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CNN NEWSROOM

Suspected Serial Killer Charged; Nightmare At Six; Meeting Follows Trayvon Martin Rallies; Birth Details Posted At Buckingham Palace

Aired July 22, 2013 - 13:00   ET

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


SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: A woman falls to her death on a roller coaster ride at Six Flags in Texas. Could loose regulations be to blame?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She goes up like this and then when it drops to come down, that's when it released and she just tumbled.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MALVEAUX: In Cleveland, Ohio, the bodies of three women are found wrapped in plastic. A man is now behind bars but police say there could be more victims.

And royal baby on its way. We're live from outside the London hospital where the Duchess Kathryn now in labor.

This is CNN NEWSROOM, and I'm Suzanne Malveaux.

Just over an hour ago, this is in East Cleveland, Ohio. This is a courtroom. Police filed aggravated murder and kidnapping charges against a man that they say killed three women and wrapped their bodies in plastic. 35-year-old Michael Madison, he is being held on a $1 million bond. Now, so far, police have identified one of the bodies found over the weekend. They say it's 38-year-old Angela Deskins. The medical examiner talked about those identification methods.

And Anna Coren, she's joining us live from Cleveland. First of all, I understand that perhaps police are searching for additional victims. Why do they think that there are other people who might have been killed?

ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Suzanne, the reason why police think there could be more bodies is because Michael Madison has elaborated in his interview that he was influenced and idolized Anthony Sowell. Anthony Sowell is a serial killer who was convicted in 2011 of killing 11 African-American women here in Cleveland. He was convicted and is currently on death row. So, in Michael Madison's interviews with police, he has basically said he has looked up to Anthony Sowell.

And, you know, Suzanne, some of the people that we have spoken to here in East Cleveland said that they knew the darker side of Madison and that he did at times indicate that he wanted to Sowell certain women. So, that is why police are so concerned. The other reason, Suzanne, is that there are a lot of women who are missing here in East Cleveland. They think more than, you know, a half a dozen at least in the last two years, if not more. And just to give you an example, there were families and residents who came out to us yesterday and gave us flyers, you know, basically trying to raise awareness of these missing women. So, they are trying to find out whether or not, you know, their loved ones are among the dead -- Suzanne.

MALVEAUX: And, Anna, do we suspect that there is a certain type of person that he would allegedly target?

COREN: Look, we don't know at this stage. Details are quite sketchy. You mentioned the first victim, the only victim that has been identified of those three bodies being Angela Deskins, a 38-year-old African-American. That is all we know is her name and age. But we're trying to find out more details. We don't know, you know, where they worked, anymore details like that. We know that with Anthony Sowell, he preyed on prostitutes. He preyed on women who were down and out. We don't know if Michael Madison did the same.

MALVEAUX: And I understand that we have some sound from the medical examiner's office. I want us to listen to that as it comes in.

THOMAS GILSON, DEPUTY CHIEF MEDICAL EXAMINER, CONNECTICUT: Currently, the identification efforts are very actively under investigation. As they mentioned, the individual was identified, was done with fingerprints. We are also awaiting fingerprints from a larger database to possibly obtain that identity. We're also working on DNA profiles for the decedents as well as dental charting for the decedents which may also be able to let us get a positive identification.

MALVEAUX: So, it sounds like they are definitely working to try to identify some of those other victims. Thank you so much. We appreciate it. If you get more details, specifically the identities, we'll definitely come back to you on that. A lot of worried people in that community whether or not they have a serial killer on their hands.

Their mom died in a roller coaster accident. This happened -- they say this experience really has been a nightmare. Rosie Esparza, she was on her first trip, this was to Six Flags Over Texas on Friday. Well, she was Riding the Texas Giant. This is a 14-story high roller coaster, and she was sitting next to one of her sons.

Our Ed Lavandera has the story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): -- a spine tingling drop. This is where witnesses say they saw Rosy Esparza fall from the wooden roller coaster. Carmen Brown was next in line to get on the ride when she heard the horrific screams.

CARMEN BROWN: She goes up like this and then when it drops to come down, that's when it released and she just tumbled.

LAVANDERA: Some witnesses told local news media that Esparza told a Six Flags' employee she was worried that her restraint had not locked properly. Esparza's son and other family members rode along with her. They had to ride out the two-minute roller coaster fearing the worst the rest of the way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They were screaming when they came back and they were trying to get out of the restraint. And they were screaming, my mom, my mom, we got to get my mom.

