April 11th, 2012
09:49 PM ET

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


Zimmerman 'troubled' by charge

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


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.


Cooper on 'RidicuList' for giggle fit

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

April 11th, 2012
08:02 PM ET

Zimmerman charged with second-degree murder

George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer who says he was acting in self-defense when he fatally shot teenager Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida, has been charged with murder in the second degree, special prosecutor Angela Corey told reporters Wednesday.

Read the charges (PDF) | Read Corey's remarks (PDF)

Corey said that Zimmerman has surrendered to authorities in Florida and has been arrested. The charge carries a maximum possible sentence of life in prison.

Police say Zimmerman fatally shot Martin, a 17-year-old African-American, on February 26 in Sanford, Florida, after Martin began walking home from a convenience store. Zimmerman, who is Hispanic and was a neighborhood watch volunteer, had called 911 to complain about a suspicious person in the neighborhood. He was released without charges after claiming self-defense, but the case was referred to Corey for a review as thousands converged on Sanford to join in protests calling for Zimmerman's arrest.

The following are running updates on the story:

[Updated at 7:30 p.m. ET] Zimmerman's new attorney, Mark O'Mara, said that he expects to file a motion seeking bond for Zimmerman on Thursday. Currently, Zimmerman is being held without opportunity for bond.

O'Mara told CNN by phone that he thinks Zimmerman is "troubled by the fact that the state decided to charge him," but that he "understands what is in front of him," and he's "doing OK."

At a news conference outside his office seconds later, O'Mara told reporters that Zimmerman voluntarily surrendered to Florida authorities, and that authorities were in the process of moving him to custody in Seminole County, Florida.

"He's concerned about getting a fair trial and a fair presentation," O'Mara said. "There's obviously been a lot of information flowing. I think a lot of it has been premature and inappropriate."

"The worst thing that can happen in this case is that it doesn't get tried properly," O'Mara said. "Give us our chance to do it the way it's supposed to be done."

On Tuesday, Zimmerman's former attorneys Hal Uhrig and Craig Sonner told reporters they had lost contact with Zimmerman and no longer represent him.

iReport.com: What's your reaction?

[Updated at 7:04 p.m. ET] Sanford's mayor, Jeff Triplett, called "for continued calm in Sanford, its surrounding communities and around the nation."

"The case is in the hands of the justice system. Please allow it to work through the process and come to a natural conclusion," Triplett said in a news conference in Sanford, following Corey's announcement.


Overheard on CNN.com: Zimmerman charges spark emotional discussion about law and race
George Zimmerman, left, says he shot Trayvon Martin, right, in self-defense.
April 11th, 2012
07:14 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Zimmerman charges spark emotional discussion about law and race

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

George Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder in connection with the February 26 shooting of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, a Florida state attorney announced Wednesday. State attorney Angela Corey said Zimmerman had surrendered to authorities and had been arrested. As the news developed, readers engaged in powerful discussions on the live blog.

Please share your reaction in the comments area below and on CNN iReport.

Zimmerman charged with second-degree murder

Some of the conversation was about Corey's motives.

TP: "For claiming that George Zimmerman wouldn't be tried in the court of public opinion, Angela Corey seems to be running for office with that speech of hers more than prosecuting a case."

This person said an investigation is necessary.

Jeannie: "Now maybe justice can be served. Let the facts and evidence be presented in a court of law. I'm so sick of hearing people whine about race and some stupid pictures and how old they are in them. My question is, why wasn't the case properly investigated in the first place? Why did it take Al Sharpton and (Jesse Jackson) to come on to the scene to get the national attention? So he was charged and the evidence will be presented. Why anyone would be angry about this is beyond me. I'm white and I hear more white people angry as can be that he was charged ... I don't get it."

Some said they thought Corey was playing to public sentiment rather than the facts of the case. FULL POST

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Filed under: Florida • Justice • Overheard on CNN.com • Race • Trayvon Martin • Trayvon Martin • U.S.
What's happens now that Zimmerman is charged in Trayvon Martin death?
April 11th, 2012
06:07 PM ET

What's happens now that Zimmerman is charged in Trayvon Martin death?

The special prosecutor in the Trayvon Martin shooting case has announced she has filed a charge of second-degree murder against George Zimmerman.

