Skip to main content

tv   Early Start  CNN  April 13, 2012 2:00am-4:00am PDT

2:00 am
before the start of the internet. but mark twain's off-quoted line about the report of his death being greatly exaggerated. maybe that's not as cute as boo's statement, but it's still darn near perfect. how i wish mark twain was on twitter. i think i can say for all of us with great relief, at least we still have boo. that's it for us. thanks for watching. "early start" begins right now. and good morning to you. welcome to "early start." i'm ashleigh banfield. >> i'm gried zoraida sambolin. after weeks in hiding, george zimmerman made his first court appearance for the shooting of 17-year-old trayvon martin. prosecutors saying the neighborhood watch volunteer followed the unarmed teenage other after aa police dispatcher told him to back off. pyongyang we have a problem. depositing a long-range rocket right into the smack of the
2:01 am
ocean, the damage is done. united nations security council will talk about this, the north korean threat, later today. newark, new jersey, mayor cory booker, already a rising star. now he's a superhero after i ran into a burning home to help save a woman. he was hospitalized. we have an update on his condition. using your money to reward what some call a jackass. the gift that keeps on giving. we'll explain. up first, the state versus george zimmerman. it's official. florida prosecutors laying out their case against the man now accused of murdering 17-year-old trayvon martin. after weeks in hiding, we got our first full look at the neighborhood watch volunteer as he went before a judge. >> mr. zimmerman, you're appearing for your first appearance at this time for the charge of murder in the second degree. and you are represented by mr. o'mara,that sflu.
2:02 am
>> yes, sir. >> via video, the judge ruling there is probable cause for the case to proceed. prosecution alleging that zimmerman, quote, profiled trayvon martin and disrashded a police dispatcher's request by continuing to follow him. zimmerman's attorney says he's worried about getting a fair trial in sanford, florida. >> he is very concerned about the way he has been portrayed and the way this case has sort of seemingly gotten almost out of control. he doesn't quite understand it. he doesn't understand why people view him in a way that he perceives to be so different than his reality. >> cnn's anderson cooper talked to trayvon martin's family about watching zimmerman in court. >> what is that like to see it? this is something you've been wanting for so long, ever since your son was killed. >> it actually helps a little to see that the person that shot and killed troi van will be held
2:03 am
accountable for what he has done. >> zimmer machb's next court hearing is scheduled for may 29th. cnn's martin savidge is live in sanford, florida, this morning. the facts are sort of coming out fast and furious, some are facts, some allegations, even in the affidavit. we have to be clear these are allegations by the prosecution. there's a lot on the docket. what's up next? >> reporter: well, i was just referring back to that probable cause affidavit because, really, that's kind off the cliff notes that we get from the state as far as what their case is outlining against george zimmerman. and it's kind of interesting what they say. it's very one-sided, which you would expect. it says, george zimmerman profiled him, pursued him, frightened him, confronted him, eventually shot him after some sort of altercation. and that is very much in keeping with the account that trayvon martin's parents have given all along. but it greatly discounts, of course, george zimmerman's tale of what he said happened to him,
2:04 am
which is that he stopped following trayvon martin, that he was returning to his car and trayvon confronted him, punched him in the nose and that began the life-and-death struggle on the ground. the account says, quote, zimmerman confronted martin. the state says the person calltion for help was martin and it apparently relies very heavily on the testimony of the girlfriend that was on the telephone with trayvon martin right up until the sthoot shooting occurred. zimmerman's attorney says his client is very frightened. >> i think that type of trauma, being involved in a situation where someone passed away, carries with it a lot of stress and, of course, he's facing second-degree murder charge and a potential life sentence. i think if any of us had that going on it would be an enormous amount of stress. >> reporter: right now george zimmerman remains in administrative confinement, they call it, which is essentially
2:05 am
he's being kept away from the general population. >> well, we heard a report from abc that he may have been seen weeping while he was, as you described, in administrative confinement last night. but he has some availing himself of the comforts of jail as well. what do we know about that? >> reporter: well, we got a look, it's amazing the detail that comes out, as to the shopping list and what he purchased at the jail store. it appears that he is stocking up on planning to be there for some time. he purchased clothing. he purchased a deck of cards, snacks, drinks, crossword puzzles, a lot of things that would suggest he knows he's going to be there a while. >> also suggests he's already got an account set up, at least with $74.89 in it. mar martin, thanks very much. it's 5 minutes past the hour. and after all of that, it was a dud. north korea making good on its threat to fire a long-range rocket, only it broke up after launch and ended up in the ocean. no matter how embarrassing it is, it is considered an
2:06 am
escalation. it is not the first time a north korean rocket failed. but it is the first time they have admitted failure. here's u.s. a.mbassador bill richardson who has visited north korea several time. >> i wouldn't want to be the head of north korea's space agency right now. it is a failure. there's obviously a gap in the technology, the ballistic technology of north korea. i do believe it was a cover, this launch, for ballistic missile technology, long-range military purposes, but it's a failure. >> and a third nuclear test may soon be coming. the united nations will be talking about the threat moving forward today. stan grant is in pyongyang, north korea. stan, i think it was about a week -- are you there for us? oh, i'm sorry. here he is. >> reporter: well, this is the media center you can see around me here. we've been in a holding pattern
2:07 am
now for hours, ever since we learn of the rocket launch. now, north korea has taken a great gamble bringing all of these crews here, a crush of cameras, to be able to see exactly what has been going on here. they were so confident that this would actually be a success. well, now we're hearing from state media here in north korea that they are confirming that this was a failure and scientists are now looking into exactly what the cause of that may be. we heard that earlier from the united states, from south korea and japan. they are also now scouring the sea off the coast to see if they can find any debris. that of course is going to be very important in trying to indicate exactly how much technology north korea has. you can't under state what an m embarrassment this is. not only fwauz the media is here but this was meant to be the pinnacle of the massive celebration planned for the centennial for the founding person of the country, kim il-sung. there is a huge celebration here, putting up banners across
2:08 am
the city, there is a massive display planned as well, and this rocket launch was really going to seal this. and all of this now raises questions, not just about the technology they have and their ability to call this off, but also about the risks that they have taken here. this raises real question marks about ongoing food aid from the oouts and of course raises the stakes in a very volatile region. now, we're expecting to hear something from officials here in the coming hours. at the moment, there's just been an empty chair over here surrounded by microphones. when with we finally get that confirmation from the officials themselves, we can see what story they are going to tell. do they concede what the rest of the world is saying? or will they be able to convince their people that, despite this failure, they are still a powerful and prosperous nation? stan grant, cnn, pyongyang. >> thanks to stan and apologies to you. we lost him at the last minute there. and it is now 8 minutes past 5:00. this just in -- gas prices, can you guess?
2:09 am
dropping. >> that's what they're predicting. lets' hope it continues. >> dropping for the seventh day in a row. if you've been watching, you had a nice little run here, haven't we? the national average is $3.90 per gallon, price of gas up about 19 cents since the start of the year, but seven drops in a row we'll take it. yes. still ahead, president obama defends mothers and mitt romney's wife after a democratic strategist said ann romney never worked a day in her life. and give the man a key to his own city and look what he goes and does with it? he goes rescuing people. our hero mayor of newark. why cory booker is the man of the day, maybe the week, maybe even the year. find out what he did when he saw his neighbor in a burning building. you're watching "early start." e can be such a big thing in an old friend's life. purina one discovered that by blending enhanced botanical oils into our food, we can help brighten an old dog's mind
2:10 am
so he's up to his old tricks. with this kind of thinking going into our food, imagine all the goodness that can come out of it. just one way we're making the world a better place... one pet at a time. vibrant maturity. from purina one smartblend. ♪ i can do anything ♪ i can do anything today ♪ i can go anywhere ♪ i can go anywhere today ♪ la la la la la la la [ male announcer ] dow solutions help millions of people by helping to make gluten free bread that doesn't taste gluten free. together, the elements of science and the human element can solve anything. solutionism. the new optimism. mcallen, texas. in here, heavy rental equipment in the middle of nowhere, is always headed somewhere. to give it a sense of direction, at&t created a mobile asset solution to protect and track everything.
2:11 am
so every piece of equipment knows where it is, how it's doing or where it goes next. ♪ this is the bell on the cat. [ male announcer ] it's a network of possibilities -- helping you do what you do... even better. ♪ [ technician ] are you busy? management just sent over these new technical manuals. they need you to translate them into portuguese. by tomorrow. [ male announcer ] ducati knows it's better for xerox to manage their global publications. so they can focus on building amazing bikes. with xerox, you're ready for real business.
