Return to Transcripts main page


Dharun Ravi Found Guilty; Republican Presidential Candidates Blame President Obama for Gasoline Price Increase; Tornado's Deadly Force; Fallen Soldier, Outraged Family; "Kony 2012" Filmmaker Picked Up By Police

Aired March 16, 2012 - 20:00   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Hey, good evening, everyone. Erin, thank you very much.

We begin with breaking news. Late tonight the American soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians has been identified. Staff sergeant Robert Bales is his name. These were the first pictures we are getting of Sergeant Bales.

We are also learning that right now he is headed to fort Leavenworth in Kansas. Bales is accused of leaving his base in Afghanistan last Sunday, walking off the base, walking to villages and gunning down the victims. Some of them asleep in their beds.

We are going to have more on this story later on in the program tonight, but this is the first indication, certainly the first pictures of who this man is.

First up tonight, though, "Keeping Them Honest." Whether you agree with the verdict or not, justice was served in a New Jersey courtroom where a jury convicted Dharun Ravi from bias intimidation and invasion of privacy in the cyber bullying case we've been following more than a year now. Ravi a former Rutgers University student used a webcam to spy on his gay roommate Tyler Clementi while he was with the man. He tweeted about what he saw. Days later Clementi killed himself. He was just 18 years old.

Ravi now faces up to ten years in prison. "Keeping Them Honest," at time of the arrest, there was no law on the books making cyber bullying a crime. It wasn't until months after Tyler Clementi's suicide the New Jersey passed a cyber bullying law. Prosecutors were able to convict Ravi under a biased intimidation law instead.

We will have more on that in a moment. Only 11 states currently have laws on the books criminalizing cyber bullying. Only 11 states. That is despite the fact that bullying remains a huge problem. According to government statistics kids between eight and 15 say that bullying is a bigger problem for them than racism or pressure to have sex. The toll bullying takes on gay teens and kids is especially high.

Here's what Joe Clementi, Tyler's father said today after the jury read its verdict. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE CLEMENTI, SON WAS CYBER BULLIED BEFORE KILLING HIMSELF: The trial was painful for to us would be for any parent listen to people talk about bad and inappropriate things done to their child. We were here every day, because we wanted to be here for our son and because we believed this trial was important, because it dealt with important issues for our society and for our young people today.


COOPER: I can only imagine how hard it must have been for the Clementi family to sit through the trial. They, of course, are still grieving. If Tyler Clementi was alive, he would be a sophomore returning from campus right about now from the spring break and just another few weeks, he would be studying for spring exams.

Ravi's lawyers tried to convince the jury that he was just an immature college freshman with bad judgment back in the fall of 2010. They didn't buy it. Ravi now faces up to ten years in prison. His lawyers said they will appeal. The trial lasted almost three weeks. The jury deliberated just over two days.

Miguel Marquez looks back.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Guilty or not guilty?


MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A clean sweep for the prosecution. Dharun Ravi guilty on all counts. Ravi never took the stand on his own behalf. Instead his defense used the police interrogation video to prove he meant no harm highlighting the fact he never recorded Clementi nor he put the encounter online.

DHARUN RAVI, CONVICTED: We go to a computer, we turn it on. At the corner of the screen we see - we see someone's back. It was obvious that they were being intimate, and like so we closed it immediately, and I just left like really uncomfortable and guilty that I saw that.

MARQUEZ: Ravi's defense argued he only turned on his camera because he didn't trust Clementi's visitor and was worried about theft.

RAVI: The guy walked in, like the reason I was a little weird out was because he came in and I said, hey, and he didn't acknowledge me. Just sat on the bed. On Tyler's bed, and didn't say anything. So, I left the room. I was kind of getting a like a little creep out and worried about what was happening because I had other valuables in there.

MARQUEZ: But prosecutors paint a very different picture successfully arguing Ravi targeted his roommate because of his sexual orientation setting up his computer to spy on Clementi then telling friends via twitter about what he saw even daring everyone to watch. When Clementi asked to use the room privately a second time.

Perhaps devastating to Ravi's claim that he wasn't anti-gay, his friend and one-time co-defendant Molly Wei who had a deal with prosecutors testified, Ravi was uncomfortable with Clementi's sexuality.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What was the defendant's reaction? How was he acting?

MOLLY WEI, DHARUN RAVI'S FRIEND: Just shocked, and kind of surprised at what he saw, freaking out a little. It doesn't say --

MARQUEZ: As evidence of intimidation, prosecutors hammered the jury with a tweet Ravi sent. Quote, "roommate asked for the room until midnight. I went to Molly's room then turn on my web cam. I saw him making out way dude. Yes."

