tv The Situation Room CNN April 29, 2013 5:00pm-7:00pm EDT
that's it for "the readlead from copley square in boston. i'll leave you with wolf blitzer in "the situation room". >> jake, thanks so much. the fbi enters the family home of tamerlan tsarnaev's widow. we go live to boston for the latest in the investigation of the deadly boston marathon attacks. plus, authorities interviewed the so-called man misha. is it mysterious man the suspect's family may have inspired the massacre. and dzhokhar tsarnaev as we've never heard before. you'll hear his voice in gripping new video that just surfaced online. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
>> the fbi descends on the faeb home of the bombing suspect tamerlan tsarnaev's widow as the search for answers continues exactly two weeks since the deadly boston marathon attacks. cnn international correspondent susan candiotti is in boston, joining us with the very latest on the investigation. susan, what do we know about what the feds were doing inside the home? >> reporter: i can tell you this, wolf. we know that they spent several hours there at her home, getting there early this afternoon. now, the fbi is not saying specifically what they are doing there but of course acknowledging what everyone can see with their own eyes, that they have arrived there, that they are asking her questions and our sources tell us this is a woman who remains obviously someone of very high interest to investigate ors as they try to find out what she can tell them about her husband. of course she's a widow now, but did she have any information leading up to the bombing attack?
did she know anything afterwards? did she help anyone hide? these are questions they want to find out as much background about her, about his travels, how much she knew about his trips to russia, for example, in 2011, and in 2012. so there are a multitude of things they're trying to find out. she has a lawyer. she has been meeting with him as well for the past several days. and she is, for now, spending time with her parents up there in rhode island. so that part of the investigation remaining very intense, as the lead investigators on this case, the fbi, try to get as much information from her as she is willing to give. >> susan, what more are we learning about those pressure cooker bombs, the two that were used at the end of the boston marathon to kill and injure all these people and the one that was apparently thrown by the suspects at police? what are we learning about those pressure cooker bombs? >> they're trying to get as much
information about the contents of it, how it was put together, as you know, still trying to find out whether they can locate detonators and where those ingredients came from. of course the key thing now that they're still trying to find out, where these were put together, whether they were tested. presumably they were put together here, but there's no information so far, no evidence, as to whether they were tested here in the united states. as well as training. was he self-trained? when the bomb makers put these together, presumably tamerlan, or did he receive training overseas during any of those trips to russia from my militants over there? of course we know that there have been intense interest in, for example, the al qaeda-based "inspire" online magazine that contains materials on how to make a bomb. but again, so far, wolf, no evidence as to whether that bomb was tested here in the united states. it may have been elsewhere. and of course they're also
paying particular attention to what the mother knew as well as what the widow knew. the mother of the two bombing suspects. as we've reported extensively starting this weekend, they're looking into, for example, a wiretapped conversation that one of her sons made to her while she was in russia in 2011. but we know that it was a conversation that only vaguely mentioned jihad. no word on whether they were talking about a religious struggle, no word as to whether there were any specifics when the word "jihad" was mentioned. and the russians only recently revealed this information to the fbi. so if they had had that information in 2011, that might have helped them when they looked at tamerlan to see if he had any plans in mind for any attacks in the united states or possibly elsewhere. wolf? >> i know over the weekend they wrapped up a search of a landfill. i suspect they were looking for that laptop. did they find anything useful?
>> my source tells me -- this is a source with knowledge of the investigation -- that they did not find the laptop that they were looking for during two days of searches of that landfill. now, can they go on with the investigation without obviously good information they could have retrieved from sfl yes, they can move on, but it's something they certainly would like to get their hands on. they had investigative leads that indicated that someone either -- this is from the suspect himself, dzhokhar tsarnaev, who remains in that prison hospital, and they also had other investigative leads that led them to believe that that computer was ditched probably in a dumpster that in turn was taken to the landfill. now, whether they retrieved other evidence at the landfill is still unclear. wolf? >> susan candiotti in boston with the latest, thanks very much. let's dig a little deeper into this investigation, the republican congressman peter king of new york is joining us. he sits on both the homeland
security and intelligence committees. congressman, thanks very much for coming in. based on everything you know right now -- and i know you're well briefed -- do you believe there were other people dlekt dy involved in the planning of this terrorist attack? >> wolf, i think it's fair to say no one knows for certain, but it's very unlikely they could have carried this out here in the united states without some assistance from someone. for instance, the fact that they put those bombs together and they all went off. generally bomb makers almost always have a missing finger. the reason i'm saying this is it shows how difficult it is. they would have had to be tested, i would think, someone had to assist them, train them. unless these two are absolute geniuses, it's impossible to believe that this was done, almost impossible, without assistance here in the u.s. it's also very unlikely that there was not some assistance or training overseas. i think the general consensus of people working on the case is
whether or not there's any rock-hard evidence right now, the operating belief is that there almost had to be some training overseas, some direction from overseas, and there's just too many parts here which add up to something larger than just two people being involved. >> who are some of the other people out there, maybe some of them aren't even suspects, that the fbi really wants to talk to? >> wolf, i can't go into that, other than to say that obviously they have associates, people they've been dealing with, people in their world, which would be the same in any criminal investigation. i think in this one there are some who are felt to be closeser than others. but i can't really go beyond that. it wouldn't be right to do it. there's no doubt there are certain people being looked at very carefully, very closely. >> as you know, the fbi went into katherine russell tsarnaev's house, the widow of tamerlan tsarnaev, in rhode island. they went in there today to collect presumably some evidence. is she fully cooperating with law enforcement?
>> there's been some level of cooperation, but, again, i would just say, again, from my own instincts and talking to some people involved, it's -- to me, it certainly raises questions that the bomber has a wife, one child and a relatively small apartment and is able to put these explosives together, able to obtain all of these materials, able to move about without really having a job, to go whack to russia and coming b without the wife having some knowledge of what he was up to. again, i don't have evidence to that. i can't tell you what she's been telling the fbi or whether it's -- what lawyer she has or anything like that, other than to say that i would certainly, if i were involved in the investigation -- but i'm not -- question the wife as she is being questioned, find out, if nothing else, who the husband was in contact with, about his comings and goings, who could have radicalized him. but also again probably the
larger issue, does she have any knowledge whatsoever of any of the explosives or explosive p precursors or the weapons at all used by either brother. >> it's unclear to me and i wonder if it is to you if she's actually answered any questions posed by the fbi yet directly. >> wolf, i can't go into that. obviously i've heard some things, but i cannot go into that other than to say that obviously the fbi is interested in what she has to say and what she knows. >> there was one box, at least one box, taken out of that house, her parents' house, in rhode island that said "dna evidence," if you will. do you know what that was all about? >> again, no. as far as that particular -- no, i do know the fbi would certainly be checking the dna toetto et the extent they can anyone involved with these brothers in any way, to see if there's any link to the explosives or weapons.
