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NEW DAY

Two Mega Millions Winners; Deadly Reno Shooting "Not Random"; Student Accused In Harvard Hoax; NATO Forces Under Attack; School Shooter Had A Plan; Fire Racing Through Big Sur; Miracle On The Tracks; Indian Diplomat Controversy; Stimulus Taper Coming Soon

Aired December 18, 2013 - 06:00   ET

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


(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If I win, there's going to be a party at the convention center, and you're invited.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Jack pot, two lucky winners in two different states hit the magic numbers and win the big prize. They split $636 million. So who won? We're live where the tickets were sold.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Terror at the hospital: a gunman opens fire at a medical center, killing one victim, others injured. What drove the shooter to kill? We're live at the scene.

MICHAELA PEREIRA: The Sochi snub, no heavy hitters among the White House delegation of the Olympics in Russia this winter, President Obama opting to include two openly gay athletes instead. Is this a direct dig at Vladimir Putin?

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, and Michaela Pereira.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome to NEW DAY. It is Wednesday, December 18th, six o'clock in the east. And let us start with good luck.

BOLDUAN: Yes, please.

CUOMO: Two people are holding tickets that match the winning numbers in the $636 million mega-millions drawing. Now, you may not have won the whole enchilada, but there's still riches to be had. So here are the numbers. Ready? Go scramble for your tickets. I hear your feet everywhere. Eight; 14; 17;20 and 39 with the mega-ball number of seven. One ticket was sold in California, the other in Georgia. We have correspondents standing by in both locations. Let's start with Dan Simon at Jenny's Gift Shop in San Jose. Hey, Dan.

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. While we're waiting to see if this mystery winner will come forward today, California lottery officials confirm that one of the winning tickets was sold here at Jenny's Gift Shop in San Jose, California. This in itself is a pretty compelling story because the store owner is a 37- year-old Vietnamese guy. He's got three kids and he just bought the store four months ago. His takeaway is $1 million and you can see his reaction.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

THUY NGUYEN, GIFT SHOP OWNER SOLD WINNING LOTTERY TICKET: The lottery called me. I come and take a look. You know? Everybody here, whoa! It will be a good one tonight!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SIMON: Well, lottery officials planning to have a little bit of a celebration here today. They're going to be putting up some special banners, a little bit later this morning. We'll send it back to Kate.

BOLDUAN: All right, Dan, thanks so much. If anyone looks completely surprised, shocked or elated, run back to the camera because we know who that person is. All right, let's continue the celebration. Let's go to Martin Savidge. He's at newsstand in Atlanta where the other Mega Millions jackpot winner was sold.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Kate, well, you know, the 22nd time apparently proves to be the charm when it comes to the Mega Millions and that newsstand we're talking about is called Gateway, located in this suburb, which is just to the north of Atlanta. And it's way back in that office complex, which due to privacy issues and rights of ownership, we're not allowed to show you at this particular point.

But here's the thing to be made, at least from the initial idea of what or who may have bought the winning ticket. Since it is in a big office complex, I guess, many people are saying it could be an office pool. It could be a lot of people that maybe won with this single ticket here in the state of Georgia. But then there's the other thing you should point out, Buckhead, this community is about as tony as communities come.

In other words, there is a lot of money up here. If a lottery winner is from here, they could go to Cartier down the street or Tiffany's and Versace. This is a very wealthy area. Everybody is waiting to find out who or how many in this state are now multimillionaires -- Kate.

BOLDUAN: All right, Martin, can't wait to see. Thanks so much.

CUOMO: All right, so let's go from the best of luck to the worst of fate. It's still not clear why a gunman walked into a medical building in Reno, Nevada Tuesday and opened fire. The suspect shot three people before killing himself. One of the victims is dead. Two others are in critical condition this morning. All police will say is the obvious. This was not a random act. Miguel Marquez is live in Reno this morning. Miguel, what do we know?

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Just another horrible shooting here. Just after 2:00 p.m., a gunman walked into the Urology Department here into the waiting room here, telling people to get out. They did. He went back to the area where the doctors and nurses were, says one witness, that's where he opened fire. Among those injured and killed were people in surgery, one of them a doctor.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MARQUEZ (voice-over): Yet another shooting, this time a state-of-the- art medical center targeted. One person killed, two more injured before the shooter took his own life.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We had a lone suspect enter the medical facility here with at least one firearm.