At the time, Clementi quickly aware of the tweet requested a room change and checked Ravi's twitter feed dozens of times to see if more would follow. Days later, the shy 18-year-old jumped off the George Washington bridge. His last communication, a facebook post, "Jumping off the G.W. bridge. Sorry."

Ravi wasn't charged with the death and his defense said he acted childishly but isn't homophobic, that he pointed to texts messages Ravi sent Clementi the night he took his own life. Writing, "I've known you were gay. And I have no problem with it. In fact, one of my closest friends is gay and he and I have a close relationship. I just suspected you were just shy about it which is why I never broached the topic. I don't want your freshman year to be ruined because of a petty misunderstanding.

We don't know if Tyler Clementi ever saw that text.

Miguel Marquez, CNN, New York.


COOPER: Well, the jurors got the case on Wednesday. They reached their verdict shortly before noon today. Joining me exclusively, two members of that jury, Kashad Leverett and Bruno Ferreira.

Thank you guys so much for being with us. Bruno, are you satisfied by the verdict today?

BRUNO FERREIRA, JUROR IN DHARUN RAVI'S TRIAL: Yes, I'm very satisfied. I mean, it took a, four long, hard weeks, and when we were in the jury room for three days, I think we all pretty much were satisfied.

COOPER: The bias intimidation charge, you say it presented more difficulty than the others did. How so?

FERREIRA: There were just so many different levels. There was three different levels that can you actually see it being biased.


FERREIRA: Then there was the whole thing where he did it one time the first day, and then we pretty much had to figure out whether or not he did it on purpose. We had to really get inside his mind, to see if he actually did it intentionally with purpose of bias towards his roommate.

COOPER: Kashad, do you think it would have been easier or harder if Ravi had actually taken the stand?

KASHAD LEVERETT, JUROR IN DHARUN RAVI'S TRIAL: I think it would have been a little easier because we would have had the state of mind he had on September 19th or during the month of September.

COOPER: Right. Is it hard to -- I mean, just the process of coming to this decision, what was the hardest part?

LEVERETT: I believe the hardest part was actually proving that he was guilt if the certain charge, and actually getting the evidence that would prove him guilty on that charge.

COOPER: Yes. How about for you?

FERREIRA: Same thing. It's -- I know for the first -- the first part when we came across the bias, there was some things that -- there wasn't enough evidence or enough witness statements to actually prove on certain points that he was, in fact, guilty. That's why you have the 24 and the 11 not guilty's and the 24 guilty's because we couldn't really on certain parts we really couldn't establish that as far as being, having a guilty verdict.

COOPER: We've all seen jurors working on television shows and stuff. What was it like in the jury room and how did you guys work together?

FERREIRA: Want to answer that or you want me to answer it?

LEVERETT: Actually, see it as instructed by the judge not to bring anything from the media actually brought a different perspective on it. Because at the same time I'm there, it's live testimony. I see the evidence, and not to hear any other media, what they feed me, it's a way different story, and I thought just being there was actually more helpful to come to the decision, because we all were on the same page, when we got into the room, and now it was time to dissect every charge and see where we stand.

FERREIRA: And the majority of us were all brand up in it jury process.

COOPER: Both had never been on a jury?

FERREIRA: Yes. Both of us had never been. I know it's my first time. I mean, I enjoyed it. It was a lot of information. It's like probably one of the highest thing us can do for your country as far as severing on jury duty.

And then, once we got to know who the original 16 were, we pretty much began to bond on you know when we were downstairs on our breaks. We would, you know, get to know each other a little better and the process was a lot easier. Once we got into the jury room, we knew it was down to business and time to figure out whether or not he was guilty or not.

COOPER: Well, I appreciate your service and I appreciate you guys coming on to talk about it. Thank you so much. Really interesting to hear from you.

Sentencing for Ravi set for May 21st. As we said, he faces up to ten years in prison. He also could face deportation to India where he was born.

Joining me now is CNN legal analyst, former deferral prosecutor, Sunny Hostin.

Sunny, were you surprised by the verdict?

SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: You know I was surprised. And I've been following this case since day one. You know, I actually was in the courtroom when the case first began, and I thought that it was going to be difficult to prove bias intimidation, because as these two jurors just said, the prosecution had to prove what his motivation was. What was in Dharun Ravi's mind, and that is a very difficult thing to do. And, also, you know, Anderson, this is the first time, in my view that bias intimidations, hate crimes, have been prosecuted in this way.

COOPER: Can you explain what biased intimidation is?

HOSTIN: Sure. I mean in New Jersey, what they had to show was that Dharun Ravi intended to intimidate Tyler Clementi by spying on him. He was motivated by his bias, and intended to intimidate him because of his sexual orientation.

