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Deep Freeze in the South; Some Iraqis Find Courage to Talk to U.S. Soldiers About Violence; More charges Expected Against Kidnapping Suspect

Aired January 17, 2007 - 11:00   ET


TONY HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: And good morning, everyone. You're with CNN. You're informed.
I'm Tony Harris.


Developments keep coming in to the NEWSROOM on this Wednesday, January 17th.

Here's what's on the rundown.

Winter messing with Texas. Ice shuts down major highways for this very reason. Yikes.

HARRIS: Yikes.

COLLINS: The storm slowly sliding eastward, the truck sliding out of the way of disaster.

HARRIS: The runway too short, too dark. The final flight of Comair 5191. The words of the pilots and the air traffic controller released today.

COLLINS: Women in stripes and plastic. They say their tent prison is too frosty. A tough sheriff giving them the cold shoulder -- in the NEWSROOM.

Misery coast to coast. Much of the country reeling from snow, ice, freezing rain or bitter cold. Parts of the Pacific Northwest, the Midwest, the Deep South, the East Coast all a big wintry mess. Some of the worst weather is in Texas.

We want to go ahead and get over to Chad Myers. He's standing by at the severe weather center to give us a little bit more and an update. We're looking at some of these pictures now coming out of California. We know the situation there with the freeze and the produce, but, boy it's kind of hitting all over the place.


COLLINS: And as you heard Chad mention, some of the worst weather in Texas.

Our Jacqui Jeras is standing by in San Antonio to give us sort of an idea of how things look there.

We've been watching you, Jacqui, there at the River Walk and cannot believe all the ice. I've really never seen it down there.

JACQUI JERAS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, you know, it's a very rare thing this far south, Heidi. So certainly has this town kind of at a standstill here today, not to mention all the hazardous conditions that they have.

But look. You can see we're getting little drips coming off of the trees right now. They've been ice-coated and now they're starting to melt. And every now and then you'll hear this crash and a big chunk of ice will fall on down. We had a couple of branches just around in this area come down as well, so it's still a dangerous situation even though things are improving.

This top railing that we have right here is now water. I think I just heard Chad mention that we're at 32 degrees. So the temperature has warmed up two degrees. But down here, underneath, this is all still ice, all along here.

So, we're expecting conditions to improve over the next couple of hours, but then we're going to run into another problem, and that's that tonight, of course, the sun is going to go down -- or what little sun that there is -- and temperatures are going to drop below freezing again, and everything that melted here today is going to freeze on the roadways and it's going to be black ice. You can't see it out there. So, travel will still going to be treacherous, at least through tomorrow.

COLLINS: All right. Jacqui Jeras keeping us posted from the southern state of Texas. At least last time I checked.

All right. Thanks, Jacqui.

HARRIS: Let's show you a live picture now as we wait for a news conference from the governor of Kentucky on that derailment that we spent so much time with yesterday there in Brooks, Kentucky. And in just a moment we'll show you where that news conference will be coming from. A reporter standing there in front waiting for the governor, Ernie Fletcher, who will give us an update on the situation.

When we left the story yesterday, we told you that a one-mile radius around the derailment had been evacuated, homes, businesses, and at least one school evacuated. You saw the massive fire just burning most of the morning right here on CNN in the NEWSROOM.

Efforts to douse the flames with thousands of gallons of foam haven't worked. And now emergency officials believe the remaining fires may just have to burn themselves out. Investigators say it could take days to determine what caused the 80-car train to jump the tracks.

When that news conference begins, we'll bring it to you.

No letup today in the bloodshed in Iraq. New attacks a day after the carnage at a Baghdad university.

The latest, a car bomb explodes at a market in the Sadr City section of Baghdad. At least 17 people are dead, almost three dozen wounded. That word from an interior ministry official.

An explosion also rocked the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk today, killing 10 people. Authorities say they targeted a police station. They think the explosives were detonated by remote control.

