill Carroll thing, wouldn't it be great to get her back?

ZAHN: It would be. But so disturbing to see that latest video released today. Thanks, Larry, we'll all be watching. Have a good show.

KING: OK, black Wednesday.

ZAHN: You got it. Coming up, someone you ought to recognize but is this the host of a late night T.V. show or the president of a European country? Can you tell who's who?

Plus, an amazing discovery. What did this baby go through? You're not going to believe her survival story. But before that, No. 3 in our CNN.com countdown. A new study says that heavy drinking raises the risk for cancers of the mouth, larynx, liver, colon and breast. Don't go away, we'll have No. 2 right after this. Please stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: So did you miss the big election results over the weekend? Not here of course but in Finland of all places where the president there bears an uncanny resemblance to a certain American late night celebrity. Just try keeping Jeanne Moos away from that story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): This is the story of Conan who has gotten laughs for weeks simply by showing a picture of the president of Finland night after night, over and over again.

Conan O'Brien's resemblance to the 62-year-old Finish president is inescapable.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh yes, they do.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh my gosh.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is that his mother?

MOOS (on-camera): Wait a minute come back here. Are you sure you don't want to run for something?

(voice over): As the Finish president ran for re-election she had Conan in her corner making campaign commercials for his look alike that were actually seen in Finland because Conan's show is rebroadcast on Finish TV.

Some thin skinned Fins complained on web sites that Conan mispronounced their president's name. Well, actually, really Fins say...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tarja Halonen

CONAN O'BRIEN, "LATE NIGHT WITH CONAN O'BRIEN": I call her Tarja. She claims that her name is Taria (ph). So we are going to take it to small claims court.

MOOS: Conan's dredged up real footage of his look alike dancing at the Finish jazz festival with James Brown.

The town of Turku invited Conan to visit Finland sending a video invitations where residents wore masks and dressed up like Conan. Finish newspapers showcased his endorsement.

O'BRIEN: Just think I control the outcome of the Finish presidential election. Once Finland falls then meddling in the affairs of Sweden is next.

MOOS: Well, now the election is over and guess who won. It was a squeaker Halonen won by a mere three points. Her opponent conceded by kissing her hand. His campaign said Conan had no effect on the election. Hers said he might have helped with the youth vote.

Now Conan plans to visit in mid-February. He better be prepared for Finish humor in a country where they joke there is nothing to do but drink.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you know the three most beautiful words in Finnish language? MOOS (on-camera): No.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The bar is open.

MOOS (voice over): President Tarja and Conan plan to meet during this trip. Maybe he would like to improve the resemblance.

O'BRIEN: And if I had like just a day of hormone therapy. I mean I don't have a lot of testosterone as it is.

MOOS (on-camera): I have lipstick if you want to...

O'BRIEN: You know, I did this morning, but it came off.

MOOS (voice over): Read these lips.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: Way to go Conan. Our Jeanne Moos always good from start to finish.

Don't go away we have got some amazing pictures for you. Why hundreds of people want to adopt this baby and why did somebody throw her away?

And at the top of the hour, friends of ABC's wounded journalist are the guests on "LARRY KING LIVE." What are they hearing about both men's injuries.

First, number two in our countdown of the top stories on CNN.com--some 22 million of you logging on to our site today--is our lead story, the serious injury suffered by ABC anchor Bob Woodruff and his cameraman, Doug Vogt, while reporting in Iraq. Both are now at a U.S. military hospital in Germany. Stay right there we have got the number one story on our countdown coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Now it is time to hear some of your thoughts on some of the stories we air here. A lot of you commented on our story about a very rare medical condition known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy or RSD.

Friday we introduced you to a TV anchor and reporter Mary Nissenson who developed RSD after she had a face lift. The condition means she suffers from constant extreme pain that can only be relieved with powerful doses of medication. Here is what you said about that.

I have had RSD for about 13 years. And I sympathize with the lady who got it from the face lift. RSD is very excruciating and you can never understand the level of pain. I am very grateful that you put it out there. Lots of doctors believe that you are crazy so thank you. ZAHN: And we appreciate your sounding off, and we want you to continue to share your thoughts with us on tonight's show. We have a voice mail for us at 1-877-Paula-now or email us at heypaula@cnn.com. Keep you comments coming.

Now, on to number one on our countdown of the top 10 stories on CNN.com, baby Jessica McClure. You probably remember her. Eighteen years ago the nation held its breath collectively while she was trapped in a well for 58 hours. This weekend she got married at a church in Midland, Texas.

And tonight hundreds of people are literally lining up to adopt one very special baby in Brazil, make that one very, very special baby, as you are about to hear. It is an amazing story that sounds like a fairy tale, but it is true.

Here's Tim Lister.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TIM LISTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It's the miracle that has gripped a nation. In a park in the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte a couple walking see a black bag floating in the lagoon. It sounds as if a kitten is inside.

As people gather a man with a video camera films the rescue. As they unwrap the bag, shock and amazement. A two-month-old baby girl in a pink dress crying at the top of her tiny lungs..

A small wooden board has apparently kept the bag from sinking. The baby was rushed to the very hospital where she was born, but astonishingly was none the worse for her ordeal.

SUZANA MOREIRA RATEZ, HOSPITAL OFFICIAL: She is very well. She is very peaceful eating normally like a healthy baby.

LISTER: As the Brazilian media converged on the story, the child's mother was tracked down, 27-year-old Simone Cassiano da Silva.

SIMONE CASSIANO DA SILVA, MOTHER OF ABANDONED BABY: I couldn't stay with her. I was not mentally prepared for her. There was a group of people by the side of the lagoon. I asked them to leave the baby somewhere because I did not want to see it.

LISTER: She said she paid the group a couple of dollars left. Police don't believe her story and she is now in jail charged with attempted murder.

Hundreds of people have gone to the hospital with gifts or hoping to catch a glimpse of the baby. Hundreds more have offered to adopt her. As yet, she has no name. But to millions across Brazil she will always be the little miracle in the pink dress.

Tim Lister, CNN, Atlanta.

ZAHN: And that wraps it up for all of us here tonight. Thanks for joining us. Tomorrow night please join Wolf Blitzer and me in Washington for a very special edition of "THE SITUATION ROOM" and our coverage of the president's State of the Union address. Good night.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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