They also could have proven it a different way. They could have proven that he intended to intimidate and was biased against M.B., the person that Tyler Clementi was with. And then lastly, which was they did convict on, he intended to - he was biased against Tyler Clementi and Tyler Clementi felt intimidated by him.

And - you know, just by going over it, you see how difficult that really is, because Tyler Clementi wasn't leer to testify. And so, the jury had to look at all the facts and they determined that Tyler Clementi felt intimidated because of his sexual orientation.

So, this is the first time I think that this type of statute has been used in this way. Of course, now New Jersey has this very, very robust cyber bullying law, but that wasn't what he was convicted of.

COOPER: Right.

HOSTIN: He was convicting of a hate crime. And I think it really is a game changer in many respects, because this is a wake-up call to our young people, to anyone that uses social media, quite frankly, because now you when be held accountable for those words, for those hateful words that you use on the Internet.

COOPER: And do you think -- I mean, he could get up to ten years. Do you think he will get that?

HOSTIN: You know, in New Jersey, when you get convicted of a second-degree crime, like bias intimidation, a felony, there's a presumption that you should be sentenced to jail time. Five to ten years. And 99 percent, I'm told, of defendants facing this presumption typically get put in prison.

Now, this judge has asked for a sentencing memorandum from the defense. And if the defense can show that there are more mitigating factors, meaning he shouldn't be put in jail because he doesn't have a criminal record, you know, been an upstanding citizen. If they can prove that there are more mitigating factors that aggravating factors and that in the interests of justice, this judge should give him sort of a non-custodial sentence, then perhaps he won't go to prison.

COOPER: He could have accepted a plea deal, had no jail time.

HOSTIN: Yes, I got to tell you.

COOPER: When he would have no prison time, right?

HOSTIN: It's shocking that he, in retrospect, that he didn't accept that plea deal which you're right. Didn't include prison time, Anderson, and only included 600 hours of community service. I believe it is likely that having seen this judge in action, he will likely spend some time in prison.

COOPER: All right. Sunny Hostin, appreciate your perspective. Thanks very much.

HOSTIN: Thanks.

COOPER: Let me know what you think. We are on facebook. Follow me on twitter @andersoncooper. I'll try to tweets tonight.

Coming up, Newt Gingrich again, today, promised if he's elected president he will bring gas prices down to $2.50. Blamed President Obama for rising prices. But can the president, any president really do much to affect prices at the pump? We "Keeping Them Honest."

Also later, a family's outrage, a picture of an American soldier killed in Iraq that two dating websites allegedly used to advertise their services. They were making money off this photo basically.

What the family is trying to do about it, what the websites are saying, coming up.


COOPER: President Obama spent today attending fund-raisers for his re-election campaign raising more than $5 million. The men who want his job were also on the trail ahead of Tuesday's primary in Illinois. One line of attack picking up considerable steam for the lean Republican candidates is the rising price of gas. They have you believe that bringing down gas prices is as simple as casting a vote for president.

But our question is, can the president, any president, really do much to affect the prices, or is it all just -- well, politics? We are "Keeping Them Honest" tonight. There is no doubt an issue a lot of Americans care about. Gas prices rose again just today to a national average of just over $3.83 a gallon, that's up almost 56 cents since the beginning of the year.

Now, Newt Gingrich has made it his mantra. He says if he's elected president he can bring the price down to $2.50 a gallon.


NEWT GINGRICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm happy to say the Gingrich plan moves you towards $2.50 or less. The Obama plans moves you towards $9 or $10 or more.


COOPER: That was just today. When it comes to the mythical $2.50 of gas, Gingrich isn't just making campaign promise. He's plastering that promise all over the campaign trail. We showed you one poster. A gas pump with a $2.50 price tag has appeared on his campaign logo. It's the first thing you see when you logon to the new dot org gas pump 2.50 and he has mentioned it a few times.


GINGRICH: I've develop add program for American energy. So no future president will ever bow to a Saudi King again, and so every American will look forward to $2.50 a gallon gasoline.

One of my goals this fall is to run as president drilling versus president algae and let people choose between $10 a gallon and $2.50 a gallon. $10 with him. $2.50 with me. You decide the next four years.

Newt equals $2.50 a gallon gasoline.

Newt equals -- $2.50 a gallon gasoline.

$2.50 a gallon.

$2.50 a gallon.


A plan against $2.50.

$2.50 gallon.

$2.50 gallon.

$2.50 gallon.

$2.50 gallon.

$2.50 a gallon.

Newt equals $2.50 a gallon gasoline.


COOPER: So, Gingrich is going so far as to guarantee exact rice. Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, most of all President Obama before it's going on at your local gas stations.


MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is a president who doesn't like oil, coal, natural gas, Nuclear - we are seeing some of the results of that even if you look at gasoline prices today.

