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PAULA ZAHN NOW

Tony Snow to Become White House Press Secretary; Bush Administration Feels Heat Over High Gas Prices; Background on Suspect in Duke Rape Trial

Aired April 26, 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, everyone.
Here is what is happening at this moment.

The Senate wants to divert money for the Iraq war to border security instead. Senators also ignored the president's veto threat and voted against cutting funds for the hurricane relief along the Gulf Coast.

Day three is over, and Zacarias Moussaoui's jury apparently still can't agree on whether the admitted al Qaeda terrorist should die or get life in prison. They will try again tomorrow.

And the president's top aide, Karl Rove, today made a fifth appearance before a grand jury investigating the leak of a CIA operative's identity. Rove's attorney says his client is not a target of the probe.

Now the new face tonight at the White House -- President Bush announced today that Tony Snow will be his new spokesman, replacing Scott McClellan, who is stepping down. And the question now is, will hiring a popular conservative radio host and former TV anchor to the voice of the White House make a difference, if the White House message stays the same? Will it make a difference if the new spokesman has also been very critical of the president in the past?

And why would anyone trade a healthy media salary for government wages and incredibly long hours? Well, we have those, too.

But here's White House correspondent Suzanne Malveaux, part of the best political team in TV.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The White House has a new face.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I have asked Tony Snow to serve as my new press secretary.

MALVEAUX: Former FOX News anchor, conservative talk radio host, and speechwriter for President Bush's father, Snow understands the importance of loyalty and economy of words.

TONY SNOW, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY-DESIGNATE: One of the reasons I took the job is not only because I believe in the president, because, believe it or not, I want to work with you.

MALVEAUX: Snow wasted no time in getting to know us. He said he accepted the job yesterday, after he got the final results of a CAT scan, revealing he was cancer-free. He plays the flute, sax and guitar and what he calls an old-fart rock band. And he says he's not here to drink the Kool-Aid. He will tell the president when he disagrees.

STEPHEN HESS, PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN, BROOKINGS INSTITUTION: I think you are going to get a lot more advocacy, because Tony Snow is a journalist of opinion.

MALVEAUX: The last time a career journalist stood behind this podium was 1974, after the Watergate scandal, when President Ford tapped NBC correspondent Ron Nessen.

Snow is being brought in as part of a White House image makeover, asked to sell the Iraq war and push good economic numbers, at a time when the carnage and gas prices are high, and Mr. Bush's approval numbers low. The job of White House press secretary has been likened to a human pinata. Just talk to those who have occupied the seat.

JAKE SIEWERT, FORMER PRESS SECRETARY FOR PRESIDENT CLINTON: You have got to wake up at 5:30 in the morning.

JOE LOCKHART, FORMER PRESS SECRETARY FOR PRESIDENT CLINTON: You bang your head against the wall a lot.

SIEWERT: Read six or eight newspapers.

LOCKHART: Sifting through what's real, what isn't, just like a reporter would.

SIEWERT: Start answering questions from the press around 6:30 and 7:00 for the morning shows. And, then, it just never stops.

LOCKHART: And, ultimately it's somewhat unsatisfying, because, if the president's happy with you, generally, the press isn't. If the press is happy with you, generally, the president isn't.

MALVEAUX: As a conservative commentator and 25-year media veteran, Snow has been critical of the president, at times characterizing him as guilty, impotent, and even an embarrassment.

But the spin from the podium today:

BUSH: I asked him about those comments.

(LAUGHTER)

BUSH: And he said, you should have heard what I said about the other guy.

(LAUGHTER)

BUSH: I like his perspective. MALVEAUX: The president has agreed to give Snow more of a voice in policy than his predecessors, which may indicate he will listen more to differing opinions.

QUESTION: Mr. President, what does this choice say about what you think you need in the second term?

MALVEAUX: When faced with a question, both scurried away, leaving some doubt whether much will change.

Suzanne Malveaux, CNN, the White House.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: Now, one of the traditions when a new press secretary takes over is to hand him a helmet and flak jacket, tongue only slightly in cheek. As you can see, President Clinton handed the helmet to Jake Siewert in 2000.

And Jake Siewert joins me now. He survived it all.

Good to see you tonight.

SIEWERT: I survived it all, yes.

ZAHN: This is a very tough time for the president. I worked with Tony Snow. He is a very smart guy. He's funny. He's open. He's clever.

But it strikes me that the administration has to deal with perceptions about problems in Iraq and rising gas prices. What difference is Tony Snow going to make to the president's poll numbers?

