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Massacre Suspect in Court; Penn State Hit With Sanctions; Attorney for Shooting Suspect's Family Speaks
Aired July 23, 2012 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Top of the hour. I'm Brooke Baldwin.
He didn't say a word. He didn't look at anymore in the courtroom. I'm talking about James Holmes, the suspect here in one of the worst mass shootings in U.S. history, appearing, here he is, in court this morning for the very first time he allegedly opened fire in that Colorado movie theater. He wasn't arraigned. He wasn't charged. That is set to happen one week from today.
But you see him, watch his eyes sitting there quietly next to his public defender. Now, victims' family members they stared at him but he did not. He barely, barely did much other than open and close his eyes, almost looked like he nodded off at points, a number of puzzling expressions. You can see him here crossed his face. At times he looked blank. Other times groggy.
Perhaps there might have even been concern in his eyes at some points. After just a couple of minutes he was taken back to solitary confinement without bond. Holmes is accused of killing 12 people and wounding 58 others at a midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises."
Eight victims, they remain in critical condition and police say they caught him outside, not a fight. He was wearing a gas mask and body armor from head to toe.
Jim Spellman in Aurora for us. He was actually inside the courtroom when Holmes appeared.
Jim, it was tough to get read on him during the appearance. I don't know if he was nodding off. I was just talking to a guest, Dave Cullen, who wrote the book on Columbine. He said we shouldn't be talking and reading too much into how he looked, but just on a superficial level here, how did he appear to you?
JIM SPELLMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You can't help but have this almost buildup to what this guy will actually look like. We have only seen a couple of photos.
The big question is would his hair be actually dyed red? We knew that some police sources said that, but none of our actually witnesses saw it because he had a helmet on and gas mask allegedly. That was the first thing I think on everybody's mind in there.
When he walked in, it was dead silent. Nobody made any noise and nobody called out, the observers Nothing like that. I was struck immediately by how lost he looked. He was slumped over and of course he was shackled at the ankles and at the wrist, so he walked with that shuffle. But he just looked defeated and lost and kind of sad looking, I would say.
I didn't see any kind of swagger or anything like that in his demeanor, Brooke.
BALDWIN: You mentioned he was shackled at his arms and legs. He also appeared to be wearing some sort of bulletproof vest, it looks like, under the jail, the gown here. I know he was taken through this underground tunnel between the jail and the courthouse. Police, like any other sort of higher-profile case, they are being very careful with him.
SPELLMAN: They had a lot of security. The journalists that were allowed to go through into the courtroom, we had to go through two layers of metal detectors and get our credentials in yesterday. They went through an extensive process of that.
There were two deputies right by his side as he entered and they stood right near him the whole time. And there were five other deputies in the courtroom making sure that he was completely safe. And as you mentioned, he had this vest on underneath his prison sort of scrubs style uniform.
There was no -- we haven't had any kind of perp walk or anything. Because like you mentioned he's in solitary confinement in the jail. It's right here adjacent to the courthouse. He was able to go through this underground thing and then use a series of back hallways and emerge straight out of the back side of the courtroom, never interacted with the public or anybody else during the whole day.
BALDWIN: Jim Spellman for us in Colorado. We will be hearing from the attorney from the James Holmes family in San Diego. That will happen in a little less than an hour from now. Watch for that. We will bring that for you then.
I want to talk a little bit more about this with CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin, because, Sunny, let's just talk a little bit more about -- Jim is right. A lot of people were waiting to see if he would have that flame red dyed hair. He did. Odd expressions. We can call them odd. It was a brief stop there in court. What did you take away from it?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: It's interesting, Brooke, because the legal question at this point in this proceedings and we know there will be many proceedings is whether or not he's competent, not insane, but competent to stand trial.
Does he understand the nature of the charges against him? The judge was talking about first-degree. He's held on a non-bondable offense. He can't get out. He's held in solitary confinement. Does he understand the nature of the charges against him and can he help his defense team in his defense?
Can he aid? I saw someone, if he's not malingering, if he's not feigning, that seems incompetent at this time to stand trial. He was sort of very out of it. That could be medication. Perhaps it's he hasn't slept. Who knows, but I saw a very odd looking defendant.
And the first thing that came to my mind was, OK, maybe there's mental illness here. But that's something for a later date. That's something at trial. That's an insanity defense. But right now, for this type of proceeding, can he even be found competent to stand trial?
BALDWIN: So, here is the but and to your point about the thought, of course, through a lot of people's minds, including the victims' families, telling CNN today who were court they thought it was all an act, this whole dazed demeanor totally an act. We don't know. We don't know. But are we seeing the beginning, possibly -- you mentioned competency -- might we see the beginning of an insanity defense here?
HOSTIN: I think that's probably the only defense here. We have got so many witnesses in a case like this.
He was caught basically red-handed with the weapons in front of his car dressed as you mentioned before with the gas mask and a helmet and body armor. The only defense I could see in a case like this would be the insanity defense.
But to your point about whether or not he was malingering and feigning incompetence, I that's very interesting, because we know this is a very bright person, someone who graduated with a neuroscience degree, studied for his Ph.D. before he withdrew, someone who is not cooperating with the police investigation, who asked for an attorney.
