Return to Transcripts main page


Confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh; a year after Hurricane Maria Cleveland Browns finally won. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired September 21, 2018 - 02:00   ET


[02:00:11] NATALIE ALLEN, NEWSROOM ANCHOR, CNN: The woman accusing Supreme Court Nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, of sexual abuse now indicating she will testify without an FBI investigation. But there are several new conditions.

CYRIL VANIER, NEWSROOM ANCHOR, CNN: A year after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico is still struggling. The man who fed the island in the aftermath, Chef Jose Andres, joins us to talk lessons learned.

ALLEN: Also, the victory bridges are opened, and free beer is flowing. Yes, the Cleveland Browns notched a win for the first time in 635 days. Is it all about the win or the free beer?

VANIER: Not bad, not bad.

ALLEN: Hello, everyone. Welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. I am Natalie Allen.

VANIER: I am Cyril Vanier. You're watching CNN Newsroom.

ALLEN: Thank you again for joining us. A few days ago, the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court looked like a slam dunk. Now, an allegation of sexual assault from 36 years ago threatens to derail it.

VANIER: But if U.S. President Trump is worried about his nominee, you would not know it. At a political rally in Las Vegas, he basically told the crowd don't worry about it.


PRES. DONALD TRUMP (R), UNITED STATES PRESIDENT: So we'll let it play out, and I think everything's going to be just fine. This is a high quality person.


ALLEN: The entire situation may look very different one week from now. That is because an attorney for Christine Blasey Ford says she is willing to tell her story of sexual assault to U.S. senators under certain conditions.

VANIER: Now, remember Kavanaugh denies these allegations. We get more now from CNN's Jim Acosta.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We believe Anita Hill.

JIM ACOSTA, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, CNN: The battle over the fate of Supreme Court Nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, is escalating once again, with protests on Capitol Hill and demands flying back and forth, the latest, an email to the Senate Judiciary Committee from the legal team for Kavanaugh's accuser, Christine Blasey Ford. The email states Ford is willing to sit before the committee next week, adding she wishes to testify provided that we can agree on terms that are fair and which ensure her safety.

A hearing on Monday is not possible. That was in response to a letter from Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, Charles Grassley, who set a Friday morning deadline for Ford to decide whether she would appear at Monday's scheduled hearing. But sources told CNN that Friday deadline is negotiable, saying Ford has time to weigh her options. Democrats wonder what's the rush.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As a prosecutor, you know you cannot rush something like this. You have to have people investigated. That's what the Democrats on the committee have asked for. This rush to judgment makes you wonder what else are they trying to hide.

ACOSTA: Ford's attorneys say their client wants the FBI to investigate her accusation that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her while they were in high school. But Republicans are refusing that demand, even though Grassley himself was receptive to an FBI probe and to Anita Hill's allegations against Justice Clarence Thomas in 1991, accusations he described as an 11th hour charge.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When the FBI has completed its work, every committee member should be notified and have access to that report. Any determination by the committee should be made as to how we need to proceed with any allegations. A rule like this should ensure once and for all that even an 11th hour charge like yours has been fully considered.

ACOSTA: With her attorneys warning Ford has received death threats, her family released a statement showing support for Kavanaugh's accuser, saying we know how difficult this is for her. Chrissy is not someone who chooses to be in the spotlight. Her accusation promises to have a major impact on the upcoming midterm elections. Republican Congressman Ralph Norman mocked the accusation facing Kavanaugh at a debate in South Carolina.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The latest (Inaudible) of the Kavanaugh hearings, Ruth Bader Ginsberg came out and she was groped by Abraham Lincoln.

ACOSTA: It's no wonder Democrats say Ford is reluctant to testify.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I do hope that she testifies, but I deeply respect her hesitation given the ways in which her life and her family's life have already been disrupted by attacks, by disrespect, by death threats. ACOSTA: As for Kavanaugh, the judge stayed behind closed doors at the White House prepping for a possible hearing that may exclude any other witnesses. As aides to the President said Mr. Trump has been bragging about the way he has handled his latest Supreme Court pick. Senate Judiciary Committee is now weighing its next move and how to respond to these demands coming from Ford's legal team.