again, that's part of any investigation. it's a normal part of any investigation, certainly one as intense and vital as this one. >> do you know anything about this canadian box eer turned militant around the same time apparently as tamerlan tsarnaev who was a boxer himself? he returned dagestan. do you know anything about this canadian boxer? >> i think i only know what you do, wolf. i'd rather leave it at that. this is a very, very sensitive investigation. i don't want to indicate i know something or don't know something. fact is that obviously there have been questions about what happened to him, but i can't go any further than that. >> what about this so-called misha, this armenian who converted to islam and some of the family members of the suspect say he brain-washed tamerlan into becoming a radical. what can you tell us about misha? >> again, wolf, i have to -- my understanding is they do know
who he is. they are talking to him. i can't go beyond that as to whether or not he did have this svengali-like influence over him like the family members are complaining about or if he was just an associate who spoke with him. that's all part of the investigation going on now. >> as you know, the russians say they intercepted a phone conversation between the mother in dagestan and presumably one of the sons in the united states, in which they suppose, according to these reports, of jih jihad. what can you tell us about this? >> there's no doubt that there was, which has become public -- communication involving the mother, where she made it clear that she thought her son was a confirmed jihadist or certainly a confirmed islamist radical who would be willing to die or certainly willing to carry out whatever he was asked to do. that at least is the tone and thrust of the communication. now, exactly what form of
communication it is ooif i don't know if i'm at liberty to say that. no doubt the mother made statement like this or indicated this. the russians are aware of this, and the russians did not give it to the fbi back in 2011. if they had, i think it definitely would have changed the whole tone of the investigation and it well could have led to a very different result. all of us wish that the russians had provided that information to the fbi when the fbi did ask for additional information and the russians did not respond. >> are they cooperating better now, the russians, with the u.s. in this investigation? >> my understanding is they are. the russians also see this as an opportunity to have america realize the pornimportance of t whole -- or the danger of the whole chechen movement. i think it serves the russians' purposes right now. however, there's always going to be a certain level of distrust between the u.s. and russia, between our intelligence agencies and theirs. so they will give us i think whatever helps them, they will
not give us anything that will reveal their sources and methods. but they're certainly being much more form coming and i think both sides, the united states and russia, see this as an opportunity to make progress, certainly as far as this case is concerned as also as far as international terrorism is concerned. >> have you been briefed on dzhokhar tsarnaev's condition? he's in that prison hospital right now outside of boston, about 40 miles or so. a maximum security facility there. is he recuperating? is he talking? what's going on? >> first of all, i have not received any recent broiefings. what i learn is just from people that i know who are involved in the intelligence community or law enforcement community. there hasn't been an official briefing since we left washington friday, at least for me. what i'm getting is from sources that i have. my understanding is that he is certainly out of danger. he certainly was able to
communicate. he had an operation in the -- some kind of surgical procedure in the middle of his interrogation and he's doing -- fortunately or unfortunately he's doing fairly well. >> bottom line, and i'll let you go, should we be bracing for more arrests anytime soon? >> i would just say the investigation is ongoing, and without giving any inside information, my belief is that there has to be others involved, one way or the other, whether they were knowing, unoing, whether they were actual conspirat conspirators, facilitators, whether they knew something was wrong and willing to cover it up but didn't know the details or if they were actually involved. i think all of that will come out. but, again, it's just a sort of semi-educated guess on my part that i think we will be seeing others named one way or the other at some level or another. >> peter king, the chairman of the homeland security subcommittee on counterterrorism and intelligence, thanks very much for joining us. >> thank you, wolf.
>> when we come back, the bombing suspect dzhokhar tsarnaev covered in blood. just ahead, a chilling firsthand account inside the hospital just moments after he was captured and brought in. plus -- you're going to hear from dzhokhar for the first time in his own words playing with his little niece in riveting new video that's just surfaced on line. aw, shoodiscover card.payment. i missed a payment. aw, shoot. shoot! this is bad, isn't it? oh no! we're good! this is your first time missing a payment. and you've got our new card, so we don't charge you a late fee for for that. plus, we won't hike up your apr for paying late either. man, that's great! it is great, man! thank you. well, thanks for your help. yeah, no problem. call back anytime. at discover, we treat you like you'd treat you. late payment forgiveness. get the new it card at discover.com.
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government on travel from the embassy by team of americans to investigate down in dagestan, the trip that tamerlan tsarnaev took, and that cooperation continues. >> our chief political analyst gloria borger is here in "the situation room." gloria, they may be cooperating a little bit better now, but recently they weren't fessly on the same page. >> no. cooperation with the russians is not something that the american government has been talking about as it pertains to this case. wolf, look, you just heard congressman king talk about the fact that the russians had secretly taped a conversation between tsarnaev, the elder brother, and his mother, vaguely mentioning jihad. we know that the fbi, we know that the cia had been alerted to this gentleman, and they were not told about that taped phone conversation. we know that the fbi went back to the russians and said, can you give us more information?
and they got stonewalled. so we know there was no cooperation there. i've been talking to a couple of intelligence sources who say to me, this is what you expect from the russians, that there's a lot of suspicion, he said. there's no guarantee that they would ever share their source information with us. if fact, we presume that they would never share their source information with us, which they did not. so the outstanding and most important question is, did they ever, when they were asked, provide the why. why should we be concerned about tamerlan? and the answer to that is an unequivocal no. so now the president is talking to putin, obviously, but before that, absolutely not. >> you know, we're hearing increasingly some criticism of the way the fbi, the department of homeland security, the cia may have dealt with certain aspects of this case before the boston bombings, but you're finding out -- i know you're doing some serious reporting on this.
it's not necessarily cut and dried. >> none of these things are ever cut and dried. first of all, the fact that we did get a heads-up from the russians about something should have raised a huge red flag because this is not -- they are not the british. they are not the french. this doesn't happen every day. so that is a problem. when the cia and the fbi are both investigating the same person, another red flag. did the fbi share what it knew with state and local authorities? there are lots of questions about that because the fbi very often doesn't like to do that. now, when you talk to people in law enforcement, they will say to you, look, the fbi is under certain very strict guidelines about what it can and cannot do in regards to somebody who is, say, here with a green card, or in the case of the younger brother, as we now know, he's a citizen. but somebody who is here legally
with a green card, can they just go and wiretap him? unless they have real cause. and the answer to that is of course not. however, again, questions will be raised. we knew that he was going to dagestan. we lost track of him. we didn't know when he was coming back. and, by the way, we need to know the answer to the question -- and we may be getting it -- what did the russians do about watching him when he was back in russia? >> he was there, tamerlan, for six months last year. >> i presume someone was watching him. >> i assume, knowing the russians anddagestan, i'm sure they were. i hope there will will be a full-scale commission of inquiry not necessarily for recriminations but to learn from what happened, to make sure these kinds of mistakes don't happen again. >> by the way, that's congress' job, oversight is congress' job. just ahead, has the fbi
finally found the notorious misha that members of the bombing suspect's family blame for allegedly inspiring the boston marathon attacks? and a riveting firsthand account of the bombing suspect dzhokhar tsarnaev covered in blood and moaning in a great deal of pain just after being rushed to the hospital.
