August 30th, 2013
04:05 AM ET

UK, U.N. and U.S. get jitters over Syria

Going it alone against the Syrian government is not what President Barack Obama wants, U.S. Secretary of State Chuck Hagel said Friday.  But that scenario is looking more and more likely.

A day earlier, the United States' closest ally, Great Britain, backed out of a possible coalition. A U.N. Security Council meeting on Syria ended in deadlock, and in the U.S. Congress, doubts about military intervention are making the rounds.  

Skeptics are invoking Iraq, where the United States government under President George W. Bush marched to war based on a thin claim that former dictator Saddam Hussein was harboring weapons of mass destruction.

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Filed under: David Cameron • Military • National security • NATO • Security • Syria • TV-Piers Morgan • TV-The Situation Room • U.S. • United Kingdom • War • World • World Update
Castro's victims resilient after torment
August 2nd, 2013
05:08 AM ET

Castro's victims resilient after torment

They were living in hell, and Ariel Castro did all he could to make sure they'd never escape.

He tied and chained them up, removed handles from doors and replaced them with padlocks. He rigged entrances to the house with makeshift alarms, threatened them with a gun and fed them only once a day.

He covered windows to keep them out of view and sunlight out of their rooms.

But Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus focused on the light at the end of the long, dark tunnel.

They nurtured the faith that they would one day be free. They clung to each other. They persevered and emerged from years of hell to find new life.

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Filed under: Cleveland • Content Partner • Courts • Crime • Health • Hostages • Justice • Ohio • Religion • TV-Anderson Cooper 360 • U.S. • Uncategorized • World Update
August 1st, 2013
04:02 AM ET

Snowden's lawyer: common ground with U.S.

Edward Snowden is in good health in Russia and his lawyer there is amenable to hammering out an ending that would satisfy all. This, according to his father's lawyer, Bruce Fein, who appeared on "Anderson Cooper 360" on Wednesday night.

He relayed the conversation he had with Russian lawyer Anatoli Cuchara.

"There may be a time, where it would be constructive to try and meet and see whether there can't be common ground that everyone agrees would advance the interest, the United States, Mr. Snowden, Lon, his father and the interest of Russia in trying to resolve this in a way that honors due process and the highest principles of fairness and civilization," Fein said.

Snowden is afraid he would not get a fair trial if he came back to the United States.

Full Story

April 4th, 2013
03:36 AM ET

Ware thinking of team, not leg

Kevin Ware's leg may be broken but not his spirit.

Not in the least bit.

Millions of television viewers cringed, when a bone punched through Ware's skin, protruding out of his leg after the University of Louisville guard landed hard from a jump to block a shot Sunday night.

It brought the Elite Eight game against the Duke Blue Devils to a screeching halt in the first quarter.

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Filed under: Christian • Georgia • Indiana • Kentucky • Religion • Sports • TV-CNN Newsroom • Uncategorized
January 8th, 2013
12:36 PM ET

Morgan on fiery Alex Jones interview: ‘Startling,’ ‘deluded’

Social media still is buzzing about last night’s explosive “Piers Morgan Live” interview with radio host Alex Jones. This morning, Morgan says the fiery exchange only helped his case for stricter gun control.

“I can’t think of a better advertisement for gun control than Alex Jones’ interview last night,” Morgan told “CNN Newsroom” late Tuesday morning. “It was startling, it was terrifying in parts, it was completely deluded. It was based on a premise of making Americans so fearful that they all rush out to buy even more guns.

“It showed no compassion whatsoever to the victims of gun shootings, and the kind of twisted way that he turned everything into this assault on the Second Amendment is exactly what the gun rights lobby people do. And it’s a lie. It cannot be allowed to continue.”

Jones, on Morgan’s show to talk about petition he started to deport Morgan back to the UK for expressing his views on gun control, warned that "1776 will commence again if you try to take our firearms." As of noon Tuesday, "Alex Jones" was trending on Twitter.

Read more about Jones' appearance on Morgan's show.

November 15th, 2012
08:44 AM ET

Petraeus: I did not give classified information to Broadwell

Ex-CIA chief David Petraeus told HLN's Kyra Phillips that he did not share classified information with his mistress, Paula Broadwell, nor was his resignation tied to upcoming testimony on the attack in Benghazi that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens.

Here's how Phillips reported her interview on "Morning Express with Robin Meade" on CNN's sister network.