The committee could potentially hear from Ford later on next week if the GOP members in charge of that panel agree to her terms. Jim Acosta, CNN, the White House.


[02:05:06] ALLEN: Let's talk more about it with Amy Pope. She joins us from London. She is a senior fellow with the Atlantic Counsel and a former member with the National Security Counsel in the Obama administration. Amy thanks so much for joining us.

AMY POPE, SENIOR FELLOW, ATLANTIC COUNCIL: Good morning. I am glad to be here.

ALLEN: Thank you. We just heard Jim report on Mrs. Ford receiving death threats. We want to report the Kavanaugh family has also reportedly received threats. So this has certainly turned ugly. What is the hesitation, do you think though, on Capitol Hill to order a full investigation into Professor Ford's accusation? Why not check all the boxes?

POPE: I think this is political first and foremost. They are conscious that the clock is ticking before the midterms. There is concern that there's going to be a shift in the numbers. I think it's unlikely that the Senate goes to the Democrats. But if that were to happen, all of a sudden we're in a whole new ball game. So they want to move this forward as quickly as possible. Erase any doubt that that (Inaudible) court is theirs. And the way to do that is to push forward despite the costs.

ALLEN: Well, her lawyers want a fair hearing. In your opinion, how would that look?

POPE: At the very least, let's try to take this out of the public eye as much as possible. There needs to be a gathering of evidence. In my entire life, I was a prosecutor in the Justice Department. And I would never, never put someone on the stand without doing an investigation. It's not fair to them, to the people who come forward, and it's not fair to the accused.

So whether it's the FBI, whether it's another law enforcement agency, there is a way to conduct an investigation that is outside of the public eye that's not being done on television. That will give us more information and help either validate or invalidate the allegations that she's making.

ALLEN: Well, we know that her lawyers spoke with Republicans on the committee. The Republicans are thinking about bringing an outside counsel, which Republicans are considering because this counsel would likely be a woman to help with the fact that no Republican women sits on the committee. They don't want outside counsel. They want to keep it within the Senate committee. Which way would you advise them to go on that?

POPE: I think they need to make this as objective a process as possible. If outside counsel gives them greater objectivity, then that's a better answer. When this is about someone who's going to have a lifetime appointment on a Supreme Court, who's actually going to be deciding questions of what is guilt, what is sufficient evidence, what is appropriate due process?

So in deference to him and in deference to that process and in deference to the woman to who has come forward, it's incredibly important that we do this in a way that's not politicized, and I think that's by taking in outside arbiters.

ALLEN: We've been referencing the 1991 -- of course, hearings with Anita Hill with then Justice Nominee, Clarence Thomas, was accused of sexual harassment. He's now on the Supreme Court. Do you get a sense that in 2018, this hearing will have advanced vis-a-vis where we are today as far as the MeToo movement.

POPE: I hope so. But I think what's behind the MeToo movement is that the price of coming forward and making an allegation of sexual has always been too high, because the power dynamics were (Inaudible) that women were afraid that they would be publicly vilified. And the danger where we are at this moment in time is that we are going to repeat that very same dynamic.

Putting a victim of sexual assault in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, having her very publicly grilled, turning it into a he said, she said, sends a message to women all around the country that this is what could happen to you. It's basically asking her to relive the trauma that she went through but without the kinds of support that one would have if you were going through a regular trial or other adjudicate process.

And I think that's what Republicans and members of Congress need to be aware of. I know that they're anxious in Ms. Ford. I understand the dynamics behind it. But they face the very real possibility that they will recreate the dynamic of the MeToo movement, and will only embolden women to go out and vote against them.

ALLEN: There is much to consider, and the developments are coming fast and furious. We'll stay on top of it, of course. Amy Pope, thank you so much. We appreciate your insights.

POPE: Thank you for having me.

ALLEN: Cyril.

VANIER: Former Trump attorney, Michael Cohen, keeps on talking to investigators in the Russia probe. ABC News reports he's been interviewed several times by Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team in just the last month. Cohen confirmed the report when he retweeted this from his lawyer. Good for Michael Cohen in providing critical information to the Mueller investigation without a cooperation agreement.