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let's bring in our national correspondent deborah feyerick. she has details. what are you picking up? >> u.s. investigators are very interested in seeing whether or not there was a link between tamerlan tsarnaev and this young can kadia canadian. he was a boxer turned jihadist. he and six others were killed in the dagestan region back in july of 2012. this was the very same time that tsarnaev was also in the region. the source says that the canadian's body was brought from where he was killed in the mountains down into the mosque where the body was prepared. this was on july 14th. and then two days later tsarnaev left the region to return to the united states. and what's so interesting about this and why investigators want to see whether there was any sort of connection is because of the fact that tsarnaev was actually in dagestan waiting for a russian passport, and he left without ever obtaining that
particular passport. he left very quickly, it would appear, after the death of that young canadian. what's interesting is tsarnaev came back to the united states. he initially had told russian authorities that the reason he needed a passport was because he had lost his passport, but he did arrive into the united states. and to get in he would have had to have both a passport and u.s. alien registration card, both of those documents, for him to be allowed back into new york which is where he flew into. investigators are also looking into a connection between tsarnaev and another young jihadist, an 18-year-old killed in may of 2012. so you have these sort of two killings, the one in may 2012 and july 2012, by russian security forces who were cracking down in that region. so they want to know whether tsarnaev that region without his new passport because perhaps of a growing concern. all of that under investigation,
wolf. >> he didn't even bother to pick up the passport, just rushed out of the country, which is raising a lot of suspicions right now. i know you're looking at this part of the story, deb. thanks very much. when we come back, a riveting firstland account of the bombing suspect dzhokhar tsarnaev described as being covered in blood and moaning in a great deal of pain. just moments after being rushed to the local hospital. and dzhokhar tsarnaev in his own words as you've never seen or heard him before, purportedly playing with his niece in brand-new video that just surfaced online.
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we're getting some new information just coming into "the situation room" right now about tamerlan tsarnaev and his body. ashleigh banfield is getting the information for us. she's in boston. had what are you learning, ashleigh? >> reporter: wolf, the state medical examiner here in massachusetts has confirmed to
cnn that they have determined a cause of death for tamerlan, but they are not releasing it at this time. it's sort of a legal glitch, so to speak, because the way the state law works here is that once a family or a loved one claims a body, that's when they actually file a death certificate with the local cleshg clerk's office. but i think we all know the story right now that this family is extraordinarily disparate in that one is incarcerated and parents of tamerlan tsarnaev are in russia with no immediate plans to come here to claim this body or visit with their younger son who's facing pretty severe charges. but they've determined, the state medical examiner is confirming that they have indeed determined a cause of death. of course all of that in response to the gun battle with police a week and a half ago. >> and i know you're also
getting information about the younger brother, dzhokhar tsarnaev, when he was brought to the hospital after that shootout with police. what are you learning? >> reporter: yes. we're getting some extraordinary details about what it was like that night at the beth israel deaconess hospital when the ambulance came in with paramedics. a senior hospital employee confirmed to me it was kind a remarkable evening. he had direct view of that suspect coming in. he reports to me that dzhokhar was covered in blood, head to toe, he said. in fact, his face was very bloody. he was wrapped in gauze, a great deal of field gauze. it appeared to him that he had lost a great deal of blood and he was semiconscious and his eyes were closed. he wasn't making any sounds, wolf, as i came to that ambulance bay at beth israel. but when he got taken upstairs to the red zone trauma area, that's when he was beginning to
make a great deal of noise, in fact ush fact, moaning quite loud. it appeared that he was in a great deal of pain. when i asked if he was saying anything, asking anyone for help, saying anyone's names, muttering any words that made sense, the response was no. he was just muttering moans in a great deal of pain. but before he got up there, the local police wanted to establish some kind of a crime scene investigation at that ambulance, and they were told in no uncertain terms that the fbi would be handling this. i'm told, this is a quote, the discussion was a quick one. the fbi stayed by his stied throughout the entire treatment. let me tell you how it happened. when he was rushed to that red zone trauma area, that's the area in an emergency that's separated by curtains. there were other peopatients be treated there. i was told none of them were bombing victims and that the fbi were in that staging area as he was stabilized. he was then sent down to the area where they do the ct scans and the x-rays.
he got both, then was taken right away to the o.r. where he was praioperated on. again, fbi agents staying very close by. other law enforcement also outside the room, everyone from the boston police to the fbi agents within very close proximity during all of this treatment. then after that it was only a matter of two to three hours, wolf, he was rushed out of that o.r. and taken to that secure facility. last week we reported to you exclusively that we had discovered on an upper floor of beth israel he was taken to an icu that they had locked off, no other patients. in fact, i can now report to you because the security risk was gone that that was on the sixth floor, and that's where he remained as he actually gained strength rather quickly. my source says it was remarkable how quickly he recovered and he was, quote, in a lot better shape than many of us thought. >> 19-year-old, healthy, strong, they can recover from these injuries relatively quickly. thanks very much, ashleigh, with the latest from boston.
for the first time, we're now also hearing dzhokhar tsarnaev in his own words, seeing a side of him we haven't necessarily seen before. some gripping video now circulating online showing the boston bombing suspect playing with what appears to be his niece. it's believed to have been uploaded to his twitter page back in march. watch this. >> you burped in my face. get out! >> no go! >> get out of my room. >> no! >> i said get out! >> no get out. >> get out. >> no! >> i said get out. >> no. >> look at me. get out! >> no get out. >> look at me. i said get out! oh, give me a kiss. no, give me a kiss. atta girl. now get out. >> we blurred the child's face deliberately from that video, but you hear him playing with
his niece there back in march. we're getting more information now about dzhokhar tsarnaev's condition in that prison where he is recuperating right now. it's a tiny 10 x 10 cell, an incredible find between two buildings in lower manhattan. we now know what part of the plane it came from and that it came from the type of plane used in the 9/11 attacks. as soon as i met fiona and i was describing the problem we were having with our rear brakes, she immediately triaged the situation, knew exactly what was wrong with it, the car was diagnosed properly, it was fixed correctly i have confidence knowing that if i take to ford it's going to be done correctly with the right parts and the right people. get a free brake inspection and brake pads installed for just 49.95 after rebates when you use the ford service credit card. did you tell him to say all of that? no, he's right though...