That tells me, wow, if you're asking for an attorney you do understand the nature of events and you understand the nature of the charges against you. There could be something to these folks that think this is a very smart person who has the wherewithal not to cooperate and to ask for an attorney and yet sits in court and appears to be incompetent.
Who knows? But I suspect that this is going to be an issue forward. The court is probably going to try to determine whether or not he is competent. I think we will be hearing something about his mental state.
BALDWIN: We will wait and see. Colorado is a death penalty state. And apparently they have only executed one person since 1976. He gets charged and that's so many steps down the road. But that's else I know people are already bringing up.
Sunny Hostin, thank you very much.
Again, within the next hour, we are expecting to hear from James Holmes' family. They live in California. They have hired an attorney here. We're being told they will release a statement sort of vis-a- vis this attorney in a little less than an hour of so. We will take that.
More news unfolding right now. Take a look.
BALDWIN: They're calling it wakeup call. Penn State is not too big to fail. The NCAA just dropped the hammer, but the question is, is the hit hard enough?
I'm Brooke Baldwin. The news is now.
(voice-over): The murder trial begins for the police officer with dead and missing wives.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you think she's ever coming back?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have no idea.
BALDWIN: Plus, as fears grow over Syria's chemical weapons, a new offer for President Bashar al-Assad, step down and you will be guaranteed safety.
BALDWIN: The other shoe has fallen on Penn State today.
Just one day after the school removed that massive statue of Joe Paterno, the NCAA has hit the school with sanctions just today, including fines totaling $60 million, also the loss of 111 gridiron wins all the way back from 1998 onward, also the loss of 20 football scholarships a year for the next four season.
And I talked last hour with one of Paterno's former players about the shame brought by this whole sex abuse scandal involving former coach Jerry Sandusky. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He did a lot for me. He was a father figure. He never lied to me. He always told me the truth.
That being said, I don't really know what went on behind closed doors. I don't know how much information he did or did not know. It's hard for me to comment on that. I can only talk about my personal experience with him. I can understand how the Paterno family would be very upset by the sanctions that have come down and basically wiping out a lot of his life's work.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: CNN's Mark McKay is with us now live from NCAA headquarters there in Indianapolis.
And, Mark, that was Matt Hahn (ph) who we were talking to. And as he alluded to there, we're hearing now from the family of late coach Joe Paterno and they're not at all happy, as you can imagine, about the sanctions that were leveled against the university this morning or what become of the Paterno legacy. Not at all thrilled.
MARK MCKAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Not at all.
We have a statement that was released a little earlier by the Paterno family. It reads in part, I'm quoting here, "Punishing past, present and future students of the university because of Sandusky's crimes does not serve justice. This is not a fair or thoughtful action. It's a panicked response to the public's understandable revulsion of what Sandusky did."
You mentioned the impact on the late Joe Paterno's legacy. You mentioned the wins vacated by the football program between the years of 1998 and 2011. That's 112 victories the football program have had to vacate now, meaning the late Joe Paterno is no longer the winningest coach in college football.
BALDWIN: Mark McKay, thank you.
Who is now with those wins taken away the winningest coach? He is Bobby Bowden. He's joining me on the phone now from Tallahassee, Florida. He's a former head football coach of the Florida State Seminoles.
I just have to first ask you, now, with the NCAA sanctions, with the fact that those wins for Paterno from 1998 on are wiped out, you are now the winningest coach in major college history. How does that sit with you?
BOBBY BOWDEN, FORMER COLLEGE OF COACH: I was playing golf this morning, teed it up about 9:00. I had heard nothing and after we played about nine holes somebody came out on the golf course with about four or five phone calls for me to call. And I said, why? And they told me about the NCAA coming down on Penn State.
I'm not rejoicing. My family is not rejoicing. I don't think -- I really don't think anybody can until this thing is settled., until those young men have had their say-so and that thing is settled, if they can ever get it settled. I think until then nobody can be joyful about it. What happened, happened.
BALDWIN: Coach, what do you make of the sanctions today? We're talking about 20 fewer scholarships over the course of four years, $60 million fine. We just mentioned the wins taken away back to 1998. Fair?
BOWDEN: I guess they felt like with the extent of what happened with Sandusky and the way it was handled, I guess they felt like they had to come down hard.
I didn't know whether they would get involved or not or to what extent they would get involved. I didn't expect them to take away that many games. They took 12 away from me one time.
BALDWIN: When they took those 12, when you faced sanctions some years ago, coach Bowden, what was that like?
BOWDEN: I was upset. I was upset. We had something happen I had absolutely nothing to do with. It was something that we discovered, not them, not the NCAA and we reported it. We reported it and we fired the people involved. We suspended 25 boys for four games, which we lost about three of them.
I always enjoyed the competition with Joe. But when that happened, I said that game is over. And so, anyway, I was very upset with it. But what they do, they do.
BALDWIN: Coach Bowden, what do you make of the statue, the Joe Paterno statue being taken down off campus yesterday?
BOWDEN: I said early publicly -- somebody had asked me -- that I thought it ought to be taken down.
Here's why. Because I know that every time you play a ball game, you will have 100,000 people there and I know the cameras will come down on that statue and they ain't going to talk about Joe's wins. They won't talk about all those games he's won. They're going to talk about Sandusky, Sandusky, Sandusky.