All this following violence that killed more than 100 people yesterday. Seventy died in an attack outside of a university in Baghdad. Funerals for the victims being held today.

Iraqis living in fear of brutal sectarian violence, but some are finding the courage to talk, to actually talk to U.S. forces.

The story from CNN's Michael Holmes, embedded with soldiers from an Army Stryker unit.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And I've been told that the neighbor next door was killed. Where was he killed at?

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): This is a story about people, people in a neighborhood, Dura, at the center of Baghdad sectarian bloodletting. The people who are willing to talk to U.S. soldiers about who's doing the killing.

We'd like to introduce you to these people, put a name and face to their pain and their fear, but to identify those who speak of the horrors they face could be to sentence them to the same fate as their loved ones.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They ask for $2,000.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And they take his car (ph).

HOLMES: Later, this family added that the Shiite neighbor and friend had been tortured, first his eyes gouged out.

(on camera): Do we know who did it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. We don't know. These days you don't know. People get killed left and right.

HOLMES (voice over): Next door, a man angry at the killing gave names, telling us later the reason. Fifteen of his friends and family have been killed in recent months.

We're on patrol with soldiers from a Stryker unit, the 520th, looking for weapons and insurgents but also the crucial information that could lead to the murderers on these streets.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's up? We're there. HOLMES: The military calls it human -- human intelligence. Many who ask the questions call it courage when someone answers those questions.

(on camera): Is it hard to get people to talk?

1ST SGT. BILL MONTGOMERY, U.S. ARMY: Yes, it is. They're scared. And there's a lot of intimidation by the local sectarian groups. And they've been very effective in scaring the local nationals. And they're not talking.

HOLMES (voice over): First Sergeant Bill Montgomery, on his second tour in Iraq, has been on dozens of clearing operations like this. But we watch as he spends time, a lot of it, in each house, questioning. Sometimes he hits pay dirt.

MONTGOMERY: Tell him we've got a lot of murders in this area. Who's responsible for the murders in this area?

HOLMES: A man we won't identify has an idea, and names someone he says is a low leader of the Mehdi army in the area. He follows the lead, asks more questions.

Then this: the accused man's house is raided. He's not here, and only one legal weapon is found. The man is put on a watch list.

(on camera): Families in Dura told us they rarely leave the house these days. It's simply too dangerous. No one said they send their children to school anymore. Be seen in the wrong place by the wrong person, and you could so easily end up one of the many bodies found tortured and murdered in the streets of Baghdad.

(voice over): At this house, a stark illustration of the sectarian threat here. We arrive to find this Sunni family packing. It's 11:15 a.m., and the previous night they had been told by Shiite militiamen to leave by noon, or they'd be killed and their house burned.

A dilemma for the soldiers. They want to stay the night to protect the family and, they hope, greet the insurgents. But the terrified family wants to leave. They insist, and so the soldiers came back to escort them out of Dura.

Another family forced from their home by Baghdad sectarian war.

Michael Holmes, CNN, Dura, Baghdad.


COLLINS: The Missouri kidnapping suspect, an alleged double life. Prosecutors today building their case against Michael Devlin, the pizzeria manager accused of kidnapping two boys and making them his prisoners. One for four days, the other for four years.

CNN's Chris Lawrence outside the courthouse in Union, Missouri, now. And Chris, tell us the next step in the case against the suspect.

CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Heidi, in less than 24 hours, Michael Devlin will be arraigned on a charge of kidnapping, and his defense attorneys tell us they plan to plead not guilty on his behalf.


LAWRENCE (voice over): The sheriff's office is concerned about safety and won't risk walking their prisoner into court. So Michael Devlin will be arraigned through a video camera near his jail cell.

SHERIFF GARY TOELKE, FRANKLIN COUNTY, MISSOURI: And it's because of security reasons. The sheriff's office isn't connected to the courthouse. There's about a two-mile distance between the two.

