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CNN NEWSROOM

Amanda Knox's Fate; Tiger Woods Back on Top; Interview With Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper

Aired March 25, 2013 - 15:00   ET

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


(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Questions of a conspiracy by a white supremacist gang in the murder of a prison chief.

I'm Brooke Baldwin. The news is now.

(voice-over): "The Amazing Race" apologizes to veterans over a prop.

After two skydivers are killed, one parachute expert shows me what went wrong.

Plus, Amanda Knox learns her fate again.

And Tiger's back on top.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BALDWIN: Top of the hour. I'm Brooke Baldwin.

Police in Colorado did not take any chances. They dropped a security blanket over a service to honor their slain prison chief amid worries that a prison gang had ordered hits on state officials. Tom Clements, you see him here, he was the prison chief. He was gunned down Tuesday, shot dead at his own home, with his wife right there. She spoke at this memorial, just a short time ago.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LISA CLEMENTS, WIDOW OF SLAIN PRISON CHIEF: Last Tuesday night, Tom and I were watching TV and our doorbell rang. And my life was forever changed.

But I want to start a little earlier and talk about when our story really started. I was 19 years old, and I fell in love with a guy who sat on the front row of my juvenile delinquency class.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: And here again is the suspect, career criminal Evan Ebel, allegedly a white supremacist gang member. He was paroled from Clements' prison system just back in January. Ebel, himself, was gunned down Thursday in Texas after a high-speed 30-mile shoot-out.

He is also suspected in at least one other fatal shooting since his release on parole in January.

And with me now from just outside of that memorial is Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper.

Governor, thank you for being with me. I know this is incredibly emotional for you, a difficult time. I'm sorry for your loss. I want to begin with Tom Clements. Do you think that he was a target of this white supremacist prison gang? Do you fear that you, other state officials in Colorado could be targets as well?

GOV. JOHN HICKENLOOPER (D), COLORADO: Well, obviously, we're going to take all the security measures we can, but in the end, you know, I still -- you know, maybe it is the opposite. I think it is an individual unique situation.

And, you know, Tom Clements was a remarkable person. He oversaw one of the coldest, darkest of worlds with the warmest and, you know, and most tender of hearts. For this happen to him is incomprehensible, but I don't think it means it is a part of a larger conspiracy.

BALDWIN: You don't. So, at this difficult time, you know, I know people in Colorado perhaps are fearful as there is increased security for you, for other officials. You are not fearful that there is some mass conspiracy; you believe that this was targeted?

HICKENLOOPER: No, I think we're -- I think this is one individual did this. Obviously we're going to continue gathering information and we're going to look at every possibility and we're going to maintain a heightened sense of security as we do those investigations.

I mean, at this point, we're still so devastated by -- by losing Tom, that it is -- you know, it is hard to worry about ourselves.

BALDWIN: Sure.

Governor, what about the suspect here, Mr. Ebel? I know that you knew his family, you know his family, you have known him from a very young age. And I have read that you knew early on he was troubled. Can you tell me more about this man?

HICKENLOOPER: His dad was one of my first friends in Colorado. I have known him over 30 years, one of the nicest, most honorable and generous people I have ever known.

He and Tom Clements are in so many ways so much alike, and the irony of this is incredible.

BALDWIN: How so?

HICKENLOOPER: Well, the sense that Evan Ebel, who really was from the early age just had an anger and a cruelty. I mean, he was -- he just had a bad streak and they tried everything, I mean, again and again, from an early, early age, with no great success.

But he got put into administrative segregation, all right, solitary confinement over six years ago. And so, I mean, he was judged to be too great a risk to the prison community and to that environment. And one of the things Tom fought for was we have too many people in solitary confinement with mental disorders like Evan Ebel.

And we release them. We won't release them in prison. We release them right into the general public. And this is one of the -- as I call it, the quiet crusade that Tom Clements really believed in, that we have to do a better job of identifying and dealing with mental illness with inmates, and putting so many people into solitary confinement and then releasing them into the general public is a recipe for disaster.

BALDWIN: And as you talk about Tom Clements, as we mentioned, you were part of this ceremony, this memorial there as you stand in Colorado Springs.

We played some sound earlier from his wife, talking about sort of when they first met, I think, in some juvenile class many years ago.

What was the most emotional part of this memorial?

HICKENLOOPER: Well, I thought it was -- Lisa is such an amazing woman. And they were a beautiful match together and worked very well together.