LAVANDERA: Six Flags Over Texas Hurricane Harbor refuses to answer questions on camera but in a written statements says, we are committed to determining the cause of this tragic accident. It would be a disservice to the family to speculate regarding what transpired.

According to a national safety council analysis of amusement park injuries, there were just over 1,200 ride-related injuries in 2011. About four percent of those caused serious physical harm. Roller coaster accidents accounted for about 28 percent of the injuries. But industry observers say amusement parks are loosely regulated and that it will be Six Flags that will be in charge of conducting the investigation, not an outside independent agency.

KENNETH MARTIN, AMUSEMENT PARK RIDE SAFETY ANALYST: Whatever organization comes in, whomever comes in their work is the property of six flags. It will remain the property of Six Flags and it will remain the property of Six Flags because there's nothing in Texas or many other states that make them have to release that information.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MALVEAUX: Ed is joining us live. Ed, what is next for this family? I imagine that they are just in shock at this point. Are they considering a lawsuit? Or how do they want to hold this amusement park accountable?

LAVANDERA (live): Well, you know, there is no question that that shock probably still hasn't settled in. But the family members have not made any public statements so far. I did get a chance to speak to one family member briefly on the phone who referred all of our calls to an attorney that they say that they have hired. I've reached out to that attorney as well to get a sense of what is going on. But you can imagine, behind the scenes right now, a very intense situation not only for the family but as the Six Flags Over Texas officials have been tight lipped and have shared very little information publicly as to what happened and how all of this could have happened.

MALVEAUX: All right, Ed, thank you. We appreciate it.

The NAACP is holding a town hall meeting. That is tonight and it is focusing on the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin shooting. Now, this meeting follows weekend rallies that were planned in more than 100 cities. Obviously, in Houston, you had dueling demonstrations playing out. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We fired up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go home racist. Go home racist. Go home racist.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No justice.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MALVEAUX: So, on one side, supporters of George Zimmerman and stand your ground laws and demonstrators on the other side demanding justice for Trayvon Martin taking to the streets. These protesters want federal charges filed against Zimmerman. Now, Martin's mother attended a rally in New York and she told the crowd she wanted their voices to be heard but she also called for the demonstrations to remain as they have been in large part, peaceful. Also attending the New York rally, Jay-Z and Beyonce who are responding in the Zimmerman trial.

And the president of the National Urban League talks about the aftermath of the Zimmerman verdict. Where do we go from here? Well, Marc Morial, he joins me live. This is the bottom of the hour, 1:30 p.m. Eastern on CNN NEWSROOM to talk about just that.

And, of course, we are also working on this for this hour. We are watching, royal baby could arrive any minute now. We are waiting outside the London hospital. We're going to show you what the scene is like out there.

And this is amazing. It's a 230-pound tuna giving a fisherman the fight of his life, nearing losing the battle.

And rescue teams scrambling now to find survivors after a deadly earthquake in China.

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MALVEAUX: This is a great story. This is man versus fish. The fish almost winning here. This is what you're looking at here. This is a rescue helicopter plucking a 54-year-old man, Anthony Wickman, from the hull of his capsized boat. This is 10 miles off of the coast of Hawaii. Now, Wickman, what happened here, he hooked a 230-pound tuna. This happened on Friday.

During the fight, well, the giant fish capsized the boat. Wound up tossing him overboard into the water. He was able to call his wife when he was in the water for help after scrambling onto the hull of the boat. In case you're wondering, well, the tuna was still on the line after Wickman was rescued. Salvage crews reeled the big fish in and then brought him to shore. Amazing story.

And we are following this, of course. Every moment counts. The wait for the newest member of the royal family almost over, we hope. Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, went into labor overnight. She is now at St. Mary's Hospital in London. This is the same hospital where her husband William was born and grandfather-to-be, Prince Charles, trying to take it in stride.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Prince Charles, we've got a present for you.

PRINCE CHARLES, PRINCE OF WALES: Thank you very much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's for the baby.

PRINCE CHARLES: Right. Well, I'll see what I can do. It hasn't quite appeared yet.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He thinks it's going to appear in six hours' time.

PRINCE CHARLES: Six -- he might be right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Six hours.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MALVEAUX: And our own Royal Correspondent Max Foster is there watching closely. So, Max, first of all, I mean, how long has it been that she's been in labor? Is it going on, what, 13 hours now?