RICK SANTORUM (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: When you see that gas pump, when you're pumping gas the next time, and you see that number go from dollars with two columns to that third column, and you see that zero come up, think of zero for O for Obama.


COOPER: Well, the president says we have seen this movie before that it's politics as usual.


BARACK OBAMA PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Every time prices start to go up, especially in an election year, politicians dust off their three-point plans for $2 gas. I guess this year they decide we're going to make it $2.50. I don't know where -- you know, why not $2.40? Why not $2.10?


COOPER: Well, it's true. It's a time-honored tradition. When gas prices are high especially in an election year the president is going to be blamed. And his opponents whether Republicans or Democrats will promise to fix and quickly.

"Keeping Them Honest" though, the price for oil set in the global market, which is vulnerable to recession, to Middle East turmoil, the threatening noises from nations like Iran, and economists who let the energy information administration and work at a CIA analyst put it like this.

Quote, "political rhetoric is all it is. Short of price controls, which were a disaster during the Nixon administration, politics can't do much to change the price of gasoline." And this from a bipartisan policy center -- scholar who worked on energy policy in Washington for more than 20 years. Quote, "obviously, the price ever oil set on a global market in the immediate term there's almost nothing you can do."

So, even if there was a silver bullet to bring down gas price, and quick fix, and magic wand, whatever you call it, no president or presidential candidate has that bag of tricks up his sleeve, or in his bag, I guess.

Still in these times of painful prices at the gas pumps the message seems to be getting through to people even if nothing more than a gimmick a tried and true piece of campaign myth.

In CBS news "New York times" poll last week, 54 percent that they think the president can do something about gas prices.

Joining me with two different perspectives, Fareed Zakaria, host of "FAREED ZAKARIA GPS" and in Phoenix, Stephen Moore, senior economist writer, economic writer for the "Wall Street Journal."

Fareed, is this just rhetoric?

Pure political banter. The world consumes about 80 million barrels of oil a day. The total U.S. increase in production, if you were to do everything that Newt Gingrich fantasizes about, would be less than, you know, half a percent of that. So the chance that it would have any impact on the price of oil, particularly in the short run, is pure fantasy. Not just fantasy but Newt surely knows better.

The truth of the matter is we are in the middle of a great boom in domestic oil production. We are at the highest levels in 30 years. The United States for the first time is actually exporting oil rather than importing oil, and it has made no difference to our prices. In fact, as we can see, oil prices have gone up. Why? Because, a, China is growing. India is growing. All that, all the growth we know about is taking place.

And, secondly, people are worried about a possible war with Iran. Geopolitical concerns. So these are not things that you can easily fix, you know. You're not going to get China to slow down. You are not going to change the fact that there are genuine concerns, and increasing American domestic production is such a marginal issue at this point that it's really totally irresponsible for Newt Gingrich to be saying this.

COOPER: Stephen, you disagree?

STEPHEN MOORE, SENIOR ECONOMICS WRITER, WALL STREET JOURNAL: Well, look, I agree in the short-term, and Fareed is right that it's not much that Barack Obama can be done over next month or something to reduce the high price of gasoline and Fareed is also right that major reason we're seeing the spike right now is because of what's happening in the Middle East. I agree with those two things.

But it's also true, Fareed as you know, that this president has been completely hostile to domestic production of oil and gas. It is true we have a big increase, but that's not because of Barack Obama. He's opposed the drilling, the permitting we could do.

You're right we've seen an increase, but I just got back from North Dakota. What's going on there is a miracle. I mean, we have more oil right now in states like North Dakota, Oklahoma, Colorado, California, than Saudi Arabia has oil. And I think the reason this is a political problem for the president is Americans are connecting the dots. They're seeing the fact that we're not -- when we're not doing things that make so much common sense, like building the keystone pipeline, that we not doing the drilling, or not doing the permitting to exploit our own natural resources, I think the Americans understand. Wait a minute. That hits me in the pump.

ZAKARIA: But as Stephen is pointing out, all this oil is being drilled. In point of fact, whether or not the president is enthusiastic about on nearly what's happening over his grudging objections, the truth of the matter is, we are in the midst ever a huge oil boom and prices are rising.

So, -- and you know, keystone is a total red herring because of course, the keystone oil is going to be excavated, it is going to be produced, it is going to be used. It is going to be used by China or us. It makes not a jar of difference to the price of oil, because that oil will reach the world market.

And so, when we talk about this, yes, maybe hypothetically, if there were a president who would green light every single project that Stephen would like, maybe you'd, as I said, you'd increase production marginally. We have actually increased production substantially and it's not led to any reduction in price. In fact, there are increases in demand and there are geopolitical fears.