2:12 am
it is 12 minutes past the hour. time to check the stories making
2:13 am
news this morning. a road map for the prosecution in the trayvon martin shooting. george zimmerman making his first court appearance yesterday to answer second-degree murder charges. zimmerman claims it was self-defense, but the state's probable cause affidavit says he profiled the black teenager, then confronted and murdered him. north korea launching a long-range rocket, but it broke apart in flight. the u.n. security council will discuss the launch today. the obama administration says the united states will no longer provide food aid to north korea. and a deadly shooting at a cracker barrel restaurant in brooklyn, ohio, a suburb of cleveland. police say say gunman opened fire killing two and wounding a third. he was shot dead by police after refusing to surrender outside the restaurant. authorities say the suspect was apparently distraught after his wife said she was leaving him. an armed standoff happening right now in greenland, new hampshire. authorities there facing down a suspect they say killed one
2:14 am
police officer and wounded four others in a shootout. police first arrived at the home as part of a drug investigation. authorities say the alleged gunman is now barricaded inside with an unidentified woman. the town's police department has only ten members. democratic strategist hilary rosen has now apologized for saying ann romney never worked a day in her life. her remark about the stay-at-home mother of five set off a political sonic boom yesterday with the white house trying to get as far away from it as possible. president obama even weighing in, saying that doesn't reflect what he believes at all, using his wife and mother as examples. >> there is no tougher job than being a mom. and when i think about what michelle's had to do, when i think about my own mom, a single mother raising me and my sister, that's work. >> president obama making a
2:15 am
historic trip to colombia as well. his weekend visit said to be the longest time a u.s. president has spents in the country. the president is attending the summit of americas, a gathering of leaders in north, central and south america. he's suspected to address the economy, trade, energy as well as regional security. and rick santorum is now revealing that money is one of the reasons he dropped out of the gop presidential race. he told fox news yesterday that his loss in wisconsin made it difficult to raise campaign cash. he also says that he has not discussed the possibility of endorsing any of the remaining candidates. and for an expanded look at all of our top stories, head to our blog cnn.com/earlystart. 15 minutes past the hour. frightening new research now revealing tornadoes are striking more parts of the u.s. and more often. that report says a so-called tornado alley is growing wider and it's more now like a tornado field.
2:16 am
tornadoes have typically threatened plain states like oklahoma kansas and nebraska, but researchers say recent storms confirm the midwest and deep south are also at risk. that's surprising there with the results. let's go to rob marciano live in atlanta. you could have told us that, right? >> yeah. we've known that for a while. we actually nicknamed the area through tennessee and alabama and mississippi dixie alley. it becomes so active. it's a little earlier in the season, little closer toward wintertime, but the bottom line is tornadoes there can be just as big and just as deadly. let's talk about the threat for tornadoes today across traditional tornado atly. you get into mid to late april, into may and june, this the area really that sets up almost day after day. it's a repetitive process because of a bunch of different things coming together a lot more often. today we have a short wave heading across the area, from kansas city to oklahoma city we have a slight risk of seeing thunderstorms that could produce large hail and damaging winds
2:17 am
and tornadoes. but looking ahead towards tomorrow and tomorrow afternoon the storms prediction center out of norman, oklahoma, has issued not only a moderate but a high risk. to do this two days in advance, this is serious business and it means that tomorrow tornado outbreak is likely, especially in the red and pink areas here, basically including the same area as today but a higher risk from oklahoma city up through wichita and central parts of kansas stretching into nebraska as well. so tomorrow is going to be a heads-up day for sure, potentially a deadly day if one of those tornadoes hits a small town. san francisco to los angeles is where the energy is coming out through tomorrow. that will eject into the plains and give us the threat for severe weather. east coast looks good today and through most of tomorrow. back to you. >> nicely done, thank you, rob. 17 minutes past 5:00 on the evaluate coast. that's the time that we like to get an early read on your local news making big headlines. this morning we have papers from everywhere. from new jersey all the way to california, let's start in"star
2:18 am
. he had us at hello, mayor of newark, new jersey. are you ready for his latest snielt hero. he saved the life of a hero trapped in the building next to his home. turns out he came home to find that her house was on fire. and what did he do? he raced right in and picked her up and carried her out of her bed. and he did it with, like, grave concern to himself, too. turns out he was actually injured. he was treated for smoke inhalation. then he tweeted about it said, thanks to all who are concerned. just suffering smoke inhalation. >> no biggie. >> no big whoop. we got the woman out of the house. we are both off to the hospital. i will be okay. by the way, if you're counting, it's not the first thyme cory booker has helped his constituents. here he is during the blizzard last december. he bounced around the city helping to shovel streets and helping snowed-in residents. did i say he had us at hello? >> got to love the guy.
2:19 am
if you're watching right now, call us. >> we've had him on a couple of times, good friend of the show. i'll make the prediction right now it won't be long until he runs for president. >> oh, yeah. >> he has great financial backers here in new york. it won't be long before he runs for president. >> he is definitely a people person. let's go to the san jose mercury news. i don't know how i feel about this one. california supreme court ruling employers in the state have no obligation to make sure lunch breaks are work-free. employers must provide uninterrupted meal and rest breaks, but they cannot be sued if employees choose to work through their breaks. the employer groups say the decision will derail future lawsuits over break times. worker reps say ruling is a strike against bosses who try to discourage breaks. i feel like we've done this all along, right? >> i don't remember the last time i had a lunch break, got to be honest. >> no, i agree, but you could take it if you wanted to. >> not even. >> oh, really? >> not in this business. are you kidding me? >> oh, i think you could if you
2:20 am
figured it out, right? i don't quite get this. i don't understand it. >> i hope they do figure it out, though. because to some that is critical, especially for moms racing home. 19 minutes now past 5:00. are you ready for this? a government agency giving out something they call the jackass award. you're welcome. the award that you paid for. more embarrassing details of waste at the gsa, the agency in charge of saving your taxpayer dollars. what on earth are they up to th this this? you'll find out. you're watching "early start." you just have to eat it as part of your heart healthy diet. step 1. eat the soup. all those veggies and beans, that's what may help lower your cholesterol and -- well that's easy [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup.
2:21 am
guys. come here, come here. [ telephone ringing ] i'm calling my old dealership. [ man ] may ford. hi, yeah. do you guys have any crossovers that offer better highway fuel economy than the chevy equinox? no, sorry, sir. we don't. oh, well, that's too bad. [ man ] kyle, is that you? [ laughs ] [ man ] still here, kyle. [ male announcer ] visit your local chevy dealer today. right now, very well qualified lessees can get a 2012 equinox ls for around $229 a month. who have used androgel 1%, there's big news. presenting androgel 1.62%. both are used to treat men with low testosterone.
2:22 am
androgel 1.62% is from the makers of the number one prescribed testosterone replacement therapy. it raises your testosterone levels, and... is concentrated, so you could use less gel. and with androgel 1.62%, you can save on your monthly prescription. [ male announcer ] dosing and application sites between these products differ. women and children should avoid contact with application sites. discontinue androgel and call your doctor if you see unexpected signs of early puberty in a child, or, signs in a woman which may include changes in body hair or a large increase in acne, possibly due to accidental exposure. men with breast cancer or who have or might have prostate cancer, and women who are, or may become pregnant or are breast feeding should not use androgel. serious side effects include worsening of an enlarged prostate, possible increased risk of prostate cancer, lower sperm count, swelling of ankles, feet, or body, enlarged or painful breasts, problems breathing during sleep, and blood clots in the legs. tell your doctor about your medical conditions and medications, especially insulin, corticosteroids, or medicines to decrease blood clotting.
2:23 am
talk to your doctor today about androgel 1.62% so you can use less gel. log on now to androgeloffer.com and you could pay as little as ten dollars a month for androgel 1.62%. what are you waiting for? this is big news. . 23 minutes past the hour. welcome back to "early start." new details continue to emerge showing the gsa scandal could be even bigger than you can possibly imagine. at first it was embarrassing videos of employees mucking government waste, a lavish las vegas conference and eight government workers disciplined.