SIEWERT: Well, I think he -- I think -- I don't know that he will move the poll numbers, but he will give them a little breathing room to try to get some of the policy right and get some of the message right.

Right now, they were just under constant attack. And the press spokesperson, fairly or not, was perceived as robotic, spitting out talking points. I think Scott's a very good guy, the press give him some slack, but, at a certainly point, they were fed up. Tony Snow is going to come in there. He has criticized the president. So, he will have some credibility.

ZAHN: Criticized him? Called him impotent, said he was an embarrassment. He almost killed the guy.

SIEWERT: Yes.

Well, but I think that will help him a little bit, initially, with the press corps, and it will give them a little bit of time to get things right. But, at the end of the day, you're right. If the war is a mess, if the budget is not making its way through Congress, no amount of spin is going to cure that. ZAHN: The other thing that became clear today is, it appears as though Tony Snow is angling for more access to the inner circle. The question is, will the president listen to him, if he voices opposition, like we have heard him voice in the past?

SIEWERT: Yes.

ZAHN: And will it change anything?

SIEWERT: I think, if they're smart, one, they're -- they're smart to say he has more access. Whether it's true or not, it's -- it's very important for the press secretary to be perceived as being in the loop.

Whether it really means anything at the end of the day, who knows. But it's important for the press to think that that person can get their questions answered, and it's important to have -- I think what -- one thing he will able to bring to that job is, he will be able to walk in to the chief of staff or the president and say, hey, this is not working anymore.

ZAHN: It's -- it's -- I can't sell it.

SIEWERT: I can't say this one more time. I'm never going to do that ever again. You have got to give me something else new to say.

And that's a role the press secretary has to play. And it can help move policy.

ZAHN: Very quickly, in closing, what do you think is going to be the biggest single credibility test for a guy who is perceived as a -- as a conservative radio talk show host, TV anchor?

SIEWERT: He has got to show that -- that he's getting the White House to open up a little bit. It can be symbolic, but he's got to do something that shows that they are going to be more candid, they are going to be more forthcoming about the tough issues. And that's all. The press will know it when they see it.

ZAHN: We will be watching closely from here. Jake Siewert, thank you...

SIEWERT: Thank you.

ZAHN: ... for dropping by. Appreciate it.

With gas prices the way they are these days -- very high -- any presidential spokesman would need a flak jacket. And, just this afternoon, a Senate committee announced a probe into whether the big oil companies are paying their fair share of taxes.

Now, President Bush has already launched a federal investigation to look for possibly price-gouging.

But, as senior national correspondent John Roberts reports, the folks at big oil have already proclaimed themselves not guilty. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN ROBERTS, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With everyone, from consumers to Congress to the president, taking aim over the price at the pump, the oil industry came out publicly today, rejecting any notion that customers were being gouged.

RED CAVANEY, PRESIDENT AND CEO, AMERICAN PETROLEUM INSTITUTE: The oil industry does not condone price-gouging, and we feel that anybody who is found guilty of price-gouging should be prosecuted under the law.

ROBERTS: But guess what? Even if individual oil companies were grossly inflating prices, there is no federal law against price- gouging, and the head of the Federal Trade Commission has argued, there should never be.

DEBORAH MAJORAS, CHAIRWOMAN, FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION: Regardless of how repugnant price-gouging is, a law that prohibits it is a form of price control.

ROBERTS: Twenty-seven states and the District of Columbia have anti-gouging laws, but many of them only apply in times of emergency or crisis. There have been some prosecutions, most recently in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, but it's usually just little fish that get caught, individual stations or small chains, jacking up prices.

CLAY SELL, DEPUTY ENERGY SECRETARY: There have been some successes, but, generally speaking, the level of market manipulation is far less, our investigations have led us to believe, than what many people feel whenever they're paying these extraordinarily high prices at the pumps.

ROBERTS: The main federal worry for big oil is collusion, if they get together to manipulate prices. The new investigations announced by President Bush are looking into that, but the industry is confident they will find nothing.

CAVANEY: There have been over 30 of those done over time. And every one of them has exonerated the industry. We have every expectation that that's what is going to happen again.

ROBERTS: A bold prediction? Not according to this former member of the Federal Trade Commission.

HANK BANTA, FORMER FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION ATTORNEY: Oh, I think they know where they are going to come out. I think they don't go anywhere. I -- I -- I hate to be cynical. I mean, this is what -- you know, I have been around this thing since '73. And, you know, we see it happen over and over again.