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: Twelve hours roughly. At least -- well, at least 12 hours. But she came in 12 hours ago so -- and she was already in labor. So, yes, I mean, this is a long labor. It may have happened already. There is a process that they have to go through before it's publicly announced. There are other people that have to know first, the queen, the prime minister, for example.

You just heard from Prince Charles there. We've also heard from him since then, saying, I'm grateful indeed for the kind wishes from my rather slowly approaching grandfatherhood at the moment. But certainly we're all braced, you know, we're all ready for this. But, you know, Kate's got to do it in her own time.

MALVEAUX: Obviously, and, you know, slow approaching. I'm sure it feels kind of slow for Kate as well. And she wants to have a natural child birth, no pain medications there. Do we know who is at her bedside and do we know how this going to all unfold?

Reporter: Well, certainly William is at her bedside and then you've got the medical team, of course. There are some aids going in and out of hospital as well. I suspect that they're sort of around the room as opposed to in the room because they will be getting ready for all those formal announcements that happen afterwards. The press secretary, Ed Perkins, will be the guy who comes out with the notice and hands it to a messenger. That's the notice that contains the time of birth, the weight, and crucially the sex. But we won't see it until it arrives at Buckingham Palace and is put on an easel in the forcaw (ph).

So, that bit of theater (ph) is still to come. And we're all rather looking forward to it. And it could be tomorrow. You know, Suzanne, these things are driven by nature. But we're hoping it could be today because they did come in very early today.

MALVEAUX: And St. Mary's Hospital where we see the doors and people are anxiously awaiting there, I imagine a big crowd outside. Explain the significance of that place, because it really is historic.

FOSTER: Well, this is where Prince William was born and Diana came out on that door step more than 30 years ago and it's going to be sort of a reminiscent moment, really, when you see that picture and compare it to William as a baby. And people want to be part of this. Suzanne, if we can just switch the camera around that way. This is just one end of the street but people are trying to get as close as they can to try to witness something. Unfortunately, sitting there they're not going to see very much. They will be able to say they were here for this moment in British history.

Also have to tell you we are expecting Prince William potentially to come out and say a few words after the baby is born. That will depend on how he feels. It can be exhausting to fathers as well. I'll point that out as a knowledgeable father.

MALVEAUX: That's absolutely right. It will probably be worth the wait for those what are actually outside of the hospital there, they probably set up lunch, dinner, breakfast, tents, whatever. They will be waiting and get the first word on all that. Thank you so much, Max. Appreciate your patience in of this as well. Stay with CNN for the latest in the royal birth. Our crews are in place ready to bring you all the details as soon as we get the,

Hope for peace in Middle East reignited with word that Israel's prime minister and the a Palestinian authority leaders could meet in Washington, D.C. But can Secretary of State John Kerry's hard work go the distance? We'll look at the latest move toward a solution.

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MALVEAUX: A bit of breaking news, an update. This is something we brought to you the last hour. This is out of Cairo, Egypt. There's fighting that's taken place in Tahrir Square. We're learning more about this. A gunman has opened fire using an automatic weapon. At least one person fell to the ground. There were a group of pro-Morsy supporters, the deposed president that is, were marching toward the U.S. embassy when they were diverted toward Tahrir Square. And we understand that is when the fighting broke out between those who support Morsy and those who are against him who are camping out in the square. I want to bring in Reza Sayah, who is there, who can explain what has just taken place there and whether or not we expect this is going to get even worse. Reza.

REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Thse were brief buy fierce clashes between supporters and opponents of the ousted president Mohamed Morsy, and they happened right outside the parameter of Tahrir Square.

We're still trying to collect as many facts as possible to figure out exactly what happened. But here's what we know based on witness accounts. Multiple witnesses telling us several hundred supporters of the ousted president, Mr. Morsy, were marching toward the U.S. embassy to protest against that they call U.S. meddling in Egypt affairs.

Witnesses say at least some members of that crowd shifted course and started marching toward Tahrir Square which is the home base for opponents of the ousted president, and that's when clashes took place. Witnesses say both sides were firing weapons, what they described as birdshot, which is weapons that fire off multiple pellets.

One witness telling us an individual from the Morsy crowd took out what looked like an automatic weapon and fired into the Tahrir crowd and two people dropped to the ground. In chaotic situations like this, it's very difficult to figure out who is who and if anyone has any official affiliation with any movement or political party. The Muslim brotherhood and supporters of Mr. Morsy will be under a lot of pressure to explain why some of their supporters headed toward Tahrir Square and one of their protesters took out an automatic weapon. All of this is happening against the backdrop of a political crisis. This interim government trying to make a smooth transition into new leadership but supporters of the ousted president are outraged with what's happening. They are standing in their way and causing turmoil that we saw tonight.