Filed under: CIA • David Petraeus • TV-Morning Express
American to be freed from Nicaraguan prison after nearly two years
“I don't know the reason that I'm here," Jason Puracal has said.
September 12th, 2012
09:05 PM ET

American to be freed from Nicaraguan prison after nearly two years

By Ashley Fantz, CNN

An American who has been imprisoned for nearly two years in Nicaragua will be freed Thursday, and all the charges he was convicted of will be vacated, according to members of his legal team and a judicial order they gave to CNN.

Jason Puracal, a 35-year old native of Washington state, had been serving a 22-year sentence for drug-related crimes in one of the Latin American country's most notorious prisons. He is one of 12 people ordered freed.

Since his arrest in 2011, Puracal had many vocal defenders who said the charges were baseless and there was not a shred of evidence presented at his trial to support the charges. Those defenders included prominent human rights activists, renown international attorneys, a former FBI investigator and a U.S. congressman. 

Why defenders believe Puracal is innocent

As his attorneys got word of the release order, it was unclear if Puracal was aware that he was to be a free man, said his attorney Jared Genser.

“We are trying to get word to Jason, but it’s after hours in the prison,” he said. “But we can say this is very, very good news, and we’re pleased that justice can be had in Nicaragua.”

In August, Puracal spoke by phone with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, saying he has been imprisoned in a “hellhole” and that he was “100 percent innocent.”

“I don't know the reason that I'm here," Puracal said. "That's been a mystery from the very beginning. What the motives behind the police and the prosecution have been." 

Wednesday’s order from the court was the result of an appeal hearing that concluded earlier this summer in which Puracal’s legal team argued for his release.

"The family is thrilled to hear the news that they are another huge step closer to bringing Jason home. There is one thing we have known all along over the past two years: Jason is innocent," said Eric Volz, a spokesman for Puracal's family


Filed under: Nicaragua • TV-Anderson Cooper 360
August 15th, 2012
12:42 AM ET

CNN Prime Time: Paul Ryan's first interview; police show how man shot himself

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VP Pick Paul Ryan gives first TV interview

Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan gives his first one-on-one interview since becoming the nominee.

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Police reenact mysterious death

Police say Chavis Carter shot himself in the head when he was handcuffed in the back of a police car. They demonstrate how it may have happened.

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Hope Solo: I have a bad rep

Olympian and U.S. soccer champ Hope Solo talks to Piers Morgan about her reputation in the media.

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Filed under: 2012 Election • Arkansas • Budget • CNN Prime Time • Crime • Drugs • Economy • Finance • Justice • Marijuana • Mitt Romney • Olympics • Politics • Soccer • Sports • TV-Anderson Cooper 360 • TV-Piers Morgan • Uncategorized
August 8th, 2012
12:32 AM ET

CNN Prime Time: Ex-stepmom talks about Wisconsin temple shooter; Loughner pleads guilty to Tucson shooting

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Ex-Stepmom: Suspected shooter 'kind'

The former stepmother of the Wisconsin temple shooter talks to CNN’s Anderson Cooper about Wade Michael Page's life as a child, before he joined the military.

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Loughner's mom cries as charges read

Kyung Lah shares what she saw in the courtroom when Jared Lee Loughner pleaded guilty to the mass shooting outside a Tucson, Arizona, supermarket.

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Shark attack victim: ‘I was caught in a vice’

Piers Morgan talks to a man who survived an encounter with a great white shark off Cape Cod.

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Filed under: Arizona • Boston • CNN Prime Time • Courts • Crime • Justice • Military • Sharks • TV-Anderson Cooper 360 • TV-Piers Morgan • TV-The Situation Room • Uncategorized • wildlife • Wisconsin
April 11th, 2012
09:49 PM ET

CNN prime time: Zimmerman 'troubled,' Cooper does damage control

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Zimmerman 'troubled' by charge

The Trayvon Martin case takes a turn as the man who admitted to shooting him is charged.

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Gingrich: No one asked me to drop out

"It's now a two-person race," says Newt Gingrich following Santorum's withdrawal from the field.

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Cooper on 'RidicuList' for giggle fit

CNN's Anderson Cooper puts himself on the "RidicuList" for another on-air giggle fit.

Gotta Watch: So you think you can sing?
President Obama, Warren Buffet and Hermain Cain showed off singing skills in recent days.
January 23rd, 2012
10:26 AM ET

Gotta Watch: So you think you can sing?