ROBERTS: Critics say there's no need for oil companies to work together. With each one controlling so many parts of the process, drilling, refineries, distribution, and sales, it's easy, says industry watchdog Tyson Slocum, to affect prices without breaking the law. TYSON SLOCUM, ENERGY DIRECTOR, PUBLIC CITIZEN: But the problem is that there's lots of legal manipulation occurring, and that what we don't need is yet another investigation, but what we need to do is to strengthen the existing laws that we have, because the laws that we currently have are inadequate to protect consumers.

ROBERTS (on camera): So, why did President Bush launch yet another investigation of price-gouging? Pure politics, many people say, that he had to be seen as doing something, even though he was reasonably certainly that the probe would go nowhere.

And add to President Bush the chairman and ranking members of the Senate Finance Committee, who, late today, asked the IRS for tax returns from the oil and gas industries.

John Roberts, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And, right now, we move on with our countdown of the top 10 stories on CNN.com -- nearly 18 million of you went to our Web site today.

Coming in at number 10, Pentagon sources tell CNN that the military plans to cut the number of U.S. troops in Iraq by 30,000 by the end of this year. Right now, there are just over 130,000 U.S. troops in Iraq.

Number nine, our top story tonight -- FOX News anchor Tony Snow will be the new White House press secretary.

Numbers eight and seven are next, along with a trip to a place where, believe it or not, you can buy two gallons of gas for a dollar and still get change back. We will take you there.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN (voice-over): "Beyond the Headlines" -- there's a country where gas is so cheap that filling up costs $5. What could be bad about that? We will show you why it's anything but a driver's paradise.

Also, "Outside the Law" -- attacks on a young girl.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He came in like a thief in the night.

ZAHN: And a woman in her prime.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was standing at the foot of my bed.

ZAHN: Now, years later, the suspects face a very unusual form of justice -- all that and more when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: He may have put hundreds of patients' lives at risk. What happened when a doctor who's suspected of practicing medicine without a license went before a judge? Just you wait and see, a little bit later on.

But, first, more on rising oil prices -- you probably won't see any difference at the gas pump today, but crude oil prices are going down. On the New York market today, oil futures closed a few cents below $72 a barrel. That's down for the third day in a row, and down from their all-time high of $75 a barrel just last week.

Meanwhile, though oil company profits are way up. ConocoPhillips, the nation's number-three oil company, today reported its best-ever first-quarter profit, nearly $3.3 billion. The number- one oil company, ExxonMobil, reports tomorrow, and experts are predicting its first-quarter profit will be in the $9 billion range.

Now, if you want the cheapest gas in the country, go west, but not too far west. On the current price map, check out these colors. Red states show where gas is more than $2.90 a gallon. And it's way above that in New York and California.

Yellow states are in the $2.75 range. In green states, you can find gas in the $2.50s and $2.60s. It could be worse. Gasoline is the equivalent of $8 a gallon in London and 6 bucks a gallon in Germany.

Now, you say you want really cheap gas? Well, we know just the place, but, be warned. It's a country where they refer to America as "The Great Satan."

Aneesh Raman takes us to Iran and "Beyond the Headlines" tonight.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ANEESH RAMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): If cheap gas is your vision of paradise these days, this is paradise, a gas station off of one of Tehran's main roads.

(on camera): In Iran right now, a gallon of gas is just about 40 cents, in part because of government subsidies, but also because Iran has the world's second largest oil reserves.

(voice-over): And with such low prices, virtually everyone here can afford to drive and drive a lot. In fact, all that driving causes so much congestion and pollution, the government is now moving to ration gas so people drive less.

There is too much traffic, says Rasul (ph). With rationing, only those who really need it will use their cars, and others will use public transportation.

There's another reason Iran may ration. Iran has oil, but little capacity to refine it. So, the country actually imports 40 percent of its gas, which gives others leverage over them. But rationing is no quick fix, and could further the country's economic divide.

The poor are vulnerable. This will only be good for the rich, says Gisu (ph). They will have the money to pay for as much gas as they want.

In the next few months, the Iranian government plans to start handing out ration cards, and those who want to buy above the allotted amount will have to pay five times more, $2 a gallon. So much for the paradise of cheap gas.

Aneesh Raman, CNN, in the Iranian capital, Tehran.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: All right.

So, if you never buy gasoline in Iraq, there -- or Iran, that is -- there's always Iraq. Gas there is about 75 cents a gallon.

Later on in this hour, you are going to meet a young man who is facing the worst crisis of his life. How is a one-time athlete coping with allegations that have ended his college career and could send him to prison?

