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Should Hole in the Side of Shuttle Atlantis Worry NASA?; Presidential Candidates on the Stump
Aired June 9, 2007 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RICK SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Rick Sanchez right here in the CNN NEWSROOM. We've got a lot to cover, only an hour to do it, so let's get started.
Shuttle "Atlantis" in orbit tonight, but Houston, we have a problem. Should we be worried about this hole? It's about four inches long. We're going to have the latest from NASA on that one.
One mystery solved, plenty remain. What happened inside this Connecticut house where a missing girl was found? Pornographic evidence, if it's real, it is sickening.
Can you call this Italian hospitality? President Bush, wherever he goes lately, angry mobs seem to follow. We're going to have the details from Rome on this one.
But first, the candidates on the stump this weekend. John Edwards in New Hampshire, Senator Clinton in Michigan and Iowa, Senator John McCain in Iowa, Senator Chris Dodd in Iowa. See a pattern
A straw poll is in August there. The caucus in January. And so goes the courtship of Iowa's voters.
The political question this week, is the immigration deal dead or is it just on life support at this point? Today, President Bush tried to resuscitate it, you might say, by urging Congress to pass it, even though the Senate even failed to even vote on it. The president stressed once again this bill does not offer amnesty to illegal immigrants. He says. He argues that they'd have to earn their current U.S. Immigration status.
So after hearing from the president and from the candidates tonight on CNN, what do you think? What do average Americans have to say about this immigration debate? Here's our panel. Go ahead, Roger. Roll it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Raise your hand if you think English should be the official language of the United States of America. Key word "official." I heard you grunting while you were hearing that conversation. So go ahead and start us off.
NEY LAWSON, NON-PROFIT EXECUTIVE: Well, first of all, we're not -- the legislation is not separating families. It's a decision to come here illegally is separating families. The second point...
SANCHEZ: But let's go back to the language issue. Do you think it should be - there's something...
LAWSON: OK, the language issue. OK.
SANCHEZ: There's one thing about making it the language of the United States. The other thing is saying it's the official language of the United States. Is there a difference?
LAWSON: Wait a minute.
RON LIEBERMAN, CORPORATE ATTORNEY: I don't think most people know what that means. And I think Senator Clinton spoke well about that. It's not whether or not it's official or national. People here in this country need to speak English. And we understand that, but to use it to what ends and to what means.
SANCHEZ: But don't they speak English already? Most - all statistics say by the time you get into the second generation when you come to the United States, you are speaking English.
ELIZABETH ROSS LIEBERMAN, NON-PROFIT CONSULTANT: I think that literacy and educating people in our country is important to get them to be able to survive and be successful in our country and be able to fit in with the economy that we're creating, but I don't think that we need to do that at the expense of letting people have the advantage of being treated fairly in order to make educated decisions.
SANCHEZ: I understand. And I know you're dying to get back into this. Go ahead.
LAWSON: I'm dying to get back into this, because what are they doing voting if they're coming here and can't speak English and are illegal?
SANCHEZ: So by golly, you know...
LAWSON: You know, I don't want you reading a ballot in another language to decide who's going to be elected in this country.
SANCHEZ: So it sounds like you've got a serious problem with these 12 million people. What do you want to do with them, Ney?
LAWSON: What do I want to do with them?
SANCHEZ: What do you want to do with them?
LAWSON: I don't know what to do with them. First of all, the idea that you're going to go out and find them and decide who the criminals are send them back, you can't find them then now. They're illegal!
SANCHEZ: So we've got legislation on the...
LAWSON: They're -- they're hidden already! SANCHEZ: ...table now, that's already being discussed. Raise your hand if you've seen the legislation and you think it's OK? Or do you think it's amnesty, as a lot of people are calling it? You think it's amnesty? Raise your hand. You think it's amnesty.
MELISSA PALACIOS, GRADUATE STUDENT: Just going back to the English thing. I'm a U.S. citizen, but I just came back to this country three years ago.
SANCHEZ: You're from Venezuela?
PALACIOS: Yes, I'm Venezuela.
PALACIOS: So I still feel like sometimes I'm 100 percent confident in English, but that doesn't mean that I speak the language. That doesn't mean that immigrants don't come to this country. They want to take English classes. So I think that...
SANCHEZ: Are you personally affected almost, let me use the word, insulted by this immigration debate that's going on in the United States? Or not? Or do you understand it? Do you get it?
PALACIOS: I -- actually, I like it. I think actually, that's the way to start. I think that -- I mean, there is the fact that 12 million people -- more than 12 million people here already live in this country. So there are -- we need to create a legal avenue for them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: We're going to freeze it right there. And then we're going to pick it up again. What about the Iraq War? What Americans say about that in our next panel segment, coming up in just a little bit.