LAWRENCE: In the next 24 hours, the Franklin County prosecutor will be talking with his counterparts in other counties that are involved in the case.

ROBERT PARKS, PROSECUTOR: And we will be pooling all of our evidence and then deciding what charges will come out of what counts.

LAWRENCE: At least one is certain. Devlin is charged with kidnapping Ben Ownby, who is trying to fit back in after four days away from home.

DORIS OWNBY, BEN OWNBY'S MOTHER: He wanted to go back to school today. He was ready. But we're not quite ready for him to go back to school yet.

WILLIAM OWNBY, BEN OWNBY'S FATHER: We assured him we'd get him some homework to do, though.

LAWRENCE: The transition could be tougher for Shawn Hornbeck, who was missing for four years. He lived with Devlin for some or possibly all of that time. Shawn didn't go to school, but he did go out, and he did have friends. One neighbor says she saw a young girl visiting Devlin's apartment over the past few months, and investigators are trying to figure out how many other children may have been there.

TOELKE: That's part of the legwork that needs to be done. Any contacts Shawn may have had, he may have had, that's what we're talking about, basically.


LAWRENCE: Yes, police continue their work.

You heard Ben Ownby's family still trying to get back to normal. He disappeared after stepping off a school bus about 500 feet from his home. His family is still trying to work out some sort of routine in which, you know, they'll be comfortable in him getting home safely from school -- Heidi. COLLINS: Chris, we know Mr. Devlin's attorneys have concerns about what they call presentable clothing for that -- for that video that they'll be doing.

LAWRENCE: Yes, exactly. We just read a motion that they filed with the court. They say he doesn't have presentable clothing for court. And they don't want him to appear in the orange jumpsuit shackled.

They're worried that with all the TV coverage, that that image of him would be, you know, projected out to all these potential jurors and prejudice potential jurors. So they have filed a motion in order to get him some clothes in order to appear before the judge at this arraignment.

COLLINS: All right. CNN's Chris Lawrence in Union, Missouri.

Chris, thanks so much for the update.

Meanwhile, after the ordeal, one Missouri family speaks of their week in hell.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How did you feel when you saw that?

BEN OWNBY, KIDNAPPED IN MISSOURI: Pretty good that everybody was looking for me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody was looking for you, weren't they?


COLLINS: Now the alleged kidnapper held against his will. A closer look in the NEWSROOM.

HARRIS: Also, cancer, poverty and... high fashion? An unusual combination, but is saving lives in Harlem. Our Dr. Sanjay Gupta ahead with more in the NEWSROOM.

COLLINS: Inmates shiver, the sheriff feels the heat. The big chill at an outdoor jail.

HARRIS: And the challenges of Iraq on a smaller scale. It's the other war. And Defense Secretary Robert Gates visits the front lines ahead in the NEWSROOM.


COLLINS: Word from the Philippine army the leader of an al Qaeda-linked terror group is dead, killed in a shootout at a rebel camp on Jolo Island in the southern Philippines. Abu Sulaiman's Abu Sayyaf group has been blamed for a series of kidnappings and killings across the Philippines. The U.S. has had a $5 million bounty on him for years. In Afghanistan, new developments in the battle against the Taliban. NATO says its troops, along with Afghan forces,. arrested a prominent Taliban commander. It happened during a raid on a compound in southern Afghanistan in Helmand Province.

It came one day after reports Afghan agents arrested one of two spokesmen for the Taliban. That arrest took place in the eastern part of the country.

HARRIS: It is the other war, and new Defense Secretary Robert Gates is getting his first look at it.

CNN's Jamie McIntyre reports.


JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SR. PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It was Robert Gates' first up-close look at the other war he's responsible for winning, a war he admits he hasn't paid as much attention to until now. In meeting with commanders and Afghan president Hamid Karzai, the new U.S. defense secretary is hearing that problems in Afghanistan are eerily similar to, but on a smaller scale than Iraq.