No one should question his honesty, his voracity, or loyalty to his family and country over President Donald Trump.

[02:10:00] ALLEN: One year since Hurricane Maria and Puerto Ricans are still struggling. We'll have the latest on their long road to recovery coming up here.

VANIER: Plus, we talk to a humanitarian chef who served millions of meals to victims after Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Florence. I asked him how the response was different for both storms. We'll have that conversation just ahead.


VANIER: One year without reliable power, without running water, without proper medical care. One year after Hurricane Maria ravaged their home, many Puerto Ricans still struggle.

ALLEN: Puerto Rico's Governor, Ricardo Rossello, held a remembrance event Thursday in San Juan for the one-year anniversary. It was a somber affair as they remembered the nearly 3,000 people who died because of the storm. And while a year seems like a long time, the sad fact remains the recovery process is nowhere near complete. Our Leyla Santiago takes a look at Puerto Rico's struggles one year off.


[02:14:52] LEYLA SANTIAGO, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Clarissa Ramos has to do this. Every time it rains, neighbors (Inaudible) fill holes in the road to make what little Maria left passable, even narrowly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is the little road that we got. We just put dirt here. Look.

SANTIAGO: After Maria, Puerto Rico says only two percent of the island's roads were passable because of debris and land slides. But of course, for Clarissa, Hurricane Maria took away much more than a road. The storm stole her way of life. You can't talk about Maria without shedding a tear. Why?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's my first time I lived through something like that.

SANTIAGO: It would take nine months for hundreds of families here to have powered restored, 11 months for the entire power grid, and some communities are still on generators. Ricardo Ramos was the CEO of Puerto Rico's power authority, PREPA, when Maria struck the island.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The storm was just too big.

SANTIAGO: You knew what was coming. I mean I remember specifically you said our system is too weak to handle this. Why wasn't PREPA more prepared if it knew how vulnerable the system was?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You don't fix this in one day. You don't fix in one week. It takes 10 years to fix the vulnerabilities that the PREPA system had.

SANTIAGO: Now in charge of PREPA, Jose Ortiz.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's going to take four to five months more to stabilize the system.

SANTIAGO: And if a storm comes tomorrow, he says they're ready. There are 32 contracts in place to bring people in. Why didn't Puerto Rico do that for Maria?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They did, too late.

SANTIAGO: Too late for people like Natalia Rodriguez. His generator ran out of diesel in the middle of the night. The breathing machine he used shutdown. He died.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If we had electricity, normal electricity at that time, he could be alive.

SANTIAGO: Nearly a year after the hurricane, Puerto Rico changed its official death toll, jumping from 64 to 2,975, a number President Trump takes issue with. Tweeting 3,000 people did not die during in the two hurricanes that hit Puerto Rico. The change in death toll came months after CNN's investigation revealed the death toll was likely nine times what the government of Puerto Rico was reporting.

The latest death statistics are showing reasons for yet another concern. This is Puerto Rico's 24 hour suicide hotline. Twenty minutes after our arrival, a call comes in, a mother of two struggling with anxiety. She tells the operator Tropical Storm Isaac is looming too close. So he says in one eight hour shift he will take a call like that 30, 40 times.

Callers reaching out for help with the trauma that lingers, loss of a job, loss of a loved one, loss of a roof over their heads. (Inaudible) is one of at least 45,000 still depending on tarps in Puerto Rico. So we're in her room, and I hear thunder. It's tough because she thinks about what could be coming. We last saw Luce in the days after Maria. One year later, she acknowledges progress, but says she and the island have a long way to go. Leyla Santiago, CNN, Puerto Rico.


VANIER: Joining us now is world famous Chef, Jose Andres. Jose, it's great to have you on the show. Now, you have restaurants across the United States. You're a renowned chef. That's not why we're talking to you today. We're talking to you because you just co-wrote a new book, We Fed an Island, the true story of rebuilding Puerto Rico one meal at a time.