Now does the name Prince Bandar mean anything to you? You'd have to be paying pretty close attention to the news to know that he's a Saudi royal, a Bush family friend, and business associate, a very, very rich man, and now the center of a scandal on alleged kickbacks we learned. The dollar figures will make you dizzy on this one.
Here's CNN's Brian Todd.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A wealthy Saudi prince with deep connections to America, an estate in Aspen worth $135 million, tutor on foreign affairs to George W. Bush before he became president, confidant of George Bush senior, Dick Cheney, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, a crucial broker in the first Gulf War.
Now questions now about another deal he brokered. "The Guardian" newspaper in the BBC report Prince Bandar bin Sultan, former Saudi ambassador to the U.S., may have gotten up to $2 billion in secret payments from a British defense firm. The payments they say took place over 20 years and were sanctioned by the British government in return for Bandar's help in negotiating a multibillion dollar deal to sell British war planes to the Saudis in 1985.
The British firm BAE denies wrongdoing. But prime minister Tony Blair admits he supported a decision to quash an internal British investigation.
TONY BLAIR, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I don't believe the investigation certainly would of led anywhere, except to the complete wreckage of a vital strategic relationship for our country in terms of fighting terrorism, in terms of the Middle East, in terms of British interests there.
TODD: Through his attorney, Prince Bandar issued a statement denying taking what he called backhanders. He says he was authorized to handle the money channeled to the now defunct Riggs Bank in Washington, that the accounts were audited by the Saudi government. And no stage have the ministry defense and aviation or the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Finance identified any irregularities in the conduct of the accounts. But that, too, leaves questions.
THOMAS LIPPMAN, MIDDLE EAST INSTITUTE: Who is the ministry of defense? The minister of defense is Bandar's father, Prince Sultan, who is also next in line for the throne.
TODD: Thomas Lippman, who covered Saudi Arabia for "The Washington Post," says payments like these are standard with the Saudis and often justified by Western governments and companies.
LIPPMAN: This has been a relationship that has helped both sides, but it's also one in which business is not done the way it's done in Australia or Canada.
TODD (on camera): Prince Bandar says he is consulting with his attorneys regarding these media reports, but analysts say they likely will not affect his current standing as Saudi Arabia's national security advisor and may never be reported in the Saudi media.
Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.
SANCHEZ: Still ahead -- what Americans, not politicians, are saying about the Iraq War.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They'll destroy their countries, would kill -- we caused like 600,000 deaths in Iraq. And then we say, oh, it's their fault. It doesn't make sense.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: It's heading toward the international space station tonight, but will this hole prevent the shuttle from getting home safely?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When he dumped out that water, he put his life in their hands. And they were going to keep him safe.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: The story of a man who dies of thirst because he was denied water. That's what his family says. I'll take you to Utah for this one.
SANCHEZ: A hole in the space shuttle. What does it mean for re- entry? What are Americans saying about the topics the candidates tackle?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When enough mothers have lost enough sons, when people really become irate on what's going on, it will be just like the '60s again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Sounding off on Iraq and immigration. It's raw and it's real.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was just plain indifference to human suffering and just much of stupidity.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: How could her son die of thirst during a survival course when there was water to drink? I go to Utah to investigate. And you'll see it in the CNN NEWSROOM.
And we welcome you back. I'm Rick Sanchez. Tough day for the Iraqi police force today in central Baghdad and elsewhere. Mortar attacks, roadside bombs, car bombs all over the country. 24 people killed in all, most of them police officers. This hospital in Sadr City treated more than a dozen people after a mini bus blew up near a police patrol.
On the same day, Iraqi and American troops swooped down on suspected terrorist hideouts in Baghdad and Fallujah and north of Taji. The target, al Qaeda. The U.S. military spokesperson said the al Qaeda weapons distributor was put out of business there. And they nabbed the man who was allegedly about to take a senior leadership position in the terror network.
The war in Iraq. You hear about it, you talk about it, you debate it. One of those just about every day. We bring back our panel now to pick up where the politicians have left off.
ELIZABETH ROSS LIEBERMAN, NON-PROFIT CONSULTANT I think it's a really tough situation. I mean, I don't -- I think that -- we all know it's a tough situation. I mean, we want our troops to come home. And we need Iraq to take responsibility for what they're doing and for their country.
SANCHEZ: How much time do we give them? A show of hands. Do we give them 'til the end of this year?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No timetables.
SANCHEZ: Not till the end of next year? No timetables, so we stay, we stay?
LAWSON: When you start barking on the streets again with peace signs and start demanding that we bring the troops home, the troops will come home. The American people reach the breaking point -- you're underestimating the American people. When enough mothers have lost enough sons, when people really become irate with what is going on, it'll be just like the '60s again.