I would hate for my family to be there and have to hear this over and over and over, and even the people at Penn State. That's why I said that. But I also said whatever the Paterno family would want is what would be fine with me. So, anyway, that was my thinking on that.
BALDWIN: Bobby Bowden, I have one more for you. You certainly built a legacy at FSU. Paterno was seen to have been building a legacy at Penn State. Do they ever reach that sort of model they had before, academics, football, tradition? Is Penn State as we knew it gone for good?
BOWDEN: Oh, no, I don't think so. No. No.
There's too much good there. You had a segment or something bad. But there's too much good there. That's too great of a university. They just got to rebuild. They have got to rebuild their reputation. They will do it. I hope all those boys stay there that are up there and fight their way back through this thing.
We all face problems during our lifetime. This is the biggest one I ever heard of. But there's no doubt in my mind. Hey, SMU came back. SMU came back.
BALDWIN: All right, coach Bobby Bowden, thanks for picking up the phone and calling in. We appreciate it.
BOWDEN: Thank you.
BALDWIN: CNN has learned the Pentagon is extremely concerned about what Syria is saying regarding its chemical weapons. All of this comes as Bashar al-Assad gets an offer, leave now and you will be guaranteed safety.
BALDWIN: Well, how is this for reassurance? Syria said today it will not use chemical weapons against its own people. As for potential invaders, they say that is altogether different. This is according to the government in Damascus.
This rebellion against the Syrian government now has spread to the country's largest city. That is Aleppo. You see the fire. Rebels around a burning tank here that was apparently captured from the Syrian armed forces. In the capital city of Damascus, it is quieter today than it was last week. State-run Syrian television says troops sent to neighborhoods seized by the rebels are reasserting control.
The Arab League, it used to take its cues straight from Damascus, but after a weekend meeting in Qatar, an Arab League tells CNN the group will offer "safe exit" to the leader of Syria, Bashar al-Assad, to try to coax him into resigning and fleeing.
I want to go straight to Barbara Starr. She's at the Pentagon.
So, Barbara, what the Syrians are saying is we won't use chemical weapons on our own people, but any outside forces that might intervene, that's a different matter. What are the folks there at the Pentagon saying about that?
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is a huge concern now across Washington, Brooke.
The Israelis are saying that if they see chemical weapons on the move, they will consider it a threat and they might do something about it. So, suddenly, within just a few days here, everybody is going back and forth about chemical weapons. Until now, the administration had been very firm that the chemical weapons were under Syrian military control and they didn't see a problem there now.
Now a lot of people worried about it. I want you to have a listen to what the State Department had to say earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VICTORIA NULAND, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESWOMAN: Any talk about any use of any kind of a weapon like that in this situation is horrific and chilling. The Syrian regime has a responsibility to the world, has a responsibility first and foremost to its own citizens to protect and safeguard those weapons. And that kind of loose talk just speaks to the kind of regime that we're talking about.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: So, the U.S. has been saying here at the Pentagon, across Washington that anything about Syria's chemical weapons, any use, any talk of using them unacceptable, use of them of course a red line.
But here is a dilemma. What do you do about it? How do you stop them ahead of time if you start to see those weapons on the move? Syria maintains a very robust air defense system thought to be quite capable of shooting down any airplanes from other countries that might enter its airspace to try and do something about those weapon sites -- Brooke.
BALDWIN: It's a good question. I'm going ask my next question.
Barbara Starr, thank you.
Joining me now from Washington, Andrew Tabler, senior fellow at the Arab Politics Program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. He's author of "In the Lion's Den: An Eyewitness Account of Washington's Battle with Syria."
Andrew Tabler, welcome back.
ANDREW TABLER, FELLOW, WASHINGTON INSTITUTE FOR NEAR EAST POLICY: Thank you.
BALDWIN: Let me begin with Barbara's point there talking about the Pentagon and talking about concerns with the chemical weapons. How would one stop them ahead of time?
TABLER: Well, probably you would bomb them if they are on the move. Of course it depends on where they're going. That's been a concern for the last couple of weeks about what is the regime doing and where are they moving them to.
There's have been a lot of reports and speculation they're moving them toward the Alawite coast, which is the -- the Alawites are the sect from which the Assad regime hails.
Because Washington is really in a dilemma here. If that material gets into the hands of a rump regime in Damascus that's contracting, it can be used as a deterrent in the future to set up some kind of independent entity on the Syrian coast. It can also fall into the hands of the rebels along the way. Either way, it's not in U.S. national security interests and it's a national security threat.
BALDWIN: Andrew, let me back you up then for a second, because by the government, by Assad saying he will not use chemical weapons against his own people, is this his way of demonstrating he learned a lesson that Hussein did not learn?
TABLER: It's a good question.
Bashar al-Assad is a completely erratic person. It's very hard to predict his movements. I have tried for the last 12 years. It's very difficult to track him. I think though that what's interesting about this is by saying he's not going to use them against his own people, that's great.
But what he is saying is, I will use this against anyone that comes into my country. That essentially is threatening any countries which are looking at intervention under any circumstances. That would include the United States.
BALDWIN: Andrew, let's say -- I'm going to throw you a hypothetical. Let's say you're Bashar al-Assad, who you say you have been studying for 12 years, so you're the guy to ask.