So, what did special prosecutor Angela Corey have to do legally to get here and what will happen next?

In Session's Beth Karas and Jessica Thrill break down the steps Corey took in order to file the charges and how the case will proceed from here.

STEP 1 – Now that Zimmerman is in custody, he has a “first appearance” before a judge

* Zimmerman had his first appearance at 1:30 p.m. Thursday.
* First appearance hearings have to happen within 24 hours of someone’s arrest.
* The judge read the charges, so Zimmerman is clear about the crimes he is accused of.
* The judge addressed Zimmerman’s right to counsel. Zimmerman has hired Mark O’Mara.

STEP 2 – Zimmerman’s bond

* Second-degree murder is considered a “nonbondable” offense because the maximum penalty is life in prison.
* Both sides may have already agreed on a reasonable bond.
* But if they haven’t, then Zimmerman’s attorney, Mark O’Mara, can ask for an “Arthur hearing” in an attempt to get bond set.

  1. If O’Mara does ask for an “Arthur Hearing,” it could happen early next week.

* At the “Arthur hearing,” the burden is on the prosecutors to show that Zimmerman should not be given bond.

  1. To meet that burden, they will have to present evidence to support no bond.
  2. If the prosecutors fail to meet the burden, the judge will look at other factors to decide whether to set bond. Those factors include Zimmerman’s ties to the community, whether he’s a flight risk and whether he’s a danger to the community.

* This hearing is the opportunity for the defense to see the prosecution’s evidence against Zimmerman. So, we could get to hear some of the evidence that has not been disclosed.

STEP 3 – Arraignment

* The arraignment will likely happen within two to three weeks of the arrest.

* Zimmerman may or may not appear in open court for his arraignment.

  1. Often the defendant will waive the appearance at the actual court hearing and his attorney can enter a written plea of not guilty on his behalf.

* Zimmerman will be arraigned and must enter a plea on the charges, most likely “not guilty” (at this stage, defendants almost never plead guilty).

  1. In fact, O’Mara has already indicated that publicly.

STEP 4 – Defense files a motion to dismiss based on “stand your ground” law

* Zimmerman is entitled to a pretrial evidentiary hearing on whether he can use the stand your ground immunity.

* The burden at that hearing is on the defense to prove by “a preponderance of the evidence” (meaning it’s more likely than not) that Zimmerman was justified in using deadly force.

  1. In Florida, an individual can use deadly force anywhere (with no duty to retreat) as long as he/she:

- is not engaged in an unlawful activity;

- is being attacked in a place he/she has a right to be; and

- reasonably believes that his/her life and safety is in danger.

* The judge decides whether Zimmerman’s actions were justified and therefore entitle him to the stand your ground immunity.

  1. If the judge finds the force was justifiable, then the charges are dismissed and Zimmerman is immune from further criminal prosecution and, possibly, civil liability.
  2. If the judge finds the force was not justifiable, then the charges against Zimmerman move forward (see steps 5 and 6 below)

* If the judge rules Zimmerman is immune, the prosecution can appeal that decision to a higher court.


Bolton's Fabrice Muamba to get defibrillator, return to training, according to reports
Bolton's Fabrice Muamba collapsed after a cardiac arrest during a match against Tottenham last month.
April 11th, 2012
03:58 PM ET

Bolton's Fabrice Muamba to get defibrillator, return to training, according to reports

The Bolton Wanderers' Fabrice Muamba is not only on the mend, according to media reports, but - incredibly - he may soon be able to return to training.

The Zaire-born Englishman, who turned 24 last week, collapsed last month during an English FA Cup match against Tottenham. Doctors said he suffered a cardiac arrest and was, in effect, dead for 78 minutes as medics tried to restart his heart.

He gave the sporting world a fright as he lay motionless on the field for several minutes before being put into an ambulance where efforts to revive him continued. The Tottenham match was postponed until later in the month.

Less than a week after Muamba's collapse, doctors said he was improving - joking about and speaking in English and French - despite remaining in serious condition. Today comes news from the Daily Mirror that Muamba will have a minor operation to install a miniature defibrillator in his armpit.