Aerosmith's Steven Tyler is a singer, although some might dispute that label, given his performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Sunday's Patriots-Ravens game. In the last few days, we've heard from a few famous folks who do not have "singer" on their resume, yet they thought enough of themselves to give it a go. Today's Gotta Watch: So you think you can sing?

Amateur night at the Apollo - The White House liked President Obama's recent musical homage to the Rev. Al Green so much, they've made it into a ringtone. [cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/politics/2012/01/20/tsr-bts-obama-sings-at-apollo.cnn"%5D

FULL POST

Gotta Watch: Things 'The Donald' says
'The Donald' doing what he does best
December 8th, 2011
11:43 AM ET

Gotta Watch: Things 'The Donald' says

Donald Trump is a man of many titles. Reality TV mogul, business tycoon, potential political power broker.  You name it, the man has his hands in just about everything. And he seem to have an opinion on just about everything too. For today's Gotta Watch, we bring you more of the outlandish things "The Donald" loves to say. Have you ever listened to this guy? One might think the man just loves to hear himself talk.

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Filed under: Celebrity • Gotta Watch • Lady Gaga • Politics • Showbiz • TV-Piers Morgan
Gotta Watch: Rick Santorum
Rick Santorum talks about his stance on gay marriage.
September 1st, 2011
01:06 PM ET

Gotta Watch: Rick Santorum

He's the GOP presidential hopeful trying to make headway in field that's been dominated with talk of Mitt Romney and Rick Perry. This week, Rick Santorum is making headlines for slamming CNN's Piers Morgan for calling him a bigot. Get to know this Republican and check out the feisty response he gave to Penn State students here.
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Filed under: Elections • Politics • Republican Party • TV-Piers Morgan • U.S.
Nancy Grace: I don't have to agree with Casey Anthony jury
HLN host and former prosecutor Nancy Grace broadcasts live during verdict watch in the Casey Anthony trial this week.
July 6th, 2011
08:56 PM ET

Nancy Grace: I don't have to agree with Casey Anthony jury

HLN host Nancy Grace has been credited with making the Casey Anthony case a national story. She has been outspoken in her belief that Anthony is guilty of murdering her daughter, despite a jury's verdict. She's also a former prosecutor with strong opinions about what went on in the Florida courtroom in the past few weeks. She spoke with CNN.com about how she would have tried the case, the "CSI effect" on juries and why she doesn't "give a fig" about what Anthony's defense team thinks about her.

Grace: As I’ve always said since 1984, when I started trying cases, you win or lose your case - it’s all over at the end of voir dire (jury selection). I’ve always believed that. It’s true. I think this jury hamstrung the state. The state absolutely put up a good case and I get real fed up when I hear this is a circumstantial case. Most cases are circumstantial because rarely do people commit felony crimes in the open. Murder, armed robbery, you do it in private, in secret, so very rarely is there an eyewitness or direct evidence to a crime.

CNN: Watching a case like this, do you miss the courtroom and prosecuting cases?

Grace: I always miss the courtroom. I miss the courtroom all the time because the courtroom gave me immediate gratification. I knew I’d done something worthwhile when I put someone behind bars or represented crime victims, I knew I had a done a good thing by speaking for people who couldn’t speak for themselves. I don’t get that immediate gratification from being on TV.

CNN: As a former prosecutor, if you could retry this case, how would you do it differently?

Grace: I think they did such a very good job it’s hard to attack anything they did. I think maybe I would’ve taken a different tack in jury selection but that’s really it. There were some obvious problem jurors: You had one on there with an arrest for DUI; another with an arrest for drug paraphernalia; one whose sister and her boyfriend beat up their father; one juror who said she could not judge. Why the heck would you not want someone off the jury who cannot judge? The jury is the sole judge of facts, evidence and the law. Who the heck wants someone who can’t judge? They tried to get rid of them but were not successful. I think the jury was snakebitten from the get-go.

CNN: What do you think is the most important piece of evidence that the jury never saw or heard?

Grace: I don’t believe they saw all of the audiotapes or heard all the videotapes (of Casey Anthony’s jailhouse phone calls). I think the so-called bodyguard or bail bondsman had a lot to offer, his discussions with tot mom when she was referring to Caylee in the past tense before her body had been found, her being very flip about Caylee, being more concerned about a hot guy flirting with her on Facebook. Evidence of that nature.