LAWSON: And they will bring them home.
LT. COL. ROBERT LEDEE, U.S. MARINE CORPS (RET.): I want to share something.
SANCHEZ: Go ahead, Robert.
LEDEE: No one likes war. But if we're going to go to war, let's do it right. Take these restrictions off.
SANCHEZ: Is this the right war? Is this the right war? Is Iraq the right war?
LEDEE: The initial deal was. I think it was.
SANCHEZ: Everybody agree with him? Iraq was the right war? We haven't heard from you, Samir. Go ahead.
SAMIR MOUKADDAM, ARAB-AMERICAN ACTIVIST: Well, first, this blaming of the Iraqis for us going to war and destroying the country, the Clinton is playing quite...
SANCHEZ: Because she's saying it's now up to them to fix their problems?
MOUKADDAM: We destroy their country. We killed - we caused like 600,000 deaths in Iraq. And then we say oh, it's their fault. It doesn't make sense. Kucinich got it right. He called it an occupation. We need to end funding the military occupation in Iraq and other military occupations in the Middle East. That will bring us security, including Israeli's occupation of Palestine.
SANCHEZ: Samir, we thank you for your point. Go ahead.
RON LIEBERMAN, CORPORATE ATTORNEY: I guess I'm very frustrated to hear that, because the - you know, to say that the U.S. should just withdraw out of that region just doesn't seem to be -- it's just...
SANCHEZ: Depends on the region you're talking about. We're talking about Iraq. Is Iraq a legitimate war?
LIEBERMAN: Look at, we have one ally.
SANCHEZ: But is Iraq a legitimate war, given the reasons that we were told we were going to go there, now looking at it in hindsight, was a legitimate?
LIEBERMAN: I think right now -- I don't think it's legitimate at this point in time. I think we do need to withdraw, but I think we can withdrawal from the region. If you have presidents of Iran.
SANCHEZ: You have 10 seconds, Ron. You got to finish it up.
LIEBERMAN: .Who wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth and trying to get nuclear weapons, this country has stand up for that. Absolutely has to. The candidates need to stand up for that.
SANCHEZ: And we'll finish on that point.
SANCHEZ: Coming up, the conversation continues here. A real life CSI in Florida. Skeletal remains. An inmate on death row. Is there a link that could solve as many as eight different cases?
Also, space shuttle's thermal blanket is ripped. And can the astronauts now return safely, despite that hole you see right there in the middle of your screen? The latest from NASA when we come back.
SANCHEZ: And we welcome you back. Rick Sanchez here. NASA scientists are saying they're now downplaying it, but there is plenty of concern tonight over what appears to be exterior damage to the space shuttle "Atlantis." There it is, as it was just taking off.
Apparently, there's a thermal blanket that was either moved or somehow torn during yesterday's liftoff. Today, the crew used a robotic arm to get a better look at the damage. And NASA mission managers talked about that just a couple of hours ago. Here it is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN SHANNON, NASA MISSION MGT. TEAM: The only area of foam loss that we saw that was not expected, and by expected we lose some what we call the popcorn foam in that inter tank region between the two tanks, the locks tank and the hydrogen tank. But we saw a little six- inch by three-inch divot by that big feed line that takes oxygen to the main engines.
That is very similar to foam loss as we've seen in previous flights. We expect it will give us some data on the mechanics of why foam comes off in that area. And we can work to improve that on future tanks. This is not any kind of a threat to the vehicle at all. It's just a good engineering data. And so we're happy the crew was able to take that picture.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: There was a similar situation four years ago. That's why this is important. CNN's Miles O'Brien compares the past with the present.
MILES O'BRIEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It is a four-inch triangular gap in a thermal blanket and it has NASA's attention. 4.5 hours after a nearly flawless countdown and launch, the crew of "Atlantis" and flight controllers in Houston spotted the problem during a routine TV survey of the spaceship. The two-inch thick blanket is either torn or bunched up at a place where it meets some heat resistant tiles.
(on camera): The torn or bunched up thermal blanket is located right about here in the front part of this hump just to the left of "Atlantis'" tail. It houses a big rocket that is used for major navigation changes when the shuttle was in space.
But here's the key point. It's one of the coolest places on a shuttle orbiter as it returns to earth. These locations, where you see the black tiles and the other material that's darker, the temperature can approach 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Up here, though, the temperature usually is about 600 degrees.
(voice-over): That's exactly where "Columbia's" heat shield was breached in January of 2003. A large piece of foam fell off the external fuel tank about a minute after launch, leaving a big hole in the leading edge of the wing. 16 days later, the shuttle disintegrated in the heat of re-entry, killing the crew of seven.