You didn't want the job in the first place. You got it because your brother died. You look around at the guys who dug in, Saddam Hussein, Moammar Gadhafi, didn't go very well for either of them. Why not cut a deal? Why not cut a deal and let Syria move on without you?
TABLER: Because it's about the survival politically of his sect, not just him.
That's the difference between Syria and Egypt and Tunisia and even Yemen. There, the military or an entity can act in the national interest and oust the ruling family. The ruling family holds on and things continue along the way.
In Syria, it's more about the existence of a minority as a whole, unfortunately. Even if he might want to leave and cut a deal, I don't necessarily think that his supporters would let him. And then whoever comes after him would be just the perpetuation of that regime, unless of course they had a bigger political deal to cut with the opposition.
I don't even know if that's possible now, given the bloodletting. We have almost 18,000 people killed and no end in sight. It's just very hard to know how this settles down any time soon.
BALDWIN: Andrew Tabler, we will keep the conversation going. Thank you so much for us in Washington again.
BALDWIN: In just about 35 minutes, we are expecting to hear from the family of the movie massacre suspect, the suspect gunman here, James Holmes. That's going to happen.
But, first, my next guest spent years researching the killers in the Columbine massacre. And he is now warning everyone, do not jump to conclusions about the suspect here in the movie theater shooting. In fact, he says the killer in these cases is rarely who he seems. Don't miss this conversation.
BALDWIN: The massacre in Aurora, Colorado, immediately brings to mind yet another shooting spree, the 1999 Columbine killings, just about 20 miles down the road from that movie theater.
Dave Cullen wrote "Columbine." It's perhaps the definitive account of what happened that day, that attack, and he's warning everyone now against jumping to conclusions after Holmes' bizarre courtroom appearance today.
DAVE CULLEN, AUTHOR, "COLUMBINE": It could be all sorts of things. I mean, it could be something as simple, some people asked, you know, whether he had medication, but it could be also be, you know, incredibly, highly stressed. Maybe he hasn't slept in two or three days.
BALDWIN: We don't know and that's your point.
CULLEN: Exactly. We have no idea, so when we start making assessments, that's when we get in trouble.
BALDWIN: OK, well, I won't sit here and ask you to pontificate on what "strange" means in your book, so I want to move on. I want to quote, actually, part of your op-ed.
You wrote this. "Over the next several days, you will be hit with evidence fragments suggesting one motive or another. Don't believe any one detail. The killer is rarely who he seems."
And you say, Dave, that is precisely the kind of mistakes journalists, including yourself, made in 1999 with Columbine.
CULLEN: Exactly. And we take little bits of fragments of information and we try to put it together into a whole. Now, think about your life. You know, say we interviewed, you know, eight or ten different people from your life, one of your parents, sibling, an aunt, people who knew you in high school.
BALDWIN: People who I haven't talked to in 11 years.
CULLEN: Right. Exactly. And even people who do know you. They're still going to all have different -- you know, they see you in different capacities and different moods and some people like you more than others, right?
We all have our flaws and some people you probably irritate. I'm sure I irritate some people. And those people are going to have a certain opinion that's going to be different.
You know, police -- like in Columbine, they interviewed more than 2,000 people. I'm sure they're going to do that here, too, interviewed every one in the school. But once they send out huge teams and interview every one imaginable, they can get a pretty clear picture of the full picture of your life.
But when we're getting now little bits and pieces, this guy or that woman who met him at different times, that's little bits and it's not enough to go on. If we interviewed one of your neighbors, you know, who knows what they would say about you?
BALDWIN: Well, hopefully, half decent things, but you never know and that's precisely, I think, to your point. But to get the whole picture, you know, I want to talk to you about Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold in Columbine because you write in your piece, you remind us that Eric Harris was the cold-blooded psychopath, but it was Klebold who was an extreme depressive and you base much of that on these pages that they write.
And, if you will, hold up the heart, Dave, because this is the Klebold -- I had forgotten this -- that he had -- here it is, the heart. He had big fluffy hearts that he would write in his journals and you said his biggest enemy was himself. He wasn't bullied.
CULLEN: Yeah. I don't know if that one is coming through, but there's 10 pages of these in his journal. And, you know, the phrase, "I love you," stenciled across them.
Love was really the most common theme in his entire journal. Now, it wasn't the only theme. There's lots and lot of anger in there and he's sort of at war with himself, so he's very conflicted, but that's just the point.
It's a complex person who's having a lot of different emotions. But he's kind of a sweet, loving kid. He mentions suicide on the very first page, two years before it happened. He was dealing with a lot of pain and had incredibly low self-esteem and was looking for love.
And then he got involved, unfortunately, with a psychopath who drew him into his plan. But more of the killers, the psychopaths, are the exception. They are quite rare. It actually usually turns out to be deeply depressed people like Dylan Klebold.
BALDWIN: Dave Cullen, thank you. Going to hear from the president here in 60 seconds. Be right back.
BALDWIN: And let's just go ahead and show you. Let's pull up the live picture. You can see we're waiting to hear from the president who is being introduced right now. Looks like we're close.
He is speaking. Here, he is. This is the annual convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, speaking here in Reno, Nevada. Take a listen.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Thank you so much. Please, please, everybody have a seat. Commander De Noyer, thank you for your introduction and your service in Vietnam and on behalf of America's veterans.