MARQUEZ: The shooting contained to the third floor of Reno's Renown Medical Center in its Neurology Office, a male gunman opened fire, killing one person, the shooting in a building next to the main hospital campus. Inside this walkway between the two, workers told to stay put, the entire complex on lockdown, an all too familiar scenario. This video shot while SWAT teams secured the building room by room.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stay in this room.

MARQUEZ: A systematic search by police.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On the third floor of the building they located two people down and they located a couple of injuries.

MARQUEZ: Amazingly, operations at the medical center resumed within an hour of police clearing it.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MARQUEZ: Now given that this was on the third floor of this building, one of the buildings on this sprawling campus here, police response was incredibly fast, about 5 minutes. By the time they got there, the damage was done, the shooter was dead. We expect more information 10:00 local, 1:00 p.m. Eastern. I'm sure we'll bring that to you live - Kate.

BOLDUAN: All right, Miguel, thank you so much. Now to Massachusetts for a surprising turn of events in Monday's bomb hoax at Harvard University. Police say the panic was allegedly sparked, get this, by a student trying to avoid a final exam. The 20-year-old Eldo Kim is in court today. CNN legal correspondent, Jean Casarez is joining us live with more. So Jean, what more are we learning about this?

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN LEGAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you're probably thinking how fast did this happen, this arrest? The affidavit is amazing, very articulate with so many facts. This sophomore at Harvard decided he didn't want to take an exam. So at 8:30 in the morning he called in a bomb threat. The subject line says bombs placed around campus. Shrapnel bombs placed in the Science Center, Sever Hall, Emerson Hall, Thayer Hall, 2/4. Guess correctly. Be quick for they will go off soon. This went to the president of the Crimson record and two random people. He said that he went to the hall where his exam was to be at 9:00. They tell everyone to evacuate after the fire alarm had gone off. He knew his plot worked. Here's what didn't work. He got a temporary e-mail address, a temporary IP address, sent this out, thinking he's going to be anonymous.

But the police department saw that a Harvard wireless network had been used by a student to access a temporary e-mail and IP address. That's how they traced him, went to his apartment, he was read his rights, Miranda Rights and he said I did it and I did it alone.

BOLDUAN: It sounds like it took some planning. They believe the motive was to avoid a final exam?

CASAREZ: That's what they're saying in the affidavit. Now he is facing federal charges, prison time, maximum five years. His initial appearance in court will be today. We'll be read his rights, a very constitutionally based hearing, but it's the beginning of a lot of trouble for him.

BOLDUAN: Sounds like a plot straight out of a movie. I think we can all agree, taking a final exam and failing it is much better than what he put people through and what he's about to face. Jean, thank you.

CASAREZ: Thank you.

PEREIRA: Let's check more of your headlines at this hour. Overnight, NATO forces came under attack in Eastern Afghanistan. A spokeswoman says three militants were killed in the firefight. No reports of casualties.

The Pentagon is investigating whether six American troops killed Tuesday in Afghanistan died when their helicopter crashed or from enemy fire afterward. One person survived that incident.

We're learning more now about the Colorado school shooter's plan of attack. Karl Pierson had written five school locations that he was targeting on his arm along with a Latin phrase that means "the die has been cast." Shooting victim Claire Davis remains in a coma after being shot in the head. Her father said she's not doing well and has asked the community to pray for her.

It looks like Congress has finally figured out how to pass a budget without shutting down the government. The Senate is poised to give approval to a two-year bipartisan spending plan today. President Obama says he going to sign it.

To Central California now, a race to save Big Sur's homes there. An unusually late fall fire has already destroyed several homes. They're hoping that rising humidity going to help them contain the blaze by Friday. The cause, meanwhile, is still under investigation.

And a miracle on the subway tracks. This man is a blind man. He and his guide dog narrowly missed being hit by a train in New York City. That is 6-year-old Cecil Williams. He fainted and fell on to the tracks at a Harlem subway station. His guide dog, Orlando, tried to keep him from falling, but then also tumbled on to the rails.

Both somehow managed to stay low enough on the track that when a train rumbled right over them, they are said to be doing well. But Williams says he has to put Orlando up for adoption because insurance will no longer cover the cost of caring for him. We'll talk more about this story later in the show. He is a sight for sore eyes, the fact that he lived to tell this tale.

CUOMO: That cannot be allowed to happen. That he has to put his training dog up for adoption.