Since then, NASA has changed the way the insulating foam is applied to those external fuel tanks. And on this launch, only a few small pieces broke off harmlessly. Not a surprise, not a worry, say the engineers.
WAYNE HALE, SHUTTLE PROGRAM MANAGER: It was at the very end or just past the aerodynamically sensitive time. And so that is something that we have come to understand and expect.
O'BRIEN: It's too early to say what might have hit the quilted blanket made of silica and woven glass. During the first shuttle mission in 1981, NASA had not yet developed a thermal blanket. And no less than 16 heat resistant tiles fell off the orbital maneuvering system pod on "Columbia". And of course, that mission ended with a happy landing. So given the history, NASA engineers say they're not too worried. As one told me, "It doesn't raise my blood pressure at all.
Miles O'Brien, CNN, Cocoa Beach, Florida.
SANCHEZ: And certainly, we're going to be following that one for you.
Well still, a young man in survival training doesn't get the - well, the basic ingredient for survival.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I said, well, then, fail him for that part of the course. At least he has water and he would have survived.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Imagine dying of thirst. I'm going to take you to Utah and also talk to the victim's mother.
Then is there a link? Police in Missouri are looking at a Kansas murder suspect in the case of a missing girl. Much more to come in Kansas and Missouri. We'll put them together for you right here in the NEWSROOM.
SANCHEZ: Welcome back. A special report for you tonight about the ridiculousness of a man dying of thirst in the Utah desert. Ridiculous, because he wasn't lost, he wasn't alone, and get this, somebody right next to him had water for him to drink. I traveled to Utah to investigate this one for you.
SANCHEZ (voice-over): It was about a year ago, July 16th, when David Buschow and 11 others set out on an intense wilderness survival course offered by Boulder Outdoor Survival School, BOSS, for short.
(on camera): This survival experience is going to be like few others. They were to hike for miles at an elevation of 6,000 feet in the Utah desert. The temperature? Over 100 degrees.
(voice-over): We sought out another Utah wilderness guy, Doyle Moss, who is not connected with the BOSS course. He says at the canyon floor, it was probably hotter.
So a canyon becomes almost a furnace?
DOYLE MOSS, MOSSBACK PRODUCTIONS: Yes. In actuality, sure. Any green foliage, I mean those rocks will just radiate that heat and just, you know, it's probably 10, 20 degrees even warmer.
SANCHEZ: The group was led into the canyons to find water by digging into the red dirt. However, the dig turned up nothing. On the second day of their hike, around sunrise, the group came here to Deer Creek. They were allowed to dip their cups into the creek to get water. Dave Buschow took his water bottle and filled it from the creek. And as he was walking away, two staff members told him you've got to pour it out. His family says it was that action that sealed his fate.
RON BUSCHOW, VICTIM'S BROTHER: At that point, when he dumped out that water, he put his life in their hands. And they were going to keep him safe.
PAT HERBERT, VICTIM'S MOTHER: When I heard that, I was just totally appalled. And it -- I just felt like I had been punched in the stomach.
SANCHEZ: After leaving Deer Creek and hiking the canyons and bluffs for hours, the group tried, but failed again, to find water. According to the sheriff's report, Buschow began showing signs of dehydration. First, leg cramps. Then he became delusional, confusing a tree for a person and, worse, as the family learned from the report...
HERBERT: He couldn't see in color. He said I'm seeing in black and white. In other words, it's affecting his brain so that he couldn't see in color.
SANCHEZ: And you understand that he told people that?
SANCHEZ: And that is what? If he's seeing in black and white and if he's hallucinating, that means he's?
BUSCHOW: His brain is literally frying, you know? It's affecting every part of his body at this point. His speech, his balance, his vision. I mean, there's -- how much more does he have to show before he gets a drink of water?
SANCHEZ: The BOSS survival school officials refuse to answer our questions. The website states the course is not for the faint of heart and that it will take students, "past those false limits your mind has set for your body."
But on July 17th, Dave Buschow's body reached its limit just 100 yards from water found in a cave. Cramped, delusional, and losing consciousness, he dropped to the ground.
HERBERT: He said to the instructor who was standing right there with him, "I can't go on. Can you bring me the water?"
SANCHEZ: What did the instructors do?
HERBERT: They just kept pushing and pushing and saying "You can do it, you can do it, you can do it."
SANCHEZ: The sheriff's report says that instructors, most to who are CPR trained were carrying water themselves, but even though Buschow said he need water, they didn't offer it to him. To pass the course, students must only drink from natural sources like a stream or spring.
BUSCHOW: I said, well, then fail him for that part of the course. At least he has water and he would of survived.