And hearing her tell some of these stories, at age 19, he was in the front row of the juvenile delinquency class. She was in the back, and he was in the front. He's the extrovert. She's the introvert. And then how they built this life together, their two incredible daughters, it is -- it's a tragedy beyond any words.

BALDWIN: Mr. -- Governor Hickenlooper, I thank you so much for joining me again. I'm sorry for your loss and we will follow this investigation out of your state of Colorado. Appreciate it.

HICKENLOOPER: You got it. Thank you, Brooke.

BALDWIN: We want to take you now to Brunswick, Georgia. A jailhouse jumpsuit, shackles, a murder rap for a teenager still short of his 16th birthday. This is a kid. We're not showing you his face, we're not telling you his name because he's all of 15 years of age.

He's one of two teenagers accused in this horrendous crime, the shooting death of a baby being strolled by his mother on Thursday in broad daylight here. The second suspect is 17. He appeared before the judge a little later. Neither was asked to plea. It is still unclear whether this younger suspect, the one who is 15, is being charged as a juvenile or as an adult.

Sherry West, the mother of the baby killed, will join "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT" 9:00 p.m. Eastern here on CNN.

Today, the nation recognizes people who passed the test of human spirit with flying colors, citizen heroes. Take a look at these four Americans, because they're not military. They're not police. They're not trained rescuers. They are regular folks who often risked their own lives, made a call to do the right thing at the moment where it mattered the most.

Today, they received the national award in the last hour. It's called the Citizen Service Before Self Honors. Took place, of all places here, the beautiful Arlington National Cemetery.

And CNN's Chris Lawrence is here to explain to me what exactly these people did that was so extraordinary -- Chris.

CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Wow, Brooke.

Well, they're so remarkable because they actually did what we all like to imagine ourselves doing in that same situation. You know, when we imagine seeing somebody who is in need or somebody in danger, we all like to think that we would put them first and really be heroic.

Well, these four stepped up when those chips were down.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LAWRENCE (voice-over): Hurricane Isaac was hammering Louisiana. Levees were exposed to a massive storm surge and officials had to call off rescue teams.

In the town of Braithwaite, a couple drowned in their home and other families were trapped and helpless.

JESSE SHAFFER III, CITIZEN HERO HONOREE: I called somebody I knew that knew these people and they were still in the home. And the water was coming up very, very fast.

LAWRENCE: Jesse Shaffer and his son could have run or saved stuff from their own home. They didn't.

JESSE SHAFFER IV, CITIZEN HERO HONOREE: We had two boats at that time.

LAWRENCE: Jesse and his son went into the heart of the flood, house by house, family by family, for 15 hours. They saved more than 120 people, including kids clinging to the roof of a trailer, just minutes before floodwater engulfed that home.

That sense of selflessness broaden the Shaffers and two others to Washington to receive the Citizens Service Before Self Honors.

Marcos Ugarte is only a teenager. But when his young neighbor was trapped in a burning home, Marcos climbed a ladder, pushed through a window and rescued him. Monsignor Joe Carroll opened a transitional housing program in California providing food, job training and health care for 30 years.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LAWRENCE: Wow.

And who better to give these four an award than living Medal of Honor -- people who have been awarded the Medal of Honor? It's the highest award in the military, and about 20 living Medal of Honor awardees are in Arlington right now, and what they did was they selected these four from a group of finalists, about 20 to 25 finalists, and now the Medal of Honor winners who are normally on the receiving end of all of the accolades, they're the ones who are going to be presenting these awards to these four civilians -- Brooke.

BALDWIN: How special. I remember talking to the younger Shaffer son back in Louisiana when he was, you know, saving people from the floodwaters, giving up his own seat on the boat to rescue people, like we said, just ordinary folks doing amazing things. Chris Lawrence, thank you.

LAWRENCE: Yes.

BALDWIN: Apple may be getting closer to knowing your every turn, your every turn literally. The tech giant has bought out a startup called WiFiSlam. It specializes in indoor GPS, indoor meaning it is a mapping system that can figure out exactly where you are inside a building right down to what floor you are on, what aisle you're in, in a grocery store.

Go to tech guy. Samuel Burke joins me now.

I don't know how I feel about this, Samuel Burke.

Explain this to me.

SAMUEL BURKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Look, if Apple uses this technology from this company to help map that would be something brand-new for them, but it would nothing new for Google Maps. Let me show you an example of an app that Google launched last year that map indoors inside airports if you're trying to find that gate where your airplane is or even inside shopping malls they have been mapping, so if you're trying to find an ATM.