And your story relative to Puerto Rico is this. You landed on the island just days after the hurricane hit. Your goal was to just get food to people who needed it. In fact, you have a word that you use to describe yourself, which I love. You call yourself first food responders. In the end, the operation ended up lasting months and you served three million meals.

It was you and many other people, of course. So the question is when you're on, what's the biggest lesson that you learned from doing this in Puerto Rico?

JOSE ANDRES, CHEF: The biggest lesson I learned, and I think on the book, We Fed an Island, is very clear, it is that everything is possible. That's what you have to do is sometimes stop planning, stop organizing, and start cooking. That's what we did. We went from 20 volunteers the first day to more than 25,000, from 1,000 meals the first day to almost 150,000 a day.

[02:20:01] We reached 3.7 million meals. We went from 1 kitchen to 26 kitchens. That only shows you that the organization that was not supposed to be there was in the kitchen. What was impossible, we made it possible. That's what I learned, that everything is possible. You only have to start cooking.

VANIER: I want people to really get a good sense of what it was like and what kind of food you were serving. At the time, you showed my colleague Anderson Cooper. This is what it was like.


ANDRES: ANDRES: This is (Inaudible) corn and yucca and sausage, very, very big corn, very big on calories. And we gave them a sandwich, a piece of bread and a big bottle. And people, they think I'm here everyday.


VANIER: You also showed Anderson Cooper the biggest paella dish that he had ever seen. I think we have video of that as well. Tell me what was your biggest challenge on day one to get the first meal out?

ANDRES: It's very unbelievable you are showing the paella because the 20th of September has been World Paella Day in Spain. But thanks to those paellas, we were able to feed so many people. From day one, the main challenge was only to understand what was the situation on the island, and that's what I did. I landed and I tried to find what kitchens were available.


ANDRES: What was the situation with refrigeration and the food companies, what was the situation with the bread companies, and very quickly I got a very good assessment, very good intelligence. I knew that we had food, that we had bread. The only thing we had to do was making sure that those kitchens were ready. They had gas. They had electricity with generators. We gathered the cooks.

We gathered the foods. And we began feeding. We didn't plan to feed the entire island. We were only taking care of one hospital at a time, one shelter at a time. As people learned we were doing it, we began getting phone calls. We never said no to anybody. We kept feeding and feeding day after day. VANIER: You're very, very critical of the Trump administration's response to the aftermath of the hurricane, and also more established -- I mean charities, established charities like the Red Cross. You criticized them quite openly in your book. Where do you feel they all fell short?

ANDRES: I want to make sure. I criticized not the men and women. The men and women...


ANDRES: The volunteers are unbelievable. The organizations, I do believe all together, we need to have a very good critical conversation about where we fell short. So FEMA, the men and women of FEMA overall they did their best. They tried their best. But sometimes the red tape doesn't allow them to be successful. So I do believe we show because we show, because we were a small NGO outside the grid.

We showed that everything is possible when you don't have so many regulations. So here, I am critical of the Trump administration. Between you and me, the Trump administration, President Trump failed the American people of Puerto Rico. That's what we need to make sure that never happens again. This was the biggest hurricane in the history of America, and we didn't have the game.

I don't blame them for not having the game. What I think is that we didn't adapt. We didn't have a response. We didn't have any, any game to try to improve on the shortfalls of the preparations for the initial hurricane. That's what they -- I am blaming them for. And those 3,000 deaths, between you and me, they are on the shoulders of President Trump.

We need to make sure that something like this will never ever happen again in the most powerful country in the world, which is the United States of America.

VANIER: So compare for me what you saw in Puerto Rico and what you saw in the Carolinas, because your group was also involved more recently in serving food in the Carolinas in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence.

ANDRES: In the Carolinas, we served already around 150,000 meals. We have three, four kitchens from Raleigh to Wilmington to New Bern. We have feeding shelters, neighborhoods, National Guard, first responders. The difference, many weeks, if not months later is still we had trees in the middle of the roads. In the Carolinas, the trees are gone. A month later, still we had electrical poles, the power lines down.