SANCHEZ: David Buschow did not survive. He died with the instructor standing over him.
HERBERT: It was just plain indifference to human suffering and just much of stupidity.
SANCHEZ: Because of the incident, BOSS' permit for using federal land has been partially suspended by the U.S. Forest Service. If they want it back, the Forest Service says they must change their course policy to include, among other things, that students carry water in a 32-ounce bottle.
If they hadn't agreed to integrate these new changes, you wouldn't of allowed them to use the land?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
SANCHEZ: CNN has learned from Forest Service officials that the BOSS survival school will change its survival course policy on water. But that brings little comfort to the family of Dave Buschow.
HERBERT: My son died. My son died right there on the spot so close to water. And it's just a nightmare.
SANCHEZ: Joining us now is Dave's mom, Pat Herbert, once again. I'm so sorry for your loss, Pat.
HERBERT: Thank you very much, Rick.
SANCHEZ: When you said to the school or did you say to the school why didn't you give him water when he was asking for it? What did they -- how have they responded?
HERBERT: Well, they just have the mentality of pushing their students, you know, just because of the philosophy of their course that they have to push them to the very end,not really taking into consideration that the danger that they're putting the students in.
SANCHEZ: So you hold them responsible for your son's death?
HERBERT: Oh, most definitely, most definitely.
SANCHEZ: They would say that if you read their literature, that he should of known what he was in for, that it was an extreme survival course.
HERBERT: Well, he would certainly know that there are inherent dangers in being, you know, out on a survival course. Whether those dangers are with snake bite, or falling in a ravine, or lightning, or anything that's totally out of his control. He certainly would not think that he would die of dehydration with an instructor standing over him with water.
SANCHEZ: The school seems to be intimating that your son did not prepare himself properly in the days leading up to the course. How do you respond to that charge?
HERBERT: It is completely false. He did -- he did train in his own way. I mean, there was one gentleman that rode a bicycle from the East coast to Utah. No, he didn't do that. But he did hike. He did pack his backpacks with packages of sand so that they were heavier. He was training in his own way. And for them to say that, they are just really just blaming the victim, which I just find reprehensible.
SANCHEZ: They say or seem to be implying that he may have eaten too much. Can you respond to that?
HERBERT: That's bizarre. Again, you know, if you look at their literature, they say you can expect to lose 20 pounds while you are on this course. My son may have gained five or seven pounds just as a buffer for that. Very small amount. And it certainly was not anything, you know, anything of any amount. And keep in mind, he had all of the signs of dehydration, all of the signs.
SANCHEZ: I've looked into your son's past. He really was tough as nails. I mean, this guy's done things that probably 100th of one percent of the population would ever do, mountain climbing, jumping out of the airplanes, he was in the military, was thinking about going to Iraq at one point. Does it surprise that he would succumb to something like this?
HERBERT: Most definitely. When I received that call that night and I was told that, you know, they tried to revive him and they couldn't, I just kept saying my son, Dave Buschow, are you sure you? Are you sure you don't have the wrong person? He's so strong. He's so healthy. And it was my son.
SANCHEZ: What did you do? And how did you react when you were told that he was asking for water just a hundred feet from I suppose what they would refer to as a natural water source and he was denied that water?
HERBERT: Well, when we first heard that he had died, we did not have a clue as to what happened. But within the days that followed, and the newspaper articles saying that he had been complaining of cramping and water, when I found that out, I just walked into my room and closed the door and just curled up and cried. I just could not believe that something like water could be the reason that my son died.
SANCHEZ: Yes, it must be very tough for you. What do you want to come out of this?
HERBERT: Well, they have agreed now to allow their students to carry water, but not because it's something that they've wanted to do. They were forced to do it or they wouldn't be able to use the Forest Service land.
What I think now should happen is that they should have a wilderness medical doctor evaluate their course, especially their impact phase. And whatever they recommend they should follow. They should not take the philosophy of their course as more important than the safety of their students.
SANCHEZ: When was the last time you spoke to the Boulder school? And have they attempted to explain things to you or apologize to you for what happened to your son?
HERBERT: The last time I spoke to Josh Bernstein was the day that he -- night that he called me that my son died. My son Rob spoke to him after the fact. They have never apologized. And they have never accepted responsibility.
SANCHEZ: Well, Pat Herbert, thanks so much for being with us once again tonight.
HERBERT: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: And again, we're really sorry for your loss.
HERBERT: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: We should tell that we have attempted repeatedly now to contact the school to try and get their response to what the police report and the investigation seems to show and some of the changes that they've now made as a result of what U.S. Forestry has requested them to do. So far, our calls have not been answered. You can see more of my reports like this one week nights at 10:00 Eastern, right there next to the man Anderson Cooper on "AC 360."