But this technology from this new company that Apple bought says it can plot where you are using three Wi-Fi spots with up to eight feet of accuracy. Imagine that. So clearly Apple could use this technology to compete not just with Google but also the many other companies out there that think tracking and mapping inside is the next big thing on our smartphone.

BALDWIN: But there have been issues with tracking and mapping, a la Apple. I imagine some people might find this idea a little skeevy.

BURKE: And remember that big disaster with Apple Maps just last year. Heads flew at Apple. People were driving into the wrong parts of town and even Apple had to apologize for that technology, so there are plenty of privacy concerns here with these type of applications, as well people saying I have seen apps that can plot everywhere I have been in the streets and I don't know if I want them keeping track of al that.

But just imagine if they're keeping track of every move inside an office building, what offices you're going to. But maybe it could help if a child were lost. This could help locate a missing child, so all types of benefits and risks out there, Brooke.

BALDWIN: Pros and cons. Pros and cons. Samuel Burke, thank you so much.

You know her name, she was convicted of murder, she was acquitted. Now Italian prosecutors here want round three. You know this face, Amanda Knox. She was facing murder charges in Italy, became basically a tabloid sensation. Very soon Italy's supreme court could decide if she can be tried for murder all over again. "On the Case" is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: She may have been acquitted, but Amanda Knox's guilt is still in question and today an Italian court heard prosecutors ask to retry the Washington state woman for that 2007 murder of her British roommate.

A decision from Italy could come at any time. Of course, you have the families of the victim here, Meredith Kercher. They believe she should face a court again. Knox was first convicted, then acquitted upon appeal. Her book about this whole ordeal is just about to come out.

Here is Knox's attorney on CNN earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TED SIMON, ATTORNEY FOR AMANDA KNOX: Amanda, her parents and her extended family have exhibited unparalleled patience, dignity, courage, resilience, fortitude throughout this nightmarish, horrific prosecution. So they're doing as well as anyone could be expected. And, of course, everyone is waiting.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: "On the Case" with me now is attorney and evening HLN's "Evening Express" anchor Ryan Smith. And CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin.

Sunny Hostin, let me begin with you here because you think of a retrial, which, first of all, as I was talking with Ryan in the commercial break, you can't do this here in the U.S. Once you have a conviction, it is done, right? Am I correct?

SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: You're right. And that's what is so fascinating about this case, and I think that's why we're all talking about it. It is not like the prosecution has anything new.

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: There is nothing new.

(CROSSTALK)

HOSTIN: There is nothing new. They just think she is a guilty person, but it already has been determined by an appellate court, Brooke, that her acquittal was -- her conviction, rather, was overturned. So this is something that would never happen in the United States because we have a double jeopardy clause. Once it is set and done, it is set and done here.

And I think really the issue is, my goodness, what if they do reverse their decision? Does Amanda Knox go back to Italy? Oh, my goodness. That's what everybody is talking about.

BALDWIN: That's what I want to ask Ryan Smith because the thought is, OK, what if they determine, yes, we want to retry her in Italy. They can. Who puts her -- because if I'm Amanda Knox, I'm not getting on a plane. I'm staying -- steer clear of Italy. How does that happen?

RYAN SMITH, HLN ANCHOR: That's the big point there. The U.S. and Italy have a bilateral extradition treaty, which means there is a possibility for that. So if in fact they said, OK, you know what you're going to trial again, Italy would apply to the U.S. and say, hey, we need to extradite.

Would the U.S. go for that? A lot of that is determined on whether or not there is credible evidence for the conviction and there was no conviction here. At least that's been overturned. So I don't know what you do there. The other thing is, she would have to -- I don't know if you can force her to get on a plane.

BALDWIN: Could someone in the U.S. put her on a plane, even against her own will? Is that even -- that's not even possible.

SMITH: Everything is always remote possibility, but I would see that as a long shot, because not only would they have trouble meeting the criteria for extradition, but not only that. I mean, she could simply elect not to go back. And we have seen this in other cases before.

Certain people have -- certain countries have said, you got to come back and they just don't go back. I think that's what you will see here. I doubt she will get on a plane and go back to Italy.

BALDWIN: Sunny Hostin, what is the takeaway" here, other than don't go to Italy for Amanda Knox?

HOSTIN: Yes. When we were covering this case before, Brooke, I remember you and I would always say, don't forget when you leave the United States, you're not always protected by the laws of the United States.

But I think the takeaway here really is the United States is not going to extradite her, even though they do have this agreement. That is because here we have the double jeopardy clause. There they don't. You see that kind of stance taken by countries, let's say, that won't extradite people to the United States, if they don't believe in the death penalty. And it's a death penalty case.