Right now, though, let's hit number eight on our CNN.com countdown. Get this: A South Carolina gas station is being sued for pricing its gas too low. The lawsuit was filed by the station's competitor, which claims the low prices violate the state's unfair trade practices act.

Number seven -- a Pennsylvania town is in mourning tonight, after a 6-year-old girl who had escaped a house fire on Tuesday was killed after she ran back inside to find her mother. Firefighters say that she didn't realize her mother had already made it out alive.

We will have numbers six and five in just a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: There is major news tonight to report in a shocking story we have been covering for quite some time.

In San Francisco, an unlicensed doctor who admitted doing fake medical exams on more than 1,000 patients has been sentenced to more than seven years in prison. Stephen Turner pleaded guilty to grand theft and other charges. His case left officials trying to get in touch with hundreds of people, some of whom could have deadly diseases and not even know it. Others may have been given worthless vaccinations with water instead of medicine.

Our Ted Rowlands has been investigating the story, and, before the sentencing, sat down and spoke with Turner in jail, in tonight's "Eye Opener."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Dr. Stephen Turner's troubles started in March of 1984, when, according to documents from the California Medical Board, he was accused of masturbating in front of two female minors at the USC Medical Center in Los Angeles. In 1992, he surrendered his medical license, after allegedly exposing himself to a woman in Northern California.

STEPHEN TURNER, DEFENDANT: I was in a desperate situation.

ROWLANDS: Despite losing his license, Stephen Turner says he kept practicing medicine.

TURNER: It's one of those things that just built up.

ROWLANDS: Turner's name was still on a government list of recommended doctors to do required medical testing for people applying for green cards. Turner says he took advantage of an opportunity.

TURNER: There was an office in San Francisco that I shared with an immigration attorney. And he -- he did the solicitations and got the patients to come over.

ROWLANDS: The lawyer has not been charged with anything. He denies any involvement. Turner's name is still on the directory at that office building in San Francisco's Mission District.

(on camera): People came to see Dr. Turner because, in order to get a green card, they needed to be tested for things like HIV and hepatitis, and they also needed vaccinations.

Well, when they got here, Turner would take their blood, but he never sent it for testing. And he would give them injections, but he wasn't giving them vaccinations.

TURNER: It was sterile saline injections.

ROWLANDS: Where did you get it?

TURNER: I got that from a surgical supply company.

ROWLANDS (voice-over): Saline, if sterile, is harmless, if injected into the bloodstream. Turner says the exams took about five minutes. He charged $200 per exam, giving each person a bogus shot, and then taking their blood. Everyone who saw Turner received documentation that they had been vaccinated and passed the medical tests.

KAMALA HARRIS, SAN FRANCISCO DISTRICT ATTORNEY: They believed they were being tested, and they believe -- and -- and they believed that they passed these tests, when, in fact, the appropriate tests had not been conducted.

ROWLANDS: What did Turner do with the blood?

TURNER: It was disposed of properly.

ROWLANDS: Prosecutors say it is unclear just how long he was giving these fake exams, but, in just three years, they say Turner took money from more than 1,400 immigrants, making more than $240,000.

HARRIS: You have a number of people who believed the system would work as it has been promised to work for them, and they followed the rules and did what they were supposed to do.

ROWLANDS: Turner, who is now in the San Francisco main jail, says he's sorry and claims he did it to support a wife and three children. He also maintains that nobody was hurt.

TURNER: Everything was clean. The syringes were clean. The needles were clean. All the supplies were clean, brand new, sterile.

ROWLANDS: Not according to Nino Kobakhidze, who went to see Turner with her sister. They noticed right away that the office was dirty, Nino says, and Turner didn't change his gloves between patients, even after her sister asked him to.

NINO KOBAKHIDZE, FORMER PATIENT: She started crying. She was like, he didn't change the gloves. Then, when I went in, I was like, can you please change your gloves?

ROWLANDS: She says Turner eventually changed his gloves before taking her blood, but what about other patients? Turner admitted to us in jail that some of his patients told him they had HIV. When asked what he did with that blood, he was reluctant to give any specific information.

(on camera): Shouldn't people be concerned about where that is right now? And how -- how did you dispose of it?

TURNER: Yes, that's -- they're right. It was disposed of properly.

ROWLANDS: Where is it now?

TURNER: It's -- it's incinerated.

HERMAN FRANCK, ATTORNEY FOR STEPHEN TURNER: I know there are issues about that. He thinks he did it in a proper way. I -- I don't know. I don't know about that. But, to our knowledge, nobody has had an infection or some problem.