2:24 am
>> if you think that's a lot, apparently it could be just the tip of a very large iceberg. alino cho is basically swamped with documents. this is it amazing. she's been following the story and has even more. you watch prime-time on cnn and you get a deluge of this it stuff and you've got to tune in again because there's even more this morning. >> i like to call it the gift that keeps on giving. honest to goodness. good morning, at the center of the latest allegation is something being referred to as the jackass award. it's a fake award that was allegedly created to justify spending on taxpayer money on dinner events for gsa employees. and apparently this happened not just once but repeatedly. remember, all of this started earlier this month when government inspectors revealed that the gsa spent more than $800,000 of taxpayer money on that four-day conference in las vegas in 2010. some of the expenditures included $4 shrimp, a clown and
2:25 am
a mind reader. now capitol hill newspaper roll call apparently has a transcript of an inspector general's investigation into gsa spending. in one exchange an employee says they used a loophole to invent the fake awards for an excuse to fund taxpayer-funded events at conferences. several times. some of these awards were apparently legitimate marking years of service. others not so much. take a look. that person said, quote, well, i just remember one year got like the jackass award or something for doing something stupid. that award got everybody food. this employee went on to say that, i mean, there were a bunch of thex. there were a bunch of goopy awards. >> you know, we were talking about this this morning because it is all the talk. my producer who was an intern not too long ago said, the interns got in on the action as well. >> oh, yes, they did. i mean, as i mentioned, the gift that keeps on giving. it really is unbelievable when you break it down and look at
2:26 am
all the separate components coming out. look at this. cnn has received documents from the house oversight kmooet from another inspector general review, including that in may of 2010 there was a five-day conference, you're right, zoraida, for interns at a resort in palm springs. some who attended reportedly stayed in suites. >> what? >> a congressional investigator said it was yearly and interns were flown in from across the country. the conference, like so many of the others, included a catered awards ceremony. in fact, one employee said, quote, i estimated out of my mind that they spent $100 a person on finger food. and if you're thinking this is some small conference at a small place in palm springs, you're wrong. it was a 120-intern event with 20 gsa employees and apparently, as you heard, this didn't happen just once but several times. >> i wonder if any of those interns actually ended up getting hired? i mean, was it worth it to spend
2:27 am
the money? >> let's hope, right? >> 120 interns flown in from across the country. >> they do work hard, interns, but, oh, my goodness. >> we know, it's a thankless job, right? >> yeah. >> i think the bigger issue is the -- one of the gifts that we got yesterday -- again, this is the gift because it's just so unbelievable you can't believe you're reporting on it -- are these costs incurred for things that really shouldn't cost so much. >> right. we're talking about relocation, right? >> yes. >> pretty unbelievable. it really only gets better. cnn's dana bash has learned that one government worker was paid more than $300,000 by the federal government to relocate from denver to hawaii and then, quote, stayed on for just one year and quit. now, that is it according to a triptd of a gsa inspector general interview with an event planner. where did all of this money go? apparently to a house-hunting trip, rent for temporary quarters for up to 90 days, one vehicle shipped to hawaii, and
2:28 am
grocery and laundry expenses. in fact, in one exchange that event planner was asked how much the gsa spent on relocation. oh, millions, quote. how many employees are we talking about? i'd say right now probably about 15 files on my desk. now, we should note that it is unclear from the transcript whether the government was actually reimbursed for any of that relocation money. but nonetheless none of it -- >> that isn't important. >> it is an important point. and we are looking into that. but, remember, there's been tremendous fallout from this. the head of the gsa, martha johnson, stepped down, as did seven others. they were either fired or suspended. and so this is -- >> it started with $800,000. >> yes. >> keeps getting bigger. >> thank you, alina. >> keep going. come back next hour. 28 minutes past the hour. still ahead on "early start," jon george zimmerman in the flesh in court to answer murder charges. we'll talk to a former florida
2:29 am
district attorney about the case in the trayvon martin shooting. you are watching "early start." l and who ordered the yummy cereal? yummy. [ woman ] lower cholesterol. [ man 2 ] yummy. i got that wrong didn't i? [ male announcer ] want great taste and whole grain oats that can help lower cholesterol? honey nut cheerios. that can help lower cholesterol? when we got married. i had three kids. and she became the full time mother of three. it was soccer, and ballet, and cheerleading, and baseball. those years were crazy. so, as we go into this next phase, you know, a big part of it for us is that there isn't anything on the schedule.
2:30 am
2:31 am
2:32 am
welcome back. 32 minutes past the hour. i'm zoraida sambolin. >> i'm ashleigh banfield. nice to have you with us. time to look at the top stories in the headlines. george zimmerman making a first videoconference in court to answer second-degree murder charges. the prosecutors in court papers say zimmerman profiled 17-year-old trayvon martin, alleging he stocked him down before he shot and killed him. a provocative act.
2:33 am
that's what the president is calling north korea's attempt to launch a long-range rocket, even though that rocket was a dud. north korea basically strdroppi $1 billion into the ocean when it can't even feed its own people. united nations security council will talk about that move later today. a bad breakup that turned into a deadly shootout. at a cracker barrel in ohio, a man killed a woman and a girl before he was gunned down. president obama heading to colombia for the summit of the americas. but on his way he'll stop in the key swing state of florida. he'll be in tampa, site of the 2012 republican convention, pushing the importance of a trade ahead of that summit. george zimmerman will wake up this morning in administrative confinement. that is separated from the general prison population for his own safety. no move so far on the bond hearing, we understand. at a brief court appearance yesterday, zimmerman's arraignment was set for may
2:34 am
29th. in the affidavit that led to zimmerman's arrest, prosecutors say he profiled trayvon martin before confronting him and then shooting him in the chest. the document also says trayvon's mother, quote, reviewed the 911 calls and identified the voice crying for help as trayvon martin's voice. last night sibrina fulton told anderson cooper she has no doubt zimmerman was the aggressor. >> i think it was deliberate. he got out of that vehicle with the intent to shoot and kpil il son. that's what i believe. that's what i said from the start, that he chased my son down like an animal, and he killed him. >> so what does this all mean for the murder case against zimmerman? defense attorney phyllis co-te'i joins us from miami. she is a former florida state attorney and a judge. very nice to have you this morning. so you have looked at this affidavit. what can we learn from it? >> well, i think what we learn from it is exactly what the state is going to ining to be d
2:35 am
on to prove their charge, certainly that this was a deliberate act on the part of george zimmerman, that he profiled trayvon martin without good cause and using that profiling as that act that then becomes reckless or reckless disregard or depraved mind. >> we see that his mother says it was trayvon's voice on the tape. you know, there's been a lot of speculation as to whether that is the case or not. there have been some experts who have weighed in. how much weight does it carry that his mother says that? >> you know, i think it's going to carry the weight of a mother and certainly the emotional weight of a mother listening to the last voice or words of her son. but i think you will have the testimony of any sort of scientific evidence that may refute that as well because certainly it's not a conversation where you actually are hearing the person talking or speaking into the microphone. i think there may be some issue in terms of what one is able to hear.
2:36 am
>> phyllis, i want to hear part of what they describe that zimmerman actually did. martin was on his way back to the townhouse where he was living when he was profiled by george zimmerman. martin was unarmed and was not committing a crime. will the matter of profiling be a big factor in proving a murder case? >> i mean, certainly sounds like it's going to be because, remember, one of the things that they're going to have to prove is certainly not that this was first-degree murder but that the act itself that was done by george zimmerman was so reckless that it shows a depraved mind. so that this act of profiling, probably based on the affidavit, will become the key for the prosecutors in this case. >> what about the stand your ground defense we've talked about so much? where does that stand? >> you know, the stand your ground defense will still be available, and we don't know exactly where we will hear it or how the attorneys will decide to have this evidence dealt with. i mean, certainly there can be a motion for a stand your ground hearing before the case actually
2:37 am
reaches trial. but even if defense attorneys are unsuccessful with that stand your ground defense during or before trial, they still will be able to insert it during trial. so we may see it a couple of price places. >> i want to talk about another revealing part of the affidavit. it reveals a controversy over the 911 tape, specifically which words zimmerman actually said. so listen to this part. >> we've heard that a lot. the prosecutor's version is this. while talking about martin, zimmerman stated these blank holes, they always get away and also said these f'ing punks. they're not asserting he used a racial slur here. how does that affect the case? we talked a lot about perhaps federal hate crimes charged against him as well. >> you know, i always thought that would be a difficult avenue
2:38 am
in term of a hate crime. but i think what becomes obvious when you look at the words they're looking at here is this was an individual intent on not letting someone get away. so there will be those actions of these blank holes and they're always getting away or they're getting away. and even after being told not to pursue, that pursuit by george zimmerman that appears to be key for the prosecutors. >> and another issue here, the charge of second-degree murder. when we talked to you yesterday you said there's a high proof required for that. so now we know zimmerman goes before a judge for a hearing. is there any possibility here that the charges would be dropped? >> well, i mean, certainly the defense attorneys should look at the evidence and may, in fact, file a motion to dismiss. with the case being dropped because of the stand your ground defense. i mean, certainly that is a possibility. >> and my last question to you -- the judge assigned to the case, her name is jessica rock seigler. she's only been on the bench a
2:39 am
little over a year, i understand. what do you know about her? >> i don't know anything about her, but what i do know about, because i was the associate dean of our florida judicial college is florida that's an extensive training program for their new judges. she's been on the bench for 16 months. she's gone through extensive training if not through the actual experience, through simulated experiences of how to handle a case and what is proper. i'm told for all intents and purposes she's a very bright judge and a very good judge in terms of what she's done so far. >> phyllis kotey, always nice to have you. i almost want to be a student in your classroom, i have to tell you. you break it down so well. thanks a lot. >> thank you. >> i want to be a student. i always want to be. >> she's a little far away to be going every day, but i would love, love to do that. >> i kind of like florida, too. 39 minutes past 5:00. up next, a dud that is still making a lot of noise. north korea's big hyped-up rocket launch turns out to be, uh, not so much.