[02:25:03] There are thousands of power trucks all across the Carolinas fixing those poles hours after the hurricane passed by. The feeding operation, even the White House has done tweets and press releases about the feeding game in the Carolinas. Actually, I am very proud and very happy that that happened. Between Maria and Puerto Rico, we forgot about the American people in Puerto Rico. In the Carolinas, thank god, we learned the lesson. And actually, I

am very impressed, especially with Governor Cooper of North Carolina because he's been a leader. You see him there. You see him everyday. And he's using the force of the federal government, of the NGOs, of the private sector to make sure that every person in North Carolina is going to be taken care of.

VANIER: And that is good news indeed. Jose Andres, thank you very much. May you feed many people who need it. Thanks for coming on the show.

ANDRES: Thank you.

ALLEN: Well, coming up here, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Nominee Brett Kavanaugh's accuser says she will take her story to Washington, but only under certain conditions. Among them, she wants protection from death threats. More about that as CNN Newsroom continues live from Atlanta.


VANIER: And welcome back. I am Cyril Vanier.

ALLEN: I am Natalie Allen. Let's update you on our top stories this hour. U.S. President Donald Trump is defending his embattled nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court. Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation could be in jeopardy due to an allegation of sexual assault when he was in high school.

[02:30:00] ALLEN: Mr. Trump told a rally in Las Vegas, he stands by Kavanaugh because he's, "A fine, fine person."

CYRIL VANIER, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: The drama is far from over however. The man -- the woman who made the accusation, Professor Christine Blasey Ford now appears willing to tell her story to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. But Ford's attorney says she first wants assurance for her safety due to death threats since she went public.

ALLEN: Meantime, ABC News reports that former Trump Attorney Michael Cohen has now met with the special counsel's team several times. It says prosecutors were mostly interested in Mr. Trump's dealings with Russia and whether anyone ever discussed a pardon with Cohen. Joining me now is Larry Sabato. He's Director of the Center for Politics, at the University of Virginia and author of The Kennedy Half-Century. Larry, we appreciate you coming on.


ALLEN: Let's talk about the hearing on Capitol Hill. Can it be fair to both sides without an investigation? The accuser, Mrs. Ford, a lower tier female and the accused, Judge Kavanaugh for Supreme Court Justice. A higher tier male giving a he said she said. Can this be fair? SABATO: I doubt it in the end. I bet both sides don't think it's

fair before it's over. It would be better to have a thorough investigation in advance so that the committee would have more information and would be able to point their questions toward the unknowns whatever those unknowns are after they hear from Dr. Ford and also talk to Judge Kavanaugh. But it's -- this has become so political. It is so intensely political. It is so divisive.

It fits right in with the polarization that we've seen in our country for almost anything that matters during the Trump administration.

ALLEN: Right. The New York Times is reporting that evangelists leaders are putting the pressure on Republicans to push Judge Kavanaugh through before the midterms at the same time women came to the capitol and droves in support of Professor Ford. So it's definitely something seen as political and they also don't you have the Me Too Movement involved? But some have questioned whether this hearing is just an appeasement to the Me Too Movement. What do you think?

SABATO: Well, this comes in the middle of a hotly contested election season. And, really, I don't think that Republicans have a choice about hearing Dr. Ford assuming they could actually work out all these details. If they were to simply shut her out, it would even be worse than the way Anita Hill was treated back in 1991 when she accused now Justice Clarence Thomas of major sexual harassment at work and you remember what happened to many of those senators as a result.

They had a very difficult year or two after that. So it's pretty obvious that the Senate has to do something. The Me Too Movement makes it difficult for the Senate to do anything but a major examination of this. If they -- if they simply paper over this and they -- they're only interested in getting at the surface details, I don't think people will accept that today. Unfortunately, they did accept it back in 1991. Our standards weren't quite as high and as exacting as they are today.

Whether these new standards will be enough, though, is a question that remains unanswered. We'll have to see how it develops.

ALLEN: We will indeed. Let's look at another development, Larry, involving President Trump. His former lawyer, fixer, Michael Cohen has been talking with the Mueller prosecutors for weeks apparently about any business and campaign connections between Mr. Trump and the Russians. Do you see this as a significant step forward for investigators?