ROWLANDS (voice-over): Turner was able to stay in business for years, in part because his name was on that federal list of doctors. Green card applications were approved for many people that saw Turner because he was on that list. No one from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would talk to us on camera about how or if they update their list.

A statement released to CNN said, in part -- quote -- "We were not advised when Stephen Turner surrendered his license."

(on camera): But a spokesperson from the California Medical Board says they did update a national database when Turner lost his license. Whether or not anyone from immigration checked that database is unclear.

(voice-over): San Francisco's district attorney, Kamala Harris, says Turner, who is facing 131 charges, is the one who is responsible and deserves to be punished. HARRIS: The conduct that this defendant committed is, really, extremely egregious, and deserves serious consequences.

TURNER: This is the worst thing that ever happened. And I'm really, truly sorry. I want to apologize to each and every one. And I just feel awful. I just feel very, very bad about all of this.

ROWLANDS: Meanwhile, there are more than a thousand people out there who think they have been vaccinated and tested by a real doctor.

Ted Rowlands, CNN, San Francisco.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: A popular Duke athlete is suddenly out of school, facing charges that could send him to prison. What's he doing as he awaits his day in court in the Duke rape case? And was he at the scene of the crime that's now making national headlines?

And how do you dress for a day at the ballpark? Could something Jeanne Moos has found be the latest fashion?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Ed Lavandera in Dallas, Texas.

These frozen pieces of evidence are helping solve mysteries decades old. I will explain coming up next.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ZAHN: Now we move to number six on our CNN.com countdown. One of the stars of the hit TV show "Lost" has begun serving a five-day jail sentence in Hawaii for drunk driving. Michelle Rodriguez opted for jail time and a $500 fine, instead of 240 hours of community service.

Number five, Iran's supreme leader warns the U.S. to expect attacks on its interests around the globe if the U.S. launches strikes against Iran.

We will have number four after this.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Coming up in this half hour, why are some sports fans doing this on purpose, looking as big and jiggly as they possibly can? We'll tell you why.

And then coming up at the top of the hour on "LARRY KING LIVE," former President Jimmy Carter shares memories on a man he calls his hero.

Here's what is happening at this moment. One of our top 10 stories tonight, word that military commanders plan to reduce the number of troops in Iraq by 30,000 by the end of this year. Defense Secretary Rumsfeld says it all depends on changing conditions there.

A special investigator warns that FEMA could waste millions more of your tax dollars, because it hasn't fully implemented fraud controls that were ordered after Hurricane Katrina. This year's hurricane season begins in just about a month.

And a would-be bank robber is in custody after an embarrassing four-hour standoff with L.A. Police. It began this morning when he tried to rob a bank before it opened. Well, a quick-thinking employee slipped out and then locked him inside where he finally had to surrender.

Now, we go outside the law tonight with two unsolved sexual attacks, one against a teenage girl, another against a young woman, both in Texas, both happened decades ago.

It has been years since the statutes of limitations ran out, and that means the men who victimized these women will never be tried for their crimes. But as you're about to see, thanks to modern police science, the women are about to deliver a very different kind of justice to the criminals we now know abused them.

Ed Lavandera with tonight's "Outside the Law."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LAVANDERA (voice-over): In the midst of a steamy Texas summer 21 years ago, Lavinia Masters was an outgoing 13-year-old, a bundle of energy, spending her days playing with family in a west Dallas apartment complex.

Across town, 30-year-old Debbie Mulcahy was starting a new life. She was a young professional with ambitious dreams, just starting a high-tech job. But what happened in 1985 to these two, one a girl who had just entered her teen years, the other a woman in her prime, would change their lives forever.

LAVINIA MASTERS, RAPE SURVIVOR: He came in like a thief in the night. And I woke up to a knife on my throat, and a hand over my mouth, and a voice -- a raspy voice telling me to shut up and close your eyes.

DEBBIE MULCAHY, RAPE SURVIVOR: And then when I woke up, I realized, you know, this was not a dream. He was standing at the foot of my bed and he was shining a slight into my eyes so that I couldn't see anything. And I screamed a lot. And, you know, he told me to shut up, and then, you know, he proceeded to rape me.

LAVANDERA: These women have never forgotten the details of what happened to them back then. Their attackers were never caught. Nobody was ever brought to justice, and with no answers, Debbie's life began to unravel.

MULCAHY: In fact, I had gotten very depressed and, at one point, I got suicidal.