FULL POST

July 5th, 2011
07:55 PM ET

Jury's verdict: Casey Anthony not guilty of murder

Editor's note: For more on the jury's finding that Casey Anthony is not guilty in daughter Caylee's death read our full story here.

[Updated at 8:20 p.m.] From the moment word came that Casey Anthony was acquitted of murdering her 2-year-old daughter, online networking sites were flooded with a cascade of amateur commentary. A few big names, including Kim Kardashian, joined the fray. Most condemned the verdict - "no justice for Caylee" was a common comment - which comes after years of the case serving as fodder for cable news, tabloids and the like.

[Updated at 7:55 p.m.] Mourners of Caylee Anthony want you to turn your porch lights on tonight in honor of the slain 2-year-old.

The Facebook event, "Porch lights on for Caylee Marie Anthony," urges people "all over the world" to start participating at "9 pm in your own time zone."

Already, 546,610 have said they're attending, and some say their lights are already on.

ALTERNATE JUROR SPEAKS

[Updated at 7:20 p.m.] Alternate juror Russell Huekler said he agrees with the jury's verdict "wholeheartedly" and surmised that Caylee Anthony's death was a "horrific accident" gone awry.

"The prosecution did not prove their case," said Huekler, who sat through the entire case but did not get to deliberate the charges.

Prosecutors failed to answer the question of how Caylee died, he said.

From the testimony, Huekler said he drew the conclusion that "it was probably a horrific accident" that Anthony and her father, George Anthony, covered up.

"Unfortunately it did snowball and got away from them," Huekler said. "It was such a horrific accident that they didn't know how to deal with it. The family appeared to be very dysufintional and instead of admitting there was an accident, they chose to hide it, for whatever reason."

CASEY ANTHONY'S FAMILY

[Updated at 5:08 p.m.] Attorney Mark Lippman issued a statement on behalf of Lee, George and Cindy Anthony:

While the family may never know what has happened to Caylee Marie Anthony, they now have closure for this chapter of their life. They will now begin the long process of rebuilding their lives.

Despite the baseless defense chosen by Casey Anthony, the family believes that the Jury made a fair decision based on the evidence presented, the testimony presented, the scientific information presented and the rules that were given to them by the Honorable Judge Perry to guide them.

The family hopes that they will be given the time by the media to reflect on this verdict and decide the best way to move forward privately.

The family also wanted the public to know that if anyone wanted to honor Caylee by leaving stuffed animals or other toys at any area near their home, that they would prefer those items be donated in Caylee’ s name to families in need, religious centers, or any other entity where the toys would be appreciated.

FULL POST

July 5th, 2011
07:17 PM ET

What's next for Casey Anthony?

Florida mother Casey Anthony was acquitted of all charges Tuesday in the death of daughter Caylee in 2008. But she still faces sentencing Thursday on four counts of lying to police regarding a missing person. What could be in store for her?

Each misdemeanor count carries a maximum sentence of one year in county jail, for which Judge Belvin Perry has the option of sentencing her consecutively or concurrently.

The defense plans to ask Perry that she be sentenced concurrently because the four counts occurred at the same time, defense lawyer Cheney Mason told In Session's Jean Casarez.

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Filed under: Casey Anthony • Crime • TV-In Session
Florida v. Casey Anthony: A look back at evidence and testimony
July 5th, 2011
05:22 PM ET

Florida v. Casey Anthony: A look back at evidence and testimony

A Florida jury on Tuesday found Casey Anthony not guilty in the 2008 death of her daughter, Caylee. Here's a look back at highlights from 33 days and more than 100 witnesses in the trial of the year:

Week 1: As Casey Anthony murder trial begins, mysteries remain

The case of Florida v. Casey Marie Anthony began with both sides summing up their versions of what they believed the evidence would show. From the prosecution, jurors heard a timeline of the defendant's activities before her mother reported Caylee missing: parties, drinking and sleepovers with men.

Those days included getting a tattoo, participating in a "hot body" contest at an Orlando club, many Caylee-free nights at her then-boyfriend Anthony Lazzaro's apartment and many, many lies, the prosecution said.

"No one else benefited from the death of Caylee Marie Anthony," said assistant state attorney Linda Drane-Burdick in her opening statement. "Caylee's death allowed Casey to live a good life, at least for those 31 days."