2:40 am
it sure got our attention in the united states. the u.n. is meeting about it today? what does it mean about north korea's ability to strike the united states or its neighbors? you'll find out. you're watching "early start." [ jennifer garner ] there's a lot of beautiful makeup out there. but one is so clever that your skin looks better even after you take it off. neutrogena® healthy skin liquid makeup. 98% saw improved skin. does your makeup do that? neutrogena® cosmetics. in that time there've been some good days. and some difficult ones. but, through it all, we've persevered, supporting some of the biggest ideas in modern history. so why should our anniversary matter to you? because for 200 years, we've been helping ideas move from ambition to achievement. and the next great idea could be yours. ♪
2:41 am
[ female announcer ] introducing new nature valley protein bars. 100% natural ingredients like roasted peanuts... ♪ ...creamy peanut butter, and a rich dark chocolate flavor. plus, 10 grams of great tasting protein in every bar. so it's energy straight from nature to you. new nature valley protein bars. find them in the granola bar aisle. ♪ why do you whisper, green grass? ♪ [ all ] shh! ♪ why tell the trees what ain't so? ♪ [ male announcer ] dow solutions use vibration reduction technology to help reduce track noise so trains move quieter
2:42 am
through urban areas all over the world. together, the elements of science and the human element can solve anything. [ all ] shh! [ male announcer ] solutionism. the new optimism. in here, great food demands a great presentation. so at&t showed corporate caterers how to better collaborate by using a mobile solution, in a whole new way. using real-time photo sharing abilities, they can create and maintain high standards, from kitchen to table. this technology allows us to collaborate with our drivers to make a better experience for our customers. [ male announcer ] it's a network of possibilities -- helping you do what you do... even better. ♪ but when she got asthma, all i could do was worry ! specialists, lots of doctors, lots of advice... and my hands were full. i couldn't sort through it all. with unitedhealthcare, it's different. we have access to great specialists, and our pediatrician gets all the information. everyone works as a team.
2:43 am
and i only need to talk to one person about her care. we're more than 78,000 people looking out for 70 million americans. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. recksiedler. ignoring international pressure, north korea launched a long-range rocket this morning, but it broke apart before even reaching orbit. so the rocket flew for more than a minute, got up to an altitude of 400,000 feet, but then it broke up and fell into international waters. north korea claims it was attempting to put a weather satellite into orbit, but a lot of nations, including the united states, say that the north koreans instead were attempting to develop a missile that could strike the united states. an icbm. the white house has called the move, a quote provocative action that threatens regional security, violates international
2:44 am
law and contravenes its own recent commitments. the administration also announced that in the wake of north korea's defiance food aid we had planned to send to north korea will not happen. today the u.n. security council is meeting to discuss a response to north korea's actions as well. joining me to talk about this is retired army general spyder marks, also the senior intelligence officer in korea forred combined forces in command. there is no one better to talk about this than you. right off the bat, the failure of this rocket, some call it rocket, some missile, the failure, does it tell us anything about their capacity and about how far they've come in their program? >> well, ashleigh, what it tells you is north korea remains a regional threat. if they had been able to get this missile into orbit, extra-atmospheric in its launch and ta limb tri-data, it would be a far different problem.
2:45 am
is it is a nuclear power. they've got three to five bombs it's marrying that technology into the capacity to launch it out of the region and to threaten folks almost anywhere. that's not the case right 0 now because they haven't been able to demonstrate they can produce a capacity that can move that nuclear capability, that nuclear threat, someplace else. so they remain this morning where they were a day ago, which is a very vitriolic, very isolated, the hermit kingdom, dog essentially what they want to do and remaining very much a regional tletd b aal threat but international threat except six nations are very much part of this discussion. >> the layperson looks at this and says, big failure, you're probably nowhere better than you were in your last launch attempt, which was in '09. but i hearken back to our space program, nasa had some disasters but a global force to be rec
2:46 am
nlenned with. some of the moests elite aft ma naughts in the world. i look at our floours and space explosions and i wonder if this is a blip or if it truly does signal they're kind of really nowhere they need to be at this point, if that's what they want to be. >> well, they have the ambition to be more than what they have dmron straighted they are right 0 now. understand that the north korean philosophy that has driven their existence for the last 60-plus years is the notion of total self-relianc self-reliance. however, north korea has incredibly strong relationships with china. they walk -- beijing walks a very fine line between its relationships with pyongyang and relationships elsewhere in the region, seoul and in tokyo, and clearly with the united states. and china understands that its role is extremely important vis-a-vis north korea and north korea knows that as well. north korea also understands, ashleigh, they have a complete
2:47 am
pass. they can get away with almost anything they want. i guarantee you the united states is going to continue to give food aid, anything else they can do, to try to reduce the suffering of the north korean people. >> because it seems that punishing the people and withholding food aid doesn't seem to matter to the leadership in north korea. but let me ask you this. oftentimes we go to barbara starr and her reporting from the pentagon is it top-notch, we see these satellite photos that give us some indication of what the north koreans are up to. and i always wonder just how much is that intel? is that the tip of the iceberg? are we great at this? do we have a good handle on exactly what they're doing? or do we have any dirty intelligence on the ground? >> the real issue with north korea is we have not been able to effectively penetrate on the ground what's taking place. it is completely isolated. our collection capabilities on north korea are quite extensive. we do have human intelligence. it's very sporadic. it's not very deep. so we get snippets and insights in terms of how decisions are
2:48 am
made and what the life and conditions are like on the ground. in fact, we can draw some pretty good conclusions. the challenge that we have is that most of our collection in korea is all technical. it's done from overhead systems, done from offshore. so we have what i would call a partial understanding of what really takes place in north korea. clearly we have a picture of what the suffering looks like for the people. but that is such an isolated regime, and until they raise their hands and say, you know, we want to change our behavior, there's very little that any international body can do to influence that. influence campaigns are exceptionally difficult to try to get started in north korea. we've tried for years and we don't have a lot of success. so it becomes an issue of containment. let's not let this thing get too far out of control and let it grow and become a major problem that we're now going to have to deal with, which would have been the case had they been able to get this bad boy into space. >> it's great to talk to you, spider, as always. hope you stick around for our next hour as well.
2:49 am
>> thbs, ashleigh. it is 48 minutes past the hour. time to check the stories that are making news this morning. it lasted just minutes. george zimmerman's first appearance on charges of second-degree murder in the trayvon martin shooting. the prosecution's probable cause affidavit suggests zimmerman profiled martin, chasing him down, confronting him, and eventually killing the teenager. police in suburban cleveland investigating a deadly shooting at a cracker barrel restaurant last night. two people, a woman and a young girl, were killed, and another girl was wounded. the gunman was killed, police say, after he refused to surrender. he apparently became distraught after being told by his wife that she was leaving him. in new developments this morning, in an armed standoff in new hampshire, authorities in greenland now saying two suspects have been found dead. police believe they died in either a murder/suicide or a double suicide. the man and a woman are connected to an earlier shootout with police that killed one
2:50 am
officer and injured four others. the town's police department has only ten members. newark, new jersey mayor cory booker taken to the hospital last night after he acted like superman and saved a woman from her burning home. booker said he came home to find his neighbor's house in flames. a woman was trapped inside. booker said he raced in, grabd her out of bed, carried her out. booker was later treated for smoke inhalation. he tweeted about it, saying, quote, thanks to all who are concerned. just suffering smoke inhalation. we got the woman out of the house. we are both off to the hospital. i will be okay. happy to hear that. ashleigh? >> do you love that he says, just suffering from smiek inhalation. no big deal. cory booker! it's 50 minutes past 5:00 on the east coast. still ahead, trouble in candyland. why mike and ike are splitting up. where is the hot small le tamal?
2:51 am
all of this? what's the story behind this, really? you're watching "early start". of us. how can we save these young people's lives? as a police chief i have an opportunity to affect what happens in a major city. i learned early on if you want to make a difference you have to have the right education. university of phoenix opened the door. my name is james craig, i'm committed to making a difference and i am a phoenix.
2:52 am
2:53 am
. tricky. it's tricky. >> this is tricky, actually. >> 53 minutes past 5:00 on the -- what coast are we on? east coast. >> we're on the east coast, yes. >> we like to look at what's
2:54 am
trending on the interweb around this time. it looks like the relationship went zour. you're supposed to know what that means. >> this makes me sad. >> it's adorable, isn't it? if you're going to a candy store and it looks like a magic marker scribbled out mike or ike. it turns out they're getting a divorce. i'm not kidding. the boxes are hitting the shelves with either mike or ike scribbled out. it's not the work of some crazy person. it's actually a campaign that's coming from the elevator group. if you're wondering who the elevator group, it's an advertising company apparently thought it could boost sales by announcing a same-sex breakup. mike apparently is leaving ike to pursue a musica rear and ike wants to focus on his art. mike also claiming that ike was loafing around too much and playing words with friends too often and posted this on his tumblr blog. >> no way! >> heard about ike and me splitting up? yeah, it's true. we just don't agree on the candy. my red, his red, my lime, his
2:55 am
lime, my box ideas, his box ideas. so over it. anyway, that's that. mike and ike, splitting up p. so what do you do when you fall to number three for the first time in the fast food race? you add more bacon. >> oh, yeah. good one. >> burger king apparently now testing out a new dessert. seriously, a bacon sundae. i tweeted about this this morning. it's your basic ice cream sundae, sprinkled with chopped nuts and bacon bits. >> so not kosher. >> only in some markets right now. someone in nashville got a picture of it, posted it online. >> i feel like that has to be a joke. really, bacon san dae? >> yeah. if you have tried it, let us know. >> crew? >> sweet and salty. >> again, they're asleep. guys, wake up. we're having a show here.