PEREIRA: No. The dog saved his life.

CUOMO: He needs it.

PEREIRA: Yes, he needs that dog.

CUOMO: If you can't raise money for that cause, you can't raise money for anything. Stay tuned.

A little check of the weather now, let's get to Indra Petersons. Good to have you inside.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Thank you. I appreciate it as well. Hello. Snow tapering off from the system we saw yesterday. As far as how much we saw, we know the higher amounts are really out towards New England. In central park, it only measured about an inch. But remember so much of that snow melted on impact. We know we actually had kind of really falling all through the day.

What we're looking for today, some lake-effect snow, especially off Lake Erie and Ontario. In Maine, the system making its way up and several more inches could still fall until it exits offshore. Temperatures, cold in the northeast, but it will moderate quickly over the next several days. Right in the southeast, Memphis, Atlanta, these temperatures are climbing to well above normal, almost towards the 70s here. That is key.

I'll tell you why that could impact your weekend with severe weather. First take a look at what is going on out west. Two systems all you need to know here, first one goes a lot faster, second one, great news out towards California, chances for showers that should help them.

We'll talk about what this system is expected to bring over the next several days, light showers is what we'll be looking for here. Eventually by Friday, we'll be looking for light rain out of system. I had that big number two out there. Watch this one. All eyes are going to be on this. Models are varying as far as how much rain or snow. The big thing we'll be watching as we good through Saturday and Sunday, I told you how warm those temperatures were in the southeast.

Once you bring a cold system, you have a threat for severe weather. Kentucky back through San Antonio, by Sunday we'll look at the Carolinas back through Florida. That will be a big story as we go through the weekend, storms after storms rolling through the region and Saturday, Sunday to be talking about straight line winds and maybe a tornado, big story.

BOLDUAN: What a turn.

PETERSONS: Yes, right.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, Indra.

CUOMO: All right, coming up on NEW DAY, an international uproar. A female diplomat from India was arrested and strip searched in New York. The Indian government is firing back at the U.S. taking away security from the embassy. That's what you're watching. Why? We'll take you through it.

BOLDUAN: Also ahead, the Federal Reserve holding a critical meeting today. How the outcome could send the markets and your 401(k) spiraling.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY. Diplomatic uproar this morning over the arrest of an Indian consular official in New York, she was strip searched and held on $250,000 bond. Now the Indian government is firing back, removing -- just take a look right there -- removing security barriers outside the U.S. embassy.

CNN's Pamela Brown is here with much more on this. What's going on, Pamela?

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This really just seems like a mess, Kate. Officials in India seem to be more outraged over how the diplomat was arrested than why, calling the treatment barbaric. They are taking action and protest against the U.S. in several different ways.

Meantime, American officials acknowledging this diplomatic dispute is a, quote, "sensitive issue."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BROWN (voice-over): Watch as police remove the concrete security barriers in front of the U.S. embassy in New Delhi. Newspapers in India reporting the government is behind the anti-U.S. protest. Why? Retaliation sparked by an arrest of this Indian diplomat in New York City, Devyani Khobragade.

According to this criminal complaint, Khobragade, a deputy consul general, severely underpaid her babysitter, paying her $3.31 an hour, far less than minimum wage. The complaint also alleges the diplomat worked her babysitter far more than 40 hours per week, allegedly without overtime pay and then lied about all of this on visa documents, a violation of U.S. law.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My daughter has not done any wrong. She has nothing to do with this visa process.

BROWN: State Department diplomatic security arrested Khobragade last Thursday after she dropped her daughter off at school. She was later strip-searched and put in a holding cell with other defendants. Her lawyer says she pleaded not guilty.

DANIEL ARSHACK, DR. KHOBRAGADE'S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I have every expectation she'll be completely vindicated.

BROWN: Her arrest sparked outrage among Indian officials, some calling her treatment barbaric, one even calling for the partner of gay U.S. diplomats in India to be arrested, a country recently banned gay sex.

YASHWANT SINHA, FORMER INDIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: What the government of India can do immediately is to cancel those visas, arrest all these companions, put them behind bars.

BROWN: Indian officials also snubbed U.S. delegates visiting India, one tweeting, "refused to meet the visiting USA delegation in solidarity with our nation."

KAMAL NATH, INDIA'S PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS MINISTER: More steps should be taken against the United States until they give an unconditional apology.