Coming up, girl snatched off the streets, kept in hiding or killed? A mother's plea to find her daughter. The twist -- they live four miles from Kelsey Smith's house. So now police are saying might there be a link?
And then a boy trapped inside his father's concrete truck. You're not going to believe what rescuers had to cut off to get him out alive. We're going to be back in the CNN NEWSROOM.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LT. ELKIN SIERRA, MIAMI-DATE CO. FIRE DEPT.: That was the only way to free this patient from this carnage, from this twisted metal that's still a truck.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: The only way? Amputating the 17-year-old boy's arm right there on a Florida freeway. This is a horrific accident. The teen and his dad were heading for work in a cement truck, when it suddenly flipped over. 50 firefighters kept trying to do whatever they could to free the boy, but imagine how much that truck weighs that was on top of him.
Finally, they flew in a doctor by helicopter to amputate the boy's arm. Tonight, the teen's listed in stable condition at a Miami hospital.
Now to Connecticut, where home made pornography tapes are the latest twist in one of the more bizarre missing persons cases that we've covered in a while. Here's what we know. A 15-year-old girl found locked in a tiny room inside a West Hartford home. She'd been missing now for about a year.
Detectives say that Adam Gault was a person of interest early in their investigation. Well, tonight, Gault and two others are charged with unlawful restraint, reckless endangerment, and risk of injury to minor. Reporter Steven Goode is covering the story for the Hartford newspaper.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVEN GOODE, HARTFORD COURANT: Authorities, when they searched the house, they were looking for two things. They were going for - they wanted - they were going for DNA evidence from Mr. Gault. And also, they were looking for videotaping equipment, cameras, videotapes.
They seized those. And sources told us that they've determined that there is pornographic images on these tapes of not just one girl, but several. And they're not sure if Danielle is on these tapes at this point, because the quality is very poor, but apparently he was putting them on the Internet.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: And then there's this story.
In Kansas, police have closed the file on one missing teen. But tonight, they're hoping that Kelsey Smith's murder may help them somehow solve the case of another missing teen. This is who we're talking about. 17-yar old Kara Kopetsky. He disappeared from the town of Belton, about five weeks ago. See, that's only a few miles from where Smith's body was found. You remember that story walking outside the Target.
Well, police say they may once again search the wooded area where Smith's body was found this week to see if they can find clues to help them find Kara. Here's Kara's mother tonight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RHONDA BECKFORD, MOTHER: I just want to know. I just want to know where my daughter is. And I want my daughter to know that I love her and I want her to come home. And anybody that knows anything at all, just somebody has to know where my daughter is. Somebody has to know what happened to her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Edwin Hall is charged with kidnapping and murder in Kelsey Smith's death. He has not been charged with anything involving Kara's Kopetsky's disappearance, but the proximity of the two women certainly raises some red flags for authorities. So I asked some of the police officers that are investigating this disappearance. Here is Captain Don Spears.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CAPT. DON SPEARS, BELTON, MISSOURI POLICE: We've been looking into this case for a little over 30 days that our missing person Kara Kopetsky has been gone. We're looking to see if there is any connection between our missing person and that of Kelsey Smith.
SANCHEZ: Well, does the crime fit in any way? Is it similar?
SPEARS: Well, the only similarity's are that there are two young females that had vanished basically. One was abducted that was seen through surveillance tape. We do not have that kind of evidence for our missing persons.
SANCHEZ: Well, we're looking at the suspect right now. And obviously, to be fair, he has not been charged with anything having to do with your particular case, but given what you know about him, do you see any similarities in what he did with what may have happened to Kopetsky, your victim?
SPEARS: Not at this time, other than the two girls being similar. We have had detectives working with the Overland Park police department to see if there are any evidence or any trace evidence that we could find with Mr. Hall that may connect him to our case. But as of this time, there has been none.
SANCHEZ: And we thank the Captain Don Spears for that information.
In Florida, by the way, a gruesome discovery. Eight sets of human remains have been found in a wooded area east of Fort Myers. All were men. And police are saying the skeletons point to one suspect, who's already on death row.
Here's Patrick Flannery from affiliate WBBH.
PATRICK FLANNERY, WBBH: He's been sitting on death row since 2000 for murdering a vagrant in Charlotte County, yet Daniel Conahan has long been suspected of killing five others, all of them transient men in the nude, each allegedly lured into wooded areas by Conahan.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Try to, you know, be careful and not, you know talk to strangers and things like that.
FLANNERY: Flash forward to March of this year, when investigators uncover skeletal remains in Fort Myers, not far from where a drifter accused Conahan of attacking him back in 1994.