And I just suspect that Amanda Knox is going to be able to go forward with her life, but the bottom line is, can you imagine, she was in prison for four years, she thought this was all behind her and it reared its ugly head again. BALDWIN: Here she has this book coming out, you know, fortuitous or not, talk about the timing. Sunny Hostin and Ryan Smith, thank you guys very much.

An adrenaline rush with a tragic ending, two skydivers, one of them the instructor, found dead after jumping out of a plane. We will talk live to the skydiver in this video. Remember this story from recently? He's one of the few who knows the helpless feeling of a freefall without a working parachute. He's Craig Stapleton. He will walk me through how parachutes work or don't next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: Near Tampa, Florida, investigators are trying to figure out what went wrong, why two skydivers died in a jump over the weekend. One was the 40-year-old instructor, and the other was a 25-year-old student who had skydived multiple times before. Their bodies were found in a wooded area after four hours of searching.

The manager of the skydiving company said all of their equipment appeared to be in good shape. The reserve chutes deployed automatically as intended. And just two weeks ago, a very lucky skydiver survived this fall. Here he was. This is California. Both of his parachutes were fouled up. He is Craig Stapleton, and he was banged up a little bit after landing next to a vineyard, but otherwise OK.

He's joining us now from Sacramento.

Mr. Stapleton, welcome. How are you?

CRAIG STAPLETON, SKYDIVER: I'm a little sore, but I'm glad to be here.

BALDWIN: I'm glad you're here too. I want to just let everyone know I have Chad Myers sitting here next to me. He's our weather guy. I wanted him to be involved in this segment here as well.

Let me ask you this. You brought along your parachuter, this backpack. Full transparency, I have never jumped out of a plane. This is new for me. Walk me through what went wrong for you.

Stapleton: What went wrong for me, we opened our parachutes out the door of the aircraft, and flew them together in a stacking formation so the parachutes were touching each other.

Then we passed a lanyard between the two parachutes that had a flag on it. And we would pull that two stack apart and fly the flag straight at the ground with our parachutes flying down. When we did that, we created too much tension. I went up flipping through my harness, it fouled the system that allows the cutaway -- the parachute to be cut away.

And so eventually it got to the point where I was low enough with a malfunctioning parachute, I had actually to fire my reserve into the malfunctioning parachute and hope it cleared. It somewhat did. BALDWIN: Somewhat did. We see you falling. At least some drag was created. You fall on dirt, from what I can tell, inches away from some metal hooks. You're A-OK.

But when you hear about this jump over the weekend, especially involving an instructor, that went horribly wrong, what is your first thought?

Stapleton: Right. My first thought is it is horrible for the people that are close to those people, the families and the friends nearby, the people that travel with them, and have come from Iceland. It is going to be hard for them as well. They have lost some good friends.

BALDWIN: Lost some good friends.

Chad, have you ever done this?

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: No.

But, Craig, I'm the one who called you last week, when you landed in dirt. I'm the one who actually you talked to. But this is a completely different situation here. There was a malfunction of the automatic activation device -- there must have been -- because it didn't deploy that reserve shoot automatically soon enough. The reserve shoot was open and out, but not open and catching air. What could have caused something like that?

BALDWIN: And as you explain, can you show us what that is on your backpack?

Stapleton: Yes. Right.

This is the automatic activation device here. It's a small computer that measures your speed and altitude. Many things can interfere with the reading of this. If you're inverted, if your head down, if you're not in a belly-to-earth position, this may not read correctly. So the -- it can be fooled by body position.

Also, if a student, a low-timer has not got a lot of jumps, they can become panicky at pull altitude and turn upside down, and the instructor may be trying to right them and both of them focused on getting to the right position and they don't focus on getting a parachute open.

BALDWIN: OK.

Stapleton: And a lot of times the instructors are told at a certain altitude, you have to let the student go and let the student work through the problem.

BALDWIN: OK. Craig, just quickly, I'm just curious, are you going to jump again?

Stapleton: Mm-hmm. Absolutely. This Friday, I have a meet to compete in.

BALDWIN: OK. Craig Stapleton, good luck. I appreciate it.

Chad, thank you very much.

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: Coming up next, news on everyone and everything, including CBS apologizing for a segment on one of its most popular shows.

Also, Tiger Woods doing something he hasn't done in almost 30 months.

Plus, the IRS spends your tax money on a "Star Trek"-themed training video.

And two things that you might not pair together, folks, Bill Gates and condoms. The power block is next.

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