SABATO: I don't see how you cannot judge this as being significant because Michael Cohen for all of his faults knows a great deal about the private Donald Trump and the Donald Trump of the business world, not just the political world. And he was with Trump for so long. He and the president's accountant who also is being questioned probably can provide the prosecutors with some very interesting information. So the counsel in this case, Mr. Mueller and his team have a lot to work with. Now, you never know what they're really producing. You never know if

they're finding evidence of a crime. You don't even know what questions they're asking. But it's significant to me that they have spent this much time with Michael Cohen and that Cohen is being as cooperative as he is because currently he doesn't have a deal with the prosecutor at least not one we know about.

ALLEN: Right. Four former Trump connections are now cooperating, Larry. Can Mr. Trump still claim this is a ridiculous witch hunt as we head toward the midterms?

[02:35:05] SABATO: Maybe legitimately he can't claim that, Natalie, but I think we both watch President Trump long enough to know that he will continue to claim that. It doesn't matter what the facts are. And we've seen over and over and over again that his very large base in the country will support him almost 100 percent of them. So, yes, it will continue. It doesn't matter how ridiculous it is. And it will give him a buffer between the independent counsel -- special counsel and the results of whatever this investigation actually turn out to be.

ALLEN: Larry Sabato, always appreciate your insights. Thanks so much.

SABATO: Thank you, Natalie.

VANIER: A surgeon and his girlfriend accused of drugging and raping two women in California. And investigates say there could be many more victims. We'll have more on this developing story when we come back.


ALLEN: In California, at least six more possible victims have come forward in the case of a couple accused of drugging and raping women. Dr. Grant Robicheaux and his girlfriend, Cerissa Riley, have already been charged with assaulting two women. Police believed though there could be many more. And our Sara Sidner reports the couple denies any wrongdoing.

SARA SIDNER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Surgeon Grant William Robicheaux seemed like a catch when he went on reality T.V. on a dating show. But police are saying that the reality is that Dr. Robicheaux was raping women when they were unconscious or semiconscious. They say he and his girlfriend, Cerissa Riley were in their apartment. They would go to bars. They would pick-up women that Cerissa would put drugs into women's drinks.

For example, the date rape drug, GHB. They would also -- they have other drugs in their -- in their -- in their home, ecstasy according to investigators as well as using potentially anesthesia on some of these women.

[02:40:11] And they say that they would -- they would do that. They would render the woman semiconscious or unconscious, take them to this apartment, have sex with them, rape them, and then they would videotape it. How did the police find out about all of these? Well, apparently at some point in 2016, a woman was inside of the apartment. She became conscious suddenly and started screaming. And then the neighbor heard the screaming and that neighbor called police.

Police have been investigating this for as you know at least a year or so because it happened in 2016. It is now 2018. They were able to get a warrant. They said that they found out about all of this according to the district attorney because they looked at the phones, the device of Dr. Robicheaux where they saw all these videos of women they say were conscious or unconscious, excuse me, or semiconscious. But Dr. Robicheaux and his girlfriend, Cerissa Riley, both have attorneys.

Those attorneys have said that they are completely innocent, that they did nothing wrong and that the sex was consensual. And so that is what the attorneys have put out saying that they are innocent until proven guilty and that their clients are innocent. Police beg to differ and they believe that there are dozens more women out there who are potential victims of this couple. Not only in the State of California but in Nevada and in Arizona, potentially some other places that they would frequent.

They have asked that women come forward and make police reports. They already now have, they started with two women who came forward. They now have eight women who have come forward and they believe there will be many, many more. By the way Dr. Robicheaux and his girlfriend have both bailed out of jail. They are facing a myriad of charges. Sara Sidner, CNN Los Angeles.

VANIER: In India now, the mother of a seven-year-old rape victim says the child's attacker should be hanged. The girl is recovering in a New Delhi hospital currently. A 21-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the rape. The child's case is yet another reminder of a long string of attacks on girls in India. CNN's Anna Coren talked to the girl's mother. She's live in New Delhi. Anna?

ANNA COREN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Cyril, this is becoming an all too familiar story here in India where young girls are being brutally raped. Now, the mother of this seven-year-old victim, she wanted to speak to CNN because she says this has to stop happening to India's children.