MALVEAUX: They were headed toward the U.S. embassy. Do we know if anybody is in U.S. embassy? We know that there were warnings before for Americans when there was really a lot of violence to get out of Cairo.

SAYAH: Yeah, I can tell you the U.S. embassy was open today, but the marches took place after hours. And we went to the U.S. embassy and it was all clear. It is all clear. There was no violence there. The violence that witnesses saw took place in the outskirts of Tahrir Square, which is a few blocks away from the U.S. embassy.

MALVEAUX: All right. Reza Sayah, be safe. Appreciate it.

At least 89 people are dead. More than 580 injured. This is after a strong earth wake. This is in northwest China. Rescue teams are scrambling to reach the hardest hit area in a remote mountainous part of the country. At least 17 people are now believed missing. Eyewitnesss say that the shaking lasted up to a minute or so and train service was interrupted throughout the region. There were hundreds of police who have been dispatched to help prepare a major highway which was also damaged as well.

Sad news, White House journalist Helen Thomas died over the weekend. She was 92 years old. Starting with JFK, she covered ten presidents. I knew her well during my years reporting at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. She was a fixture at the White House news conferences, sitting front and center until retiring in 2010. She made presidents and their spokesmen squirm with her pointed questions. She was considered the dean of the White House press corps, the longest serving White House journalist and breaking ground as the first woman. She will be buried in Detroit. A memorial service planned in Washington in October.

A possible breakthrough now. This is in Middle East peace talks. Secretary of State John Kerry has announced, he announced it on Friday, that an agreement has been reached between the Israelis and Palestinians on a basis for resuming talks. Kerry has made several trips to try to get both sides to come back to the table.

I want to bring out Jill Dougherty at the State Department joining us live. Jill, they're calling it a breakthrough. They're coming to Washington to negotiate. But you and I both know, we've covered this many years here that it comes and goes. And perhaps this might be a chance for something to take place or it might be fleeting. Why do they believe something might get done?

JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN OREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Because they haven't had talks for three years. You could describe this as a breakthrough. But really the definition will be will those talks really get underway, and will the talks lead to something? And that is very far in the future.

What we know right now is this week it was expected or perhaps next. There would be negotiator from the Palestinian side and from the Israeli side coming here to Washington, talking and just a couple of minutes ago at the briefing here at the State Department the spokesperson Ken Psaki said they would be talking about the agenda and the process moving forward.

When asked when will they will here, when are the talks happening and almost anything else about the subject, she said we don't know. It's not determined and stay tuned. At those initial talks which would have Sab Aricot (ph) of course, from the Palestinian side, and Tzipi Livni from the Israeli side. Secretary Kerry could be taking part in those talks. They're very, very cautious. This is just the very beginning of a process that's fallen apart so many times.

MALVEAUX: All right, Jill Doughtery thank you. We appreciate it.

Two days after the president's reflective and thought provoking comments about the role of race in the Trayvon Martin killins, black leaders are asking what is next. We'll talk live to the head of The National Urban League which is meeting this week in Philadelphia.

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MALVEAUX: Republican senator joins the call to review stand your ground laws following the verdict in the Trayvon Martin shooting. President Obama called for a second look at the law during a lengthy and personal remarks he made regarding Trayvon Martin. Now, Arizona senator, John McCain echoed that call on CNN "STATE OF THE UNION" with Candy Crowley. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN JOHN MCCAIN, (R) ARIZONA: I can also see that stand your ground law may be something that needs to be reviewed --

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN ANCHOR: In Arizona?

MCCAIN: -- by the Florida legislature or any other legislature that has passed such legislation. Obviously a lot of things need to come up for review.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MALVEAUX: I want to bring in our chief political analyst, Gloria Borger. It's really interesting to see the debate spilling out over the weekend. People are still talking ant it this week. It's very passionate on both sides. What do you make of the fact that now you've got Republican senator John McCain also expressing support for re- examining stand your ground law like this president was as well.

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Yeah, he also expressed support to Candy about taking another look at it in his home state of Arizona. The governor of Arizona has said that stand your ground laws are a constitutional right. It doesn't seem like she's interested in changing them. And, Suzanne, you know, almost half the states in this country have some form of stand your grown law, so while it may come up in a bunch of state legislatures, they seem to be pretty popular.