The procedure will take place at the London Chest Hospital, where Muamba has been treated since his March 17 collapse. The purpose of the procedure, according to the tabloid, is to help him in the event he suffers a similar event in the future, as Muamba intends to return to training with his squad.


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Filed under: Health • Soccer • Sports • United Kingdom • World
Overheard on CNN.com: 1940 census records help readers learn about relatives, history
Census Bureau employees process microfilm records, circa 1940. Online records mean no more traveling to microfilm archives.
April 11th, 2012
03:18 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: 1940 census records help readers learn about relatives, history

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

Many people are taking a peek into the past after the release of 1940 census records. In a CNN.com opinion piece, Michael S. Snow, a historian with the U.S. Census Bureau, offered his thoughts on why that might be the case. Readers shared their enthusiasm in the comments section, providing some fascinating stories about genealogy and discovery.

We'd like to hear from you about what you've found. If you've learned something interesting about the history of your house after digging through the archives, please share your story at CNN iReport.

Why the huge interest in the 1940s census?

One reader said she hoped to learn about relatives she never got to meet.

Buffalogal013: "I have been waiting for the 1940 census for the longest time. I was very excited to see its release, though disappointed that it wasn't searchable in the state that I needed. Still I was able to 'meet' my Dad's parents and a couple of his siblings who both died before I could remember them and find my Mom's parents and grandparents. (I had not met her father's parents.) It was interesting to see how my Mom's father's mother - who had emigrated from Italy in 1913 - had Americanized her name between the 1930 and 1940 census and became a naturalized citizen. It was a neat moment."

With some detailed research, another commenter discovered a family member.

Guest: "I have been trying to find the identity of my grandfather for years. The 1940 census was pretty much my last hope. I had a last name and an idea of his first ... and I found him! I couldn't care less that it wasn't searchable. I just went through line by line in the area my grandmother lived in and bingo! Further research confirms that my father was named after him, just without the last name.

For others, the thrill was in learning a bit more about the details of how people lived. FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Census • History • Overheard on CNN.com • U.S.
April 11th, 2012
02:01 PM ET

Parole denied for Manson

A California panel denied parole for Charles Manson and scheduled his next parole hearing 15 years from now, setting up the possibility that he could die in prison.

Manson, 77, initially was sentenced to death for the 1969 slayings of actress Sharon Tate and six others by a group of his followers as part of what prosecutors said was an attempt to incite a race war. His death sentence was changed to life in prison after California's death penalty was overturned for a period during the 1970s.

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Filed under: California • Crime • Justice • Prisons
April 11th, 2012
01:59 PM ET

After another spectacular exit, Petrino eyes football return

Bobby Petrino’s firing Tuesday as University of Arkansas football coach was the latest chapter in a colorful career that has seen great success on the field but also less-than-flattering headlines.

Arkansas’ athletic director said he fired Petrino because, in part, Petrino didn’t immediately disclose that a 25-year-old female member of his staff was with him when he crashed his motorcycle on April 1.

A university review also determined the woman had had a consensual relationship with the married father of four, and that he had hired the woman – out of 159 applicants - days earlier without disclosing their relationship, Athletics Director Jeff Long said.

Petrino “engaged in a pattern of misleading and manipulative behavior designed to deceive me and members of the athletics staff before and after the accident,” Long said Tuesday.

Not the kind of statement you’d want from a former boss if you’re looking for your next gig. But the 51-year-old coach has been getting jobs despite a reputation for a lack of candor, and he’ll likely get another chance, SI.com’s Andy Staples writes.

“Some school will eventually hire him. He wins football games. That makes up for any number of foibles,” Staples writes.


Post by:
Filed under: Arkansas • College football • Football • Sports
April 11th, 2012
11:23 AM ET

Justice Department sues Apple over alleged price-fixing scheme

The U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday brought a lawsuit against Apple and several publishing companies over an alleged scheme to fix e-book prices, a source with knowledge of the investigation told CNNMoney.

The suit likely stems from the 2010 release of the iPad, when Apple reached an agreement with five publishers to release books on its then-new iBookstore.

A similar investigation led by the European Commission is probing whether Apple colluded to raise the price of e-books with CBS's Simon & Schuster, News Corp.'s HarperCollins; Hachette Book Group; Pearson's Penguin unit and Macmillan.