CHIEF HILTON DANIELS, FORT MYERS POLICE: We have been trying to identify the remains. And we have used several experts in order to do that.
FLANNERY: Forensics investigators point out the eight skeletons belong to men, aged 18 to 49, who wore no clothing when they died. And dental records show at least one of them was a drifter.
HEATHER WALSH-HANEY, FORENSIC INVESTIGATOR: What is interesting is the completeness of these skeleton remains of these human remains. And that is that we have nearly 90 percent of each individual.
SANCHEZ: Patrick Flannery from the affiliate WBBH. By the way, Conahan continues to deny killing anybody. He's on death row at the Union Correctional Institute. That's in Rayford, Florida.
To New York now, where a high school track star's death is being blamed on too much muscle cream. You know the products. They're what are often used to try and numb the aches and the pains after rigorous exercise. It's got a really strong smell?
Well, tonight, a New York medical examiner says that this cross country runner, 17-year-old Arielle Newman died after her body absorbed too much of this anti-inflammatory found in those creams. Experts say that is rare. Newman was using cream and adhesive pads containing this chemical. She was also using a third product that also contains it.
SANCHEZ: Well, check your refrigerator. Check your freezers. A major food distributor is recalling a ton of ground beef that might be contaminated. Tyson Fresh Meat says E. Coli test came up positive on samples of beef shipped to Wal-mart stores in 12 different states. No reports yet of anybody getting sick. All of the affected packages had a sell by date of June 13th. You can check CNN.com if you want specifics about the areas that might be affected or your state.
President Bush is in Europe tonight, but not everybody there is putting out the welcome mat. Thousands of people standing their ground in the streets as the president sits down with the pope. And then it got really ugly.
Also, storms, sun, or a bit of both? Our Jacqui Jeras is going to be tracking your Sunday forecast straight ahead. Hi, Jacqui!
SANCHEZ: It began somewhat peaceful. It was an anti-George Bush protest in Rome, but then it turned into this. We're told the demonstration got violent when protesters tried walking down a blocked street. They were also told not to wear masks. Some of them did. And they were told not to throw things. They did! So finally police came in, tried to turn them around. That's when all hell broke looks loose.
Some protestors began swinging sticks, throwing bottles at the police officers. While that was happening, President Bush was at the Vatican with Pope Benedict, answering the pope's concerns about Christians living in Muslim majority Iraq. We told the pope that both the U.S. and Iraqi governments are working hard to foster religious tolerance in Iraq.
Pope Benedict wasn't the only one with concerns to vent. An environmental group in Spain went the extra mile to try and drive home their point as well. Under the slogan "as bare as you dare," scantily clad protesters pedaled along, demonstrating the risks they face on the roads and the impact cars have on the environment. And to prove their points, they decided to take off their clothes! That's right! Nude bikers. Also turned out in London, Paris, Mexico City, and elsewhere. You thought we were going to show you some of that, huh?
She's apparently stopped crying now. Instead, we're learning tonight that Paris Hilton has picked up a pen and written a statement to her fans and supporters. It's posted on tmz.com. The statement says and I'll read, "I have already learned a bitter, but important lesson from this experience."
Hilton also says she's advised her attorney now not to appeal the judge's decision as many were expecting she would do. Again, not to appeal the judge's decision to send her back to jail.
The most popular stories is on CNN.com tonight. First, the guy who was once accused of plotting to kidnap David Letterman's son, apparently hatched a plan to escape Montana state prison with another inmate. And it worked. Kelly Frank and the other man are on the lamb tonight. Both were assigned to outdoor work detail.
Rags to riches is queen for a day. For the first time in 102 years, a filly has finished first in the Belmont Stakes. Won by a head. Preakness winner Curlin was favored over Rags to Riches. But it just goes to show it was ladies first today at the races.
Mick Jagger partied like a true rock star with his brother during an impromptu live performance at a London pub. Chris Jagger had been reportedly saying for years that his famous brother Mick would one day join him on stage. Well, Chris played the guitar while Mick belted out "Dead Flower," a track from a Rolling Stones Sticky Fingers album. For more on these and other stories, log to on CNN.com and click on the link for the most popular. There you have it.
Let's go over to Jacqui now. You a Rolling Stones fan, Jacqui?
JACQUI JERAS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: I'm medium on the Rolling Stones. All right, maybe they will be the Mick Jagger brothers like the Bacon brothers?
SANCHEZ: That would work. JERAS: Do a little thing?
SANCHEZ: I don't know.
SANCHEZ: Take it away.
JERAS: Hey, we've had some nasty storms going on across parts of New Mexico all afternoon and evening long. And this line still producing some severe thunderstorms here east of Albuquerque on through the panhandle of Texas, and on into Oklahoma. You can see the yellow box there, indicating there's still a severe thunderstorm. Watch out.