dzhokhar tsarnaev is able to speak and is interacting with staff at the facility. don, what eliminatise are you l? >> reporter: as you're saying, wolf, he is talking. we heard about the wound he had in his neck and he wasn't able to speak, but apparently it's better and he's talking, talking to medical staff about his condition but not speaki ining investigators. a 10 x 10, we have a 10-foot tent here, this is about the size of the room he's in, of the cell. it's actually a lot smaller space to move around because he's got a small bed in one corner, a sink and a toilet in the other corner. so it's a very small space. but, again, he is speaking to medical staff, not speaking to investigators right now, and after he was read his miranda rights. so no more information for now unless it comes through his attorneys, wolf. >> and when you say he's
speaking to the medical personnel, he has stopped cooperating completely after he received his miranda rights. that's based on everything we're hearing. i assume you're hearing the same thing outside the prison there. >> reporter: we're hearing not that he stopped cooperating completely, but he's not giving as much information as he was before the miranda rights. and anything that has to do with the investigation or anything that could incriminate him has to go through his attorneys first. so if they want to speak to him, they have to ask the attorney and the attorney must be present. and i think that's a distinction. >> don, thanks very much. don lemon just outside that prison in massachusetts. we're also getting some new information on that mysterious piece of 9/11 plane wreckage just discovered in new york city. why an intense search is just starting now. plus, a manhunt under way in northern california as police search for the killer of an 8-year-old child. and two weeks after the boston
marathon bombings, the hunt for the mysterious misha could be over. the focus on a rhode island apartment, we're live there when we come back. i'm really glad that girl stayed at home. vo: expedia helps 30 million travelers a month find what they're looking for. one traveler at a time. expedia. find yours. there's a lot i had to do... watch my diet. stay active. start insulin...
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attention. a digital trail shows images that he liked in the past. several include references to chechnya marked with dozens of hash tags, one shows a chechen warlord who masterminded terrorist attacks against russia but was killed in 2006. self show dzhokhar interacting with other users. an expert on chechnya say they show an understanding of chechnya and its struggle for independence from russia. close friends tell cnn money from what they saw he used instagram for social purposes. so how were we able to resurrect them/. >> we're looking on a photo from instagram. this is the copy that exists today. we can see these 19 users have liked it and we can see there are 6 comments on the photo and r here are the hash tags. however, we can also go back in time thanks to the google web cache. here's more data around april 10th. we can see there's the same 6
comments there are today and here is a list of users who liked the photo. there's one that liked it in the april 10th version of the page, jmaister that is not on the current version. >> law enforcement experts like julien julien julienne kayyen say this will get attention now. >> were there clues embedded in the combination of image that's can tell us about what dzhokhar was thinking? because some of the pictures were very benign, some of them standing alone don't mean anything. >> digital footprints continue to get bigger as more and more people are willing to put their lives online. back to the boston bombing investigation shortly. other news we're following includes the fact that we're learning now new details about a large piece of a plane which has apparently been wedged between two lower manhattan buildings
since 9/11. mary snow is on the scene for us. mary, what are you learning? >> reporter: wolf, as you can imagine, there's a state of hern lower manhattan. there are white trucks behind me, they are from the city's medical examiner's office. we're told the city's medical examiner's office will begin testing for human remains as early as tomorrow morning. in the meantime, the police department has been working with boeing and have no reason to question that this wreckage came from the september 11th attacks. it sat unnoticed for more than 11 years. police believe this plane wreckage is part of the wing from one of the two hijacked planes on 9/11. the piece was discovered last week just blocks from ground zero. a woman who works across the
street says she's been crying ever since. did it all come back in an instant? >> one second, i'm telling you. what happened, everybody name, my husband, it was there. everything, you know, shocked. >> reporter: the wreckage is identified as part of the trailing edge flap from beneath the wing from a boeing 767. it's not clear which of the two planes it belongs to. police say surveyors found it at a construction site behind a building no stranger to headlines. in 2010, it generated protests when a developer wanted to build a mosque and islamic community center at the building. opponents said it was too close to the site of the attack. a piece of landing gear crashed but the building's roof on september 11th. this piece measures five feet long, four feet wide, and 17 inches deep. now the city's medical examiner will search the site for possible human remains.
rosaline says that's something long overdue. her brother was killed on september 11th. her family did get some remains but question the thoroughness of the search. >> the search and cleanup operation done in the years after 9/11, especially for all the families that have no remains of their loved one, not even a finger, nothing. so, i wonder if you can find a piece of plane, what else can be found down there? >> reporter: but this new discovery didn't come as a total shock to the city's police commissioner, who spoke about it late last week. >> if you see how confined this space is and you realize the chaos that existed down here on this street, i think it's understandable. not that surprising. very, very confined. and no construction worker went on or no cleanup went on in this 18-inch space between the two
buildings. >> reporter: wolf, the police department says it can't recall the last time wreckage like this was found beyond the weeks and months of the september 11th attacks. >> mary snow, thank you. when we come back, a killer on the loose in northern california. the latest on a search for someone who stabbed an 8-year-old girl. plus, investigator s zeroin in on the people who knew the tsarnaev brothers best. agents search the home of the estranged suspect's widow. [ lisa ] my son is my world.
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call or click today. with odor free aspercreme. powerful medicine relieves pain fast, with no odor. so all you notice is relief. aspercreme. a man hunt is under way in northern california for the killer of an 8-year-old girl. lair la fowler was pronounced dead after her brother found her with stab wounds. it all happened while her parents were out of the house. what are you learning, paul? >> reporter: well, wolf, i just got off the phone with the assistant coroner here and he tells me the initial cause of death is shock and hemorrhaging because of multiple stab wounds.
we are also learning leila at 1:01 p.m. saturday, just six minutes after she arrived. all of this just stunning this community and leaving many people here frightened. sheriff's deputies on foot and in patrol cars. this is where leila fowler, the 8-year-old girl stabbed to death in her home, attended third grade. some classmates held flowers to leila, her parents held on to fear. >> i'm scared for my kids and for the family. it's horrible. he was friends with her in his class, classmates, they sit together at school. very sad. things like that don't happen here. >> reporter: tell us about what you have and why.
>> i didn't want her to die. >> reporter: leila's mother told cnn via facebook, we are devastated. she was so full of life. look at our baby girl, she didn't deserve this. police say leila and her 12-year-old brother were home alone saturday when he saw an intruder leaving the house. he then found his sister stabbed, severely wounded. she later died. since then, police have been running down leads but have no suspect suspect. >> we're searching, you know, into attics and storage sheds. it's a difficult area to search, it's rural, remote. grass is tall right now. >> there are a lot of empty homes and outbuildings around here, a lot of huge rock proppings where people can hide in. >> reporter: authorities have combed the home and neighborhood for evidence. >> we did collect some fingerprints during that search and also collected what we believe to be dna. those prints and that dna will hopefully be processed within the next week.