Before the release of the iPad, Amazon's Kindle was the preeminent e-book reader on the market. Amazon forced publishers to sell most books at $9.99 - a price that came in below the cost of the books.

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Filed under: Apple • Business • Technology
April 11th, 2012
09:44 AM ET

Prosecutor to make announcement soon in Martin case

A special prosecutor plans to release new information within days about the controversial case involving 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, who was shot to death by a neighborhood watch volunteer.

Angela Corey said Tuesday the information will be released in the next three days. Her announcement came the same day that attorneys for George Zimmerman, who says he shot Martin in self-defense, told reporters they had lost contact with Zimmerman and no longer represent him.

"He has gone on his own. I'm not sure what he's doing or who he's talking to," said Craig Sonner, Zimmerman's former legal adviser. "If he wants us to come back as counsel, he will contact us."

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Filed under: Florida • Trayvon Martin
April 11th, 2012
09:04 AM ET

Magnitude 8.6 quake strikes off the Indonesian island of Sumatra

A massive earthquake struck off the coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra on Wednesday, triggering a tsunami watch for the Indian Ocean.

The magnitude 8.6 quake struck about 500 kilometers from Indonesia's Aceh province, the U.S. Geological Survey said. It took place at a depth of 33 kilometers.

Are you there? Send your images, video to iReport

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center initially issued a tsunami watch for the entire Indian Ocean, but the watch has been cancelled.

Banda Aceh was devastated by a tsunami resulting from an earthquake in December 2004.

[Updated at 9:04 a.m. ET] The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has cancelled its tsunami watch in the Indian Ocean.

"Sea level readings now indicate that the threat had diminished or is over for most areas," the center said.

[Updated at 8:34 a.m. ET] CNN's Kathy Quiano reports that officials have said about 14 aftershocks have rocked Indonesia after the initial 8.6 magnitude earthquake.

Officials are still telling residents to saying stay away from the coastline.

"We are hearing that many residents are choosing to stay away from their homes and have sought shelter on safer and higher ground," Quiano reported, noting that many of the people had taken part in regular drills given that they are prone to quakes and the devastation caused by the 2004 quake.

[Updated at 8:15 a.m. ET] Barry Hirshorn, a geophysicist from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, told CNN that while the earthquake was a 8.6 magnitude and is considered large, it could be much different than the 9.0 magnitude quake that hit in 2004. Because the epicenter of this recent quake is also nearly double the distance offshore, it also means that it could be less likely to create a massive tsunami.

Hirshorn added that was also largely in part to how the rupture of the earth took place in this tsunami. Hirshorn explained that the earthquake in 2004 made more of a vertical motion, which would produce larger waves, while this strike-slip earthquake creates more side-to-side motion.

"Tusnami-wise, we are lucky that way, for now," he said.

Interactive: World's biggest quakes  | How do you measure an earthquake?

[Updated at 8:12 a.m. ET]  A spokesperson for the Indonesian president said the situation in the country is under control but he still anticipates that tsunamis may hit the area.

Teuku Faizasyah said right now it is most important to ensure people that they are safe. Search and rescue teams have been deployed.

"What's important is to bring confidence among the people that the government is with them, that we are ensuring their safety," he told CNN.

Tsunami warnings are in place for another hour, he added, saying they will watch the remote areas of the country especially closely.

"We are really waiting to hear from the isolated areas, but hopefully we wont receive any bad news," Faizasyah  said.

[Updated at 8:01  a.m. ET]  Waves were reported at 1-meter (3.3-feet) amplitude offshore in Meulaboh, Indonesia, but in other cities they were reported at about a foot or less, according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

A series of buoys also measured changes in wave height levels, indicating a tsunami could occur. Waves are normally small when they are out in the ocean, but are expected to be much higher when they reach the shore.

British Prime Minister David Cameron announced that Britain "stands ready to help if required."

[Updated at 7:44 a.m. ET] An evacuation order has been given by Thailand's National Disaster Warning Center for those along the Andaman coast after the earthquake, according to CNN affiliate MCOT.

The warning center's director Somsak Khaosuwann "urged people along the sea in the Andaman coastal provinces of Phuket, Krabi, Phang-nga, Ranong, Trang and Satun to evacuate to higher ground," according to MCOT.