There we go. Let's go. Let's go feed, yes.

LAVANDERA: Debbie left the city several years after the attack and moved to a country home on 10 acres of land where she could be alone with her horses, but the trauma from the rape took its toll. Her hair fell out. She started having panic attacks. Today she rarely leaves her home, and sleeps with a gun at her side. She lost faith in the world around her.

MULCAHY: You know, you grow up and think you have this contract with society that -- actually that you think, you know, there's law and order and society is going to keep you safe, and if they don't keep you safe, they'll at least find you justice.

LAVANDERA: Lavinia says her childhood ended that night she lost her cute girl charm.

MASTERS: I felt dirty, I felt worthless, you know, I felt used and I felt -- and I also felt it was my fault.

LAVANDERA: Five years after the attack, Lavinia married, then had a son, but a happy exterior only masked the pain-filled heart. A few years ago, Lavinia started writing and filling notebooks with those feelings.

MASTER: Why do I feel so embarrassed? Why am I so confused? I did not want to be invaded. I did not ask to be abused.

LAVANDERA: Police investigated the rapes in 1985, fingerprints were taken, rape kits were used to gather physical evidence like semen, but DNA testing then wasn't the miracle crime solver it is today. Both trails went cold, police never found any suspects in either case.

(on camera): So you had to think your case was forgotten?

MULCAHY: Oh, yes, a long time ago. I felt like it was forgotten a week after it happened. You know, they took the report, they put it on the shelf, done.

LAVANDERA: Debbie and Lavinia thought the men who raped them had gotten away with it. Even if they were found, there was a five-year statute of limitations for rape in Texas at the time. The culprits could never be brought to justice, but not knowing who they were only aggravated the pain.

MASTERS: His ghost will still haunt me, you know, for years. Sometimes I will close my eyes and I will just see his image over me, and I hated that.

LAVANDERA: These two women who have never met, but who had their lives tragically altered in the same year both had a glimmer of hope at the same time, about a year ago. They answered a call from the Dallas Police Department's cold case unit.

Sergeant Patrick Welsh runs a program that tries to solve sexual assaults that are decades old. It was a long shot both women were willing to take, but Sergeant Welsh didn't make any promises.

SGT. PAT WELSH, DALLAS POLICE DEPARTMENT: We need to use everything that technology and law enforcement has today to solve their cases, even though it was 20 years ago. These cases, it's all about the victim. There's nothing about prosecution. It's about the victim and allowing them to have some closure, even though it won't be complete closure.

LAVANDERA: Sergeant Welsh spent weeks searching for the old case files. Slowly it all came together.

(on camera): Debbie and Lavinia's cases had literally gone cold. But fortunately for them, the DNA samples taken as evidence has been stored in freezers like this for more than 21 years. So when investigators decided to reopen their cases, all they had to do was come here and start searching through tens of thousands of samples to find what they were looking for.

(voice-over): Sergeant Welsh found the suspect's DNA. It took several months of testing, but when the crime lab submitted the DNA into a national database of criminals, they got two different hits. And just like that, police say two 21-year-old mysteries were solved.

MASTERS: That was the most exhilarating day I have ever had in a long time. I just -- I can't even explain how explosive I felt on the inside.

LAVANDERA: Just a few weeks ago, Sergeant Welsh showed the women the pictures of the men he says attacked them.

MASTERS: When I looked at the picture, I just cried. I had to turn my face away and I just cried, because I knew without a doubt that that was him.

MULCAHY: That was definitely kind of a flashback to that moment. And then all I said, oh, so that's the son of a bitch.

LAVANDERA: We've blurred their faces, because neither has been told DNA testing has linked them to these rape cases. Both men are already in prison on other charges. Inmates' DNA is now automatically entered into a national database. That's how the match was made.

But both men will soon be up for parole, and the women are working to make sure their alleged attackers don't get out. Debbie Mulcahy wrote a letter to the parole board the moment she saw the suspect's picture.

LAVANDERA: One person should never be allowed to harm so many people. It's in your power to see that he is kept away from potential victims, and I beg that you do that just for as long as possible. Sincerely, Debbie Mulcahy.

LAVANDERA (on camera): How good did it feel to write that?

MULCAHY: It felt good to be able to write it. It felt like I could actually maybe have a little bit of control in this situation. LAVANDERA (voice-over): Lavinia says she would love to see the look on her attacker's face when he finds out that he's been identified as the suspected rapist of a 13-year-old girl.