2:56 am
get with the program. would you try it? >> yeah, i think i'd try it. i think i'd try it. i don't think i'd like it, though. >> that teeny body taking a bacon sundae? creating a fake jackass award to be able to party. the gsa scandal growing this morning. we've got even more to tell you about. you're watching "early start." [ man ] ring ring... progresso this reduced sodium soup says it may help lower cholesterol, how does it work? you just have to eat it as part of your heart healthy diet. step 1. eat the soup.
2:57 am
all those veggies and beans, that's what may help lower your cholesterol and -- well that's easy [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. blast of cold feels nice. why don't you use bengay zero degrees? it's the one you store in the freezer. same medicated pain reliever used by physical therapists. that's chilly. [ male announcer ] new bengay zero degrees. freeze and move on.
2:58 am
2:59 am
i'm just saying. >> i'm just saying. it is just a hair before 6:00 a.m. we want an early jump for "early start." good morning. i'm ashleigh banfield. >> i'm zoraida sambolin.
3:00 am
after weeks in hiding, george zimmerman made his first courtroom appearance for the shooting of 17-year-old trayvon martin, prosecutors outlying their murder case saying the neighborhood watch volunteer followed the unarmed teenager after a police dispatcher told him to back off. and pyongyang may just have a problem. north korea firing another dud. deposited a long range rocket right smack dab into the ocean. the damage is done anyway. united nations security council plans to talk about the north korean threat today. president obama defending his likely opponent's wife and all other stay-at-home moms. >> there's no tougher job than being a mom. that's work. >> i guess all working moms. the president trying to get far away from a democratic strategist comment that ann romney never worked a day in her life. and a government agency using your money to reward a
3:01 am
jackass. not kidding, their words, not ours. the gsa, the gift that keeps on giving. >> we should put that in quotes. a second night behind bars for george zimmerman, and that's where he'll stay for the foreseeable future. zimmerman made his first court appearance yesterday as the prosecution laid out their case against the man accused of murdering 17-year-old trayvon martin. >> mr. zimmerman? >> yes, sir. >> you're appearing here for your first appearance at this time for a charge of murder in the second degree, and you are represented by mr. o'mara, is that true? >> yes, sir. >> the affidavit alleges zimmerman followed a teenager and disregarded the police dispatcher's request not to follow him. zimmerman claims the shooting was self-defense. attorney mark o'mara says his client is worried about getting a fair trial in sanford, florida. >> he is very concerned concerned about the way he has been portrayed and the way this
3:02 am
case has seemingly gotten almost out of control. he doesn't quite understand it. he doesn't understand why people view him in a way that he perceives to be so different than his reality. >> cnn's anderson cooper talked to trayvon martin's family about watching zimmerman in court. >> what is that like to see it? this is something you've been wanting for so long ever since your son was killed. >> it actually helps a little to see that the person that shot and killed trayvon will be held accountable for what he has done. >> zimmerman will remain in custody until his formal arraignment. that is scheduled for may 29th. cnn's martin savidge is live in sanford, florida. so many developments yesterday, martin. it looks like zimmerman's lawyer is trying to humanize him. can you talk a little bit about that. >> reporter: he is indeed, no question about it. this is a person whose face has been out there for so long and who has been accuseded, at least
3:03 am
by one side, of murdering a young man of 17 who was totally unarmed. one of the interesting things, as we get a look at the probable cause affidavit -- and what's fascinating to me is that you basically now have had two different entities of law enforcement look at the same event and come up with completely opposite points of view. the sanford police department on february 26th basically said that george zimmerman acted in self-defense and that the stand your ground law applied to him and that he shouldn't be arrested. the state attorney's office looks at it and says, no, it's completely the opposite of that, and they basically have determined that george zimmerman, well, profiled and then pursued and then frightened and then eventually shot and killed 17-year-old trayvon martin. that is the account trayvon martin's family has maintained pretty much all along. they seem to, the state does, play down anything that george zimmerman claimed, which is he stopped following trayvon martin, that he actually walked back to his car when martin
3:04 am
approached him, punched him in the nose, and began the life and death struggle. the cry for help that so many 911 callers heard, that was trayvon martin. so last night, appearing on cnn, the attorney for george zimmerman basically said his client is terrified. >> i think that type of trauma being involved in a situation where someone passed away carries with it a lot of stress, and, of course, he's facing second degree murder charges and a potential life sentence. i think, if any of us had that going on, there would be an enormous amount of stress. >> reporter: he is essentially realizing the deep trouble that he is in. zoraida? >> martin savidge live in sanford, florida, for us. thank you. it is now four minutes past 6:00 a.m. on the east coast. after all of the chutzbah and all the rest, turns out the thing was a dud. north korea making good on its threat to fire a long range rocket, only it broke up after launch and ended up in the ocean.
3:05 am
so no matter how embarrassing it is, it is considered an escalation nonetheless. here's u.s. ambassador bill richardson, who visited north korea several times, on piers morgan last night. >> i wouldn't want to be the head of north korea's space agency right now. it is a failure. there's obviously a gap in the technology. the ballistic technology of north korea. i do believe it was a cover, this launch, for ballistic missile technology, long range military purposes, but it's a failure. >> it's a failure. you heard him. cnn's elise is with us this morning. but it was an attempt. intransindigence is a whole other kettle of fish. >> what u.s. officials are concerned about is not the launch itself, but that north
3:06 am
korea continues to test this missile technology. as you said, every time it tests, it learns. u.s. space program wasn't all that wonderful when it started, but now look at it. they don't want north korea to keep making these provocations, making these tests, and they're also worried now about a nuclear test. north korea is famous for that one-two punch. and so now they're looking, north korea trying to compensate for the fact that that missile failed to possibly do a nuclear test sometime in the coming weeks. >> so tell me about the reactions from the chinese. as i recall, this launch pad is fairly close to the chinese border. the chinese are the closest allies of the north koreans. are they reacting to this mess-up? >> right now china is saying, well, everyone should remain calm, no tension, no provocations. what china is really worried about right now is that perhaps this young leader, kim jong-moon is a little vulnerable right now
3:07 am
and doesn't want the international community to press him any further. i think you're going to see pressure on the united states to put pressure on north korea to stop these type of actions, these type of provocations. the u.s. came out with a kind of bland statement last night, saying this was a provocative action in violation of north korea's commitments but saying that the president was prepared to engage with north korea. so i think, if they're going to do that, china is really key here. they want china to put the screws to north korea and say, listen, you can't do this anymore. >> good luck with that. elise labott, always good to see you. democratic strategist hilary rosen has now apologized for saying ann romney never worked a day in her life. the remark about a stay-at-home mother of five angered republicans and had aides in the white house doing a rebuff. president obama said that does not reflect what he believes at all, using his wife and mother as examples.
3:08 am
>> there is no tougher job than being a mom. when i think about what michelle's had to do, when i think about my own mom, a single mother raising me and my sister, that's work. >> it's seven minutes now past 6:00. if you didn't hear this story, you've got to hear this story. newark mayor cory booker, he went to the hospital last night, but not before saving the life of his neighbor. there he is, superman to the rescue. how he ended up in her burning home and how today he's being hailed as the hero. and a new report says tornadoes are threatening more parts of the united states and far more often. and they were partying it up in vegas, serious style. but now a government agency is being outed with something even worse, a jackass award. their words, not ours. you paid for it, folks.
3:09 am
more embarrassing details of the waste of the gsa. ♪ [ acoustic guitar: slow ] [ sighs ] [ announcer ] all work and no play... will make brady miss his favorite part of the day. ♪ [ upbeat ] [ barking ] [ whines ] that's why there's beneful playful life, made with energy-packed wholesome grains... and real beef and egg. to help you put more play in your day. beneful. play. it's good for you. or creates another laptop bag or hires another employee, it's not just good for business, it's good for the entire community.
3:10 am
at bank of america, we know the impact that local businesses have on communities. that's why we extended $6.4 billion in new credit to small businesses across the country last year. because the more we help them, the more we help make opportunity possible. in here, the landscaping business grows with snow. to keep big winter jobs on track, at&t provided a mobile solution that lets everyone from field workers to accounting, initiate, bill, and track work in real time. you can't live under a dome in minnesota, that's why there's guys like me. [ male announcer ] it's a network of possibilities -- helping you do what you do... even better. ♪ are you guys okay? yeah. ♪ [ man ] i had a great time. thank you, it was really fun. ♪
3:11 am
[ crash ] i'm going to write down my number, but don't use it. [ laughing ] ♪ [ engine turns over ] [ male announcer ] the all-new subaru impreza®. experience love that lasts. ♪ and then treats day after day... well, shoot, that's like checking on your burgers after they're burnt! [ male announcer ] treat your frequent heartburn by blocking the acid with prilosec otc. and don't get heartburn in the first place! [ male announcer ] one pill a day. 24 hours. zero heartburn.