First off, commanders tell Gates it's unlikely the U.S. can reduce the number of American ground troops, now at an all-time high of 24,000, any time this year or maybe even next. Instead, they warn even more troops may be required.

ROBERT GATES, DEFENSE SECRETARY: If the commanders in the field believe that more forces are required to do that, then I certainly would be strongly inclined to recommend that to the president.

MCINTYRE: Lieutenant General Karl Eikenberry, the top U.S. commander, has already requested that one U.S. infantry battalion, roughly 1,200 soldiers from the Army's 10th Mountain Division, stay on for a whole year, instead of going home after four months. And NATO is still waiting for other U.S. allies to send a reserve battalion of 1,200 additional NATO troops that the alliance promised last year but failed to deliver.

LT. GEN. KARL EIKENBERRY, U.S. COMMANDER: We're not talking about the need for large numbers of forces in order to have the margin of victory we need to win. Not a strong enemy. Small numbers of forces added to the mix here, small numbers of capabilities can be decisive.

MCINTYRE: As in Iraq, violence in Afghanistan have surged in recent months. The number of insurgent attacks jumped 300 percent since September, right after the Pakistani government negotiated a deal with tribal leaders harboring al Qaeda members in north Waziristan, along Afghanistan's eastern border. Al Qaeda now seems to be moving across the border with impunity.

GATES: ... and that the border area is a problem. That there are more attacks coming across the border. That there are al Qaeda network operating on the Pakistani side of the border.

MCINTYRE (on camera): The top American commander is predicting a violent spring, as the Taliban again mounts an annual offensive, but says U.S. and NATO forces will dominate. As is the case in Iraq, any real hope for ending the fighting depends on local police and army forces, which have not yet shown they're up to the task.

Jamie McIntyre, CNN, the Pentagon.


HARRIS: And still to come, a mystery about breast cancer. A doctor seeks to solve it and gets help from an unlikely source. That story in the NEWSROOM.

COLLINS: Battered by the cold, California fruit freezing on the tree. What impact will that have on your wallet? We're counting the costs ahead in the NEWSROOM.


HARRIS: The American Cancer Society just released new numbers that show cancer deaths have dropped in this country for a second straight year. Fighting cancer is a big part of our chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta's special series, "Saving Your Life."

Today, he looks at race and the battle against breast cancer.


DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): There's something in the eyes of a woman with breast cancer. Harlem surgeon Harold Freeman knows the look. Freeman set out to understand why black women are less likely than white women to get breast cancer, but twice as likely to die from it. His research found that poverty is the real problem. The lack of access, education, and resources.

DR. HAROLD FREEMAN, RALPH LAUREN CANCER CENTER: It is not acceptable that people that are poor should die because they are poor.

GUPTA: Then, in 2000, a turning point. Targeting breast cancer was en vogue, as Ralph Lauren launched his pink pony campaign and Freeman had found himself an ally to build a cancer center in Harlem.

FREEMAN: People were dying at a higher rate because they were poor and black. Mr. Lauren stood up and dressed immaculately, of course, and he simply said, Dr. Freeman, I will help you.

GUPTA: Jerona Smith is a single mom who now comes to the Ralph Lauren Cancer Center for care. Since being diagnosed with aggressive stage one breast cancer at age 29, it's been one shock after another.

JERONA SMITH, BREAST CANCER PATIENT: It's a lot to bear. I'm not working at this point in time because of chemotherapy. And it's a bit hard, but I got the help here. GUPTA: And that's one of Dr. Freeman's other innovations, the patient navigation program. Navigators are familiar with the health- care system and help women with everything from insurance to medications, makeup, and wigs.

FREEMAN: The five years survival rate in breast cancer at Harlem Hospital, which was initially 39 percent, before the navigation and screening, is now in the range of 70 percent.