COREN: After three days by her daughter's hospital bedside, this 26- year-old mother returns to her home in this poor neighborhood in New Delhi to bathe and change her clothes. She walks passed the rubbish and stray dogs as she has done every day of her life. But this time, her heart is heavy filled with sorrow for her seven-year-old child who has suffered what too many girls in India have already endured. Never in my life had I thought this would happen to me or my child.

But what can you do? Our fate turned on us. On Monday night, her daughter was rushed to this hospital bleeding profusely after being brutally raped. Her mother says she had been at a temple playing with friends when a man who collects the rubbish in their neighborhood took her to a park. She told police he jumped on her tiny body, tied a hose around her neck to stop her from screaming while he raped her, and then inserted the hose inside her.

A 21-year-old man has been arrested and is now in police custody. When I saw the blood coming out of her, there was no strength left in my body. I thought she was going to die. The girl underwent emergency surgery and is recovering in hospital. But it's a case that is clearly shocked the doctors now caring for her.

SHALINI RAJARAM, GYNECOLOGIST, GURU TEG BAHADUR HOSPITAL: She's thin, malnourish. And she's crying. She's clearly traumatized. And it's a terrible thing. It's something that we can't sleep when we see such things. We -- it's difficult for even as --

COREN: This is the latest in a string of brutal rape attacks on young girls and women in India where according to the National Crime Records Bureau more than 100 rapes occur on average every day. And while the government has toughen laws against rape and is just setup in national registry of sex offenders. One prominent minister believes sexual violence is a social problem and a real challenge to the country.

[02:44:51] KIREN RIJIJU, INDIAN UNION MINISTER OF STATE FOR HOME AFFAIRS: It's shameful for the whole society. It's not a question of how many incidents. More incidents mean more shameful. But I'm saying even one incident of the brutal case of rape is a shameful for all of us.

COREN: Just last month, India finally passed a law introducing the death penalty for rape of a girl under the age of 12. And while human rights groups say, this is not the solution, the mother of the seven- year-old girl believes this is the only way her daughter will get justice.

"He should be hanged. Life imprisonment is too small a punishment. It's nothing compared to what he has done. He should definitely be hanged."


COREN: Now, Cyril, this minister who we spoke to is very close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. And he says, the government is taking the issue of sexual violence very seriously. They've obviously introduced the death penalty, toughened laws, toughen sentences and has started these, these fast-track courts. But as we know, with the bureaucracy here in India, there are some 6 million cases still pending before those courts.

So, they realize this is a huge challenge for them. But, he says this is not a cultural issue or a socio-economic issue. This is a social issue. A mindset, a very regressive mindset, these attitudes towards women and children that must change. It does not belong here in India. Cyril.

VANIER: Yes, Anna, your report was a tough story to watch. These stories always are. Anna Coren reporting live from New Delhi in India. Thank you very much. And you're watching CNN NEWSROOM. The news continues right after the short break. Stay with us.


[02:50:22] VANIER: OK. Welcome back. Now, I'm not American, but living here you come to understand the importance of American football. So, this caught our attention. Let me share this with you. The scene in Cleveland, Thursday night after this happened. All right, take a quick look.

OK, the Cleveland Browns and their fans going little nuts. Did they just win the Super Bowl or what? No, they didn't. They just won a game. A regular season game against the lowly New York Jets.

ALLEN: This was a major feat for them because the Cleveland Browns have been objectively banned for the last few years they have not won one single game since 2016, that 635 days. And for this extra special win, there you have it, what else, but free beer.

Bud Light unlocked fridges filled with beer in at least 10 bars across the city. And we can only assume all of Cleveland was singing this song.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cleveland rocks. Cleveland rocks. Cleveland rocks. Cleveland rocks.


ALLEN: Yes they won a game. And that is big news because it's been a while since they've won a game. So, we have on with us right now, a writer with Cleveland Sports Talk, Christian Hinton, who is with us there in Cleveland. Christian, can you tell our international viewers, perhaps, why it's such a big deal that the Cleveland Browns won their game?