COOPER: Stephen, do you believe that Newt Gingrich can bring it to $2.50 a gallon?

MOORE: Yes, I do. I've seen presidents do this when one of the reason this is such a hot button issue, Anderson, is because of the fact that one of the reasons that Jimmy Carter lost the election 1980 was because of very high gasoline prices a result of very high inflation.

ZAKARIA: Let me ask you a question?

MOORE: Yes, hold on. Let me finish my point. The Reagan brought the inflation rate down with (INAUDIBLE) and by the end of the Reagan's first term in office the price of gasoline fell in half. So yes, I've seen it happen.

ZAKARIA: Because the economy went into a recession. Because the economy went into a recession. Oil prices are also collapsed when we had the global financial crisis. But, Stephen, let me ask you this --

MOORE: Wait. By 1984, the economy was booming. We have oil prices half what they were. Look. I'm not disagreeing with you in the short term. What I'm saying is for example, I've been in Washington 20 years, Fareed. We've been debating whether we should drill in Alaska for 20 years. If we'd done those 20 years ago, we'd have the oil right now and I do believe that would affect the world oil price.

ZAKARIA: You know, Stephen that the quantity of oil we're talking about is not going to make a difference. Let me ask you though, you agree the short-term increase is prices is because of geopolitical uncertainty.


ZAKARIA: I would love to hear some Republican candidate say this. In the short term you wanted to bring the price of oil down, here's the way to do it. Promise that under no circumstances you will invade or attack Iran. Say that you will freely accept all Iranian oil and that, in fact, encourage them to increase production. Would that or would that not be the single thing that would bring the price of oil down right now?

MOORE: Well, that's a little bit of a realm of expertise. I'm not expert.

ZAKARIA: But you know it's true.

MOORE: Well, look. I mean, we all want stability in the Middle East and want Iran to -- demilitarize. But my point is, look, because we've had 50 years of turmoil in the Middle East, Fareed, what I don't understand about the president's energy policies, why aren't we doing everything we possibly can to drill for as much oil as we can here in the United States? It is especially important now because the price is so high. If the price of oil goes to $110 a barrel, don't you think that makes sense not just from an economic standpoint from a national security standpoint, Fareed that we drill as much as we can here so we don't have to send so much money abroad. The countries like Venezuela, Iran and Saudi Arabia?

COOPER: I want you answer that, if you want, but also I want to ask you about a special on health care this weekend.

ZAKARIA: Well, I just want to say, I'll say it one more time. We are at a 30-year high, we are exporting oil for the first time. That has not driven the price down. The idea that marginal influences and a few more fills even in Alaska - and by the way, I actually agree with Stephen that we should be doing more in terms of domestic oil production but the idea it would have an effect on the price seems to me quite silly. It could have an effect on energy independence which mostly now comes from Canada so, with an action not importing much oil from the King of Saudi Arabia.

The health guest specialist really, just to an attempt to look around the world, and tell you there are 20 countries in the world that face similar health care problems as we do. Rich countries, they want to provide access at a decent price. Why is it we're the only once almost two to three times as expensive as everybody else? What can we learn from them? Is there something they can learn from us? So, it's really an attempt to benchmark. Companies always do this. Benchmark and ask ourselves, what's going on in the rest of the world? Why do they have health care systems that at the very least are delivering roughly the same kind of outcome if not better outcomes at half the price?

COOPER: This is going to be on Fareed. Appreciate it, thanks very much.

Stephen, thank you so much. Appreciate you being on, Stephen Moore.

The deadly and destructive tornadoes that tore through the Midwest and south uprooted and changed the lives of so many people. We have story of one long married couple videotaped one approaching twister and then got caught up in it.

Also, a new video that is going viral tonight and the filmmaker, who is "Kony 2012" come such a phenomenon, he's now been hospitalized. H basically appeared naked in a public park and in an outburst. You see the video there. He tells me about it ahead.


COOPER: Up close tonight is becoming all too familiar a sight and happened again with destructive force. A powerful tornado touching down, cutting a path of destruction through communities, leveling homes, businesses in its way.

This was a scene last evening in Dexter, Michigan. Look at that. Amazing storm. The massive job of cleaning up is just beginning. Damage is being assessed. There are no reports of deaths or injuries.

Michigan's governor toured Dexter this afternoon to get a firsthand look at destruction. Amazing nobody there was killed. It was a much different situation earlier this month when dozens of people died in a string of twisters across the south and the Midwest.

Henryville, Indiana, as we reported, got hit hard with a massive twister. Now for the first time, we're getting a look at the funnel cloud as it took aim at one couple who did not get out of the way in time. Susan Candiotti tonight has their story.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just kept coming and kept getting bigger and bigger. It was way on the other side and you could see it coming down. I'm recording it now.


SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): From their living room window, Lenora Hunter and her husband, Wayne saw a tornado coming at them in the distance.

(on camera): Both of you grabbed the cam. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We both had our little cameras and doing it. That's as far --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Man, that's a big one, too. It's a huge one.


LENORA HUNTER, WIFE OF WAYNE HUNTER: He did not like storms. He watched them, and he liked seeing them, but I was a storm lover.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): But this twister was for real.

HUNTER: It's coming right toward Henryville. Maybe we should tell them. It's coming here. It's picking up. It's picking stuff up. Look, you can see it rotate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hope it goes to the north of us. It looks like it's heading right towards us.

HUNTER: We could see it lifting stuff up. And coming out of the wall, and the different colors and we could see it -- the yellow, the green, the black, the grays, the blues, all of the different colors.

CANDIOTTI (on camera): At one point on that tape, the excitement in your voice seems to change, the tone changes.

HUNTER: Yes. We knew. We knew we were going to be hit and it wasn't going to be pretty. Maybe we should get away from the window?

CANDIOTTI: When do you decide time to take cover?

HUNTER: You all will think we're crazy. It was like -- right, like, between those things and the road. It was so close.

HUNTER: Looking at it picking stuff up. We need to close this window. I'm sorry. I'm going to have to close the window. I've got to close the door.

CANDIOTTI: And then the tape just cuts off.

HUNTER: Yes. It was time. It was here. We got -- we hunkered down, put the blanket over us and we just hugged. We just -- you know -- and he was -- his head and body was up against me here. We had our arms around each other. He said, I love you and I said I love you, too.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): The last thing she remembered was her ears popping. Then she blacked out. The twister threw the couple outside their home. Neighbors came looking and heard a noise.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, it sounded like a baby crying, is what I thought, which Mike said it sound like a cat meowing, and that's when I hollered, Mike, I said, there's somebody in there.

We got to go over there. So we ran in the house and flipped the wall off over and got her out. She instantly started saying, my husband, my husband. Well, right next to her, we looked and we could see his feet underneath the refrigerator.

HUNTER: And I knew. You know, I just knew when he was laying there like that, that -- he didn't make it.

CANDIOTTI: Amazingly, Lenora Hunter badly bruised survived. She lost her beloved husband of 41 years and virtually everything she owns. But has her family keeping her strong, and she has the videos of bittersweet memento.

HUNTER: I have never seen one. I finally get to see one. Maybe the last one I see.


CANDIOTTI (on camera): When you think back and you remember saying, I hope it's not the last. It turns out --

HUNTER: It was. It was for Wayne. So it was for him and he never liked them anyway.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): She will rebuild right here where the couple retired and where she says she has to be.

HUNTER: This is going to be my home.

CANDIOTTI: This is where you and Wayne wanted to be?

HUNTER: Right. This is our home and it will be my home forever.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): Lenora Hunter, rebuilding a home and her life after so much loss. Susan Candiotti, CNN, Henryville, Indiana.


COOPER: So sad.

Coming up, a soldier from Texas killed in Iraq. His family says she has been dead for years and suddenly his picture has started popping up in ads for online dating services, of all things. We're going to hear from the family who tracked down those web sites.

Later, new violence in Syria as U.N. envoy, Kofi Annan, says he is doing the best to find a peaceful solution to make it easier for humanitarian aid to reach the people who so desperately need it.


COOPER: Digging deeper tonight for the parents of one fallen American soldier. It's a story that adds outrage and insult to the terrible pain of losing their son who was killed in Iraq.

Their son had been dead for years when said they found out that a picture of him in uniform was being used to advertise dating web sites under the headline "Military Man Searching For Love."

Martin Savidge tracked down the web sites to try to find out how this could have happened.


MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Last year, when Army Second Lieutenant Peter Burks appeared on a dating web site advertising for women, his fiancee and his family couldn't believe it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was just flabbergasted.

SAVIDGE (on camera): The family and the fiancee new the ad couldn't be true because Peter Burks was here killed in Iraq in November, 2007.

(voice-over): That was four years ago, but as Alan Burks showed me mementos of his son's military life, you could still feel a father's pain. It doesn't stop there.

Peter was engaged to Missy. A lifetime of happiness together seemed just around the corner. Alan was on the phone with his future daughter-in-law the day she came she home soldiers at her door.

ALAN BURKS, FATHER OF ARMY SECOND LIEUTENANT PETER BURKS: She had just picked up her wedding dress. They were there on the front door when she got home. She saw them there, and I'll never get that scream out of my head. No! No! No!

SAVIDGE: Peter had been killed by a roadside bomb.