MASTERS: I'm going to be like one of his worst nightmares because he was my worst nightmare, and I want to return the favor, and let him know, you know, you did not get away with this. You did not get away with his.

LAVANDERA: For the first time in 21 years, Lavinia Master and Debbie Mulcahy are smiling again, no longer haunted by the men who scarred their lives.

Ed Lavandera, CNN, Dallas.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And the cold case program you've just seen has been contacted by 15 women so far. These are just the first cases to be solved.

A star athlete's life has completely changed in the past six weeks. How is he coping with allegations linking him to a terrible crime at Duke?

Later, where would you expect to find an outfit that looks something like this? Like straight out of "Mission Impossible"? Try the ball bark.

Before that, though, number four on our CNN.com countdown. Searchers find the body of a New Jersey college student who's been missing now for more than a month. John Fiocco's remains were found in a landfill in Pennsylvania. Authorities are still trying to learn what happened, but they say so far there doesn't appear to be any evidence of foul play.

Number three when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Tonight we are learning of new moves in the Duke University rape investigation. The D.A. reportedly looking at refiling charges against a half dozen Duke lacrosse players in unrelated cases for things like alcohol violations or even public urination.

Now, that could be a tactic to pressure the players to talk about what happened at a teen party last month where an exotic dancer says three players raped her. Well yesterday a judge ordered one suspect, Collin Finnerty, to stand trial in an unrelated assault case in D.C. Well tonight, Jason Carroll digs into the background of the other suspect.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Those closest to Reade Seligmann say privately he's turned to the Bible for understanding as to why he's in such serious trouble, particularly the story of Job, a man who had everything but was forced to suffer to prove his faith.

Seligmann, a gifted Duke University lacrosse player and the son of a privileged family, is charged along with another player of raping a young woman at a team party. Seligmann's lawyer says he will prove Seligmann wasn't at the scene when the alleged assault took place.

KIRK OSBORN, SELIGMANN'S ATTORNEY: It's hard to put in words the unfairness and the injustice. We look forward to showing that he is absolutely innocent as soon as we can.

CARROLL: Seligmann's friends at Duke say he is kind and outgoing, not the sort of person who could commit a crime like rape. Fellow student Nona Farahnik is standing by him.

NONA FARAHNIK, DUKE STUDENT: Everyone is talking about what a great guy he is and standing up for his character.

CARROLL: Seligmann grew up here in Essex Fells, New Jersey, an affluent neighborhood where yellow ribbons show support for his family. He was a star lacrosse player at Delbarton High School, a prestigious Catholic boys school. Essex Fells, mayor is a friend of the Seligmann family.

EDWARD ABBOT, MAYOR, ESSEX FELLS, NEW JERSEY: Reade is a upstanding, a good man. He's -- I've known Reade since probably he was six or seven-years-old.

CARROLL: But the Durham County district attorney says otherwise. He says he will show Seligmann and another player, Collin Finnerty, sexually assaulted an exotic dancer hired to perform for the team. The woman picked the two players out of a photograph lineup.

Initial DNA test results showed no match between the accuser and any of the lacrosse players. The D.A. is still waiting for results from a second round of tests.

MIKE NIFONG, PROSECUTOR: I'm the D.A., but I'm not the DNA guy. I don't do the testing. It's pretty complicated stuff.

CARROLL (on camera): Seligmann's parents are convinced the second round of DNA test results will show no match between the accuser and their son. In a conversation with Seligmann's father, he tells me how difficult it has been for him to watch his son go through this entire ordeal. He also says he will do everything in his power to defend him. Jason Carroll, CNN, Durham, North Carolina.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: And the D.A. says the results of the second round of DNA tests are expected back sometime in the next two weeks.

In a little bit, would you go out in public looking like this? On purpose? Especially if it saved you some money?

But first, Erica Hill has the Headline News Business Break.

(BUSINESS REPORT)

ZAHN: "LARRY KING LIVE" gets started about 14 minutes from now. Larry, you have a very, very special guest tonight, a former president I hear.

LARRY KING, CNN ANCHOR: Jimmy Carter joins us to talk about Mattie Stepanek. You remember Mattie Stepanek? He died at the age of 14, just about two years ago. That brave little kid who wrote poems and thought about world peace and went on programs like this and Oprah Winfrey, Jerry Lewis, died of muscular dystrophy. Well we're remembering Mattie Stepanek tonight with Jimmy Carter and Mattie's mother Jeni and Maya Angelou, our poet laureate. And a special new book that's out too. All at 9:00 Eastern, all right ahead.