From the defense, jurors were presented with an image of loving mother, whose dysfunctional family forced her to live in a state of denial. They argued the family held dark secrets, including that Casey was sexually abused by her father and brother.

The defense also revealed their theory of the case: Caylee drowned in the family pool as the result of what Baez called "an accident that snowballed out of control." He said it was an accident to which Casey's father, George Anthony, was privy. Baez said George Anthony tried to cover up the drowning at Casey's expense.

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Filed under: Casey Anthony • Crime • TV-In Session • TV-Nancy Grace
Psychologists: Casey Anthony is competent
Casey Anthony is accused of killing her two-year-old daughter.
June 27th, 2011
10:11 AM ET

Psychologists: Casey Anthony is competent

Casey Anthony, charged with killing her 2-year-old daughter in 2008, underwent examinations by three psychologists over the weekend after her defense team filed a motion to determine her competency to proceed, the judge in her trial said Monday.

All three psychologists found Anthony competent, Orange County Chief Judge Belvin Perry said out of the jury's presence. Their reports will be sealed, he said. It was implied - but not expressly stated - that the motion was the reason for the abrupt recess Perry called on Saturday.

The resumption of the trial Monday was delayed for more than a half-hour as attorneys huddled in Perry's chambers.

Saturday had been planned as an extended weekend work day in the trial. But Perry ordered a recess over the sudden emergence of what one analyst said must be a major issue.

"Obviously it's big, and obviously it's troublesome and obviously it's something that can't be disclosed," HLN legal analyst Linda Kenney Baden said.

Perry emerged from his chambers Saturday morning after nearly an hour of discussion with lawyers both inside and outside the courtroom to announce the day's planned testimony would be canceled.

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Filed under: Casey Anthony • Crime • TV-Nancy Grace
Gotta Watch: May-December romances
Crystal Harris has called off her wedding to Playboy founder Hugh Hefner
June 15th, 2011
11:06 AM ET

Gotta Watch: May-December romances

Perhaps Crystal Harris didn't want bridesmaids wearing bunny ears. Or perhaps she got tired of people suggesting her fiance was the "old" in "Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue." Whatever the reason, it's official: Harris has called off her wedding to Playboy founder Hugh Hefner. Since much of the fascination about Hef and the Playboy Playmate centers around their 60-year age difference, today's Gotta Watch looks as some of our favorite May-December romances.

Harris makes "The RidicuList" - CNN's Anderson Cooper says he just doesn't get why Hefner's ex-fiancee would call off their big day.  He managed to put her on "The RidicuList" with references to dogs and hydrants, orthopedic shoes and penicillin.

'Til death do us part - What's the secret to a successful marriage?  Selflessly sharing the mic at a press junket? Polishing your spouse's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame without being asked? Here, Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore say it's as simple as a Post-It note.

Donald and Melania - Before Donald Trump flirted with the idea of running for president, he was flirting with now-wife Melania. Here, she tells HLN's Joy Behar that she initially didn't want to give Trump her number. No, it wasn't because he wanted to see her birth certificate.

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Filed under: Celebrity • Donald Trump • Showbiz • TV-Anderson Cooper 360
Gotta Watch: Mexico's drug war
Mexican police investigate a violent incident in Juarez, Mexico.
June 14th, 2011
11:22 AM ET

Gotta Watch: Mexico's drug war

U.S. lawmakers are now calling for tougher firearms regulations after a report showed that more than 70% of Mexico's drug cartel weapons come from the United States. Violence associated with drug cartels has been a growing problem in Mexico, resulting in thousands of deaths. One of the more prominent ones was that of Mexican police chief, Martin Castro. His head was delivered to his colleagues in an ice box with a message from a powerful drug cartel in the region.  In today's Gotta Watch, we feature some of our more compelling stories highlighting the continued violence stemming from drug cartels in Mexico.

Mexico's 'bravest woman' - When 20-year-old Marisol Valles Garcia became police chief in one the deadliest parts of the world, she was dubbed the “bravest woman in all of Mexico.” Her predecessor had been beheaded, and it was a job no one was willing to take. Now, she’s left the only place she knows – a place where beheadings, shootings and gangland killings have become commonplace.

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Filed under: Crime • Drug violence • Drugs • Gotta Watch • Juarez • Marijuana • Mexico • Security • TV-Anderson Cooper 360 • World
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