MCOT, also known as Thai TV 9, noted that tremors were felt as far as Bangkok.

In the Maldives, some resorts were evacuated in advance of possible waves, according to CNN's Erin Burnett, who was on vacation in the region.


Nine Peruvian miners rescued after being trapped for days
April 11th, 2012
08:20 AM ET

Nine Peruvian miners rescued after being trapped for days

Nine Peruvian miners were rescued Wednesday from a mine where they had been trapped for days.

State television showed the miners leaving the mine, each supported by two rescuers. They wore sunglasses.

Peruvian President Ollanta Humala greeted the miners at the mouth of the mine. The group unfurled the red and white Peruvian flag and waved at the television cameras.

"We are happy that this high-risk operation was successful," said Claudio Saenz, a fire department official with knowledge of the rescue efforts.

The nine miners have been stuck since Thursday in the wildcat Cabeza de Negro mine in southern Peru.

A cave-in over the weekend slowed progress. For days, a hose placed in the collapsed cavern was the only connection the miners had to the surface.

The miners had been getting oxygen, food and water through a tube, which has also allowed them to stay in contact with people above ground, Peru's state-run Andina news agency reported.

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Filed under: Peru
April 11th, 2012
07:50 AM ET

Wednesday's live events

The race for the presidency can change at the drop of the hat, and CNN.com Live will be there for all the latest news and views from the campaign trail.

Today's programming highlights...

Continuing coverage - Indonesia earthquake and aftermath

10:00 am ET - Gingrich talks to seniors - Rick Santorum may be out of the GOP presidential race, but Newt Gingrich remains a candidate.  He'll speak at a senior center in Newark, Delaware.


Filed under: Elections • Indonesia • On CNN.com today • Politics • Republican Party • World
April 11th, 2012
04:22 AM ET

Peru president says rescue of miners could be Wednesday

Peru's president asked a group of miners trapped in a mine in southern Peru to stay patient and try to be in good spirits as workers feverishly tried to rescue them Wednesday morning.

Talking through a hose placed in the collapsed cavern, President Ollanta Humala tried to assure the nine trapped men that they could be free in several hours, Peru's state-run Andina news agency reported.

The miners have been stuck since Thursday in the wildcat Cabeza de Negro mine in southern Peru.

A cave-in over the weekend slowed progress.


Filed under: Uncategorized • World
April 11th, 2012
03:50 AM ET

Annan optimistic of cease-fire amid new shelling in Syria

Shelling and rocket fire erupted in Syria on Wednesday as international envoy Kofi Annan held out hope that government forces and the opposition will meet a looming deadline to end all hostilities.

Annan said a cease-fire can still be reached by Thursday, when a peace plan he brokered calls for the government and the opposition to lay down their weapons. The deadline expires at 6 a.m. Syrian time (11 p.m. ET Wednesday).

Syria's self-imposed deadline to pull back government forces came and went Tuesday as attacks continued nationwide, sparking condemnation against the regime.


Filed under: World
April 11th, 2012
01:17 AM ET

Court disbands Egypt's constitutional group

Egypt's administrative court suspended the country's 100-member constitutional assembly on Tuesday delaying the drafting of the new constitution.

The move stalls Egypt's attempt to rebuild after the revolt that toppled longtime strongman Hosni Mubarak last year.

The court order stated that parliament must elect 100 "qualified" people from outside the parliament to write the constitution.

A newly created assembly must include members representative of Egypt's "political and social map" according to the court order.


Filed under: World
April 11th, 2012
01:15 AM ET

North Korea says fueling of rocket is under way

North Korea has started fueling a long-range rocket it plans to launch in the coming days, a senior national space official said Wednesday.

Fueling of the rocket, which North Korea says will put a satellite in orbit, is under way and will be completed at the "appropriate time," said Ryu Kun Chol, deputy director of the Space Development Department of the Korea Space Technology Committee.

He declined to be more specific.

The announcement last month of the satellite launch - which countries like the United States and South Korea see as a cover for a ballistic missile test - ratcheted up tensions in the region and prompted Washington to suspend a recent deal to supply food aid to the North.


Filed under: World