I want to thank your executive director, Bob Wallace, your next commander who I look forward to working with, John Hamilton, and to Gwen Rankin, Leeanne Lemley and the entire Ladies Auxiliary. Thank you for your patriotic service to America.
I stand before you, as our hearts still ache over the tragedy in Aurora, Colorado. Yesterday, I was in Aurora with families whose loss is hard to imagine, with the wounded who were fighting to recover, with a community and a military base in the midst of their grief.
They told me of the loved ones they lost and here today it's fitting to recall those who wore our nation's uniform -- Staff Sergeant Jesse Childress, an Air Force Reservist, 29-years old, a cyber-specialist who loved sports, the kind of guy, said a friend, who would help anybody.
Petty Officer, Third Class John Larimer, 27-years old, who, like his father and grandfather before him, joined the Navy and who is remembered as an outstanding shipmate.
Rebecca Wingo, 32-years old, a veteran of the Air Force, fluent in Chinese, who served as a translator, a mother whose life will be an inspiration to her two little girls.
And Jonathan Blunk from Reno, just 26-years old, but a veteran of three Navy tours whose family and friends will always know that in that theater he gave his own life to save another.
These young patriots were willing to serve in faraway lands, yet they were taken from us here at home and yesterday I conveyed to their families a message on behalf of all Americans. We honor your loved ones, we salute their service, and, as you summon the strength to carry on and keep bright their legacy, we stand with you as one united American family.
Veterans of Foreign Wars, in you, I see the same shining values, the virtues that make America great. When our harbor was bombed, when fascism was on the march, when the fighting raged in Korea and Vietnam, when our country was attacked on that clear September morning, when our forces were sent to Iraq, you answered your country's call because you know what Americans must always remember. Our nation only endures because there are patriots who protect it.
In the crucible of battle, you are tested in ways the rest of us will never know. You carry in your hearts the memory of the comrades you lost for you understand that we must honor our fallen heroes not just on Memorial Day, but all days. And when an American goes missing or is taken prisoner, we must do everything in our power to bring them home.
Even after you took off the uniform, you never stopped serving. You took care of each other, fighting for the benefits and care you had earned. You've taken care of the generations that followed, including our newest veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan.
On behalf of all our men and women in uniform and on behalf of the American people, I want to thank you, VFW. Thank you for your outstanding work.
Of course, some among you, our Vietnam veterans, didn't always receive that thanks, at least not on time. This past Memorial Day, I joined some you have at the wall to begin the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam war.
It was another chance to say what should have been said all along. You did your duty and you made us proud and, as this 50th anniversary continues, I'd ask all our Vietnam vets to stand or raise your hand as we say thank you and welcome home.
BALDWIN: President Obama. Remember those pictures, not too long ago, standing at the wall, commending the veterans of the Vietnam war as it is the 50th anniversary.
Here he is speaking at the annual convention there in Reno, Nevada, of the VFW. Mentioning, of course, appropriately, at the top, honoring those two young lives lost, members of the military who served overseas only to be killed in senseless violence early Friday morning.
A rare moment for President Obama and Governor Romney, both waking up in the city of San Francisco, actually, today. You see the president. They are both back on the campaign trail. In fact, Mitt Romney is going to be speaking at that VFW event tomorrow.
Bu today, they are talking economy. They are talking veterans' affairs. Mitt Romney just wrapped up a small business roundtable in Costa Mesa, California, and he accused President Obama of not giving enough support to small businesses.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MITT ROMNEY, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: ... just reminded me the other day that the president has a jobs council as well and this consists of leaders of various industries that come together to offer counsel and advice to the president.
He has not been able to find time in the last six months to meet with them. And I would suggest having more meetings like this and with his jobs council -- meet with you guys or his jobs council, it's like, why won't he meet with his jobs council?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Mitt Romney, again, in Costa Mesa, California.
We do want to turn our attention back to Aurora, Colorado, as the alleged movie massacre gunman goes to court this morning. We're minutes away from hearing from his family in San Diego, California. Stay tuned for that.
And this. Each week, CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta profiles innovators from really all walks of life, all walks of endeavor. The program is called "The Next List."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, before the iPad, I used to joke that I make useless programs.
But they're as useless as a song, a movie, a story, something like that.
And all of the sudden with the iPad, I could just go directly to people and say, check this thing out. We don't even have to label what it is. It's just called "Gravilux." It's called "Bubble Harp." See if you like it and, you know, all of the sudden they did.
BALDWIN: Take a look at this scene. This is Anaheim, California, where protesters are reacting to a police shooting that killed a 24- year-old man. People were throwing rocks and bottles and setting dumpsters on fire. Police responded with pepper-spray and rubber bullets. In fact, a police dog got loose from a patrol car. Watch it as it approaches, runs toward someone there on the ground, bites at least one person on the ground there in his arm.
Anaheim Police chief John Welter apologized for the dog being loose and says the shooting is now under investigation. Additionally, here, CNN affiliate KABC reports that it's not known if the man who was killed was armed.
A catastrophic truck crash in South Texas takes the lives of 13 people, including two kids. There were 23 people inside this truck. This was a Ford F-250, according to Texas Highway Patrol, when it crashed.
Investigators still do not know why the truck left the road or how it slammed into these two trees. People who stopped to help started screaming because the scene was just so horrific. This is according to our affiliate, KHOU.