BROWN: U.S. marshal service officials stand by their strip search procedures, saying they treated the diplomat the same way they treat everyone else.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thus far, all indications are that appropriate procedures were followed but nonetheless, we understand this is a sensitive issue and we're continuing to review exactly what transpired.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BROWN: And Khobragade's lawyer told CNN there was simply no reason to have arrested her on the street in front of her daughter's school nor to have strip searched her but a law enforcement source familiar with this case telling CNN that she was not arrested in front of her child and wasn't handcuffed until she arrived at the courthouse, a courtesy not afforded to most people according to this source.

So, that is the latest. Of course, we will bring you the latest on this story.

Back to you, Chris.

CUOMO: All right. Pamela, thanks for that.

It is "Money Time".

The Federal Reserve is holding a very important meeting today. They're expected make a big announcement about whether or not they'll begin tapering off the stimulus program. What is that? Why do we need it and what happens when it ends? Those are the questions.

For answers, CNN global economic analyst and "TIME" assistant managing editor, Rona Foroohar joins us.

Rona, take us through. Just give us the preview (ph) here.

RONA FOROOHAR, CNN GLOBAL ECONOMIC ANALYST: OK. So, the Federal Reserve has the last few years been spending a lot of money to buy up assets in the market, bonds, mortgage-backed securities, and the reason that they started doing this is that after the crisis, as we all know, markets collapsed. So one of the ways of increasing confidence and getting the economy back up and running was to buy up all these assets and try to push the markets back up.

CUOMO: All right. So, that's what's going on?

FOROOHAR: That's right.

CUOMO: What is the fear about tapering it? Why does it need to be continued?

FOROOHAR: Well, the question is how much of the rise in markets that we've seen in the last few months and years is due to the fact that the Fed has been spending all this money. So, $85 billion a month. That's a lot of money. The question is, when they start pulling back on the money dump, are the markets going to stay up or are we going to see them crash?

BOLDUAN: Isn't there some debate on how beneficial, how much of the economic recovery can be attributed just to the $85 billion a month?

FOROOHAR: Absolutely. That's the big question.

And this is what the Fed has to watch very carefully. They're looking for three things. They want to see that labor markets are stabilizing, which they have been over the last few months. They want to see that growth is back. And the new latest numbers is that growth is getting closer to 3 percent a year, which is more historic norm rather than 2 percent, which is what we've been in the last couple of years.

The third point, though, is inflation. Inflation is still pretty weak. And that says that demand in the underlying economy is not as strong as it might be. So, that's the big question mark right now.

PEREIRA: You talk about the labor market. It's believed by someone some that the program led to modest rise in job creation.

And if you remove that, is there going to be a program that's going to be put there to fill that gap?

FOROOHAR: Well, right. And the answer is probably no. I mean, one of the reasons why the Fed put so much money into the markets to begin with is that there was a feeling that Washington couldn't come together and come up with a better jobs program. So, the Fed was the last man standing that could do something about the economy. The question is, who has this money dump benefited? If you think about who owns stocks in this country, most -- 75 percent of the stocks are owned by the top quarter of the population. So, if you own stocks, a home, you're feeling the benefits. If you don't, not so much.

CUOMO: I feel there is a missed opportunity for outrage among people here, because of the disconnect between Wall Street and Main Street.

FOROOHAR: I think you should feel that.

CUOMO: Well, I'm going to suggest one right now to you. And you can tell me whether it's reasonable or not. The span between Wall Street and Main Street is growing all the time. Nobody needs us to tell them that.

The consistent argument from the people on the street, Wall Street, is: 'leave us alone, government. Do not regulate us. Let us figure it out for ourselves. It will help everybody else more.'

Well, that hasn't happened. They're not hiring. There aren't better paying jobs. And this is arguably the most artificial price support in the history of the stock market. Who are we helping except the people who already have money, with money we could use to do something else?

FOROOHAR: Well, it's a really strong argument. And, by the way, we heard the just leave us alone argument from Wall Street before. That didn't work the last time.

There are a lot of people that feel that all of this money has actually created market bubbles. When you look back, last summer around July, the Fed hinted that it was going to would start pulling back some of the spending and markets did correct. You saw emerging markets go down sharply, commodities were down sharply. So there are worries that this is creating risk in our economy.

BOLDUAN: This is also Ben Bernanke's last press conference he'll be holding as Fed chairman. What are you looking for? I mean, everyone parses his words so carefully. What are you looking forward to coming out of the meeting and what he says in this final press conference?