(on camera): When was this picture taken?

(voice-over): The Burks' family cherishes this last photograph taken just before he was killed. They say it embodies every great trade about their hero son who they would never see again -- only they did see him again.

Last December, Alan Burks got an e-mail from one of Peter's friends who uses online dating sites. She sent him a screen graph of an advertisement. There was the beloved photo of peter encouraging women to date U.S. soldiers.

BURKS: It's just very, very sickening.

SAVIDGE: Alan says the ad appeared on at least two web sites, and He says Peter never used those sites and suspects the image was taken from a charity web site the family set up in Peter's honor. So they are suing.

ROGGE DUNN, FAMILY ATTORNEY: This is not some teenager who posted a friend's picture without permission. These are large companies that obviously took this picture and intentionally for commercial gain used it.

SAVIDGE: Just who would stoop to advertising using a dead soldier's picture? We contacted both companies. In an e-mail, blamed the ad on a third party advertiser claiming, we had no control over, or knowledge of the content of ads run by third parties via our site.

They went on to say, the ad has been blocked from our network. In their statement, denied they were behind the ad saying never created, placed or used the photos of Lieutenant Burks.

The company also said management's of would never use the photo of a fallen soldier to promote our business, but we wanted to talk to someone in person. And it wasn't easy.

(on camera): This is a business address for If you look inside, you can see on the wall there is a slogan, live, love, learn. But the place is deserted, and it looks like it's been that way for a long time.

(voice-over): If we couldn't find the company we went looking for's top guys, the founder and the company's president. We went from one multimillion dollar mansion to the next --

(on camera): Seems I missed him by six months.

(voice-over): To the next and it was the last big house where founder Herb Best let us in. He was perfectly willing to talk, only no cameras.

(on camera): So I just came from talking to Mr. Best. Unfortunately, he wouldn't go on camera. He did say though that his web site is responsible for the content that appears.

He also said if the photograph did appear in his web site, he has no idea how that could have happened and lastly, he points out that if the photo was there, all he can really say is that they're very sorry.

(voice-over): But sorry doesn't cut it for a dad, a fiancee and a family who has seen old wounds ripped open by someone's quest for more money.

BURKS: This is someone trying to make a buck off of the United States military personnel. Using that uniform as an affront to me, it will be an affront to my son.


COOPER: Martin Savidge joins us now. I can understand why this family is just outraged by this and upset it and hurt by it. What are they hoping to achieve with the lawsuit?

SAVIDGE: Well, the first thing, Anderson, is they want that photo stopped. They want to make sure that nobody uses it. That it never gets used in that way ever again so that's first and foremost.

They also say, you know what, all of this could have been avoided if they simply could have spoken to someone at either one ever those web sites got some answers. Such as where did you get the photo? Who actually put the ad up?

Were you responsibilities for it? But they said that every time they tried to get the answers they were stonewalled. They didn't get the answers they needed so this was the action they took. They filed a lawsuit.

COOPER: And for anybody using images to make profit, it's just unbelievable. They've set up a web site in memory of their son.

SAVIDGE: Right, they did. They set up -- it's called Basically, what it does is they collect small amounts of money and buy small things like toiletries and snacks, which to us in America doesn't seem like much. But when you send them overseas to a service member serving far away from home, it means a great deal, and they know it.

COOPER: We'll put a link to that up on our web site as well. Martin, appreciate it. Thanks very much.

The man behind the viral video, "Kony 2012," has been detained by police, hospitalized after reportedly acting bizarrely naked in the streets of San Diego. The video there obtained by TMZ. Blown up on internet, you can imagine. Try to figure out what is going on there. We'll be right back.


COOPER: Unfortunate and pretty unbelievable turn of events for the director of the "Kony 2012" video, the Ugandan warlord documentary that went viral.

Tonight, it's a new completely different kind of video that's getting all the attention. TMZ says this is "Kony 2012" director, Jason Russell naked, screaming, pounding his fists on the ground in the streets of San Diego.

Police in San Diego said they got several 911 calls about the incident. Miguel Marquez has been looking into this bizarre turn of events. What do we know about this?

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it is bizarre. At 11:28 yesterday, Thursday morning those calls started coming in. People on the streets in San Diego saying that this man was running through the streets, some of them saying in his underwear.

One caller did say that he was naked and masturbating at one point although police say that they never witnessed that when they showed up on scene just about 10 minutes later. They realized quickly that this guy was acting irrationally and didn't arrest him, but took him to a hospital.

COOPER: And the organization, "Invisible Children" has put out a some sort of a statement. What did they say?