Christina Reyes was one of those folks who wanted to help. She just tried to do what she could.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRISTINA REYES, WITNESS: That was the first thing that came to my mind, was start to start counting bodies, start trying to check for pulses, trying to see who was not breathing, who was breathing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: The crash happened -- see the map -- the crash happened in the small town of Berclair. It's about a two hour's drive southeast of San Antonio. Troopers are still trying to confirm victim's identities, but they believe they are all illegal immigrants.
That F-250, according to Ford, seats six people at maximum. Six. One highway patrolman with 38 years on the job says he's never seen that many people crammed into one single vehicle.
The suspected gunman in the Colorado movie theater massacre made his very first appearance. Here he was in court this morning.
In just a couple of minutes, we're now expecting a statement from his family. Don't go anywhere. You'll want to hear that.
POPPY HARLOW, CNNMONEY.COM CORRESPONDENT: Hey, there, everyone. On "The Help Desk" today, we're talking about student loans, a very important issue, especially right now.
We've got Donna Rosato and Greg Olsen, our experts, with us to break it all down. Donna, take a listen to this question that we got.
UNIDENTIFIED: Why isn't the government doing more to give more student loans out, make it easier for students?
HARLOW: Do you have kids going to college?
UNIDENTIFIED: I have one in and one going into college next year.
HARLOW: So, for so many parents, students right now, it's getting harder and harder to afford college. What's your advice?
DONNA ROSATO, SENIOR WRITER, "MONEY": Well, certainly, you know, I think the person is right. When you have kids in college, it feels like it's insurmountable how much you have to pay.
The federal government actually has just as much aid out there, but with all the problems with the budget deficit, they haven't really been able to increase aid and there are more people applying for aid, so there's more competition for the dollars.
So, of course, you want to max out whatever federal aid you can get, but the federal government isn't the only place you can turn to for aid. A lot of states subsidize loans and that helps tremendously.
And there are other sources, too. This is a person who has kids in college, so the time for savings is done, but when you're in school, there's a lot you can do to cut your tab. You can live off-campus. You can work part-time.
And that's the thing I think people really need to realize. Don't take on so much debt.
HARLOW: What do you think about these four-year colleges where, all said and done, it's $40,000, $50,000 a year. Is it better to start out at the community college level for a few thousand dollars a year?
GREG OLSEN, PARTNER, LENOX ADVISORS: Oh, I'm a huge advocate of state school. I'm also an employer of over 200 people at my firm and kids going to state schools have become some of the best thought-leaders in our company.
So, a $17,000 education as opposed to a $50,000 education isn't necessarily worse. In fact, we think that these kids are fantastic, graduating from these state schools.
HARLOW: All right, guys. Thank you. We appreciate it.
And, folks, if you have an issue, a question that you want experts to tackle, you can upload a 30-second video with your "Help Desk" question to iReport.com.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BALDWIN: Any minute now, we are expecting a statement from the family of James Holmes. Earlier, he appeared in a Colorado courtroom for the first time since that movie theater massacre. His family lives in San Diego and it appears that none of them was in the courtroom today.
Casey Wian is live for us in San Diego right now where this statement will be happening live in a matter of minutes. Casey, do we even know who will be the one coming out and reading the statement?
CASEY WIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, we do, Brooke. It's going to be a woman named Lisa Damiani. She is a San Diego-based criminal defense attorney who has been hired in recent days to represent the parents of James Holmes, Arlene and Robert Holmes.
She was contacted through intermediaries, members of the local church that the family belongs to. The family is not expected to make an appearance here. In fact, the attorney would not disclose where the family is. She's very concerned, of course, about their safety at this time.
So, we are expecting a prepared statement any minute now. Also, she has said she will take questions from reporters and we have plenty of those.
BALDWIN: OK, so, a statement from the attorney, no family members. Quickly, Casey, do we know if Holmes has siblings? He has a sister, doesn't he?
WIAN: That's my understanding, but we don't know where she is either, Brooke.
BALDWIN: OK, Casey Wian, we'll be waiting for that and we'll take you live as soon as it happens there in San Diego, that statement from James Holmes' family vis-a-vis the attorney.
Now, this, his fourth wife, is still missing, but Drew Peterson goes on trial for the death of his third wife. We're "On the Case," next.
BALDWIN: Today, jury selection began in the trial of Drew Peterson. He's that ex-cop in Illinois whose fourth wife disappearance triggered that investigation into the death of his third wife. That third wife, Kathleen Savio, is the victim in today's murder trial.
Back in 2008, Peterson spoke with CNN host Larry King about the night of her death and initially the coroner ruled that this woman, who was divorced from Peterson, died by accident.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DREW PETERSON, CHARGED WITH KILLING HIS WIFE: The previous night, I believe it was, she failed to respond at the door to allow me to bring the children home. The children were with me for the weekend. That was unusual for her, so I started calling her on the phone and I started questioning with the neighbors and they were also alerted because it was unusual for her.
I had neighbors go into the house and they found her dead in the bathtub.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: I want to bring in CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin, bring her back in "On the Case." How tough is this going to be for prosecutors to prove?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I think it's a pretty difficult case actually for prosecutors to prove. Because remember, initially, as you just mentioned, this was ruled an accident by the coroners' office. And you also have the fact that a lot of the evidence is pretty old.