>> reporter: michael range lives near the fowlers and heard of leila's deadly stabbing from a neighbor boy. >> i took my kids instantly, locked the doors, waited to find out what happened. it was scary. we've been inside all weekend. >> reporter: a lot of residents here feel trapped, pinned down after the mysterious death of leila fowler, who would have turned 9 in june. and leila's mother tells us that they were a blended family, meaning there are half brothers and half sisters. she said leila had five siblings here in this community and another three outside the state. wolf, a lot of people move here to these foothills for the peace and tranquillity and say that has been shattered. >> certainly has been. thanks very much, paul, thanks very much, paul, reporting. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com happening now, did an agent snag critical evidence from the home of tamerlan tsarnaev's
in-laws? plus, the tsarnaev brothers and the misha mystery. the feds have tracked down their elusive friend, but now misha's trail appears to have gone cold. and the new suspect accused of sending a poison letter to the president of the united states. he appears in court today. we're learning more about him and his bizarre feud with an elvis impersonator. i'm wolf blitzer, and we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. you're in "the situation room." right now, investigators are zeroing in on key people with ties to the boston bombing suspects or possibly to the attack itself. important focus today, tamerlan tsarnaev's widow, katherine russell. fbi agents entered her family's home in rhode island and appeared to walk away with evidence. erin mcpike is on the scene for us in rhode island. what's the very latest, erin?
>> reporter: wolf, she is back here inside this house. her mother brought her back from her attorney's office after she was inside the office this afternoon for about 90 minutes. there were federal officials with them, but earlier today, wolf, when federal officials left the russell house, there were about five of them, and they carried out a couple things, including black equipment cases and the most interesting thing of all was a clear plastic bag marked dna samples, wolf. >> do we know anything else that's going on there, as far as any statements she's made to the fbi? i know she's lawyered up, she's got lawyers galore. >> reporter: well, wolf, all we know so far from the fbi is they, obviously, are confirming they were investigating her today as part of their ongoing investigation, but won't comment on specific aspects of the case. they have been very interested in her since the very beginning and federal vehicles have been stationed outside the russell household for the past week.
we've seen actually a lot of federal officials in the area as they remained interested in katie russell and her family and what katie russell might have known. wolf, as you know, she and her young daughter lived with tamerlan tsarnaev and dzhokhar tsarnaev in their small apartment in cambridge. >> any indication at all she wants to claim her husband's body? >> reporter: so far, not yet. and the other thing we should point out, wolf, katie russell's attorneys have said almost nothing. obviously, they were driving her to their office earlier today. we tried to speak to them. they have had nothing to say. the entire family has been tight lipped. we did get a chance to ask katie russell's mother how they are doing and she said the best we can. otherwise, we have heard very little from the russell family in the last week. >> we might be hearing some more relatively soon. let's see. thanks, erin mcpike, in rhode island. there's other parts of the story in rhode island, as well. we're told that authorities have
found and questioned the mysterious man previously known only as misha. he's been accused by some relatives of brain washing tamerlan tsarnaev. we're looking into new claims about misha's identity and influence on the suspects and their family. brian todd is in rhode island for us following up on these leads. what's the latest that you're getting, brian? >> reporter: well, wolf, we may have the most solid lead yet on the figure that relatives say so heavily influenced tamerlan tsarnaev, but law enforcement officials are still hedging as to whether this is, in fact, that same man. their search for the shadowy figure known as misha have taken investigators to rhode island, but it's not clear the man here is the same misha who relatives say radicalized tamerlan tsarnaev. a man was interviewed who said he had known tamerlan tsarnaev,
that he was over to islam. he'd been interviewed by federal authorities. he told carol he had no role in the boston marathon bombings and he denied very emphatically that he was a teacher of tamerlan tsarnaev. he said, no, i was not his teacher. i didn't instruct him in anything. i had nothing to do with any of his developments, but i couldn't get him to tell me anything more than that about their relationship. he was just extremely agitated and didn't want to go into details. >> reporter: that interview brought us and a crush of other reporters to this apartment complex in rhode island, identified as a residence of his parents. no leads here until a lawyer showed up. >> yes, i can. >> reporter: as he emerged from the apartment and was swarmed, he said he represented the parents as a man he identified as mike. he said they've also been interviewed by law enforcement. >> i expect the authorities will
be asking additional questions, but at some juncture they will be closing that part of the information. >> reporter: law enforcement sources have not told us he is the same misha who heavily influenced tamerlan tsarnaev, according to his relatives. >> this person took his brain, just brainwashed him completely. tamerlan is off now. isn't any obedience with respect to his own father. >> reporter: others say he was preaching to tamerlan late at night, causing tension between the parents. if misha has been interview eed federal law enforcement authorities, what would he have been asked? >> how far involved was this misha, did he do more than just put these thoughts in tamerlan's head or get tamerlan to change his philosophy about his religion, or did he do more, introduce him to others who are part of this plot or maybe provided training on the
explosives or maybe provide an apartment or some garage to store the equipment? >> reporter: adding to questions on whether this man in rhode island is the same misha or not, law enforcement authorities had told us previously they were working with their overseas partners to try to locate him. so far, we have no information that's changed, wolf. >> from what you're hearing, brian, is there any indication at all they are going to charge this person in rhode island with anything? >> reporter: the indications we're getting, wolf, from law enforcement sources, is they are not charging him with anything. he apparently did give them his computer and his phone, at least that's what he told the new york review of books, and he says they are about to close the case on him. no indications right now they are going to charge him with anything relating to this plot. >> this part of the story might be over, the misha mystery. thanks, brian, very much. meanwhile, another threat to the bombing investigation, thofrt r authorities are looking
into a possible link between tamerlan tsarnaev and a canadian boxer who died a violent death back in russia. let's go to nick robertson. he's in dagestan with more on this part of the story. what are you learning over there, nick? >> reporter: wolf, we understand the fbi is looking into any connection between this 23-year-old canadian whose parents were -- his mother not far from this region here, his father also from russia. he'd come back here. he had joined with rebel forces here, died, according to government officials, in a firefight last july, the 14th of july, just a couple of days before tsarnaev left russia and went back to the united states. people in that village still sensitive. particularly sensitive at the moment because of tsarnaev being
in the headlines. many of the families of people who were killed with him, seven people killed altogether, many of those other family members still live in this village. their sensitivities are raw, we're told, although no confirmed connections in that village that we can ascertain so far with tsarnaev, but this is a connection the fbi are looking into. they were both boxers, both had a radical view of islam. both had immigrated to the united states. and both had been drawn back here, wolf. >> very suspicious stuff going on over there. i know you're one of the few journalists to actually go into this area where this boxer was killed. what can you tell us about it? >> reporter: this is an area that's about an hour and a half drive from the capital here. it is an area that has been the center and focus of military
operations, russian security forces operations. it is an area that is, if you will, still a place where there are potential for operations. and it is still an area where people -- where it's not, if you will, directly under the writ of authorities, where there's still concern for the safety of people who would travel in and out of that area. that said, in that military operation, seven people were killed, but some of those family members still live there and still very sensitive to this issue, wolf. >> very suspicious stuff over there. thanks very much, nic robertson on the scene for us in dagestan. up next, many boston bombing survivors don't know how they are going to pay for their enormous medical expenses. wait until you hear what they now owe. a new word on the suspects' parents and their on and off plans to come to the united
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all right. this just coming in. the massachusetts medical examiner's office has determined the cause of death of tamerlan tsarnaev, but the information is being held until someone claims the body. no one has yet, including his wife and so far no members of the family have come forward to claim it, either. we're also learning more details about the parents of the boston bombing suspects and whether they will be coming to the united states from russia. they spoke to cnn's nick paton walsh. tell us what the father and mother said to you today. >> reporter: wolf, i spoke to them earlier on today. they were quite clear, the father very brief in conversation saying simply, i am sick, very sick. then the mother able to
elaborate more saying he was, indeed, very ill, having issues with blood pressure, appears to be shaking, as well. some serious issues there. of course, these are affecting their travel fans. their father had originally attended to travel to the united states. of course, with his health, that is now put on hold indefinitely. the mother very clear in her eyes, she would travel to the united states regardless of the risk against her, potentially, for outstanding allegations of shoplifting or even as the investigation begins, suggesting she might be wanted for further questioning, she would go to the united states if she was promised she could see her son dzhokhar. >> a raid over the weekend, here's the question, nick, any direct link or even indirect link to the boston bombing? >> reporter: this is a complicated one, but it's worth following through. there was a raid in dagestan early sunday morning.