3:12 am
11 minutes past 6:00 on the east coast. time to check the stories making news. here's where we start. the road to the prosecution in the trayvon martin killing. george zimmerman made his first appearance yesterday to answer second degree murder charges. zimmerman claims it was self-defense, but the state's probable cause affidavit is alleging a lot of things, among them, profiling martin before confronting him and murdering him. north korea launching a long range rocket, but it broke apart in flight, and it didn't get much of a flight either. the u.n. security council will discuss the launch today. the obama administration says the united states will no longer provide food aid to north korea. new developments this morning in an armed standoff in new hampshire.
3:13 am
authorities in greenland, new hampshire, now saying two suspects have been found dead. police believe they died either in a murder/suicide or a double suicide. the man and the woman are connected to an earlier shootout with police that killed one officer and injured four others. a deadly shooting at a cracker barrel restaurant in brooklyn, ohio, a suburb of cleveland. police say a gunman opened fire, killing two people, wounding the third. he was shot dead himself by police after refusing to surrender outside of that restaurant. president obama making a historic trip to colombia. his weekend visit will be the longest time a u.s. president has spent in that country. the president is attending the summit of the americas, a gathering of leaders in north, central, and south america. he's expected to address the economy, trade, energy, and regional security. frightening new research revealing that tornadoes will strike more often.
3:14 am
you knew this. reports say a tornado alley is growing wider, and it's growing more like a tornado field. tornadoes have threatened plains states like oklahoma, kansas, nebraska. researchers say recent storms confirm the midwest and deep south are also at risk. here's how the story of the day. newark, new jersey mayor cory booker taken to the hospital last night after he saved a woman from her burning home. booker said he came home to find a neighbor's house in flames. a woman was trapped inside. so what did he do? he raced in, grabbed her out of bed, and carried her out. booker was later treated for smoke inhalation. he actually tweeted about this as well. saying, "thanks to all who are concerned, just suffering smoke inhalation. we got the woman out of the house. we are both off to the hospital. i will be okay." humble dude. >> what a guy. >> for an expanded look at all our top stories, head to our blog, cnn.com/earlystart. 14 minutes past 6:00 on the
3:15 am
east coast. know that song, reunited? ♪ and it feels so good >> wow, you just pulled an obama on me. take a look at that. isn't that pretty? an ohio woman certainly knows the feeling about reunited because sewer workers in the city of tuna found her wedding ring 18 months after she accidentally flushed it down the toilet. >> i'm so ecstatic. i don't even know what to say it's so exciting. i just want to jump and scream. and what makes it even more special is my husband and i are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary in june. to have this ring back that's a symbol of our 25 years together, it's the best feeling ever. >> i hope she had a little bleach on hand, right? >> i'm so happy for her. i can't even go there. that is so fantastic. >> and it is proof that miracles can happen, folks. 18 months. >> that is beautiful. 15 minutes past the hour. where is maury povich when you need him?
3:16 am
paternity tests are coming back to find out who impregnated teresa. teresa is a female chimp living in a retirement community for older chimps in louisiana. apparently, all the male chimps that are living around her had vasectomies, folks. so they suspect the father is a chimp named conan, who has fathered two other chimps despite being snipped two times. >> you're kidding? >> nope. >> conan has been vasectomized twice, and i have since re-vasectomized the group, and i have the daunting task of doing it to all the males in the colony. >> i just did the worst thing possible. i said i hope it's a chimp. >> vasectomized. i never heard that before. i didn't know you could make a verb. that is definitely an anomalous situation. >> her word of the day. >> thank you. finally, you have awakened, my crew, my friends.
3:17 am
word of the day. 16 minutes now past 6:00. ahead on "early start," the man who killed trayvon martin finally faces the judge. the court session was brief, by video, but it did provide some key details, allegations anyway, about the case against george zimmerman. and also still ahead, another embarrassment by the gsa. the agency using taxpayer money, your money to congratulate a so-called, quote, jackass. ica'ss and here's what we did today: supported nearly 3 million steady jobs across our country... ... scientists, technicians, engineers, machinists... ... adding nearly 400 billion dollars to our economy... we're at work providing power to almost a quarter of our homes and businesses... ... and giving us cleaner rides to work and school... and tomorrow, we could do even more. cleaner, domestic, abundant and creating jobs now. we're america's natural gas. the smarter power, today. learn more at anga.us.
3:18 am
[ female announcer ] end the struggle with weak, damaged hair with new aveeno nourish+ strengthen. it nurtures hair back to strong, healthy life. our exclusive active naturals wheat protein formula works with your hair, targeting damage, restoring strength and resilience for up to 90% less breakage in just three washes. find peace with your hair. [ female announcer ] and discover strong, healthy hair with life. new nourish+ strengthen, from the nourish+ hair care collection. only from aveeno.
3:19 am
3:20 am
3:21 am
good morning to you. new details are starting to emerge showing the gsa scandal could be even bigger and messier than you could imagine. employees with government waste, and eight government workers were being disciplined were the headlines. it could actually be the tip of a very large iceberg. alina cho deluged with paperwork, following all the elements of the story. really, you're buried in all of these details. >> what are you calling it, the gift that keeps on giving? >> to journalists anyway. >> what's most extraordinary about this is the center of the latest allegation is something being referred to as the jackass award. a fake award allegedly created to justify spending taxpayer money at dinner events at conferences for gsa employees. apparently, this didn't happen just once, it happened repeatedly. remember all of this started early in april when government inspectors revealed the gsa spent more than $800,000 of your money, taxpayer dollars, on this
3:22 am
four-day conference in vegas back in 2010. some of the expenditures included $4 shrimp, a clown, and a mind reader. now the capitol hill newspaper "roll call" has a transcript of an investigation into gsa spending. in one exchange, the employee said they used a loophole to create fake awards as an excuse to have dinner events at conferences. some legitimate, marking years of service. others, not so much. and one employee said, quote, i just remember one year like someone got like the jackass award or something for doing something stupid. the jackass award got everybody food. it wasn't just one goofy award. it was many goofy awards, and this was a way to justify spending money on dinners. >> and they spent money on insurance. interns. they got in on it as well. >> being an intern is a
3:23 am
thankless job, but it's a little excessive. >> cnn has actually received documents from a house oversight committee from another inspector general interview. it shows that in may of 2010 there was indeed a five-day conference for interns at a palm springs resort. some people who attended reportedly stayed in suites. a congressional investigator said this was a yearly event and that interns were flown in from across the country, and the conference, like so many others involving the gsa, involved a catered awards ceremony. in fact, one employee said, "i estimated out of my mind that they spent $100 a person on finger food." in fact, the documents go on to say, not only $100 a person but a total of about $146,500 on sumptuous buffets and beverages. >> for interns. >> for interns. >> again, not to minimize the work of interns, it's extraordinary at times. this is an investment you're making oftentimes in employees
3:24 am
off of conferences, and interns are temporary. >> 120 interns at least at that event with 20 gsa employees who were also there. >> i would love to know how many of those 120 interns ended up becoming employees at gsa, meaning the investment paid off. >> that would be interesting. >> what about the incredible report of the money they spent to move some of their people in the gsa. >> this part of it was as surprising to me of the videos that have surfaced. it really only does get better. our dana bash learned that one government worker was paid more than $300,000 by the federal government to relocate from denver to hawaii, $300,000. then, quote, stayed on for just the one year and then quit. that is according to a transcript of a gsa inspector general interview with an event planner. where did all of that money go, the $300,000? a house hunting trip, rent for temporary quarters for up to 90 days, one vehicle shipped to hawaii, and grocery and laundry expenses. in one exchange, the planner was
3:25 am
asked how much the gsa spent on relocation. oh, millions, that person said. how many employees are we talking about? i'd say right now probably about 15 files on my desk. one important note, unclear from the transcript, whether the government was reimbursed for any of that relocation money. ashleigh, as you pointed out earlier, that is an important point. if the government was reimbursed, at least that component not as big of a story. but nonetheless. >> i just want to know how they flew that employee to hawaii. did they get the concorde back in service? holy cow. >> one of the most interesting parts is the government apparently picked up the tab for closing costs on a home purchase. if the person relocating can't sell the house, they will buy it and resell it as well. >> that's why that number was so high because it was extraordinarily high. alina cho, thank you so much. >> it's 25 minutes past 6:00 on the east coast. coming up on "early start," george zimmerman is out of hiding, into jail, and out of
3:26 am
court. prosecution has highlighted its case, a few details. there are two legal experts who know what that might tell us about where the case is going. new insight into what caused a deadly stage collapse at the indiana state fair back in 2010. a new statement from sugarland, the band at the center of all of that controversy. i'm angelina paglia, and i'm a professional pool player. i travel around the world playing pool tournaments. i would say i play 14, 15 major tournaments a year. if there aren't any major women's tournaments, i certainly will jump in with the men. i have no problem with that. not only do i travel as a professional player, but i really do like to be involved in charity. this shot is called the evel knievel shot. we do a lot of exhibitions to raise money.