GUPTA: Jerona knows the chemo and radiation ahead will tax her energy, but the fact is, she and women like her now have a better chance at beating breast cancer.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.


HARRIS: Cancer prevention is a big part of Dr. Sanjay Gupta's series "Saving Your Life." Watch it right here this weekend, Saturday, at 2:00 p.m. Eastern, and Sunday at 3:00 p.m. Eastern.

And you can be proactive in fighting cancer. CNN has developed a special Web site to help. Go to and click on "Web Extras." There you will find a link to a cancer screening map, resources in all 50 states.

Now, if you don't have access to the Internet, visit a local community center or library to log on. It's information that could save your life.

COLLINS: After the ordeal, one Missouri family speaks of their week in hell.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How did you feel when you saw that?

B. OWNBY: Pretty good that everybody was looking for me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody was looking for you, weren't they?


COLLINS: Now the alleged kidnapper held against his will. A closer look in the NEWSROOM.

And oranges, lemon, limes will soon cost you more. A wintry blast hits the groves ahead in the NEWSROOM.


COLLINS: Slipping and a sliding from coast to coast. Ice, snow, freezing rain, bitter cold making for another miserable day across a big part of the country. Not much comfort here.

This is Comfort, Texas. That town, many others in the Lone Star State paralyzed by a blast of ice and snow. A 300 mile stretch of Interstate-10 shut down after snow started falling on a layer of ice.

In the Pacific Northwest, schools and businesses across western Oregon shut down. The state legislature called off its session. And the snow and ice called a rash of traffic accidents.

More misery in the Midwest. Nearly a foot of snow has fallen so far on parts of Indiana. And in New Hampshire, a struggle just to stay warm. Thousands of homes and businesses still without power after Monday's ice storm there.

And frozen fruit. The cold snap in California taking a bite out of the citrus crop which could mean higher prices for you.

CNN's Greg Hunter takes a look.


GREG HUNTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): These frozen oranges may lead to some chilling prices for consumers this winter. California officials fear that up to three-quarters of the state's citrus crop has been destroyed by this week's cold weather.

GOV. ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER (R), CALIFORNIA: We don't really know exactly what the financial damage is yet, but we know that it is probably close to -- just the citrus industry alone, close to $1 billion.

HUNTER: Some California citrus growers say the market may not recover this year. Richard Pidduck has an 80-acre lemon and avocado farm in Santa Paula (ph). He says the freeze has already cost him hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost crops.

RICHARD PIDDUCK, CITRUS GROWER: This avocado, instead of being guacamole for some nice customer somewhere in the country is going to be on the ground and maybe feed a bear or one of my dogs.

HUNTER: The growers have been using every method they know to save their crops.

A.G. KAWAMURA, CALIF. FOOD & AG. SECY.: Many area that temperature just goes a little too low or the wind machine, the helicopters, the irrigation systems, and they can't bring that temperature up enough to save the crop.

HUNTER: It's simple supply and demand. With less fruit available, this $1 orange could end up costing you $2.

CESAR HERNANDEZ, ASST. MGR., GARDEN OF EDEN: I expect, like, maybe 50 percent to 100 percent increase.

HUNTER: The last time California was hit by such a deep freeze was in 1998. Prices for navel oranges jumped 40 percent. These days many suppliers get their citrus from other countries, like Brazil, helping to offset high prices caused by such a freeze. But even with high prices, some consumers won't change their produce shopping habits so quickly. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I probably still buy it, but maybe not in the amount that I normally do.

HUNTER: Officials and growers say it's too soon to tell just how bad the damage is, how many crops were lost, and whether the cold has harmed the citrus trees, not just the fruit that grows on them.

Greg Hunter, CNN, New York.



HARRIS: A tough law man. Giving the cold shoulder to his inmate, the latest complaints. Brahm Resnik of Phoenix affiliate KPNX has that story.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can't talk, you complain too much.