CHRISTIAN HINTON, WRITER, CLEVELAND SPORTS TALK (via telephone): Well, first off guys. I want to thank you for having me on. And second off, I'm mean gee whiz, it's been over 630 days since the Browns won which I know for some NFL teams, and for some fans of other sports teams ridiculous. But the Browns fans, it is what it is. And you know, I think today's game is really important for a couple of reasons.

Number one, because our first overall pick, Baker Mayfield came in and was able to play very well. And you know, obviously, we got the W so it's very, very exciting.

VANIER: I don't want to labor the point too much. We'll get to the celebration, the well-deserved celebration for Cleveland fans in just a second. But basically, what our viewers need to understand is that -- is that Cleveland pro-sports are have been pretty much losers in recent history, with the notable exception of an NBA championship. I'll give you that. But that's been the identity for you guys for quite a while. HINTON: Yes. I mean, for sure. One thing that I think is really important to realize going for I guess the whole audience to realize is that Cleveland's on the come-up. You know, obviously, we have an NBA championship into 2016. But you know, the Cleveland Indians have been very successful as a recent. They just caught the A.L. Central.

And obviously, the Browns get their first win and it looks like -- looks like they're moving up as well.

ALLEN: It's also --

HINTON: So, it -- it's a very exciting time to be a Cleveland fan and this is -- this is something that I wouldn't normally say in the past couple of years. But I feel -- I feel bad for people who aren't Cleveland fans because it's a very, very exciting time right now.

ALLEN: That is a true sports writer right there for the home team. All right. Well, there's another part of the story and that is the celebration. Yes, there was free beer if they won. Let's put up the tweet from the Cleveland police.

VANIER: Hit them with the tweet.

ALLEN: This is what the Cleveland police tweeted, Christian. "We won! Wait, oh God, the free beer thing. OK Cleveland, stay calm. Go Browns!"

How did it go tonight with the free beer thing?

HINTON: Oh my gosh. Well, from the stadium, I mean, you could just tell, there were people talking like, oh my gosh, should I -- can we -- can we Uber to this bar? Oh my gosh, it's extra money to Uber now and all this stuff. And people were -- it was almost like people wanted to leave early from the game just to go to these bars and get this free beer.

It was pretty funny. We did pass by a bar that had the beer, and there was a line out of the door. I feel like the bars would have been smart to put a cover charge to get in that night. But yes, it was -- it was wild, the traffic was wild, people were honking their horns.

I would compare this -- now, I don't want to go too far. But I would compare this to the -- when the Cavs won the championship, Cleveland was crazy. I mean, people were honking their cars, playing loud music. This wasn't quite as excessive, but it -- it was -- it was still -- it was so pretty exciting. It was one of the most fun games in Cleveland sports history as of recent for sure.

[02:55:21] VANIER: And Christian, one more thing real quick, not only did you guys win this game, but you also found out about your new rookie. And you know, he's something, Baker Mayfield.

HINTON: Absolutely. I mean a couple of things about Baker -- you know. We saw him in the pre-season and you know the coaches were steadfast that Tyrod Taylor was the starter. Which I understand actually I actually supported that. If you got -- you guys can read my recent article about that. But no, I've always been high on Baker. And I'm really glad that we got him with the first pick. You look at the -- look at some of his skills, his arm, his feet in the pocket.

You know his vision it -- it's all -- it reminds me of a veteran. Somebody who's been in the league for a very long time, but he's already got these skills. And you know, he the competitor man. He, he wants to win and it's contagious. It really is with the team. And I think that's really important. And hopefully, he'll be the starter going forward and he'll be able to, to be able to ignite this Cleveland Browns team for the future here.

VANIER: Yes, you'd be crazy not to start him for the next couple of games. It's not for the season. The Cleveland -- the Cleveland curse is broken. At least, in football tonight.

HINTON: Ye, it's great. It's very, very exciting.

VANIER: Christian Hinton, thank you so much for joining us. Appreciate you taking the time.

OK, let's hope it's not a one-off, go Browns.

ALLEN: Go Browns.

Thanks for watching this hour, don't go anywhere we'll be right back with more news. See you in a minute.