militant there killed by russian special forces. violent confrontation there. he was part of the group run by a man called abu dujan. he was killed in december. abu dujan, a video of him was linked off the youtube page of tamerlan tsarnaev. we don't know if they met, but we do know abu dujan used to be part of the same armed group. now, that means there is ongoing activity by russian security services on the ground in russia as that investigation continues. and as we know, the fsb and fbi are exchanging information. no specific link between the men, but certainly a substantial coincidence, wolf? >> we do know president obama spoke to president putin today in russia. they had what the white house calls a good conversation, and the president of the united
states thanked the russian president for the cooperation in this investigation, at least this phase in the investigation. i get the sense both of these governments, despite the fact they are not allies or close friends, they are working a little bit more closely now as far as the terrorism situation is concerned. is that the impression you're getting in moscow, as well, nick? >> reporter: well, it's very interesting to see how little the russians are giving away in public here, but how often it appears putin and obama want to talk about the cooperation they are doing and appear to want to be talking positively about that. we also heard from an aide from putin in moscow saying quite simply the continuation of cooperation will continue. severe obvious efforts for cooperation here on the surface. combined with some strange back chatter we're hearing from, you know, on the hill, et cetera, about there not really having been as much information coming from the russians as they would have liked, but looking around,
we have the russians repeatedly warning the americans well before tsarnaev came on the radar after boston and further information going from the russians to americans about potential lipgs between the mother and sons discussing jihad over the telephone. so there seems to be a chain of information. you don't quite know it's actions of russians in dagestan over the weekend and raid and continuous pass of information feeds together. there certainly seems to be adequate exchange of information right now. wolf, the presidents are talking in a cooperative fashion, wolf? >> that's important, they are at least talking about the sensitive suggest. nick paton walsh in moscow, having flown to moscow from dagestan. coming up, much more on tamerlan tsarnaev supposedly talking about jihad on the phone with his mother. that according to russian police sources. why didn't the russians share that information with the u.s. earlier?
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all right. every bit of information about the tsarnaev brothers, every glimpse of their lives, it could help solve unanswered questions about the bombings. let's bring in rob marciano, formerly of cnn, now the co-host of entertainment tonight. good to have you back here, rob, on cnn. let's talk about this boxing trainer, whom you interviewed
for "entertainment tonight." he worked closely with tamerlan tsarnaev. what did he tell you? >> well, this is a trainer that's been highly sought after by the media since the bombings, wolf, and he's declined all media requests. he's been interviewed by the fbi. he final lly granted our reques after we found video of not only tsarnaev, but john allen, the trainer himself. so, we had a revealing talk just yesterday in the gym where he would train tsarnaev. listen to a couple of the things he said to me. >> he gave me the impression that the reason he was unable to go to the olympics was because he couldn't become a citizen because of mishandling of paperwork, and he felt it was done on purpose so the guy he beat could go to the olympic trials. >> do you think that this roadblock in his boxing career sent him on the path to these
bombings? >> absolutely. >> tell me what it's like to be like inside the ring. >> you know, i think it disappears. he just does what he needs to do. at that point when lights are on, there's no ego involved. his personality has nothing to do with it, you know, he's a machine. clean, clear technique, knows what he needs to do and just does it. >> so, he's talking about the boxing, obviously, there. he was the best boxer in that gym. he had won the golden gloves in new england two years running and couldn't advance to the national global level because of his citizenship. he wanted to become a u.s. citizen, couldn't, the main reason being a domestic violence charge. so, that was the issue there. but getting into his psyche, wolf, he said he was unemotional in the ring. that was important in order to be a good fighter. unfortunately, being unemotional made him a good liar and he was able to lead this double life
and, obviously, go about these very unemotional killings and maimings across boston. >> good interview, rob. good to have you back here on cnn. i know you're going to have a lot more on your show, "entertainment tonight," later on. appreciate it very much rob marciano. there's other news we're following around the world, including a wave of deadly car bombings in iraq. lisa sylvester is here. she has this and some of the other top stories, what else is going on? >> hi, there, wolf. there were five blasts, four in shiite areas in southern iraq today. 25 people were killed, dozens more were injured. it's not clear who's behind the attacks, but it's feared it could be tensions. and this is the aftermath of an apparent attempt to kill syria's prime minister. he survived a bomb that hit his motorcade in an upscale
neighborhood of the syrian capital. no one has claimed responsibility. state media calls it a terrorist explosion. and opening statements today in the wrongful death trial pitting michael jackson's mother and children against one of the world's largest entertainment companies. the jacksons are suing aeg live, promoter of the comeback tour. conrad murray was working for aeg. murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter. new york jets have released quarterback tim tebow. he was told the decision this morning after he reported to workouts. no comment from tebow, but rex ryan said in a statement, quote, unfortunately, things did not work out the way we all had hoped. tebow certainly has a lot of fans out there. i'm sure they are disappointed and want to see what he'll do
next. >> thanks very much. still ahead, the boston bombing investigators pursuing what they are calling people of interest. who are they, could they have had a direct link to the attacks? new details on a man accused of sending a poison letter to the president of the united states and his feud with the elvis impersonator. this story keeps getting stranger. awwwww... arigato! we are outta here! party...... finding you the perfect place, every step of the way. hotels.com
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an eerie first in the boston bombing investigation two weeks after the carnage, we're now able to hear what the surviving suspect sounds like. look at this video circulating online of dzhokhar tsarnaev playing with his niece whose face we blurred. >> look at me, i said. give me a kiss. no, give me a kiss. that a girl. now get out. okay, okay, come here. give me another kiss. >> that's just one of the new developments in the case. let's bring in our crime and justice correspondent joe johns. he's been looking at all the elements coming in. what else are you learning, joe? >> the search for accomplices or accessories are continuing today, some in the intelligence community were warning given the erratic behavior of the tsarnaev
brothers both here and in russia, the tendency to think in terms of a larger conspiracy so far is starting to look counterproductive. federal agents visited the rhode island home monday where the widow of suspected bomber tamerlan tsarnaev has been staying. agents left with two boxes and a bag marked dna samples. katherine russell is one on a check-off list of people in the united states that federal sources said investigators were ticking through. one question is whether she spoke with her husband or his brother after their pictures were first released to the public by the fbi, and if so, what they may have talked about, but the law enforcement source says it was premature to call any of the interviewees persons of interest. >> there are persons of interest in the united states. >> there are still persons of interest in the united states that the fbi would like to have conversations with. >> reporter: investigators are still trying to find out when the brothers were radicalized,