BALDWIN: Sunny Hostin, apologies, apologies, apologies, but we understand -- here it is. This is attorney for the Holmes family, the suspected gunman. Take a listen.
LISA DAMIANI, ATTORNEY FOR THE FAMILY OF JAMES HOLMES: To clarify a statement made by ABC media. I was awakened by a call from a reporter from ABC on July 20th, about 5:45 in the morning. I did not know anything about a shooting in Aurora at that time.
He asked if I was Arlene Holmes and if my son was James Holmes who lives in Aurora, Colorado. I answered, yes, you have the right person. I was referring to myself.
I asked him to tell me why he was calling and he told me about a shooting in Aurora. He asked for a comment. I told him I could not comment because I did not know if the person he was talking about was my son and I would need to find out.
This is a significant case for a lot of people, the victims, their families and what people are saying to the media ultimately is being heard by the district attorney in Colorado, by the defense attorneys, by the courts, by the public.
And it's important that individuals don't get hauled into court thinking that they're going to make certain statements and they have personal knowledge about things, when in fact they don't, because it wastes a lot of court time.
It's also important that a case of this significance be tried in the courthouse, in the courtroom, and not in the media. The process in Colorado is a bit different from the process here in California. Here in California, if someone is arrested for a crime, such as murder, the district attorney's office first files a complaint alleging what the charges are, and then files the complaint.
The first court appearance is an arraignment where the accused enters a plea of not guilty and thereafter a preliminary hearing takes place, where the court has to look at what evidence the prosecution has, and to make a determination as to whether there's probable cause to believe, number one, that a crime was committed, and, number two, that this person committed that crime.
If there's sufficient evidence to hold the person to the charges, then an information, a more normal document is filed, and the process starts again with another arraignment, and ultimately a trial by jury.
Sorry. In Colorado, the initial appearance is not the arraignment, but an advisement, bond return hearing. And at that time, the defendant is told what his rights are and, if charges have been filed, what those charges are.
Thereafter, there's a preliminary hearing similar to California. And then the arraignment happens after the preliminary hearing and ultimately a trial by jury. That's the process in Colorado, as I understand it.
Again, the family wants to reiterate that their hearts go out to the victims and their families. The Holmes family would like to maintain their privacy. So at this time, we will not be discussing James or his relationship to the family.
And we would respect courtesy in that regard. So thank you very much for your time.
DAMIANI: I don't think he was able to, no.
DAMIANI: They're doing as well as they can under the circumstances.
DAMIANI: You know, we haven't been looking at all of the news reports, so I really can't comment on that.
DAMIANI: That -- I can't comment on that either. Criminal defense attorneys understand the system a lot better than civil attorneys.
DAMIANI: I'm sorry?
DAMIANI: Throughout the process, throughout, all through the weekend when I was getting calls and also after I saw his appearance.
DAMIANI: I really can't comment on that. QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: I have no comment on that. I have no comment on their whereabouts. I don't think they would like the media to know where they
QUESTION: On the back of the car, there's a bumper sticker that (INAUDIBLE) that links to a Web site that is about depression, and addiction, self-abuse.
Clearly, that was there before the shooting. Can you tell me what that was about?
DAMIANI: I have no comment on that.
DAMIANI: I have no comments on their whereabouts. I don't think they would like the media to know where they are.
QUESTION: Can you tell us what their reaction was when they first heard their son's name and how are they coping?
DAMIANI: Well, I think Arlene Holmes' kind of statement clarifies that a bit as to how they reacted.
DAMIANI: I think everyone can imagine how they are feeling, anyone who has been a parent.
DAMIANI: Possibly. Possibly.
QUESTION: Have they been getting any offers?
DAMIANI: Not at this time.
DAMIANI: Right, because that's not exactly what she said. And I think that was the interpretation that the media were giving to that statement was that somehow, oh, I'm not surprised that this is the person. And that's not what she was saying.
QUESTION: Can you elaborate on that? Was she surprised? (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: I am not going to comment on that.
DAMIANI: I represent them.
QUESTION: I understand that. (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: Well, I was referred to them by another lawyer -- or they were referred to me by another lawyer.
QUESTION: So how are they coping?
DAMIANI: As I said, as well as anyone could under the circumstances.
QUESTION: Just back to the clarification (OFF-MIKE) She wants to make it clear that she wasn't saying she wasn't surprised?
QUESTION: Well, that's her statement. She felt it was very important for everyone to understand the sequence of events, and what he said, what she said and not misconstrue the situation.
QUESTION: What about some of the statements that have been made by his classmates or people that have been around? Have they absorbed those? (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: We really haven't been keeping track of everyone's statements. There's been a lot to deal with. So, we're not aware of all the statements. So it's hard for me to comment on such a general question.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) cooperate? The criminal investigators (OFF- MIKE) an investigation ongoing right now?
DAMIANI: Well, nobody from the Aurora Police Department has attempted to contact us for any purpose. So, presently, there is nobody asking for assistance. Additionally, at that time, there were other authorities here locally who we were talking to.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) Is that evidence in the case?
DAMIANI: I didn't see the box, so I don't know. I believe it was just personal items.
QUESTION: Do you know (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: The FBI.
DAMIANI: I don't understand that question. I'm a lawyer. Objection. Vague.