Large hail and damaging winds will be the primary threat but we're also getting some pretty good downpours and also a lot of lightning. You know you can see the live lightning strikes here on our radar picture.
Well, we did have a one tornado to report in New Mexico. And guess what? We got it on video. Look at this picture! Just incredible. Take a look at this. I would say this is what we would call a land spout tornado, which is different than the typical super cell type of tornado that we usually get.
And basically, they're weaker and usually smaller than the typical super cell tornadoes and cause less damage, though they can cause some damage. Our i-reports caught this, too. And we'll show you that coming up in just a little bit.
In the meantime, we also have some very strong thunderstorms pushing across parts of Louisiana. This complex started up here in southern Mississippi, moved through the area, caused a little wind damage from Baton Rouge on over towards Slidell. And now the worst of the storms are making their way offshore.
Brought a nice cool down though. Little bit of respite from all the heat here. Heat advisories in effect all day today and will continue through 7:00 p.m. tomorrow. That includes you in New Orleans. The heat index up to about 100 to 105 degrees this afternoon and tonight and tomorrow. Look at that heat spreading northward.
Minneapolis pushing up to 90 degrees after a nice cooling for today. We'll also see some showers and thunderstorms return and move their way back on up into the north into the Missouri River Valley.
Let's go ahead and take a look at some of those i-reports that we did get. This one is of that land spout tornado. Came in from Karen Shoemaker. She and her husband Don were driving along I-25 south. They're from Bernalillo, New Mexico. She said she thought it was a dust devil. Then she thought it looked like a tornado. And they also got a little bit of hail out of this one.
Take a look at that picture. They were pulling their RV. You can see their RV right there with a tornado in the background. Thanks to Karen and her husband Don for sending us that photo.
Also, check out these pictures. This is a fire that was caused by a lightning strike. Jacob Reagan from Pittsburgh, Kansas caught this on videotape. He said the lightning strike woke him up and blew the windows out of the house next door to him. And the fire was actually several houses away. It stayed contained to that one house, but he says it was about three-quarters destroyed. Rick, some really incredible photos coming in from our i-reporters tonight.
SANCHEZ: I like that bespectacled look looks really good on you, by the way.
JERAS: You like them?
JERAS: You know, my contacts get a little dry after a while.
SANCHEZ: You look really smart.
JERAS: I try.
SANCHEZ: Thanks, Jacqui.
Just ahead, a man who shares his trade with poor people overseas. And he asks for nothing in return. Nothing that is, except for a good smile. He's our CNN hero and we're proud to bring it to you. Stay with us. We'll tell you his story.
SANCHEZ: Using a skill or a trade? To help people in need. To us, that stuff's not charity. That's heroism. All this year, we, here at CNN, are spotlighting people who are doing what they can to try and make the world a better place for all of us. Our hero tonight, a dentist, who's bringing smiles to a far away land. We offer you now Dr. Trey Wilson in his own words.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Introduce yourself.
TREY WILSON, DENTIST: Every single one of us has that capacity to be of service to others. And I just did something about it. I'm Trey Wilson. I live in New York City and I provide free dental care and dental education to Kenyans.
Dental care in Kenya is virtually nonexistent. When I arrived in Kenya, routinely I saw my clinic, four-year-olds with 20 teeth that needed to be extracted. I bring a team of dentists and volunteers who provide dental care in two clinics that we've established in Katali, which is the fifth largest city in Kenya. When we arrive in the morning, there are already four or 500 people assembled ready to be seen. My organization gives patients the opportunity to have their teeth fixed. We provide dental education. And we hand out toothbrushes to people.
There was a woman who waited seven hours to see me because she said, "I like my smile and I won't have anything to smile about if they pull my front tooth." I think that it would be a good idea to try to save that tooth. She was so happy that her beauty, I mean, her beauty really came out. Give me a hug. All right.
My life would have been a Monday through Friday Madison Avenue dentist, getting in my car and driving out to the country and gardening all weekend, but I had a revelation that -- which is just a little bit of effort, I could make a huge impact.
All of us are far more resourceful than we ever think we are. And we have much more to give than we think that we have.
SANCHEZ: Also nominate somebody that you think deserves special recognition for CNN Hero award. All the details are at cnn.com/heroes.
Well, hope you enjoyed hearing from people. In many ways, just like you on some of the big topics like Iraq, immigration, healthcare. Topics really not just for politicians. They're for all of us to discuss. They darned well better be for all our sakes, huh?
I'm Rick Sanchez. Thanks for much for being with us tonight. Goodnight everybody.
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