ZAHN: I guess, Larry, I had the pleasure of interviewing that young man a couple times. What always amazed me is what he had inside. He gave us such hope that you couldn't believe the words were coming out of the mouth of this little kid that were so profound and so inspirational.

KING: Never met anything like him.

ZAHN: Well we look forward to the show tonight and honoring his very rich legacy. Thanks, Larry.

KING: Thanks, Paula.

ZAHN: So we move on to prices. We love to talk about prices here. Are you sick of the prices they charge for ballpark refreshments? Well Jeanne Moos may have found the perfect solution for you. But would you wear it? And what exactly would you put inside?

First though No. 3 in our CNN.com countdown. Actress Teri Hatcher is recovering from an eye injury. She was hurt on Tuesday when a light bulb exploded on the set of "Desperate Housewives." Hatcher says she should be back at work by the end of this week. We hope so, because we're supposed to sit down with her next week and talk to her. No. 2 on our list is up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: So how many times have you seen some new gadget and SAID I wish I had thought of that? If you enjoy a beer every now and then or a lot of them all at once, Jeanne Moos has found the perfect product for you.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You're looking at a guy with six-pack abs. We mean a real six-pack, six cans of beer poured in a pouch, the pouch goes in a sling. Slip the sling over your head. The sling gets velcroed on, put on a t-shirt and voila.

(on camera): Very realistic.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't get the joke.

MOOS: It's not a joke. It's a product.

(voice-over): A product that lets you go undetected say, to a ballpark or movie loaded with beer or any other beverage.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Put some vodka in there, get a vodka orange if you wanted to.

MOOS: So you don't have to shell out outrageous amounts for drinks. You drink from a hose you can still through your collar, sleeve or fly, oh, my.

The beer belly is unisex. It's like a bad-fitting bra. What a pair news assistant Chris Brown and I made. I sure had folks fooled.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do I say congratulations?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You definitely look like you're about seven months.

MOOS: When I revealed myself --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's very sexy. I like it!

MOOS: Sort of like those empathy bellies husbands wear to experience what their pregnant wives are going through. Self- described beer drinkers were smitten.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wow, serious, that's cool.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We need more people drinking at the ballpark, is that what you're saying? We don't have enough?

MOOS: They're sold at the beerbelly.com for $35, the owner of a California electronics company dreamed them up.

BROOKS LAMBERT, PRES., UNDER DEVELOPMENT INC.: It kind of happened as a gag between a couple buddies. We were just joking around, how do you beer into a movie or ball game without putting a can in your sock.

MOOS: Police say using the beer belly could violate open container laws. The Web site has tips for avoiding detection.

(on camera): If he's patted down, he's going to say, I have this medical device, you don't want to see it.

(voice-over): Sometimes it's hard to tell the fake from the real beer belly. (on camera): Where's your hose?

(voice-over): The creator has a follow-up product in mind, two pouches designed to add to a woman's bust.

LAMBERT: We're going to call it the wine rack.

MOOS: But for now if you want to carry a six pack undetected, you have to make yourself ugly with a beer gut.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But you're still drunk enough to feel attractive.

MOOS: You're the bar. Belly up. Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: For the record, we have a bunch of happy producers on our team who have been waiting for this product for a long time. The creators of the beer belly estimate they have sold a little over 5,000 so far.

In just a few minutes, former president Carter is the guest on "LARRY KING LIVE."

First, though, number two on our CNN.com countdown reports of tension between "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest and judge Paula Abdul. Seacrest has told "People" magazine that he and Paula aren't speaking to each other. Paula denies reports of the feud calling them, quote, ridiculous, but hey, isn't this all good to promote the show?

Coming up next, what would you do for a free gallon of gasoline? The most popular story on CNN.com, probably makes a lot of people angry, too. Do you have the nerve to try it.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Glorious spring night out there to enjoy. But we close tonight with number one on our CNN.com countdown. California drivers taking some pretty desperate measures as gas prices continue to climb. Towing services say that they are actually seeing more drivers deliberately running out of fuel on the freeways so they can get a free gallon of gas when the tow trucks come to help them out. How original.

That is it for all of us here tonight. Thanks so much for joining us. Tomorrow frightening new combination of crimes, identity theft and stalking. We're going to meet a woman whose personal information was posted on the Web without her knowledge and now is being bombarded by strange men who thinks she wants to meet them. Could it happen to you. Apparently, according to our experts, it can.

Meanwhile, thanks so much for joining us tonight. Have a great night "LARRY KING LIVE" starts in about two seconds.

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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