BRAHM RESNIK, KPNX REPORTER (voice-over): Sheriff Joe Arpaio taking some heat.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is our first time ever complaining. Our tent is raggity. Air comes all through it. We come off of work and ...

RESNIK: His inmates feeling the chill.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Last night was probably the worst I've had here.

RESNIK: Overnight temperatures at Tent City hovered in the mid 20s, the coldest ever at the outdoor jail.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I woke up this morning about 4:00 to go inside and defrost my toes because I couldn't feel them anymore.

RESNIK: The only heat in these tents is body heat. Whatever's left of it. Inmates get five blankets, a long-sleeved undershirt, and they improvise.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) it actually keeps you warm somewhat.

RESNIK: Arpaio was warming up his publicity machine for a visiting Court TV crew.

SHERIFF JOE ARPAIO, MARICOPA COUNTY, ARIZONA: What standards? I have no standards. They're in jail.

RESNIK: Inmates say they're not asking for much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We want the sheriff to give us more blankets or Army blankets or give us heaters. RESNIK: All the sheriff offers is cold comfort.

ARPAIO: It's something that is humane. They all seem healthy to me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I can't even talk.


RESNIK: In Phoenix, Brahm Resnik, 12 News.


COLLINS: Prosecutors in Missouri today building their case against kidnapping suspect Michael Devlin. The pizzeria manager is due to be arraigned tomorrow. He's accused of kidnapping two boys in the St. Louis area.

Police say he held Shawn Hornbeck captive for 4 and a half years. Ben Ownby on the left was found with Shawn in the same apartment four days after he disappeared. Ben and his family spoke to CNN affiliate KSDK about their nightmarish week.


DORIS OWNBY, MOTHER OF BEN OWNBY: The last few days at home has been -- has been nice. We've had some time and we feel a little bit more relaxed and, you know, Ben's gotten some time to himself. Yes, we're working on it.

QUESTION: Any anger?

D. OWNBY: I don't want to dwell on that. I can't dwell on that. I don't want it to consume me. I'm just concerned with my family. You know, so ...

QUESTION: Don, I'll ask you the same question. Any anger?

DON OWNBY, FATHER OF BEN OWNBY: All my energy is focused on Ben being back and Doris and Amanda. I don't have time for that.

QUESTION: Positives, not negative?

DON OWNBY: Positive only. This is a good thing now, so we're moving forward with the good thing.

QUESTION: Have you been able to talk to Ben about where he was and what happened to him on those ...

DON OWNBY: We're not going to push him. It's just part of the healing process. He wants to talk to us, we're there for him. He knows that. Just a day at a time, you know, whatever's best for him.


BEN OWNBY, KIDNAPPED VICTIM: Yes? QUESTION: Did you see any of the news coverage about you while you were gone?

B. OWNBY: Yes.

QUESTION: How did you feel when you saw that?

B. OWNBY: Pretty good that everybody was looking for you.

QUESTION: Everybody was looking for you, weren't they?

B. OWNBY: Mm-hmm.


HARRIS: Great kid. Smart parents.

Still to come in the NEWSROOM, a laundry list of charges, a major indictment against a man called the baseline killer. Can people in Phoenix finally relax? That's ahead in the NEWSROOM.

COLLINS: A beating videotaped, uploaded to the internet for all in the world to see. High school girls out of control in the NEWSROOM.


COLLINS: We are learning more now about last summer's fatal Comair crash. The National Transportation Safety Board releasing important files this morning, including transcripts of the cockpit voice recording.

CNN confirms reports that the copilot said it was, quote, "weird" there were no lights on the runway. Investigators have said the plane took off from the wrong runway. The control tower was understaffed. Forty-nine people died in the august crash in Lexington, Kentucky. The NTSB has not made a final ruling on the accident. We, of course, will continue to watch developments, and we'll update you throughout the day right here on CNN.