but sources in the intelligence community warn there may be no quick and easy answer. the man identified as the elusive misha, who had been accused by the tsarnaev family, has denied any undo influence and was described as being very cooperative with agents, even allowing them to search his computer, according to one source. many see tamerlan's trip to russia in 2012 as critical to understanding the attack on the boston marathon. >> we have been cooperating with the russian government on travel from the embassy by a team of americans to investigate down in dagestan, the trip that tamerlan tsarnaev took. >> reporter: the russians are cooperating, recently telling the u.s. of a 2011 telephone conversation they intercepted between a man they believe to be tamerlan tsarnaev and his mother. agents got a thumbnail
description of the conversation and there had been some reference to jihad, know the context is not clear. >> i think they have information that would be incredibly helpful that they haven't provided yet. >> one legal note, defense attorney judy clarke, who most recently represented massachusetts murderer jared loughner in arizona is representing tsarnaev. he's eligible for the death penalty if the justice department decides to pursue it, wolf? >> thanks very much. let's dig deeper right now with our national security analyst, former fbi assistant director tom fuentes. thanks very much. we did get a statement from the fbi after visiting katherine russell's parents' house in rhode island. she's the widow of tsarnaev. we are there as part of our ongoing investigation, but we aren't permitted to discuss specific aspects of our case. how interested, do you believe, the fbi is in getting whatever
katherine russell knows? >> well, i think what they'd be looking for, for sure, is if he was practicing with explosives, if he went out in some rural area and was working with the explosives, then he might have clothes, shoes, jackets, back in the home that have the powder residue that matches the evidence used in the boston marathon bombings. so, that would be one key thing. >> we did see some dna evidence carried out. it was listed as dna taken out of the home today. >> that would be his skin or hair particles on the clothing or other articles that would be there to say that is his clothing and he was in that home. and if they find other material on that clothing, it would link him to it. >> the russians have now given a summary, shall we say, of that phone conversation they intercepted between the mother and, we believe, tamerlan tsarnaev back in 2011. they didn't give it to the u.s. at that time, only now.
why? >> i think the main reason here is that the russian perspective of this back in 2011 was not, in their opinion, that tsarnaev was going to attack the united states and give us everything to protect ourselves, it was their worry he was maybe putting together an organization here or fundraising here to go to russia and attack russians in russia, and i think that's why when the fbi does their very thorough investigation, in this case, and asked the russians, we're going to have to close it, do you have more. and asked them twice, they don't have anymore. at that point they are satisfied for that purposes if he's not meeting with terrorists in the u.s. or not fundraising in the u.s., they can track him when he gets there. from their standpoint, they had enough information to be done with it. secondly, the letter that comes to the cia from the russians is the same letter that went to the fbi. this is just that they
shotgunned out requests. that commonly happens where they send multiple requests to multiple agencies. >> when the fbi asked for more details, they didn't get more details at that time. that's one of the reasons they said there's no evidence of wrong doing on his part, and it was over. >> exactly. what we still don't know is why were they monitoring the mother in the first place? >> is the mother potentially -- could she be charged as a co-conspirator, if you will, if that phone conversation had her talking about jihad with her son? >> i think merely talking about it may be weak evidencery-wise, but if she was saying son, when you arrive, i'm going to be hooking you up with so and so and that person is going to train you. then, yes, she's conspireing with him to commit the crime that he ends up committing. >> tom fuentes, thanks very much. >> you're welcome, wolf. coming up, their lives have
been turned upsidedown, and many of the most serious victims of the boston bombings are facing long recoveries and massive medical bills. plus, the reaction to the first american male professional athlete announcing he's gay. [ jackie ] it's just so frustrating... ♪ the middle of this special moment and i need to run off to the bathroom. ♪ i'm fed up with always having to put my bladder's needs ahead of my daughter. ♪ so today, i'm finally talking to my doctor
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>> reporter: we're talking about astronomical costs, wolf. donations are pouring, in but they will not cover what the costs are being, you know, what these astronomical costs that these people will suffer. consider this, $50,000 in medical expenses alone for those who lost limbs. i'm just being conservative here. that depends how long you'll have to stay in the hospital. that doesn't include rehabilitation that could last for years. hopefully just months, but many people will have to undergo years of rehabilitation. also, it doesn't include lost income. some of these people will never be able to return to the jobs they once had, they'll just have to do something else because they are not physically able to go back to do what they once did. add to those costs the costs of, let's say, a prosthetic leg. a basic prosthetic leg costs $10,000. i would want the best prosthetic leg out there if i were those people, and i'm sure they do too, but they cost up to $100,000, and that's not a
one-time cost, because prosthetic legs have to be replaced every three to five years. i'm sure you've heard of this one fund set up in boston, by the city of boston, also the state of massachusetts. it's collecting private donations and a lot of money has poured into that fund. to date, $27 million from 75 donors. the average donation is $65, but i talked to the administrator of that fund and he said $27 million will probably not be enough to cover all these people that will lose in the future, wolf. >> let's hope they raise a whole lot more money. carol, thanks very much for that report. up next, new information about the latest man accused of sending poisonous letters to president obama and other officials. details of his feud with a previous suspect, that so-called elvis impersonator. ♪
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a mississippi man accused of mailing ricen-tainted letter to president obama and other officials has been ordered held without bond until a preliminary hearing later this week. john is joining us from oxford, mississippi, with the very latest. what are you learning, john? >> reporter: well, wolf, james everett dutschke showed up in court today, the judge asking him if he understood the charges against him, possession, stockpiling, and producing a biotoxin identified as ricin. dutschke said yes, he did. he did not enter a plea. the entire proceeding lasted
about eight minutes. as you said, dutschke held without bond on the grounds he is both a danger to the community and a flight risk. as you mentioned, all of this stemming from the ricin-spiked letters sent to the president, mississippi senator, and a judge. another man, as you recall, was originally arrested on the charges. he claimed he was framed. the charges were later dropped against him. he's an elvis impersonator. we understand there certainly is a connection between both dutschke and curtis, but it's very, very hazy at this point. we believe by thursday at this hearing when the government affidavit is unsealed we'll have a much better idea of the case against dutschke and the relationship of these two men. wolf? >> all right, thanks very much, in oxford, mississippi. this is cnn breaking news. >> i want to go back to our crime and justice correspondent