FOROOHAR: You know, what you want is clarity. The Fed is not always clear and they kind of speak in their own sort of jargon. You want him to lay out exactly what are they looking for going forward. And they've done a good job to be fair. They said we want a stronger labor market, we want more growth and we want to inflation to pick up a little bit. So, we'd like to see a continuation of that and just a clear pathway going forward.

CUOMO: Used to be what he would say who move the markets. That has become less and less so.

FOROOHAR: Right.

CUOMO: Not so much what they call the future predictions. BOLDUAN: There's a little more transparency with Ben Bernanke.

CUOMO: There's a lot of money being put in there on a regular basis and there hasn't been a great argument to show how it's helping the families that are struggling in this country. That's all I'm saying.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, Rana.

CUOMO: I'm blaming you, Rana Foroohar.

PEREIRA: No, no.

CUOMO: If Christine Romans had been here --

(CROSSTALK)

BOLDUAN: You might want to run.

Right. Coming up next on NEW DAY, call it the Sochi snub. No one from the First Family is going to the Olympics this year. Instead, President Obama is sending a delegation that includes gay athletes. Is the U.S. sending a message -- a very clear message to Russia.

CUOMO: Dennis Rodman on his way to North Korea once again days after Kim Jong-un executed his own uncle. So, here's the question. Is the NBA star putting himself in danger or is he endangering a very fragile relationship for the U.S.?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PEREIRA: Welcome back to NEW DAY. Let's bring you up-to-date on the latest news.

Lottery officials say two winning tickets were sold in last night's mega millions drawing. One at a small gift shop in San Jose, California, and the other, at a news stand in Atlanta, Georgia. The winners will share the estimated $636 million jackpot. It is the second largest in U.S. history.

Let's give you the winning numbers again in case you're a thousandaire -- 8, 14, 17, 20, 39 and the mega ball number is 7.

We still do not know the identity of a gunman who opened fire inside a medical building in Reno, Nevada, Tuesday afternoon. One person was killed, two others were critically wounded, the shooter then took his own life. Police are not discussing a possible motive, but they are saying that the shooting was not random.

A White House meeting with tech executives on the health care website quickly turned into a discussion about the NSA spying program. Top firms in the technology world are trying to pressure the White House into scaling back the surveillance. For its part, the White House says President Obama heard the executives' concerns and believes in an open and innovative Internet.

In Georgia this morning, the NTSB is on the scene of a deadly small plane crash in a suburban Atlanta neighborhood. Two people were aboard the plane when it went down in the backyard of a home in the riverside community in northwest Atlanta. Witnesses say it exploded in a massive fireball.

One neighbor says the pilot managed to avoid hitting any homes in that densely populated neighborhood.

NASA saying that two astronauts on board the International Space Station will have to perform an emergency space walk to fix a bad pump on an external schooling system. Officials say as many as three space walks may be needed to complete the repairs, that cooling system is one of two operation onboard the space station. If the second one happened to go out, then the crew would have to evacuate.

Quite a repair job. Critical, important and timely. Those are your headlines, guys.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, Michaela.

All right. The president, vice president and first lady will not be attending the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Instead, the White House is sending an official U.S. delegation to the games and also sending a message along with them.

Senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta is following developments for us at the White House.

All right. Jim, so, first up, who is going as part of this delegation?

JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: You know, this is very interesting, Kate.

I mean, just -- let's put this up on screen in terms of who is leading this U.S. delegation, because, you're right. It does send a message from this White House to Vladimir Putin and Russia. The U.S. delegation to the Olympic Games coming up in just a few weeks going will be led by former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. Also, on that list, Billie Jean King, the tennis legend, also an openly gay athlete, and then Caitlin Cahow, silver medalist at the Winter Olympics. She's an Olympic hockey player. She is also openly gay.

And this is really a message from the White House aimed at Russia's anti-gay policies. It's something the president even addressed when he was in Russia for the G-20 Summit earlier this fall, Kate.

BOLDUAN: So, what are you hearing from behind the scenes at the White House, Jim? Was this done purposely to send a message to Russian President Vladimir Putin?

ACOSTA: I think there's no question about it. I mean, keep in mind, this one quote which I think stands out from a spokeswoman here at the White House. It says the U.S. delegation to the Olympic Games represents the diversity that the United States has.