QUESTION: Nicely done.
DAMIANI: Do I know the prosecutor? Not personally, no. No.
DAMIANI: I have done work in Colorado, but in the federal system.
QUESTION: How concerned is the family that this (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: We have been told that that is highly likely that that's going to happen.
QUESTION: How concerned are they?
DAMIANI: Everyone is concerned.
DAMIANI: Who told me what?
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) likely this is a death penalty case?
DAMIANI: Well, nobody told me that. I just -- from what I know about the laws in Colorado, because it is a death penalty state. And, obviously, it is going to be murder one. And with a murder one charge, that's when someone can be facing the death penalty.
DAMIANI: I actually am in communication with them as well, yes.
QUESTION: Is the family concerned for their safety, their personal safety?
DAMIANI: I have concern for their safety.
QUESTION: Do they have concern for their safety?
QUESTION: Have James Holmes' parents accepted the fact their son has been charged correctly (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: Well, we haven't really gotten that far because at this time no charges have been formally filed.
DAMIANI: I'm sorry?
DAMIANI: I really can't comment on that.
DAMIANI: I'm sorry?
QUESTION: How closely is Mrs. Holmes following the developments in the case?
DAMIANI: Not very closely, no. QUESTION: You said you're concerned for their safety. Has anything happened that gives you reason for to be concerned?
DAMIANI: No. I have had experience with, you know, cases that have this much attention.
And so through my personal experience in dealing with those cases in the past, that's what causes me concern.
QUESTION: Can you comment about the many people who have known James and have said that he is extremely shy, introverted, doesn't communicate well and shows that he has some issues with relating to other people?
DAMIANI: Well, I don't know what specific statements you're referring to, so I can't comment on those.
DAMIANI: However, and I also -- I'm not going to comment as to what the family's experience has been with James, not at this time. Sorry.
QUESTION: We can't hear you back here.
DAMIANI: Oh, sorry.
QUESTION: That's OK.
QUESTION: What was your answer?
DAMIANI: To what.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) Maybe if you step back.
DAMIANI: Thank you for refreshing my memory on that question.
I was saying that I'm not sure what specific comments you're referring to, because we have not been keeping up with everybody's statements, so I can't comment on those. And the family has elected not to discuss James or their relationship with James at this time.
DAMIANI: As I said, at this point in time, the investigation is continuing.
So, whether or not it's premeditation or it's not premeditation, I think is left to the court system. I don't know what everybody has been saying and what interviews have been going on with the investigation. So I think it's premature to make any comments about that, when the investigation is still continuing.
DAMIANI: I can't comment about James or the relationship between James and his family at this time.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) Arlene was surprised (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: I don't believe she said that in her statement that I read. I read the statement. If you would like, I could read it again.
But I'm not going to comment about how she was feeling at the time at this time.
QUESTION: Is the family concerned that they are seen as culpable by the public?
DAMIANI: I'm sorry?
QUESTION: Is the family concerned that they might be felt that they're culpable for this crime by the public?
DAMIANI: I have not discussed that with them, so I can't comment on that.
DAMIANI: Yes, they do. He's their son.
DAMIANI: I'm sorry?
DAMIANI: Have I spoken with Chris Holmes? Yes.
DAMIANI: I really can't say anymore.
QUESTION: Have any of the victims and their families (OFF-MIKE) contact (OFF-MIKE)
DAMIANI: Not through me.
DAMIANI: I can't comment on that.
DAMIANI: James is being held there.
QUESTION: No, his father.
DAMIANI: Oh, I'm not going to comment on the whereabouts of the family.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) whether James is or has been estranged with his family?
DAMIANI: I'm not going to comment about that.
QUESTION: Can you comment about the family's reaction to seeing him in court today, his appearance, his demeanor? How did they feel about -- what was their sense of him after they saw him?
DAMIANI: At some point in time, we might be able to discuss that. But at this point in time, I think the family would like their privacy respected and don't really want to talk about that.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) the statement once more?
DAMIANI: Which -- oh, the statement?
DAMIANI: Sure, certainly.
This statement is to clarify a statement made by ABC media.
"I was awakened by a call from a reporter from ABC on July 20 about 5:45 a.m. I did not know anything about a shooting in Aurora at that time. He asked if I was Arlene Holmes and if my son was James Holmes, who lives in Aurora, Colorado. I answered, 'Yes, you have the right person.'
I was referring to myself. I asked him to tell me why he was calling, and he me about a shooting in Aurora. He asked for a comment. I told him I could not comment because I did not know if the person he was talking about was my son. And I would need to find out.
Thanks very much. And I'm -- you know, I will be accessible if anyone has further questions. That's pretty much all I can comment on at the present time.
DAMIANI: I'm sorry?
DAMIANI: Yes, I've been asked to speak on behalf of the Holmes family. I do not represent James Holmes.
DAMIANI: It was someone through their church.
DAMIANI: I really can't comment on that.
DAMIANI: I can't comment on that. But the pastor there, I spoke with the pastor there. And it's amazing how much support they are getting from their church. It's a very good -- it's a very good thing, I think.
DAMIANI: No, I'm not going to comment on that now.
DAMIANI: At this point in time, they really want their privacy respected. That may change. But at this moment and at that time, you know, they don't really want to talk about that. OK?
Thank you, everybody.