HARRIS; Toxic chemical spill smoldering this morning. This is the site of a train derailment near Louisville, Kentucky. You saw the massive fire burning here on CNN yesterday. What a mess that was. Residents not yet allowed back home. Efforts to douse the fires with thousands of gallons of foam haven't worked.

Now emergency officials are starting a new operation to try to extinguish those fires and hope to have it all under control by tomorrow morning.


GOV. ERNIE FLETCHER (R), KENTUCKY: I've spoken to the Environmental Protection Agency. We have a representative here. They have approved this flaring operation, so it appears that in the next two to three hours that will begin, and last about 16 to 18 hours. (END VIDEO CLIP)

COLLINS: A prosecutor tells people in Phoenix the reign of terror has ended. The alleged baseline killer now facing dozens of felony charges. The indictment includes nine counts of first-degree murder, 15 counts of sexual assault. Mark Goudeau is accused of attacking more than 30 people over 10 months.


ANDREW THOMAS, MARICOPA CO. ATTY.: All 74 of the charged crimes are dangerous felonies. Sixteen of the charges are classified as dangerous crimes against children. These charges allege that Mark Goudeau brutally assaulted men, women and children throughout the valley in a spree of random violence. The reign of terror has ended; The quest for justice has just begun.


COLLINS: And now to New York. Prosecutors say what you are about to witness is a crime, a schoolyard beatdown. Three teenaged girls accused of attacking a young rival. Investigators say the 13- year-olds and 14-year-old first traded insults on the Internet, and that is where this videotape wound up. It drew a big audience, including school officials and police. The three girls are now charged. The girl who was beaten is fine. Incidentally, her parents first declined to press charges, that is, until this video hit the Internet.

HARRIS; "YOUR WORLD TODAY" is coming up at the top of the hour. Ralitsa Vassileva is standing with a preview for us.

Ralitsa, good morning.

RALITSA VASSILEVA, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning to both of you, Heidi and Tony.

We're going to go along and take you with some U.S. soldiers who are going house to house in Baghdad and finding that many families are there are just a deadly threat away from being forced from their homes just for being the wrong sex living in the wrong neighborhood.

Also, very different reality check in Britain, where viewers of a reality show are outraged over the treatment of an Indian Bollywood actress on that show. Are her housemates bullies, or are they outright racists?

And also, if you're like me, you've probably been thinking about that iPod phone, the new iPhone that was unveiled by apple last week. You're probably thinking, well, it's going to be good. We can watch our movies on it, listen to music. Well, people in Asia aren't thinking about it; they're actually living it, and they're already hooked on phones like that. We'll check in to see how they like them so we can make up our minds.


VASSILEVA: We'll see.

HARRIS: I like that idea.

VASSILEVA: I love it. I'm thinking about it.

COLLINS: I wonder if they're watching the podcast.

HARRIS: Let's hope so.

VASSILEVA: Of course. That's why they get their phones in Asia.

COLLINS: I know.

All right, Ralitsa, thank you.

HARRIS: Still to come -- Baby Noah survived the flood, more than a year before he was born. Huh? We'll explain in the NEWSROOM.

COLLINS: And here it is, you already know to catch us weekday mornings from 9:00 to noon Eastern. Did you know you can take us where with you anywhere on your iPod? The CNN NEWSROOM podcast is available 24/7, right on your iPod.


COLLINS: A Sacramento radio station firing 10 employees after the death of a listener. Jennifer Strange died after taking part in a water-drinking contest. Strange and other contestants tried to win a Nintendo Wii by downing a lot of water without a bathroom break. One contestant said Strange seemed ill when she went on the air. Hours later, she was found dead at her home. The coroner believes she died from water intoxication. Authorities not pursuing criminal charges.

HARRIS: A disturbing discovery to tell you about along the Northeast coast. Dolphins are washing up there in unusually high numbers. But why?

CNN's Allan Chernoff has the story.


ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Dolphins washed up along the shore in exclusive East Hampton, Long Island. A rare spot for dolphins to appear this time of year. One more found this morning, bringing the total dead to five.

CHUCK BOEMAN, RIVERHEAD FOUNDATION: They have gotten themselves up in a very small creek area with a very narrow inlet that they'd not be able to get back out into the open water.

CHERNOFF: In Boston harbor Sunday, six dolphins were found dead on the beach in Quincy.

TONY LACASSE, NEW ENGLAND AQUARIUM: We haven't ever had a mass stranding of dolphins inside Boston harbor within any of our staff's memory.

CHERNOFF: Even along Cape Cod, where some dolphins get stuck every winter, there has been an unusually high number of deaths -- 46 so far, according to the Cape Cod stranding network. That's double last year's count at this date, and four times the year before.

What's going on? The tides along Cape Cod were extremely high earlier this month, and in the past week, winds have been strong. Both can cause dolphins to get stuck on the cape's sand flats.

LACASSE: So flat that if you lose 10 feet of water to a falling tide, he might have to swim three-quarters of a mile, a mile, even more, to get to safe water. And what happens is that you're a hungry dolphin and you're engaged in a little bit of a risky behavior, and that's a kind of thing that -- there's a consequence to pay.

CHERNOFF: Could warm weather also be having an impact? Experts say there's a possible connection. The weather may be changing distribution of the dolphin's prey. Fish like herring may be swimming closer to shore than usual, possibly causing the dolphins to get into trouble.



HARRIS: Don Lemon, back in the NEWSROOM 1:00 p.m.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: She's asking people personal questions. Would you like to have the same job next year? That's none of your business.

COLLINS: Well, I just do what I'm told.

LEMON: I'm just kidding. We have the same job.

COLLINS: We do. Be nice for the folks at home.

LEMON: Yes, we have a lot coming up today at 1:00, some very serious stuff. You remember Elizabeth Smart, and of course now Ben Ownby, Shawn Hornbeck. Most of us know the names and faces, but how many missing kids never make the news?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was like, you know, my daughter is missing just like their daughter's missing, just their daughter is out there missing, you know, they child, their missing. And why they can't put her on talk shows?


LEMON: And today in the NEWSROOM, we'll look at the roles of race and class when it comes to getting the kind of attention that can break a kidnapping case. Also, it's shaping up to be a very crowded field when presidential primaries roll around. Who's in? Who's thinking about get in? Who's thinking about thinking in? Who's thinking about thinking about getting in? Thinking about thinking about thinking about getting in? We'll give you the candidates' scorecard.

All that and a whole lot more when we get started at 1:00 p.m. Eastern.

COLLINS: It might be easier just to talk about who's not getting in. And faster.

LEMON: Yes, it would be a much smaller scorecard, right?

COLLINS: Yes, I think so.

LEMON: Thanks, guys. See you.

COLLINS: Yes, we'll be watching Don. Thanks.

Meanwhile, baby Noah survived the flood. Look at this little man. More than a year, though, before he was even born. We'll explain that story coming up in the NEWSROOM.


COLLINS: So we get a little bit of whip cream for us, a sweet story that we told you about yesterday.

HARRIS: Boy, did we like this one. It was something good from Hurricane Katrina. Lawman in flat-bottomed boats rescued hundreds of frozen embryos from the flood waters.

COLLINS: It's a pretty amazing story. One of those embryos was born right there, a baby boy, yesterday.

And here's the topper -- his parents named him Noah.


GLEN MARKHAM, BABY NOAH'S FATHER: We had a problem trying to pick out a name. What we were going to do before the baby was born was put the names that we had thought of in a hat, and have Witt (ph) pick one, right, my oldest son.

And my sister, Pam, she called and said, you know, she thought of a good name, and she told us Noah, and it was a perfect fit for the newborn baby, and so we used it.


COLLINS: Aww, love it. CNN NEWSROOM continues just one hour from now.


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