joe johns. he's getting word now, joe, about some dna found on parts of one of these bombs. what are you learning? >> this is just an update to the story we did a few minutes ago that federal investigators appeared to take dna samples from the home of katherine russell, the widow of tamerlan tsarnaev. turns out law enforcement forces, two law enforcement sources, tell cnn that female dna was discovered on a fragment of one of the boston marathon bombs, and they are, obviously, trying to eliminate who that is. this is sort of a needle in a haystack, we're told. it doesn't really mean that it's this positive of anything quite frankly, wolf. bottom line, they want to find out where this dna came from and if possibly it belonged to someone in the tsarnaev household there, but even if they did find, say, a hair or other dna, it doesn't necessarily tell them a whole lot more. again, authorities looking for
the owner, if you will, of the dna found on a fragment of the boston bomb. wolf? >> if they find out, they do know this female dna, so that potentially could be significant. thanks very much, joe, for that. joe johns reporting. it's a first in the world of professional sports in the united states, an active male player revealing he's gay. reaction is pouring into the landmark announcement by the nba center jason collins, we just learned president obama called collins to offer his support and congratulations on his courage. c cnn's lisa sylvester is coming in with more. lisa, tell our viewers what happened. >> wolf, we should mention also michelle obama, the first lady, also tweeted to jason collins, quote, we've got your back. president clinton said he's proud to call him his friend and there's been a lot of powerful reaction to an essay collins
wrote sharing his personal story to the world. jason collins has played in 12 nba seasons for teams in new jersey, minnesota, atlanta, boston, and washington, but it's not his stats that people will remember him people will remember him for. rather these three sentences. quote, i'm a 34-year-old nba center. i'm black. and i'm gay. collins is the first gay athlete currently playing in one of the top four u.s. major league sports to come out. in an essay in "sports illustrated" magazine he writes how he kept it a secret for decades, even getting engaged at one point. he answers the question, why now? he has simply been tired of living a lie. with the u.s. supreme court debating the issue of gay marriage, he said it was time to come forward. quote, i wish i wasn't the kid in the classroom, raising his hand and saying, i'm different. if i had my way, someone else would have already done this. nobody has, which is why i'm raising my hand. collins' agent approached "sports illustrated" about
publishing his story. >> i have no doubt there will be others. how many, i couldn't say. i wouldn't be surprised at all before the end of the calendar year if we see several athletes come out. only because even before we had heard about the possibility speaking with jason, we knew that this day was coming. >> collins is a free agent. he has most recently been playing with the washington wizards. the team president put out this statement. quote, we are extremely proud of jason and support his decision to live his life proudly and openly. the accolades continue. kobe bryant tweeting proud of jason collins. don't south uffocate who you ar because of the ignorance of others. president bill clinton, whose daughter went to school with jason collins tweeted i'm proud to call jason collins a friend and martina navratilova tweeted well done, jason collins.
you are a brave man. and a big man at that. 1981 was the year for me, 2013 is the year for you. >> it will be less and less of a big deal, which is exactly what we wanted. >> reporter: the white house was also asked to weigh in. >> we view that as another example of the progress that has been made and the evolution that has been taking place in this country. >> reporter: it is a watershed moment. what happens next for collins' career and how he will be treated by others away from the public eye is not known. but his former coach, boston celtics, doc rivers, compared this moment to jackie robinson, number 42 breaking down another sports barrier. rivers tweeting, quote, if you have learned anything from jackie robinson, it is that teammates are always the first to accept. it will be society who has to learn tolerance. >> not all of jackie robinson's teammates, though, were totally accepting. there was one negative tweet, mike wallace of the miami dolphins quote all these beautiful women in the world and
guys want to mess with other guys. that tweet was later deleted and the team organization sent out a tweet saying that is tha does not reflect its views. collins sent out this tweet. quote, all the support i have received today is truly inspirational. i knew that i was choosing the road less traveled but i am not walking it alone. a lot of people using the words courageous. i think that probably sums it up. >> of four major sports, he is the first one, the first one as an active player. not after retirement but as an active player to acknowledge he is gay. it is a courageous step. >> a lot of people are saying we hope we would get to the point where this isn't a news story at all, but it's commonplace and doesn't even raise any headlines. the fact is that this is a moment where we are in our country and it is a big moment for our country. >> let's see how he's accepted by his teammates. thanks very much. coming up, feeding a camel is all fun and games. that is, until you try to put a
toddler's whole head in its mouth. what's going on? we have a video now coming up. ♪ ♪ [ female announcer ] nothing gets you going quite like the power of quaker oats. today is going to be epic. quaker up. very logical thinker. (laughs) i'm telling you right now, the girl back at home would absolutely not have taken a zip line in the jungle. (screams) i'm really glad that girl stayed at home. vo: expedia helps 30 million travelers a month find what they're looking for. one traveler at a time.
watch out. it will eat all your treats. and, if krur not careful, might try to eat your toddler as well. here is cnn's jeanne moos. >> reporter: it was a family just horsing around with a camel. >> it's not a horsey, baby. it's a camel. >> reporter: they had just finished handing out their last treat at a drive-thru zoo near branson, missouri. and their almost 3-year-old daughter, alea, had a constant case of the giggles. the camel, still looking for more treats did its best impersonation of jaws. her dad calmly pushed the camel away. >> i don't have any more, buddy. >> when the camel persisted, they took off. but many youtube viewers weren't giggling. great, moronic parents placing their child in harm's way.
>> no, no, we didn't feel that with an when we were there. >> not at all. >> even when it was happening, he control of the car. >> reporter: aleah says she wasn't scared and calls the camel her friend. >> did you want to take that camel home? >> i did. >> reporter: she says the horsey felt soft, eating her hair. we've seen this happen before with much deadlier animals but with one big difference. who could forget the lioness at the oregon zoo that reacted to young jack as if he were what zoo keepers call a prey item. he did resemble a zebra. aleah's mom teaches baby sign language. >> can you sign camel? good job. humps of the camel's back. >> it left its own design on the steering wheel. >> ew, gross. >> look what it did to our
steering wheel. >> reporter: shows just how stupid some people can be versus i love this! when the parents don't freak out about every mishap and fall, children learn not to freak out, too. aleah sure wasn't freaked. she was tickled when the camel tinkled, blocking their way. for aleah, it was just a hump in the road. >> did he have good breath or stinky breath? >> stinky breath. >> reporter: jeanne moos, cnn, new york. >> jeanne moos, thank you. you can always follow us, what's going on here in the situation room. follow us on twitter. you can tweet me any time you want @wolfblitzer or the show @cnnsitroom and make an important contribution to those in boston who need some help right now. go to cnn.com/impact. you can impact your