3:27 am
they'll charge $10 to be able to play a game of pool. when do you get a chance to play a professional? for such a great cause. i normally always travel by plane. we have to check our pool cues because they're considered a dangerous weapon. we worry about checking our pool cues for safety and damage. sometimes if i'm going to a place that's really far away, i will actually federal express by cues. that's how a pool player travels. thanks for watching.
3:28 am
3:29 am
3:30 am
it is 30 minutes past the hour. on the east coast, that means 6:30. welcome back to "early start." i'm ashleigh banfield. >> and i'm zoraida sambolin. it's time to check the stories making news. george zimmerman making his first court appearance to answer second degree murder charges. prosecutors in court papers say zimmerman profiled 17-year-old trayvon martin, stalked him down before he shot and killed him. a provocative act, that's what president obama is calling north korea's attempt to launch a long range rocket, even though
3:31 am
it was a dud. north korea basically dropping $1 billion in the ocean while it can't feed its people. the u.n. security council will be talking about that move today. and updating a developing story for you. a tragic all night armed standoff in greenland, new hampshire, is now over. police saying two suspects were found dead inside a home. earlier, a gunman shot and killed the police chief and wounded four officers. newark, new jersey mayor cory booker, already a rising star in political ranks, now being called a super hero after he ran into a burning home to help save a woman. he was hospitalized, and we will have an update on his condition. george zimmerman will remain in isolation in seminole county in a jail cell for the time being. there's been no move so far towards a bond hearing to get him out. at a brief court appearance yesterday, zimmerman's arraignment was set for may 29th. no plea entered in this either.
3:32 am
in the affidavit that led to zimmerman's arrest, prosecutors are stating that he, quote, profile the teenager before shooting him. the court documents also say that "trayvon martin's mother has reviewed the 911 calls and identified the voice crying for help as trayvon martin's voice." she told anderson cooper she has no doubt that zimmerman was the aggressor. >> i think it was deliberate. he got out of that vehicle with the intent to shoot and kill my son. that's what i believed from the start, that he chased my son down like an animal, and he killed him. >> those are the words of the mother of the victim and the words of the prosecutor. but what does it all mean with regard to the case against zimmerman? jany weintraub is a criminal defense attorney in florida. beth karas is correspondent for trutv and one smart legal cookie, i might add.
3:33 am
t thank you for joining me. "new york post" profiling how much this is a cross-country story right now. the allegations that came out in this affidavit are quite serious, and they're very specific. everybody has to realize these are allegations. is there anything that leads you to think that the prosecutor has some additional evidence that we don't know about yet? >> well, they definitely have additional evidence. in the autopsy report, it's going to be very crucial to both sides to find out how close they were when that gun went off, and that will be identified through forensic examinations. >> let me read for you one thing that really -- there are a lot of things that stood out in this affidavit. one in particular that stood out was a quote that said, "later while talking about martin, zimmerman stated, these blank holes, they always get away. and also said these f'ing
3:34 am
punks." that is significant for a couple of reasons. and i want to touch on it this. does it mean that perhaps the feds will back off the civil rights allegations being made against zimmerman? >> i suppose the feds don't have to agree with the state's assessment that the word was punks and not some racial epithet. probably, they will back off because you really did need some very clear racist comment for them to find a civil rights violation. >> and they're working together with the state. the feds are working with the state on this, right? >> yes. but you know, often the feds will assist -- the fbi will assist in an investigation, especially in a smaller community although the fdle, the state investigative agency is involved. i don't know how much they really need the federal assistance, but they're there if the resources of the feds are needed. >> so then the other issue, beth, would be the words f'ing punks and the -- it's hard for me to even say this on television, but they're critical because they're evidence, the
3:35 am
blank-holes, does that help us get towards the issue yesterday? we were talking on air that second degree murder requires indicating some sort of malice here, a depraved mind. do you see these comments are the prosecutor's lynchpin to get to that standard? >> i do believe those comments are pretty critical evidence toward the profiling allegation, why he was targeting this teenager. also his state of mind. but the malice, the way they were rolling around on the ground, the way he was shot in the chest indicates he was on top of zimmerman at the time. but pulling a gun out in that scenario when trayvon martin doesn't have any weapons in his hand, doesn't have a knife or a gun, that was more the malice or evil intent as opposed to the words that were expressed before. >> let me jump to the critical phase. there's going to be an arraignment and a deal entered.
3:36 am
jayne weintraub, the immunity hearing. when you claim stand your ground, something triggers in florida. you get a special hearing. don't we expect to hear a lot more evidence? prosecutors have to tip their hand at this immunity hearing where it's in front of a judge, it's not in front of a jury, and the standard is pretty easy, isn't it? >> that's correct. the first time we're going to hear from the prosecution, as far as evidence is concerned, will be at the arthur hearing, at the bond hearing, because the prosecutors have the burden in the bond hearing to prove that the proof is evident and that the presumption is great. so they will put on a lead detective, and they will elicit information and facts that have not yet come out to prove their case to the judge of why their proof is good and that person should not have bond. that will be the first ink ling, and that will be two weeks. >> prosecutors will tip their hand more there than in the probable cause. >> that's correct. they'll have the lead detective there, and mr. o'mara on behalf of zimmerman will be able to cross-examine the police officer and get some information out
3:37 am
there. >> jayne, won't there be this little mini trial? i want to jump ahead to that immunity hearing because, by a lot of legal standards, people who are close to this process and work within florida law say there is a probability that this case will never go to a jury if he prevails in an immunity hearing. >> here's what it is. it's called a motion for declaration of immunity so he cannot be prosecuted. it's a burden by preponderance of the evidence to demonstrate that zimmerman had the right to use justifiable force or deadly force. what that means is he will have to present evidence that he was reasonably in fear that, if he didn't use deadly force, he would have had deadly force used on him or great bodily harm. he's going to claim his head was bashed against the ground and that his nose was broken, that's the great bodily harm. that is going to come from zimmerman himself.