MARQUEZ: Ben Kesey, the CEO of "Invisible Children" has a much different take on this saying that Jason Russell suffered exhaustion, dehydration and malnutrition. He is now receiving medical care and is focused on getting better. The past two weeks have been taken a severe emotional toll on all of us. Jason specially and that toll manifested itself in an unfortunate incident yesterday. That's about all their saying about it.

COOPER: Exhaustion, malnutrition --

MARQUEZ: Malnutrition and dehydration. It's not very clear what exactly happened. He was clearly under a lot of pressure. There were so much focus on -- "Invisible Children."

COOPER: Of course, with any kind of attention, questions about the fundraising, how they spent the money, the people that back it are --

MARQUEZ: By all accounts, this was guy who traveled widely, who was comfortable in the world. Had taken risks that -- it is shocking that it would come to this.

COOPER: Yes. We'll see what happens. I hope he gets better. Thanks very much. Appreciate it, Miguel Marquez.

"The Ridiculist" still ahead, but first Susan Hendricks has a "360 Bulletin" -- Susan.

SUSAN HENDRICKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, this special joint envoy for the U.N. and the Arab League briefed the Security Council today on the Syrian crisis.

Kofi Annan says he is working to find a peaceful solution and to secure unimpeded access for humanitarian aid. The violence continued today with shelling in several cities including Homs.

Even though Staff Sergeant Robert Bales is identified as the soldier accused of murdering 16 Afghan civilians, you see him here, President Hamid Karzai today expressed skepticism that justice will be served.

And finally, thousands of people lining up to be among the first to get their hands on Apple's new iPad. Yes, the new one's out. It's a super high resolution screen along with a faster processor and internet connections -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right, Susan, thanks very much.

Coming up, tired of having to choose between pizza and vasectomies? Yes, I thought you were. Well, it's your lucky night. "The Ridiculist" is next. We'll explain.


COOPER: Time for "The Ridiculist." Tonight, we're adding the pizza and vasectomy combo. That's right, the pizza and the vasectomy combo. Allow me to explain please.

A Cape Cod, Massachusetts urology clinic is offering a new special on vasectomies just in time for March Madness. Yes, indeed, go in for a procedure now and get a free large pizza.

Your drive home from work just got a whole lot easier because you no longer have to make two pesky stops for dinner and male sterilization. Don't just take my word for it.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Guys, want to watch the college basketball tournament guilt free? Schedule your vasectomy with Urology Associates (inaudible) in time for the college basketball tournament and then camp out on the couch for uninterrupted basketball.

We'll even throw in a free pizza for the tournament. You've been thinking about vasectomy anyway. Now's the time to get done. Call Urology Associate at Cape Cod right now or schedule your consultation online at and enjoy the games. Work it.


COOPER: I love how at the very end the jingle you hear a lady go "Work It." I hate to break it to you, man, but all your fellow will be working for the next few days is an ice pack.

By the way, don't you love how the announcer says you know you've been thinking about vasectomy anyway, actually no, I haven't. Pizza, yes. A vasectomy, not so much.

In fact, the only thing I think about less than getting a vasectomy is watching the basketball tournament, that's with the one with the touchdowns, right?

Anyway, look, I know what you're thinking the ad has to be some sort of a spoof. That's what I thought. It's real and lucky for your reporter for the "Cape Cod Times." Cape Cod went to the clinic and interviewed some employees in the hopes of snipping the story in the bud.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right now for vasectomies in sandwich location, we're offering a free pizza for those gentlemen who like to get a vasectomy this month.


COOPER: Did he say the name of the town is sandwich? I mean, pizza, sandwich -- it's not a urology clinic. It's a deli. Let me try that in my Larry King voice. It's not a urology clinic. It's a deli. Here's the thing.

We all know pizza is (inaudible). Some pizza is great. Some of it looks like debris that fell out of Wolf Blitzer's mustache. Luckily we have some insight from one of the doctors as to how this complimentary pizza will be prepared?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Make two tiny punctures in the scrotum.


COOPER: That doesn't sound right. I'm sure they at least have a plan for what to do if the cheese stretches?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We tie the ends off and cauterize them, separate them.


COOPER: All right, I'll be honest. I'm not even sure we're talking about pizza anymore. I know what you're all thinking. You're all wondering it's question every man asks himself at night.

What kind of toppings will be on the free pizza I get with my vasectomy? The reported for Cape Cod tacked that question on to the end of his report. Listen carefully as the credits roll.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You get toppings on that pizza?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It does actually come with one topping.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's not so bad at all. Sign me up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. Maybe you can put some meatballs on it.


COOPER: Meatballs. You were thinking it. I'm sure there's a pepperoni joke in there as well. Listen, we're running late and we need to cut this off. That does it for us. We'll see you again at 10:00 p.m. Eastern. Thanks for watching. "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT" starts now.