3:38 am
>> so, beth, ten seconds left. what are the odds? you've covered these cases -- i'm not going to say dozens. i'll say the hundreds. you've been in florida a lot. what are the odds that he might prevail in this i community hearing with that standard of preponderance, which is just the tip of a scale? what are the odds? >> the odds are good, but i can't comment on the body of the evidence. but it's an appealable decision. if the state loses at that hearing, they can take it up on appeal. it isn't necessarily over. >> and it's not the final bite. zimmerman can always use it at trial when the jury -- remember we only have six people on the jury in florida. >> lots to discuss, but i'm fresh out of time. jayne weintraub and beth karas, thanks to you both. up next, a dud still making a lot of noise. north korea's big hyped up rocket launch turns out to be an embarrassing failure. it got the attention of the u.n. they're meeting today. let's get a quick check of your travel forecast. here is rob marciano in atlanta. good morning to you. >> good morning, guys. east coast looking good
3:39 am
today. a couple of problems as we point towards the west coast in the central u.s. this storm will create severe weather across parts of the plains today, but a stronger system, which is pounding california right now with rain and snow all the way down to the mexican border, this piece of energy will not only double a couple of feet in the sierras but will inject into the plains tomorrow, and a severe weather threat that's going to be pretty dangerous from oklahoma city through wichita, traditional tornado alley here. storm prediction center, a high risk, dangerous situation unfolding. you're up to date weather-wise. 39 minutes after the hour. according to the signs, ford is having some sort of big tire event. i just want to confirm a w things with fiona. how would you describe the event? it's big. no,i mean in terms of savings how would you sum it up? big in your own words, with respect to selection, what would you say? big okay, let's talk rebates mike, they're big they're big get $100 rebate, plus the low price tire guarantee
3:40 am
during the big tire event. so, in other words, we can agree that ford's tire event is a good size? big big
3:41 am
3:42 am
3:43 am
welcome back. it was an $800 million dud. the rocket that north korea said would launch a weather satellite into orbit disintegrated just minutes after launch. the united states saying, despite the failure, this is a provocative act, adding that the launch, quote, threatens regional security, violates international law, and contraeventucontr contravenes its own recent commitments. and carney adds, because of the rocket launch, the north korean people will lose out on food aid. what can we learn from this failure, and what should we expect from the secretive dictator ship next? joining us to talk about it, major general james "spider" marks, a cnn contributor. he was the senior intelligence
3:44 am
officer in korea for the combined forces command. he is the perfect guy to talk about this. thanks for joining us again in this hour. what do you make of the rocket's failure? >> what we've learned from this is north korea remains a regional threat. they don't have the ability to reach out and touch anybody outside of their region. clearly, if they'd have been able to get this missile into an atmospheric or orbit, then we have a real problem because they could work through the steps of marrying up their nuclear capability. they've weaponized a nuke. intelligence estimates are they have three to five of these things, and then they could launch it. if they had been successful on this missile, and they would have been able to reach out and touch anybody outside of the region. that would have been a problem. but where we are now 24 hours later is where we were before, which is you've got the kim dynasty, they do their own
3:45 am
thing. they're essentially immune to external influences. they will continue to march along this path to acquire this capability, with the help of china. it will be measured, but china plays an extremely large role in the development of almost all aspects of north korea's diplomacy, its military, its fledging economy, what it does, its sponsorship by china remains in place. so north korea today is very much like it was a couple of days ago, which is very much isolated and essentially a very capable military without much support. >> does it seem to you there was no expectation of failure? it seems they were totally unprepared to address the fact this did not happen the way they expected it to. was that surprising to you? >> what's very interesting is when they brought in all the international media folks and they started opening up and they got folks in their command center -- certainly, that's
3:46 am
unprecedented. but my view of this, having looked at this for so long, is none of that matters. it really doesn't matter. if the thing went sideways, they light the rocket, it goes sideways, we've got a problem here, nobody really is concerned about that other than if you're in the rocket business in north korea, you chose a bad career field, and you're going to have some problems going forward. they will continue to develop a capability simply because they can spin the story any way they want, and they'll continue to march down the path. there's no contrition. frankly, we talk about embarrassment. clearly, it is an embarrassment, but what do you do with that embarrassment? what do you learn from that? what they've learned is they don't have the technical capability. they're going to have to enhance it. clearly, there are no indicators that they will get off this path to try to achieve this capability. >> and what are the consequences on moving forward? >> you know, zoraida, the united states has stated, at least initially, on the very heels of
3:47 am
this, that they're not going to provide food aid. let me tell you, the united states and the rest of the international community. >> they don't care, right? >> they're going to provide food aid. they truly will. north korea's got a major problem. the united states understands this. you know who really understands this exceptionally well is the south koreans. and they, the south koreans, very much want to have a form of reunification. this just stifles any efforts that might be in place, but it doesn't change the desired outcome, which is a reunified peninsula. it just makes it that much more difficult. >> which is interesting. we thought for sure the aid would discontinue because that's what the white house said. that's really interesting to know. it's good to know actually. so thank you very much for joining us, general james "spider" marks. major general james "spider" marks. thanks for joining us. >> thanks, zoraida. it's now 47 minutes past 6:00. soledad o'brien with a look at what's ahead on "starting point." this morning we talk to a rick santorum supporter. he held up a sign that said convince me at a mitt romney
3:48 am
rally. he says he represents many republicans who still aren't sold that mitt romney is the right guy for the job. we'll ask him this morning what would convince him. also, the coach has been identified at the center of the nfl bounty scandal, the one who blew the lid of it. we'll talk to a sports writer who said the coach was let go and blackballed by the saints organization. and remember this sammy, the fly girls, homey the crown. "in living color" is back. actor tommy davidson is going to join us to talk about it. and the repplaylist is back. cnn.com/startingpoint. we'll see you at the top of the hour. [ horn honks ] hey, it's sandra -- from accounting. peter. i can see that you're busy...
3:49 am
but you were gonna help us crunch the numbers for accounts receivable today. i mean i know that this is important. well, both are important. let's be clear. they are but this is important too. [ man ] the receivables. [ male announcer ] michelin knows it's better for xerox to help manage their finance processing. so they can focus on keeping the world moving. with xerox, you're ready for real business.
3:50 am
who have used androgel 1%, there's big news. presenting androgel 1.62%. both are used to treat men with low testosterone. androgel 1.62% is from the makers of the number one prescribed testosterone replacement therapy. it raises your testosterone levels, and... is concentrated, so you could use less gel. and with androgel 1.62%, you can save on your monthly prescription. [ male announcer ] dosing and application sites between these products differ. women and children should avoid contact with application sites. discontinue androgel and call your doctor if you see unexpected signs of early puberty in a child, or, signs in a woman which may include changes in body hair or a large increase in acne, possibly due to accidental exposure. men with breast cancer or who have or might have prostate cancer, and women who are, or may become pregnant or are breast feeding should not use androgel.
3:51 am
serious side effects include worsening of an enlarged prostate, possible increased risk of prostate cancer, lower sperm count, swelling of ankles, feet, or body, enlarged or painful breasts, problems breathing during sleep, and blood clots in the legs. tell your doctor about your medical conditions and medications, especially insulin, corticosteroids, or medicines to decrease blood clotting. talk to your doctor today about androgel 1.62% so you can use less gel. log on now to androgeloffer.com and you could pay as little as ten dollars a month for androgel 1.62%. what are you waiting for? this is big news. welcome back. 51 minutes past the hour. time to look at the news. it lasted just minutes. george zimmerman's first court
3:52 am
appearance on the charges of second degree murder of trayvon martin. court documents allege that zimmerman hunt chased down trayvon martin and killed him. newark, new jersey mayor cory booker raced into his neighbor's burning home, carried her out, and then tweeted about it. just suffering smoke inhalliation, no big whoop. carried the woman out of the house. we are both off to hospital. i will be okay. fabulous. some new insight into what caused the deadly indiana state fair stage collapse. investigative reports are claiming the scaffolding was substandard and unable to withstand the heavy gust of wind that took it down. this happened back in 2010. the country duo sugarland was just about to perform when the stage collapsed and killed seven people. sugarland released a new statement saying in part, "jennifer and kristen never told
3:53 am
anyone not to delay the concert because of the weather. nobody wants to get to the bottom of what happened more than they do." 52 minutes past the hour. still ahead, everything is better with bacon. >> really? >> absolutely. they tested that out. this is their new dessert, it is a sundae with bacon and caramel and chocolate. [ male announcer ] this is the at&t network.
3:54 am
a living, breathing intelligence helping business, do more business. in here, opportunities are created and protected. gonna need more wool! demand is instantly recognized and securely acted on across the company. around the world. turning a new trend, into a global phenomenon. it's the at&t network -- securing a world of new opportunities. ♪
3:55 am
[ man announcing ] what we created here. securing a world of new opportunities. what we achieved here. what we learned here. and what we pioneered here. all goes here. the one. the accord. smarter thinking from honda.
3:56 am
there's little kids at the set. >> they're adorable. >> those are my little kids. they're peeking through the glass. take a look at what's trending on the internet. mike and ike all scribbled out. why? turns out mike and ike getting a divorce. the new boxes are hitting the shelves with one name scribbled out, almost like an angry spouse would do that. the new campaign is coming from the elevator group. it's an advertising company they
3:57 am
thought might give a boost to sales. they announced a same sex breakup. mike is leaving for a music career, and ike plans to focus on his art. mike also claimed that ike was loafing around too much, playing words with friends. posted this on his tumblr blog. heard about ike and me splitting up? yeah, we don't agree on the candy. my red, his red. my lime, his lime. my box ideas, his box ideas. so over it. >> i wish we could go over to soledad right now. she's looking incredulous. what the heck are they talking about? >> is this an advertising campaign? this is a gimmick to get people to buy mike and ike, right? they didn't actually break up? got it. >> they're not actually getting a divorce. it's not breaking news. thank you, soledad. what do you do when you fall to number three for the first time in a fast food race? this is what you do? you add more bacon. so burger king is apparently now testing out a new dessert. it's called a bacon sundae.
3:58 am
this is what it is. it's your basic ice cream sundae, dribbled with caramel, chocolate, chopped nuts, and bacon bits. it's only offered in certain markets right now. someone in nashville snapped a photo of the sign, posted it on twitter. i asked you on facebook and twitter whether you tasted it before. no one apparently wants to. >> would you try a bacon sundae? >> of course they would. little kids. >> would you try a bacon sundae, buddy? >> no. >> he's looking at himself on tv. >> i would too. >> they came in to visit mom. this is great. they're fighting. that it is. the news from "a" to "z." i'm ashleigh banfield. >> and i'm zoraida sambolin. starting point starts right now. >> good morning. welcome, everybody. our starting point this morning, north korea fires a dud right into the ocean, but the damage is done. the u.n. security council today
3:59 am
is deciding how to react. also, after weeks in hiding, george zimmerman makes his first court appearance. prosecutors say he profiled trayvon martin before he shot and killed him. we'll take a look this morning at where the case goes from here. he is a super mayor. he comes to the rescue in newark, new jersey. mayor there, cory booker, runs into a burning building, literally to save his neighbors. he's tweeting, though. he must be doing fine. plus president obama defending ann romney today and other stay at home moms. listen. >> there is no tougher job than being a many month. that's work. >> we're going to talk about the political fallout from that comment about ann romney never working a day in her life. it's friday, april the 13th. maybe we should roll right back to bed. "starting point" begins right now. rocking out

157 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on